As part of our 2013 Indie Author Series, you've heard me brag about Amazon's contribution to my book sales as well as my ability to promote and market my books. You've also heard my opinion as it relates to the minimal efforts Barnes & Noble puts forth. This week, you're going to hear what I think about Smashwords.
For me, Smashwords will always hold a special place in my heart because it's the site where I learned publishing without an agent or a traditional publisher was a possibility. I will forever be thankful for their contribution to indie authors.
For anyone who wants to publish an eBook, Smashwords Style Guide is a must read. It helps you format your book to the specifications of iTunes, Barnes & Noble's, Sony, Kobo, and Diesel. Take it from me... those specifications are nearly impossible to meet without step-by-step instructions.
Smashwords also offers a one-stop shop where indie authors can upload their books, and they will do all the work for them, making their eBooks available on any and all eBook sites. I take full advantage of their offering with the exception of (you guessed it) Amazon and Barnes & Noble. I personally manage those sites, but with Smashwords' assistance, I'm left with only three sites to manage even though my books are available everywhere.
I also LOVE Smashwords coupon manager. I can gift ebooks to people, and it doesn't cost me a dime. That is not true for Amazon or Barnes & Noble's. If I want to gift a Kindle or Nook book, I have to pay for it (at least... I've been paying for them). With Smashwords coupon manager, I can give away as many as I like.
In summary, Smashwords is committed to indie authors, and it shows. We can achieve things we never would have been able to achieve if it were not for them. For that, I'm thankful to Mark Coker and his dedicated team.