eBook authors Learn How To create, publish and market your own eBooks
eBook creation and publishing tutorial
ebook marketing
Introduction to eBooks Welcome!
Creating and Publishing eBooks Introduction
Generating Ideas Generating
Research Research
Writing Writing
eBook Compilers eBook
Creating eBooks Creating
Your Web Site Your
Web Site
3D eBook Covers 3D
eBook Covers
Copyright Copyright
Selling eBooks Selling
Increase Profits Increase Profits
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Marketing Marketing

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Setting Up Your eBook Web site

Your Web Site

If you want to have be successful in marketing your eBooks, you should get your own web site. It is essential!

If you have no idea how to build a web site, you might want to consider getting a program like Adobe Dreamweaver (one of the most popular web design programs), and perhaps a Dreamweaver tutorial as well.

Why You Should Get Good Quality Hosting - And Your Own Domain Name

If you are selling eBooks, you should get a decent quality web hosting (the people who store your web site's contents on their computers) with your own domain name - like www.yourname.com - preferably right from the very start - it may be the best investment in marketing that you ever make.

  • You have an easy to remember URL:

    If you have your own domain name your site is something like www.yourname.com - your full URL is http://www.yourname.com - this is a lot easier to advertise, and a lot easier for your customers to remember than the typical free web space URL you'd get which might be something like http://yourname.somecompany.com/ or worse yet, something like http://www.somecompany.com/users/~yourname/.

  • Your own domain name allows you to move later:

    As your business grows you may need to upgrade your hosting requirements either to another hosting company, or to a better hosting solution at the same company. If you have your own domain name, then you can take your easier to remember URL with you - and all your advertising efforts to date are not wasted. Use a free host, and you may have to start over, as your URL will most likely be completely different!

  • Credibility

    Having your own domain name adds credibility to user your business:
    • Customers are more likely to trust you - many people won't trust you to bill their credit card if you can't afford $20 to $40 per month for a decent web site!
    • Business Associates are more likely to take you seriously.

  • Search Engines

    Some search engines may favor sites with their own domain name. This means it could be easier to get visitors from search engines - and you will sell more!

  • Binary Files

    Some free hosts will not allow you to upload large binary files (.EXEs, .PDFs etc.). If you're considering using a free host - then read their Terms Of Service carefully!

    This is not usually a problem if you pay for hosting with your own domain name.

  • Reliability & Technical Support

    A paid host will usually provide some guarantees about reliability, as well as at least basic technical support.

    Free hosts usually provide no such guarantees, and may not provide any technical support at all!

    If you're running a business, then reliability is absolutely crucial. Every minute your web site is not working - you could be losing customers!

    With a paid host, you can complain until they fix it, you may even be able to get some compensation for excessive downtime - and in the worst case, if you're still unhappy you can take your domain name and move to a different hosting company.

    With a free host, you may have no real comeback. If the site doesn't live up to expectations, yes you can move to a different free host, but as your URL will change, you have to start marketing all over again - and your existing customers may not even be able to find you!

A lot of people tend to think all the great dot com names are taken - but, in my experience, there are tons of good ones still available - you just need to look a bit harder or be more inventive.

Now, you can ignore everything I've said in this section if you want - and go for a free site. It's true that some free web hosts do offer really nice packages - but just be aware that you are making a big decision with potentially huge implications when you decide between free and paid hosting. Don't just do something because it's easier right now - think longer-term!

Choosing A Host

When choosing your host, I recommend that you look at price, features, the amount of space you get, and most crucially the amount of bandwidth you get included per month. More bandwidth, means more people can download your eBooks before you start paying extra fees to your host.

Say your eBook is 500K - if you get 1 Gigabyte of bandwidth per month, theoretically that means 2,000 people can download your eBook before you run out of bandwidth. However in reality, it will turn out to be less, as people accessing your web site, sending you e-mail etc., may also count towards your bandwidth allowance!

To help you find a suitable web host: We have put together a searchable directory of web hosts at WebHostingPicks.com.

What To Put On Your Web Site

There are three things that you must have on your eBook web site:
(you can have more if needed, or if you want, or required by law in your jurisdiction).
  1. You must explain what your eBook is about:

    Try to explain in the customer's own language what your eBook is about and what benefits the customer will get by reading it.

    Customers will buy or download an eBook because they believe that your product will enhance their life (give them some benefit) that they want.

    Obviously it helps to explain your eBook in terms that are as clear and convincing as possible. Here are some resources that may help:

    Not everybody likes to think of it like this - but if you are honest with yourself - what you are really doing when you explain the benefits of owning your eBook is writing a sales letter. In my opinion, it's better to face the facts and accept that's what you're doing: understanding what you're trying to do, is crucial to achieving the results you want to achieve. Additionally once you accept that you are writing a sales letter, you can take advantage of all the research and expertise that others have already put into this field - there are lots of books that have been written on this subject.

    One last thing that you may like to add to your web site is one of those cool 3D "virtual cover/box" images. You'll find out more about how you can get these in the next chapter.

  2. You must provide a mechanism for your customers to obtain the eBook:

    You must provide a mechanism, and clear instructions for customers to order, download or otherwise obtain a copy of your eBook.

    Often times when surfing, I come across a web site with a great sales message, and a desirable product - I decide I want it - I'm ready to pay right now - and then I can't find the order form...

  3. How To Contact You:

    • Some customers will have problems or questions.
    • Some customers will want to thank you for a great product.
    • Some customers will want to check you're a real person before sending you money.

    So make sure that you provide an easy method for customers to contact you, including your e-mail address, and preferably your telephone number too.
There are also a lot of optional elements that you can include, and may help you convince more of your web site's visitors to either buy or download your eBook. I strongly recommend you try to include these:
  • Proof:

    Guarantees, Testimonials, Free Trials, Sample Chapters - or other supporting evidence that demonstrates the claims you make about your eBooks are true.

  • Who You Are:

    Try not to clutter you main message explaining who you are - but provide either a small sidebar, or include on a separate page, who you are, and why customers can trust you.

    A nice (optional) touch is to include a small scanned photograph of yourself. Generally customers will feel that if you publish your photograph, and your contact details, then you are more likely to live up to your promises.

Aside from the above, and any other elements that you consider absolutely essential, it's probably best not to put too much extra information on your site (if you have a lot more to say, then put it on a different site!), as the more distractions you have, the more likely customers are to get distracted and end up not ordering or downloading your eBook.

If you have only one web site - but more than one eBook - then you should consider getting another domain name, and sticking to one web site per eBook. (or at least to one web site per eBook subject). If you check with your hosting company, it may be possible to add hosting for a 2nd domain name for a lot less money than you paid for hosting the 1st domain name.

However, if you really only want one web site and domain name for all your eBooks, then at least try to organize things logically, and at least stick to one subject per page.


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