In May I made $7773.75 self publishing low content books on Amazon KDP. This was also my highest month I’ve had since I first started self publishing in around October 2019.
A majority of this was all profit too. My expenses for May was $566 and this included some paid advertising and tools.
Those expenses also include things that are non-kdp related. For example; it includes the cost for Merch Informer, (which I use for Merch by Amazon).
Some other info you may want to know:
- Total Books Live: 484.
- I started publishing in October 2019.
- One book last month accounted for almost $2000 on its own in May.
- The second highest seller, made over $1500.
- I don’t promote my books outside of Amazon. I do a small amount of Ads, but a majority of my sales are organic, (not a result of advertising – just keyword/niche research).
Also, something crazy happened last month. Over the course of a single day, I sold over 600 copies of ONE book.
Over 600 Copies Of One Book Sold In A Single Day?
The biggest surprise of the month was over the course of one day, where hundreds of a book sold – seemingly in one giant order.
Just over 600 were of one book. The rest just makes up the other sales of the day.
What was more surprising was, this was not usually a book I sold that much of.
For example; the BSR, (best selling rank) currently sits at 400k.
Unfortunately, there is no way of knowing who bought this book. Was it a company that’s now selling it on for a higher price? I have no idea.
However, the thing is – when a bulk order is made, Amazon still classes it as ONE ORDER. This means, that the BSR, (best seller rank) will only change to the extent that it would if there was one sale!
So, even though I sold over 600 copies of this book in one day, the BSR stayed pretty stable.
No one who was researching books by BSR will ever know just how much this book is really selling!!!!
I actually had another order of 100 copies of this same book, some days after that initial order. I have yet to have such massive orders so far this month in June, but we will have to see.
This has drawn my attention to the fact that BSR isn’t everything when you’re researching niches. Perhaps another thing to consider, is how likely the book could be to being ordered in bulk!
Bulk orders are something I’ve experienced pretty frequently with my books — not to the extent of that one massive order. But from anywhere from 30 to 100+ ordered in bulk now and then.
So, it’s definitely something I’m bear in mind for future books and niches.
Do You Need To Run Ads To Make Money With KDP?
For the first 12 months of self publishing – I used zero Ads. I started experimenting in January and I still feel like I’m very much experimenting.
I do not feel like I’ve totally cracked it and most of my sales are not a result of using them.
That said, I do feel I’ve benefited from running Ads on BRAND NEW books.
This will only work with books that you’re really confident are decent quality and I’d also wait until the “look-inside,” feature is available.
I’ve recently seen some people running Ads to brand new books which are really poor quality and where the look-inside feature isn’t even showing yet.
Unless your cover is good, you’re not going to make sales. Some people that I can see will clearly be losing money with Ads and probably won’t make any sales.
But how can you tell your cover isn’t good? This is the problem — sometimes we just aren’t the best judge of our own work.
Especially for those of us that are not designers.
Some of us probably make a little effort and just see our work as great and high quality…. When in reality, it’s not good at all.
While I’m not a designer, I have had a lot of practice over half a decade. I’ve had to learn to make blog graphics and Pinterest pins for example…… Some of my early attempts are not good!
There are still plenty of graphics on this blog that are pretty ugly looking to me – but at the time I created them, I thought they were fine.
So, while you do not need to be an artist or a graphic designer to get into low content publishing…
If you DO have some experience, or at the least some vague artistic ability – you’re probably going to find it a lot easier to make sales.
Does Prior Online Experience Help Too?
Self publishing is also not my FIRST experience with making money online and I think this is quite important as well.
In a way, everything I have learnt up until this point helped me to get started with KDP.
Over five years ago I first joined Wealthy Affiliate – where I started to build niche websites, learn about SEO and keyword research and about affiliate marketing.
Everything I learnt about online business and in particular, keyword research and niche research, really helped me when it came to researching niches on Amazon.
Prior to that, it helped me get started with Merch By Amazon too.
I think this is a pretty common scenario when you check out some of the success stories on KDP.
A majority of the success stories you see on YouTube, for example; all seem to have had some prior experience making money online…. Whether that’s directly from publishing high content, blogging, affiliate marketing, e-commerce, print on demand and so on.
That doesn’t mean you can’t do well if you don’t have any online experience – it just means that it may take longer.
Do I Recommend KDP As A Primary Business?
I wouldn’t recommend that anyone SOLEY rely on Amazon for their income in the long term.
Amazon is an incredible platform and one I’ve managed to make money from in a variety of ways, (from affiliate marketing, selling Tshirts and now via selling books).
But I would definitely recommend having multiple income streams in the long term.
For example; for sometime in 2020 – Amazon completely shut down their t-shirt printing facilities. There were people pulling in tens of thousands of dollars a month via Merch by Amazon and it was just cut off overnight.
It was the people who had additional businesses on the go that were able to simply ride that time out.
For example; those who also sold products on their own website and who had also published their designs on multiple other platforms in addition.
Plenty of other people also do KDP while holding down a full time job or part time job and see the income as a great extra additional income coming in.
Ultimately, it’s just a good idea to have more than one source of income in addition to your Amazon income if you can.
Should You Start Low Content Publishing?
the great thing about self publishing on KDP… Whether thats low or high content, is that it’s entirely free to do so! While
This has also been problematic, as some people have decided to take it as an opportunity to spam the system and simply hope they’re going to make sales.
I think by all means, give it a go.
But really take your time to create a book that you are proud of.
Also, don’t think of it as a numbers game. Take your time creating a small number of high quality and see how those go before you create more.
As soon as you make any sales, try and capitalise on any information you can gain from it.
Can you make other books in that niche?
Could you create different styles?
Are their sub-niches that you could go into?
Try and make some more unique books in any niche you find success in and see how those go!
If you have any questions about KDP… Let me know in the comments!
Pin For Later:
Hello, I really love your content. Did you published before your keyword and niche research strategy ? If so, please point me to the right article for that.
Thank so much and have a great day.
I haven’t done much about niche research, but I will soon. I’m also just organising a cheat sheet freebie that I will hopefully get live on the blog soon. You might want to check out the post I did recently about how I enter my keywords in the 7 sections here. I’m just writing a post at the moment on keyword research, so that should come out soon. Have a great day!
Thanks Nat for the niche information and advices. I’ m just a beginner in KDP and still
learning. I hope one day I’ll be like you.
Thanks Saadia! Good luck going forward with this.
Love this post! I have been thinking about making some journals and organizing lists and wondered if Amazon would be the right place. You’ve helped me make up my mind to definitely go for it. Looking forward to following you 🙂
Thanks Susan! Go for it and many thanks for taking the time to contact me 🙂