How to Write an Ebook, and Make Money

Do you have a great idea for an ebook but don't know where to start? Writing an ebook can be very exciting, and there is potential for big rewards for both satisfaction and money. By providing tailored advice and resources, this blog post will give you the confidence to write your own e-book so that it stands out from the crowd.

Woman learning how to write an ebook and make money.
How to Write an Ebook, and Make Money 8

We'll cover everything from getting started writing, building up ideas, designing a cover page and ultimately marketing your book to make money!

What is an Ebook?

An ebook, short for electronic book, is a digital version of a printed book that can be accessed on digital readers such as tablets, smartphones, and computers. Unlike traditional books, ebooks can be downloaded and read instantly without waiting for shipping, making them a convenient option for avid readers or students.

With the rise of the digital age, ebooks have become increasingly popular, providing readers with a lightweight, portable and always-available reading option. They come in various formats, including PDF, MOBI, and EPUB, and many publishers and authors offer them for sale on online platforms like Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Ebooks have also opened up new opportunities for self-publishing and have made it easier for writers to share their work with larger audiences.

What Ebooks Sell Best?

Amongst the different genres, few have consistently topped the charts on Amazon.

  • Firstly, religion and spirituality books cater to many readers, offering insights into religious beliefs, practices, and theories.
  • Secondly, biographies and memoirs give readers a peek into the lives of people who have left an indelible mark on the world.
  • Thirdly, business and money books offer practical advice on building wealth and managing finances.
  • Fourthly, self-help books provide guidance on mental well-being, self-improvement, and personal development.
  • Lastly, cookbooks, food, and wine enable foodies to try new recipes and experiment with cuisines in their kitchens.
Chart of ebook sales in the U.S.
How to Write an Ebook, and Make Money 9

Are Ebooks a Good Way to Earn Passive Income?

Passive income is an elusive and highly sought-after source of income that has recently gained prominence. And for good reason. Who wouldn't want to earn passive income and work less? One way to achieve this is through an ebook or digital product.

They make a fantastic addition to any passive income strategy because they can sell themselves once created, marketed, and shared. But don't be fooled; writing valuable content and building a strong brand to ensure your ebook's success takes time, effort, and patience.

However, if your content is evergreen, and you keep promoting and updating it, your ebook can potentially generate revenue for a long time. Therefore, it's safe to say that ebooks are a highly effective tool for creating a consistent stream of passive income.

How Much Money Can I Make Writing an Ebook?

Self-publishing has become an increasingly popular option for authors, allowing them to share their work with the world without needing traditional publishing houses.

However, the reality is that most self-published books will sell around 250 copies. While this may seem discouraging, it's important to note that there are success stories. Over 1,000 self-published authors made $100,000 last year through Amazon alone. On the other end of the spectrum, approximately one-third of self-published authors make less than $500 per year.

So, how can you increase your chances of success?

One potential strategy is to keep your investment low, minimizing the risk of a financial loss if sales are slow. Many successful ebook authors keep their books short, providing efficient and easily digestible content.

Some outsource their cover art or content creation to save time and energy. While self-publishing an ebook can be daunting, with the right approach and a bit of luck, you, too, could join the ranks of the few, earning big profits.

21 day money finder
How to Write an Ebook, and Make Money 10

Want $2,000?

Join the Free 21-Day Money Finder Challenge. I'll show you step-by-step how the average person finds $2,000 or more!

How Long Does it Take to Write an Ebook?

While every project is unique, and there's no hard and fast rule, most ebook projects take around two months from start to finish. This includes time for:

  • planning
  • research
  • writing
  • editing
  • formatting.

Remember that this timeframe can vary depending on factors such as the length of your ebook, how much time you can commit to the project each day, and any unexpected roadblocks that may come up along the way.

However, with a clear plan and dedication, you can certainly complete your ebook within a reasonable timeframe.

How To Write An Ebook and Make Money ( A Step-By-Step Guide)

Writing an ebook is an excellent way to share your knowledge and passion with the world while making money on the side. However, it's important to approach the task with a clear plan of action.

Step 1: Decide On an Ebook Idea or Topic

This first step is probably the most challenging and the most fun when writing an eBook. A niche will decide what you’ll be writing and for whom.

The problem many new eBook authors make is picking an idea without considering their audience. Be strategic about the topic you choose. Pick a subject you know inside out.

eBooks that solve problems sell more. Don’t decide to create a “working out guide” or “keto diet hacks” eBook just because you think the “hot topics” will pay off instantly. While the topics seem like rewarding possibilities, the market may be saturated.

You will need to either interview experts or do tons of research to curate new content in such niches. Hence, be precise about your niche, trim it down and let it be as targeted as possible.

For instance, if your eBook is about making money online, be specific, is it for stay-at-home moms or college students? You can start by listing all the topics you feel you could write an eBook about and pick the one that excites you most.

Pro Tip: To create empathy with your readers, consider sharing a personal story or experience.

It could be something most readers ask you for advice with, a unique life experience you've recently had or something you dedicate your time and energy researching.

How to Find Ideas for Your Own Ebook

Need help coming up with an idea? Hubspot has a blog ideas generator that could help flow your creative juices.

Get creative and expand on something you've already done. If you have a blog, review your posts and scrutinize the posts that get the most shares or comments.

Addressing or solving your audience’s problems can help increase your opt-ins or sales. When you are done researching, develop a fascinating title for your eBook.

Ensure your prospective title is not already taken. Generating a title for your eBook can either make or break your sales. Fortunately, various online tools help you create a killer title.

Ebook author doing research for her own ebook in a library.
How to Write an Ebook, and Make Money 11

Step 2: Do Extensive Research on Your Ebook Topic

However well you know your niche, it pays to do research. Give your audience new and interesting information they can’t get anywhere else. To avoid getting stuck at the research stage, allocate your time carefully.

You will need time to review books, articles and other resources to jot down references, statistics and great quotes. You can get more information or insights by reading similar eBooks; don’t be over-reliant on articles and blog posts.

Pro Tip: Adding block quotes and images can create a more interesting and informative eBook.

Set the length of your eBook. Remember that an eBook doesn’t have to be hundreds of pages long. There are plenty of successful eBooks out there with less than 4,000 words. When you include images, ensure they are high-quality and beware of copyright laws.

Several websites like PicJumbo, Depositphotos, and Unsplash offer free stock images. If you are great at photography, you can use a DSLR camera to snap your photos.

Woman writing ebooks from home.
How to Write an Ebook, and Make Money 12

Step 3: Write Your eBook

Plan your eBook before you begin writing it. Having a clear outline will help you to write an eBook faster. Include a compelling title for each chapter and subsequent subheadings.

Don’t forget to include a well-formatted table of contents, acknowledgment and a short bio about the author. Use tools like Evernote, Google Docs, Microsoft Word, and writing software to build momentum and enhance productivity.

The answer to how to write an eBook successfully is writing simply and clearly. Make your eBook readable so your target audience can easily digest the information you give them.

Pro Tip: Remember to keep the introduction short and fun, some authors overlook the importance of first impressions.

Use simple fonts and keep your formatting consistent. Double-check facts and statistics to avoid giving your readers misleading data. When you are ready to get down to business, create a distraction-free environment and set deadlines for yourself.

Log out of Facebook, turn off your phone and eliminate anything else distracting you. Remember to edit and proofread your work when you are done writing.

Proofreading will enable you to correct errors like grammar mistakes, spelling errors, broken hyperlinks, missing hyphens, and wrongly captioned images. Grammarly is a free browser extension that you can use for editing.

If you can afford to pay for a full edit, go for it. You can alternatively seek editing help from your fellow bloggers or readers. Be ready to repay the favor.

Step 4: Create Your Ebook Cover Design

Most of us tend to emphasize the writing process and forget about the cover. First impressions matter; creating an attention-grabbing ebook cover will give you an edge.

Your ebook cover should give your audience a taste of what to expect. Designing a compelling front cover can consume a lot of time and money if you are a beginner.

Programs like Adobe Spark’s Book Cover Maker and Canvas Free Online Book Cover Maker can help you create an appealing cover and not spend money.

We can’t be good at everything, though. If you are short on ideas or you're not very good at graphic design, there is no shame in hiring an experienced graphic designer.

Pro Tip: You can get inspiration from covers of the best eBooks published in a similar niche if you have no idea where to start designing a cover for yours.

If you’re working on a tight budget, you can get a freelance designer on Fiverr for just $5 instead of creating an amateurish-looking front cover.

The designer can incorporate your ideas to create a professional design that captures your content. Once you have a professional-looking front cover, you'll want to use the image for advertising your book in a blog post or a landing page.

Man making money selling ebooks.
How to Write an Ebook, and Make Money 13

Step 5: Publish, Promote and Sell Ebooks

Creating well-written books is half the work; the other half is about publishing, marketing strategies, and selling them to your target audience.

When you decide to create an eBook, you’re no longer just a writer but also a publisher.

The best thing about eBooks is that you don’t need a publishing company or a literary agent to publish them. After publishing, you’d like to earn passive income from your eBook.

There are several options to make money selling eBooks. You can self-publish and sell it on your website or some of the others listed below in PDF, .epub, iBook or .mobi formats.

Your Own Website

Selling your work from your own website directly has many perks. For starters, you will have control of your sales. You will additionally be better positioned to increase credibility and build engagement with your audience.

WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin that you can use to sell digital products on your site, it’s free, attractive, and easy to use.

Kindle Direct Publishing

When you choose the Amazon route, Kindle Direct will offer you some selling options that will help you promote your eBook. Publishing takes 5 minutes, and your book will appear in the store in 24 to 48 hours.

Set your own price and earn up to 70% of sales. You maintain control of your book rights and can change the book at any time.

Apple Books

iBooks Author is a free app that you can use to create and publish ebooks. The tools in the app enable you to add artwork and metadata to a book.

You can export the EPUB file you created in a different program to iBooks Author and sell them on Apple Books.

Send Owl

Use Send Owl to sell your digital products with ease. Use the built-in affiliate program, mailing list integration, advanced analytics, and pdf protection to boost and track sales. You will pay a monthly fee to use Send Owl's services.

Final Thoughts on Making Money Selling Ebooks

After publishing, it is time to inform the world about your eBook. To drive sales, promote your book everywhere. You can use your website, social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest) and guest posts.

Consider giving a few copies of your eBook to influencers and fellow bloggers in your niche and ask them to share it with their readers/followers to generate a buzz and get reviews.

Track your sales routinely to gauge how your eBook is performing; a good way to do this is to create a landing page on your website. Make your ebook available for download through a landing page, a web page that promotes/describes your book.

Pro Tip: Spend some time doing some research to make sure you price your book competitively.

We all have passions and areas of expertise. Whether it is fitness, nutrition, art, music or writing, some individuals appreciate your knowledge and want to learn more.

Writing and selling eBooks requires patience and determination, but it’s the most effective way of monetizing your passions and skills.

Your first ebook can be a learning experience. If your first book doesn't take off, don’t worry. Use the things you learn by writing your first book to improve the next book.

Most writers make several attempts before finding what works for them.

The only thing writing a failed ebook will cost
is time, but you will gain knowledge.  Very few passive income opportunities allow you to avoid startup costs.

If writing isn't your strong point, try creating YouTube videos to generate passive income.

eBooks can be life-changing; take advantage of this guide and write yours today! Are there any other tips or resources for how to write an eBook not covered in this article?

I would love to hear your suggestions in the comments section below.