Amazon’s Kindle MatchBook Program Allows Readers to Buy Discounted eBooks When They Purchase the Print Edition

Submerged Kindle and paperback

Amazon has just announced a brand new program for readers—Kindle MatchBook—which will launch in October 2013. The concept is simple: readers will be able to download select ebooks at a discount when they purchase the print edition of the same title. And the cool thing is Amazon is going to count past print sales, so this offer is retroactive—all the way back to 1995 when Amazon first opened its online bookstore. So if you purchased a print edition of a title and there’s an ebook edition available, you could get the ebook for a discount if it has been enrolled in MatchBook. This means consumers will get a better deal overall and writers have a chance to earn more income.

There are some great advantages to owning both the print and digital editions of a work. First, if you don’t own a Kindle ereader, you can easily read the paperback. You can read the print edition on a plane when all electronic devices have to be turned off. You can then continue on your ereader if you want to. For those of you who like to collect books, especially signed editions, you can keep your print collection in pristine condition as you read the ebook edition.

Indie authors can easily enroll any ebook with a matching print edition on Amazon by going to their Bookshelf, selecting the book, clicking on the Rights & Pricing tab, scrolling to #9 – Kindle MatchBook and selecting the option and the discount price. Enrolling in MatchBook is non-exclusive and you do not have to have that title enrolled in KDP Select to offer the program to your readers. You can opt out any time.

Indie authors or publishers using the Kindle Direct Publishing platform can set their discounts from the dropdown list that appears once you’ve selected MatchBook. Discounts offered are predetermined by Amazon, based on your current retail price. You may be offered a discount price of $2.99, $1.99, $0.99 or free. Authors and publishers can then select their preferred discount.

Readers will have over 10,000 qualifying titles to choose from when Kindle MatchBook launches in October. Many publishing companies are expected to sign up. Imajin Books, a small, independent Canadian publishing company has already signed up for the program and most of their titles will be offered via MatchBook.

So how about you? Are you an author considering enrolling your ebooks in the program? Are you a reader excited about this new program? Would you use it? Do you see any real value in owning both the ebook and print editions of a book? I’d love to hear from you.

About Cheryl Kaye Tardif

Cheryl Kaye Tardif is an award-winning, international bestselling suspense author from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Her titles include Submerged, Children of the Fog, The River, Divine Intervention, Divine Justice, Divine Duo, Whale Song, Lancelot's Lady (under the pseudonym Cherish D'Angelo), Skeletons in the Closet & Other Creepy Stories, Remote Control (novelette), and How I Made Over $42,000 in 1 Month Selling My Kindle eBooks. Her work has also appeared in various anthologies. She is currently working on her next thriller.


  1. Donna Carrick says:

    Hi, Cheryl,
    The best advantage I can think of is that I can buy the print book for hubby, and while he reads it, I can read the e-book. Likewise, I can ‘gift’ the print book to any friend. With the holidays coming up, that’s a great thing to look forward to! At only 2.99 or less for the e-book as an add-on, you can’t go wrong.
    Best regards,

  2. Laura Howard says:

    I decided to try Matchbook. I figure I always go for an upsell at stores like Bath & Body Works, so it might be fun!!

  3. Hi Cheryl, I wasn’t convinced until I read this. Thanks for making it clear. I enrolled my LONE STAR DEATH mystery novel, so that dropped the regular e-book price from $2.99 down to .99. We’ll see if that’s a good incentive for people who want the paperback AND an inexpensive e-book. Happy trails, bobbi c.

  4. I think it’s a great opportunity for both author’s and reader’s. As a new author, I saw the option only last night when I was updating my foreign sales prices. I hesitated in selecting it. Partly because it was late (imagine that- an Indie Author staying up late to work after having already worked all day), and partly because it looked like something that was brand new (I hadn’t noticed the option earlier that day). I figured I’d get a bit of rest and then try to find more info about it in the morning. So – lo and behold – I find your article here without even looking! Thanks for posting about this. I’m going right now to sign up my new novel, A Chain of Flames, for Amazon’s Kindle MatchBook Program.

  5. Laura, I think that was a wise decision. I mean, what have you really got to lose? Absolutely nothing! If a reader gets the discount on your ebook, it means they already bought the paperback. 🙂

    Bobbi, you’re very welcome. You don’t really have anything to lose by trying this. 🙂

    Tony, I’m happy to provide you with helpful info. One thing I’ve learned over the years is that in this biz you don’t get ahead of the game/crowd unless you’re willing to take some risks and experiment. And there’s no risk here. Amazon doesn’t lock you in and you don’t have to have an exclusive deal with them to be able to use this program.

    Success never comes without being a risktaker–so be bold and jump in. I suspect we’ll see only benefits. 🙂

  6. Thank you, Cheryl. I joined matchbook yesterday. I am very glad that they are doing it now as opposed to two years ago because readers will get the updated versions of my books.

    Hoping for the best for all of us.

    • Glad to see you jumped on board. You can never get ahead without taking a step forward! 🙂 I’ll be watching all our books at Imajin Books to see if MatchBook has a positive effect over the next 6 months or so.

  7. With larger books, that I get the Kindle version of, I find, I must have the hardback copy, such as Game of Thrones, where I needed to see the maps and/or cast of characters, I usually get the library edition if I can’t afford my own copy. But gradually, as I can afford it I get all of the series in hardback, large print, if possible. I, also, try to get the audio version the same way. My eyes can no longer read paperback editions of things. Besides, the hardback is so much nicer to look at on the shelf. 🙂 As long as I can use text-to-speech or get the Audible version to go along, I’m a happy camper. So I think this combined way of buying would be helpful. As long as that is not the only way to buy a book. What would be nice is a discount for other versions of a book once you have picked up one version or another from Amazon.

    • Thank you for sharing, Dar. These are great points, and something I’ll keep in mind as well. You’re right–it would be great if there were discounts for any combinations. Who knows? Maybe that’ll be next.

      PS: I recently signed a 2-book deal with Audible for CHILDREN OF THE FOG and SUBMERGED. These will be my first two audiobooks. I am thrilled! Especially for readers like you who struggle with print! My audiobooks should be out before Christmas–I hope you’ll check them out. 🙂

  8. At recent book events, I’ve met several of my readers who said they had both the print and digital versions of my new release. This idea makes sense. Plus it’s a way to reward our loyal readers. After all, we couldn’t write for a living without their support.

    • I’ve had the same thing happen, Pat. I’ll admit, at first I didn’t really “get” it. Why would someone want another edition of the same book? But reading through all the replies above, I think I see why now? People have their own reasons. And that’s good enough for me! 🙂

  9. Signed up for match, if i love a book I want it in ALL formats. Plus, I love a good sale! I like the gift giving idea as well! ‘Tis the season!

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