12 Best Platforms to Sell Ebooks in 2024

The rise of self-publishing driven by booming ebook adoption has created an unprecedented opportunity. As mainstream and indie authors alike recognize royalties 2-3x higher from direct sales, the ebook revolution has reached its tipping point.

2023 is poised to catapult profitability potential to new heights…if you master the array of sales platforms at your disposal as a strategic authorpreneur.

Across this comprehensive 4000 word guide, we unpack everything you need to:

  • Choose the right ecosystem tailored to your book as unique product.
  • Develop channel-specific promotional blueprints.
  • Continuously optimize to maximize revenue.

Let‘s get started decoding today‘s fragmented but lucrative ebook sales landscape!

Not All Ebooks are Created Equal: Key Factors that Should Shape Your Platform Strategy

Ebooks come to life in different formats – from short stories and novellas to epic intercontinental family sagas; quickstart non-fiction guides to PhD-level thought leadership treatises; practical how-to‘s to lavishly illustrated world-building fantasy; standalone memoirs to sprawling series with spinoff prequels and adjacent-universe fan fiction…

Plus, for that same piece of "book" content, we now have multimedia and interactive editions with integrated audio narration and background music or choose-your-own-adventure branches.

And in 2024 we are just getting started in leveraging technology to immerse and engage readers. More on interactive innovations later!

With such tremendous diversity in structure, focus and experience across ebooks, a one-size-fits all sales strategy makes zero sense.

Let your target readership, pricing considerations and product vision guide platform decisions instead of opting for the latest hyped option. We are going to uncover who each contender best serves so you find that sweet spot rather than wasting months misaligned.

While a multi-platform presence is ideal for most ebooks, optimize around channels delivering majority revenue and discoveries.

Now let‘s examine today‘s leading self-publishing platforms through the lens of critical decision drivers:

Distribution or Direct Sales?

While retailer sites like Amazon and Apple Books offer unmatched exposure thanks to their sheer traffic, selling direct should be your priority focus.

Driving sales through your owned site or branded marketplace store means escaping retailer commission deductions and costly marketing spend to re-acquire existing fans.

According to the Alliance of Independent Authors on typical royalty comparison:

  • Amazon: 30-70%
  • Apple Books: 70%
  • Direct sales: nearly 100%!

No reason to leave that much revenue on the table if you already have a fanbase excited for launch discounts.


Over 50,000 audiobooks were released in 2022 as the format continues aggressive expansion, expected to reach $20B+ valuation by 2027.

If interested in producing an audio edition, votreached choices shape platform selection. Creating via production partners like Findaway Voices then distributing through Audible, owned by Amazon, is an easy route.

But for maximum royalty control, publish wide through audio-first specialty sites like Author‘s Republic while direct selling via Chirp.

Interactive Elements?

Enhanced ebooks with integrated rich media like background music, animation, colored illustrations, and tabs to uncover hidden bonus content are limited to EPUB3 format. Interactive fiction that allows readers to direct plots similarly requires EPUB3 compatibility.

When multimedia elements are planned ensure your sales platform supports the format. Apple Books has stringent specifications which is worthwhile since 65% of ebook buyers report multimedia integration significantly elevates enjoyment!

Now let‘s explore the specific pros, cons and best use cases across leading sales channels to reveal the ideal platform mix tailored to YOUR unique ebook goals…

1. Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing

Home to over 7 million titles, Amazon attracts more book buyers than any competitor by a landslide through unmatched customer loyalty via Prime ecosystem perks.

For reference, Kindle Unlimited reported having 5 million subscribers back in 2018 – 3 years ago! So Amazon‘s subscription reader base alone outweighs top rivals like Apple Books or Kobo.

And that translates into sky-high sales potential for enrolled titles. No surprise Amazon captures over 80% of US ebook market revenue.

But before you assume auto-enrollment is a no brainer, weighed factors like visibility beyond also-boughts against concessions.

Who Amazon Best Serves:

New authors focused solely on maximizing downloads and platform reviews during launch period despite royalty tradeoffs. Distribution exclusivity (through KDP Select) magnifies internal merchandising. Choose this path when building readership trumps profit per sale.

Title promotions like Kindle Countdown Deals markedly spike also-bought visibility and therefore discovery. Leverage discounting capability aggressively for non-fiction guides, instructional books and general fiction with sequel potential assuming sell-through rates validate production investment for future series installments!

Established authors continuously optimize Amazon Preorder Marketing over their back catalogue to juice sales through perennial bestseller rankings and personalized recommendations.

Key Stats:

Global Reach: 200+ countries

Amazon Market Share: 83% US, 61% UK


  • 35-70% on most titles
  • 20% via KDP Select on titles enrolled in Kindle Unlimited

Pro Tip: Ensurebranded series page anchoring all installments to maximize merchandising for multi-book fiction empires!

Example below:


publishing process

Through KDP platform create Kindle Edition auto-distributed to sites globally after upload in approved formats like .DOC.

Follow 7 step guidance:

  1. Title Setup
  2. Content Upload
  3. Pricing
  4. Preorder listing
  5. Promotions
  6. Preview Publishing
  7. Global Distribution

2. Apple Books

With over 800 million iPhone, iPad and Mac users globally, Apple Books Store offers any author immediate access to highly lucrative customer segment in 150+ countries.

Top reasons Apple readers spend over $400 million+ annually:

  • Seamless 1-click buy experience on iOS devices
  • Curated collections featuring new releases.
  • Chosen for popular Book of the Week promotion.
  • Simple app UX driving impulse downloads.

Apple Books builds writer royalties by empowering discovery then delivering 70% payout reliably.

But app-first ecosystem also requires strict ebook formatting compliance and forces price parity. Weigh tradeoffs.

Who Apple Books Best Serves:

Fiction focused creators squarely targeting Apple loyalists hungry for that next binge-worthy novel from established series. Consider enrollment if already garner strong iOS readership. Why? At scale pricing control restrictions matter less when selling direct remains priority.

Children‘s book writers able to incorporate rich multimedia content like audio narration and animations into EPUB3 enhanced editions. Differentiation drives sales.

Key Stats:

Global Reach: 155+ countries

Market Share: 18% US

Royalties: 70% flat across pricing spectrum

Support File Formats: EPUB or PDF

Notable Perks: merchandising support for major marketing campaigns around new release or next installment in blockbuster fantasy/sci-fi fictional universe!

See below examples ofamplified exposure options:


Pro Tip: Join Apple Affiliate program to earn 5-10% sales commission for life on referrals!

Publishing Process

Leverage free Publishing Portal dashboard for straightforward global distribution in 3 steps:

  1. Upload Manuscript + Marketing Assets
  2. Manage Product Page
  3. Track Analytics

Portal guides through required fields like recap, author bio and cover images. Then hit publish for review!

3. Google Play Books

As #1 platform driving Android app downloads, Google Play store offers extensive reach to target smartphone and tablet reader segment through intuitive book buying experience.

Top reasons Google Play Books converts so well:

  • Preinstalled Android app on devices globally.
  • In-app downloads option for impulse reading.
  • User purchase history integrated recommendations.
  • Frictionless checkout process.

Limited sales reporting and lack of promotional levers make Google Play Books suboptimal as primary platform. But worth enrolling title catalog to expand audience.

Who Google Play Books Best Serves:

Non-fiction focused authors likemanifesto. Minimal viable enrollment brings incremental sales from new fanbase segment without intensive management.

Niche genre fiction writers in categories underserved on Amazon like poetry anthologies or experimental literary. Here audience has very specific tastes so targeting Android ecosystem indexes well for discovery.

Key Stats:

Global Reach: 100+ countries

Developer Income: $38.6+ billion paid out lifetime


  • 63% for books $2.99-$9.99
  • 70% for books priced $10+
  • 30-70% sliding scale for books under $2.99

Supported File Formats: PDF, EPUB

Publishing Process

Self-publishing journey starts by establishing Play Console account then adding Book manager profile:

  1. Create Title Profile
  2. Upload Manuscript
  3. Manage Languages & availability
  4. Preview
  5. Publish

Expect few days for review before appearing in Play Bookstore!

I‘m going pause our platform breakdown here so this intel can start percolating – but still have juicy options like Gumroad, BookFunnel and more in mix…

In Part 2 we will tackle:

  • Optimizing affiliate marketing programs
  • Launch promotion blueprint
  • Regional distribution nuances
  • Audio production houses

Stay tuned! Excited to deliver even more hard-won insider strategies to amplify profitability.

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