One of the authors on our Whatsapp group for authors asked how to publish books as preorders. After answering his question, I felt I should also do the same here.
I must confess I have not really exploited the benefits of publishing books as preorders on the various online ebook stores. I have done one or two books as preorders in the past though. However, I did not really exploit the process to ensure I sell more books through it or market my preorder links effectively.
Mark Coker, founder of Smashwords.com, the largest ebook aggregator in the world, has said many good things about how to publish books as preoders and the benefits of publishing books as preorders in his many ebooks and articles on his blog.
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What is a preorder
I believe I need let you know this at this stage.
A preorder is an order for your book which has not been fully completed but which has been placed for sale on an online bookstore or publishing platform.
You can publish your book and make it available for sale on the various ebook stores even if you have not finished writing it. The ebook stores where it is published will make it available to their various customers for sale.
While publishing it, you will specify a date when you hope to make the final books available. On this date, after you have uploaded your final book on the platform where it was bought, it will be delivered to the buyer instantly.
Publishing your books as a preorder can help you to evaluate how popular your unfinished books will be. There are other benefits which I hope to cover in another article.
Note: You can also read How to format your books for kindle publishing
Publish books as preorders on Amazon
When you publish on Amazon you have an option to set it as preorder. Amazon has the traffic already so they naturally will send the traffic to your link if all things are done appropriately during publication. However you can do more by buying amazon ads to send traffic to your preorder link.
Amazon will require you to upload a draft of the unfinished book before it can allow you to publish the book as a preorder. Smashwords has something different from this, you will read about it below.
Publish books as preorders on Smashwords
Smashwords also has a preorder publishing program in place. You can set your book as a preorder during publication. Smashwords even has what is called ‘Assetless preorder’ publication where you can publish even when your manuscripts is not ready.
You only have your cover, title, subtitle and description for the book to get this done. Smashwords will send your books to many retailers on their network. Your preorder will be listed on these platforms in less than two weeks. It will appear in the Smashwords store immediately you hit the publish button.
What can you do further to bring traffic to your preorder book link
- You can give out the link on Facebook groups where kindle books are sold or discussed. You will join the groups and post your link with a good description of what your book can do for members. You should also mention that it is a preorder.
- You can also go for paid adverts like Facebook ads (you must learn how to use this so that you don’t waste money).
- You can pay for ads in newsletters that share information on the theme of your book. You can search for ‘blog:your topic’ to see options. If you get to any blog you should check if they have the link to advertise on their blog. You must verify how many people are on their list before you commit yourself to do business with them.
I hope you have been able to pick some good points from this article. I will be doing a bigger article on this topic in the future. Please subscribe to our publishing suite to get notified when I have a fresh article on this blog on this topic.