A comprehensive guide to promoting your self-published text book

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The indie author’s guide to promoting and selling your text book online

10 ways to increase book sales on your website.

Writing a book is tough. You’ve devoted years to planning and research. You’ve been disciplined about your 1000+ words a day. Perhaps you’ve hired a private editor and proofreader, and a book designer. You’re incredibly proud of the result!

But now comes the hard part – getting seen. Indie Book authors – here’s the sad truth. Amazon won’t do anything to promote your book.

In the competitive world of book promotion, leveraging your own website is a powerful strategy. You own it, you control it. If you’re looking to boost sales and build a dedicated, long-term fan base for your textbook, here are some effective tips.

1. Create an engaging Author hub

Your professional, user-friendly website is your central hub. Don’t wait for your book to be finished – start NOW!

All you need to start is a landing page with an “About the Author” section, a signup, and why they should buy. (See my Website-in-a-Box offer for under $1 000!)

Optimize your online hub for both desktop and mobile users, and make sure your content can be indexed by search engines to improve its visibility. Book your domain, and have a matching email address so people remember it!

2. Start a Blog

Create a blog where you regularly share insightful content related to your textbook’s subject matter. This not only attracts more visitors but also positions you as an authority in your field. Share tips, case studies, and interesting anecdotes that tie back to your textbook. Get your SEO right, and see Point 4. on how to boost web traffic!

  • My best free WordPress DIY Plugin for this: SEOPress

3. Offer Exclusive Content

Encourage visitors to your website by offering exclusive content related to your textbook. This could be sample chapters, supplementary materials, or even a downloadable study guide. Make sure to capture their email addresses so you can connect proactively with promotions once the book is published.

4. Harness the Power of Social Media

Promote your blog articles on the platforms most appropriate to YOUR readers.  Share engaging snippets, testimonials, and behind-the-scenes content to generate buzz. Connect with your audience and direct them to your website to engage further. But don’t use social media to procrastinate, get that book finished!

Once you’re published, you don’t want to chase individual sales on social media. Gather email addresses so that when you add content, you can automatically keep your fans informed.

  • My best WordPress DIY Plugin for this: Hustle

5. Create a Quiz

Harness the educational and instructional nature of your text book. A quiz will appeal to people who love to show off their knowledge about your topic.

  • My best free WordPress DIY Plugin for this: Forminator.

6. Link to user reviews and testimonials

Putting testimonials on your website doesn’t usually build credibility because they are so easy to fake. But you CAN share real testimonials that are on trusted platforms like LinkedIn. Consider reaching out to industry experts for endorsements. Authentic feedback adds credibility to your work. Build testimonials into every blog with case studies.

  • My  best free WordPress DIY Plugin for this: WP Reviews (Trustindex)

7. Host virtual or physical events, webinars and “lunch-and-learns”

Thank goodness for Zoom. Engage with your audience through virtual events, workshops and webinars. Don’t keep to your region – look at other countries.  Identify suitable associations, corporates or colleges, and offer them a free, in-person “lunch-and-learn” or lecture. Speak at your local library or community centre.

Offer valuable insights related to your textbook’s subject matter. This not only promotes your book but also establishes a direct connection with future buyers and readers.

8. Build a subscription membership

If you plan more than one book, it is worth expanding your website with memberships. For a small monthly amount offer the opportunity to:

  1. Read / download chapters of your book (reducing your print costs).
  2. Read additional chapters on advanced topics.
  3. Access research or case studies.
  4. Take part in research, and submit their work or case study for your next book.
  5. Access videos and audio podcasts.
  6. Connect and network with each other, and you.

9. Offer an online course

Turning your textbook into an online course is a fantastic way to reach a broader audience and provide a more exciting interactive learning experience. If you have a professional association, perhaps you could include CPD points.

  • My best free WordPress DIY Plugin for this: LifterLMS

10. Provide Purchase Options

A growing number of people don’t like supporting Amazon. Streamline the purchase process and keep people on your website by leveraging Stripe and PayPal. It’s easier than it seems!

Diversifying your sales beyond Amazon allows you to build a more direct connection with your audience and control your book’s narrative. And saves you all those fees, rules and risk.

  • My best free WordPress DIY Plugin for this: Woocommerce
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