KDP Expanded Distribution

What is Amazon KDP Expanded Distribution?

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When you self-publish on Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP), you have 2 options:

  1. exclusively sell your paperback on Amazon.com OR
  2. sell it on Amazon.com PLUS opt-in to KDP Expanded Distribution

KDP Expanded Distribution makes your book available for distribution through bookstores, retailers (online and in-store), libraries, and more. In turn, this can help you expand your book readership and make more sales.

Not sure whether KDP Expanded Distribution is the right path for you? Keep reading to find out more!

In this article we’ll cover:

  • how Amazon’s Expanded Distribution works
  • details about the royalty rate
  • eligibility requirements (spoiler alert, most low-content books DO NOT qualify)
  • steps to enroll

How Does KDP Expanded Distribution Work?

Enrolling your book in KDP Expanded Distribution makes it available to large distributors to find and purchase copies. While these large distributors are only in the United States and the United Kingdom, any bookstore or library around the world can then buy your book from these distributors.

NOTE: When you enroll your book in Expanded Distribution, it does not guarantee your book will be picked up by a large distributor or a bookstore. This option only makes your book available for them to order, should they choose to.

So to recap, the decision to pick up your book is up to the large distributors. Also, the decision to order or purchase your book lies in the hands of the individual bookstores and libraries. Keep in mind, Amazon cannot share any details as to which stores end up ordering your book.

What is the Royalty Rate for KDP Expanded Distribution?

When you opt-in to Expanded Distribution for your paperback, the royalty rate is 40% (compared to the standard 60% for regular Amazon distribution). This means you will earn 40% of your book’s list price minus printing costs, applicable taxes, and any necessary withholdings.

KDP Expanded Distribution calculation. royalty rate times list price minus printing costs equals royalty.

The image above shows how to calculate the royalty you will receive when you make a sale.

Another easy way to estimate the royalty for a book enrolled in Expanded Distribution is through your Amazon KDP account. Once you log into your account and go to your Bookshelf, follow the step below.

  1. Find the paperback on your Bookshelf.
  2. Go to the PAPERBACK ACTIONS menu, select Edit paperback rights & pricing. (If your book is already published, choose Edit print book pricing.)
  3. Enter your list price in your territory.

After completing these 3 steps, the pricing grid will automatically update the printing cost and you can see the estimated royalty for the other territories.

NOTE: In the Reports tab on the KDP Dashboard, royalties will be updated about 30 days after the end of the month in which the sale occurred. Then, KDP Expanded Distribution royalties are paid out approximately 60 days after the end of the month in which the distributors report their sales.

What Types of Book are Eligible for KDP Expanded Distribution?

What are the Requirements to Qualify for KDP Expanded Distribution?

All self-published authors on Amazon KDP are eligible to have their books sold through KDP Expanded Distribution.

Keep in mind to enroll your paperback in this program, you can reside anywhere in the world. However, your book must be available for purchase on Amazon.com, or Amazon.co.uk. Additionally, your book must meet the other requirements that are outlined in the chart below.   

KDP eligibility requirements to enroll in Expanded Distribution.
These are the requirements according to Amazon KDP Expanded Distribution.

If you try to enroll your book in KDP Expanded Distribution, but it is not eligible for enrollment, then it will be removed from the program. However, there will be no impact on your KDP account status or the availability of your book(s) on Amazon. They are two separate programs.

Which KDP Book Sizes are Eligible for KDP Expanded Distribution?

Depending on the KDP Book Size, or trim size, that you selected for your book, you may or may not be eligible for Expanded Distribution. To find out which combinations of trim size, ink, and paper type are eligible, refer to the chart below.  

KDP Expanded Distribution chart showing which combinations of book trim sizes, type of ink and paper will be eligible to enroll.
This chart includes the most popular trim sizes available. For a complete list, refer to the Amazon KDP Expanded Distribution page.

How Do You Enroll Your Paperback in KDP Expanded Distribution?

It is free to enroll your book in KDP Expanded Distribution. To begin the enrollment process, follow these steps:

  1. Go to your KDP Bookshelf.
  2. Find the paperback listing you want to enroll.
  3. Under the Paperback Actions menu, click the ellipsis button (“…”).
  4. Choose Edit paperback rights & pricing. For published paperbacks, choose Edit print book pricing.
  5. In the “Royalty and Pricing” section, check the Expanded Distribution box for each available marketplace.
Screenshot from Amazon KDP pricing Royalty and pricing page. A red box around the Expanded Distribution column showing where to check the boxes.
  • When you finish setting your price, click Publish Your Paperback Book.

If you check the Expanded Distribution box but do not click on PUBLISH, the title has not yet been enrolled in the program.

Once the PUBLISH button has been selected and the status update changes to LIVE, the Expanded Distribution enrollment process has begun.

How Long Does It Take For Your Book to Become Available to Bookstores, Libraries, and other Retailers?

After your paperback is accepted to Expanded Distribution, it can take up to eight weeks for the book to become available for booksellers and libraries to order. Again, just because you enroll your paperback into the program, it does not guarantee that it will be accepted by large distributors or purchased by individual bookstores or retailers.

NOTE: If you change your book details, content, or pricing, it can take up to eight weeks for the information to update through KDP Expanded Distribution. Your book will still be available, but it will have the previous information until the update goes through.

Final Thoughts

KDP Expanded Distribution is just one gateway to enhance your book’s visibility, reader accessibility, and increase your sales. For self-published authors that already use the KDP platform it is a convenient and simple process to enroll in the program. Not to mention that it is free.

There are other platforms worth considering that can also help to maximize your book’s exposure. IngramSpark and Barnes & Noble Press are two of these platforms. Some self-published authors even find using a combination of platforms, Amazon KDP with IngramSpark for example to be the best fit for them. Ultimately the decision varies from author to author and depends on your time to research these other avenues, and the goals you established for your book. 

Interested in Learning More About Self-Publishing on Amazon KDP?

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