If you’re willing to experiment with multiple distributors, many of these ebook distributors have “opt out” features, enabling you to use more than one distributor to maximize your sales revenue. For example, you can sell directly to some bookstores (like Amazon through KDP, or Kobo through Kobo Writing Life) and then use a distributor who earns a commission (like Smashwords) for the remaining bookstores.
Smashwords will distribute to all online bookstores. They have no sign-up fees but instead make their money through a 15% commission on book sales. Smashwords lets you opt out of some distribution, which lets you use Smashwords along with other ebook distributors. They also offer a really useful, free style guide.
Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) (kdp.amazon.com)
KDP publishes more ebooks than any other ebook distributor, and it’s a great choice for anyone who wants to sell directly to Amazon (earning up to 70% royalty on the list price) without having to commit to Amazon exclusively. Many writers will choose to use KDP in conjunction with another distributor.
- See KDP's printing guide.
KDP Select (kdp.amazon.com/select)
KDP Select is an option for KDP self-publishers. In exchange for Amazon exclusivity, your ebook is added to their KDP Select subscription service and you’re given additional free promotional tools, like sale promotions. This is a popular choice for authors looking to increase their following in a genre with lots of subscription-based readers.
Kobo Writing Life (kobo.com/writinglife)
Kobo’s ebook self-publishing platform is great to use in conjunction with a larger ebook distributor, provided that distributor allows you to opt out of the Kobo sales channel. This platform is free, easy to use, and it means that you can bypass added distribution fees.