Zola builds custom sites for authors. Joan Didion, for instance.

Plenty of authors with successful track records and a devoted audience have a website that is hopelessly out of date (or perhaps even non-existent).

We can fix that for you. We’ll make you a custom, modern website, built to work on mobile devices and SEO-optimized. Designed to showcase your work, your new site includes a buy button for your books so that readers can purchase the books they love directly from you.

Joan Didion’s agents at Janklow & Nesbit were happy:

Screen Shot 2016-07-19 at 4.31.45 PM

And of course it is a responsive site that looks good on any browser, any phone.

Screen Shot 2016-07-19 at 4.33.12 PM

Cool, right?

Contact us to find out more.

Read More

Eric Reis delivered nearly 10,000 copies of The Leader’s Guide (his record-breaking Kickstarter book) using The Everywhere Store

Eric Reis wrote The Lean Startup in 2011. It has become a touchpoint for startups around the world – so popular, in fact, that fans wanted another book from Reis, one which would help leaders to apply Lean Startup principles at their companies. So Reis set up a Kickstarter campaign, and it was the most successful Kickstarter for a book ever, raising well over $500,000 from nearly 10,000 backers.

When all those backers needed their ebooks delivered, Reis turned to Zola to fulfill. And fulfill we did! Thousands of backers have downloaded The Leader’s Guide ebook, which can be read on any device.

Screen Shot 2016-07-28 at 2.17.59 PM

Zola can sell or fulfill titles that are protected by DRM (Digital Rights Management), or SDRM (Social DRM). Reis chose SDRM so that his fans could read The Leader’s Guide on any device.

SDRM also allows readers to share ebooks with their friends. Zola’s SDRM features a picture of the author, reminding readers of the fundamental relationship between author and reader, politely dissuading folks from inappropriately sharing their work.

 

IMG_0533

Zola’s SDRM uses proprietary encrypted watermarking technology so that if a copy of an SDRM title shows up on a bittorrent site or is otherwise inappropriately posted, we can identify the bad actor whose copy was shared.

We’d be happy to sell or fulfill your title, too. Contact michael@zolabooks.com

Read More

The Everywhere Store looks great on your site. Because you can customize it, easily.

The Everywhere Store™ allows anybody to sell any book on any website.

But will it look good on your website? Yes. Because you have control over the colors and buttons. You decide what it should look like.

Unlike affiliate links to Amazon or Barnes and Noble or IndieBound, with The Everywhere Store™, the customer never leaves your website. You ARE, from the customer’s point of view, the retailer. So your customer stays your customer. On your site. Closer to you. Right where you want them. And where they want to be!

See how it matches the background on Gregory David Roberts’ site for The Mountain Shadow ebook?

Screen_Shot_2016-06-21_at_2.08.58_PM

The colors match, the buttons match. The language is exactly what Greg specified. All under his control. Easy to change, too, using the dashboard.

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 5.33.33 PM

And your site will look great on phones, of course.

IMG_0122-1

Read More

Zola Books Closes Follow-On Round – Total Investment to Date $8.5 Million

Zola closed a follow-on round of financing last week. The round was led by Charles Dolan, founder of Cablevision and HBO, who also led the initial round of financing that Zola raised in late 2013; the round takes the total investment in Zola to $8.5 million.

“This investment really validates the potential of The Everywhere Store widget. It shows the power of enabling anyone anywhere to sell any book online.” – CEO Joe Regal

The additional financing comes after our launch of its “Everywhere Store” widget on a website featuring The Mountain Shadow by Gregory David Roberts, the sequel to his international bestseller Shantaram, which has sold more than 4 million copies. Visitors to http://www.themountainshadowebook.com can buy The Mountain Shadow in both print and electronic editions directly from that website using The Everywhere Store widget. Though the ebook is available through other retailers, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple, Google, and Kobo, The Everywhere Store alone accounted for 8% of overall sales.

Unlike other start-ups in the book space, Zola has been able to acquire the complete catalog of all major publishers, including the “Big 5” – Penguin Random House, HarperCollins, Hachette, Simon & Schuster, and Macmillan. Our catalog allows us to enable the retail of new works by “traditionally published” authors as well as self-published authors, making it possible for any website (including independent bookseller sites, author sites, and media sites) to sell a complete range of trade books. According to Statista.com, the book publishing market in the United States accounts for approximately $29 billion in annual revenue, of which roughly half is generated by trade books.

Zola Books is based in New York City. Its technology products enable book discovery and retail across the web. Its best-in-class recommendation engine, Bookish Recommends, is being used by more than a dozen libraries throughout North America; it launched its mobile ecommerce widget, The Everywhere Store, in October 2015. Zola acquired Bookish Recommends in 2014 from Bookish LLC, a venture founded by three of the then-“Big 6” publishers, including Penguin, Simon & Schuster, and Hachette, for an undisclosed sum.

Read More

The Everywhere Store – Powered By Zola

So, diversity is an important principle for Zola.  But what does that really mean in practice? For starters, we are launching our new platform that empowers anyone anywhere to sell any book in any format: The Everywhere Store – Powered By Zola.

evstore-pbz

The Everywhere Store gives you two kinds of power: the power to sell books, and the power to have a direct relationship with your readers through email.  One is measured in dollars per sale, and the other is measured by the size of your mailing list. Put otherwise, it’s really the power of a retailer – embedded on your own site in an easy-to-install widget.

So The Everywhere Store widget enables you to make any book available from your site for sale in every format.  Because we have relationships with all the major publishers, and because we now carry digital audiobooks and physical books, that means pretty much any book you want to sell, we can help you sell.

We expect that authors will want to use The Everywhere Store widget to sell their own books (at the very least) and get the email addresses of their readers, which makes it a lot easier to keep their readers in the loop about important stuff − like when their next book is out.  (Some writers are already doing so!)  Bloggers can use The Everywhere Store widget to sell any book they talk about, making up to four times as much money from each sale as they would through affiliate links.  And Independent bookstores can finally make digital books (ebooks and audio) available on their sites without any work whatsoever.  Basically, anyone who wants to sell books can use it.

Making more money on each sale of each book is good already, but capturing email addresses is crucial for connecting with your audience – as these smart folks have shown to great effect:

Hugh Howey – Top self-publishing tips from self-published authors

Jane Friedman – 3 Numbers That Matter to Your Platform

We think that connecting with your audience is crucial.  Your readers – whether “you” are an author, blogger, publisher, bookseller, or media site – are your readers, so why hand them over to someone else?

We’ll be posting more about The Everywhere Store, including our business terms, partnerships with Ingram and Findaway, and more.

But for now we’ll keep it simple:  Any book, any format, any website.

The Everywhere Store

Learn more.

Read More

The Necessity of Diversity

pie___sample_pieces_color_med

Don’t undertake a project unless it is manifestly important and nearly impossible.

 – Edwin Land, founder of Polaroid

Technology is a neutral thing: neither good nor bad, it can change the world for the worse or for the better – sometimes both, depending on the hands it’s in.

In a recent article I was reminded of how significant a role Polaroid played in bringing the technology of photography to everyone. I’m old enough to have had a Polaroid camera when I was a kid, and it was the coolest thing: aim, click, and watch a version of the world appear on a smeary piece of plastic. With Polaroid’s technological achievements, making images was no longer the domain of experts in darkrooms toiling with paper and chemicals. By undertaking the nearly impossible, Polaroid made the world better for many people.

(more…)

Read More