I’m a freelance writer who’s also been writing, self-publishing and selling ebooks online since 2004. To date, I’ve written over 50, with plans to write many more. I consistently earn four figures per month and in 2010, for the first time ever, over half of my income came from ebook sales.
As an aside, this was a conscious choice (ie, to balance my income more between different streams). I’m relaying this information to underscore that the tips I share here come from years of first-hand experience.
I receive tons of inquiries from wannabe self-publishers about how to successfully sell ebooks online. While there is no one magic "secret" that will catapult sales, there are some common denominators that successful self-publishers seem to agree on.
Without further do, following is how I make "a lot of money" selling ebooks online.
1. Sell Ebooks from Your Own Website: I sell my ebooks on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Lulu and a few other places. But, the vast majority of my sales come from my own website. And, I’m able to charge more from my website than on large outlets like Amazon. So, I earn more per sale, without having to give anyone a cut.
Hence, it’s critical to have your own website if you decide to write and sell ebooks online. While some well-known self-publishers like JA Konrath sell the majority of their ebooks via sites like Amazon, they still have their own ebook stores on their own sites.
This is just smart business.
2. Sell Ebooks via Various Outlets: Piggybacking on the last point, sell your ebook via as many outlets as you can, eg, Amazon, CreateSpace, etc. While this may seem to fly in the face of the advice I dispensed just above, it really doesn’t. Why? Because of exposure.
When I posted all of my ebooks on Amazon in 2011, I saw an increase in sales from my own website. Amazon and sites like it reach a large, worldwide audience, so it pays to have your titles listed there. And, ANY ebook sale from every outlet is great because once an ebook is written, it’s no extra work (outside of initially uploading it).
3. Write What You Know: The stumbling block many aspiring self-publishers have is starting – and finishing – a title. If you write what you know, it makes the process infinitely easier. And in my experience, once you get that first ebook out of you and get even one sale, it spurs you on to write others.
How Much Do Self-Published Ebook Authors Earn?
FYI, the 2012 Taleist Self-Publishing Survey revealed that half of self-published authors earn less than $500 per year. So while "a lot of money" is subjective, my earnings are considered "a lot" by many. Again, I consistenly earn four figures and this creeps up every month -- and will go on for years because once an ebook is written, you can essentially sell it forever.
Self-publishing is not for the faint of heart and it's definitely not for those who are lazy. But, I'm here to tell ya, you can do very well for yourself writing and selling your own ebooks online -- if you put in the work.
Get 6 more detailed tips that can help you successfully sell ebooks online.
About the Author: Yuwanda Black has been writing and selling ebooks online since 2004. To date, she’s self-published over 50. Get everything you need to learn how to write and successfully sell ebooks online, including ebook marketing strategies, how to create professional ebook covers, how to set up an ebook affiliate program – and more!
Learn more Yuwanda via her Google+ Profile.
Keywords relevant to this article: Selling ebooks, selling ebooks online, how to write an ebook, sell ebooks, ebook writer, self publishing, ebook marketing