Why Am I Not Making Money With Kindle eBooks?


I have a handful of reasons to share why I’m not making money with Kindle ebooks. Do you know a cool thing about this ebook’s failure? I’m not pissed; it’s quite the opposite, in reality. I’m excited to share this lesson with you.

Consider this blog post as part one of the series on making money with self-publishing and ebooks; I’m working on the next blog posts related to self-publishing.

So the title of the blog post pretty much explains what I’m about to discuss.

This topic popped up in my mind when I asked the very question to myself.

“Why Am I Not Making Money With Kindle eBooks?”

There are three things you should know about me.

First: I’m a decision-maker; I make decisions and take full responsibility for the result.

Second: I’m not a quitter; I don’t quit, but instead, I fight till the end.

Third: I firmly believe that success isn’t an overnight thing.

So when I started publishing eBooks on Kindle, which is known as Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP), I had no idea what to do.

I thought preparing the Kindle eBook and putting it out there was the highest level of achievement in my self-publishing career. Little did I know that marketing and selling are the massive challenges ahead.

Almost two years later, I ended up selling less than two dozens copies of eBooks across Kindle and PDF formats.

You might think that it’s a huge failure, and in a perfect world, it might be.

But I see it differently.

While everyone would love to fixate on the failure.

I, on the other hand, would like to shed some light on the reasons why I have not been able to sell more copies across two ebook formats.

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So let’s get to the cream of this blog post.

why I am failing at selling kindle ebooks

5 Reasons Why I’m Not Making Money with Kindle eBooks

Pay attention to the reasons why I’m not making money, and this might turn things around for you in your self-publishing career:

1. Fewer Books

At the time of start writing this blog post, I have had three kindle ebooks in my KDP account, but I managed to put out another ebook lately. You won’t believe this; I got my first sale of the fourth ebook on the third day of the launch. So I learned a few things right off the bat after publishing the fourth ebook, which I’ll discuss in a future blog post.

So if you aren’t making money with Kindle ebooks, then maybe you have fewer books under your name. What I’m trying to say is that you should publish more books. I have four now, and I’m planning to get to 10 till June 30, 2021. I learned that fewer books won’t make you any money unless you get lucky or something.

2. Keyword Research

Keyword research is such a buzzword in content marketing and search engine optimization that it catches the attention. I’d rather say keyword analysis than keyword research; it’s basically the same thing. The only difference is that keyword research gives a tool-based research connotation.

What I like, even in blogging, is understanding the search intent and user behavior, and then focusing on the keyword. I applied the same thing in book #4 and I got stunned when the first sale came in on day three.

So don’t overlook paying attention to the right keywords while choosing the book name.

3. Spreading the Word

Spreading the word is a highly underrated marketing strategy. Perhaps, beginner self-publish authors don’t realize that spreading the word about their books goes a long way. I’m no exception — I’ve done the same mistake.

I thought creating a book page on the blog is enough. Little did I know that even established self-authors do a lot of hustle to get the book sales.

This is one of the main reasons why I’m not making money from Kindle ebooks. My PDF format has done way better than the Kindle edition, but I need more for obvious reasons.

Here’s how I can spread the word about my ebooks:

  • Start a podcast and mention my ebooks in it
  • Make videos on YouTube and plug ebooks from time to time
  • Highlight my ebooks on the blog sidebar
  • Create a Reusable ebooks table in WordPress
  • Use Medium, LinkedIn, and Vocal Author boxes for promotion

If you have more suggestions about spreading the word about the ebooks, let me know in the comments below.

4. Amazon Ads

Amazon ads can be run directly through your KDP account. This is something I haven’t done it before, but now I’ve realized that it was a mistake.

I can’t believe that I’d say this, but Amazon ads are necessary if you want Kindle ebook sales. I’ve heard so many self-published authors talk about Amazon ads, and essentially why it’s important to run Amazon ads.

My takeaway is that Amazon advertising allows you to put your ebooks on a pedestal. We all know how diversified and large Amazon Kindle ebooks section is. So I won’t mind spending a few dollars once I figure out how to get a better ROI on Amazon ads.

5. Cross Promotion

Amazon doesn’t allow affiliate links in the Kindle ebooks. Therefore, it kept me from adding not just affiliate links, but also non-affiliate links. As a result, I couldn’t upsell Kindle ebooks from a few sales that I got on KDP.

I’ve realized that I should be cross-promoting my ebooks by mentioning them in the ebooks’ matter. Since all four of my ebooks are about freelancing, so the cross-promotion could become even smoother. It would have been strange if I start promoting pets-related ebooks in my freelancing ebooks. I don’t think Amazon has a problem if you cross-promote your Kindle ebooks, but if you think otherwise, do let me know in the comments.

Let’s Conclude This

I’ve shared five self-publishing mistakes that I have been making for the past few years, but I’m glad that I’ve figured out what I need to do to fix this.

I have been self-publishing for almost three years now, but never took it seriously until a month ago. Not only am I going fix these mistakes, but I will also be doubling-down on publishing ebooks on other ebook platforms.

I highly recommend subscribing to my blog to get to know everything I’m doing to add more passive income ideas into the business.