March Event Notes: Google eBooks – What You Need to Know

Ahh, Spring… Another season for publishers and booksellers to show off their new title offerings and renew relationships with readers with each new read. Wouldn’t it be great if all independent booksellers and publishers could give their readers the option to buy printed books, as well as e-books, directly from them? And what if that one listing could be accessed by readers on almost any device they needed: e-reader, computer, smart phone, or electronic tablet? On March 30th, panel guests Mark Nelson (Google), Margie Scott (Books Inc.), Pete Mulvihill (Green Apple Books), and Moderator, Hut Landon (Northern California Independent Book Association) gave NCBPMA members and guests the inside track on how Google eBooks does just that and why it can work for your business.

Well, just consider the following scenario: It’s Friday afternoon and Cindy Reader has had a long hard work week and all she wants to do this weekend is to relax at home with a good new book. The only problem is that Cindy really doesn’t have the time nor the energy to go out to her absolute favorite independent bookstore and browse around as she normally does.  She imagines, “This would be the perfect time to have one of those e-readers or even one of those fancy new tablet readers.  I could just download a book and I would be set! But I’m just not ready to invest that kind of money just to try it out.”

Cindy did not want to travel to the bookstore after work-and especially not on Saturday morning. But in order for her to enjoy her ideal weekend, that was the sacrifice she was going to have to make.  Cindy hoped that her bookstore had at least one of a few new titles from her list of “next reads”.  To save herself a wasted trip she called the bookstore and inquired about her book interests. Since she knew the clerk, she also felt free to chat about her growing interest in e-books.

Thank goodness she did. Not only did she learn from the clerk that a few of her “next reads” were in stock, but also that she could buy a printed book and an e-book version from the bookstore’s new website! Cindy was thrilled and amazed, but still lost as to how that would help her this weekend.

The clerk quickly explained, “Since we’ve adopted the Indie Commerce program, unlike other e-book sellers, our Google e-books can be downloaded as an e-pub file or PDF for an e-reader or accessed via a web browser for use on a computer or other device. Whatever format you need to read, we provide it. We’re in the business of selling content, not format. And besides, the page quality is great; with page numbers and everything.”

“Really?” Cindy exclaimed in question-like fashion.

“And if you do decide to get an e-reader or tablet, you’ll have the same access to your e-book purchases and can pick up reading where you left off in either platform as long as you remember your username and password. If you want to continue to support us, just make sure you go through our website or access us through our link on the Google eBookstore. We really value you as a customer.”

“Wow! You’ve saved not only my weekend, but my time and energy.  Thank you.  I can’t wait to buy my new e-books from your site or tell my friends. This is the greatest bookstore ever!” ◙

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

If as a publisher, author, or independent bookseller you’ve felt left out of the race for e-book sales then the American Booksellers Association (ABA) and Google may have a solution for you: Google eBooks.

10 Reasons to Sell Your Books through Google E-books

  1. There are no up front set-up costs with Google
  2. Independent booksellers and publishers can draw new customers and gain some lost ones who want to read digitized content
  3. Your book can be read on almost all electronic platforms (computer, tablet, smart phone, and most e-readers)
  4. Readers won’t lose access to their account if they should lose or change their reading device
  5. Google will convert any book format to an e-pub file for posting to the Google eBook site (even a print edition) free of charge as a partner benefit
  6. The publisher manages the percentage of pages previewed for each book
  7. Booksellers receive a customizable website through ABA’s Indie Commerce program
  8. Google honors the agency pricing model so the book sells at the price designated by the publisher
  9. Booksellers enjoy low maintenance retail sales (no inventory, no shipping, no receiving, and no returns)
  10. Publishers enjoy the option to reach customers nationally or globally

For more information on the Google eBook program for publishers, go to Booksellers can visit and


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