Made It to the Bestseller List in 24 Hours

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How my ebook became a bestseller in just 24-hours

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Published on Medium 

Recently I published an ebook on Amazon and after just 24 hours after publishing it, it hit the Top 100 Bestsellers in its’ category (three categories in fact, but more on that in a moment). The ebook held on the top 100 bestseller lists for several days, long enough for me to market it and make my first sales.

Writing a short-form ebook, the kind I specialize in, is a fairly simple way for business owners to build credibility, share their knowledge with their customers, and tell their story.

What is a short form ebook and why do you want to write one? A short-form ebook is one that is typically one that contains a total of 7,000–15,000 words and can be read in under one hour. It is a book with a concise focus that offers specific information to the reader.

Authors use short-form ebooks as a fairly easy way to achieve their goals. The benefits of this type of ebook for an author include that they require shorter writing and editing time and have an overall lower cost to produce. They are also a perfect entry into the process of book writing for the aspiring author.

Creating these ebooks can be accomplished in a few simple steps. Many entrepreneurs find that they are able to develop these ebooks with little outside help, or if assistance is needed, the costs to production remain relatively low.

Why does the bestseller list matter for your ebook? This may feel like an obvious question for the newly published ebook author. The most direct answer is that you want your ebook to be a bestseller to help it to stand out from the crowd in a busy marketplace. in addition, the designation gives the work its own credibility.

Booksellers like Amazon will also highlight ebooks that are selling well. When a book or ebook makes it to the bestseller list, Amazon (and others) is more likely to recommend your ebook to those searching in your topic. When that happens, your sales improve. This, in turn, leads to a higher ranking on the results page of a search. It’s a “magic” way to promote your ebook, and your business.


As I mentioned above, there are a few simple steps to creating short-form ebooks, publishing them, and bringing them to the bestseller list. Here is how I was able to bring my ebook to the Amazon Top 100 Bestseller list in just 24 hours:

  1. Write on a topic that interests you, and more importantly interests your reader. Short-form ebooks are a great way to tell your story. Because they are short and focused, you can offer your knowledge to your reader in easily digestible ways. Success in selling an ebook though comes when you choose a topic that is of interest to your readers. To find out what your readers are interested in, consider spending time on researching search trends. Marketers think of this as finding the pain point of your customer and solving it. In ebook topic terms, you can use keyword search tools like Google Trends or others to identify exactly what your reader is seeking online, and then create your ebook around a solution to their “problem.”
  2. Choose the categories for your ebook wisely. This is the most important step! “Categories” is the term that Amazon uses to define how it sorts your ebook once it is published. It is like the old Dewey Decimal System but in a digital form. There are many software tools that you can use to speed your search for the best categories, or you can spend time researching the best ones for your ebook. Choosing a category for your ebook that is both appropriate and small enough that you can rise to the top in sales rankings relatively easy, is the fastest way to get your ebook to the bestseller charts. Before you publish your ebook, spend the time you need to learn about category selection. This will make the difference in how quickly (or if) your ebook is a bestseller. You should also note here that you can choose 3 categories when you publish on Amazon, making it important to find the categories that your readers will search to find your book. Learn more about this, and tips on how to attach even more categories to your ebook, in my recent ebook.
  3. Write a description of your ebook that will entice viewers to want to read it. When a potential reader of your ebook finds it on Amazon (or the bookseller of your choice), the first introduction that they have to your book is the description. Many authors struggle to write the description because this type of copy, typically used for marketing and sales, is foreign to them. To overcome this, it is best to write a first draft description of your ebook, then finalizing it by adding descriptive or enticing words that add excitement to your final draft. It also often helps to take a look at the descriptions of other books that you have enjoyed. This simple step gives you insight into what works for ebook descriptions.
  4. Create an attractive cover. Humans are visual creatures. We are attracted to book covers for a variety of reasons, though there are some patterns that you can follow. If you decide to create your own cover, take a look at other books in your topic area, and pay attention to the covers. Then, consider the tone and theme of your ebook. The cover must be designed so that the potential buyer can tell the story, theme, and tone of your ebook, even without reading a word. As covers are important to the sales of your ebook, if you are not adept at visual software (think Canva or Adobe), you may want to reach out to your graphic designer for help.
  5. Tell everyone! Marketing your ebook increases your chance to make the bestseller list. Lastly, it is the marketing that will take you over the “hump” to bestseller status quickly. Once you complete all of the previous steps and publish your ebook, it is time to tell everyone you know about it. Ask your friends and family to search for your ebook and open the preview. Then share your new accomplishment on social media and to your email lists. This is the time to “toot your own horn.” Amazon updates the bestseller charts hourly, so consider choosing a launch date to share with your friends, family, social, contacts, and lists. Encourage people to buy the ebook on the same day. This will help you “win” a category and get your ebook to the bestseller charts.

When I published my ebook, I knew that I wanted it to be a bestseller as soon as possible. That is why I followed these exact steps, and just 24 hours later it hit the charts. This led to sales for me, and it can for you as well.

Happy writing!

 

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Pam Parker Foley

Pam Parker Foley

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