When you sit down and really think about it, there are a lot of different ways that you can make money online. These range from selling physical products, blogging, affiliate marketing, running ads, you name it! There is an endless opportunity!
However, none of these things above is as easy as what I am going to teach you how to do today: selling books on Amazon without writing ANY words!
It sounds crazy I know, but every day hundreds of thousands of books are sold on Amazon that is what is called low or no content books. This takes advantage of something called POD or print on demand. This means that whenever you have a product, you make a sale FIRST, and then after you do, it gets printed and shipped to the customer.
As an entrepreneur, this should automatically start sounding like something that is not that hard, and sounds like it might be a way to bring in easy money. There is zero need to hold any product yourself, you make a sale first so you do not need to spend anything on inventory and best of all, we are going to sell these products on the biggest online market place in the world: Amazon.
Let’s jump into how all of this works and how you can get started within 10 minutes of finishing this guide.
(In-Depth) How To Start A Publishing Company Selling Low Content Books On KDP
What Is Kindle Direct Publishing?
Kindle Direct Publishing, better known as KDP is a way for authors to self publish a book on Amazon for the world to purchase. If you are an author, there are generally two ways you would go about getting your book in the hands of customers.
The first is the traditional way where you would go and get a publishing house to edit and publish your books, taking a large cut of your revenue and giving them the majority of control. The second is called self-publishing, where you will find someplace to publish your book yourself. This is exactly what the KDP platform is, a way for authors to self publish their books, and sell to millions of customers that are already on Amazon.
Before KDP, if you wanted to self publish a book, you would use a company called Createspace which would allow you to produce paperback books. Amazon ended up taking Createspace and building it into the KDP platform. This allows you to upload a few things:
- Book cover
- Interior file
…and publish this book for sale on Amazon. Whenever someone purchases it, AMAZON will then print it, ship it to the customer, and deal with any and all customer service.
You simply sit back and collect what is known as a royalty for each product that you sell!
Why Sell No Content Books On KDP?
Alright, so you know where we are going to be selling these books, but WHY should we sell on Amazon and through the KDP platform?
That one is easy. Amazon controls almost half of the market in the United States alone for printed books. They build their company on selling books, and there are a LOT of customers out there that are willing to purchase (making you money).
The best part about all of this is that you can start and get into it even if you are NOT an author. That is the entire point of the low content.
When we say low content books, think of books that have a cover (of course every book will have a front and back cover), but the interior is blank or close to blank.
…you name it, the list goes on and on! When we use KDP, we can simply create a catchy looking cover, use a PDF interior (which I will show you), and sell them to all of the customers that are on Amazon.
KDP offers a ton of benefits that other platforms do not offer.
- No barrier to entry
- No upload limits
- No sales minimums
- No removal periods
And just a really clean and simple to use backend.
Starting Your Publishing Company
All of these are important, but one of the most important is probably research. We have to figure out what people WANT to buy on Amazon so that we can offer them products that will put money in our pockets.
Let’s work our way down this list!
A KDP Account
Before we can even begin, you will want to get yourself a KDP account. These accounts are 100% free to get, are from Amazon, and will not expire. I would suggest if you are just starting to put this account under a new email so that you can keep all of your businesses separate.
You can get a KDP account here: https://kdp.amazon.com/
When you get logged in, you will then want to click on the name you see in the upper right-hand corner because you will need to fill out some information before you can begin uploading your first book.
They will want you to fill out the information about yourself such as your author/publisher information, how you will get paid, and a quick tax interview.
For the author and publisher’s information, make sure to put in your country, full name, phone number, and address. Make sure this is real information because if not, there is no way for you to collect your money.
Second, fill in your payment information. You will want to enter your bank account numbers so that Kindle Direct Publishing can simply deposit these funds directly into your account when you earn royalties. After a while, you will start getting monthly deposits and it feels pretty good earning these and seeing the emails come in on autopilot.
Next, all you have to do to finish up is to take the Amazon tax interview. They will ask you some simple questions and once those are completed you will need to sign the document.
That’s it, you should now have a brand new KDP account that you can start using to make money!
Book Cover Designs
Once you have your KDP account, the next thing you need is some designs that you will put on the cover of your books.
These can be ANYTHING you want. They can be text only, funny sayings/phrases, or actual artwork. This is really up to you.
However, if you are brand new and just starting, you will need to make sure all of your designs are in the proper dimensions that KDP accepts in order for the files to be uploaded properly.
If you have Photoshop or another design tool, feel free to use those. Today though, we are going to go over a cheaper, and much easier tool that you can use to create these book covers with a few clicks and dragging and dropping. This makes the entire process MUCH less painful and actually pretty easy.
Let’s jump into the Book Bolt Designer.
To use this, you will first want to grab yourself a Book Bolt account (take the free trial here), and log into the software.
From there, click on the drop-down menu from the upper right-hand corner and click the Book Bolt Designer:
This will open up a page where you can pick some different options that look like this:
The first thing you will want to do is select the size of the book that you want to create from the drop-down menu. The designer can create both covers and interiors, but right now, let’s focus on covers.
I usually select 6X9 because that is one of the most popular book sizes on Amazon. There are 16 different sizes of books that you can create. So if you have a single cover design, you could turn that into 16 products that would be for sale on Amazon!
After you select the size, you will want to select the page count. I usually select 100-120 pages. Whatever you pick will affect how big your book cover becomes because the more pages that have to fit inside, the bigger the spine of your book will become. The Book Bolt designer handles all of this for you.
After you click on submit, this will build out your cover template and you can then begin using the drag and drop tools to create yourself a cover.
For example, I made a black background, uploaded some work via the images tab, and BAM, I now have a book cover.
You can then go to the top menu and click on the download button. This will download the cover as a PDF which we will use to upload to Amazon in a bit.
Low Content KDP Book Interiors
Now that we have our cover PDF ready to go, we now need to get something to put INSIDE the book.
Remember I said that you did not have to have any writing experience or be an author to do this?
Yep, I mean it!
You can either create your own PDF interiors, OR you can do what I do, which is much easier.
Use the interiors that Book Bolt gives you!
If you head to the homepage of Book Bolt and click on the resources tab, you will be able to get to the interior wizard.
You can also just click here to get to that: https://designer.bookbolt.io/interior-generator.php.
The interior wizard currently supports OVER 100 different interiors that you can download and use 100% FREE.
The way it works is that you find an interior that you want to put in your book. Once you have found something you like, simply click on it, and then fill out the information above such as bleed or no bleed, size, and page count.
I always select bleed. Then for the size of the book and the page count, these MUST match what you selected for your cover:
When everything looks good, click on download and it will download that interior as a PDF file which you would then upload to KDP.
KDP Low Content Book Research
Okay, so we have the current framework of how to get all the pieces of our book together and downloaded. Before we upload though, we need to actually have a good understanding of what people want to buy, what they ARE buying, and how you can actually sell something o this market that they will want. This is research and why it is so important to the money-making process.
So how do you find what people are buying and want to buy on Amazon?
You look to see what people are buying based on what customers are already buying. You do this by checking out this little thing called “sales rank”.
Every product on Amazon has one of these ranks and it is shown on every single product under the product details box of a product. This number will give you an idea of how well a product is selling or not selling.
If you go to a product, scroll down until you see a little box with the heading that says product details. Here, you will see an Amazon best sellers rank:
You will get better at this as time goes on, but around 100,000 sales rank in the book category is around 3-7 sales per day. Imagine if you had 100 low content books up doing 3 sales a day. Pretty easy money right?
The lower the sales rank is on the books you are looking at, the more sales that they are getting. A sales rank of 1 in the book category would mean that it is currently the best selling book on Amazon.
Now that we know that, let’s do some keyword research!
Head over to Amazon.com and type in a keyword into the search bar. I decided to search for a “nurse notebook”.
Click on search and see what pops up.
There is a LOT of results here and not all of them are going to be low content books. In fact, a ton of them is actual books that we are not going to be creating. Some are relevant to our search topic while some are not and are actual clipboards.
Open up each of these products in new tabs and look at their sales rank. How are they doing, how many are they selling?
In the screenshot below, you can see that the ones that I put a red square around are KDP books (this is our competition). Make note of what they are doing:
When you are opening the products, you may see that some of them have a little “see inside” badge on the picture. This will allow you to click and see what types of interiors that these books are using (again, these are low content interiors). A LOT of the times, you will see that they are simply using lined pages:
You could easily download this same thing from the Book Bolt Interior Wizard for free and put this book on KDP.
Speeding Up the Book Research Process
Unfortunately, going through page after page of results, and looking at all the sales ranks, and coming up with keywords off the top of your head is HARD, BORING, and stressful!
Thankfully, we can use the same software that we used for the covers to do our Book Research!
Everything I showed above was used to make my first $1,000 but after I started using software to streamline the entire process, I started earning more and spending less time.
Book Bolt lets you pull in the top-selling low content books for any keywords or author! It will give you the ability to see the sales rank on a single page without clicking through and add products to favorites to be downloaded and organized for later use.
The software also includes a keyword tool as well to give you a heads up on everyone else and find keywords that are known to bring in sales!
You can sign up for the FREE 3-day trial here: https://bookbolt.io/pricing/
You will also be able to look at how products are doing overtime. This is one of the most powerful parts of doing your research. If you can figure out how a product has been selling, you can reverse engineer it! We want to go into niches where there are constant sales, not just 1 sale and done.
Book Bolt also allows you to do this! Check out this screenshot:
We can see that this book has just been selling more and more as time has gone on, not bad!
Uploading Your Design Elements To KDP
Now we have all of the pieces to finally put up our first book on Amazon. We created a cover, got a low content book interior, and did some research to figure out what is selling.
Once you have done this a few times, you can crank out a new book in a matter of minutes.
Now, we need to upload it to the platform and get it for sale!
Head over to KDP where you made your account at the beginning of this article and log in. You will want to click on the button that says “paperback” because these are printed books:
Now, you need to fill out 3 tabs: details, content, and rights/pricing
These are all fairly straight forward:
Fill out that you want to publish the book in English. Next, it will ask you for a book title and a subtitle.
The Book Title MUST match whatever it says on your cover. The subtitle can be whatever you want but it’s a good idea to relate it back to the book and the type of interior that you used:
The next boxes are for your series and edition numbers. Leave these blank as you are not creating a series or an edition. Skip the contributor section as well.
Then, it will ask you for an author name. There is a spot for a first and last name. These do not need to be your real name but can be whatever you would like. Simply fill out one or both boxes, and that is your pen name!
The next box is for your description. Put a sentence or two down here so that the customers have something to read that tells them what they are buying. Tell them what the product is good for. If it is a notebook for nurses, put that in there. Simple is best!
If you created the cover yourself, for the publishing rights you can go ahead and select the radio button that says you own the copyright for the book:
Now, we get to a section for keywords! It looks like this:
There are 7 boxes and each one of them can contain 50 characters each. You will want to just list off a bunch of keywords that relate to your book. So if we were doing a nurse notebook, you would want to come up with as many keywords related to nursing as you can.
This can be hard to come up with off the top of your head. If you are struggling with this part, use the Keyword tool inside of the Book Bolt software we just used!
Once you have your keywords entered on KDP you can move to the next step.
Say that your book does not contain adult content and then pick 2 categories for your book. I always pick unclassifiable and then a category that is related to the niche that I am uploading on.
Click on Save and continue!
On this next page, you are getting really close to having your book live and for sale on Amazon. You will want to give your book an ISBN number. Thankfully, KDP allows you to simply click a button and get a free one!
Next, select a publication date. I always just select the day that I am uploading.
Finally, we pick some print options. You can choose different types of paper, trim size, bleed settings and the cover finish.
For the interior paper type, I always select either black and white with cream paper or black and white with white paper.
For the trim size, this MUST match what you selected for your cover and interior that we made earlier.
For the bleed settings, select bleed.
For the cover finish, this can be a personal preference. Both of these options look really nice in person:
Finally, we can upload both the interior file (the manuscript) and the cover. For the cover file, select that you already have a PDF to upload, and upload both.
These will then upload and process. It can take a few minutes for each one to process but once it does, you will get an option to open the previewer:
Once you take a look at the preview and everything looks good, go ahead and click on the Approve button!
Now, we get to the last part which is the most fun! Picking what you want your royalty to be set at. This is the money that you will get when your book sells on Amazon. It will also be available on lots of other different Amazon locales as well!
As you can see, this will net me about $2 every time the book sells at a price of $7.99. It might not seem like a lot, but there is ZERO inventory and ZERO customer support and the books will be live on Amazon and selling forever. You will not need to do any more work once it gets up, and the royalties start coming in!
Go the bottom of the page, and click on publish! This will tell you it can take up to 72 hours to publish your book, but generally, we see books alive on Amazon within the first day.
…and that’s it! You now have your first product for sale on Amazon that is available to start bringing you money even while you sleep.
Final Verdict: Ultimate Guide on How to Start a Publishing Company 2020
This pretty much sums up every one of the steps to get your books on Amazon and the quick and easy research to make sure you are creating what customers actually want to buy.
There is so much potential in this method and not many people are doing it yet let alone talking about. There is zero wait period so if you made it to the end of this article, you can go ahead and get your first book up in the next few minutes.
If you are willing to do the research with the Book Bolt software and put in the work it takes to get these products live, you should be able to create a bunch of assets that work for YOU instead of the other way around.
Good luck in your KDP business journey!