Ebooks as Digital Downloads
I have been selling my ebooks through sites such as Amazon and Smashwords for some time now, years even, but I have recently been thinking about selling them directly, on my own site. Instead of sending people to Amazon’s site, and risk them being distracted by all the other books that Amazon is going to show them, I can keep them on my site, Spiralcat Books.
It took me a while to get my head round how to do this, but I figured the best way was one of the sites that takes care of all the technical stuff for you. I was immediately tempted by Payhip.com, for example. They claim that they offer digital downloads minus the technical headaches. Specifically:
Payhip is your all-in-one solution to sell your ebooks, software and all types of digital files. If you can save it, then you can sell it. Everything you need to sell your work and grow your business.
The site asked for my email address, a password, and my payment details for getting my money, but that was when I encountered a hitch. I was told I could only be paid through a business Papypal account, not a private one. I very much do not want this, so I had to drop Payhip and look at some of their competitors.
Next I looked at Selz, but their free plan has a maximum of five products, and I have already written many more books than that. I didn’t even bother signing in with them, so I have no idea if they try to force you to change your PayPal account the way Payhip does.
Next I looked at Robora, but their site says:
Robora is currently only available for those living in the United States. Currently payouts for US customers happen via direct deposit, so be sure to add your bank info on the settings page.
As I live in Italy, this rules out Robora, at least for me.
Other sites I looked at but decided not to bother with included: E-Junkie because they want five dollars a month for their cheapest plan. PayLoadz who don’t have an obvious pricing page, but their service seems to cost a flat rate of twenty dollars.
Then I came across FetchApp, which claims to offer a free plan. They make a big thing of being free and simple:
All premium FetchApp plans make no restriction on the number of products, files, orders, users, or any other feature. Sell as much as you’d like without worry of costly commissions or order limitations. There’s nothing to install, no contracts, and plans can be changed or cancelled anytime. Welcome to FetchApp!
Unfortunately it turned out to be a platform rather than what I was looking for, which is a sell button. So I kept looking, and I found Paddle. They say:
At Paddle we pride ourselves on our transparent pricing. In order to sell through us, we charge 5% + 50c on each transaction. This is outlined on our pricing page. There are no fixed monthly fees in order to sell via the Paddle platform.
But again, this is a platform rather than a button, and they don’t even host files for download. Next I found Simple Goods which has a free option, but it is limited to just three products.
In the end, I just threw up my hands and gave up. I think the best strategy will be to work on the website, get some actual visitors, and then worry about integrating buttons to actually sell the books. In the mean time I’ll just send people to Amazon like I have been doing for years.
My Latest Book
A small Californian town becomes the scene of a mystery involving UFO sightings, terrifying supernatural forces, and a new girl in town. A few of the local children begin to understand that there’s more going on than meets the eye as the story continues with the discovery of a portal to another world, a sinister monster, unnerving supernatural forces, and kung fu. Cosmic Girl is a love letter to the 1970s, a sci-fi adventure, and a horror story with a terrifyingly sinister monster.