In the last post, we talked about self-publishing a children’s book on CD. This is the final installment in the answers to questions posted by a writer.
Patti McQuillen wrote in answer to my follow-up questions:
I don’t have a clue about making my children’s book available online as a download. I am working on a website through Google Page Creator. I cannot afford to have a professional one yet.
I’m glad you’re setting up a Web site, but I think you will have more marketing success if you have your own domain name and site rather than xxx.googlepages.com. I set up sites for my clients for less than ten dollars to register the domain name and as little as forty dollars a year for hosting. You can use WordPress (which is free) as a template and have a blog and Web site that you can create and maintain yourself. I created the site for GASLight Publishing on WordPress.
You can then sell both the CD and download versions of your book. Although the ideal option is a shopping cart with secure download features, that is expensive and not necessary for a single product or even a few products.
Updated: I have recently learned of E-Junkie, a shopping cart for digital products that is very reasonable (only five dollars per month for up to 10 products). You can even try it free for one week.
One simple process that works when you have a fairly small number of sales is to store a zip file containing all the e-book formats in a password protected area of your site. When you make a sale, have an autoresponder send out a link for the buyer to download the file. You can accept payment through PayPal or Google Checkout.
Selling Digital Products Online: Why? How? at MoreBusiness.com has a lot of information about selling digital products.
Another option is to sell through Lulu or PayLoadz. Lulu will also create and ship CDs, but I believe PayLoadz offers only digital downloads. There are other options as well, several of which are listed in the MoreBusiness.com article mentioned above.
Once you have your site and distribution set up, then you start blogging and commenting on other blogs and look for other opportunities to participate in forums and other places – perhaps educational sites and writing sites – frequented by people who would be apt to buy your children’s book.
I hope these posts have given you some insight into the next step … or several next steps, Patti, and that this information has also been helpful to other aspiring writers.
If you have a question or a particular topic you’d like me to write about, please ask in the comments below.