Two weeks ago I finished writing my second eBook and within an hour of putting it up for sale I had sold one eBook at $15. I have sold a total of 4 copies now which is really exciting.
Since then I have had so many people asking me loads of questions about how to create and sell an eBook.
OK so I am sure there are some internet marketing gurus that will show you how to sell thousands of ebooks overnight and become a millionaire, you’ve all seen these those claims around I’m sure. You know, the ones that say you can make money online easily and fast, without any hard work?
Well I did things my own way and it took a lot of hard work and quite some time to get to this point, but I did sell 4 eBooks and I think this really is more realistic.
Just remember that what you can do 4 times you can do hundreds of times and the beauty of this is that it is now residual income. The eBook is written, all the hard work is done. Yes I will continue to promote my eBook over time but the eBook is written and it will continue to earn money for me for many years to come.
Oh and just so you know, the first eBook I wrote I created to give away free to subscribers on my website, so feel free to grab that from my side bar subscribe form if you like.
Today I am going to take you through the exact process that I went through to write my own eBook, put it all together and get to the point of selling it. I hope that you find this process helpful so you can also find the motivation to do the same.
How to Create and Sell an eBook Online
- How to write an eBook
- How to create an eBook,
- Create a professional 3D eBook cover
- Put your eBook for sale online
- Get your email marketing sorted for promoting the eBook and growing your list
- Write a blog post promoting your eBook
- Share your blog post on social media
- Contact online marketers and bloggers in your niche
- Get Positive Reviews for your eBook
- Keep on Marketing your eBook
Table of Contents
How to Write an eBook
Obviously the first thing you will need to do is write the actual content for the eBook. This task is obviously going to take the most effort from you and take up most of your time.
Write a Quality eBook
Firstly I want to tell you what my general opinion is about eBooks online – they suck. Most eBooks, especially the ones that are given away for free, are terrible.
The information in them is not great, people use huge text with lots of open spaces and they then sell it as a 100 page eBook… but there is no substance to it. If you had to use normal size text with standard spacing it would be a 3 page eBook of waffling rubbish.
If you are going to put your name to something then please make it good. Make it quality and make it worthwhile, yes even if you are giving it away for free! This is your reputation we are talking about here.
The eBook that I give away on this website to subscribers is only 9 pages long, but there is no waffling in it. It is packed full of information.
If your eBook is only 9 pages that’s fine. Please don’t try and stretch a 9 page eBook into 50 pages.
Plan your eBook
To write your eBook is quite similar to writing content for your website.
Plan what you are going to write about and break that up into chapters. Then tackle each chapter one by one until you have finished your eBook. I wrote each chapter in a separate document so that if I want to change the order of the sequence of the chapters I would be able to.
It also helps if you suddenly come up with a new idea to be able to just slot it in somewhere.
The eBook I wrote was sharing stories of my life from active addiction, so each chapter was one story from my life. The first two chapters introduced my story and why I was writing the eBook, what my goals and hopes for it was.
Start Writing and Keep Writing your eBook
The hardest part for me with both the eBooks I wrote was writing the first word!
Every time I sat down to write I got overwhelmed with the monster task in front of me. Each time I stared at my laptop for a while and then procrastinated!
Eventually I made a decision to Just Do It!
Oh dear I can’t help myself, I am going to include this motivational video… I just have to.
For my first eBook I told myself I would write a page a day until it was done. For my second eBook I wrote a chapter at a time until it was done. I found it so much easier to write when I set a small goal like one page or one chapter than sitting down knowing I have an entire eBook to write.
Once I did this I can promise you that I flew through writing my eBooks and I hope that you do too.
Write your eBook Disclaimer and Copyright Notice
You can get a lawyer to write up a disclaimer and a copyright notice for you and this is probably the best route if you can afford it.
Alternatively you can just Google for free disclaimers and copyright notices you can use for your eBook, there are plenty of them available.
Write a short introduction for your eBook
I wrote a short introduction for both eBooks just to connect with my readers and to explain why I wrote the eBooks and what my hopes were for each one. I suggest you do this too, always try and connect with your readers.
How to Create an eBook
Ok so now you have the content written for your eBook, how on earth do you put it together?
I investigated a number of ways when I wanted to create my first eBook and I struggled here. If you do some online research there are loads of websites offering free templates for eBooks.
I couldn’t make these work for me. Some of them were just plain ugly and not what I wanted and others I couldn’t figure out how to work. I’m not exactly stupid but I have to be realistic here when I say that design and technical things like this are in my list of natural talents.
Put your eBook together professionally into a pdf
I chose to create a WTB (want to buy) on my favorite online marketplace for SEO saying exactly what I wanted and I found a seller to create my eBook for me.
Here are the things that I wanted for my eBook:
- A cover page
- A disclaimer and copyright notice page
- An introduction page
- A table of contents
- The content of the eBook
- Each page to have a header with the book title and author name
- Each page to have a footer with my website name and the page number
My first eBook was a little trickier to put together due to the fact that I had some images included in the eBook content and I also added in some quotes blocks too just to make it more visually appealing.
I am going to be writing lots more eBooks and some of them will be for kids activities and things for my mommy blog, this would then be even more complicated when the time comes because it will have a lot more images and things I would need to include.
Anyway you can click here to contact the freelancer that I used to put together my eBook and discuss your unique needs with him and get a quote.
Oh yes and very importantly, I requested 2 different eBooks! One was the full eBook which was 48 pages long, made up of 17 chapters and over 21 000 words. I asked for a second pdf which was the eBook up to the end of chapter 4 which was the first 15 pages.
The second eBook was for marketing purposes, which I will explain a little later on.
Create a Professional 3D eBook cover
Once again you can create a free eBook cover online. I did loads of Googling and trying out free things and all I got was a load of frustration..and no eBook cover.
I played around with Canva where I create all my own images for my websites. They aren’t great images but I get by… but you can only make a 2D eBook cover with Canva and I am a fussy person. I wanted a 3D eBook cover for my eBooks.
The thing is that you really need something eye-catching here and while I can create images that are passable for my websites I wanted something awesome for my eBooks, something that says quality!
So yes once again you can purchase these services from freelancers at SeoClerks for a great rate, have a look how many services there are for eBook covers!
Ok so now you have everything you need to start selling your eBook, but now there is still a lot of work to be done!
Put your eBook for Sale Online
I am not going to go into all the places you can go and list your eBook online. There are loads of places where you can do this, just do a Google search.
I put my eBook up for sale on ListingDock.com and I have a few reasons that I chose this website….
Firstly it is owned by Ionicware, so it is part of the same family as SeoClerks.com. I didn’t have to even create a profile, if you are registered on one website you are on all of them. I love the SeoClerks community as much as Wealthy Affiliate so I like to be loyal.
Here are the other reasons I listed my eBook there:
- They have an affiliate program so I can encourage others to promote my eBook to make money.
- I can promote my own eBook using my own affiliate link and make more per sale because I get the 10% affiliate commission.
- There is an option to set up custom affiliate commissions, so I can make affiliate commissions to be much higher than 10% so it is more attractive for affiliate markers to promote my eBook. Yes the additional commission comes out of my sales amount, but I wouldn’t make sales if the affiliate didn’t make those sales. I personally made my affiliate commission 20% on my eBook… so yes if you would like to promote it, then please do!
- I can create multiple custom coupon codes and use those for promoting my eBook to different audiences – I created one coupon code for 10% for my email subscribers which I will get to soon!
- I can list my product on sale if I want to do even further promotions and make it stand out.
There are some things to remember when putting something up for sale on an online marketplace and this wont change whether you are listing it on Gumtree, Fiverr, Amazon, ListingDock or SeoClerks.
Take care with your listing. Write a good title and take care writing a really good description. Don’t do a rush job and check for spelling and grammar mistakes. Use quality images and this is where your eBook cover will come into play for the first time.
Firstly these online marketplaces usually rank well on Google so the more care you take with your description and title the more likely you are to rank for online searches.
Secondly you are competing with how many people on that online marketplace? Writing a good title and description will help you to really stand out above the rest.
Thirdly you need to let anyone that is interested in your product or service know exactly what they are getting and also encourage them to make the purchase. Lot’s of people will check out your listing, but only a few will buy. Making it as appealing as possible is very important.
Ok so a lot of people might consider this the end of the process and sit back and wait for sales right? Not a chance, you’re only half way there!
Get your Email Marketing sorted for your eBook!
Email marketing is amazing and giving away a free gift to encourage people to sign up for your newsletter is a great way to grow your list.
So here’s what I did!
Send the Preview of your eBook to your Current Subscribers
Yes I was going to send the preview of my eBook to new subscribers and use it to entice people to sign up, but what about my current loyal subscribers? I thought they should get it first.
So I sent an email to my list and attached the preview of the eBook, I also gave them the link to buy it if they want to and I gave them the coupon code to get 10% off.
Create a Follow Up Email with Free Gift
The next step I did was to create a follow up email which gets sent to all new subscribers to my newsletter.
It was a welcome email and I attached the pdf preview of my eBook and also gave the link to buy it with a special 10% discount coupon.
Create Email Subscribe Forms Using Free Gift
I created 3 email subscribe forms offering the first 4 chapters of my eBook as a free gift:
- An email subscribe form for the side bar of my website
- A popup email subscribe form
- A custom subscribe form for my blog post (this will be explained later)
Write a Blog Post Promoting your eBook
Writing a blog post promoting your eBook is a vital step for you to take.
Don’t forget that this is going to be one of the biggest ways to promote your eBook. If this post ranks well in Google then you will get constant organic traffic! So do your keyword research and write a really awesome post.
Remember to include your custom sign up form in this post so you can see how many people are signing up for the preview to your eBook from this post.
You can also include any other great promotional information like letting your readers know that subscribers get a 10% discount to purchase your eBook.
If the marketplace where you listed your eBook has an affiliate program you can let online marketers know about this in your blog post.
Share your Blog Post on Social Media
And I mean SHARE it. Don’t just go and pop it on Facebook once and think you are done.
I shared my blog post on 2 of my Facebook pages, on my personal Facebook profile, in 8 niche related Facebook groups, with my personal Twitter account, my website Twitter account, personal Google Plus Account, in 2 niche related Google Plus groups, personal Instagram account, personal LinkedIn account and my Pinterest account.
And then just to be sure I wrote a LinkedIn blog post about my eBook too, linking it to my blog post on my website.
Contact Online Marketers and Bloggers in your niche
Tell people about your eBook and tell them about the affiliate commission! The affiliate commission I made my eBook is 20%, that is a massive amount more than Amazon that starts affiliate commission on only 4% commission.
Give away some free copies to online marketers and bloggers so they can write genuine reviews on your eBook. Give them some images for the eBook to use for their review and the preview of your eBook to give away to their readers. Offer them special coupon codes for their readers to get special discount.
Go all out with this and remember that the more you give your marketers to promote your eBook with and the more you reward them the more they can sell for you!
Get Positive Reviews for your eBook
This is really important, follow up with the people that bought your eBook and ask them for feedback and ask them to give you a positive review on the online marketplace where they bought your eBook.
The more positive reviews you have on your eBook listing the better your chances are of having more sales.
Keep on Marketing your eBook
Yes the eBook is written, the blog post is published and the social media marketing has been done right? Don’t stop there, keep pushing your eBook and keep striving for more.
I’ve added my blog post now to my Mass Planner software so it will keep on being shared without me having to do much more.
I hope you have enjoyed this post explaining how to create and sell an eBook.