According to Pays To Publish founder Dane McBeth, you sure can. He’s made multiple six figures using Amazon’s KDP (or Kindle Direct Publishing) platform, and he’s taught hundreds of others how to do the same. Matter fact, in a minute, I’ll tell you his secret to making five to ten Gs a month self-publishing eBooks on Amazon/Kindle. But first, what about the flip side? What are the negatives, the risks? Like, why shouldn’t you pursue this business model? Scroll down, I’ll tell you.
One, it’s not nearly as passive as the gurus make it sound. Back in the day, maybe, but not anymore. Now it’s way more competitive and Amazon’s algorithm is way more advanced. They’re only gonna reward the authors who perform well, consistently. Don’t think you’re just gonna outsource one crappy eBook, upload it to KDP, hit publish, and sit back and collect royalties every month. You’ll drown in the sea of eBooks that are actually worth a damn.
Two, even good books you’ll have to promote. The gurus like to make it sound like Amazon will just hook you up with sales all day long, but again, those days are over. If you want them to send any buyers your way, you have to build your own momentum first. Have friends and family buy your book, build up a social media following and tell your followers about it, run paid ads, and then beg everyone for five star reviews, right? Then maybe Amazon will show you some love.
Three, Amazon’s house, Amazon’s rules. They like your eBooks priced anywhere from ninety-nine cents to ten bucks. So right there, you’re pressured to price your book stupid cheap, and then Amazon takes a huge bite outta your profit. Worse, they can ban you if you accidentally violate any of the fine print you definitely didn’t read when you signed up. But even if you did (weirdo), they’re notorious for changing the rules whenever they feel like it.
If I haven’t scared you off, and you’re still considering Amazon self-publishing, here’s how Dane says to get to five to ten K per month with it. First and foremost, you gotta understand, the secret is there is no secret. There’s no Amazon algorithm loophole, no magical keyword you can stuff in your book title to rank higher, no little-known PPC strategy that’ll get ya cheaper clicks. And certainly no super duper in-demand book topic that somehow millions of other self-publishers don’t know about, okay?
So just accept, this is gonna be hard, it’s gonna take work. Crazy concept, right? That, in order to make good money as a self-publisher, you’ll actually need a good book, in a good niche, with a good title, and a good description, and good marketing, and good reviews, huh? Trying to pump sales into a low quality book doesn’t work. You’ll get exposed, you’ll get lit up in the review section, Amazon will take notice and it’ll be really hard to make organic sales going forward.
“There’s no get rich quick in self-publishing or any online business for that matter,” Dane says. “And I know these aren’t the words that you wanna hear, but they’re the ones that you need to hear. It all boils down to a solid foundation. If not, if you have a low quality book, you’ll get bad reviews, it’ll fizzle out, and you’ll get no more sales. It’s gonna die out. That’s not a long-term business. You need to think long-term if you wanna make good money self-publishing on Amazon.”