Quick Link: How to Sell More Books with Great Book Cover Design

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You can have the best story in the world, but if your cover isn’t good not many people will pick it up. So it should come as no surprise that I agree with at The Creative Penn that investing in a fabulous cover is a must. In one of my paying jobs, I see a lot of covers that should have never made it to Amazon. What is your best tip for getting a great cover?

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How to Sell More Books with Great Book Cover Design

Investing in professional book cover design is non-negotiable for indie authors who want to make a living with their writing. Readers DO judge a book by its cover, and they won’t read your blurb, download a sample or buy now without connecting to your cover somehow.  In short, you’re unlikely to sell many books unless you have a great cover design.

In this article, JD Smith outlines her tips for book cover design. Her new book is The Importance of Book Cover Design and Formatting for Self-Published Authors. Jane is also my book cover designer and I highly recommend her.


There’s a constant debate about the relevance and importance of cover design, whether you’re a self-published author, part of a collective group of authors, an independent press, or even a large publishing house. If you are publishing your book to give away as Christmas presents, or you only expect a few members of your family to buy them, then the cover is as important as you consider it to be.

But if you are a professional writer and you intend to earn a living or be taken seriously in the literary world, then the book cover is as important as the copy editing, the proofreading, the story and the characters.

It is a part of your marketing … and it’s there to attract the right kind of readers.

So let’s assume you already deem a book cover to be important and I don’t need to convert you. How can you make your cover work for you and sell more books?

(1) Target your audience

Your book cover MUST be targeted at the right audience. How do you find out who that audience is?


Check out the bestselling lists in your genre, whether that’s crime fiction, women’s fiction, young adult etc. Pick out books by authors who you feel write similarly to you, whose readers you know will enjoy the genre you write in, your style, tone, characters.

This is really important. Do you write like Mark Billingham? Then you want to attract his fans. Do you write like Philippa Gregory? Then you want to attract her fans. That’s not to say you want to copy their covers, but you need to have a similar feel, and to present your book with visual clues that scream ‘you enjoyed this bestselling author’s book so you’ll enjoy mine’.

Read the full post on The Creative Penn

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