Self publishing on Amazon KDP is quickly becoming the most popular way for aspiring authors to get their work into the hands of readers and make money from their art.
And, it's only going to get more profitable in 2023!
Everybody and their mother has some sort of ebook reader or app on their phone to purchase and read books.
Likewise, a new online publishing platform advances every day; it's never been easier for authors to self-publish and reach a large audience they never could have reached without a publishing company just a few years ago...
In this blog post, I'll discuss how to stay ahead of the curve and capitalize on the self-publishing trend in 2023.
Whether you're an experienced author or just getting started, these pointers will help you navigate the world of self-publishing and achieve success.
So, if you're ready to dive in and self-publish your work, keep reading!
- Tip #1: Create a professional and compelling book cover
- Tip #2: Choose the right categories and keywords for your book
- Tip #3: Write a compelling book description and blurb.
- Tip #4: Use Amazon's Look Inside feature to give readers a sneak peek of your book.
- Tip #5: Set the right price for your book.
- Tip #6: Offer your book on other platforms, such as Kobo and Apple Books.
- Tip #7: Use Amazon's marketing tools, such as Kindle Unlimited and Amazon Advertising.
- Tip #8: Collect reviews from readers to help promote your book.
- Tip #9: Consider using a professional editor to improve the quality of your book.
- Tip #10: Continuously monitor and adjust your book's performance to maximize sales.
Tip #1: Create a professional and compelling book cover
The importance of standing out from the crowd and grabbing readers' attention cannot be stated enough! And one of the most effective ways to do this is with your book cover.
Your book cover is more often than not the first thing a potential reader sees, and a well-designed cover can help to establish credibility from the beginning.
It's like the old saying goes: "You can't judge a book by its cover... but everyone does it anyway."
So how do you create a professional and compelling book cover that will make your book stand out on Amazon KDP?
- Nail the design:
The design should be relevant to your book's genre and subject matter.
For example, a romance novel should have a romantic-looking cover, while a thriller should have a more suspenseful design.
2. Reflective of the tone:
In addition to being genre-appropriate, the cover should also accurately reflect the tone and content of your book.
If your book is a light-hearted comedy, for example, the cover shouldn't be too dark or serious. And of course, the title and author name should be clear and easy to read.
3. Hire A Professional:
If you're not confident in your own design skills, it's a good idea to hire a professional cover designer. This may seem like an unnecessary expense, but trust me - it's worth it.
A poorly designed cover can actually hurt your book's chances of success, whereas a well-designed cover can help you stand out from the crowd.
Not to mention the back cover and spine!
These will be visible on online bookstores as well, so they should be as professional and compelling as the front cover.
More often than not, I see a sloppy back cover from an author that assumed nobody would see it online! Not on Amazon, you don't... (get away with laziness)!
I highly recommend this post, 10 Book Cover Design Tips to Help You Sell Your Book, if you need some more direction!
Tip #2: Choose the right categories and keywords for your book
When picking categories, consider the genre and subject matter of your book and select categories that accurately reflect these.
For instance, if your book is a romance novel, you might choose the "Romance" and "Fiction" categories. You can also choose up to two subcategories to further refine your book's placement on Amazon.
In addition to categories, it's also important to choose the right keywords for your book. Keywords are words or phrases that potential readers might use when searching for a book on Amazon.
For example, if your book is a fantasy novel, some relevant keywords might include "fantasy," "magic," and "dragons."
When choosing keywords, aim for a balance between specificity and popularity.
Too many specific keywords may not be searched for often, while too many general keywords can make your book tough to find among the competition. It's a good idea to research which keywords are commonly used for books in your genre.
Once you've picked your categories and keywords, make sure to include them in your book's metadata on Amazon.
This will help Amazon's algorithms properly classify your book and make it more discoverable by potential readers.
Tip #3: Write a compelling book description and blurb.
When it comes to writing your book description and blurb, you want to grab the reader's attention and give them a sense of what your book is about as soon as the scan it.
After the cover, this is the next thing a potential reader will see, so you want to make a good impression.
Your description and blurb have to be compelling. You can do this by including key details about your book's plot and characters, as well as any unique selling points they should be aware of.
Try to avoid using cliches or overused phrases and idioms, and instead focus on making your book sound interesting and original.
Nobody wants to buy a book they feel like they've read already!
It's also a good idea to use active voice and clear, concise language in your description and blurb.
This will make your book's intention clear.
Overall, the goal of your book's description and blurb is to entice readers and make them want to learn more about your book.
With a little effort and creativity, you can craft a description and blurb that will help your book stand out and attract potential readers.
Tip #4: Use Amazon's Look Inside feature to give readers a sneak peek of your book.
The Amazon "Look Inside" feature is probably the most underutilised tool available to authors during the submission process!
This feature allows readers to preview a portion of your book before they decide to purchase it. As an author, you can use this feature to give readers a sneak peek of your book and entice them to take a closer look.
This is especially effective for books that are difficult to summarize or explain in a short blurb or description.
You get to provide a sample of the actual content in your book and give readers a better idea of what to expect from your book, showcasing your writing style.
In addition to attracting potential readers, the Look Inside feature can also help you build credibility and trust. By providing a preview of your book, you demonstrate the quality of your work and give readers confidence that your book is worth purchasing. This can help to build a loyal readership and encourage word-of-mouth recommendations. So, make sure to use the Look Inside feature to its fullest potential!
Tip #5: Set the right price for your book.
Your pricing says a lot about your book and you! But what does that mean? That doesn't mean pricing your book at $100 a pop to show its "worth", it just means choosing the appropriate pricing that reflects your product.
Your price should be determined by a few things such as the length of your book, the quality of your content, and the value it provides to readers.
Additionally, you should consider the prices of similar books in your genre and make sure your price is competitive.
It's also important to consider how your pricing will impact your book's discoverability on various platforms, as some platforms have price thresholds for certain features or promotions.
Ultimately, the right price for your book is one that is fair to you and your readers, and that helps your book stand out in a crowded market.
Tip #6: Offer your book on other platforms, such as Kobo and Apple Books.
Amazon is great!
Yes, but it doesn't mean you should limit yourself to just one platform. It's important to get your book out there on as many platforms as possible to reach a wider audience.
That's why it's a good idea to offer your book on platforms like Kobo and Apple Books. These platforms have their own dedicated readership, so it's worth considering if you want to maximize the reach of your book.
Plus, it is easy enough to do - you can submit your book on a platform like Smashwords, and they will distribute it to multiple platforms for you.
So don't limit yourself to just Amazon, consider branching out to other platforms too. It's a smart move to maximize your book's potential reach and ultimately increase its success.
Tip #7: Use Amazon's marketing tools, such as Kindle Unlimited and Amazon Advertising.
I have an entire guide on making the most of Amazon Advertising for you to check out. If you are publishing a book on KDP, it is insane not to utilise their very own ad platform.
I have spoken with readers who bypassed Amazon Ads and straight to Instagram and Facebook Ads!
Please, do yourself a favor if you've considered this and read my guide.
Tip #8: Collect reviews from readers to help promote your book.
It's definitely not easy, but try to get your readers to review your book, as this will help immensely. While you cannot ask them for a 5-star review in exchange for a free book or another incentive, you can encourage them to leave an honest review if they enjoyed the book.
This can help to build buzz around your book and potentially attract more readers.
Additionally, many online bookstores and platforms use customer reviews as a key factor in determining the visibility of a book, so having a good number of reviews can help to increase your book's visibility and boost sales.
So don't be shy - ask your readers to leave a review and help spread the word about your book!
Tip #9: Consider using a professional editor to improve the quality of your book.
An editor will shave your 100,000-word novel down to size without sacrificing any important details or story elements.
A professional editor can help you refine your writing, catch any errors or inconsistencies, and ensure that it is the best it can be before you publish it.
Don't underestimate the value of having someone else look over your work - it can make or break the final product.
Tip #10: Continuously monitor and adjust your book's performance to maximize sales.
Last but not least, I want to emphasize the importance of continuously monitoring and adjusting your book's performance on Amazon KDP.
As a self-published author, it's up to you to take control of your book's success and make the necessary adjustments to maximize sales.
This can include updating your book's description and keywords, optimizing your pricing, and promoting your book through social media and other channels.
Is Amazon KDP The Best Platform To Publish On?
In my opinion, yes! Amazon's platform remains the top choice for many authors because of its wide reach and ease of use.
KDP allows writers to easily upload their work and make it available for purchase on Amazon, the world's largest online marketplace.
This means that authors who use KDP can reach a vast audience of potential readers.