So, you've published your eBook a few months ago on Kindle, and you've been waiting for those royalty checks to roll in, but alas - no sales to date. Meanwhile, you've been thinking about your book and came up with a number of ways in which you could've put forth a better effort.
Perhaps you've been wondering if self-publishing really is a farce and that all books fade into obscurity when it hits the Kindle store. Not so fast!
Is Self-Publishing Even a Viable Option?
Fortune.com recently published a report on what they coined The Kindle Effect, a revolution spearheaded by digital publishers (like us!), that handle the entire publishing process as a one-stop-shop. In 2016, we were part of the revolution that helped Kindle Direct Publishing release in excess of 4 million e-titles. Nearly half of those titles were self-published, and accounted for a quarter of Amazon's $2.3 BILLION from eBook revenues.
You'd better believe that self-published authors enjoy success. Just ask E.L. James. Her first Fifty Shades of Grey title sold 125 million copies by December 2016, and earned $166.1 million in movie revenues.
Self-publishing gives authors more creative control and significantly higher royalties rates than traditionally published books. The secret to self-publishing success lies in putting your best foot forward right from the start. A well-written, well-presented book will be well-received by your audience, who will recommend it to their circles of influence and before you know it, sales will skyrocket and you will see your name in lights at movie premieres.
Of course that doesn't happen for everyone, but if you don't do your utmost, you're not in the race at all.
Here are some simple steps to freshen an existing eBook on Amazon.
Simple Ideas to Freshen-Up an Already Published Kindle eBook
Step 1: It’s a Cover-Up!
The one drawback of creative control, is that some authors insist on creating their own cover designs. Unfortunately, readers DO judge books by their covers, and if your cover is less than professional, it will become a hard-sell. Avoid this commonly-made mistake – Leave cover design to a professional.
Step 2: Sell the Sizzle - Not the Steak
Your marketing blurb is the next thing someone looks at, after your title and before they buy. It should contain just enough information to tantalize a reader, and not so much that it gives the plot away. Remember - Authors (or their spouses, aunts, or colleagues) should not write their own blurbs.
Step 3: Making the Most of Your Words
We advise all our writers to invest in editing. If you read some of the nasty reviews on Amazon, you will understand why. But apart from bad reviews, a book full of grammatical errors can be hard to read. Readers may not even notice the mistakes, but if they struggle to follow the story because of issues with style or flow, they won't recommend it to others and they won't buy your next book.
We love family and friends as much as the next guy, but when it comes to giving constructive criticism, they are completely unreliable. They’d rather see you fail than hurt your feelings. Professional editors may not tiptoe around your feelings, but they are motivated to ensure that your book is as close to perfect as possible, thus enhancing your likelihood of success significantly.
How to Update Your Kindle eBook – The technical bit.
Updating your Kindle eBook is easy as pie. Simply log into your Kindle Direct Publishing Dashboard, and choose the title you want to edit. Now click on Actions and Edit Book Details.
From here, you can upload your updated title, Save and Publish. Updating your file will replace the old file.
You will have the option to keep your old ISBN or use a new one. Depending on the level of updating, you may wish to retire the old ISBN and release the new version with a brand new title and new ISBN.
You will have to complete the revision process once again. It will take around 48 hours for your title to be updated across all the sales channels.
What about people who have already bought your eBook? Well, there's a handy option that allows you to notify them of the new version, which they can download for free, buying you some goodwill with your readers.
Let's discuss: Do you wish you had done a better job with your first Kindle Digital Publishing platform title? If you had the opportunity to make changes, what would you do?