When you’ve got information you’d like to share – and profit from – an e-book is simple way to do it. This article will teach you how to write an ebook that people will buy.
Before we dig into the steps for how to write an ebook, here are a few of the advantages you’ll enjoy as an ebook author:
- You can easily self publish your own work. No waiting for a publisher’s approval.
- You can publish your work whenever you’re ready. It’s easy to get an ebook online.
- Write it once, sell it forever. This is referred to as passive or residual income.
- You get to decide how much to charge for your work.
- You get to keep all the profits.
- Because your ebook is online, sales will come in 24/7.
- You don’t need to make room in your garage for the books. A single file is stored online.
- No schlepping to the post office! Delivery to your customers is instant and automatic.
- You can publish an ebook for next to nothing.
- You can create a part-time or full-time income – publish one ebook or create an empire!
As you can see, there are some real pluses to creating an ebook and sharing it with the world. Now let’s look at the steps for how to write an ebook – one that people will buy from you!
The first thing you need to do to before you can start writing is decide on a topic. Even if you’ve got a general topic in mind, you might need to make it more specific.
For example, if you’re thinking of writing an ebook about weight loss, that is a very large topic that encompasses several different markets.
If you’ve ever looked at the weight loss section in a bookstore, you know what I mean. There’s weight loss for diabetics, weight loss after 40, weight loss using specific diets, and so on.
By making your topic more specific you’re able to reach a sub-group, or niche, within the larger market. This tells people that the information in the ebook is just for them – increasing your chances for a sale.
Ask yourself if your topic is a very broad, general one. If it is, look for possible sub-markets and niche it down.
You can always create another ebook for another niche in the same, broad market if you later decide you want to branch out.
If you don’t have a topic in mind, you can find some very profitable ideas in my post, “Digital Information Product Ideas That Sell.”
Knowing how to write an ebook won’t matter if your chosen topic doesn’t interest anyone.
You’ll need to do a little research to make sure someone will want your ebook when it’s done. This is something you can easily do online.
Type your topic idea into Google and see what comes up. Are there a lot of blogs and websites on your topic? If so, you’ve probably got a winner. If not, you’ll want to come up with a new idea for a topic.
Assuming your topic brings up a lot of links in Google, you’ll want to check out those links. Go to the websites and blogs and see what’s there.
Do the websites look professional? Are they selling products? Do they have a blog with comments? The more “action” you see around your topic the better.
You can also check Amazon to see if there are books about your topic there. If so, are they selling? Do they have a lot of comments?
And finally, forums are another place you can check. If there are forums created around your topic and people are discussing it, that means people have an interest in it.
After doing your research you may feel like there’s so much written about your topic that you should just shelve your ebook idea.
I advise you not to do that.
Remember the weight loss example I mentioned above? There are hundreds, if not thousands, of weight loss and diet books on the market. And as long as they are all targeted to a specific niche, they sell.
Think about the last time you were really interested in learning about something. Did you only read one article or book about it? Did you only watch one video? Of course not!
About four years ago I was really into Juicing. I bought a juicer and a great book with about 500 different juices I could make. But you know what? It wasn’t enough! I wanted more.
Now I’m not into juicing so much. I’ve moved on to smoothies. I’ve got a great smoothie recipe I love and I have it for breakfast most mornings. But, recently I decided I wanted to try some new recipes.
So I’m looking at smoothie books, and I’ll probably buy more than one because one book limits me. And well, there are just so many interesting smoothie recipes. How could I possibly only buy one book?
So, don’t worry if there are already ebooks on the market about your topic. People will buy yours too. Yours is going to be different simply because YOU wrote it.
You’ve got your topic and you’ve made sure there’s a market for it. Now it’s time to learn how to write an ebook!
You can use any word processor you’re comfortable with. I, personally, use Microsoft Word.
Gather your notes and organize all of your information into a logical sequence from beginning to end. Then, divide it into chapters that make sense.
I advise you to keep the length of your ebook short – 20 pages or less. Fill it with only the most essential information. This makes your ebook a “must have” and gives readers a quick win.
If you’ve got too much information for 20 pages, create two ebooks or more. This easily expands your product line and gives your readers more to buy from you!
Another advantage of a shorter ebook is that it won’t take you long to write it. You can probably get it done over a weekend.
For the writing, block out some time on your calendar when you can minimize interruptions. Then, stick to the schedule you created and get the writing done!
Don’t worry about perfection. Done is always better than perfect!
Once the writing is done proofread it for spelling and punctuation errors, and make sure it reads the way you want it to.
Then, have someone else look it over. Often another person will catch mistakes that you missed.
Now it’s time to think about design. A great free tool for making your ebook look professional is Canva. It’s free and easy for non-techies and non-designers to use.
In Canva you can choose a free template, change the text, colors and photos, and voila! You’ve got a beautiful design for your ebook!
And, when you create your ebook in Canva, you can automatically download it from there as a PDF. This will save you a step.
If you have the budget, you can hire a designer for your ebook. A designer will run you anywhere from under $100 to over $500, and will provide your ebook to you in a PDF file.
If you decide to use a designer, be sure to get references.
One thing you’ll want to keep in mind with your ebook’s design is whether you’re going to create a brand down the line.
If you only plan to ever write one ebook, you won’t need to be concerned with this so much. But, if you’re going to write many ebooks, your brand will tie them together like they’re part of a family.
Colors are important to your individual ebooks as well as to your business and your brand as a whole.
You’ll also want to consider font styles inside your ebook and on the cover. Your font styles are part of your brand and help keep a consistent look and feel to all of your ebooks.
When you’ve got your ebook in a PDF file it’s time to publish it. This is done by uploading it to a sales platform.
A sales platform is a piece of software that will act as the middle man between you and your buyers.
One sales platform I’ve used that is inexpensive and ebook friendly is E-junkie.
I highly recommend E-junkie for selling ebooks. They’re easy to use and they offer some nice protection features for your work – such as PDF stamping and expiring download links.
E-junkie will also store your ebook for you and automatically deliver it to your customer. And their pricing starts at just $5 a month.
Of course, E-Junkie isn’t the only sales platform on the block. DPD (Digital Product Delivery) is another one that I’ve personally used and loved. Their starting plan will run you $10 a month.
There are many different platforms you can use to store and deliver your ebook, so you’ll want to look at several before you decide.
Consider your budget. Some platforms, like E-junkie and DPD, will charge you a flat monthly rate. This is great if you plan to sell a lot of ebooks.
Others will take a percentage of your sales. This is great if you’re worried about having months where you don’t make sales.
You’ll also want to consider your needs down the road. Will you only write ebooks or will you offer other products and services as well?
In the end remember that all sales platforms are simply a means to an end – getting your ebook (and other future products) sold!
According to Inc.com in its article, “The Top 5 Reasons Small Businesses Fail”, the #1 reason online businesses fail is lack of online marketing.
Without marketing, nothing else you do in your business matters. It’s that important.
So, how do you market your ebook? After all, this blog post isn’t just about how to write an ebook. It’s also about getting people to buy, and you can’t do that without marketing.
The word “marketing” means giving a shout out about your product to the people who need to hear about it.
The more places you talk about your ebook online, the more chances the people who need it have to hear about it.
Facebook, Pinterest, blogs and forums are all places you can talk about your ebook. But, make sure you pay attention to forum rules when posting, as some don’t allow any type of promotions.
If you’re posting on blogs and in forums, it gives people the chance to get to know you before they buy. People buy from people they know, like and trust.
Now that you know how to write an ebook people will buy, it’s time to get started!
To your success,
PS: Have ideas for future posts? Questions? Something else? Leave me a comment below! I read and respond to all comments personally. Thanks!
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