• Self-Publishing & Online Income

How to Sell eBooks on Amazon in 2023: Make $2193 a Month

  • Matt Hapgood
  • 11 min read
How to Sell eBooks on Amazon in 2023: Make $2193 a Month


In 2023 selling eBooks on Amazon is an opportunity not to be missed - Whether you’re already published, or looking to diversify your income. With a huge, global audience and a well-established platform, Amazon offers unprecedented access to consumers with their wallet open, and at the ready.

Yet, while the potential is massive, selling ebooks is not without its complexities.

In this blog post you'll learn how to sell an eBook on Amazon, from the essentials of using Kindle Direct Publishing to nuanced strategies for pricing and promotion. Whether you're new to digital publishing or looking to optimize existing listings, this comprehensive overview will provide actionable insights to enhance your eBook's commercial performance.

We'll cover the ins and outs of Amazon's algorithms to improve your Amazon SEO, effective use of metadata, and key tools and features like KDP Select and Amazon Author Central. Read on to better understand how to make Amazon's ecosystem work for you.

First off, what is an eBook?

Picture this: Your entire library compressed into a device that can fit into your pocket. That's the magic of an ebook—short for 'electronic book.'

These digital wonders can be opened and read on a multitude of platforms like your laptop, tablet, e-reader, or even your smartphone.

Goodbye paper cuts, hello convenience!

Meet Ranktracker

The All-in-One Platform for Effective SEO

Behind every successful business is a strong SEO campaign. But with countless optimization tools and techniques out there to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start. Well, fear no more, cause I've got just the thing to help. Presenting the Ranktracker all-in-one platform for effective SEO

We have finally opened registration to Ranktracker absolutely free!

Create a free account

Or Sign in using your credentials


Image courtesy of https://www.insider.com/

Image link https://i.insider.com/5e7905d10c2a62464144b765?width=1300&format=jpeg&auto=webp

Why sell books online?

Imagine your words flying off digital shelves and landing on screens all around the world. Selling books online isn't just smart; it's a game-changer. If you are interested in selling practically anything on the internet, Amazon is simply one of the best places to start selling online.

You sidestep the traditional gatekeepers, reach readers in far-flung places, and slash those overheads to smithereens. All the while, your book is available 24/7, rain or shine.

What's not to love?

Is it difficult to sell eBooks?

Ok, I’ll be straight - selling eBooks isn't a walk in the park, but it's far from impossible.

The digital shelf is crowded, yes, but don't let that deter you. What you need is a cocktail of an eye-catching cover, a compelling storyline or useful content, and a splash of marketing mojo.

Meet Ranktracker

The All-in-One Platform for Effective SEO

Behind every successful business is a strong SEO campaign. But with countless optimization tools and techniques out there to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start. Well, fear no more, cause I've got just the thing to help. Presenting the Ranktracker all-in-one platform for effective SEO

We have finally opened registration to Ranktracker absolutely free!

Create a free account

Or Sign in using your credentials

Sprinkle in some positive reviews, and you've got yourself a recipe for success.

Can anyone sell stuff on Amazon?

Do you have a pulse and an internet connection? Great, you're already qualified to write and sell ebooks on Amazon!

Okay, there are a few more steps like setting up a seller account and following guidelines. But seriously, Amazon is the world's marketplace, open to nearly anyone and everyone with something to sell—be it books, gadgets, or grandma's secret sauce.

And with the rise of AI and writing-based software, you can knock an entire book in under a day.

How to get started selling on Amazon

Why Amazon is your eBook's best friend

With over 200 million Prime members, Amazon's reach is vast, and its publishing platform called Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) makes the process of publishing and selling as smooth as your morning coffee.

It's time to let go of traditional methods, start writing and go publish your ebook!

What is Amazon KDP?

Kindle Direct Publishing, or KDP as it's more commonly known. Think of it as your launchpad to Kindle stardom.

It's Amazon's self-publishing service that allows you to upload your books directly to the Kindle Store. Plus, you get to set your own prices and rake in up to 70% in royalties. Not too shabby if you ask me.

The basics: Setting up shop

bookshop front

© Pretty City London


Understanding Amazon KDP:

Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) is more than just a platform; it's your one-stop shop for everything eBook-related. It offers an easy-to-use interface, a choice between two royalty options (35% or 70%), and the liberty to update your content anytime.

KDP makes you the captain of your ship, granting you the ability to steer your eBook through various promotional tools like KDP Select and Amazon Ads.

Creating your Amazon seller account:

Imagine your Amazon Seller Account as your virtual storefront. Here, you get to showcase your product, your eBook - in the best possible light.

You'll need some basics to get started: an email address, bank account details, and tax information. After that, you're free to choose between individual or professional plans based on how you publish your book.

For more info on getting your account up and running check out this video here


Preparing your eBook

The importance of niche research: Finding your audience

Before you dive head-first into writing, pause and consider your audience.

Who are they? And, what are they searching for?

Platforms like KindleSpy or even Amazon's own search can offer insights. Knowing your audience helps you tailor your eBook's content, tone, and even pricing.

So, dig deep into niche research and make your eBook not just another drop in the ocean but the wave that stands out.

My Tip: A simple strategy is to use the autocomplete on the Amazon search bar - this can help you find many untapped niches.

Writing your eBook: Tips for creating stellar content

Writing an eBook isn't just about putting words on a screen; it's about crafting a narrative, solving a problem, or providing valuable insights. This guide on how to write awesome long-form content is a great start.

Whether you're a seasoned writer or it's your first attempt, focus on delivering quality. Use tools like Grammarly for proofreading, or even consider hiring a professional editor.

Your eBook's success largely depends on its content, so make every word count.

Formatting 101: Making your eBook Kindle-friendly

Imagine reading a poorly formatted eBook - jumbled words, weird spacing, and confusing navigation. Frustrating, right? Avoid being that eBook by adhering to Kindle's formatting guidelines.

Use software like Calibre or Scrivener to format your eBook so that it's compatible with Kindle devices. You can also use Amazon's own Kindle Create tool, which is free and user-friendly.

Book cover design: Your eBook's first impression

If you think people don't judge books by their covers, think again. If you don’t have any reviews, besides the price, the cover is THE most important factor in getting customers to buy your book.

A compelling, professionally designed cover can significantly boost your ebook sales. If design isn't your forte, consider hiring a freelance designer, and if you’re on a budget take a look at Fiverr.

Use platforms like Canva for designing a basic cover or go the extra mile with more specialized software like Adobe Photoshop.

Writing the text: My tips

Once you have the outline and niche dialled, and the cover sorted it’s time to actually write the damn thing.

For some writing comes naturally and for others not so.

  1. Start with a basic outline and then do some research around that topic.

  2. Next, bulk up your outline - try to stick to a writing routine that works for your lifestyle. If you have a job, maybe work early in the morning before work, or on weekends.

    If you have kids, try to grab an hour each day when they are sleeping or at school.

  3. Complete the first draft - it sounds easy, but keep going to get the first draft complete. I like to say ‘done is better than perfect’.

  4. Iterate, revise, whatever - read through the first draft - get friends, family or anyone who will read it to go through with a red pen and give you their thoughts.

  5. Write the 2nd draft - get your second draft completed based on the feedback in the previous step.

  6. PUBLISH! Get the thing published!

How to use AI to sell on Amazon KDP

ai robot

© The Economic Times


Chat GPT

ChatGPT is like that little friend who helps you navigate pretty much anything these days!

From brainstorming book ideas to crafting great product descriptions, this AI tool can be your secret weapon for KDP success.

Heck, it can even help you draft emails, T’s and C’s or anything you want to outsource. It's like having a mini-marketing team at your disposal! You can try out the older version of Chat GPT for free, but for more advanced features you have to pay, albeit $20 per month. Try it here.

Jasper AI

Another amazing AI tool developed specifically for writing is Jasper.

Essentially you can create any sort of written work using Jasper and a few pre-made templates or prompts.

I have used Jasper on many occasions to write all sorts of longer form content - the interface is simple to use and you can get a 7 day free trial to see if it works for you - it’s widely considered the best AI software for writing long form content so if this is the way you want to go, I suggest you check it out.

The listing process

Uploading your eBook: A basic walkthrough

Finally, the big moment—uploading your eBook to Amazon. It's simpler than it sounds.

Navigate to your KDP dashboard and select 'Create a new Kindle eBook.' You'll then be guided through several steps, including entering book details, uploading the manuscript, and selecting pricing.

Make sure all the metadata like the title, author name, and ISBN are accurate, as these are crucial for your eBook's visibility.

Pricing strategies: Finding the sweet spot

A vital aspect of your eBook's success is its pricing. You don't want to undervalue your work, but overpricing can drive potential readers away.

Study your competition and consider your target audience's spending habits. Remember, if you opt for KDP Select, you can also offer temporary promotions, making your eBook more attractive to buyers.

The power of keywords: How to get found

Keywords are the search terms potential readers use to find eBooks in your niche. They're essentially the building blocks of your eBook's visibility.

Use tools like Google's Keyword Planner or MerchantWords to identify potent keywords that can drive organic traffic to your listing.

Writing a compelling book description: Hook, line, and sinker

Your book description is the elevator pitch of your eBook. It has to be captivating, insightful, and a call to action—all at once.

Structure your description to introduce the problem you're solving or the adventure you're offering, elaborate on what the reader will gain, and conclude with a compelling call to action. Make it impossible for the reader to scroll past without clicking 'Buy Now.'

Leveraging Amazon's tools

Understanding KDP Select: The pros and cons

KDP Select is like the VIP club of Amazon's eBook marketplace. By enlisting, you gain access to promotional tools like Kindle Countdown Deals and Free Book Promotions.

However, the catch is exclusivity—you can't sell your eBook anywhere else for at least 90 days. Weigh the benefits and downsides to decide if it's the right move for you.

Using Amazon Author Central: Building your brand

Think of Amazon Author Central as your professional resume within the Amazon ecosystem. Here, you can add a compelling biography, feature editorial reviews, and even link to your blog.

It's your chance to build credibility and connect with your readers on a personal level.

Advanced strategies for eBook selling

While it's essential to get the basics right, long-term success in selling books on Amazon often requires a more nuanced approach. Advanced sellers tap into Amazon's rich array of features and services to maximize their reach and profits.

For instance, you could make use of Amazon's A9 algorithm, which takes into account factors such as customer behaviour, relevance, and product listing completeness.

Knowing how this algorithm works can significantly enhance your book's visibility.

Strategic pricing: Flash sales and bundles

Consider implementing pricing strategies that go beyond simply setting a fixed rate. Flash sales, for instance, can provide a quick boost in sales and reviews.

Bundling, where you offer several eBooks as a package deal, can also attract readers who are looking for value for money.

Seasonal and event-based marketing

Every season or major event (like back-to-school or Christmas) offers an opportunity to market your eBook anew.

Leverage these events by creating special promotions or bundling deals that make your eBook a tempting purchase.

Tapping Into global markets

While it's easy to focus solely on the U.S. market, remember that Amazon operates worldwide. Research which countries are consuming books in your genre and consider creating specific marketing strategies for those areas.

Translation services are more affordable than ever and could open doors to non-English speaking audiences.

Crafting the perfect follow-up email sequence

Creating a successful email marketing campaign can really boost your review rate, and keep your audience ‘warm’ for subsequent books too.

After a customer has made a purchase, a well-crafted email sequence can boost reviews, encourage repeat purchases, and build a loyal customer base, eager for more content.

Platforms like Mailchimp or ConvertKit can help you automate this process.

Troubleshooting: What to do when sales slump

Every seller faces hiccups. Whether it's a drop in sales, negative reviews, or algorithm changes, the key is not to panic. Be prepared to reassess your strategy and make data-backed decisions. It's all part of the business cycle.

Benefits of collaborations

Writing can be a solitary activity, but selling doesn't have to be. Collaborating with other authors in your genre can be mutually beneficial. Whether it's cross-promotion, bundle deals, or guest appearances on blogs or podcasts, teamwork can amplify your reach.

Diversifying your portfolio

While Amazon offers a vast marketplace, it's also wise to consider diversifying your platforms for added security and income streams. Platforms like Kobo, Apple Books, and Google Play Books offer alternative channels that can be profitable.

Crafting an omni-channel marketing strategy

With the rise of social media, having a multi-channel marketing strategy can increase your chances of getting noticed. Use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn to share valuable content, promote your ebook, and build a community. These platforms offer paid advertising options tailored for various budgets and audiences.

Adapting to algorithm changes

Like any online platform, Amazon's algorithm undergoes regular updates. Keeping abreast of these changes can help you adapt your strategies in real-time, maintaining your eBook's visibility and profitability.

Professional tools for the modern author

In today's digital age, there are a tonne of Amazon seller tools that can help you in your eBook journey.

These range from project management tools like Trello for tracking your writing and marketing tasks, to advanced analytics tools that dig deep into your sales and customer behaviour.

Rinse and repeat

Once you have the basic process of writing and publishing your first ebook its simply a case of repeating the cycle.

The more books you publish and the more you become familiar with the platform, the flywheel effect of selling on Amazon will get going - the more you sell = the more you sell!

To sum up

To excel in the competitive world of eBook selling, mastering the basics is just the starting point.

Adopting advanced strategies, diversifying your efforts, and staying adaptable are key to sustaining success.

Meet Ranktracker

The All-in-One Platform for Effective SEO

Behind every successful business is a strong SEO campaign. But with countless optimization tools and techniques out there to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start. Well, fear no more, cause I've got just the thing to help. Presenting the Ranktracker all-in-one platform for effective SEO

We have finally opened registration to Ranktracker absolutely free!

Create a free account

Or Sign in using your credentials

The world of eBook selling is vibrant and ever-changing, and with the right approach, you can carve out your own success story.

Bonus! FAQ: Selling ebooks online

Is it profitable to sell eBooks on Amazon?

Can you make money selling eBooks on Amazon? In a word—yes! But let's get real; not everyone is going to write an Amazon best seller.

Profitability hinges on a cocktail of factors like your niche, marketing strategy, and book quality. But with the right moves, you could be laughing all the way to the bank.

How much do you get from selling an eBook on Amazon?

Ah, the million-dollar—or maybe just thousand-dollar—question. Your earnings depend on the royalty option you pick: 35% or 70%.

Don't forget, there are also some fees and regional pricing considerations to think about. But when all's said and done, your earning potential is in your hands!

How much does the average eBook sell for?

Let's talk numbers, shall we? While prices vary like flavors at an ice cream shop, most eBooks dance between the $0.99 and $9.99 mark.

Your book's genre, length, and your own clout as an author will play roles in determining its price tag. But remember, pricing isn't static; feel free to experiment to find your eBook's sweet spot!

Matt Hapgood

Matt Hapgood


Matt Hapgood is a father, surfer, and entrepreneur. He has worn many hats in his career, from being a removal guy in Vancouver to teaching elementary kids in the UK, as well as a parking valet in the French Alps. He’s the founder and main contributor to MattHapgood.com and is currently living in the Algarve, Portugal.

Link: MattHapgood.com

Start using Ranktracker… For free!

Find out what’s holding your website back from ranking.

Create a free account

Or Sign in using your credentials

Different views of Ranktracker app