Self Publishing: KDP only or Going Wide
Self Publishing: KDP only or Going Wide

Self Publishing: KDP only or Going Wide

When you choose Self-publishing your own work, one of the most important decisions is for you to understand how you should proceed – Wide or KDP only. You must understand that this is in reference to your E-book only. Wide means that this will be available on several different plantforms including Smashwords, Applie Ibook stores, KITABOO, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Draft2Digital, Lulu, and more.

If you choose to go the route of KDP only – your Ebook cannot be found on other platforms – and if it is…you could be in violation of your argrement and could lose Amazon privilages.

It is important to look at your marketing strategy and how you plan to get your book out.

You will have many authors who find something that works for them. Remember, if you choose to start with KDP, you can change your mind at a later date and visa versa. Just make sure you finish your agreement with Amazon first.

KDP Only

KDP stands for Kindle Direct Publishing and it has everything to do with Amazon.

KDP is available for every author whether you choose to go wide or not. As you fill out the information such as price, content, book cover, and more, you will need to choose whether or not you go wide.

Using Amazon is one of the best choices you can do. But remember, there are millions of books sold on Amazon. You will need a great Book Cover, Premise, Hook, and Marketing Strategy to be successful.

When publishing with KDP you can choose two options – kindle or paperback. You can choose to do both, but you will need different formatting, book cover, etc for both.

Once you pick KDP Only, Amazon gives you some advantages. But you are promising to be exclusive and not sell your Ebook on other retailers. There are some things like KDP Select and Kindle Unlimited. This allows you a better chance at marketing with small deals and discounts you can offer. Additionally, if a reader is part of the Amazon Prime program, they can read the book and you can collect a portion of the KENP read program.

KDP Select lasts for 90 days. At the end of the 90 days, you can opt out or you will be automatically renewed.

Please remember that while digital copies of the book can only be sold through Amazon:

–  A 10% “sample” can be made available outside of the Kindle Store.
–  You can still distribute print books in other locations
–  Copies of your book, in digital form, can be emailed to reviewers.

Kindle Unlimited is a program that allows you to read all the books you can.

It is for the reader side of things but the author gets benefits as well. The reader signs up for $9.99 a month and can read as many Ebooks as they want. They can test a book and see if it is what they want. Additionally, the reader receives emails that introduces books that may meet their needs. It is an additional aspect of marketing.

What does the author get?  You get a portion of each page read by those using Kindle Unlimited. It isn’t a “sale” of your book but you might get 100 page reads or 100,000 page reads depending on your genre, number of books, and other factors. You will get a small amount (changes every month) for every page reads. Trust me…it adds up over time.


Going Wide

Remember this is essenailly KDP plus other locations. It doesn’t mean that if you go wide, you can’t still sell your book on Amazon. However, you don’t benefit from the Prime readers, KDP Select, or Kindle Unlimited. These are the same readers but they will have to purchase your book and you can’t do a discount or get page reads.

However, you can have access to other marketing and selling avenues. Smashwords, Applie Ibook stores, KITABOO, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Draft2Digital, Lulu, and more have their own marketing options and plenty of readers. Amazon is a huge book store, but some readers prefer getting their books from someone else. You will need to tap into this market.

Here are some other reasons why you might consdier going wide: In some countries, Amazon isn’t as dominant as it is in the US and sometimes not even availble. Many successful self-pub authors have become well known because of their presence outside of Amazon because they were wide. You will have the opportunity to hit bestseller lists that don’t include Amazon.

In Canada, Germany, and Austrialia – Amazon isn’t the top seller. Kobo, Tolino, or Apple Books are doing a great job.

Amazon can be fickle. You might have a top ranking and lots of readers, then somethng changes, and you loose some of it. That it harder to do when you are wide. If you find avenues to build up your audience, they will likely stick with you longer.


There are pros and cons to KDP only and going wide. We advise our authors to do both. Try out both ends of things and see what works for you. The initial exposure in KDP Select is much greater for marketing, and you earn higher royalties from KU reads as well. But after that, it’s about building your reader base.

Look at both sides. Writing a book is the easy part. Afterward, it is about exposure and marketing. Your stradegy must look at both options and make a decisoon what suits you the best. It is perfectly okay to make a change six months or a year after you publish.