This article covers a list of 20 online platforms to self publish your book. Writing and publishing a book is not so easy. One can easily write a book but when it comes to get it published that’s where the real hurdles begin. You have to knock the doors of publishers, pull up your contacts, and pitch your book. Still, the majority of books get rejected especially if the writers are new and haven’t published anything else before.
But, thanks to the Internet, you can publish your book as an eBook on the web. Nowadays, there are lots of online platforms where you can self publish your book. These platforms either take royalties or charge a one-time fee for publishing. Some of them also come with a monthly subscription plan. Most of these platforms have proper editors where you can write and maintain your books and rest are just an eBook publishing platform with their own eBook store. So, let’s dive in the list and check out these platforms one by one.
Also read: Free Online Novel Writing Tools For Writers
List of Online Platforms to Self Publish Your Book
I’m going to sort these online self book-publishing platforms in three categories. You can browse the list by the desired category and find a good platform to bring your work to the world.
Self-Publishing Platforms with Royalty
Kindle Direct Publishing
Kindle Direct Publishing is a free self-publishing platform from Amazon Kindle. It is a full-fledged tool where you can create and publish eBooks. This tool has an editor where you can write your book, add proper formatting to the manuscript, and create a book cover.
It is very simple and straightforward to use. With your existing Amazon ID, you can sign in to the tool and start writing your book. If you already have a soft copy of the book, you can just paste it to the editor and add formatting. After that, you have to create a cover for the book and add a price as well. Once done, you can publish your book. If your book meets all the KDP content and quality guidelines it would appear on the Kindle eBook store within 24-48 hours of publishing.
On KDP, you have all the rights to your book and with the right to make changes to your book at any time. You earn 70% (eBook) and 60% (on paperback) of royalty on the sales of your book worldwide. You can read more about KDP’s eBook and paperback publishing here.
Barnes & Noble Press
Barnes & Noble Press has an online self-publishing platform. This platform has a simple procedure to publish eBooks as well as paperbacks. It is solely for publishing, it does not provide any editor to create a book first. In terms of publishing, it’s more like Kindle Direct Publishing where your book is sold on the Barnes & Noble Press website and their local retailers.
To get your book, first, you have to select whether you want to sell eBook or paperback. After that, you have to upload your files. Barnes & Noble Press provides you guidelines to help you format the interior of the book along with creating a cover. Once all is done, you can submit it for publishing. Then, B&N processes your book and publishes it on the website within 72 hours. You get 65% royalties on the sale of your book.
Apart from that, B&N also has marketing and promotional options which you can use to maximize your reach and get more buyers. Get more information on publishing and promotions here.
Kobo Writing Life
Kobo is an online book store where you buy and sell books online. It’s a Japanese store with availability and audience all over the world. Kubo features a huge catalog of books with over 5 million titles.
Kubo has a self-publishing platform that takes royalties when you sell your book on it. To publish your book on Kubo first you have to create an account. Then, you can upload your manuscript there and follow simple steps to publish the book. Once done, it takes up to 72 hours to add your book to Kubo’s catalog. Kubo provides you 70% royalties on the sales with all the rights to the book. It also helps you track the sales by countries.
Draft2Digital is another royalty-based online self-publishing platform. This procedure of publishing your book on Draft2Digital is similar to the other platforms. The best thing about this platform is its editing tools that automatically format your script to professional book format.
This platform provides you a handy editor to create and format the manuscript. The editor has layout templates which automatically converts your manuscript to the selected style. After creating the final draft, you can add pricing and just publish your book Draft2Digital’s store which is available worldwide.
To help you reach your audiences, Draft2Digital provides easy-to-use promotional tools where you can send emails to readers and promote your book on the store. In exchange for all this, it takes 10% royalties from each sale and helps you track the sales as well.
Smashwords is another popular online self-publishing platform where you can publish your book on the online store and also send to third-party retailers for online sale on other platforms covering Apple Books, B&N, Kobo, Scribd, Tolino, Gardners, CloudLibrary, Fnac, and more.
Publishing book on Smashwords is very simple. First, you have to sign up on the platform. Upon sign up, it provides you guidelines with instructions on how to format your script as in a DOC file. Then, you can just upload the DOC file here, add information, and publish the book.
If you don’t want to do all this, you can go with a $40 plan where you just have to provide your manuscript and Smashwords will take care of the rest. This platform offers you 80% of each sale on Smashwords and 60% of each sale on other third-party stores.
Lulu is a platform to create, publish, sell and buy books online where you can self publish eBook and paperback book. This platform has a group of distributions (online and offline) where it sends the books for sale. It is a one-stop solution to create, format, publish, and distribute your book worldwide.
First, you have to create an account on Lulu. Then, you can choose what type of book you want to get published. You can either create an eBook or go with a more traditional paperback option. In each case, it provides you proper guides to which you can download to know everything from creating a book to get it distributed.
The process is fairly simple; you can just paste/import your manuscript to Lulu editor and then add proper formatting depending on the publishing type you choose. Once done, the editor creates an EPUB/PDF version of your book and calculates the distribution fees along with Lulu’s commission. It also shows you the net revenue for each distributor. At this point, you can pay the amount and get your book published. For further information, you can check Lulu’s eBook and paperback retail distribution requirements here.
Self-Publishing Platforms with 1-time Fee
Blurb is an online platform where you can create your storefront to sell your books, eBooks, and magazines online. This platform packs all the essential tools to help you create and format the book. It also has an editor where you can design the cover for the book. You can simply upload your manuscript to the tool and then format it as per the template you are targeting. After that, you can add the pricing and description for the book and submit it to publish on the platform.
In order to self-publish your book on Blurb, you have to pay a fee depending on the length of your book. It starts at $40.99 for 20 pages with $0.35 per additional page. Apart from that, you can create an eBook for other third-party online book stores (Apple Books, Kindle Store, etc.) with a $9.99 conversion fee.
NotionPress is another online platform to self-publish your book in India. This platform has thousands of community members with distribution in over 140 countries all around the globe.
NotionPress has two packages to self-publish your book: Xpress Publishing and Guided Publishing. In both packages, you own the 100% rights to your book. The Xpress Publishing package is for self-publishing your book as a paperback on the NotionPress store that offers you 70% profits with access to book marketing tools. Whereas, the Guided Publishing package offers 100% profit and lets you sell your book in three formats (paperback, ebook & hardcover) on over 30000 stores worldwide. It also includes access to book marketing services to promote your book online.
Prowess Publications is a one-stop solution to self-publish your book. It provides a complete package including all the services and tools you possibly need to publish and sell your book. The package includes professional typing, designing, editing, marketing, book printing, and eBook creation.
All you have to do is provide the script for the book and this service will take care of the rest. This service publishes your book on its own store and distributes it to all the major bookselling platforms including Apple Books, Kobo, B&N, Google Play, OverDrive, Amazon, and Flipkart. You can get the complete pricing details along with the royalty calculator here.
BookBaby is another self-publishing platform where you can print eBooks and other digital prints. Unlike other platforms, this is a printing service where you can print your book to paperbacks and convert to digital formats for various online book-selling platforms including Kindle Store, Apple Books, Google Play Books, and more.
You can just upload your manuscript and select the target platform or/and paperback. Then, you can just add formatting as per the platform and order the print/conversion of your book. Once the book is ready, you can check out the BookBaby bookselling options to sell your books on various popular online store and retailers. The printing price depends on the length of the book and publishing prices depends on the platform, distributors, and retailers.
INscribe Digital is a digital distribution service that can help you distribute and sell books. This service is best to use in combination with BookBaby to print and distribute paperback as well as a digital edition of your books. It provides you access to thousands of eBook subscriptions services, eBook stores, libraries, distributors, and retailers all around the world.
You can use BookBaby to create paperback prints and eBook versions of your book. Then, you can use the INscribe Digital to distribute and sell your book to particular regions or worldwide. This service has dynamic pricing that depends on the service you need.
Self-Publishing Platforms with Subscription Plan
PayLoadz is an online platform to sell digital goods including eBooks, audiobooks, and much more. It is available in over 180 countries with local currency support. It’s not an ideal primary platform to publish a book but to reach the maximum audience, you can publish your book here.
This platform has a month Subscription plan of $19.95. In this plan, you can simply sell your books to the PayLoadz’s eCommerce store. You can sell multiple books along with other items that it supports. Since it’s not specially designed for books, it doesn’t offer any rich editor or template. You have to make a final draft all on your own which you can upload to this store. Then, you can mention your pricing and publish the book.
Payhip is another eCommerce platform to buy and sell digital products online. It’s a nice site that you can use as a secondary platform to sell your book and reach more audience worldwide. It works very similarly to PayLoadz, first, you have to create an account to list your book on the store. Then, you can just upload the final manuscript of your book. Make sure the book has proper formatting because Payhip doesn’t offer any tool to edit it upon upload. After uploading, simply add the description along with pricing and submit your book. Within a few hours, your book would appear (as a digital copy i.e., eBook) in the online store.
This platform has a free plan where it charges a 5% transaction fee for each sale. It also has monthly premium plans starting at $29 that reduce the transaction fee to 2%.
FastSpring is another online store for digital products and goods including audiobooks, eBooks, etc. This platform also has a worldwide reach with support for 20 currencies and 15 languages. Instead of having a static Subscription plan, this platform features dynamic plans based on what you want to sell. Again, it’s more like a secondary platform to sell your book worldwide so don’t expect any features that you get with a dedicated publishing platform.
To publish on this platform, all you have to do is create an account and upload the finalize manuscript of the book. Then, you can add the pricing and move to the publishing where you get the pricing you have to pay for the service.
Gumroad is an online eCommerce platform for creators like writers, artists, and more. This platform is not only for selling products but also helps you build an audience. It offers a 10-day product launch program that helps you launch your product on the store along with a 30-day audience building platform to help you build your audience on the platform. You can enroll in this program and sell your ebook on Gumroad. You can also publish your book yourself which only takes a few minutes although it does take up to 3 days to appear on the store.
This platform has a free and a Pro plan. The free plan comes with transaction fees on each sale whereas the Pro plan does not have any transaction fees. The Pro plan starts at $10 per month.
Scribd is a popular Subscription-based reading platform featuring various types of documents and eBooks. It is one of the best platforms that you can use to reach the reader community to maximize the reach of your book however you won’t earn money from here.
In order to add your book to Scribd, you have to create an account and subscribe to the $8.99 monthly plan. Then, you can upload your book and publish it. If you don’t want to provide your book for free, you can upload a sample and provide the links to buy the full version. Scribd also has publishing partners which offer the same service. You can either publish through those partners or do it manually by yourself.
E-junkie is an online marketplace to buy and sell online goods and services. The platform is free to browse and buy the product but you need a Subscription plan to sell your products. The Subscription plan starts at $5 per month and doesn’t charge any transaction fees.
To publish your book on E-junkie first you have to subscribe to its monthly plan. Then, you can upload your book in digital format, add a description with pricing and publish it to the store. You can also add a landing page to the book and create custom promotions and discount codes for your book.
Selz is another eCommerce platform where you can sell your eBooks online. This platform packs lots of tools and options for digital fulfillment and customer relationship management. The CRM is the main highlight of Selz that lets you provide support to the customer and get their feedback.
Like all the other platforms in this category, you have to subscribe to the monthly plan to sell your products. The plan starts at $26 per month that offers access to all the tools with integration with Facebook and Google Shopping. You can simply upload your book here with pricing and publish it on the platform. Furthermore, you can use the additional tools for promotions and get your book listed in the various sale channels.
Shopify is a popular eCommerce store for digital goods and services. Apart from its own online stores, it supports various sale channels including Instagram, Facebook, Amazon, eBay, etc. In order to post your book on the store, you first have to create an account and buy a subscription plan. The plan starts at $29 per month.
After that, you can add your product to the store. This platform has over 70 responsive themes which you can use for your ebook. You can simply select the theme and upload your ebook. After that, you can add a price for the ebook and publish it to the store. Shopify also has a mobile app that helps you track all your sales and provides sale analytics.
FetchApp is another platform to sell digital goods and services which can be used to sell eBooks online. This platform has an absolutely free plan that limits the storage space to 5MB along with up to 25 orders per day. Since eBooks are generally small in size, you can try this plan initially and if you see any potential you can go with the premium plan to remove these limits. The premium plan starts at $10 per month.
These are the 20 self-publishing platforms where you can sell your book and reach the maximum audience. Depending on the format of publishing and type of service, you can go with any of these platforms. If you publishing your book for the first time, go with the royalty-based or 1-time fee platforms. Then, you can try the subscription-based platform to reach more audience.