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Self-published books now account for 30% to 40% of ebook sales. Ebooks themselves make up close to 40% of all books sold, and in 2018 they are set to outsell print books in the US. All this bodes well for self-publishing authors, for whom ebooks are the preferred format. They will continue to see a healthy growth in sales as more and more people adopt e-reading. Self-publishers are also benefiting as customers switch over from brick-and-mortar bookstores to online ones like Amazon, which put self-publishers on a level footing with traditional publishers.
If you are still wondering whether to self-publish or take the traditional route, you may read through the pros and cons of each option. In case you decide to self-publish, we have put together a list of publishing service companies that are popular among independent authors. The basic services that these companies provide are manuscript conversion into publishing-ready formats and access to one or more retail platforms. Some companies even offer a range of author solutions such as professional book editing and cover design, enhanced distribution, and marketing and promotional assistance.
But before you go through our list, know about the two main types of publishing service companies: retailers and aggregators.
Retailer:
A publishing company that sells books exclusively through its own retail store is classified as a retailer. Examples include Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) and CreateSpace, Apple’s iBookstore, Barnes & Noble’s Press, and Kobe. Some of these companies, however, have launched special programs and partnerships to distribute books to other retailers, e.g., CreateSpace’s Expanded Distribution program.
Aggregator:
An aggregator not only offers a publishing and retailing platform for ebooks, but also distributes them to a number of partner online retailers and libraries. This helps authors get the widest possible reach, without having to format their book to each publisher’s guidelines and maintain multiple publisher accounts. Aggregators can also get ebooks into channels that authors cannot approach directly; e.g., Scribd, a digital library with a subscription service and more than 80 million users worldwide, does not accept ebooks directly from authors.
For their services, aggregators charge a 10% to 20% commission on sales, over and above the retailer’s own cut.
While the term “aggregator” applies to distributors of ebooks, “distributor” is used for companies that make print books available to brick-and-mortar stores, libraries, and academic institutions, e.g., IngramSpark. Some aggregators, like Lulu and Bookbaby, even distribute and retail print books. Given the degree of overlap and the essential similarity in what they do, both types can be referred to as “distributors.”
The list of companies below follows no particular order. You can choose to publish with one or more of them.
1. Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP):
Owned by Amazon, KDP publishes and retails ebooks that can be read on Kindle devices or on devices that have installed the Kindle app. This is one publisher that an independent author cannot afford to ignore: About 80% of all English-language ebook sales occur via Amazon, and self-published titles alone account for 42% of this figure.
If you are willing to grant Amazon exclusive distribution of your ebook for a 90-day period, you can enroll into KDP Select, a marketing program that helps authors promote books largely through discounts and countdown deals. If KDP Select works well for you (and discounting is an effective way to promote sales—as the success of book promotional services like Bookbub shows), you can re-enroll into the program as many times as you want. Participation in KDP Select also makes your book available to subscribers of Kindle Unlimited and the Kindle Owners Lending Library for Amazon Prime members, and you will receive additional payments depending on the number of pages subscribers read.
Kindle ebooks use the .MOBI format, unlike most other publishers who use .EPUB. If you have created your ebook in Word, you can convert it to .MOBI using free conversion software like Calibre.
KDP pays authors royalties of 35% or 70% on the book’s list price.
2. CreateSpace:
This is Amazon’s publishing platform for print books and uses print-on-demand publishing, where no stocks are held—a book is printed only when a customer places an order.
Books published with CreateSpace retail exclusively on Amazon, unless the author has opted into their Expanded Distribution program. Under this program, authors can make their books available to online and offline retailers such as Barnes & Noble, and to distributors such as Ingram and Baker & Taylor. On being added to the distributors’ catalogs, the appear in the ordering systems of the distrubutors' network of retailers, libraries, and academic institutions, and can be ordered whenever a customer places a request at any of these places.
Amazon gives customers a better browsing and purchase experience by linking a book’s paperback and digital versions during the publishing process, provided the details of both versions match exactly.
Amazon takes a 40% cut from every regular sale, and 60% from sales made through their Expanded Distribution program. Royalty is paid after deducting Amazon’s commission (40% or 60%), a fixed charge, and a per-page charge from the book’s list price. Note that CreateSpace does not at present offer the hardcover format.
3. iBooks:
Apple’s iBooks is the second-biggest ebook retailer after Amazon, accounting for 10% of sales in the top 5 countries. Its more than 40 country-specific ebook stores give unique benefits to authors: They can price their books differently in each country depending on the prices of comparable books, and even set prices in the local currency. Moreover, authors can schedule free book and discount offers anytime, and there is no exclusive distribution contract.
To publish directly on iBooks, you must have a Mac device; else you will have to go through an ebook aggregator.
Apple offers a flat 70% royalty rate.
4. Barnes & Noble Press:
Formerly known as NOOK Press, this is a self-publishing portal from Barnes & Noble. It accounts for 3% of ebook sales, almost all of it from the US. It also offers print-on-demand publishing. Books published with Barnes & Noble Press retail only at their online and physical bookstores.
Royalty rates range from 40% to 65%, depending on the price of the book.
5. Kobo:
An anagram of “book,” Kobo accounts for about 2% of total ebook sales in the top 5 English-language markets combined. It is a significant player in Canada, though, where it accounts for as much as 25% of ebook sales.
Like the Kindle, Kobo offers an e-reading device as well as an app for reading on other devices. Ebooks published with Kobo are available to readers in over 190 countries. It also runs the Kobo eReading Program with the American Booksellers Association, and member bookstores can give their customers access to Kobo’s 5 million+ titles. Kobo also has partnerships with e-book retailers around the world.
Royalty rates are either 45% or 70%, depending on the ebook’s price.
6. IngramSpark:
This is a self-publishing service established by Ingram, the world’s leading distributor of print books connected to 39,000 bookstores, libraries, and online retailers in more than 150 countries. IngramSpark also distributes ebooks to all the top online retailers, including Amazon, iBooks, Kobo, and Barnes & Noble.
They publish hardcover books, and even offer a premium level of printing—this is useful for books containing many pictures. They also offer authors a book returns option; authors who opt in stand a better chance of being stocked by brick-and-mortar booksellers, who are otherwise reluctant to carry self-published titles.
IngramSpark charges a 53% commission for sales to bookstores and 30% to online retailers, after deducting book production costs. They also charge a $49 set-up fee and $12 annual fee.
7. Smashwords:
Smashwords is a popular ebook aggregator and distributes ebooks to almost all the top retailers, including Kobo, iBookstore, and Barnes & Noble. They have extensive ebook formatting guidelines that enable easy conversion into the formats required by their multiple retail partners. On the flip side, Smashwords does not distribute to Amazon, and offers no support with ebook formatting. If you need help formatting your ebook, and/or if you would rather publish with an aggregator that also distributes to Amazon, you may be better off publishing with Draft2Digital.
Smashwords takes a 10% cut on books sold through their own retail channel, and 15% on books sold through other retailers—this is in addition to the retailer’s own fees.
8. Draft2Digital:
Although Draft2Digital has fewer retail partners than Smashwords, it distributes to Amazon and covers all the major ebook retailers. They have another significant advantage—they will format your ebook, and for free. They charge 10% of the retail price at most retailers.
9. Lulu:
Lulu is one of the oldest online self-publishing companies and a popular distributor of digital and print books. They retail books through their own bookstore as well as distribute to other online stores (Amazon, Apple, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, etc.) and book distributors (Barnes & Noble and Ingram). Lulu offers both hardcover and paperback formats for print books. Their ebook conversion, publishing, and distribution services are free, but they sell an array of support services including editing, cover design, and book marketing. For books sold through their marketplace, Lulu charges a 20% commission after deducting any book production costs applicable to print copies. Sales generated through partner retailers would additionally attract their own commission.
10. Bookbaby:
Bookbaby retails books through their own Bookshop and distributes to other retailers as well. Apart from publishing and distribution, they also sell services such as editing, cover and interior design, and marketing. Services can be purchased individually or as a package. All services are paid. Ebooks earn 100% royalties after deducting the retailer’s commission. Sales made through Bookshop, however, earn 85% royalties. Bookbaby also has a print-on-demand service. Printed books generate royalties between 10% and 30%.
There are other ways to publish and sell, too. For example, you can publish and sell directly to your customers from your own Web page by using Gumroad. You can also crowdfund your book using platforms like Unbound and Inkshares: Pitch or directly post your book/book proposal—as required by the platform, set a funding goal, and create a campaign to get support. If the goal is met, the company will edit, design, publish, distribute, and even market your book like a traditional publisher would.
So which self-publishing platform is best?
Here are a few thinking points:
As Amazon dominates 80% of the ebook market, you should publish directly with KDP rather than go through an aggregator. You could choose an aggregator/distributor for the rest, or even ignore them temporarily if you’re a new author learning the ropes. If you go exclusively with Amazon, you can access their powerful marketing features even as you earn a higher royalty rate. Bear in mind, though, that if the other retailers are excluded indefinitely, your book may never reach its sales potential. After all, Kobo accounts for 25% of the Canadian market, and iBooks for 30% of the Australian and 10% of the overall market. It is best to try out all the major retailers at some point in time, or for some of your books.
If you want to sell print copies, and have signed up with KDP for ebooks, go with CreateSpace for Amazon. Alternatively, you can opt for IngramSpark, Lulu, or Bookbaby because they offer print-on-demand copies as well as distribute to all the major ebook retailers. If you choose the latter, remember to exclude Amazon when you select retailers from your distributor’s list. Print copies cannot be sold without an ISBN, and it is better to get one on your own rather than use the one assigned by your publishing service company.
Some companies may not accept books from authors located outside the US. Royalty payment processes and payment frequency may also differ across companies. Look up the FAQs on the company websites or contact support for specific queries.


Companies using blockchain as DNA of their business model routinely raise funds by launching their own tokens. The token launch may structured as, an Initial Exchange Offering, i.e. IEO, or, an Initial Coin Offering, i.e. an ICO, Security Token Offerings, i.e. STOs, Decentralized Autonomous ICO, or DAICO, Simple Agreement for Future Tokens, or, SAFTs, Token Airdrop, or other similar models. For all such models, blockchain startups may require a legal opinion letter to certify the token as a utility token, or a security token. Along with such legal opinion letters, other agreements are also needed during launch or issuance of the tokens.
Tokens require platforms such as Ethereum to exist and operate. The examples of tokens are augur, omisego, and golem. These tokens are built on the Ethereum and there are various other tokens built upon other platforms, and they exist on that. Tokens are utilized in a parent blockchain for example, EOS is a token which is utilized in Ethereum blockchain. Creating a token is a simple process, but for that, it is necessary to follow a standard template on the blockchain such as Ethereum and Neo Platform that allows an individual to create his own token. This functionality of creating an individual’s token is made possible using smart contracts. Tokens are usually created and distributed to the public through initial coin offerings which are a form of crowdfunding.
Technology lawyers prepare legal opinion on utility tokens for blockchain technology companies to be submitted at international cryptocurrency exchanges.
It can be possible that issuing and selling of the token come under legal regulations, but it depends on the features of the token. The best example is a security token that falls under securities law, but a utility token does not come under legal regulation. Security token offers an individual the promise of profits or return on investment which is quite different from utility token. A utility token is a transaction type of token that has some sort of use within the ecosystem that allows access to the purchase of goods and services. A utility token is not regulated and controlled by security law. Therefore, they are free to be traded by almost anyone. Utility token has much higher liquidity.
Utility token will increase in value if demand on a good and services on that platform increases. So, the price of the utility token may reach a point where it becomes outrageously high and people say that is too expensive. People could not pay too much money for that good or services. A security token is regulated and monitored, which means that the liquidity is reduced because an individual is narrowing his audience. There is an emergence of exchanges that allow and facilitate the trading of security tokens.
A cryptocurrency is a type of digital money that means it only exists electronically. The cryptocurrencies were designed to be secure as well as in most cases completely, anonymous. An individual cannot follow the cryptocurrency money trail like he can with dollars and pounds.

Cryptocurrency is an online currency that uses Cryptography. Cryptography is the art of solving codes and creating them. It does not have a central bank for regulating it. It operates independently of a central bank. It exists only in computers, and an individual can transfer it backwards and forwards.
A cryptocurrency exchange also is known as digital currency exchange (DCE). With the help of cryptocurrency exchange, an individual can buy or sell cryptocurrencies. With the help of it, an individual can also trade them using electronic monetary units, fiat currencies, or other digital assets. A cryptocurrency exchange works 24/7, but nobody knows who the buyers and sellers in cryptocurrency exchanges are.
A legal opinion is a formal letter by an attorney that verifies the legal status of an individual or entity. The situations that define a legal opinion involve verifying the validity of the corporation and statement the way the judge should rule on a particular legal matter. A legal opinion is a tool that permits parties to obtain a qualified third-party opinion on the subject and other issues related to the conclusion of a transaction. Legal opinion is a document that is drawn up by a competent lawyer on any specific problem.
The main point of any token offering is listing an issued token on a cryptocurrency exchange so that liquidity is created. Therefore, there is a requirement to draft a legal opinion on the substance of the token that analyses the concept and features of the token. A legal opinion is drafted so that it should confirm the classification of a token as a security. Cryptocurrency exchange needs such type of legal opinion on security or non-security in order not to be subject to the laws that are applied to a classic exchange that trade in securities.
There is an important fact that should be considered when compiling legal opinion for a cryptocurrency exchange. A legal opinion is drawn up by a specialist who knows the particular field of law. But it should not be provided for the law of a foreign state with which the lawmaker is not familiar. Qualitative Legal Opinion for a cryptocurrency exchange plays an important role which should be distinguished by strict wording, circumstances provided with clarity, with validity in current legislation, and the presence of transparent, and understandable conclusion. If the customer’s activity is found illegal in the investigation, the conclusion can never come out to be positive. The self-respecting lawyer will not risk his name and give an opinion on the legality of the activity if the activity after the investigation is found illegal.
Legal services play an important role in small business owners for resolving their legal hurdles. Legal services help the owner’s personal assets by protecting them from any lawsuits against the business. Legal services ensure protection for the business against discrimination, wrongful termination, and handling employee contracts and copyright claims. The best way to obtain legal services for small business owners is through a pre-paid legal services plan. Pre-Paid legal services facilitate companies with affordable access to legal advice and attorney’s services for one low, monthly fee.
Businesses from various sectors such as finance, IT, agriculture, trade, and foreign economic activity trust and take benefit t from legal services that are offered by international firms because their specialists offer the best selection of the services. They are experienced specialists who have experiences of more than 15 years in a particular field. A specialist team of lawyers track the most advanced methods and latest legislative events around the world and can quickly resolve any issues of a customer relating to the field of legal consulting. These specialists have the responsibility to protect commercial, personal, or legal information.

Now there are law firms that focus their practice entirely on the cryptocurrency aspects of fintech, intellectual property, and securities law. Their attorneys give legal advice to Initial Coin Offering, Security Token Offering, Initial Exchange Offering, Exchanges, Investment Deals, Off-Exchange Trading, and related matters to Cryptocurrency. They deal with the laws and legal issues that surround with cryptocurrency and blockchain technologies and draft legal opinions for clients after conducting a thorough internal research audit for the client’s project and examine applicable case law.


Companies using blockchain as DNA of their business model routinely raise funds by launching their own tokens. The token launch may structured as, an Initial Exchange Offering, i.e. IEO, or, an Initial Coin Offering, i.e. an ICO, Security Token Offerings, i.e. STOs, Decentralized Autonomous ICO, or DAICO, Simple Agreement for Future Tokens, or, SAFTs, Token Airdrop, or other similar models. For all such models, blockchain startups may require a legal opinion letter to certify the token as a utility token, or a security token. Along with such legal opinion letters, other agreements are also needed during launch or issuance of the tokens.
Tokens require platforms such as Ethereum to exist and operate. The examples of tokens are augur, omisego, and golem. These tokens are built on the Ethereum and there are various other tokens built upon other platforms, and they exist on that. Tokens are utilized in a parent blockchain for example, EOS is a token which is utilized in Ethereum blockchain. Creating a token is a simple process, but for that, it is necessary to follow a standard template on the blockchain such as Ethereum and Neo Platform that allows an individual to create his own token. This functionality of creating an individual’s token is made possible using smart contracts. Tokens are usually created and distributed to the public through initial coin offerings which are a form of crowdfunding.
Technology lawyers prepare legal opinion on utility tokens for blockchain technology companies to be submitted at international cryptocurrency exchanges.
It can be possible that issuing and selling of the token come under legal regulations, but it depends on the features of the token. The best example is a security token that falls under securities law, but a utility token does not come under legal regulation. Security token offers an individual the promise of profits or return on investment which is quite different from utility token. A utility token is a transaction type of token that has some sort of use within the ecosystem that allows access to the purchase of goods and services. A utility token is not regulated and controlled by security law. Therefore, they are free to be traded by almost anyone. Utility token has much higher liquidity.
Utility token will increase in value if demand on a good and services on that platform increases. So, the price of the utility token may reach a point where it becomes outrageously high and people say that is too expensive. People could not pay too much money for that good or services. A security token is regulated and monitored, which means that the liquidity is reduced because an individual is narrowing his audience. There is an emergence of exchanges that allow and facilitate the trading of security tokens.
A cryptocurrency is a type of digital money that means it only exists electronically. The cryptocurrencies were designed to be secure as well as in most cases completely, anonymous. An individual cannot follow the cryptocurrency money trail like he can with dollars and pounds.

Cryptocurrency is an online currency that uses Cryptography. Cryptography is the art of solving codes and creating them. It does not have a central bank for regulating it. It operates independently of a central bank. It exists only in computers, and an individual can transfer it backwards and forwards.
A cryptocurrency exchange also is known as digital currency exchange (DCE). With the help of cryptocurrency exchange, an individual can buy or sell cryptocurrencies. With the help of it, an individual can also trade them using electronic monetary units, fiat currencies, or other digital assets. A cryptocurrency exchange works 24/7, but nobody knows who the buyers and sellers in cryptocurrency exchanges are.
A legal opinion is a formal letter by an attorney that verifies the legal status of an individual or entity. The situations that define a legal opinion involve verifying the validity of the corporation and statement the way the judge should rule on a particular legal matter. A legal opinion is a tool that permits parties to obtain a qualified third-party opinion on the subject and other issues related to the conclusion of a transaction. Legal opinion is a document that is drawn up by a competent lawyer on any specific problem.
The main point of any token offering is listing an issued token on a cryptocurrency exchange so that liquidity is created. Therefore, there is a requirement to draft a legal opinion on the substance of the token that analyses the concept and features of the token. A legal opinion is drafted so that it should confirm the classification of a token as a security. Cryptocurrency exchange needs such type of legal opinion on security or non-security in order not to be subject to the laws that are applied to a classic exchange that trade in securities.
There is an important fact that should be considered when compiling legal opinion for a cryptocurrency exchange. A legal opinion is drawn up by a specialist who knows the particular field of law. But it should not be provided for the law of a foreign state with which the lawmaker is not familiar. Qualitative Legal Opinion for a cryptocurrency exchange plays an important role which should be distinguished by strict wording, circumstances provided with clarity, with validity in current legislation, and the presence of transparent, and understandable conclusion. If the customer’s activity is found illegal in the investigation, the conclusion can never come out to be positive. The self-respecting lawyer will not risk his name and give an opinion on the legality of the activity if the activity after the investigation is found illegal.
Legal services play an important role in small business owners for resolving their legal hurdles. Legal services help the owner’s personal assets by protecting them from any lawsuits against the business. Legal services ensure protection for the business against discrimination, wrongful termination, and handling employee contracts and copyright claims. The best way to obtain legal services for small business owners is through a pre-paid legal services plan. Pre-Paid legal services facilitate companies with affordable access to legal advice and attorney’s services for one low, monthly fee.
Businesses from various sectors such as finance, IT, agriculture, trade, and foreign economic activity trust and take benefit t from legal services that are offered by international firms because their specialists offer the best selection of the services. They are experienced specialists who have experiences of more than 15 years in a particular field. A specialist team of lawyers track the most advanced methods and latest legislative events around the world and can quickly resolve any issues of a customer relating to the field of legal consulting. These specialists have the responsibility to protect commercial, personal, or legal information.

Now there are law firms that focus their practice entirely on the cryptocurrency aspects of fintech, intellectual property, and securities law. Their attorneys give legal advice to Initial Coin Offering, Security Token Offering, Initial Exchange Offering, Exchanges, Investment Deals, Off-Exchange Trading, and related matters to Cryptocurrency. They deal with the laws and legal issues that surround with cryptocurrency and blockchain technologies and draft legal opinions for clients after conducting a thorough internal research audit for the client’s project and examine applicable case law.


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