How to Make Money Selling Books

How to Make Money Selling Books

You started your journey trying to figure out how to make money selling books. So, you published a book, it sold ok for a while but now sales have started to dwindle. If that sounds familiar, you’re in luck, because in today’s video I’m going to try and answer the question “Why did my book stop selling” and show you how to revamp a book. So stick around, 

Let me start off by reassuring you that you’re not alone. Anyone who has been self publishing books on Amazon has probably had at least one book that started selling pretty well and then gradually sales died out.

I’ve run into this myself on a few of my books, so here are my self-publishing ideas on how to fix a book that’s not selling.

  1. Keyword Research – Keywords that worked 3 or 4 months ago, may no longer be hot keywords any more. Terms and industry lingo change as do peoples search patterns. So go into your metadata and write down your current keywords. Then, just as if you were launching a new book, test out each keyword and phrase and see how they’re tracking. Perhaps the keyword is too competitive now or maybe it’s less searched than it use to be. Can you find some new keywords that work better?

    As a note: I definitely wouldn’t change all of your keywords at once. Just like in science class, if you change too many variables, it’s nearly impossible to determine what change helped and hurt. Also, you want to give your keywords time to find their place in Amazon search, so I suggest only addressing keywords every 90 days or so.
  2. Check your categories – Amazon is always updating their categories to make things easier to find for their customers. Because of this, it’s extremely reasonable to find new categories that better fit your particular book. And don’t forget, Amazon allows you to put your book and ebook into up to 10 categories each. I covered that in a previous video, and I’ll include a link to it so you can check that out later.
  3. Check out your description – Remember back to keywords, well don’t forget to update your description with some of the new, more relevant keywords you found.
  4. Is it time for a new book cover – Just like with categories and keywords, sometimes fixing a book that won’t sell comes down to re-evaluating the book cover.
  5. It’s easy to fall in love with a book cover, it’s the visual representation of your book. Your pride and joy. Because of this, we as authors have a tendency to put blinders on. Even if your cover is stellar, that doesn’t mean it’s right for your book. Here are some questions to ask when it comes to your book cover.
  • Does your book cover fit in with the genre?
  • Does your cover standout on the page
  • Does your cover tell the reader what they’re going to get

I recently ran into this with my own book. Here’s my original cover for my book Please Don’t Beg. I was really proud of this cover, Did it fit in with the genre? YES. Did it standout on the page? YES. Did it tell the reader what they were going to get?….NO! You couldn’t tell by looking at this cover that it was about how to get book reviews unless you zoomed in and saw the subtitle.

So I had a new cover made. This one still fits in with the genre, still has unique elements that makes it standout, but also lets the reader know what they can expect within the book.

5. Write another book – another great way to breathe life into an old book is to write another book. By writing another book, whether it’s in the same series or genre or not is that it when you release your new book it will bring a spotlight back on you as an author. Readers who like your new book will likely check out your backlist, in turn, giving your older a book some more love. If you’re writing in the same series or genre, you can consider offering your older book at a discounted price in an attempt to drum up some additional buzz for your new release as well as bringing in more sales for your older book.

6. Consider running ads – I saved this one for last because I don’t suggest running ads to your book until you’re sure your keywords, categories and bookcover are spot on. No sense it spending money on ads until you know everything else is dialed in. Besides, the return on your ad spend becomes even better if you have a backlist that readers can jump into when they’re done with their new book.

If you’re pressed for time, PublisherRocket, formerly know as KDP Rocket can help you with keyword research, category research as well as compiling keywords for running Amazon ads. You can check it out at my link: