Smashwords has signed an agreement with Barnes & Noble to distribute Smashwords ebooks.
As you might imagine, we're thrilled.
Until today, it was difficult if not impossible for many independent authors and publishers to gain such mainstream digital distribution. Now with Smashwords, virtually any deserving author, anywhere in the world, can receive broader distribution for their ebook.
We trust this is good news for Barnes & Noble as well because it makes thousands of new titles accessible to their customers. As any large retailer can attest, you want to carry the broadest possible selection for your customers yet it's virtually impossible to strike relationships with every individual author or publisher who walks in the door.
Even with ebooks, where an online store can offer virtually limitless online shelf space, it's still a challenge to sign on promising authors, because each business relationship requires technical setup, contracts, accounts payable systems, automated data feeds, sales tracking and more. We're an onramp that makes it easy for Barnes & Noble to accept and sell books from indie authors and publishers.
This is an important milestone for Smashwords. 15 months ago when we launched, we were an ebook publishing platform for self-published authors. Earlier this year we opened our services to publishers. And today, we expand our role to that of an ebook distributor as well.
Smashwords ebooks are now distributed via multiple online channels, including Smashwords.com, Stanza (the e-reading app used by 2 million + people on the iPhone/iPod Touch), Aldiko (for Google Android phones) and soon, the Barnes & Noble network (Barnesandnoble.com, Fictionwise, Ereader app, others).
If you're an author or publisher, I invite you to join with us today. We'll make it easy for you to publish and distribute your book to a worldwide audience. Our services are free. As the author or publisher, you keep up to 85% of the net (net = proceeds to Smashwords multiplied by .85). We offer you free social media-enabled tools to help you take control over your marketing and promotion.
As part of this development, we're creating a Premium Catalog, which contains Smashwords titles that meet the mechanical requirements for distribution. We posted a page to inform our authors and publishers about how to gain inclusion in the Premium Catalog: http://www.smashwords.com/distribution. Pardon our dust. These guidelines will surely evolve as we work out the inevitable kinks and bugs along the way.
Stay tuned. We're just getting started.