Good Morning Authors!
Early this morning, Kobo launched eBooks with Walmart, the world’s largest retailer. Kobo’s CEO, Michael Tamblyn, has more details to share below:
Walmart’s New Digital Book Offering is Worth Exploring
As an avid book lover, I couldn’t be more excited about the new digital book options now available through Walmart eBooks by Rakuten Kobo. As we begin this new partnership, I wanted to share a little about who we are.
Rakuten Kobo was created in 2009 to empower booklovers to read more by delivering the best digital reading experience possible. We began internationally where we built everything – infrastructure, apps, payment processing, e-commerce stack – knowing we would be operating in multiple countries, in multiple currencies and in multiple languages. This enabled us to quickly expand all over the world. Today, we deliver content in 190 countries and have localized online stores in 24 of those countries.
Although we are a company that focuses on selling a digital product, retailers and store experiences have always been an important part of the mix in every country we operate in. That’s why we’re excited to partner with Walmart as we grow in the U.S. market. Together, we can provide even more people with a great reading experience, whether that’s print, digital or both.
I say both because we know that digital vs. print isn’t “either or.” Today, about one in four books sold in the U.S. is an eBook and in some categories like romance, mystery or fantasy, it’s more like one in two or three. Our best eBook customers tell us they also buy a dozen or more print books a year, as well as digital audiobooks.
We are a company devoted to reading, and we’re looking forward to getting to know Walmart customers who already turn to Walmart for great books at great prices. With our catalog of more than six million books, we know you’ll always find something great to read.
For more details about the Walmart experience, please see the blog below by Mario Pacini, General Manager, Entertainment, Walmart eCommerce U.S.:
So awesome! Congratulations.
Thank you Ev! We’re really excited to shake up the US eBook market!
Do we authors need to do anything to show up in the Walmart ebook store? Or will they automatically be available from kobo? I googled my book in Walmart online and it wasn’t there.
Thank you for asking. Due to the size of Rakuten Kobo’s US catalogue, the upload of our books into Walmart’s ecosystem will take some time. We’re closely monitoring the situation and the full catalogue, including your books, should be available on Walmart by the end of the week.
Sorry, I searched on my author name of Michele Sabad for Camp Follower One Army Brat’s Story, and I still don’t see it. If I can’t find my own book, well… Can you check into it? Or should I wait another week or so? Thanks!
Thanks for checking. I’ve passed your question on to the publisher ops team. Someone will get back to you next week. Thanks again for your patience.
Congrats on this new venture! More reason to go wide with our books 🙂
Thank you Jacquie!
A friend asked if you had to be published direct through Kobo or is it okay if they are through a site like Draft2Digital in order to get on Walmart’s site?
Hi Samantha! Thanks for asking. The entire catalogue will be uploaded, including D2D titles.
I found my e-book on Walmart, but the cover is displayed with noticeable distortions via Chrome browser. 🙁
See the link, please.
Can this be corrected?
I’ve forwarded your question on to the publisher operations team. You should be hearing from them shortly.
Will Walmart sales show up separately from ones on Kobo sales?
Next suggestion: We need a little author page on the walmart.com site that’s linked to our titles. And since I’m making wishes, a way to organize the books by series. 🙂 I love this new venture! So glad to be with Kobo!
Thanks Maggie! I have passed your suggestions on and we will definitely take these ideas into account! Thanks for publishing with Kobo!
I’m noticing none of my Free First in Series books are listed. If Walmart isn’t going to carry freebies, I’ll have to price them up to 99¢. Please let me know.
Hi Maggie! Thank you for this question. Walmart’s Every Day Low Price (EDLP) policy means they are unable to make free books (ebooks and audio) available for download. If your book is permanently free, Walmart will not catalogue it on their website. If your book’s price changes to free for a period of time, the book will be removed from sale on Walmart.com for the length of the free price period. Walmart does not currently have plans to change their free content policy.
Free books will continue to be available on Rakuten Kobo’s US store. Please email us at email@example.com if you have any questions!
Hi there! I’m an author who has just joined Kobo and I’m looking forward to this adventure! I have one question, if you can help me, please: how do I publish my books on Walmart?
Melinda De Ross
Welcome to Kobo! All books should be uploaded automatically to Walmart’s store, so no extra work required on your end! Please let us know if you have any more questions!
I see my ebooks at Walmart, although two cover images are missing, and one is distorted. Also the books in a series are not numbered. Should we include the numbers in the book blurb?
Thanks for getting in touch! I’ve forwarded your question to the publisher operations team; you should be hearing from them soon.
This may seem like a silly question, but is the author payment still the same?
No such thing 🙂
Yes, Walmart operates like any partner store; you will receive payment and sales reports as you always do.
Hi. All but two of my books have shown up on Wal-Mart. Will they eventually be uploaded as well? One was on D2D when my other books were uploaded to Wal-Mart, so not sure why it was left behind, and I released a new book last month. Will you periodically check for new releases? Thanks! Heidi
Hi Heidi! If you haven’t already, can you please email firstname.lastname@example.org? We can assist you there. Thank you!
Very good post! Thank you for sharing!