Amazon is a retailer, a VERY big retailer and it is synonymous with books. Although now it offers A LOT MORE. So it makes sense that the first question I get from a lot of authors I work with is how to get their book there. And for many authors, they’re not making a career out of self-publishing. They want to get this first book out or maybe just one book to complement their current business. And they’ve heard about people making a fortune with Amazon FBA or something about self-publishing. So today I’m going to explain to you the primary channels you have to self-publish on Amazon.
First and foremost – none of this is Amazon FBA. That is only for physical products, and self-publishing books is for print books but also for eBooks and audiobooks. Every side-hustley podcast you’ve listened to about FBA millionaires – FORGET IT. With self-publishing, you are 99 times out of 100 going to be going with print on demand or (POD) for those print books and obviously digital books are different. So no warehousing.
There are two main avenues for you to be able to self-publish your book and get it on Amazon.com:
Amazon KDP – Kindle Direct Publishing
Self-Publishing Distribution Platforms
So going direct with Amazon KDP you can self-publish eBooks, Paperbacks, and Hardcover books but this is the newest function and very limited in terms of the book sizes and locations it is available. For a one-stop just get the book on to Amazon, KDP is the most direct route. But the catch is, this only gets your book on Amazon.com and the associated country sites like amazon.co.uk, amazon.ca, etc. They say they can get you expanded distribution to other retailers. Eh in theory they could but most other retailers don’t like Amazon. So it only gets you to Amazon. (They have ACX for you to get audiobooks onto Amazon.com and Audible.)
Now there is nothing wrong with that, BUT you may start to think. Wait, but my dream of a line of fans waiting for an autographed copy. Wait, but what about libraries. Wait, but what about Barnes & Noble?
That’s where the second option may appeal to you. Believe it or not self-publishing has matured quite a bit over the past decade and you can work with one of these distribution platforms to get your book on to Amazon and other retailers. These platforms are also called aggregators because they have relationships with multiple retailers. Most have all the biggies: Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Overdrive for libraries, and Amazon. This can be a better solution for you if you want that wider distribution. BUT, if and when there are little glitches with your listing on Amazon.com, you’re gonna get a bit of a customer service run around. Which is kind of par for the course with Amazon anyways.
Some of the biggest aggregators that most self-publishing authors like to work with are sites like: IngramSpark, Draft2Digital, Smashwords, LuLu, Publish Drive, etc.
For audiobooks aggregators like Findaway Voices can get you to Amazon and Audible but also Audiobooks.com, Nook Audio, Google Play, etc.
Okay, so now that you know the main avenues you can use to get your book on to Amazon.com, which ones sounds more appealing to you? As a self-publishing author there are a lot of decisions to make but this is one of the first you need to think on.
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