My KDP Select enrollment has ended, and I'm trying to figure out if I should re-enroll, or is it better to leave it alone so that I can publish my ebook through Smashwords? It seems that I should go for Smashwords, because that opens up to so many aother outlets for the book. But, Kindle has such a large audience. The answer almost seems obvious to me, that I should deal with Smashwords at this point, but I'm really not sure. What say you?
Here's a link to an article that just came out in the Wall Street Journal about Kindle - and other e-reader devices.
Then I wrote a blog post about the matter. http://allonbooks-thekingdomofallon.blogspot.com/
It's something to consider when re-joining Amazon and how this data mining will effect you as an indie author. Other devices are used, but what effect with the habit of readers downloading 'free' have on future sales?
Thanks for the info Shawn! That's a lot to think about. I've always been very aware of the fact that anything I do related to the internet is being tracked, so that's not a surprise, and it's is why there are certain things I only buy in person, in cash. But I didn't know how in depth the investigations are into the way we're reading. It's just like TV now; they know who's watching what and when. This is the world. Everything is tracked, but all you have to do is tune out & then you can't be tracked anymore (for now anyway). Forgo credit & debit cards, stop using cable & the internet, & ride a bike, then you can't be tracked as easily.
As for making my book available for free, I've done it twice, with 1 day free at a time, & both days which were done about 3 weeks apart, were followed by several days of sales. I just want people to read my book, so I don't mind giving it away for free when I can. I've yet to determine if it devalues the book, because of the sales I got after the freebie days. For us indies, it's still a great time to be independent. The opportunities are boundless. I'm just trying to get my imagination to work with all that is available. In relation to my question, the info in the article still has me questioning which way I should go. My book is available in paperback & ebook formats and I've had way more sales with the ebook than the paperback - but that's my fault because I'm not pushing the paperback the way I should be. I need to get in my audience's face, which is hard for me.
The new world order is SCARY, but until I'm in the position to live off the grid, with my own land, windtower, and solar home (which is my ultimate goal), I have to deal with the new normal.
My 1st book was in pre-release in late 2009 with the official release Jan. 2010, and I've never opted into Select. Instead of worrying about internet sales or Amazon rankings or the fluidity of the online market, I take my paperback books to my audience at events such as book fairs, local festivals and homeschool. I write YA fantasy and historical fiction, so I have something for kids and adults.I encourage authors to meet with their audience. There is nothing like face-to-face interaction, both for the reader and author.
As for devaluing your books, yes, free does that - along with hurting the overall prices of books. I've done multiple posts on this topic cited articles from various industry sources. This includes how 'free e-book's lend to the rise in piracy and conditioning the reader to expect such low prices. In the end, each author makes the choice best for them, but one should also be aware of how such choice affect the broader market.
Thought-provoking article, Shawn.
I've not renewed my KDP Select for my novel C U @ 8 and am opting for Smashwords instead.
Cindy, what were your reasons for not renewing?
I found my sales of my other books actually dropped when I had my free book promotion. I find that I'm rarely buying books myself these days, opting to download ones from the free promotions on offer. If I'm doing that I guess so are many others. I do get steady sales on Smashwords, not nearly as much as Kindle, and as I had never put C U @ 8 on Smashwords electing to let Amazon do their exclusive thing, I thought when the KDP Select expired I'd give it a try with the other platforms. Will just have to wait to see what happens.
As a reader, I have maybe 102 books on Kindle (I just counted:)). Of them 3 were free with the app, and 2 were during free promos. But I've bought the rest for anywhere between .99 to 11.99.
I only have one published book, but I would be curious to see how sales, in regards to promos, would work if I had more.
As an author who did not opt for KDP Select because I also published through LULU and had my books on iBook and Nook as well, I am very interested in how your book did on the Select program? Without it, and with little more than my own efforts to let folks know about them (my friends all bought one or the other) and with author pages on all three sites, my books have not done well. A disappointment, of course, but this kind of publishing is in its infancy and we're all learning. I, too, am wondering, what next?
@Joanne - Keeping in mind I've barely marketed the book - I saw sales everyday for 2 weeks straight after my first, 1 day free promo, and I just did my 2nd promo last week and I'm continuing to see sales from it. Before the promo, I would sell maybe one a week, if that. When I first published I didn't know anything accept I wanted to be heard. Now I'm thinking about sales, just to see how far I can go, so I'm actually trying to market it now.
Joanne, what are your titles?
Thanks for asking, Kitty! The women's contemporary novel is The Solarium. The second novel is a suspense story called Graffiti Grandma. They are very different; however, they both have at least one older woman and a sense of mystery that includes a large cast of characters.
And Kitty, you are I are in the same place--the decisions about marketing. Guess that goes with the job nowadays.