Tips for the Self-Published Author: Selling Ebooks


You’ve finished your manuscript and have made the decision to self-publish, rather than wrangling with publishers in the hopes of securing a traditional publishing deal. Now what?

Distribution and Practicalities: Preparing to Sell Ebooks

The first thing you must do after polishing and editing your manuscript, as a self-published author, is determine the best and most practical methods of distributing your work. While selling ebooks may not provide you with a physical copy of your novel to place on a bookshelf, you’ll still need to find a reliable method of exchanging your ebooks for your customers’ money when a sale is made.

Some authors will choose to exclusively release through a proprietary system like Amazon’s Kindle Store, but these authors are choosing to voluntarily restrict their audience reach in exchange for minimally subsidized marketing. These authors will not be able to sell ebooks to readers who own a differently branded device, which can lead to lower sales and less revenue in the long run. For most authors, the best solution is to devise a system which caters to potential readers who own a variety of devices, ensuring compatibility and accessibility across the board. Choosing a non-exclusive contract does not bar you from selling ebooks through more than one outlet, so you’re able to tap several different markets and increase sales. The best way to achieve this goal is by working with an ecommerce platform like, which allows you to start selling ebooks in a variety of file formats with greater freedom while also reaping the benefits of automated content delivery, secure payment processing and access to marketing tools.

Offering High Quality and Selling Ebooks More Successfully

The relative ease of self-publishing does remove some very large obstacles for dedicated authors, but can also create a low barrier to entry which allows low-quality content to proliferate the market. To combat the perception of low quality, it’s important to dedicate ample time to editing and polishing. Because there are no deadlines for self-publishing, you’re able to take your time and perfect your product before release.

Research the native file formats of the most popular ereader devices to expand your customer base. While most devices are marginally capable of loading and reading PDF files, for example, this is not the native format for most and, as such, may not provide an optimal experience for your customers. Your reputation, and your ability to sell future releases, will depend upon your ability to capture the interest of your new readers and turn them into fans, and making your product easy for them to use is part of a great customer service plan.

With carefully polished content, thoughtful file formatting and attention to the advice of self-publishing insiders, you can start making money and building a fan base when you choose to sell ebooks online.


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