For the royalty factor, Smashwords wins, hands down. They only pay quarterly, but the amount of that royalty surpasses all the others. (Plus they don't use DRM, and you can get any format you like.) This is especially noticeable for 99c short stories, because everywhere else chops the royalties for the small stuff -- and Smashwords doesn't. The PayPal fees come out, then Smashwords hands me 80% of what's left, which at worst gives me about 50c, instead of 30c or 35c.

If you want to know the Also Bought King, that would be Amazon. Hands-down, they are the best at enabling "discoverability" once you hit the magic numbers and get onto the also-bought lists of other books. Most of my sales are sparked by those lists, far as I can tell. (I have to have good art and an intriguing description, of course!)

For Also Bought runners-up, it would be any seller that has Also Bought lists. I feel that having all one's eggs in the Amazon basket is a bit precarious, for my tastes. (One alteration in their Also-Bought algorithms and my sales there could plummet, for instance.) So if someone prefers the Nook, there's nothing wrong with potentially giving the books a boost there. The drawback is that I use Smashwords as my distributor to everywhere but Amazon, which means that if I discover a flaw in a book that needs fixing... Depending on the distributor in question, it may take ages for the fix to propagate! (Kobo used to be really really really awful about this. Barnes and Noble is currently the king of "oh, we'll get that book up maƱana... if we feel like it.") The payments are also a bit... delayed, since Smashwords can't pay me till the distributors pay them.

So really, my answer gives the choice back to the fan: pick what makes you happiest! There are authorial advantages in all cases. (And the best advantage is if you choose to review your purchases, on your blog/journal, GoodReads, or wherever. *grin*)

Thank you for asking!
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elizabethmccoy

March 2015

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