Wait, what do I mean when I say that you can sell books online on autopilot? Isn’t selling online in general already considered autopilot at this point?
Well, you’re not wrong to say that selling anything online is already hands-off as far as selling digital products and selling books on other retailers are concerned.
But when it comes to selling books directly to your readers, it can feel like there’s a missing piece to make it work on autopilot.
But when it comes to getting these potential readers to buy from you, that’s another matter altogether.
Believe me, it’s not easy to convince your potential readers to buy your books from any retailer, let alone on your author website.
But with the right approach, selling your books directly to your readers can no longer be an uphill battle when you have the right system in place.
What I use to sell books online on autopilot
It’s no secret here that I use Payhip to sell my books not just on my fiction author website, Sekina Mayu. But I even use Payhip on The Efficient You as well.
What’s not to love about Payhip when you can get started for free and the transaction fee is a lot less than what you pay to Amazon?
Of course, you can use other solutions to sell books online as well. It doesn’t have to be Payhip specifically.
But I find that it’s easier to implement all the things that I mentioned in this post when I use Payhip.
In case you’re wondering, I did use Gumroad in the past. If you’re curious about my reason for switching to Payhip, you can read the post right here.
The only thing I can’t do on Payhip, at least for now, is to sell my print books directly on my Payhip store.
Sure, I can always buy my books in bulk and fulfill the order myself. But when it comes to the hands-off approach, I can’t do that with Payhip since it doesn’t have any integration with Lulu and Bookvault.
So yes, I may have to put the idea of selling my print books directly to my readers on hold for now unless I can integrate my Payhip store with Lulu and Bookvault.
Do these first before you tweak your online store to make sales on autopilot
You can have the best sales system for your online store. But it’s not going to magically make you swimming in money if you have a terrible-looking book cover and a flat-sounding blurb.
Even if you’re selling your books on your online store and nowhere else, having a professional book cover design and an enticing blurb still matter.
It’s these two things that will make or break your book sales. The rest of them are secondary.
So before you do anything else, get a professional book cover design for your books and rewrite your book description first.
This is the book that I always refer to every time I have to write a blurb for my book.
And if you need a guide to writing a blurb for a nonfiction book, this book by Dan Kennedy is a good start.
While the book is mainly about writing a sales letter, you can implement the same concept in writing the blurb as well.
If you nail these parts right, you’re already halfway there.
How you can sell books online on autopilot
Now that you already lay the right foundation for your books, how can you get more of your potential readers to buy books directly from you?
Well, here are some of the things that you can do to entice your readers to buy from you instead of the retailers.
Have a discount code anywhere that is visible to your readers
Okay, I get that some of you may not like the idea of offering discounts on your books. But the thing is people are more likely to buy your books when they’re on sale.
And it’s even more so for the books that they’ve never heard about.
I’m sure that you’ll do the same as well. Rather than buying the items at full price, you’ll wait until they’re on sale.
So, why should it be any different for your books?
When it comes to getting your readers to buy from you, the books don’t have to be dirt cheap either. Even offering 20% off can still be enticing enough since most people love to save as much money as they can even if it’s only a penny.
This is what I do on my blog where my readers can get 25% off when they buy my books on my Payhip store.
Of course, they can always buy my book in places where they usually get their bookish fix. But they can only get a discount when they buy from my Payhip store.
That’s a good incentive, don’t you think?
And while we’re at it, you can use this coupon code THEEFFICIENTYOU to save 25% off on your purchase when you buy any of my novels on my Payhip store.
Upsell, upsell, and upsell
Want to get readers to buy more books from you? This is where the upsell feature comes in.
What makes the upsell a powerful feature is that it will automatically trigger whenever your reader adds the books to the cart or at the checkout page.
Let’s say your readers are buying the first book from the series. The upsell will then start to kick in, prompting the readers whether they’d like to buy the second book from the series at half the price.
What do you think the readers will do at this point?
Will they pass the promotion? Or will they buy the book knowing that it’s the only time where they can buy the book at a cheaper price?
Unless they already have the book, they’re more likely to buy the second book right now. They know well enough that they can never buy the book at half the price anymore if they decided to buy the book later.
Just imagine if you have five or six books in the series. Enabling the upsell will only make your readers buy the whole book in the series in one go.
Thus, increasing the number of sales generated by one person.
That’s the power of upselling.
The thing about upselling is that you do need to offer the book at a lower price to entice your readers, though.
You may not like the idea of slashing the price just to get the readers to buy the second book onward.
But if it helps with getting readers to buy more books from you, then it’s all worth it.
Offer a social discount
The premise behind the social discount is pretty simple. Your readers will receive a discount when they share the product page on their social media accounts.
And in Payhip’s case, it’ll be on Facebook.
To be honest, it can be hard to make social discount work since your readers may not have an account on that social media platform.
Or they just flat-out refuse to share your books on their profile.
Just to be clear that it’s not that they hate you or anything. It’s just that they probably don’t want to share the books they read on their profile especially if they’re the spicy types.
If you do want to utilize your social media profiles, my suggestion is to create a coupon code just for your readers on that social media platform and plaster it in a visible place.
That’s what I did on my Twitter profile for the fiction side of things where I pin the tweet that has a coupon code and a link to my Payhip store.
Sure, it’s not the same as getting them to unlock the discount by sharing the book page on their social media profile.
But some people would rather keep their reading list to themselves. So, make it easy for them to buy from you if they happen to discover you on social media.
Will this ever work for me?
To be honest, I can’t answer that question for you since it depends on the kind of books you write and your audience.
But hey, it doesn’t hurt to give these strategies a try since it’s not that hard to implement regardless of the platform you use.
And if you’re thinking of giving Payhip a try, you can take a look at it right here:
P.S Another way to get your readers to buy directly from you? Well, it’s to connect with your readers on social media, of course.
If you’re using Twitter and wondering how you can use Twitter effectively to connect with your readers, then you’re going to love Twitter Marketing For Business guide.
In this guide, you’ll learn everything you need to know about Twitter from setting your Twitter profile to get your potential readers to follow you on Twitter to managing your Twitter presence without sucking the life out of you.
As you can expect, you can take a look at the guide on my Payhip store. How meta can I be, right?
Don’t forget to use the coupon code THEEFFICIENTYOUBLOG during checkout to save 20% off on your purchase.
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