Are you an established author looking to utilize the digital space by publishing on Amazon?
If the answer is no, you’re probably writing your first book and still having cold feet on how to sell eBooks on Kindle.
Then you are not alone. This guide goes over the entire process involved in becoming a budding author.
Amazon eBooks are a resourceful avenue to share your wealth of knowledge and experience with your readers. If you can position yourself as an authority on a topic, then half the job is done. You can write books on specific subject matters in bits or wholesomely. By publishing an eBook on Kindle Amazon, you are establishing yourself as a thought leader in a given niche which can lead to even greater things.
Traditionally, authors looking to publish their books will need to hire the services of an agent. This agent acts as an intermediary between the author and the publisher. The publisher will read and review the manuscript and decide whether it was a good fit for the publishing company. This stringent process has stalled many authors from publishing in the past.
In 2019, it has become even easier to publish an eBook. The internet has afforded us so many opportunities to dispense value and create wealth as stand-alone (without the need for a publisher) entrepreneurs and solution providers.
How to successfully publish and sell your eBook on Amazon in 2020
1. Pick a Relevant Niche
Image via Kindle Ranker
Finding a profitable and relevant niche is the most crucial step to take moving forward. Picking a relevant niche involves a lot of background work. Writing about dragons or unicorns is a fanciful and highly-niched subject, but it’s not something you should get into unless you are passionate about it.
How do you pick a relevant Niche?
• Browse some of the best-selling books in your preferred category on Amazon.
• Look for some of the best-selling books in that niche and take cognizance of their titles.
• Try to find a balance between your writing strength and relevance on the Amazon best-selling books.
The goal is to write a book on a topic you like and has a reasonably broad audience. Find a way to generalize your content to appeal to other demographics will help boost your downloads and revenue in the long-run.
Who says you can’t have fun and make money at the same time?
2. Assessing the Profitability in Your Desired Niche
Image via Kindle Ranker
As an author, earning revenue is as important as providing value for your prospective readers. If you are looking to sell eBooks as a viable source of income, you have to be deliberate and purposeful in your actions.
• Research keywords in your desired niche by using tools such as Moz Explorer, Google Keyword Planner, Ahrefs. These tools provide insights for keywords and phrases that generate the most traffic via different search engines. We recommend using Long Tail Pro and Ahrefs for keyword research.
• Create a working title with the keywords extracted from the tools mentioned above and ascertain if the keyword is broad enough on Kindle. Check where books using those keywords rank on the Amazon Best Sellers list.
As a general indication, if the book ranks under #10,000 amongst hundreds of thousands of books available on Kindle, it means people are attracted to that niche, and there is enough demand for it.
3. Craft Your eBook title and Subtitle with Your Readers and SEO in Mind
Image via Self-Publishing School
When writing Amazon books, the title and subtitles are as important as the content itself.
Just like email headlines, your title is what stands between getting lackluster downloads or becoming a top performer. Craft a book title that is catchy, short, and descriptive. If you want to reveal more about the book’s direction and tone, you can expand further in the subtitles.
However, it is essential to steer clear from complicated and sensitive words that correlate with abuse or click-bait.
There is no perfect title or subtitle, so that means you are solely responsible for finding what works. An example is Mark Ronson’s “The Subtle Art of Not Giving A Fxxk.” Despite the inclusion of a swear word, this book has sold hundreds of thousands of copies. Asides asking for other author’s opinions (which is valuable), you can “A/B test” different titles while you put the book on sale or pre-order. Lastly, you can tweak as needed based on the feedback you receive. Remember, you can always relaunch!
4. Write a Powerful Description
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A compelling description is prime real estate to tell your story. Your book’s description is where you make a pitch and hoodwink them to click the download button. A powerful description should give thorough information about the direction, tone, inspiration, and scope of the book. Don’t get carried away when self-publishing your book by writing a bland description. While a book cover, title, and subtitle might get your prospective reader’s initial attention, the description is the narrative that closes the deal.
A bland or convoluted Amazon book description will turn off prospective readers, and that will ultimately affect your bottom line. Take quality time to summarize your book in 100 -200 words that perfectly encapsulates the entire book and what it reveals.
If you write a darn good description for all your books, you have a higher chance of amazon self-publishing success than an author that breezes past this stage. The devil is in the details. Let the world know how your beautiful mind works by telling it all in the Amazon kindle book description section.
5. Hire a Book Editor
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The discerning eyes of a professional editor are critical to having a grammar-error free manuscript. While Grammarly and Hemmingway have grown popular amongst writers, a human editor will check for things a piece of software cannot spot. An editor will check for syntax errors, grammar errors, contextual errors, and formatting errors. An editor’s work goes beyond just errors; he/she will adjust the tone and structure of the content if need be to fit your targeted audience.
Hiring an editor is more important if you are not a native English writer or cannot write as proficiently as a native English writer. Remember, this is a market place, and you do not want to be known as the author with lots of errors in his/her books. You can hire directly on freelance platforms like Fiverr. Search for Kindle book editors and choose a freelancer with a lot of positive reviews.
6. Design an Attractive eBook Cover
Image via Fiverr
We’ve all heard of the saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover,” right?
Well, that doesn’t apply when people have thousands of books to choose from.
The eBook cover, just like any other marketing visual piece, is essential to book sales. The eBook cover should be designed from concept to execution. It goes beyond matching colors and vectors.
Very few readers are going to come to the book section looking out for your book alone. A bulk of your prospective readers are going to come from the search engines and know little or nothing about your books.
Designrr is a great platform to use for book cover designs. You can select from thousands of templates and edit and tweak to fit your book’s theme. If you aren’t good with designs or too busy to learn the app, you can hire the services of a professional graphic designer. You can hire directly on freelance platforms like Fiverr. We recommend Fiverr because it’s a marketplace where you can get things done in $5. Hire a top-notch graphic designer with hundreds of reviews and get an attractive book cover for your amazon book.
7. Give Your Book for Free at the Beginning for a Couple of Days
Image via Amazon
Yes, I can feel the stares and wry looks right now. I understand you spent months creating this masterpiece of yours, but if you are starting out as an indie author with zero to little acclaim, this tip is for you. You have to understand the inner workings of the SEO and market psychology of your prospective readers.
When you publish your eBook on Kindle, you will be asked to set a price. We recommend you start with $0. Unless you have a massive email list, hundreds of fans from your previous books or backed by a big publisher, you’ll have to find a way to break into the market.
The initial price to set for your book should be $0, but just for a few days.
By listing your book for free, eager readers will download sporadically. These massive downloads will boost your presence on the kindle market place in your category. Do not be surprised if you find yourself in the Amazon best sellers list after a few days.
This strategy harnesses the power of Amazon traffic once people discover your book has been listed for free.
The goal here is to get your book to the first page of the search results, then gradually increase your price over time to your desired amount.
8. Network with Other Authors and Join Groups on Facebooks
Image via Facebook
Meet new authors, share tips in your niche, post new blogs, and content across your social media platform. People need to trust you before they buy your products.
There are several websites on the internet dedicated to promoting new books and authors. Send messages to these website owners and email them a preview of your book. They may like it and hyperlink your author link into one of their daily blogs.
You can also join groups on Facebook. There are several author groups across various niches. You can get marketing tips, inspiration ideas, valuable criticism from other authors that will help shape your journey as an established author. However, try to avoid spamming the groups with your author link and book links.
Congrats, you made it to the end. Now you know how to self publish an eBook on Amazon and earn a decent income using the strategies above. This is the first stepping stone towards becoming a self-publishing writing Guru.
Self-publishing means independently publishing your book on an online platform like Amazon without the need for an agent or a traditional publishing company.
It’s never too late to start fleshing out those ideas and monetizing it to generate passive income with self-publishing.