10 Tips for the safest and most profitable ways to self-publish

Many writers fail to realise that it is absolutely FREE to self-publish books and ebooks on major websites like Amazon. They never even heard about options like Print-On-Demand that make life so much easier. If you're an author using On-Demand, you just sit back, relax and watch your book sales roll in. You don’t have to do anything! While you’re relaxing, factories in various countries are automatically assigned to print your books. These are then shipped to buyers, bookstores and libraries, everywhere, – on your behalf. The lion's share of the royalties can accrue directly to you. Only the printer's and retailer's (e.g. Amazon) share are deducted, you’re paid directly into your bank account. So now you don’t need to print thousands of copies of your book, nor sign contracts with traditional publishers that give away your book rights. Happy days! Self-publishing and On-Demand generate a higher percentage of royalties than traditional publishing. By comparison, eBook self-publishing earns around 50% more royalties, and On-demand earns around 32% more royalties, than traditional publishing.

10 Tips to help aspiring authors safely self-publish, promote, make & save more money:

1) Copyright

By self-publishing your book via safe websites, you the author, retain copyright (if your work is original), and no other action is required. But be extremely careful to publish only on safe websites!

2) Safe websites

Self-publishing is fast, but formatting, converting and uploading files is tricky and time-consuming. It is advisable to seek expert assistance as to the layout, so that all your book formats appear neat and presentable to readers. Perpetuity Publications (PP) are Royalty-Free Self-publishers who upload your books to safe websites. PP provide most of the services offered by traditional publishers/publicists. But with PP, you are not required to sign a book deal contract or give them any royalties. However, other traditional publishers do and so you give away your book rights/royalties to them. So take care!

3) ISBN barcode protection

It is important to use an ISBN barcode to safe-guard your book. You’ll need a different ISBN for each ebook, paperback or even hardcover print versions.

4) Kindle ebooks

If you want to publish a Kindle ebook, it is better to submit your book directly to Amazon Kindle. They pay you a 70% royalty. You might be paid less if you go through third-party ebook distributors, but these distributors may give you the option to “Distribute” or “opt out” for Amazon Kindle.

5) Pricing your ebook

It is better if your ebook price ends with __.99 (i.e. $2.99, $9.99 etc.) so that most retailers will accept it. For Amazon Kindle, it is best to choose a price from $2.99-9.99. Kindle pay 70% commission on ebooks within that price range. They pay 35% on ebooks priced more than $9.99 or less than $2.99.

6) Change the price or cover of your book

If you experience low sales, then maybe consider changing the book’s cover or lowering the price. This might make a huge difference!

7) Reviews – the more you get the better

Some retailers use algorithms to push hot books with many reviews/star-ratings. Amazon even use a ‘verified purchase review’. You can promote your book for free online via book communities for readers and writers. This allows you to gather thousands of followers and fans who read and write reviews. It is also not advisable to pay people to write your book reviews or give you top star-ratings.

8) DRM and Kindle Select

When publishing with Kindle, Amazon usually give you the option to opt out of DRM as well as choose to select or ignore Kindle Select. Be sure to weigh up the Pros & Cons before you decide on both. DRM is to stop unauthorized redistribution of your book and restrict the ways someone can copy the content. In addition, checking the box for Kindle Select gives Amazon exclusive rights to distribute your ebook. Therefore, you can’t sell your ebook on other retailer platforms, like Apple iBooks or Google Play Android.

9) Android books are open for business

Android stopped accepting ebooks for a while, but as of now they are accepting ebooks again for self-publishing. Readers may prefer to read your book on their android phone/tablet, rather than on their iPhone/iPad or even Kindle. The more options you provide, the better!

10) Plug your other books

Insert cover images and/or sample chapters of your other book(s) at the end of your book. For ebooks, you have the option to insert your links into your ebook at the start and/or end of your book. Links can include your social media pages, websites, author profiles and retailer links to buy your other book(s). This allows readers to click or send the links to their friends; write reviews and buy your book series or different language versions and even hard copy versions (libraries particularly like paperback/hardcover copies and even audiobooks).

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