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Posts Tagged ‘Smashwords’

Smashwords To Improve Discovery, Distribution, & Website This Year

After having a record 2012, eBook publishing company Smashwords has plans to improve its publishing platform in 2013. This includes increasing distribution tools, improving metadata and discovery tools, and revamping the Smashwords website, among other things.

Smashwords CEO Mark Coker explained the website redesign on the company blog: “2013 is the year we will give the Smashwords store a facelift, not because we have designs on becoming a large ebook retailer (well, actually, we already are, even though that’s not our focus), but because we think an updated site will help us attract more books and more customers that we can feed to our retail partners.  In 2013, expect to see us start adding links to some of our retail partners, so the millions of visitors to the Smashwords site can enjoy greater freedom to purchase our books and support our authors at their favorite ebook retailers.”

The company saw record growth in 2012. According to Coker, Smashwords added 98,000 new titles to its library, bringing the company’s total library to  190,500 books. The company has been profitable for 27 straight months, and ended 2012 with 19 employees, up from 13 employees that the company ended 2011 with.

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Smashwords Adds Pricing & Library Features

Self-publishing platform Smashwords has a new update which includes a new pricing and library feature. The “Pricing Manager” feature lets authors and publishers set the retail price of their books within the dashboard of Smashwords.

The second new feature is called Library Direct, which enables libraries and consortiums to place large orders with Smashwords and license eBooks in bulk. Smashwords expects these orders to amount to about $30,000 for the set. Authors and publishers will earn 70 percent of the library price, which is higher than the 45 percent earned aggregator partners.

This new feature came out of user surveys. Smashwords’ CEO Mark Coker explains: “…when I surveyed Smashwords authors and publishers, 82% said you believe libraries offer the potential to build your sales (we agree!!).  About 2/3 of you said you’d want to encourage library adoption of your books by pricing your books at or below the regular retail price.” Authors and publishers can decide if they want to participate.

Q&A: Smashwords Founder Mark Coker Predicts Drop in eBook Prices

Smashwords founder Mark Coker created a multi-platform publishing service that helps independent writers and publishers compete with traditional publishing houses.  But now that the major publishers have fixed their prices, it’s the retailers who need the help. Here, Coker dissects the agency model of bookselling and answers the question, what should readers pay for an eBook?

Which retailers are you currently working with?

We’ve signed distribution agreements with Sony, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple, and we’re working on a deal with Amazon.

What about Google?

Read more

Smashwords Moves To Agency Model

Self-publishing online community Smashwords has moved to an agency pricing model for eBooks. This means that authors and publishers that use the site to publish eBooks can set their own retail prices for their titles. This also means an increase in royalties for authors, who will receive 60% of the retail price.

Founder Mark Coker explained in an e-mail: “We’ve renegotiated our ebook distribution agreements with Barnes & Noble, Sony and Kobo.  Effective yesterday, our 10,000+ Smashwords authors and publishers now determine their ebook prices at retail.  No more discounting.  The move also allows us to increase the royalty rates we pay authors and publishers to 60%retail price across the board.”

The agency model has been popularly adopted by major publishing houses in the U.S. and is beginning to be adopted in the UK. What do you think of the agency pricing model?

Smashwords Author Runs Online Contest For New eBook

Self-published author Cheryl Kaye Tardif aka Cherish D’Angelo is running a virtual book tour to support her new eBook called Lancelot’s Lady. As part of the promotion, readers can enter to win a Kobo eReader, as well as free eBooks.

The book is about a nurse who has an affair with a dying billionaire during a Bahamas holiday. Lancelot’s Lady came out on September 18th, via Smashwords, one of the titles, helping the community publishing site reach its 20,000th eBook milestone last week.

The “Cherish the Romance” Virtual Launch Party & Book Tour kicked off today and runs through October 10th. Readers are encouraged to leave a comment on any book blog/site during her tour and share their email address to be entered to win prizes. Anyone who does this will automatically receive a free eBook. The Kobo winner will be announced on October 10th.

Smashwords Publishes 20,000th eBook

Self-publishing website Smashwords published its 20,000th eBook this week. This is up from 6,000 at the end of 2009 and only 140 at the end of 2008. The publisher predicts that it will have published 25,000 titles by the end of the year.

Mark Coker, Founder of Smashwords, blogged about the significant milestone. He wrote: “Do numbers matter? Yes.  Each new author at Smashwords brings more books, and more books bring more readers and more readers bring more authors who bring more books. It’s a virtuous flywheel, catalyzed by the word of mouth of authors and readers who mutually benefit from the dynamic.”

The Smashwords catalog includes many authors such as: Brian S. Pratt, Ruth Ann Nordin, Randolph Lalonde, J.A. Konrath, P.B. Ryan, Shayne Parkinson, Rebecca Forster, Janice Daugharty, Jack Gregory, Ann Somerville, Lynn Flewelling and Carl East.

Coker also argues that indie publishing through these digital channels is growing. He continued: “Until recently, most authors aspired to land a traditional book deal. That sentiment is changing, judging from the emails I receive each week from authors who are done waiting months or years for a publisher to discover them. These authors have decided to turn their back on traditional publishing because they recognize the creative, economic and time-to-market advantages of indie ebook publishing.”