While you might be ready to self-publish your e-book, have you thought about the marketing strategy yet? You need to reach out to as many people as possible, and it’s not an easy job. This is where aggregators come in.
Who are aggregators?
An e-book aggregator distributes your books to a large number of retailers in return for keeping some percentage of the sales (usually around 15 percent).
Nowadays, aggregators have become synonymous with a distributor.
Pros and cons of an aggregator
Should you choose an aggregator every time? Is there anything you should be wary of?
- If you want to publish with Apple, it may be difficult to do so if you are on your own. An aggregator can help you easily publish your book there.
- It will be easier to track sales. If you work with an aggregator, they will provide you with a dashboard where you can monitor your sales on various platforms.
- Aggregators will handle all the post-submission steps, making your job simpler. Just submit your book to them, and you have nothing more to worry about!
- Most aggregators will convert your manuscript to the required file format for free. If your book conversion is slightly more complex, they may charge a fee, but at least you won’t have to worry about converting the book.
- Sales tracking is not real-time.
- Must wait for almost a month for publication, unlike direct publishing with retailers, which takes 24 to 72 hours.
- Delay in making updated book versions available to the retailers.
The Top e-Book Aggregators Today
The following are well-known e-book aggregators.
- Draft2Digital. They will help you reach retailers such as Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple iTunes, and Scribd. Get started with Draft2Digital here: https://www.draft2digital.com/
- SmashWords. In addition to the retailers mentioned above, SmashWords also distributes to Flipkart, Oyster, Baker, and Tayler Blio. Additionally, SmashWords helps your e-book reach libraries through OverDrive, Library Direct. If you want to publish with SmashWords, visit this link: https://www.smashwords.com/about/how_to_publish_on_smashwords
To enroll as a SmashWords affiliate, you can go here: https://www.smashwords.com/about/affiliate
- iTunes Connect for iBooks. Set up an iTunes account and sell your books through them. Sign up here: https://itunesconnect.apple.com/WebObjects/iTunesConnect.woa/wa/iBooksSignup
You can even combine self-publishing and self-marketing to retailers such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo, then use an aggregator to get your book published through Apple. Or you can self-distribute to Amazon and use SmashWords as an aggregator to distribute to the other markets. In the end, the path you take for distribution is entirely your choice.