Friday, September 20, 2013

4 Tips to Increase eBook Sales on Amazon's Kindle

Today we welcome Luke Glasscock as a guest blogger! He's chatting about something I know many of us who frequent this blog are interested in! Thanks for joining us, Luke! -- Mary Ann

As a self-published author, I’ve dabbled in the many promotions and opportunities that Amazon offers writers looking to increase their  ebook sales.  Many writers want to know what works and what doesn’t.  
I’ve tested nearly all of the tips and theories circulating the Web,  and here’s what I’ve found to produce results.

1. Cover Design – It’s sad, but we all do it.  No one listens to: 
“Don’t judge a book by its cover!” One of the most important steps in 
selling your book is having a good cover design.  This is especially 
important on Amazon, where buyers scroll through a page in a matter of
seconds.   I’ve known authors who have seen as much as a 60% increase 
in sales, simply from changing the cover design.
A great place to find graphic artists that can create a professional 
cover for a low price is on (you can often scroll through 
the artist’s previous work to see if they are the right fit for you).  
I would also add that you have your artist look through your book’s 
categories on Amazon to create something that stands out amongst your 

2. Sub-Category Placement – Many authors make the mistake of not 
placing their books into sub-categories.  Unless these authors have 
great publicists—or already have a known title that is at the top of 
the charts—it will be hard for many readers to find their book under a 
general category.  By choosing sub-categories, the author is filtering 
out a lot of the competition that is found in a general category.  It 
also makes it easier for the book to rise in rank on Amazon (as it 
does not have as far to travel to get to the top).  Kindle Direct 
Publishing allows up to two sub-categories, so choose wisely.

3. Key-Words – Again, this is something that is taken for granted by 
many authors.  It’s so simple, yet it can be extremely effective if 
the competition is not too great for the keyword.  The idea is to 
think of a string of words that your buyer might type when looking for 
a book like yours.  If your book is called Tales of the Comedic 
Housecat, you may want to use keywords like: funny cat stories, funny 
cats, cat humor.  Amazon KDP allows you to select up to seven keywords.

4. Book Purchases – Let’s call it Amazon’s Vicious Circle of Death.  
Your book’s ranking is dependent on the sales that it receives.  If 
you don’t sell books, your rank drops.  If your rank drops, you sell 
fewer books.  The great thing about this, though, is that it works in 
the same fashion when you sell a book: a book sale will increase your 
rank (temporarily).

Every time you sell a book, your rank will jump up in rank and then 
slowly begin to decrease soon after.  When your rank decreases, it 
will eventually settle at a position that is determined by your 
sub-category and competition (if your book is new, this may be the 
bottom).  The “settling point” will be a greater rank as Amazon’s 
profits from your book increase.

So how do you keep your rank up?  This is where promoting your book 
comes into play.  Scheduling online book interviews is a great way to 
create publicity for your book.   Facebook, Twitter, and your personal 
website are also great ways to drive traffic.  But I’ll share my 
strategy that I’ve found to be extremely effective.

I use gift certificates as a promotional tool (you can purchase/send 
them through your Amazon account).  I will often use this for social 
media giveaways, or just gifting my book to a random interested 
reader.  I also will sometimes provide a gift certificate for my book, 
in exchange for an honest review.  Here’s the thing with gift 
certificates: it counts as a sale the moment the individual uses it to 
download your book.  This allows you to strategically boost your sales 
rank, while building great author-to-reader relationships.

Increasing ebook sales through Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing is not 
something that needs to be complicated.  Implementing the first three 
tips will ensure that your book is in the proper place for you to make 
internal sales, while you help to promote external sales.  If you 
follow these four easy steps, you will see a definite increase to your 
Amazon ebook sales.  The best of luck to you!

Luke Glasscock is the author of Get Accepted Into Architecture School 
( and founder of My School of Architecture 
( informational website.  He has 
also successfully published other numerous books on the Amazon platform.


  1. Really you have very nice way of expressing thoughts. your article about ebook writing is suprb.

  2. Item number four alone could open the door to many more articles. I swear, one could devise a four-college degree program around how sales and the amazon logarithm work if it didn't change so often. Bottom line is that solid market and a game plan to get as many sales as possible at launch helps with book placement.

  3. Amazing tips you have shared for writing e books to increase sales. I never think deep about these tips. Thanks for sharing.