How Much Money Can One ebook Make?

Can ebook Make This Much Money in 1 Year?

In this article we are going to look at how much you can earn by publishing a single self help book on Amazon KDP. Some of the data that we are going to share in this article is taken from Chris Guthrie`s article on Upfuel.

How much can 1 book earn in a year?

The one year sales data for Chris Guthrie`s self help book on how to sell on Kindle, shows that he earned almost $4534 in a single year, this means he averaged at around $377 per month. Now this isn’t stellar but it shows how new authors need to build up their sales over time. When you read a lot about successful authors who are raking in six digit incomes, you quickly forget about the hardwork and the persistence that is required to become a successful self published author.

Biggest Traffic Sources?

Chris also shares that for every book that he has published, the biggest traffic contribution has been made by buyers and readers from the U.S, U.K and Canada in that order. Since most of the Amazon users are also divided in the same manner, it is likely that all authors get similar traffic, which means that even though Amazon KDP allows you to reach a global audience but the bulk of your readers are likely to come from these three territories.

Updates and Editions

Now self help and DIY books are different from fiction books that we have previously covered. Once you publish a fictional story, you are done and it does not require any changes but with self help and DIY books, you may need to update your book or release new editions whenever you have some new information.

Many DIY and self help authors regularly publish updated versions of their book, not only because they have something new to add to their books but also because this is an easy way to keep the book relevant and fresh or in other words this is a good way to expand the lifecycle of your book.

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Pricing Strategy

We have already discussed that Amazon offers two pricing tiers for ebooks.

  • Books priced between $0.99 to $2.98 get 35% royalty.
  • Books priced $2.99 and above get 70% royalty.

We can try to break this down.

  • If your book is priced at $0.99 then you get $0.297 in royalty.
  • If your book is priced at $2.98 then you get $0.894 in royalty.
  • If your book is priced at $2.99 then you get $2.09 in royalty.

So if you price your book at $0.99 then you will have to sell it seven times to earn the same level of royalty that you would earn by selling a single book priced at $2.99. So why price your book at a lower price level?

We have covered the pricing strategy in detail but let’s go over it again. Many authors get confused whether they should price their book in the 35% royalty tier or in the 70% royalty tier. The first thing that you need to consider is the length and quality of your book. Your book must justify the value for the money that the readers will be paying. If you cannot justify your book to be priced at or above $2.99 then it will be better to stay in the lower tier.

If you can justify to price your book in the 70% tier then by all means go for it. But there is a catch here. Sometimes it is better to price the book at $0.99 even if you can justify pricing it in the higher tier.

For instance if you are going to publish a new book, then it makes sense to offer an introductory discount. Selling your new book at a discounted price attracts a lot of new readers and it is a good way not to get some traction but also some cracking early reviews to help your book. What you should ideally do with a low price discount is add people to your mailing list. Think of this as harvesting potential readers for the future.

You offer them a very low priced book and in return you add them to your mailing list, to pitch a higher priced book later once they grow accustomed to your writing. Amazon allows you to automatically increase the price once the introductory period is over by using a countdown timer. This feature has helped authors plan their strategy beforehand and execute it with perfection.

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Bonus Material and Free Offers

Should you offer some of your content for free? KDP selling experts are divided over this. One camp believes that when you sell your content for free, you end up devaluing it. Whereas the second camp believes that free content can create readers who will buy your premium content.

Some self published authors create small ebooks, with say 5000 words and mail it for free to the subscribers on their site. This creates anticipation for the upcoming book and leaves a breadcrumb trail for the readers to buy the new book. Everyone loves bonus content but you have to be careful that you do not use it too much, as it may end up devaluing your work.

If you wish to offer free books from time to time, then the way to do it is through your own website.

  • Create a website and scale it up with content.
  • Create a facebook page and generate your following.
  • Create an email list and send out an email about your new book with some free content that is not a part of the new book but linked to it. (KDP usually allows under 10% of the content to be shared but it is better to be on the safe side and share unique but linked content through your mailing list).
  • Use promotional pricing for the first couple of days

Hopefully the insights shared in this article will allow you to price your books strategically so that you can maximise your earnings.

Main Image Source: Pixabay

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Dave Peterson

Dave Peterson Passion for adventure and sharing his life long journey with as many others as possible. "What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us." HENRY S. HASKINS

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