Ever wonder why some books sell more copies and make the best seller lists while others seem to flop. Often it is not the talent of the author that makes the difference. Certainly that is a major factor. However, in many instances it is a combination of factors, starting with the sheer volume of books published each year.
One report after another indicates that the publishing industry is in flux. The number of print books are going down each year while eBooks are becoming more in demand. Nonfiction books typically sell fewer copies than fiction books.
I do not want to discourage you as an author, but to get a sense of what you are up against throughout the world, take a look at the figures related to how many books are published yearly http://www.worldometers.info/books/. Some of these numbers are dated, but the trends are typical from year-to-year. Granted not all those books are direct competitors for yours. However, even if you only plan to sell in the United States, there were almost 28,000 books published monthly in 2010, according to the UNESCO survey on the website above. In addition to numbers of books published, you also have to consider how many are in your genre and format (print versions or eBooks).
The key to making your book stand out from the competition is to decide the following things before you ever write it:
- What is your topic?
- Who is your target audience?
- In what format (s) will the book appear (eBook, print, electronic, combination)?
- Will you use traditional or self publishing?
- What other competing books are already in publication?
- What is your author platform?
- How will you market the book?
- How will the book be distributed?
The answers to these and a number of other questions will ultimately impact your how well your book sells. That is because being an author is a business. Like any business, you need a plan and should not enter into it without giving thorough thought to all aspects of the writing and publication process. A key element of this process is to develop a marketing plan before writing, then stick with it once the book is published.
For ideas and strategies on how to potentially increase sales and create additional residual and passive income streams as an author, get a copy of Make Money Writing Books: Proven Profit Making Strategies for Authors by Robert W. Lucas.