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My Experience on KDP Select

Updated on April 13, 2012

It’s been three months since I put one of my new books on the KDP select program. It’s been good exposure and something I wanted try my hand in. I thought I would put each new book on KDP select first before distributing to other channels but I’ve changed my mind about that. I must admit that I’m glad I didn’t pull my other self published books from the other channels into the program as I would’ve lost out on many sales from other places if I had.

I joined KDP select because I wanted to try it out. I wanted to see how it would go for me. You see, people will experience it differently and I wasn’t prepared to go with someone else’s statistics, I had to go with my own. While I managed to be in the top 20 while it was free, soon after the short period my book went back to one hundred thousand, something ridiculous like that, making it very hard for anyone to find my book. In the first month I sold twenty books more than I did in previous months, which was fine but nothing big on my scale. I guess it all depends on the author and the type of books but this was my experience.

After the time was up I submitted my book to smashwords and let it go free for sometime. I must admit, smashwords distribution worked out better for me. I sold more books using this distribution than using KDP select. Like I said before, it all depends on the audience and the type of book. Everyone’s book works out differently on different sites.

Would I use KDP select again? Personally my answer would be no. Having my book exclusive to KDP select made me loose out on other sales from other distributors and for me that’s loss of business. I’m in this to write but also to make a career and living out of my writing and I have to do what is best for me. So I’ve come to the conclusion that what is best for me is distributing to all channels. While I’ve heard so many amazing positive stories about how KDP select has worked for other authors, it hasn’t for me. I believe that it would work for people who have quite a good following. I also think it would work for established authors and perhaps new authors too but it isn’t for everyone. I will keep publishing my books on Amazon and all the other channels as this is the way I can make money. I’m sure there are people who are making thousands of dollars using KDP select and I’m happy for them but it didn’t work out that way for me.

I see writing and selling my books as an investment. To put my investment in one venture doesn’t sound like a wise decision. I’m not an investor nor do I claim to make any investments but common sense tells me that you have to spread your investments. Just because someone made a killing taking a risk by putting all their eggs in one basket doesn't mean it will happen to me. But that is just my opinion and I had to put it to the test to get to this conclusion. I had to at least try it out for myself before making any comments on the matter. So after doing this and trying out KDP select I can say that it was a good try out but I will stick to using all the distributing channels.

As a writer whose dream it is to become a full time writer. I must always weigh my options, always make sure what I do is what is best for me. I think this applies to everyone. If KDP select works for you then that is the route you should follow. If on the other hand it doesn’t work for you then like me, you should take a different route. I’m grateful for the opportunity KDP has provided and I know for some people it has really changed their lives. As for me, I will stick with distributing to all channels as they bring me to a worldwide audience that may not have kindles.

To indies authors everywhere, prosperity to you all!


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    • lin8t profile image

      lin8t 5 years ago from United Kingdom

      Hi norbertmercado, what I do is have a series and let the first book go free or 99c and then price the follow on books between $1.99 and $2.99. I also do a lot of short stories that occassionally I let go free for a while. When my book goes free it moves up the sales rank and when I change it back it keeps it's rank instead of loosing it all together. This way more people find your work. If you experiment a bit you will find the best way that suits you.

    • lin8t profile image

      lin8t 5 years ago from United Kingdom

      Thank you Chriswriteshubs

    • norbertmercado profile image

      Norbert L. Mercado 5 years ago

      Hello lin8t,

      Just want to ask how you priced your book when you distributed it through Smashwords. Any advice on effective strategies using Smashwords would be appreciated.


    • ChrisWritesHubs profile image

      ChrisWritesHubs 5 years ago

      I wish you the best of luck getting your books out there! You make some very good points.

    • lin8t profile image

      lin8t 5 years ago from United Kingdom

      Thanks for your comment SimeyC, it's good to try out things. We can never tell where our audience is going to be. It seems diversity works best for me.

    • lin8t profile image

      lin8t 5 years ago from United Kingdom

      Thanks for your comment and voting up LoveToLearn, I agree it's important to test the waters yourself. This way you take full responsibility for all the decisions you make.

    • SimeyC profile image

      Simon Cook 5 years ago from NJ, USA

      I use KDP Select at the moment as I'm learning my trade - I've earned a little money using it so far but will probably diversify and use sites like Smashwords next time!

    • LoveToLearn profile image

      LoveToLearn 5 years ago

      It's so important to test things out before you form an opinion. This is one of the most vital skills a self published author can develop. Voted up!