By David Kudler
What’s the most efficient, buyer-friendly way to get your ebook into your reader’s hands?
The ideal way to sell an ebook is from your own ecommerce site. The two reasons for this should, I hope, be fairly self-evident:
- You get to keep 100% of the revenue
- You get to keep the buyer’s info (though they need to agree to let you use it)
That being said, there are likewise two — well, three — very good reasons that most purchases don’t occur on authors’ sites:
- Ecommerce solutions are a pain to set up and maintain (and I say that as a fairly tech-savvy person) 
- Buyers are wary of giving someone they don’t know their personal data, credit card number, email address, etc. 
- Buyers don’t always know how to load an ebook they’ve purchased from your site
The fact of the matter is, then, that the vast majority of purchases occur not on our beautiful landing pages, but on established retailers’ sites. The buyer is already used to purchasing and downloading from their favorite ebook store; the store may even be built into their computer or tablet or phone’s operating system (as it is with the Apple iBooks Store, Amazon’s Kindle Store, Rakuten’s Kobo, Barnes and Noble’s Nook, and Android’s Google Play).
If you want to make it as easy as possible to buy your book, then, you want to link to your buyer’s favorite store.
But which store is that? Amazon US? Kobo France? Nook?  Google South Africa? Livraria Cultura in Brazil?
The temptation is to add every possible link to your landing page, the way I did back in the dark ages:
Eesh. I hand-coded every one of those links, found the icons… What a pain. And it doesn’t even look that great.
There must be a better way.
Enter the Universal Link — a single web page/URL that you can share that will send your excited prospective reader to the store of their choice.
So here’s how that same landing page looks today:
Not only does that page allow you to choose your favorite store, it also links to your local version of that store — and even adds the appropriate affiliate code in! 
I can hear you ask, But how do I GET one of these shiny buttons?
They’re provided by two different kinds of services:
- Dedicated universal link/landing page providers
- Web-library-style sites that aggregate lots of info about books — including where to buy them
The following lists include services that I’ve used — all of which are free.  If you know of a provider that I haven’t listed, please comment below!
Universal Link/Landing Page Sites
Universal Book Links
Sites linked to: Amazon, Apple iBooks, Kobo, B&N Nook, Google Play, ScribD, 24Symbols, Thalia, Inktera, Smashwords, Baja LIbros, Playster, Blio, Bookmate, Browns Books for Students, Casa del Libro, Family Christian, Hive, Buch.de, BOL.de, DriveThruFiction, Indigo, Angus & Robertson, Bücher.de, FNAC, Hugendubel, Libris, Livraria Cultura, Mondadori, Rakuten, WHSmith, BOL.com, Eason, eBook.de, Gandhi.mx, LaFeltrinelli, Overdrive
Affiliate codes? Yes
Pros: This service is run by the lovely people at the ebook distributor Draft2Digital. As you can probably see, it includes the most comprehensive set of links of any service I’ve found. There are stores that have actually moved copies of my books that aren’t on there — but not many.
The service allows you to create a custom URL — so the one for my book shown above is the easy-to-remember (and share) books2read.com/inside-the-box.
When you add the title (usually with the Amazon link), the site will automatically find other retailer links. You can add URLs that it doesn’t find by hand.
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