free books

How To Give Up Short Term Sales To Get Long Term Sales (Self Publishing Authors)

Everyone loves free stuff.  An Amazon customer may not be willing to buy work from author they don’t know, but they will take a chance on an author if their work is free.   That’s why it’s important to give freebies away every now and then.

This may sound counterintuitive, but hear me out.

Giving freebies can increase sales because it hooks in new readers.  Even if you give away 100 books in one day and you gain one true fan it’s a success.  Now you have a fan who will not only buy your older titles but buy anything you produce in the future.

Amazon let’s you  promote your book for FREE for up to 5 days during the 90 day cycle it’s in KDP.  You can promote it for free 5 days in a row, or you can set it up for a couple days one month, and a couple days the next month.  Maybe you only promote it for the weekend.

When you give away something for free do it strategically.  Never give new releases out for free.  I usually give away older titles that have slid down the sales ranking.  I always notice that the sales ranking spikes up significantly after giving the book away for free, which means more eyeballs on your book thus more sales & borrows.

If you have an older series I recommend giving away the first book of the series.  If the customer loved the first book their sure to buy the rest of the series.

You should also make sure to update the front & back matter of your book before you make it free, especially if it’s an older title.  This will help direct potential fans to your most recent work.

My summer sales have been pretty slow.  Two weekends ago I decided to give away one of my older titles for free.  I promoted it for 5 days.  During those 5 days I gave away over 300 free units.  The following week my sales & borrows increased significantly.  In fact, I’ve been having my best stretch of sales all summer.

Not only have I increased sales, but the book I gave away for free has increased it sales ranking. An otherwise dead book is now revived.

If you have a big catalog in Amazon consider giving away an older title for free.  Try promoting over the weekend.  Update the front & back matter to your most recent work.  You may be surprised to see an uptick in sales.