5 Way Authors Sabotage Their Internet Sales

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Despite all the work we put into marketing our books, little things count the most. Here are 5 ways I’ve seen many author sabotage their best efforts for online sales.

[1] They don’t take advantage of Amazon‘s programs. Amazon wants to make money off of you so they give you a lot of ideas to improve your sales. Tags, listmania, “So You” Guides, Author Connect Blogs, and much more all were developed to help you sell more books. And don’t forget to check back at least every few months to see what new things they’ve developes.

04 st whycanti item2c 5 Way Authors Sabotage Their Internet Sales[2] Poor cover art. Visuals count! I think every author should invest the $97 into Cover Action Pro. This software (which works with Photoshop) will create 3-d images of all your books (softcover, hardcover) CDs, DVDs in boxes, magazines and more. My sales have gone up considerably since using this software and it’s the only one I can find that makes the images in 300 dpi resolution, meaning you can use it in printed documents and (See an example to the right – this took about 30 seconds to make. I puchased Photoshop 7 off of Ebay for about $15 since I didn’t have it and it was required to run the software.)

[3] No “buy now” button. Make it EASY for people to find a button to actually purchase the book. Some of the most beautiful web sites lead you through three pages of more and more information about the book before you can finally locate a place to actually buy the book.

[4] No “sign up” box with a special offer. Even if you don’t have a newsletter authors should be collecting the emails and first names (and city/state is helpful too) of people who visit their web site so that you can send them information about your next book, signings you may be doing, publicity, etc. And don’t say, “To receive more information sign up here…” You need to offer them some little nugget for free. This could be a Top 10 list, a “special report” about 5 things not to do, a checklist, an essay, whatever you think would interest your readers.

[5] No links. Though you may not want to clog up your site with information other than your book, what list of links and resources would be helpful for your reader? Author web sites are not typically the kind of sites people bookmark. So make sure you have some kind of content that has to do with your book topic that is so worthwhile visitors won’t want to lose track of where it is at.


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Lisa and Joel Copen have a variety of experience in founding a nonprofit that receieves over 80,000 visitors per month, music and sound editing, web design, and book marketing and publishing. They look forward to your ideas to make the series of ebooks on book promotion a practical tool to help you sell more books!

 5 Way Authors Sabotage Their Internet Sales

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