How to Make Money by Self-Publishing an E-Book? - Make Money Online Easily


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Thursday, August 10, 2023

How to Make Money by Self-Publishing an E-Book?


Since the emergence of the digital era in recent years, self-publishing has revitalized the publishing industry. Thus, authors have unprecedented freedom to publish their works independently and reach millions of audiences easily and sharply. E-books have become increasingly popular due to their convenience and accessibility; offering writers an amazing opportunity to monetize their work and earn millions of dollars.

However, to be successful, authors must comprehend the self-publishing process, marketing tactics, and industry developments. Without learning these basics, it is very tough for a writer to get the benefits from this goldmine.

In this blog, we'll take you through the process of self-publishing an e-book and guide you to maximize profits through effective marketing and business tactics. Whether you're a veteran author or just starting, this post offers invaluable insights into the world of self-publishing that will help both your writing and financial objectives.

What is Self-Publishing?

Before venturing into this field, let’s understand what is self-publishing. This is the practice of publishing a book or other written work without the assistance of traditional publishing companies. This could involve tasks such as writing, editing, formatting, designing, and marketing the book; in addition to distributing and selling it through online platforms or other channels.

Self-publishing has seen a meteoric rise in popularity in recent years due to advancements in technology and an ever-increasing demand for digital content. It gives authors more control over their work, retains more of the profits, and reaches a wider audience than through traditional publishing methods.

Why Self-Publishing is Important?

Self-publishing gives authors more control over their work and makes publishing easier and cheaper. With digital publishing tools and platforms, authors may self-publish and reach a wider audience without traditional publishers. Self-publishing gives authors full control over editing, cover design, pricing, and marketing, letting them target their audience. Self-publishing lets authors keep more revenue and publish faster. Self-publishing appeals to authors who want more creative freedom, specialized appeal, and a larger proportion of income.


Look at the following table and see the differences and advantages of self-publishing over traditional publishing:



Traditional Publishing



Limited control over editing, cover design, pricing, and marketing decisions.

Full control over all aspects of the book, including editing, cover design, pricing, and marketing decisions.


Distribution is handled by the publisher but may be limited to certain regions or channels.

Distribution is handled by the author, who can choose from a range of print and digital options and reach a global audience through online retailers and social media.


Long and unpredictable timeline, with the possibility of rejection or delay.

Shorter timeline, with the ability to publish as soon as the book is ready.


Advance payment and royalties, but a smaller percentage of profits.

No advance payment, but a larger percentage of profits.


Marketing is largely the responsibility of the publisher, but may also involve the author.

Marketing is the responsibility of the author, but can be more personalized and targeted to the author's audience.


Traditional publishing can lend credibility and prestige to an author but may limit creativity and niche appeal.

Self-publishing can allow for more creative freedom and niche appeal but may require more effort to establish credibility and reach a wider audience.


Earning Potential in Self-Publishing Industry

The earning potential in the self-publishing industry varies significantly based on factors like an author's genre, marketing strategies, pricing model, and sales volume. According to industry reports, average authors earn between $1,000-$5,000 annually from their self-published books; top performers may make up to $100,000 annually. According to

·        Roxane Gay received $100,000 for Hunger (her fourth book, a memoir).

·        Scott Westerfeld received $175,000 for Extras (his 15th book, YA sci-fi).

·        Viet Thanh Nguyen received $250,000 for The Refugees (his third book, a collection of short stories).

·        Gillian Flynn received $400,000 for Gone Girl (her third book, a thriller).

·        Kristen Roupenian received $1,200,000 for You Know You Want This (her first book, a short story collection including the viral “Cat Person”). (Source:

However, it's essential to note that these figures are just averages and some authors may earn significantly more or less than these amounts. The success of a self-published e-book largely relies on its author's ability to effectively market and promote its work to its desired audience.

Furthermore, self-publishing can give authors more control over their earnings than traditional publishing does. Unlike traditional publishing, which typically pays authors a percentage of the book's sales revenue, self-published authors keep more of the profits from e-book sales.

Overall, the earning potential in self-publishing can be immense for authors who put in the effort to craft a high-quality e-book and successfully market their work to a target audience.

However, it's essential to remember that self-publishing isn't always easy; success often necessitates significant time, dedication, and financial investment.

05 Best Ways to Make Money with Self-Publishing E-Books

With self-publishing e-books, authors can generate income in many ways:

Royalties From Sales

The main source of income for authors of self-published e-books is royalties from sales. Depending on the platform and pricing strategy, the percentage of the book's sale price can change.

Direct Sales

Writers can use their websites or other platforms to market their e-books to readers directly. Although it takes more work in terms of marketing and advertising, this enables authors to keep a larger portion of the income.


Some of the services, like Kindle Unlimited or Scribd, pay authors according to how many pages their customers read.


Writers can also make more money by selling translation and overseas rights to their e-books, which enables them to reach a wider audience.

Selling Stuff to Readers

Writers can produce and sell items like t-shirts and mugs that are relevant to their electronic publications.

Preparing Your E-book for Publication

Self-publishing begins with the preparation of an e-book. Since there are a huge number of e-books and traditional books available in the digital market, your book must stand out and catch the expectation level of your target audience. Of course, formatting, designing, and presenting your e-book takes time and effort. You should avail your time to ensure a smooth reading experience. Your e-book must be meticulously prepared from file format to cover.

In the following paragraphs, we'll share valuable stuff for preparing your self-publishing e-book to help you succeed in the competitive e-book market.

Writing and Editing Your E-Book

The initial step in creating an e-book is writing and editing its content. Before you begin writing, it is essential that you have a firm knowledge of your target audience and the content you wish to convey. Once you complete the initial draft of your e-book, take time to check for grammar, spelling, and clarity.

Formatting Your E-Book for Different Platforms

Once your e-book has been written and edited, the next step is to format it for various platforms. This involves converting it into the correct file format for each platform you plan on publishing, such as ePub or MOBI. It's essential that all formatting appears consistent and professional across all platforms.

Designing an Eye-Catching Cover

Your eBook's cover design is crucial for drawing in potential readers. A well-crafted cover should be eye-catching, professional, and visually appealing. You have several options when it comes to creating the cover. You can do it yourself; hire a graphic designer; or utilize an online cover design service through freelancing websites like Upwork or Fiverr.

In addition to these essential steps, it's also essential to think about pricing and marketing your e-book. When setting a price for your e-book, think about the perceived value of your content as well as similar titles in your niche. When marketing it, build a website or social media presence, utilize email marketing and book promotion websites, and offer free samples or promotions to generate interest.

Overall, creating an e-book for self-publishing can be a time-consuming and challenging task, yet it is necessary to guarantee its success. By following these key steps, you will achieve high-quality e-books that look professional, are well formatted, and appealing to your target audience - then successfully market them in the market.

Publishing Your E-Book

Publishing an e-book requires both time and dedication but the final result will be worth all the effort!

5 Top Self-Publishing Platforms to Publish Your E-Book

Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing: This platform is one of the most popular options for self-publishing e-books. It enables authors to easily upload their content and cover, set pricing, and distribute their work across Amazon's global marketplaces. It offers a 60% royalty on the list price ranging from $2.99 to $9.99. For prices more than $9.99, you will receive a 70% royalty.  


·        Largest e-book marketplace with a wide audience.

·        Easy and free to use.

·        Provides marketing tools and resources.

·        Offers multiple royalty options.


·        Relies heavily on Amazon algorithms for visibility.

·        Can face competition from a vast selection of other e-books.

Ingram Spark: Ingram Spark is a self-publishing platform that distributes to over 40,000 retailers, libraries, and schools around the world. Authors can create both print and electronic editions of their work as well as access professional editing, design, and marketing services at no additional cost.


·        Extensive distribution

·        Provides both print and e-book publishing options.

·        Offers professional design, editing, and marketing services.

·        Allows for flexible pricing and royalty options.


·        Costly than some other self-publishing platforms.

·        Limited marketing options.

·        May not provide as much exposure as Amazon KDP.

Barnes & Noble Press: Barnes & Noble Press is a self-publishing platform having 614 retail stores in the United States (till 2020). It offers up to 70% royalty to the authors for e-books priced between $0.99-$9.99 while 65% royalty for books of price greater than $9.99. It enables authors to create and publish their e-books or print books for sale on the Barnes & Noble website. They provide various tools and resources for authors, such as cover design and marketing services.


·        Access to an expansive Barnes & Noble audience

·        Offers user-friendly formatting and cover design tools, making it easy for beginners.

·        Competitive royalty rates.

·        Offers hardcover printing and distribution.


·        Smaller audience than Amazon KDP.

·        Limited editing tools for formatting.

·        May require additional marketing efforts for increased exposure.

Draft2Digital: Draft2Digital is a self-publishing platform that enables authors to create and distribute their e-books to various retailers such as Amazon, Apple Books, and Kobo. It offers 10% royalty rates to the books which are sold through its platform. It also provides formatting, design, and marketing tools so authors can produce professional-looking e-books.


·        Wide distribution network across multiple retailers

·        Provides formatting/design tools

·        No exclusivity requirements


·        Limited marketing tools/resources

·        Low royalty rates as compared to other competitors.

Kobo Writing Life: Kobo Writing Life is a self-publishing platform that enables authors to publish their e-books and distribute them via the Kobo e-bookstore. It offers various tools and resources for authors to create and market their e-books, such as professional formatting and design options. Kobo Writing Life offers 70% royalty to the authors if the price of their book is $2.99 or more. If the list price of your e-book is less than $2.99, then you will receive a 45% royalty.


·        Provides competitive royalty options with customizable pricing.

·        Provides full control to authors once their e-book is published on Kobo Writing Life.

·        Easy-to-use user interface – free for everyone to use.


·        Requiring additional marketing efforts to gain exposure.

·        Limited customer support service.

Apple Books: Apple Books is a self-publishing platform that enables authors to publish and distribute their e-books to an international audience of Apple device users. It provides various tools and resources for authors to create professional-looking e-books, such as high-quality design options. Furthermore, the platform offers 70% royalty rates on all e-books, regardless of any pricing threshold.  Though its audience size may not match that of Amazon, Apple Books remains valuable for authors looking to reach a global audience of passionate readers.


·        Wide range of dedicated audience of Apple device users.

·        Superior design and formatting capabilities.

·        Easy and free-to-use interface - provides marketing tools and resources.

·        Competitive royalty options.


·        May require a Mac computer to utilize some features.

·        Can be more challenging to gain exposure and acquire reviews.

Most Popular Topics for Self-Publishing E-Books

Through self-publishing, authors can create and distribute books on a range of subjects that conventional publishers might not always be interested in. Because of this, there are a wide variety of topics for self-publishing e-books. Non-fiction subjects including business, self-help, health, fitness, and cookbooks are among the most popular ones for self-publishing e-books. Other popular fiction niches include science fiction/fantasy, romance, and mysteries. Self-publishing is also common for autobiographies, how-to manuals, and specialty subjects like alternative medicine and spirituality.

How to Determine the Ideal Price for Your E-Book?

Determining the ideal price for your e-book can be a difficult decision. You want to ensure it is affordable but also honors the worth of your work too. So, consider who your target audience is. Keep the pricing strategies and industry trends in mind when setting this ideal amount. With some careful consideration, you can set a balance that makes sense for both parties involved.

Uploading Your E-Book and Cover to The Platform

Once you've prepared and formatted your e-book, as well as designed an eye-catching cover, the next step is uploading both to a self-publishing platform. This usually involves creating an account, selecting an appropriate file format, and following the platform's guidelines for uploading. With some consideration, uploading can be an effortless process that puts you on the road to self-publishing success.

Marketing Your Self-Publishing E-book

Marketing your self-published e-book is essential for reaching your intended audience and driving sales. Here are some key strategies to consider:

Building a Website and Social Media Presence

Establishing an online presence can help you engage potential readers and cultivate an audience. By sharing content related to your e-book, such as excerpts, behind-the-scenes info, and reviews on various platforms, you can generate attention online and expand its visibility.

Utilizing Email Marketing and Book Promotion Websites

Utilizing email marketing and book promotion websites can help you reach a wider audience and promote your e-book to potential readers. By offering free content like a sample chapter or exclusive access to your book, you may encourage readers to sign up for your mailing list so they stay engaged with your work. Here is a list of websites through which authors promote their books:

·        BookBub

·        Goodreads

·        BookGorilla

·        Bargain Booksy

·        eBookSoda

·        Freebooksy

·        The Fussy Librarian

·        ManyBooks

·        Riffle

·        ReadingDeals

Creating a Book Trailer or Promotional Video

Book trailers and promotional videos can be an effective way to grab readers' attention and generate interest in your e-book. By crafting captivating videos that highlight key themes and plot points of your book, you can build anticipation among potential readers and incentivize them to check it out.

Offering a Free Sample or Running Promotions to Generate Buzz

Offering free samples or running promotions, such as discounted pricing or limited-time offers, are an effective way to build anticipation and attract readers to your e-book. By giving readers an early taste of your work or incentivizing them with an attractive limited-time offer, you may encourage them to take a chance on your book.

Maximizing Profit with Your Self-Published E-book

Maximizing profits with your self-published e-book requires effective marketing strategies and in-depth knowledge of your target audience. Here are some key strategies to consider:

Utilizing Analytics to Monitor Sales and Align Your Marketing Strategies

Analytics can give you invaluable insight into your e-book's performance, such as sales figures, audience demographics, and marketing effectiveness. By using analytics tools to monitor sales, you can adjust marketing tactics accordingly, thus, optimizing your efforts and boosting profitability.

Offering Additional Products or Services Related to Your E-Book

Expanding the scope of products or services related to your e-book, such as merchandise or consulting services. Surely, it can help you to generate extra income and boost profitability. By leveraging expertise and brand recognition, you can offer valuable add-ons that complement and enhance the value proposition created by the e-book.

Creating Sequels to Your Self-Publishing E-Book

Creating series or sequels for your e-book can be an excellent way to generate repeat business and boost profitability in the long run. By cultivating a loyal fan base and expanding content offerings, you can build a sustainable business model that maximizes profits.


Self-publishing an e-book can be a lucrative and rewarding venture for authors. By following the necessary steps to prepare and publish your work, you can effectively market your eBooks and maximize profits. Don't be scared to get started pursuing your writing dreams. Self-publishing offers an alternative option to traditional publishing that can help you reach both creative and financial success.


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