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How To Get Your eBooks On Amazon’s Kindle And Barnes & Noble Nook

I’ve been putting the finishing touches on my next ebook to be released very soon, called The Ultimate Tech Guide For Travelers, which will also be available on the two predominant e-Readers – Amazon’s Kindle and the Barnes & Noble Nook. Getting any ebooks you may have written or coming up on either platform is fairly easy, with a few caveats.


While you won’t make quite as much from a given sale (Amazon takes 30% and B&N 40%) you’ll have access to a much broader audience who can potentially find what you’ve written. Both Amazon and B&N let you post ebooks for free, here’s how.

Hard Copy Or Not

booksPublishing ebooks only, that is without a hard copy option, is free and a much more straightforward process than selling physical books. Those of you looking to have hard copy editions of your ebooks available as well can do that using a host of online publishers like Lulu. You’ll also need to purchase an ISBN number (for sale in the US) at a minimum to publish on either Amazon or B&N; that costs around $100 and distribution is done by the publisher for a fee (~$75).

Selling ebooks on Amazon or B&N (and you should really publish to both instead of just one) doesn’t require an ISBN or any other addition to a standard PDF of your ebook.

amazon kindleHow To Publish eBooks To Amazon’s Kindle

You can self-publish your ebooks to Amazon using their Digital Text Platform. You’ll have to certify that the ebook is your original work and create a description that will be displayed on your Amazon page (which will look like this). All you need is a standard Amazon account to get started or to create a free one.

  • You’ll be asked if you want to use Digital Right Management (DRM) protection for your ebook. That will prevent it from being able to be viewed on other devices or computers and may cut down on illegal sharing; I’d recommend it.
  • Also be prepared with a fairly large image for your ebook that will be displayed on your Amazon page.
  • Amazon is particular about the format of your ebook – make sure it’s aligned vertically and mostly text; fancy graphics don’t do well on the Kindle and might be a reason your ebook is rejected from the store.

Once your ebooks are approved after a 2-3 business day period, you can begin working on improving their search ranking.

Begin Improving Your ebook’s Amazon Search Ranking

Even before your ebook has been approved by Amazon you can begin working on making it easier to find for potential customers. A good description outlining what you ebook is about, as well as 5 descriptive keyword tags make your ebook much more visible to Amazon’s internal search. Have your friends and family (those with Amazon accounts) add reviews and ratings as well.

  • I would be happy to return the favor if you’ve read and would be willing to do a review of Overcoming The 7 Major Obstacles To Traveling The World on either Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

Amazon will automatically create a sample version of your ebook Kindle users can use to preview it before purchasing.

barnes and noble nookHow To Publish eBooks To Barnes & Noble Nook

Much like the process for Amazon’s Kindle, ebooks are easily submitted to the Barnes & Noble Nook store. Using their PubIt service you can upload you ebook file for consideration and approval, which usually takes about 3-5 business days. Barnes & Noble is a little more flexible about the format of your ebook although it’s still wise to give a mostly-text and graphic free version for the Nook.

  • Tweaking your Barnes & Noble ebook page for better rankings in their search is almost identical to Amazon, except B&N is a bit more integrated with Facebook (another place where many “likes” will go far).

Barnes & Noble will also make your ebook part of their “LendMe” program, which lets Nook users lend out the ebook to others for 14 days (although during that time the ebook isn’t available to the lender).

Why Publish To Both Stores

Neither Amazon or Barnes & Noble have any restrictions to publishing to other stores and it can only benefit you to use both since the Kindle and Nook represent a combined 70% of the market share. Ebooks are also now 15% of all books sold so put your ebooks in the two stores where people are buying them – of course in addition to your own sites as well.

[photos by: libraryman (eReaders), Patrick Gage (books), cubicgarden (Amazon Kindle), AMagill (Barnes & Noble Nook)]

{ 6 comments… add one }
  • Nathan - As We Travel November 13, 2010, 06:28

    great info Anil – is this publishing option available for people outside of America? How are payments processed etc?

    • Anil P. November 13, 2010, 06:35

      Yes, it works outside of the US as well; the restrictions are on where the ebooks can be sold. For most, Europe, UK, and US aren’t a problem. Payments are processed by both as either direct deposit to a bank account (which is free) or via physical check (but there’s a small fee associated with it).

  • Nancie November 17, 2010, 00:21

    This is very useful. The only books I buy in paper format anymore are photography books and maybe very localized publications. If I can access a book through an e-reader, I’ll buy it if it interests me. I would not even consider the same book, if it’s only available in paper.

    The only downside I can see to having an e-book delivered via an e-book reader is that you’ll not be able to get a refund, if it turns out to be a piece of junk. Amazon does not give refunds. I don’t know about B & N. I’ve bought e-books in the past that have turned out to be absolute junk. The beauty of purchasing them through click bank is that I can get a refund.

    • Anil P. November 17, 2010, 03:17

      B&N does let you preview ebooks so you can check them out before purchasing as does Amazon. Might be a good alternative as well.

  • Heidi December 10, 2010, 09:17

    This is very informative and useful. Thanks for posting! I plan on writing and selling e-books so I will be referring to this.

    • Anil P. December 10, 2010, 12:20

      I’d be interested in hearing more about your ebooks once they’re closer to launch. Feel free to touch base here and let me know 🙂

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