Lots of savvy readers are already familiar with Bookfunnel. If you’ve ever signed up for a free novel offered by an author, been part of an author’s review team, or participated in big group giveaways, chances are your ebook was delivered by a service called Bookfunnel.
When I first became an Indie author and wanted to give away free copies of my books to select readers and friends, I learned that Amazon expected me to buy my own ebooks from them and send them as gifts.
Pay someone else for my work? That’s the quickest way to go broke I’d ever encountered.
It became clear (fast!) that I needed a way to deliver my books to whom I wanted, when I wanted. That’s when I discovered Bookfunnel, a tool that allows authors to send books (and excerpts, free samples, bonus materials and contest prizes) to selected readers.
It’s that simple and that important.
Important, because large online booksellers ultimately control access, distribution, and pricing policies of books on their sites. Case in point: Did you know that Amazon does NOT allow authors to distribute free books on its site? Authors must upload books to another major retail site and then ask Amazon to price match, and there are even restrictions on that.
Full disclosure, All in, the first installment of the Casino Players Saga, is price matched on Amazon, but frequently reverts to its original price without warning or reason. Not only does this confuse my readers, it makes me reluctant to tell them about my ‘free’ book on Amazon.
Authors and our loyal readers need a better way.
Take another look at what you have, and do more and better with it
That’s one truth that emerged for me while trying to stay afloat during the pandemic. Speaking for myself, 2020 was not the year to take (more) risks or make new investments and evaluate them. I needed to do better with what I already had and stretch it further than I’d done previously.
In that frame of mind, I spent what little time I had last year revamping my author platform. Among other things, I stopped being exclusive to Amazon’s Kindle program and decided to sell my books on all the major platforms, including my own recently revamped website.
As an author, I’d toyed with the idea of selling books on my website, but the desire came with a laundry list of worries, especially all the back-end tech required to make it a reality.
When Bookfunnel added support for delivering digital sales of ebooks to their capabilities, it was great news for authors like me, because it removed many technical hurdles, including delivery and tech support.
Selling online also gives authors the space and freedom to control their own platforms, however tiny. The ability to create exclusive offers for only my most valuable readers is huge but also impossible when working through major booksellers.
Don’t get me wrong, I still sell on the major platforms. Afterall, I want my stories to reach as many people as possible. But having this tiny little corner of cyberspace to do things my way gives me peace of mind. You can check out my tiny beginnings at https://payhip.com/AnnabethSaryuAuthor
What’s in it for readers
Now you know about Bookfunnel and why authors use it. But why should readers?
1.Chances are, you already have. Lots of authors use Bookfunnel to give away books, excerpts and contest prizes.
2. If you value your privacy and aren’t a fan of spam, Bookfunnel does not keep your information themselves. It stays between you and the author. They don’t keep track of what authors you’ve downloaded, they won’t bombard you with endless recommendations, they don’t accept advertising which drives the need to collect personal data. Love it.
3.Tech support. Some ereader brands make it deliberately difficult to read an ebook that you didn’t purchase on their platforms, even if it’s in the correct format. It’s not you! Bookfunnel supports all the major ebook formats and can have you reading quickly. Access the support team by clicking the ‘need help?’ link on the download page.
What about extra steps?
There is a trade-off between privacy and convenience. Because readers don’t have individual accounts with the author or Bookfunnel, the one-click, pay–and–deliver option doesn’t exist.
Purchasing direct involves making a payment on the author’s storefront. The payment triggers a message to Bookfunnel that you’ve purchased a certain book. Bookfunnel sends you a download page, you select your file type, enter your code and settle in to read.
Bookfunnel also offers their own reading app for readers. It’s available on the google play and apple stores. The advantage of that is whenever you receive a book delivered by bookfunnel, win it as prize, or take a review copy, they can all be accessed from one place if they’ve been delivered by Bookfunnel. Sweet…