2. Follow The Habits of Bestsellers
Authors who generally make a lot of money on the platform are those who manage to land among the best sellers at some point. It follows that you can increase your earnings on Amazon KDP if you learn the habits of best-selling authors and be willing to follow them. How do you create like a bestseller?
- Fine-tune your book title: When writing an article or marketing email, the title plays a strong role in helping readers decide whether they want to read it or not. The same goes for creating a book.
Invest some time in crafting the best possible title that will give potential readers a whiff of what your book is about – but enough to generate strong curiosity. If you are new to writing, you can use a book title generator to help you with brainstorming suitable titles. You may also consider acquainting yourself with words that evoke strong emotions in readers, and which can fit into your book title.
In addition to the main title, it is often a good idea to also write a subtitle. This is supporting information that helps to further awaken interest in readers. For example, the subtitle can speak to who the book is for, mention what question or problem will be solved in the book, or give some idea of the era, place, environment, etc. the book is set in.
- Write well: Well-written content is a key feature that sets apart best-selling writers from the competition on Amazon. Even authors who create low-content material (such as coloring books and journals) often benefit from book descriptions that are written properly.
Eliminate typos and grammatical errors by ensuring you proofread your book once you have finished writing. You can use Grammarly or a similar app to help limit errors and lessen the amount of proofreading you will need to do. If possible (and especially if it’s a long novel), you can hire a professional copy editor to ensure the writing flows well and that repetitions and redundancies are removed.
Another thing to pay attention to is how well the content is laid out on the page. There are recommended eBook formatting strategies for Kindle that, if followed, can ensure the content in your book is laid out properly. In addition, there are a number of apps that you can use to format your eBook, including Book Design Templates and Vellum (for Mac users). You may also consider hiring a professional freelancer to do it for you.
- Invest in a high-quality book cover: A killer cover image helps to draw attention to your book and increases the chance of getting sales. With the competition being so fierce among authors on Amazon, having a standout book cover is essential.
Your book cover should be professionally done by a graphic artist who knows what they are doing. If you have exceptional graphic design skills, then you should go for it. Otherwise, it is best to outsource this part of the job.
- Write a winning description: Readers want to know what your book is about and what to expect before deciding to read it. This is where having a great book description comes in. An effective book description does not merely summarize the contents of the book. Instead, it persuades the reader that your work is worth their time. While you don’t want to explain in detail what the book is about, the description needs to spark curiosity and lead readers to see what potential benefits are in store for them.
- Offer multiple formats: Amazon KDP allows you to cater to different kinds of readers. Some people will prefer to hold a physical book in their hands, for instance, while others prefer to read from the Kindle app. There are also those who prefer to listen by purchasing audio books. Whatever the case, it is possible to ramp up sales if you make your book available in the different formats, thereby allowing all types of readers to get your book in the form they prefer.
- Create a series: In an age where people increasingly binge on content (think addictive Netflix series), publishing a series of books is a great way to increase your earning potential. This is especially true if you are writing fictional story books.
A one-off story will be purchased once and then the reader may or may not decide to check out your future releases. But creating a series can help to keep your readers constantly looking forward to what comes next. Instead of one purchase, readers will keep coming back to buy the follow up stories in the series.
Being able to deliver a good book series requires excellent writing skills. Each book should leave a question in the reader’s mind, enough to make them want to get the next installment so they can satisfy that curiosity.
- Increase your law of average with more books: The Amazon KDP algorithm works in a similar way to Google – authors who publish on a regular and consistent basis will, naturally, see their books being shown to readers more often than those who only have a few books.
Publishing plenty of books is also necessary if you join the Kindle Unlimited program. This is where you earn based on number of pages read rather than individual book sales.
Writing five or more books per year can be daunting for writers who are not creating low-content books. It is possible to pull it off if you are writing full-time. But many writers have 9-5 jobs and can only spend a few hours weekly on writing books. In such a case, you may consider hiring ghostwriters. Of course, this requires you to have money to invest in outsourcing skillful writers.
- Set the right price: The price for your books naturally affect how much money you can make. As it stands, Amazon offers three pricing tiers with different royalty shares.
- $0.99 – $2.98 (35% royalty payout)
- $2.99 – $9.99 (70% royalty payout)
- $10 and up (35% royalty payout)
Obviously, the second tier allows you to earn more percentage royalties, but before you go rushing to price your book between $2.99 and $9.99, you should know there are pros and cons involved.
For starters, people are quicker to buy a $0.99 title than one that is priced higher, so this might be a better option to go with if you are just starting out on Amazon KDP. This lower price is also ideal when promoting new books – you can always increase prices later on.
Additionally, readers want to know they are getting a certain amount of content for the price, so a short story may not warrant the higher price in their sight, especially if there are similar books in your category that are priced below $2.99.
Another option is to sell your books initially for $0. This might sound counterintuitive, but giving away free books can be a great strategy to capture reviews and potential customers if you don’t yet have an audience.