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Hello, our distinguished readers! We are pleased to announce one of our tech blogs JoeLinksTech.blogspot.com has been merged with Microsofttut.com. If you searched or clicked on JOELINKSTECH.BLOGSPOT.COM and was taken to MICOSOFTTUT.com, it is because we redirected Joe-Links Tech blog to Microsoft Tutorials blog and moved all the posts from the former into Microsofttut.com . 
merge of joelinkstech.blogspot.com with microsofttut.com
This is to enable us concentrate and provide professional tutorial articles and posts on Microsoft Office Tutorial Packages, Photoshop, Self-Publishing and Marketing of Books Online, Latest Android and PC Soccer, Action and Adventure Games and General Tech Updates without any divided attention.

HOW TO DESIGN EBOOK & PRINT BOOK COVERS WITH ADOBE PHOTOSHOP

Adobe Photoshop is the most popular offline photo editing tool used to create stunning designs. Professional Book Cover designs really speak a lot about the content of a book. It attracts a potential buyer's attention even before the buyer reads your book's description. There are many awesome software that allow help you to easily design your book cover be it eBook, paperback or print book for publishing in any book publishing platform like amazon and CreateSpace. Some of these software allow you design offline like Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign which work hand in hand with Adobe Illustrator while some are online tools like Canva, Adobe Spark, Cover Design Studio, etc. Adobe Photoshop is also used to edit pictures, social media pictures, design ad banners, page logo, etc.
How to design book covers with Adobe Photoshop
In this tutorial article, I will give you a step by step guide on how to design professional eBook and hard cover for your books especially for publishing on Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) and CreateSpace. I will also give you a list of some recommended online graphic tools that can help you design awesome and professional book covers. You must have a basic knowledge of Adobe Photoshop interface or workspace before you can follow up in this tutorial article. I already explained the basic concepts of Adobe Photoshop in my previous article, especially how to manipulate layers and texts. I advise you to study it before you continue with this tutorial article. I also gave three free working download links to cracked versions of Adobe Photoshop CS6 and CC.

I also wrote tutorial article on How to design professional ebook covers and images with Canva, an online free tool

Print Book Cover Versus eBook Cover Design

The design pattern for Print book or Paperback covers are slightly different from that of eBook covers. eBook covers design is simpler in the sense that it requires fewer steps because it is only made up of just the front design. It has no back or spine. The basic parts of an eBook cover include the Title, Sub title (optional), Images (optional), Author name, etc.

Below is a labelled screenshot of a finished eBook cover design sample of one of my amazon books in Adobe Photoshop CS6.

Screenshot: eBook cover sample
Print book and Paperback covers resemble an opened book which is made up of the front, spine and the back. The design steps are longer than that of an ecover design. The dimension is more than twice that of an ecover of the same size. The parts of a print book or paperback cover include all the parts of an eBook plus the book blurb which is the little description about a book and the author located at the back of the cover, the barcode/ ISBN area where you place your book’s barcode and ISBN. 

For Amazon paperback and CreateSpace print book design, you only have to create a space for the bar code and ISBN at the back part of the cover design because they offer free ISBNs for their books which cannot be used in any other online book platform. But if you want to sell the print book in other platforms, then you have to buy an ISBN for your book.

Below is a labelled screenshot of a finished print book design sample of one the paperback version of the same book in Adobe Photoshop.
Screenshot: Print book sample

So now that you have seen the difference between an eBook cover and that of a Print book, let me now walk you through the design steps of each of them.

How to Setup and Design an eBook Cover in Adobe Photoshop


Before you start designing an eBook cover, ensure that you have done a keyword research and have concluded on the keyword phrases to use for your book. If you wish to add an image to your book design, search for a relevant image and download it on your computer and save it on a location where you can easily locate it. Also conclude on the background colour and font styles and colours to use. This will help to increase your design speed and accuracy.

NOTE:

You don’t need a template for an eBook. You have to set it up from scratch in Photoshop by creating a new document.

To Design and Setup Your ecover in Photoshop:

1. Open the Photoshop application on your computer. Then press Ctrl + N (for Mac users, press Command + N). This prompts the New document dialog box.

2. Type in values for the width and height for your eBook cover. Amazon recommends a height to width ratio of 1.6; that is a ratio of 8:5. I prefer to use 2700 pixels for my ebook’s height and a width of 1800 pixels; that is a width to height ratio of 3:2 (that is 1.5) which is a bit narrower.

3. Set the Resolution to 72 pixel/inch. Set the Colour Mode to RGB Colour 8 bits and then set the Background Content to White as shown in the screenshot below and then click OK.
Screenshot: The new document dialogue box settings
4. Set the colour you wish to use as your eBook cover design background as the Foreground colour by first clicking on the Set foreground icon located below the Zoom tool in the Tools panel. This prompts the Colour Picker dialog box. Select the desired colour and click OK as shown in the screenshot below. Notice also that each colour has a six digit which starts with the hash sign (#).
Screenshot: Set the foreground colour
5. Select the Rectangle shape tool from the Tools panel and draw a rectangle over the canvas. Ensure that it is of the same width and height as canvas. You can set it to the exact value through the Tools options bar as shown in the screenshot below. I typed in 1800 px in the width text box and 2700 px in the height because it is the dimension of my book canvas.
Screenshot: Draw your rectangle to cover the book canvas

NOTE:

The rectangle is on a separate layer. So you can always edit it by simply selecting its layer from the Layers tab as shown in the screenshot above and then edit it through the Tools options bar. This also applies to any other layer.

6. Next is to type a title, sub title (if there is any) and the author name for your eBook. Select the Type tool (shortcut key is letter T) from the Tools panel. Insert your cursor where you want the title text to start and then type in the title texts or phrase. To change the font colour, style and size, you have to first highlight the entire text and then change them from the Tools options bar as shown in the screenshot below. Hit the Commit button to apply the formatting to your ebook design. Ensure that your title and sub title text, colour and font style are eligible enough and attractive and always bold your text characters. If your sub title is long, use the paragraph text type by clicking on the canvas and then dragging diagonally to define a boundary for the sub title characters as shown in the screenshot below.
Screenshot: Type and format the book title

NOTE:

Also note that the title, sub title and author name texts are in different layers in the Layers. This means you can further format each one separately by first selecting its layer. You can move a layer up or down Layers on top will have their contents place above the ones below it if their contents placed in the same position on the canvas.

7. Next is to place the book image. Make sure that you have found and downloaded the image you wish to use for your book cover design and the image should be of high quality. You use the Place command to insert an image into a design in Adobe Photoshop. Click the File tab and the select Place. This prompts the Place dialog box. Select the image from the save location and the click the Place button as shown in the screenshot below to insert it to your book design.
Screenshot: The place image dialog box
8. Photoshop places the image inside your book cover canvas and automatically activates Free Transform. In order not to distort the width to height ratio of an image while adjusting them hold down the Shift key while draw the points at the edges of the image to resize it. Also position the image properly in your eBook cover design. Then click the Commit button apply the actions as shown in the screenshot below.
Screenshot: click commit to place the image
Congrats! You have just succeeded in designing a stunning eBook cover in Photoshop. 

How to Export Your eBook Cover Design in Photoshop as JPEG Image Format

Now you need to export the file as JPEG because that is the file format that Amazon recommends or accepts for their KDP eBook cover. Do not reduce the quality, Amazon will set the required quality they need.  To achieve this: click the File tab > Save for Web & Devices. This prompts the Save for Web dialog box. Select JPEG from the drop down arrow below the Preset settings and also ensure that the image Quality is set to 100% (maximum) as shown in the screenshot below. 
Screenshot: Export image for web and devices
Then click the Save button, type in a unique file name for the JPG version of your book cover and take note of the save location. Then hit the Save button again to export it. You can now upload this JPG file version of your eBook cover to Amazon KDP following the procedures I explained on How to Setup and Publish on Amazon KDP.

You also need to save the document as a Photoshop file which will have a PSD file extension format. With this file format, you can easily open it in Photoshop and make few modifications without having to start from scratch again when the need arises. To achieve this: click the File tab and then select Save As. This prompts the Save dialog box. Type in a unique file name, specify the save location and then hit the Save button.

How to Download and Use CreateSpace Book Cover Templates

CreateSpace developed print book and KDP paperback templates to make it easier for you to quickly create print-ready files in graphic design software programs like Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, or any software that will allow you to open a .png or PDF file and save a PDF file.

So you can use it both for designing your Amazon Paperback and CreateSpace print book covers.

Download the free CreateSpace book cover template Here. You have to configure your template before you download it by providing the following information about your book:

Book Interior Type: 
You have four options here: Black and White, Black and White with Bleed, Full Colour, Full Colour with Bleed. Choosing Full Colour or Full Colour with bleed increases the printing cost of your book.

Trim Size:
You have a lot of options depending on the dimension of your book. There are some Industry Standard Trim Sizes like 5" x 8" (mostly for novels) and 6" x 9" (mostly for tutorial books, textbooks and recipes), etc. and also some Custom Trim Sizes like 8.25" x 6",  8.5" x 8.5", etc.

Number of Pages:

This refers to the number of pages of your book interior or manuscript. So it is required that you first format and get your book interior ready before you start designing the cover so that you can know exactly the number of pages.

Paper Colour:

You have two options here: White and Cream. White is the most common option.

NOTE:

Any option you specify here for the Book Interior Type, Trim Size and Paper Colour will also be the same option you will specify when setting up and publishing your book on Amazon KDP and CreateSpace.

Also note that larger book dimension or trim size reduces the number of pages, thereby reducing the printing cost.


After configuring the template, click Build Template button as shown in the screenshot below.

configure your cover template
Clicking the Build Template button downloads the template built based on the information you provided in a zip folder which contains two copies of the template, one with the PNG format and the other with a PDF format.

Below is the screenshot of a sample of a cover template for a 6” x 9” Print book (black and white) with 210 pages.
Unzip the folder and save these template files in a location where you can easily locate it.

How to Setup and Design a Print Book or Paperback Cover in Adobe Photoshop

Setting up and designing a professional print book or paperback cover in Photoshop is simple if you are guided properly. You don’t need to be a graphic design expert before you can design a stunning book cover for your Amazon and CreateSpace Print books. Note that the accepted cover file format for Amazon Paperback and CreateSpace print books is print ready PDF. So after designing the print book cover with Adobe Photoshop, you need to export a PDF version of your cover design and then save the PSD file format in case the need to re-adjust the cover design comes up in the future. You will make use of the CreateSpace cover template you downloaded at the beginning of this tutorial section.

To Setup your Paperback Cover Design In Photoshop:

1. Import or open the PDF or PNG file for the Paperback Book Cover Template in your Adobe Photoshop application. The keyboard shortcut key to open a document is Ctrl + O (for Mac users, press Command + O). Ensure that you have unzipped the template file folder before now. Select the PDF file format of the downloaded template and click the Open button as shown in the screenshot below.
Screenshot: open the pdf template file in photoshop
2. This prompts the Import PDF dialog box as shown in the screenshot below. Note that the resolution of the file is 300 pixels/inch or dpi because it is a print book cover. Leave every setting with their default value and click OK.
Screenshot: Click ok to import the pdf template
3. In the opened template file as shown in the second to the last screenshot below, you will notice that some parts of the templates have pink colours, some have white while the bar code area has a yellow colour with its dimension written inside it. The white area is the only area allowed to contain texts. No text is allowed to extend to the pink and yellow areas of the template.

4. The template is made of the three main parts; the front, the spine and the back which also contains the bar code area. Now you need to use the Ruler tool to insert guides at the boundaries of the pink and white regions, which will help you in the design and to ensure that you do not extend any texts to those prohibited parts of the template. To view the rulers: click the View tab and then select Ruler.


5. To insert horizontal guides: click on the horizontal ruler bar and drag a guide to the designated horizontal boundaries. Also, to insert vertical guides: click the vertical ruler bar and drag a guide to the designated vertical boundaries as shown in the screenshot below.

Screenshot: Insert horizontal and vertical guide lines
6. Follow the steps given for designing ebook cover to design your book paperback front part. Use the rectangle tool to draw a rectangle that will cover the front part of the cover template. Insert, position and format your book title, sub title and author name. Also insert and resize your book image as described above. Your image can extend to the edges of your template but your book cover texts should not go beyond the horizontal and vertical guide lines you inserted. 

NOTE:

If you have already created an ebook cover file for the book, open the PSD format of the ebook design, duplicate the layers by highlighting all the layers from the Layers tab. To highlight each layer, hold down the Ctrl key or Command key (on Mac) and then click on each layer once. Then click the options icon Layers option icon as shown in the screenshot below and select Duplicate Layers from the resulting options. Under the Destination section, select the file name of the cover template file and then click OK as shown in the screenshot below.
Screenshot: Dduplicate the ebook design layers
Photoshop duplicates the selected layers and copies them to the specified destination file. Adjust each duplicated layer in the destination file to fit perfectly and properly without crossing the guide line. Below is a screenshot of the finished sample of a properly adjusted front design of a paperback design.
Screenshot: Front part of the paperback cover design
7. The next part of the design is the spine. Select the Rectangle tool from the Tools panel and draw a rectangle. Ensure that the fill colour matches with that of the front part above. The rectangle must not cross the two vertical guide lines at the boundaries of the spine. If you wish the book title and author name in the spine, select the Type tool from the Tools panel. Place your cursor in the spine and type the title and author name of the book and click the Commit button. Then rotate the text 90 degrees to the right using the Free transform tool. The keyboard shortcut to activate this tool is Ctrl + T (for mac users, press Command + T) and then position it properly in the spine area of the book as shown in the screenshot below.
Screenshot: Design the spine part of the print book
8. Next part of the design is the back section of the print book cover. Select the Rectangle tool again from the Tools Panel and then draw a rectangle that will properly cover the remaining part of the template. Another way to achieve this quickly is to duplicate the first rectangle you drew for the front section background and then drag the duplicate over to the back section of the cover design canvas.

9. Next is to insert your book blurb text. Select the Type tool, click and drag to define a boundary to wrap the blurb texts in the back section of the book. Type in the blurb texts. If you have it written somewhere else, copy and paste it in the paragraph type you created as shown in the screenshot below. If you have a picture of the author, you can insert it in the “About the Author” section of the blurb using the Place command as explained earlier above. Make sure that the blurb texts do not extend to the bar code part of the Back section of the paperback book cover as shown in the screenshot below.
Screenshot: Design the back section of the paperback cover
Congrats! You have completely designed an eBook and print book or paperback cover in Adobe Photoshop. 

One more thing! You need to turn of the guides before you export or save your paperback design as PDF in Photoshop.

To Turn Off the Guides in Photoshop:

Click the View tab, navigate to Show and then select Guides as shown in screenshot below.
Screenshot: Turn off the guide lines

How to Save or Export Your Paperback or Print Book Cover As PDF in Photoshop

The next step after designing your print book cover is to export it as print ready PDF from Photoshop or any other photo editing tool you used for cover design. This PDF format is the recommended by Amazon and CreateSpace as the cover file format.

To Export your Book Cover as PDF:

1. Click the File tab and select Save As. This prompts the Save dialog box.

2. Type a unique name for the export file. Specify the save location.

3. Click the Format drop down arrow and select Photoshop PDF (*.PDF; *.PDP) and then click the Save button as shown in the screenshot below.
Screenshot: Save the print book cover as pdf

NOTE:

You can also save the cover design as any other format by selecting the desired format from the drop down menu. You need to save the paperback or print book cover design as a Photoshop file format (*.PSD; *.PDD) so that you can quickly edit the file in future and also export it to any other format.

To Save the Print Book Cover as a Photoshop Document (PSD format):

Click the File tab and then select Save As. This prompts the Save dialog box. Type in a unique file name, specify the save location and then hit the Save button.

Further Resources


You have succeeded in designing a professional eBook and Paperback or Print book cover! Now see how to setup and upload your book cover on CreateSpace.

Have you formatted your book manuscript?

Do you find any part of this tutorial article difficult? Comment below through the comment box and I will gladly put you through.

Also click Here to subscribe for free so that you will get our latest tutorial articles and video updates in your email.

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ADOBE PHOTOSHOP TUTORIAL - LEARN THE BASICS OF GRAPHICS & BOOK COVER DESIGNS

Adobe Photoshop is one of the offline graphic design software that is used to edit pictures, design different professional graphics like book cover designs for various online book publishing platforms, social media images, Ad banners, document files, typography, illustration, 3D modelling and animation, company and website logo, etc. 

In this tutorial article, you will learn the basics of Adobe Photoshop Creative Studio (CS) series and CC series, how to use the various tools to edit pictures and graphics with step by step screenshots. The main aim of this tutorial is to show you some basic features of Photoshop which will help you design professional book covers for your books on Amazon and CreateSpace. I will also give you some working download links where you can download the cracked versions of Adobe Photoshop CS6 and CC for free! 
I will also show you how to install new free fonts to your computer for Photoshop and other application.
Step by Step Training of Adobe Photoshop CS6 and CC
For the illustrations in this tutorial article, I will use Adobe Photoshop CS6. My reason for choosing this version is because it closely resembles Adobe Photoshop CC versions with little differences, which I will point out in the course of this tutorial. I also chose this version so that I can utilize the medium to explain the new features in Adobe Photoshop CS6 which are not available in the previous versions and how to use them.

HOW TO OPTIMIZE YOUR AMAZON BOOKS & PRODUCTS RANKING & LISTING FOR SEARCH ENGINES

Writing books with quality contents pays a lot, like wise selling other good products. But it does not end with good contents or product. You need to optimize your product's content, title, subtitle, categories, bullet point, etc. with keywords in such a way that is friendly with search engines like google and amazon. Also note that different search engines have different algorithms. So you need to understand the algorithms of different search engines, especially Google and Amazon if you want to really increase your book royalty earnings, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is very important if you really want to boost your book's and product's rank and sales. This is because more than 80% of sales on Amazon, CreateSpace and other book marketing platforms come from searches on Search Engines like Google and Amazon Search engines. There are some extra steps you need to know, which I will reveal in here!
how to Optimize your books for search engines
In this tutorial article, I will walk you through on how you can dramatically optimize your products ranks, sales and for Google and Amazon Search Engines. Most search engines have different algorithms which you must understand if you want your products to be friendly with them. I will also show you how to tweak your product's keywords in the title, description, bullet point, etc. to yield optimum sales without violating any of the policies of Amazon. I will also show you some relevant SEO tools and feedback software both free and paid ones that will help you optimize your amazon product listing.

HOW TO DESIGN PROFESSIONAL BOOK COVERS WITH CANVA TOOL FOR FREE

Online Book Self-Publishing is gradually taking over offline book publishing. You can now write a book, design awesome covers, publish, promote and market it online, most times without spending a dine! Canva is one of those online tools that helps you design professional images, book covers like eBook covers, Kindle covers, Wattpad book covers, etc. and even promote your designs through their social media. One of the advantages of Canva graphic tool is that it is very easy to learn. You don't really need some previous deep knowledge of graphic design to use the tool like in Adobe PhotoShop. Most graphic designers refer to Canva as the Quick-to-Learn version of Adobe Photoshop and InDesign.
How to Design Book Covers with Canva Online Tool

Apart form book cover designs, you can also use Canva online free image design tool to design:
  • Social media and Email Headers like facebook posts, Instagram post, Pinterest graphic, Tumblr graphic, Youtube thumbnail, Etsy cover photo, LinkedIn post header, etc.
  • Documents like certificates, letter head, resume, magazine, presentation, etc.
  • Blogging graphic, Infographics, etc.
  • Marketing materials like flyers, business cards, posters, labels, etc.
  • Events like Post cards, Invitation cards, program cards, etc. 
  • Ad like facebook ads, twitter ads, google adsense, etc.

HOW TO TURN YOUR LAPTOP INTO WIFI HOTSPOT USING UC BROWSER

UC browser has made it easy for you to turn your PC into a virtual WIFI hotspot without stress. Once you turn this capability on your PC, you can now conect your other smart phones to internet through this UC WIFI hotspot. This works on all laptops regardless of the version of Windows Operating System or MAC you are using as far as it has a wireless network card.
How to create a wifi hotspot with UC browser

How to Turn Your PC to Wifi Hotspot With UC Browser

Before now, you use the windows command prompt to turn your PC to a WIFI hotspot. But with this virtual WIFI hotspot feature in UC browsers, you can now easily turn your laptop into a wirless hotpot even without the knowledge of Cmd syntaxes.

REVIEW OF AMAZON & CREATESPACE VS OTHER BOOK SALES PLATFORMS - WHY I SELF-PUBLISH ON AMAZON

Most times, it seems very difficult to discover the best online book publishing company or platform. After writing my very first manuscript, I found it very difficult to discover the best publishing platform to use. I tried a lot of book publishing platforms. In the course of my experiment, I discovered that some platforms favour a particular category of books. I have decided to write a review of some of the book publishing platforms I tried out and why I have chosen to stick with Amazon KDP and CreateSpace. The truth is that every book publishing platform has its pros and cons, likewise Amazon and CreateSpace. But their pros are more than their cons. I will still show you some pros and cons of different online book publishing platforms.
Review of amazon kdp and other publishing platforms
Are you a passionate book writer with no money to sponsor your book publishing? 
Have you been finding a way to monetize your write ups without spending a dine? 
Have you been looking for the easiest way to make money online even without having a website?

HOW TO SETUP & ADVERTISE YOUR KDP BOOKS & UNDERSTAND YOUR SALE REPORTS

When your books might have started selling on Amazon, the best way to increase your kindle and paperback book sales is to run ads on amazon. You can advertise your KDP eBooks on Amazon.com (US) through Amazon Marketing Services (AMS). You can also advertise your book on big social medias like facebook, twitter, GoodReads, etc. You can also check out the performance of your books and even download the daily, weekly, monthly and even all-time report of your kindle books and paperback books. Always study your book's sales report from time to time as this will help you know the book that will yield more returns when you run your ads. AMS allows you to set the budget you want to spend and the maximum amount you are willing to pay when a customer clicks your ad. When customers click your ad, they will redirected to your book's detail page on Amazon store, which might eventually lead to sale boost. The good thing about this ad is it is Pay Per Click (CPC), that means that charges only accrue when a customer clicks your ad.

How To Advertise Your KDB Books Using Amazon Marketing Services (AMS) Account

You must have setup your Amazon Marketing Services Account before you can be able to setup and run ads on amazon.com for your kindle books. Click Here to Set Up yours now!

I also wrote a tutorial article on HOW TO OPTIMIZE YOUR PRODUCT LISTING FOR AMAZON & GOOGLE SEARCH ENGINES

Your books must meet the following criteria before you can schedule and run ads for them:
Here AMS offers two ad types for KDP eBooks:

a. Sponsored product ads: This type of ads drive sales with keyword-targeted ads that appear below search results and on detail pages.

b. Product display ads: This type of ads drive awareness of your book with reader and genre-targeted ads on detail pages.

Setting up or scheduling an ad for your kindle book in Amazon Marketing Services Account (AMS) is very easy. You can set it up using this five steps explained with screenshots below.

SEE: A SIMPLIFIED GUIDE TO SET UP, SELF-PUBLISH & SELL YOUR BOOKS ON AMAZON.


SEE ALSO: HOW TO SET UP, SELF-PUBLISH & SELL YOUR BOOKS ON CREATESPACE.

To create an ad for your book:

Step 1: Select an eBook to Advertize:

Remember that you will need to create an Amazon Marketing Services account. Click the Select button to select an ebook you wish to advertize as shown below.
screenshot 1: select an ebook for the ad

Step 2: Set your campaign name, budget, and duration

Type a campaign name which you want to use to identify the campaign.
Then type an average daily budget of your choice.
Finally, specify the duartion of the ad. You have two options here:

a. Run campaign continuously starting today
b. Select a date range.

Always use the second option if you already budgeted a specific amount for the ad. Choose a start and end date from the calendar.
The screenshot below illustrates step 2 better.
screenshot 2: set your campaign name and duration

Step 3: Select a targeting type and CPC bid

Targeting helps your ad reach the right customers. Depending on the campaign type you choose, targeting will vary. You have two options here:

a. Automatic Targeting: Amazon targets your ads to all relevant customer searches based on your product information. This algorithm collects and uses relevant keywords for all selected products. I prefer this option.


b. Manual Targeting: This option allows you to add your own keywords or phrases to your ad campaigns. You can create your own keywords based on your book's content, genre, and similar authors. You can also use suggested keywords from the ad builder. 
But note that Ad keywords are not the same as search keywords in your book’s metadata.

Next is to specify a Cost-Per-Click (CPC) bid for your ad. This is the maximum amount you are willing to pay when customers click on your ad.
The screenshot below illustrates step 3 better.
screenshot 3: select a targeting type

Step 4: Customize your ad

Here you put your ad write-ups which should contain some keywords for book. The keyword's insertion should sound natural. Don't over-do things here. You have a maximum of 150 characters here as shown in the screenshot below.
Screenshot 4: customize your ads

5. Preview your ads

Here you will see how your ads will appear live when it is approved. Remember that your ads will first be reviewed before it is approved.

You can save your ad and then come back to edit it before you launch your ad campaign by click the Save As draft button. If you want to submit your ad for review, click the Launch Ad button.

Below is a screenshot of how your ads will appear after it has been approved by Amazon Marketing Services Ad review teams.
Screenshot 5: preview your ad



For more details on how to setup your ads and understand how amazon ads work, Click Here.

Learn and Download Adobe Photoshop from Scratch and for free Here.

The Reports tab which is located beside the Bookshelf tab helps you view the performance of your books. Understanding how to check your book's performance will help you to be able to estimate the royalty you will earn for a particular book and how to promote your books to boost their sales and also the version of your book to put more promotional effort especially if you have both the kindle ebook and paperback versions of all your books available.

To Check Up your Book's Performance and Report:
Click the Reports tab. This takes you to the Reports page, where you can see and check out many details about your books sales and promotion performance. This helps you know your books that are performing very well and the ones that are not.

There are about 8 tabs in the Reports page:
  • Sales Dashboard
  • Historical
  • Month-to-Date
  • Payments
  • Pre-orders
  • Promotions
  • Prior Months' Royalties
  • Ad Campaigns 

Sales Dashboard

This is the default tab that opens up once you click the Reports tab. It shows you the number of your books ordered per day, the Kindle Edition Normalized Pages (KENP) read from KU and KOLL in graphical form and then the royalty earned. You can also see the number of your books sold for a selected date range. You can further sort the report on this page by market places, Author, Book Format, Book Titles and by Date. Use the calendar to filter the time-frame provided on the dashboard. You can select any dates within the last 90 days. All you do is to simply select the criteria you need and the report will be displayed based on these criteria you set.

A screenshot of the Sales Dashboard is shown below.

Amazon sales dashboard

The Units Ordered graph displays the graph of paid and free unit sales for your selected title(s) in your chosen time period. This graph is updated as orders are placed in Kindle stores worldwide. Use the filters above to customize your data. Daily totals are calculated based on the local time of the marketplace where the order was recorded (e.g. GMT for amazon.co.uk).



The Kindle Edition Normalized Pages (KENP) Read from KU and KOLL graph determines the royalties you earn from KU (Kindle Unlimited) and KOLL (Kindle Owners’ Lending Library). This graph is updated as pages are read by customers who borrow your book from KU and KOLL. Use the filters above to customize your data.



The Royalties Earned table shows your royalties earned from sales of your eBook and Paperback titles during your selected time period. It takes up to 24 hours for eBook royalties to be recorded once an order is placed for your title. Paperback royalties are recorded whenever a copy of your book is shipped to fulfill a customer order. This table does not include royalties earned from the KDP Select Global Fund. For KU/KOLL royalties, which are processed on a monthly basis, please refer to your Prior Months’ Royalties report. 

You can download the full report of your book sales by clicking the Generate Report tab located below the Royalty Earned table as shown above. The new report format allows for easier sorting and pivoting in Excel, and is available for months starting from October 2016. The old report format will continue to be available for months prior to August 2017 for which the KDP Select Global Fund has been finalized. For months after and including August 2017, only the new format will be available.

Historical

This tab displays your historical sales and KU/KOLL data up to the month of the most recently released Prior Months' Royalty report. It shows you the graph of Unit Sales and KOLL Borrows, the Kindle Edition Normalized Pages (KENP) Read from KU and KOLL and the Royalties Earned table. KU and KOLL started measuring pages read on July 2015, so no KENP data is available before this month.

Month-to-Date

This tab displays your unit sales transactions and KENP read for the current and prior month. It displays the title of the books, the ASIN, the Units Sold, Units Refunded, Net Units Sold, KENP Read, Free Units Promo and Free Units Price Match in one table.

Payments

This tab displays information about your payments for sales and KU/KOLL activity for every month. It displays the Payment number, Sales period, Market place, Payment status, Date, Payment method, Net earning, FX rate of each currency and the Payout amount in one table. You might need to click the navigation buttons located below the table to navigate between different months.

Pre-orders

This tab displays units ordered for books you have made available for pre-order. You can only see data in this tab if you activated the pre-order option while setting up your book as explained earlier.

Promotions

This tab displays the performance of your Kindle Countdown Deals and five days free promotions. It displays the Market place where the promotion was ran, the book ASIN, Title, Promo Start, End time and Status in a table.

Prior Months' Royalties

This tab displays your royalties by month. It displays the Market place, Currency, eBook royalty, Paperback royalty, KU/KOLL and the Total Royalty in a single table. To see the royalties you earned in the different Amazon's market place, Select the month from the drop down menu list as shown in the screenshot below.
prior months royalty

Ad Campaigns

This tab displays the list of all amazon ads you have ran for your books. It requires that you must setup your Amazon Marketing Services account before you can run amazon ads for your kindle books.

Further Resources

Digital Marketing, SEO and Graphics Design Guides

Read Now!

I wrote a tutorial article on the 10 TESTED STRATEGIES FOR PROMOTING AND MARKETING YOUR EBOOKS TO INCREASE SALES. Check it out!

See Also: The Book Publishing and Book Printing Guide for CreateSpace here.

I know you have some suggestions or questions! I will be glad to here from you in the comment box below.

Also click Here to subscribe for free so that you will get our latest post and video updates in your email.

HOW TO FORMAT YOUR AMAZON & CREATESPACE BOOKS USING MICROSOFT WORD

Formatting your books properly helps to improve customer or buyer experience which eventually leads to good reviews and which in turn boosts your book's sales. No buyer will value a quality content book without proper formatting and editing. There are many word editing tools you can use to format and convert your books to the various formats that amazon and Createspace accept for their kindle and paperback books. You can use tools like caliber, kindlegen, Microsoft Word, etc. to format and convert your books to these required formats. I will give you a step by step guide with screenshots on how use MS Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016 and later versions to edit, format, proofread, insert header and footer texts, generate table of contents automatically and convert your kindle and paperback book interiors or manuscripts from docx to htm (for kindle ebook) and pdf (for paperback) file formats which are among the accepted book interior formats.
how to format your kindle and paperback books with mas word

Many Young Author ask:

How do you make a book on Microsoft Word?
How do I number pages in a book using Word?
How do you print a booklet in Word?
How do I make a booklet in Word for Mac?

This tutorial article provides answers to these questions.

Learn and Download Adobe Photoshop from Scratch and for free Here.

How to Utilize the CreateSpace Interior Templates

CreatesSpace, a subsidiary of Amazon which bases specially on the printing and distribution of your book's hard copy version has designed some interior templates for the various dimensions of your book's interior which is available in two forms: Formatted Templates which makes everything simple for novices and Basic Templates for those who want a very unique interior design. This form allows you format your book's interior to your taste. View and download the various interior createspace templates for basic and formatted samples on createspace forum.

10 TESTED STRATEGIES FOR PROMOTING AND MARKETING YOUR EBOOKS TO INCREASE SALES

Making huge sales and profits from book publishing has never been easy! There are some hidden secrets and tactics that you must comprehend and apply if you really want to make a huge sale from your books you published at any online store like Amazon and Createspace. You can publish and market your books in various formats like kindle, paperback and print book. Many amazon Authors don't know about Createspace which is a subsidiary of amazon.

Also, there are some mistakes you must avoid as an Author. Amazon is infact the largest online book store with billions of customers and millions of Authors. So to succeed as an Author is not a very easy task. But it can easier for you if you are shown these tactics behind amazon book publishing and marketing!

how to promote and market your ebooks to increase sales and earnings

Many new book Authors always ask the following questions:

How do you market your book on Amazon?
What is Amazon select?
What is a perma free book?
How do you market a book?
How do you market your book on Amazon?
How do you market your book?
What are the techniques of marketing?

I answered some of these questions in my previous article on The Simplified Guide For Setting Up And Selling Your Books Through Amazon and CreateSpace. I will answer the rest of the questions in this article!


SEE ALSO: HOW TO SET UP, SELF-PUBLISH & SELL YOUR BOOKS ON CREATESPACE.


There are many reasons why you should publish your book on amazon. I shared my reasons for choosing amazon as my book publishing platform out of other available publishing platforms.


My First Experience As an Author at Amazon was very bad because I started and learnt about Amazon marketing all by myself. I made a lot of mistakes which I will not allow any new Author that comes across my path to experience. That was what prompted me to write this article. It took me three weeks to make my first sale in my first book.

My sole aim in this article is to reveal all the strategies that I have been implementing in my books as an Author that yielded a positive result in terms of sales. 
You are very privileged to have come across this article!

Success Guidelines For Amazon And CreateSpace

Before you plunge into any business, it is always advisable that you first understand how the platform of the business works. This will help you adhere to the DO's and avoid the DON'Ts of the business. When I started publishing on amazon and createspace, I was not aware of most of these rules. Here are some some tips and guidelines that will help you succeed as an author in Amazon and CreateSpace.

You should first understand the gender and age range of a greater part of amazon and createspace customers. Women between the age of 30 to 50 years make up about 80% of the total population. Knowing this will help you to know the type and categories of books to write. Books in categories like: cookbooks and recipes, health, romance novels, computer tutorials, etc. sell well on the platform. Do not be tempted to write a book just because you know more about the book title. Research and discover books that sell well. I was once tempted to do this when I first started on amazon and createspace.

Ten Ebook Marketing and Promotion Guides for Every Self Publisher

The increase in the demand for ebooks also demands a lot of strategies in the part of the Author or publisher. This ten marketing guides have been tested and proven for any online book publishing platform especially Amazon and Createspace. Study each guide carefully!

1. Always Use A Professional Cover Design

Your cover design gives a potential buyer the first impression about the entire content of your book. Buyer can only make a move of looking into the content of your book only if your book cover tickled their fancy!

Your book cover speaks a lot about your book. That is the more reason why you should endeavour to use professional cover designs for your books no matter the platform you publish your book.


Here are some features of an un-recommended or unprofessional book cover design:
  • So many texts in the cover
  • Very Long Titles
  • Poor Background
  • Poor Colour Combination
  • Low Quality Images
My advice for you is that if you can't design well by yourself, hire an expert or first learn how to design professional ecovers and paperbacks. There are so many software you can use to design awesome ecovers for your books like Adobe Photoshop and InDesign. I prefer to use photoshop because am used to it. Learn and Download Adobe Photoshop from Scratch and for free Here.

In one of my tutorial articles I also explained how to design professional book covers using Canva online free design tool.

I can always help you design professional book covers both for your amazon Ebooks and your Paperback or Print book. If you need my book cover design services, just write to me through my email.


Here are the screenshots of some of my ecover designs:

Non fiction books:


screenshot 1: ecover design sample - Ms Access book

The book is available at amazon

Fiction book

screenshot 2: ecover design sample for fiction books

Recipes

screenshot 3: ecover design sample - Recipes

Also available at amazon

Another tutorial medium is youtube. It has all the video tutorials you need to become a photoshop professional.

2. Utilize both Amazon Kindle, Paperback and Createspace Print book Formats

Most times, Amazon frowns at Authors who publish their books in other online book stores. Amazon now has another book publishing platform called Createspace. This platform  is mainly for hard copies of books and they reach out to other book publishing platforms and infact this platform is not as strict as Amazon KDP when it comes to book review. 

The book publishing requirements of  Amazon Kdp and Createspace are very similar. I normally utilize this advantage whenever I publish a book at Amazon KDP in kindle and paper back format. All I do is to simply do a little reformatting of my book to meet Createspace book publishing standard and then submit it to Createspace for Publishing. With this strategy, all my books will now be available in kindle format, paperback format (at amazon kdp) and print book format (at Createspace). So which ever format of my book that my customers demand will be available. 

Another advantage is that when customers demand your book from other book platforms that your book is not available, they will be directed to Createspace. Some other book retailers like Kobo, Apple Barnes and Noble rent book from Createspace. This strategy boosts my monthly earnings from my books up to 50%.

3. Discover the Optimum Price that Produces the Highest Ebook Sales 

Tagging a very high or low price for your book is never the best strategy to increase your profit. Although a low price most times increases the number of sales, but there is a specific range of price that are optimum in the sense that they don't only yield more money or profit per book sale, they also increase the number of books you sell. Optimum price is that price that most buyers will consider very adequate and are willing to pay after weighing the content of your book or product.

This means that optimum prices for different categories of books vary. Normally, optimum price for fiction novels are lower (around $0.99 to $2.99) than that of non fiction books which is mostly around $3.99 to $4.99.


Another way to find the optimum price of a particular book category is to compare the prices offered by the first ten best sellers in that category. But this approach should be carried out wisely!


The highest mistake I made in my earlier book publishing stage at amazon and createspace was to set very high prices for my book. Then, I sell an average of one book per two days. After I discovered this, I reduced the price of my PowerPoint textbook from $18.99 to $12.99 and I sold ten books within two days! I did the same thing for the same book on amazon and sold 6 books per day!

Don't ever make this mistake! Instead, you should initially tag your book at a lower price for example around $0.99 to $2.99, then when the book has become very popular, you can increase the price between $3.99 to $4.99.

I further discussed this strategy in one of my articles on the step by step guides to setup and self publish your books in amazon and for CreateSpace.

4. Apply SEO and Market Research Properly Before You Publish Your Book

This strategy is where most Author make a lot of mistakes. Adequate Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is very important as it goes a long way to determine the amount of sales your book can generate and should even be carried out before you decide to write a book  in a particular category or even finalize on your book's title. Proper market research will help you find the most searched keyword to use and how to apply them in your book's title, sub title, description, etc.

Before you start writing your book or choose a topic to write on, make sure your book content and arrangement provides solution to the following challenges:


The best keyword that potential buyers will use when searching for your book or product.

The secret behind the success of some of your competitors.
What your competitors did not get right and how to put it right in your book.
What your potential buyers are looking for.

Only a proper SEO and market research can help you tackle these challenges properly. I recommend Merchant Word Keyword Research Tool for you. It shows you rank of each keyword by country and the categories they best fit in. It is not only used for amazon keyword research.


Your book title and sub title are very important because they are the first thing that a potential buyer will read when your book comes out from a search engine keyword search. There are two main ways to caption your book:

Short title strategy in which you use a total number of character not more than 80 and long title strategy in which you can use up to 200 characters. 

Both yield good result when the keyword placement is done properly. Always insert your main keywords before the 80th character count because most search engines truncate titles at the 80th character count. Most Authors use the short book title and sub title strategy. But I prefer the long book title it gives a clearer pre-description of your book even before an audience reads your book's description. If you wish to use this second method, avoid making it too long. Which ever method you intend to use, make sure that your keyword insertion sounds natural and do not jam pack them.


Another section you can add some of your keywords is in your book's description. Always construct an enticing description for your book because your book description is largely responsible for converting interested browsers into buyers of your book. There are two parts to your description: the first 3-4 lines that are always visible, and the rest of it that is only revealed if someone clicks the “Read More” link. 


Ensure you add your other main and minor keywords within the first 3 to 4 lines of your description. A greater percentage of your buyers never read more than the first 5 line before they make up their minds. Do not make your book description sound so persuasive. Just give your buyers many reasons and benefits why they should buy your product. Also use ball points to list the unique features in your book. Also tell your customers the problems that your book or product has solution to. Then use an adequate call to action to direct their next action!


Another point mist Authors get wrong is putting their books in tge wrong category. Amazon kdp allows you to choose a maximum of two categories for each book you publish. The easiest way to find the best two categories for your book is to search for similar highly selling books published by other authors and checking their categories. Your book's category can make a lot of differences especially in terms of getting to the right audience.

In summary, a professional book description or blurb should following sequence:

  • Hook (catches and hooks up your buyer's fancy)
  • Synopsis (for fiction books)
  • Problems your book solved and the outcome (mainly for non fiction books)
  • What qualifies You or moved you to Write the Book 
  • Unique Benefits and features in your book
  • Lastly, a Call to Action (very important)
Another optional aspect that can increase your book sales on the long run especially for fiction book writers. It helps your previous customers to locate the next book in that same series. For example the different episodes of a fiction novel should be in the same series for easy location.

5. Remind Your Customers to Leave a Review of your Book After Purchase

Books with many positive reviews rank high and as a result, attract more sales because very few people like to be the first one to something new. Everyone else wants to know what other people think of things first simply because they are afraid to risk their money in an uncertain item.The more reviews you can get for your book, the more you can give social proof that other people have bought, and hopefully liked, your book. And with that, it becomes easier to turn an interested visitor into a book buyer. Positive book reviews attract more customers because customers trust more on other people’s opinion than on classical company advertisement.

A good opportunity to get reviews for your book is during the free promotion period ehen you give out your books for free or on count down deal. Always remind your visitor to drop a review after purchase. 


A strategy that I always implement in my books is to remind my customers at the concluding part of my books. This will help those who might have forgotten to drop a review when they bought my book to do so! Try it out in the next book you release.

6. Utilize Your Book's Free Promotion Period: Use free give away sites

Here are a few popular sites where I nomally give away my new books for free:
Amazon gives you two promotional strategies or types for your book:
You either use Five free days which allows customers to download your book for free within these specified days or Seven Count down deal period during which your book selling price starts from a lesser amount until it reaches the actual price. During this promotion period, your book ranks high in the FREE BOOK category which helps your book ranking after the promotion period.

During this promotion periods, blast the amazon links to your book in different online platforms. An article at Adweek reveals the 15 Best Places to Promote Your Book for Free.

7. Utilize Relevant Facebook Pages, Groups and Twitter Handles, Ads and Other Social Media to Promote Your Books

Facebook and Twitter are the two most popular social media worldwide. Entrepreneurs now utilize these media to boost and promote their businesses. You can get and build your potential customers through these media. You can create a Facebook page or group for your book and even join Groups related to your book's category. You can also create a twitter handle and follow some popular Authors in your niche. This will help you locate your customers and as a result boost your sales in any online business especially in book marketing. Always design a professional banner for your facebook pages, groups and twitter handle.

I also discovered how powerful facebook, twitter ads and even google adword especially in the free promotion periods of your books on amazon. All you need to do is to use the right keywords.

In my previous posts, I revealed How to Create A Professional Facebook Page To Promote Your Business and How To Turn Your Facebook Page Into A Shopping Mall In 10 Minutes


An article at Michaelhyatt revealed How to Use Twitter to Promote Your New Book (or Other Product).


When it comes to Free Kindle promotions, there are tons of different Facebook groups and Twitter handles dedicated to featuring free books to their audience. These are perfect places to promote your book.


An article at Tckpublishing gave the List of Sites To Promote Your Free Amazon Kindle Books.


There other awesome social media that you can utilize, like LinkedIn, GoodReads, etc

8. Advertize Your Books Through Your Personal Blog and Submit Guest Posts

Amazon and other online book publishing platforms encourage Authors to create websites or blogs to promote their books. Creating a website or blog for your books is an effective, long term strategies to increase your book sales. Always make sure the website's niche is related to the category of the book you intend to promote through it. For example, if you wrote a cookbook, then you should create a blog where you give free food recipes and through which you can promote your cook book. The best way to increase sales is to offer freebies to your visitors!


You can create a blog easily with blogger or even wordpress. The main thjngs you need are a domain name and a hosting plan which are usually renewed annually. For a blogger blog, you only need a domain name because google provides hosting. You can buy a domain name (which costs around 10 to 15 dollars) and a hosting plan from Godaddy.com. There are other good hosting companies and domain registrars like hostgator.com, bluehost.com, etc.

The first page you’ll need in your website is a home page which can also be referred to as landing page because it’s likely to be where your visitors land when they first come to your site and therefore needs to be very professional and attractive. An article at leadpages.net reveals the five things you need to build a highly converting landing pageAnother important page to have on your website is your book sales page, where you tell your reader about your book and provide them the link to buy it.


Another powerful strategy is guest posting which entails writing a related article and publishing it on top blogs or websites. At the end of the article, you leave a link to your book on amazon. This may cost you some bucks but it worths it!

9. Build a Strong Subscriber and Email List

Another long term strategy to increase your book sales is to build or setup a very large and active subscriber and email list. An email list helps to develop your target audience. On your site, you should include a form that lets visitors sign up for your email newsletter. This helps you build your platform by collecting a list of subscribers from your target market. That target market consists of people who’ve already read your book and other people who would be interested in reading a book like yours.

Always bear in mind that you will need to offer them something in return for signing up to receive emails from you. You can offer a free version of your book.
With a large list of active subscribers, you can email them and tell them more about your book, as well as any future books you write. It can increase your earning up to 30% if properly used!

10. Experiment and Try Out New Strategies and Reward Your Early Audience

Experiment is the best way to find out new profitable strategies. Never be afraid to try out a new plan because "there is no harm in trial". It just requires consistency and time. Don't only base on your old ideas and knowledge. Try out something new until you see a positive change. Take your time to apply these ten tested strategies. It has been helping me and I strongly believe that it will also help you increase the number of sales you make on your books and you’ll start earning more money from your books.

Always reward your early and former audience who know, enjoy and support your work by giving them a great deal. These people are likely your blog readers, social media followers, email subscribers and friends. These are people who will give your book the first set of awesome reviews! When lots of people purchase your book at once, Amazon's algorithm picks up on your book and promotes it, exposing it to more potential buyers and helping your book to rank high very fast.

There are two ways to reward these people: 
1. By tagging your book at a lower price at the release date. 
2. By setting up and giving out coupon codes for your book, about 10% to 20% off the price of your book.

There are other strategies you can check out. Noah Kagan shared the Ten Marketing Tactics He Uses To Boost His Amazon Book Sales.

Conclusion: 

Here is a breakdown of the strategies to increase your book sales:
  • Always Use A Professional Cover Design
  • Utilize both Amazon Kindle, Paperback and Createspace Print book Formats
  • Discover the Optimum Price that Produces the Highest Ebook Sales
  • Apply SEO and Market Research Properly Before You Publish Your Book
  • Remind Your Customers to Leave a Review of your Book After Purchase
  • Utilize Your Book's Free Promotion Period: Use free give away sites
  • Utilize Relevant Facebook Pages, Groups and Twitter Handles, Ads and Other Social Media to Promote Your Books
  • Advertize Your Books Through Your Personal Blog and Submit Guest Posts
  • Build a Strong Subscriber and Email List
  • Experiment and Try Out New Strategies
Implement them and tell me your experience. I will like to here from you in the comment box below.

Further Resources

Digital Marketing, SEO and Graphics Design Guides

Read Now!

SEE: HOW TO SETUP & ADVERTISE YOUR KDP BOOKS & UNDERSTAND YOUR SALE REPORTS

SEE ALSO: HOW TO OPTIMIZE YOUR AMAZON BOOKS & PRODUCTS RANKING FOR SEARCH ENGINES

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