While there are a lot of different ways to make money online, writing and selling ebooks is one method that has been around for a long time. Regardless of what niche you’re in, writing an ebook is an option if you’re looking to monetize a website or blog.
There are a lot of reasons to consider writing and selling an ebook (which will be covered in a minute), and there are unlimited possibilities. You can write informational how-to ebooks, fiction, non-fiction, recipe books, children’s books, travel guides, or any other type of book.
This article will cover all the details related to how to write an ebook, create and format the digital file, and sell the ebook. It’s a long article with a lot of details, so you may want to bookmark it for future reference.
Why Write an Ebook?
Before we get started on the details of how to write an ebook, let’s first look at some of the most compelling reasons why you might want to write one.
1. Make Money
The most obvious reason and the primary motivation for most ebook authors is to make money. Of course, the amount of money that you make from your ebook will depend on a lot of factors, but there is excellent potential. In fact, some self-published ebook authors make more money than they could have made by writing the same book for a major publisher. Regardless of whether you want to make $1,000 per month or a full-time income, writing and selling ebooks is a possibility.
2. Passive Source of Income
Not only can you make money by writing and selling an ebook, but it can also be a source of passive income. Of course, it will take a lot of work upfront to write the ebook, but once it is written, it can be sold over-and-over again with little additional effort on your part.
Thanks to ecommerce platforms like SendOwl, it’s easy to automate the process of accepting payments and delivering the digital file to customers.
If the book is on an evergreen topic, it could generate sales for years to come.
Part of the reason that ebooks can be a great source of passive income is that they typically involve only a very small amount of customer service. Another option for selling information products is to create an online course. Courses can be great for making profits, but they typically require much more customer service compared to an ebook.
With an ebook, customers can download the file immediately after the purchase, or maybe it’s emailed to them (depending on your setup). Customers don’t need to log in. Courses involve logins and that alone will create more customer service. Students lose their login info or have trouble logging in from a different device, and they’ll need assistance.
Courses also tend to be more interactive, so there may be more questions asked. Many courses include access to a private Facebook group where students can ask questions and get answers. That creates a lot of work related to customer service.
Ebooks, on the other hand, are pretty low maintenance. If you’re looking for a passive way to make money, and ebook can be a great option.
3. Grow Your Email List
Although the main focus of this article is writing ebooks to sell, you could also write an ebook to give away as a freebie for your email subscribers. Using a lead magnet (bribe) is one of the most effective ways to grow an email list.
Aside from using an ebook as a lead magnet, you could also grow your email list with a low-priced ebook. Many marketers love to grow a “buyers list”, which is an email list of customers who have actually purchased a product from you.
A low-priced product like an ebook is relatively easy to sell and can help you to build a nice email list of people who have shown enough interest to actually pull out their credit card and buy a product from you. It may start with a small purchase, but it could lead to a bigger purchase in the future.
4. Brand Yourself as an Expert
Writing a book or an ebook can also have a powerful impact on how you are viewed. If your goal is to establish yourself or brand yourself as an expert on a particular subject, writing an ebook is an excellent way to do it.
Even though anyone can write, self-publish, and sell an ebook, there is still a sense that someone is an expert if they have literally written the book on a subject.
Aside from the money that you make by selling the ebook, becoming known as an expert can have an equally powerful impact on your future income. It may lead to consulting work, increased traffic to your website, speaking engagements, major book deals, mainstream news features, partnership opportunities, and more.
5. Low Start-Up Costs
While many types of business will require a significant investment to get started, you probably won’t need to spend any money to get started as a self-published author. You can use Google Docs, Canva, and other free tools if you’re looking for a way to make money online without paying anything.
How to Write an Ebook
If you’re convinced that writing an ebook may be the right choice for you, let’s take a look at the process from start to finish.
Step 1: Choose a Topic
First, you’ll need to pick a topic for your book. Of course, if you have an existing website or blog where you plan to sell the ebook, you’ll want to make sure that the topic is as relevant as possible to the existing audience of your site or blog. But here are some specific things that can help you to determine what you should write about.
What is Your Expertise?
A good place to start is by thinking about what you do best. If you’re writing an informational ebook, what expertise do you have that you can share with others? To create the best ebook possible, focus on your strengths.
What are You Known for?
This may lead you to the same answer as the previous question, but it could be something different. If you are known for something, writing on that topic or a related topic could make it easier to sell your ebook because people already see you as an expert.
How Do You Want to Brand Yourself?
Because writing a book or ebook can be so powerful for branding yourself as an expert, think about how you want others to see you. Do you want to be known as an expert on something specific? If so, that’s a great topic to choose for your ebook. Maybe you have some expertise that most people aren’t aware of. Writing an ebook is a great way to make people aware of your expertise and to start to brand yourself as an expert.
Choose an Evergreen Topic
This isn’t 100% necessary, but it is very helpful for long-term passive income. Think about any topic that you are considering. Would the ebook still be relevant five years from now? If so, you could continue to sell the book for years to come.
Step 2: Identify Your Target Audience
Once you’ve decided on a topic, now it’s time to think about the exact audience that you want to target. Consider things like gender, age, occupation, income, hobbies, family situations, fears, and any other details that can help you nail down a specific audience that you think will be interested in this ebook. If it’s an informational or how-to ebook, are you targeting beginners or people with some level of experience or expertise on the subject?
Write down the details of your target audience so you can refer to this information at any time during the process of writing the ebook. As you outline the ebook and write the text, keep this target audience in mind. Be sure that what you’re writing will be relevant to the exact audience that you are targeting.
The details of your target audience can also be helpful when your ebook is finished and you start to market it. If you’re paying for ads (for example, Facebook ads), the details of your target audience can help you to make sure that the right people see your ads. If you’ll be marketing your ebook through guest posts or podcast appearances, you can use this information to make sure that you are getting exposure on blogs and podcasts that reach a very similar audience.
Step 3: Can People Already Get This for Free?
Let’s be honest, there is a lot of free content available online, and there are tens of thousands of free ebooks. If there are free ebooks already written about the same topic as your ebook, how will yours be different and better?
Just because there are free ebooks written on the same subject certainly does not mean that you can’t or shouldn’t write an ebook to sell on the same topic. But it does mean that you’ll need to be sure that your ebook is truly worth paying for, and that you can provide a compelling reason why potential customers should be willing to pay for yours when they could get a different one for free.
Step 4: Choose Your Software
Writing an ebook may sound more complicated than it is. The good news is that you can use very simple tools to write an ebook. Microsoft Word, OpenOffice, and Google Docs are all capable of helping you to create your ebook. With any of these, you can easily save or export your document as a PDF at any time. PDF is the most common format for ebooks, although you will need to format for Kindle if you plan to sell the ebook on Amazon (we’ll get into that later).
For now, just use Word, OpenOffice, or Google Docs and if the ebook needs to be formatted into some other type of file, that can be done after it is written. Personally, I like Google Docs because it automatically saves into my Google Drive account and then I can access the file from anywhere.
Step 5: Create a Research Folder
Even if you’re an expert on the subject, most types of ebooks that you’ll write will also involve some research. Depending on what you are writing, this can amount to a lot of research and you’ll want to be sure that it is well organized.
Create a folder on your computer, and subfolders if needed, specifically for any research that you do. Again, I like to use Google Drive because of convenience, but you can do it however you want.
Step 6: Back It Up!
As you’re writing your ebook, be sure that you are saving it in multiple places. You don’t want to lose hours and hours of hard work because of a computer crash or hard drive failure.
Step 7: Outline the Chapters
Before you begin writing, create an outline for the ebook. The outline should include, at a minimum, the chapters. I’d also recommend outlining each chapter with the main point and subpoints. The more detailed of an outline you have, the easier the writing process will be.
Aside from speed, the outline is also incredibly helpful for keeping your ebook well-organized and structured for the reader to consume the content as easily as possible.
Step 8: Set Aside Large Chunks of Time for Writing
There’s no way around it, writing an ebook is going to take some time.
Now, many ebooks are significantly shorter than traditional hardback or paperback books, so it’s possible that your ebook could be a lot easier and faster to write than a typical book. But even then, you’ll still need to invest a good deal of time for writing, editing, proofreading.
Generally, writing is easier to do when you have bigger chunks of time. Chances are, you’re trying to write your ebook around a schedule that involves a full-time job, social activities, and maybe a lot of family commitments. That may leave smaller windows of time.
If at all possible, find a way to schedule some bigger blocks of time where you can write for a few hours. Constantly starting and stopping will make it harder to get in the flow with your writing, and it may lead to a choppy ebook that isn’t well put together.
When you have a few hours to write, you can make a lot of progress in a day.
Step 9: Choose a Title
After you’ve written your ebook, it’s time to decide on a title. It’s possible that you came up with a title before you started the book, but sometimes it’s easier to title an article, book, or ebook after it is written.
The title of your ebook is very important, so don’t rush through this step. The title should be enticing to your target audience, and it should also let people know exactly what your book is about and what they can get out of it.
Here are a few tips for deciding on a title:
Come Up with Lots of Title Ideas
Don’t just go with the first title that you come up with. Take the time to brainstorm a lot of ideas and make a list of possibilities. Write down even the ideas that you don’t think are very good, because there may be a part of that title that you can use. It may help you to come up with another idea that is similar, but better. You’ll forget a lot of your ideas if you don’t have them recorded somewhere, so either write them in a notebook or keep a digital record of them.
Consider Domain Name Availability
This isn’t completely necessary, but you may want to create a website for your ebook. Think about the domain name that you would want to use for any title that you are considering. Check the domain name to see if it is available. (I recommend NameCheap for buying domain names.)
When you decide on a name for your ebook, you may want to go ahead and register the domain name even if you don’t plan to use it right away. That way you’ll have the domain name and no one else can register it.
Search for Other Books with the Same Title
I’d also recommend that you check to see if any other books have been written with any names that you are considering. If there are other books with the same name, move on to a different idea. To research this, you can search Google, Amazon, and Barnes and Noble.
Step 10: Edit Your Ebook
Once the book is written, you’ll be ready to move on to the editing stage.
Consider Hiring an Editor
While you could do the editing yourself, it’s a good idea (if you have the budget) to hire an editor. An experienced editor will be able to bring a fresh perspective to the project and you’re much more likely to get a higher-quality final product.
There are a lot of different ways you could go about hiring an editor. If you’re not familiar with any editors, one of the easiest ways is to create a listing on Upwork, explain the project, and let freelancers submit bids. You don’t want to simply hire the person with the lowest price. Check their qualifications and find a qualified editor who also offers good value. Although there are some low-quality providers on Upwork, there are plenty of highly-skilled and experienced workers as well.
Read Through the Ebook Several Times and Look for Mistakes
If you’re doing the editing yourself, be sure to read through the ebook several times because you will be certain to miss some mistakes the first time through. In addition to spelling and grammatical errors, also look for ways to change the wording and improve the writing as needed. This is the chance to put the finishing touches on your ebook.
For more ways to make money by writing, please see:
- 30+ Websites to Write and Get Paid Instantly
- 20+ Freelance Writing Jobs for Beginners
- Freelance Writing 101: Build a Successful Writing Career
How to Create an Ebook (Formatting)
Now that we’ve covered the ins-and-outs of writing your ebook, it’s time to talk about formatting.
Choose a Format
First, you’ll need to decide on the file formats that you want to use. This can have a big impact on your success with the ebook, because the format will impact how many people are able to access the ebook.
The PDF format has been a common choice for ebooks for a long time. Almost everyone has the capability to easily open a PDF file on their device (desktop, laptop, tablet, smartphone), and customers are comfortable and familiar with PDFs (which means less customer service for you and fewer frustrated customers).
Not only is PDF a format that most of your customers can access, but it’s also very easy to create PDFs. You can easily use Word, Google Docs, or OpenOffice to save your document as a PDF, no special software or skills required. I prefer Google Docs and you can learn more here: How to Convert a Google Doc to PDF.
If your book is highly visual and has a lot of photos or images, you may want a more specific design or layout than what you can get simply by using a word processor. If that’s the case, you can hire someone on Upwork or Fiverr to use InDesign to create a better-looking ebook design for you (still save it as a PDF).
One factor that will have a big influence on your format of choice is where you will be selling the ebook. If you’re selling it on your own website or blog you can offer it in whatever format you choose (PDF is recommended), but if you are selling it on another platform, you will need to follow their guidelines.
For example, if you plan to sell your ebook on Amazon, it will need to be formatted for Kindle. Formatting for Kindle can be a little more complicated than saving a document as a PDF, especially if you have never done it before. While there are tutorials that will show you how to do it, you may be better off hiring someone to convert your ebook to Kindle format. It’s surprisingly cheap, and you can easily hire someone on Upwork or Fiverr who will take your ebook and format it for Kindle.
Choose a Page Size
If you’re using Word, Google Docs, OpenOffice, or InDesign, you can easily change the page size or layout. A standard size of 8.5 inches by 11 inches is ideal for most ebooks. Some photography books (and other visual books) opt to go with a landscape layout rather than portrait layout, but that depends on the images that you’ll be using.
Use Plenty of Whitespace
Remember that most people who will be reading your ebook will be reading it on a screen rather than printing it on paper. Writing for the screen requires that you use plenty of whitespace to make it easy for readers.
Use short paragraphs and break them up with a blank line between paragraphs. You can also use subheaders to break up the text and make it easier to read.
Choose Basic Fonts and Colors
Play it conservative when it comes to fonts and colors. Keep the font size large enough that it is easy to read, and avoid any script fonts or other types of fonts that are difficult to read. The same goes for colors. Be sure that the color of the text provides enough contrast and is easy to read. Black or dark gray text on a white background is usually the ideal choice.
You can also use colored text for things like headlines and hyperlinks, but be sure that any color that you use is easy to read on the white background (and don’t use too many different colors).
Use Consistent Styling
As you are formatting your ebook, be sure that you are using a consistent style. This involves things like consistent colors, fonts, font sizes, and spacing. Your ebook will look jumbled and unprofessional if the styling is inconsistent.
Make Sure Any Photos/Images Are Licensed for Use
Most likely, your ebook will involve some sort of photos or images. Be sure that any photos/images used are either your own photos or licensed appropriately. If you’re purchasing a license from a stock photo website, be sure to check the license for details, and reach out to the company if you have any questions. Free photo websites like Pixabay, Pexels, and Unplash allow you to use their photos in commercial projects, but keep in mind that some potential issues could still arise.
For example, the photographers who have taken these photos are not providing a model release. Also, some photos on those sites include copyrighted brands or images. For example, a person in the photo may be wearing a t-shirt with a company’s logo, and that has the potential to cause issues if you use the photo in your ebook. In general, the safest thing to do is to purchase a license from a stock photo website and verify that the license allows the photo to be used in an ebook that will be sold.
Create a Table of Contents
Your ebook should include a table of contents so readers can easily navigate the book and find what they want. Fortunately, creating a table of contents isn’t that difficult. This article shows how to create a table of contents in Google Docs.
Add a Header and Footer
A header or footer can also help to make your ebook look more professional. You can include page numbers in either the header or the footer, as well as the title of your ebook. This page covers everything you need to know about headers and footers in Google Docs.
Add Copyright and Disclosures
Your ebook should have a copyright page and any disclosures that are needed. The disclosures will depend on the content and nature of the book. For example, if you’re writing a finance book you’ll want to include a disclosure stating that the ebook should not be considered financial advice, etc.
For all of the details related to the copyright page, Book Copyright Page Examples for Your Ebook.
Write a Brief Author Bio
It’s a good idea to include an author bio with your book. The length of your bio can vary, but one page or less is a good target.
Your bio can help readers to feel like they connect with you a little better, and it can also help to turn one-time ebook readers into long-term fans. Include a link to your website or blog and a way for them to join your email list.
Print It as a Test
Once you have your book formatted, save it as a PDF and see how it looks. You can also print it as a test. If you notice any formatting issues, go back and correct them before going any further.
Hire a Cover Designer
The cover of an ebook is extremely important to its success, so don’t rush this part. I know you’re anxious to get your ebook up for sale, but if you don’t have a professional-looking cover, people may assume the content of the book is also low quality. The old saying is that “you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover”, but more often than not, we do judge by the cover.
If you’re a talented designer, you may be able to create your own ebook cover. But for the rest of us, hiring a designer is the best choice. Fortunately, it’s not hard at all to find a good designer at a reasonable price. You can search Fiverr for ebook cover designers and you’ll find plenty of possibilities. You could also post a gig on Upwork and you’ll get plenty of bids. Regardless of which approach you use, be sure to look through the portfolios of any designer that you are considering, and see if they have examples of some designs in a similar style that would work well with your ebook.
How to Sell an Ebook
If you’ve made it through the stages of writing and formatting your ebook, now you’re ready for the fun part – making money!
On Your Own, or In a Marketplace?
The first thing you need to decide is how and where you are going to sell the ebook. You can sell it on your own website or blog, or you can sell it on a marketplace. Of course, Amazon.com is by far the most popular marketplace for selling ebooks.
There are several advantages to selling at your own website or blog:
- You’ll probably be able to charge more (competition on Amazon tends to drag prices down)
- You’ll be in control, rather than at the mercy of Amazon
- Selling an ebook on your own site is quick and easy to set up (thanks to platforms like SendOwl)
- You won’t need to share the revenue with Amazon
- You’ll be able to build an email list of people who have purchased your book
However, there are also some very significant advantages to selling your ebook on Amazon:
- Amazon has a massive audience that you can reach, even if you have no website or audience of your own
- Even if you have your own website or blog, Amazon allows you to reach people who would never come across your website or blog
- Your book may sell for a lower price, but you can make up for that by selling a higher volume
There is no right or wrong decision here, it’s just a matter of what is the best fit for you. It’s also possible to sell your ebook on Amazon and on your own website, as long as you are not enrolled in KDP Select.
In my opinion, the biggest factor in this decision is whether or not you have your own audience. If you have an existing blog, website, or email list with an established following, you’ll probably want to sell the ebook through your own website. And if you don’t have your own established blog or following, you’ll probably get better results if you start by selling on Amazon. Without an established audience, making sales through your own website will be pretty difficult and will take a lot of time.
Decide on a Price
Choosing a price can be tricky for your first ebook. If you’re going to be selling on Amazon, the decision is probably easier. Most ebooks on Amazon are sold for low prices, so you’ll have to keep your book priced pretty low if you want people to buy it. You may even want to consider giving it away for free for a while to get some momentum and get some reviews. Later on, you can increase the price and it will make it easier for your book to generate sales.
If you are selling the ebook on your own website, you could look for competing ebooks and see what they are selling for. Honestly, the price of ebooks can be all over the place, so just because you see some other sites selling competing for low prices, don’t feel like you have to sell yours for a low price. Be sure that you’re comfortable with the price that you choose and that it’s a good deal for you and for the customer.
In my opinion, it’s easier to increase the price of a book than it is to decrease it, so I prefer to start lower. Increasing the price shows that you have demand for the book and people who have already purchased it will be happy that they bought when they did.
If you start high and lower the price (aside from limited-time sales), it may give potential customers the impression that the ebook is not selling and you’re lowering the price out of desperation. Also, past customers who purchased the book at a higher price may feel like they got a bad deal. For those reasons, I prefer to start with a price on the lower side and increase it if needed.
Choose a Platform to Sell and Deliver the Ebook
If you decide to sell the book on your own website or blog, you’ll need a system that will accept payments and automatically deliver the ebook to customers. This may sound intimidating if you’ve never done it before, but it’s actually pretty simple.
There are a number of different ecommerce platforms that will work, and my advice is to go with one that emphasizes simplicity. Setting up an ecommerce system can be very complicated, but there are several that allow you to sell digital products very easily. Here are a few of the best options:
- SendOwl – I’ve mentioned SendOwl a few times, and it is definitely my first recommendation if you want to sell an ebook on your own site. I used SendOwl for several years to sell ebooks and other downloadable products (I no longer own those sites, so I’m not currently using SendOwl). It’s extremely easy, very affordable, and has plenty of great features.
- DPD – DPD is kind of similar to SendOwl, and I’ve also used DPD in the past, although I have far more experience with SendOwl.
- Easy Digital Downloads – This is a free WordPress plugin that is made specifically for selling digital products. Although the plugin is free, there are many add-ons that you can buy. In the end, you’ll probably spend a lot more to use Easy Digital Downloads than SendOwl or DPD, and personally, I like SendOwl and DPD better.
Both SendOwl and DPD offer free trials and clear instructions that will get you started. Basically, the steps you need to take are:
- Sign up for the free trial to create your account.
- Complete the information and basic settings for your account.
- Create your first product, which involves entering the title and price, and upload the PDF file.
- After you create the product, you’ll get the code for a “buy now” button. Copy that code and paste it into your website and people will be able to buy your ebook.
You’ll also have control to customize things like the email that will be sent after someone purchases your product.
Create a Sales Page
If you’re selling the ebook on your own site, you’ll need to create a sales page. If you’re selling on Amazon, you’ll need to complete the product details for the listing page.
When you’re selling an ebook on your own site, the sales page will have a huge impact on your success (or lack of success), so it’s not something that you want to rush.
Creating an effective sales page is a much bigger topic than I can cover in this article, but you can see a detailed guide from Blogging Wizard here – How to Create a Sales Page for Your First Online Course or Product.
Promote It to Your Email List
If you have an existing email list, you definitely want to take advantage of this by promoting your ebook to your email list. To get the most out of it, schedule multiple emails over the course of a week that will build up excitement, explain what the book has to offer, answer any common questions, and (ideally) offer your subscribers an exclusive discount.
If you don’t have an existing email list, this is something that you’ll want to work on to make future ebook releases easier and more profitable. Many ebook authors offer a free chapter or some other freebie as a lead magnet to attract subscribers to their email list.
Create an Email Follow Up Sequence for New Subscribers
Not only do you want to promote your ebook to your email list at the time of the launch, but your email list can and should continue to be a valuable resource that can constantly generate sales.
If you’re using ConvertKit or any of the other leading email marketing providers, you can set up a sequence of emails that will go out to your new subscribers at specific intervals. You can use one or more of these emails to promote your ebook, and optionally offer a discount.
If you are continually adding new subscribers to your email list, you’ll always have these automated emails that are reaching new people every day.
Promote It on Your Website or Blog
One of the reasons why writing and selling an ebook can be such a great way to make money online is because it can be a relatively passive source of income if you have consistent traffic coming to your website or blog.
Obviously, writing an ebook will take a lot of time and effort, but once it is written, there’s not a whole of work that will be involved with selling it or providing customer service after the sale. If you have a steady flow of visitors to your website, and the ebook is of interest to those visitors, it’s possible that the e-book will generate passive income for months or even years.
To maximize sales, promote the ebook in prominent locations on your website or blog. This can include:
- Your homepage
- A sticky header or footer bar
- An ad within the post content
- An ad directly below the post content
- On your “thank you” page after a visitor subscribes to your email list
In addition, you should also mention the ebook within your blog post content whenever it is relevant. More exposure will lead to more sales.
If you’re selling the ebook through your own website, one option for increasing sales is to start an affiliate program (both SendOwl and DPD make it easy to set up an affiliate program). With an affiliate program, other bloggers and influencers will be able to promote your ebook and earn a commission for any sales that they generate. It’s a great deal for you because you don’t owe anything unless a sale is made.
Simply setting up an affiliate program is not enough though. You’ll probably need to proactively recruit people to promote your ebook. You could reach out to bloggers who target an audience that would be interested in your book, and see if they would be interested in joining the affiliate program.
The best thing you can do to increase interest in your affiliate program is to offer a generous commission. Most ebook affiliate programs will pay a commission between 25% and 50% for each sale generated, so if you’re offering 40%-50% per sale, you should have more interest from people who want to make money.
To help your affiliates, you could also hire a designer to create banner ads that affiliates can use on their sites (again, you can easily find designers on Upwork or Fiverr). You can also offer to do interviews with bloggers who are affiliates, or go on podcasts and allow the podcast hosts to join your affiliate program.
Sell on Third-Party Websites
Although the two main options for selling your ebook are 1) your own site, and 2) Amazon or other marketplaces, there are still other possibilities. Aside from marketplaces like Amazon, there are also third-party websites that can be great places to sell your ebook.
Probably the best possibility would be deal sites. For example, Ultimate Bundles runs several different themed bundles throughout the year. You could reach out to them and see if you can get your ebook included in one of their bundles.
There may also be some niche deal sites that target an audience that would be interested in your book. If you sell a photography ebook, you could reach out to PhotoWhoa about selling your ebook on their site. If you write about design or development, you could reach out to MightyDeals. There are a lot of possibilities here, you just have to find the ones that would be a good fit for your particular ebook.
Blog Reviews and Giveaways
One way to get exposure for your ebook is through blog reviews and giveaways. With smaller blogs, you may be able to get some reviews of your ebook written if you are willing to give the blogger a free review copy. This is especially effective if you have an affiliate program and you reach out to other bloggers who actively promote other affiliate offers.
Aside from reviews, you can also host or sponsor giveaways or contests where winners will get a free copy of your ebook. You can host these giveaways on your own site, or partner with other bloggers to reach their audience (again, this works well if you’re collaborating with affiliates to run a giveaway).
Black Friday and Cyber Monday only come once per year, but it’s a great opportunity for making a lot of sales quickly. Obviously, almost every retailer runs specific promos at Black Friday, and the same is true for many people and businesses that sell digital products.
If you have your own email list, be sure that you have a special offer ready to take advantage of Black Friday and email the list at least once to make that special offer. You’ll also want to plan in advance to get information to all of your affiliates about any Black Friday deals that you’ll be running so they can set up promos for their blogs or email lists.
You can also search for blogs that create pages to list all of the Black Friday sales in a particular niche, and reach out to them in advance to see if they will include your deal (and you can offer your affiliate program to them).
When I used to run photography sites, I would plan about a month in advance for Black Friday. In October of 2015, I used Google searches to find blogs that had published lists of Black Friday deals for photographers the previous year. I reached out to those blogs and asked if they were planning to publish another deal roundup this year. I gave them details about the sale on my own products, as well as a link to join my affiliate program. With that simple approach, I made thousands of dollars extra in a short period of time. The next few years, I would reach out to the same blogs and get some easy promotion that way.
Promoting an ebook is an ongoing effort. If you keep traffic coming to your site and your ebook is prominently featured on the site, you should have a nice source of ongoing income. But keep thinking about other ways to promote the ebook and get more sales. The more sales you make with your first ebook, the more buyers you’ll have on your email list, and the easier it will be to promote other ebooks that you write and release in the future.
Writing and selling an ebook is one of the most effective ways to make money online. It will certainly take some work, but you’ll have the potential to generate passive income for months or years to come. Not only is it a great way to make money, but it’s also extremely effective for establishing your reputation and branding yourself as an expert.
The process of writing and selling an ebook can be pretty intimidating if you’ve never done it before, but if you focus on it one step at a time, it’s very achievable. Hopefully, this article helped to show you those steps that you’ll need to take.