This is one of the interesting questions asked by authors who are just getting started because they want to know if they can make money off of the book they are writing. Learn more about self-publishing on Kindle and whether it's profitable or not.
The Mistakes I Made
Today's question has three answers and the third answer is a secret you're going to want to stick around for. Because I'm going to tell you how your paperback books will make your Kindle books even more profitable.
So let's get into it. The question that was sent into me was, is self publishing on Kindle profitable? Now, this is an excellent question.
Many people, when they first start getting publishing on Kindle or they've written a book, you want to know are you going to be able to make money off this book? Or is this a complete waste of your time?
Because obviously, if it is profitable to just put your books on Kindle, then maybe you should go about doing that. Because one of the reasons we may write a book is to make a profit off of those very books.
Another thing is if we're thinking maybe if our books were paperback, then the Kindle books would be so cheap that they might cut into our profit. And that leads to a secondary question of maybe it's better just to do the paperback or audio or whatever other format but not the Kindle.
Since it would be a cheaper version of our book at which maybe we would lose money if we go that route. So there's an awful lot of questions that surround this specific question.
I'm going to answer those questions and more today. But before we get into that, check out my free Self-Publishing Checklist. It will help you make sure you're not forgetting any key steps to making a profit off of Kindle or other locations.
So, is self publishing on Kindle profitable? Well, when I first started publishing, I was blown away by just how easy the process was to get the book out there. Now, I made a lot of mistakes.
I assumed there was going to be a lot more difficult when getting my book on to Kindle. Then, there was but that didn't make it profitable. In fact, I spent quite a bit more money than I needed to spend because again, I made plenty of mistakes.
I paid too much for the cover. I paid too much for editing. I paid for almost every single step and I paid too much for an email autoresponder.
I misunderstood the nature of lead magnets in your books. There's a whole series of mistakes that I made when I was coming up to it. And when I finally did get my book on to Kindle, I was seeing a few sales here and there, now and then.
Check out this related article: What To Do To Self Publish Your Book Online?
But nothing to really no profitability that would make it worth my time. It reached the point where I wondered if maybe this wasn't even worth it at all. And that I should just give up on the entire process.
That was something I actually did consider. Maybe I need to do something else. That was until I found some key strategies and the reasons why my Kindle sales were not as profitable as they should have been.
It Depends Upon Your Book
So, is self publishing on Kindle profitable? Well, the answer is yes. Though, it depends upon whether your books are optimized and that was my main mistake.
Did you choose a book that was on a niche where there is an underserved hungry audience? Where there's lots of sales going on but few books that are in that market. And it's not that difficult.
So if you take whatever book you're writing on, you should find out using a program like Kindle Spy. It will help you figure out if the books that you're looking for actually will deliver sales that you're hoping to get.
Because if there are too many books in that market, it doesn't matter if the books are selling a lot of copies. You won't be found among the noise of all of the other books.
But at the same time, if nobody is buying these books at all, then you can come out with amazing books. Well written on subjects nobody cares about and you will find you will not make money.
So now they're not profitable. And then even when you do come out with the book, well, how good is your cover? Did you do a good job editing?
Is the description good? Are the keywords you're choosing, good? What about the formatting of your book, does it come off?
Check out this related article: Should You Self Publish To Kindle?
Does it pop when people open it up and do the preview of the book? Does it look good? So these are a number of the questions that many people want to know the answer to when they're first getting started.
If you make the mistakes in these areas, you're going to find that the number of sales you're going to make is going to be much less.
The other question would be, are you even doing marketing and running ads? Like content marketing on it where you can set up blogs and you can do Youtube channels and things talking about your book.
Getting a buzz on it on podcasts. I have more success with podcasts than anything else. So there are several key issues here in terms of driving that traffic in towards your book.
And also getting people to buy your book because the book itself is optimized. That's why with number two it drives traffic to your paper book.
And so this is a big one here which is a lot of people don't completely realize the majority or at least 50% of all the money that I make off of my books is off of the paperback versions.
And then about the same or maybe slightly less money is made off of the audiobooks. So, the audiobooks and Kindle make about the same or slightly less on the audiobooks.
Value Your Audiences
My paper books usually make slightly more than my Kindle books make on a sale. Recently, I've been testing out with Ingram Spark and finding makes even more money.
So you might be thinking why not just go as I mentioned earlier not skip the Kindle and just go for the other? The answer is because you have different audiences who like to read the different types of books that are available.
And today's secret answer of the day is that your Kindle book shows them a lot cheaper. So if you have your main book for let's say $30 and your Kindle book is selling for $3, you've got this huge mark off that shows the Kindle book is so cheap.
For some people, seeing that low price drives them to buy. Some readers only like to read on the Kindle and I happen to be one of those people. I listen to audiobooks and I read on Kindle and so I won't buy your paper book.
But the fact is there are a lot enough people who do like to buy paper books that you have to get them on into paper. If you want to make even more sales as I've been discovering lately, I can almost do better with Ingram Spark.
So, doing both Kindle Print/KDP Print and then also the Ingram Spark at the same time. And then for your hardback books, you can also do Lulu. This combination of multiple channels that are pumping it out to tons of locations will result in a lot of sales.
Not just sales for your paper books but also the Kindle sales will pump and drive traffic to your paper books. At the same time, the Kindle readers will see how much of a mark off there is and that motivates them to buy your Kindle books, resulting in even a greater profit.
Check out this related article: Lulu Self Publishing Prices?
This combination is the key to winning at the Kindle game. Most people do not know this. This is why this is a secret. Most people are making a thousand dollars a year off of Amazon, the authors who are doing that.
They're only making a thousand because their books are not optimized. They are not in different formats that their readers like to read. They're not on different platforms and these mistakes are huge when it comes to ensuring that your Kindle books are making the maximum profit they can.
So, is self publishing on Kindle profitable? What have you found? Go and let me know below in the comments, I respond to all comments and check out my other blogs and videos for answers to your self-publishing questions.