Do you have an author website? As the world looks at ways to slowly reopen, there will still be another few months of more people spending more time at home. Big festivals for the summer have all been cancelled - even Oktoberfest in Germany has been cancelled this year. With all of that extra downtime, we anticipate ebook sales will continue to rise, so if you're an author or publisher, now is the time to make sure your ebook marketing is reaching as many people as possible. An author website is a crucial marketing piece that sometimes gets overlooked.
Elements of a Good Author Website
Designing a website to sell books doesn't mean it has to be an aggressive sales page. In fact, some of the best ways to sell your ebook are through more subtle mentions. The elements of a good author website include:
- A landing page or home page
- An author bio or about page
- A book page - this may be for a single book, a series, or for the author's complete library of titles
- A blog
- A news/press page
Other elements you may want to include, depending on your goals, is a speaker or booking page, if you're trying to land speaking gigs or get booked for events (virtual events, too). If you do participate in events, such as author Q&As, media interviews, and more, you may also want an event page that updates your readers and fans about when and where to find you.
Selling Your eBook without In-Your-Face Marketing
When someone lands on your website, it's because they are already curious about you or your books. Instead of hitting them over the head with annoying popups and begs to buy the book, instead delight them with something readers of your books would love to see. Consider these tips
Know Your Audience and Readers
You need to know who your audience is. A great example of understanding the audience is Meagan McDonald's Judy Moody website. Another quite different example is Mark Tufo.
Easy Navigation and Book Visibility
Visitors to your website shouldn't have to hunt for your books. Have a look at the website for Chimamanda Adichie. It's clean and simple and easy to find everything. While you don't need to have a new popup every five minutes asking them to "click here to buy," you should make it clear where to find the books and how to get them. A great example of clear and simple navigation is Gretchin Rubin's website.
Put It All Out There
Whether you do it like David Sedaris and put a lot of information on the home page, promote an upcoming book like Jennifer Weiner, or create an entire world for your readers like JK Rowling, the idea is to make it fun for your potential book buyers to be on - and stay on - your site.
Let Them Buy the Books from You
Make it easy to sell more ebooks from your author website by selling your books there. Accept multiple forms of payment through secure third-party payment platforms like PayPal, secure your ebooks with DRM to protect your intellectual property, and keep more of the profits.
Your author website should be a glimpse into your personality and your books. It should give your readers a better sense of who you are and why your books are worth reading. A better author website can help you sell more ebooks.