A couple of years ago I wanted to know how to sell ebooks and it took me a while to find out the best places to sell, so I thought I would write a post that would point you in the right direction of selling your e-books, that is if you have any to sell. There are many platforms online that you can use to sell ebooks, but I am going to share the ones that are working for me, so if this subject is up your street, then read on…
If I share with you all the different places you can use for your ebooks, then this post would be about a mile long, so this is the condensed version with several places that will get you started, and you can always add more later. I will tell you each one I use, how easy or difficult it was to publish, and what kind of results I have experienced.
When you get bestseller status things just snowball and books just fly off the digital shelves, pity I haven’t got that yet then 🙂
Write Your E-book
It is an easy process to write an ebook and you probably already know how to do it, but just in case you don’t, let me enlighten you.
You basically just write your book within Microsoft Word or Open Office, and if you have Apple, whatever the equivalent is, I think it might be Pages for Mac, but I might be wrong. I believe you can also get Word on Apple now. Anyway any simple word processing platform will be fine.
Once you have written your book, and proof read it, you can then convert it to a PDF file, you can do this directly inside Microsoft Word and Open Office, but I am not sure on the other platforms. There are many free online PDF converters, just search and you will find plenty if your word processing platform does not convert for you.
Once converted to PDF you essentially have an ebook, and you can sell in this format, that is how easy it is to create an ebook. The trouble is that you will not be able to sell your ebook everywhere online in the PDF format as different platforms have their own formats, but I will explain this as I go on.
Sell On Your Website
This is the easiest way to sell your ebooks, and in the simple PDF format, but you obviously need to have a website. If you do not have a website, they are very easy to build these days, and you can build one for free.
If you have a website, or are going off to get one, then you can sell your ebook directly from your site, you just create a new page and write a little about your ebook, then add an image and a buy button.
I use Paypal and they provide Buy Buttons for you to add to your page which will take your customers directly to a payment page. This is probably the easiest method to set up, with a very easy payment system.
I have my ebooks on one of my other websites and although I am not selling millions of copies, they do sell through this method and when a copy sells I get an email from Paypal telling me that someone has purchased a copy and the money is in my account, its a beautiful thing.
Sell On Amazon Kindle
This was the second route I went down to get my books selling more copies, it is free to publish your books on Kindle and they are there for sale as long as you want them to be, but there is a catch, okay its not a catch, but it does complicate things somewhat. Good old Amazon have their very own formatting and you have to submit an ebook that conforms to that formatting, which is not that straight forward.
I did not have a clue how to format for Kindle and spent money on buying a Kindle template, this meant I had to copy and paste my text from my word document into this template, and then do some jigery pokery to get my work ready to submit for Kindle. It took me three attempts to get it right, but eventually I pulled it off.
I should have gone to Fiverr 🙂
My second book was a lot easier to publish on Kindle and it was not because I had done it once already, it is a big tip I came across using the next platform.
Sell On Create Space
I went to create space because I also wanted to sell physical copies of my books on Amazon and after publishing the Kindle version of my first book, I heard about Create Space, which by the way is owned by Amazon.
Create Space will convert your ebook into a paperback, and their formatting is easier to get right, you can use their tools to create a paperback version of your ebook that they will load onto Amazon and their own book store.
The best thing is, and here is the big tip I was talking about (Drum Roll Please), Create Space will also covert your book into Kindle format and submit it to Amazon. The time and money I would have saved if I had known, that is why my second book was easy to publish on Kindle, hey ho.
Another good little feature of Create Space is that you can purchase copies of your paperback version from your dashboard within your members area, this worked out a lot cheaper than if I were to purchase my book through one of the online retail outlets. You might be thinking, why would he order his own book, I will tell you. To let friends and family read it for feedback, plus I also made a few sales because of family and friends talking to other people about my books, moving on.
Sell On Smashwords
This is a great platform, not for any other reason than I just liked the website and how it was laid out when I checked it out, but once I got my books on their it did turn out to be a great platform, so the first impression followed through. Anyway it is a good platform, and my books are on there, it is not easy to get them on there though, or is it?
You may be confused, but hear me out. When I started looking into publishing my books on Smashwords it looked and sounded even harder to achieve than my first experience with Kindle, their formatting is a minefield, you have to pass the Autovetter, and its scary.
I thought I am not having this, no way am I going to spend hours, or even days mucking about and trying to get this formatting right, I just was not interested in jumping through hoops. Get this though, I achieved it with just 5 minutes work for each book, I am a formatting Wizard.
I took a trip to Fiverr, and found someone with 5 star status from over two thousand buyers and her gig title is “I will format your ebook for Smashwords to pass Autovetter” I was in and spent 2 minutes sending my word file to her for formatting, and 3 minutes submitting it to Smashwords when she returned it formatted.
$5 and 5 minutes, its a no brainer.
Okay so there are 4 platforms that you can publish your ebook on, they might have been difficult, but now you know how to publish them with ease. This can be a great way to make some money online, you do the work once and the product is there to sell forever. This is the beauty of ebooks, the product is available to sell forever, no selling out and no restocking, a bit of hard work producing the book and you get paid over and over.
Do not be under the impression that by publishing your e-books on these platforms that you will hit bestseller status faster than you can turn a page, I mean you might be lucky, but it is unlikely. You do have to spend some time marketing your book and getting it noticed, but you could hit the jackpot.
I hope you enjoyed my information on how to sell ebooks.