Amazon has launched a very simple self-publishing tool for the world’s blogger community, to expand the amount of blogs available on Kindle.
Kindle Publishing for Blogs allows bloggers to sign up and submit their feed/s. Amazon will turn your blog feed into a Kindle-ready format. Why wouldn't you?
There is the lure of subscription revenue and added reach acting as bait. Kindle blog subscribers will pay a small fee to access blogs via the device, typically $1.99 a month per subscription. Amazon sets the price for each blog.
One sticking point is the commission Amazon takes… a massive 70%, with bloggers only earning 30% (the opposite to what Apple charges for developers to sell apps in the iTunes Store). That feels very hefty indeed.
Nevertheless, it’s free to join and as with all things Amazon the process is very straightforward and intuitive. Simply visit the Kindle Publishing for Blogs page and create an account (which is different to any existing Amazon account that you may have).
Once you’ve done this, it’s a simple 10-step process.
Step one: you need to add some personal and payment details (for when those thousands of Kindle users subscribe to your blogs!).
Step two: feed submission. Add your URL or feed. Validation happens in a matter of seconds, all being well.
Step three: label your blog. Add a blog title, tagline and description. Be descriptive and use keywords.
Step four: add the publisher or author’s name.
Step five: customise the look and feel. Add some visual elements (they will be displayed on the Amazon.com page). Add a blog screenshot (I use this excellent online screenshot generator). Add a masthead / banner, or logo, to identify your blog on the Kindle.
Step six: set your blog’s language.
Step seven: choose up to three categories and add a bunch of search keywords (you have up to 128 characters, so don’t skimp!).
Step eight: determine the frequency of posts (in our case it’s ‘multiple times per day’).
Step nine: preview and publish your blog.
Step ten: await approval! If all works out you can expect to see your blog featured in the Kindle Store within 72 hours, although it appears to be much quicker than that. One blog I added less than an hour ago has already been approved and published. Go Amazon!
Whether the Kindle has enough scale, and whether enough people subscribe to blogs to make it worthwhile remains to be seen. But there are an estimated 500,000 Kindle users out there and many industry folk think there's a lot more growth to come, so it's surely worth a try. If you sign up then do let us know how you get on.