The way to Write an Amazon Topseller


At the time of writing, my initial book is sitting at #8 in its category, having 7 x 5* critiques (I took a screenshot to prove it). Now I’m thrilled! I never dreamed of it would get ranked in any way!

Amazon sales rank is actually a mysterious thing. I oversimplify, but it seems to be based on the number of sales per hour, with a weighting to adjust for long-term bestsellers such as Harry Potter.

ALRIGHT, so I don’t know how many other ebooks are in the ‘sales and marketing category, or how long it will eventually stay in the top 10 (it’s dipped in and out at the very least three times so far, to our knowledge – not that will I’m tracking it continuously! ). And, to be good, I don’t yet realize if that represents product sales of 2, 000 books, twenty books, or 2 publications! My printer, Lulu, images books on demand (minimum quantity 1), and is because of sends’ creator revenues’ into my PayPal account right after 6 to 8 weeks.

That said, I think it can still be an impressive achievement. Actually, it is an underestimate, as I additionally sell copies direct so that they are not counted on Amazon. com ranking.

‘The Little Seafood Guide to DIY Marketing’ is actually my first venture into publishing – it’s a collection of tips and stories that were issued in my newsletter in recent years. The book ended up being available from June of the new year, but people only started off buying it when it ‘went live on Amazon throughout October. It’s as if the idea suddenly became real the instant it was available on Amazon.

And so here’s how I did it.

Let’s take assume you already have a good idea, some sort of title, a target market, a number of writing skills,s and a professional design of your book for yourself. Although the content took us about two years to complete rapidly fitting it around everything that I do – I ran across that was the easy bit!

Obtaining testimonials

When selling anything at all, what other people say is much more convincing than anything you state yourself, so I knew the book needed testimonials to become printed inside and on the rear cover. I sent PDF FILE copies to volunteers, however, found less than half of them really contributed their comments (hopefully due to lack of time not really because they didn’t have everything nice to say! ). Naturally, it’s hard to ‘chase’ men and women when they’re not being paid out, so it caused another hold-up in the process. Eventually, I obtained some lovely reviews along with was ready to go to the pic at last.

The next stage must have been a huge learning process, which has a number of key decision details along the way.

Traditional publishing or even self-publishing

First, you need to choose whether to find a publisher/agent or self-publish.

If you want to find a conventional publisher/agent who will look after everything for you (and take a percentage), your best bet is the latest backup of The Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook (available in all fine bookshops) and there are lots of other solutions online.

If you need help with your articles, there are a number of book coaches/midwives, independent book publishers, and short-run printers/publishers for you to choose, from for a cost (email me for a report on recommendations).

Despite warnings all around the web about their deteriorating customer service, I selected to self-publish through Lulu. com. I also found they have got an address for someone there who has been tremendously helpful (although there were always delayed trading messages between the UK as well as US time zones).

If you do exactly like me, you then need to choose whether to self-publish or even let Lulu be your author. Being a bit of a control fanatic, I decided to become a publisher along with an author.

Buying ISBN numbers (or not)

To achieve that, you have to buy a block associated with ISBN prefixes from Nielsen BookData (the minimum quantity is actually 10 which currently prices 111. 86GBP inc. VAT). You have to download, print as well as fill in a 4-page application form, but it’s not difficult (except you have to work out the meaning involving unfamiliar words like ‘title verso page’ – it does not take inside page that back onto the title page along with includes the publisher brand, copyright, and ISBN details).

Search “Nielsen ISBN” intended for everything you need to know.

Be warned, it will require a while for your ISBNs to be issued, so you can’t run this part of the process. Likewise note that, as a publisher, you will be also obliged to send a duplicate of the printed book to help Nielsen and the British Selection Legal Deposit Office within one month (they send you often the instructions along with the ISBN information). If/when you make changes, you should publish another edition of your respective book with a new ISBN, thus make sure everything is perfect prior to deciding to approve the final proof.

Leading tip: If you are also creating an eBook version, it requires its own ISBN. When environment your pricing, be aware that published books don’t attract VALUE-ADDED TAX, but eBooks do.

Should you not want to go through all this, just let Lulu be your publisher, and get your current ISBN free.

Designing the particular cover

Next decision: Have you been doing your own cover design and style or using Lulu’s protect design wizard? Happily, I use access to a talented web designer who worked with me on my lovely book cover. Lulu automatically produces the bar code for your ISBN, which you in that case download to include on the rear – it has to go in the underside right-hand corner along with a ‘quiet zone around the item. Between us, we intended the cover of my very own book (using copyright-free photographs of course), and loaded the print-quality artwork to help Lulu.

To do a one-piece (wraparound) cover yourself, you need to acquire Lulu’s front and rear ‘cover image templates’ for one book size, and terme conseillé them on the left and suitable sides of your design. Adapt your page size and also margins to match. Use Lulu’s ‘Spine Width Calculator’ application and add that measurement at the center.

More information is in Lulu’s “Book Covers FAQ”.

Designing the lining pages

Compared with that, working with the inside pages was not too difficult – they were already developed and saved in LIBRO ELECTRONICO format (single pages, certainly not spreads). I just had to ensure the title page and subject verso page was incorporated at the front (which changed my page numbers) and add the file. If you don’t have use of design skills, you can add Word files instead, regarding Lulu to convert into LIBRO ELECTRONICO. Then you have to order any ‘proof’ of the book in addition to ‘approving’ it when it is last but not least perfect (I did that several times, and sold often the proof copies at a discount).

Top tip: Authors fork out a bit less when ordering their own personal books, and Lulu features monthly special offers that may be valuable waiting for.

Getting onto The amazon online marketplace

My next decision seemed to be easy – I wanted often the book on Amazon so I paid Lulu about 50GBP for Global Reach Circulation. (If you choose Lulu as the publisher, you get free Extensive Reach Distribution instead. )

Here, I hit a new snag. I’d originally intended my book at A5 size, with lovely light paper, but it turns out it is possible to only have a few sizes regarding distribution, and A5 is just not one of them. I had to change the particular artwork to fit the US buy and sell size – I just included bigger margins and re-uploaded it. Trouble is, I didn’t want to have that size on white paper, only ointment.

I found that Lulu’s justification of sizes is not extremely consistent. In some places they involve the name of the size, in other individuals, they quote inches, as in others, centimeters.

For further facts, search Lulu Help to get ‘Which books are eligible to get distribution’ and ‘What pieces of paper will my book include for the cover and indoor? ‘ The information you need is definitely scattered throughout their on-the-net Help, so please email me to get my handy summary connected with sizes and paper shades that are eligible for Lulu’s International Reach distribution.

Once each of the size, paper, and supply is sorted out, it will take 6-8 weeks for your publication to appear on Amazon. I came across that almost unbelievable in this particular Internet age! And then, I came across it also takes a while for ‘Look inside’ to be activated, even if you’ve uploaded another LIBRO ELECTRONICO of your whole book to be able to Amazon. But eventually, my very own book was online and often the sales suddenly started coming in.

Top tip: Some other sellers may offer your e-book as ‘used’ or ‘as new’ at a discount. If it isn’t going to cut your margin a lot, you could set yourself up as a price-cut seller too, to completely overcome those sales.

Marketing your personal book

As a self-publisher, you want to do your own marketing. I supposed everyone who bought the actual book to review it on the internet (happily, they have all cherished it so far). I did so online marketing at no cost, using online communities such as Twitter, LinkedIn as well as Facebook. For example, I went a Twitter ‘retweet’ competitors that promoted it in order to new followers. I also do local PR and introduced it in my newsletter. And lastly, I keep a small share of books to sell at events I attend (such as training courses and local marketing meetings). People love the bright cover, and sometimes even ask me to indicate my book, just like a true bestselling author!

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