Welcome to The CITE -- a blog on Course materials, Innovation, and Technology in Education, created by Mark Nelson and now part of the Publications Department of the National Association of College Stores. CITE is a pun with multiple meanings - referring to cite as in citation, something people reference; site as in location, website, or place people go to; and sight as in foresight or looking ahead to what is coming. Comments, discussion, feedback and ideas are welcome.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Another Way for Publishers to Reach Consumers

A tech management and consulting firm has launched a web service that appears to make it easier for publishers to sell e-books directly to its customers.

The service, called skBookshop.com, helps publishers tap into the 900 million users on Facebook, plus provides a low-cost way to create mobile apps for Android devices immediately, with an app for Apple iOS gadgets coming later this year.

There are fees to use, but publishers are given a password-protected login to a site that allows them to create full-color catalogs with pages for author and book information that links back to the publisher’s web site. The service also provides detailed analytics and tracking information, can collect e-mail addresses, and allows publishers to easily create e-book promotions.

Justin Loeber of CarverTech, the firm that created the service, claims publishers can’t sell directly to customers from the site because rapid development in Facebook and mobile platforms make it difficult to keep up with the coding. At least not yet, and booksellers have to be wondering about the message being sent to visitors who can click on a “buy button” that takes them back to the publisher’s web site to make the purchase.

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