Kindle Unlimited Is It Good For Publishers?

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As a kindle publisher you may have received an email from Amazon informing you of the new kindle unlimited feature that they have rolled out and you might be wondering if this will be good or bad in the long run.

Let’s take a look…

What Is Kindle Unlimited?

This is a new subscription service where users who sign up will be able to download as many kindle books as they want to provided the book is enrolled in the KDP select program.

Therefore as an author if your kindle book is in KDP select then it will automatically be available as part of this subscription service.

At the moment it is only affecting the US market and so your kindle book would need to be enrolled with US rights. Whether it will be rolled out across other countries remains to be seen.

So what’s in it for the publisher?

Well as a publisher you will earn a share of the KDP select global fund – similar to that already implemented for kindle books borrowed by Amazon prime customers.

However, there is a clause:

You only receive your share of the fund if your kindle book has been read by at least 10%. I think this is good news since it means those authors who are writing quality books will be rewarded.

Extra money has been added to the global fund to support this new venture and for July the total fund stands at $2 million.

Is This Good For Kindle Authors?

I certainly think so if you are using Kindle publishing the correct way.

You might be concerned that you will earn less per book than if someone purchased it in the first place. This could well be the case depending on the price of your kindle book.

However, there will be many people who download your book who otherwise would not.

Let’s consider the reasons why someone might want to subscribe to kindle unlimited. There could be 3 reasons and for each one I shall discuss the potential implications for non fiction (information) kindle books:

1. Avid Reader

You love reading and get through books really quickly and so using this service will be cheaper for you in the long run.

This type of person will most likely prefer fiction books and by signing up to the program they could well expand their reading to include more non fiction books.

Therefore this increases your potential readership.

2. Researcher/Development

You want to use this for research purposes. Perhaps you are an educator or student. Using this service would enable you to keep up to date and learn all there is to know about your subject. Obviously this will affect mostly non fictional books.

Again, this could increase your readership as this type of reader will have access to plenty of additional books that before they may not have specifically looked for.

3. Shiny Object Seeker

You just can’t resist what sounds like a ‘freebie’. These people will want to subscribe to this service because they just can’t resist being able to consume lots of ‘free’ books. In fact, often they won’t consume them and perhaps not even 10% and so these types of readers may not really be of benefit.

So we have 2 out of the 3 types of people who could well have visibility of your kindle book, download it and consume it who may not have otherwise.

How To Get The Most Out Of Kindle Unlimited

As an author and publisher of information, the best way to benefit from kindle unlimited is to make sure that you know the purpose of your kindle books  – to engage with prospects and encourage them to sign up to your email list to receive more value.

If you know what each subscriber is worth to you then making money from your kindle books can be viewed as a bonus. Those people who sign up are worth far more to your business than the cost of the kindle book.

Kindle books written for this purpose must of course remain valuable to the reader whether they sign up or not, however they need not be long books. This is an important point to make when discussing the kindle unlimited program. Someone needs to read at least 10% of your book in order for you to get a share of the global fund.

When you write a kindle book for lead generation, one of your objectives is to make sure that they read all the way through your book – if your book is too long they may get distracted before finishing (especially with non physical books). So writing kindle books in this way should work really well with the unlimited subscription service.

10% of a shorter book is easier to achieve than 10% of a longer book – it’s less pages at the end of the day!

The other thing you should do with your kindle books is to create a series. People are more likely to purchase the next book in your series if they enjoyed the first one.

Whether someone purchases it or obtains it as part of their unlimited account it will still mean more revenue for you and an improvement in your overall kindle book ranking – which leads to more visibility and potential readers and sign ups.

So what are your initial feelings about Kindle unlimited?

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