Today, I have an informative interview to share with you that will show you how to create an eBook. I recently had the chance to interview my friend Abby from Just a Girl and Her Blog, who explains how creating eBooks may be a great income source for you.
Abby made over $110,000 from sales of digital products (such as eBooks) in 2015 and is on track to crush that in 2016. She started 3 years ago knowing nothing about blogging and now makes six figures a year, due in large part to her eBooks. She is now teaching others the process she uses to write and launch profitable eBooks, and you guys, it is genius!
If you are looking for a new business idea or even just a side hustle, then you may want to look into how to create an eBook.
Check out the interview below for more information on how to create an eBook. If you’ve ever thought about writing an eBook but weren’t sure where to start, today’s interview will help you learn how to create an eBook and successfully sell it!
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Please give us a little background on yourself. Can you tell us more about your blog, why you started it, when you started it, etc.?
I started Just a Girl and Her Blog on a whim in January 2013. I was staying at home with my two sons at the time and was just looking for a creative outlet and a project to keep me busy. I didn’t start with the intention of turning the blog into a full-fledged business, but I soon caught the blogging bug and began to learn everything I could about growing my site.
Today, Just a Girl and Her Blog focuses mostly on home decor and organization posts, and we also (like Michelle!) have a transparent business and publish income reports each month.
What’s your favorite way to make money blogging?
Creating and selling my own digital products, like eBooks and courses, is my favorite way to make money blogging.
There is something really gratifying about earning money from something you created yourself from beginning to end, and I love that digital products allow me to help people in a more in-depth way than I ever could through a blog post alone.
What made you decide to write an eBook?
I wrote my first eBook because Donnie made me. 😉
I was terrified to write an eBook because I was afraid no one would buy it or that people would think I was silly or that I wouldn’t know how to market it. Donnie is pretty convincing, though, and so I got writing, he began figuring out what tools we needed and which strategies we should use to launch, and our first eBook, Building a Framework: The Ultimate Blogging Handbook, was born!
Since then we have written two more eBooks, Simplify: 35+ Printables to Help You Organize Your Life (a collection of organizational printables) and The Paperless Home: How to Use Evernote to Organize Your Life (which explains how to get rid of paperwork and use a digital system instead). We also have a printable planner called The Intentional Life Planner, and we just released our first online course, BookBoss: How to Write and Launch a Profitable eBook in 90 Days or Less.
If you don’t mind, how much money have you made from eBooks?
In 2015, we made over $110,000 from sales of digital products, and in the first quarter of 2016, we’ve made over $58,000 from digital product sales already.
Is it hard to learn how to create an eBook?
I wouldn’t ever say that writing an eBook is an “easy” task, but if you know the steps to take to plan and execute a launch, it is definitely doable to learn how to create an eBook.
I typically recommend a time period of about 90 days to write and launch an eBook– it would be a challenge to do it well in a much shorter time period, and when we’ve tried to go longer than that, we end up feeling like “Oh we have so much time!”, put things off, and end up doing everything in the last 90-ish days anyway!
Who can make money from an eBook? Do they need to have a blog?
I would recommend that people have started a blog and developed a consistent posting routine before beginning to write an eBook. You definitely don’t have to have a huge following or have been blogging for years and years, though.
I would say that most people wait too long before writing their first eBook!
What do you like about writing eBooks?
I love that they allow me to help my readers solve a problem or meet a need in a more in-depth way that a blog post could. I love that they’re fairly simple to create, which allows you to focus on the all-important launch process.
They’re also a great way to help readers transition from coming to your blog just for free content to getting used to purchasing something from you since eBooks are typically lower priced than courses or larger products.
I love earning money from eBooks because when you have the right systems in place, your sales are on autopilot, so it really can become passive income.
What specific steps does a person need to learn how to create an eBook?
I think the biggest thing bloggers can do to set themselves up for success with eBook writing is growing a focused, dedicated email list full of people who are interested in their eBook topic.
The quality of the email list will play a huge role in determining how successful the launch is. It is also important to create an organized, detailed launch plan so that you know when you’re going to post and guest post about your topic, when you’re going to email your list, when you’re going to do social media series and shoutouts, when you will set up all of your systems and payment processors, etc.
The more specific the launch plan, the easier it will be to execute the launch because you will know exactly what you have to do when. After launch, you can continue to drive sales by sending people to a lead magnet that is related to your eBook topic, continuing to post and guest post about your topic, and getting the word out on all of your social channels.
What costs are associated with writing an eBook?
There can be very little cost to writing an eBook.
For our first book, the only money we spent up front was $100 to a designer to create the cover for us; we did everything else ourselves.
We now typically spend a little more than that for the cover plus related graphics we use for promotion (we pay our designer $50 per hour). We pay a monthly fee for Instapage, the service we use to create our landing pages.
There are monthly fees and small transaction fees associated with the provider you choose to use to process your payments (we use both Gumroad and SendOwl). We pay a percentage to affiliates for any sales they send our way. We also pay for our email service, ConvertKit, though we use it for purposes other than launching eBooks as well.
Are there any other tips that you have for someone who wants to learn how to create an eBook?
Set a firm launch date, make a solid plan, and go for it!
So many people say they want to write an eBook, but they never take action and actually do it! Yes, there are a lot of steps in the process, but if you just take it one step at a time, you will get there!
Are you interested in learning how to create an eBook?
Lindsay @ The Notorious D.E.B.T. says
I’d like to make an ebook at some point just because I think it’d be fun, but honestly I have no idea what I would write about. I think that’s the biggest thing holding me back.
Abby @ Just a Girl and Her Blog says
We talk about how to find the perfect topic in BookBoss! 🙂 Excited to see what you come up with, Lindsay! Have a wonderful weekend!
The Green Swan says
I’m curious your thoughts on the advantages / disadvantages of writing an eBook versus writing and publishing a book available through Amazon via paperback or Kindle?
Very insightful post, thanks!
Abby @ Just a Girl and Her Blog says
We haven’t done paperbacks, but I know they would have a smaller profit margin due to printing costs. I hope this helps! Have a great weekend!
Steve Boyko says
I notice she disclosed her income from “sales of digital products” but not eBooks specifically.. this must include online training, perhaps affiliate sales, etc. Curious to know what their actual eBook income is.
I’m also interested in the decision to sell an eBook vs publishing via Kindle.
Abby @ Just a Girl and Her Blog says
Hi, Steve! Great questions! BookBoss is our first official course, so all of the income I mentioned from 2015 was from 4 products: Building a Framework eBook, Simplify eBook, The Paperless Home eBook, and The Intentional Life Planner (which is a planner rather than an eBook, hence “digital products” :). There would have been a little bit of income from BookBoss at the very end of March, but besides that, all of the first quarter of 2016 was those same four products. You can see a detailed breakdown of what we make from each individual eBook in our income reports: http://justagirlandherblog.com/income-reports/ . We include affiliate income in a separate category, so it would not have played into those numbers I mentioned.
Kalie @ Pretend to Be Poor says
Wow, I never thought an ebook could come together in 90 days. It’s motivating to know it could!
Abby @ Just a Girl and Her Blog says
It totally can be done! 🙂 Hope you have a wonderful weekend, Kalie!
Tyler @ Oddball Wealth says
I have always thought about writing an ebook, what do you recommend as far as a minimum page length for an ebook? And what would you recommend as a price for an ebook of that page length?
Also great interview and interesting post!
Natalie @ Financegirl says
This year I am focusing solely on platform growth, but as soon as I get my followers up to 10k on each platform, I am going all in on digital products. I’m definitely bookmarking this! If there’s one person who does exceptionally well with digital products, it’s Abby! Would love to learn from her! 🙂
Jaimie McCallum says
I’ve been writing books at home for years and never published or tried to get published, is there really that great of a demand for ebooks that you can make an income? I’m tired of living paycheck to paycheck! 🙂
Yippee, love this! Abby is one of the main reasons I started blogging! She is such a positive person and I love that she has always been so open sharing with what works and doesn’t work in their income reports. I am so glad her and Donnie are so real with their readers!
By selling e-books for virtually pennies on the $, marketers put themselves closer toward becoming Internet millionaires. They can also share a link on their blog or website to their Amazon and Scribd profiles if that’s where they’re selling their e-books to increase e-book income potential. What you think about this Michelle? 🙂
Thanks so much for sharing this guest post! I’ve since dug into Abby’s website even further and she provides SO much useful advice. I’m writing my first ebook now and this is sure to be invaluable to me.
Very insightful. Thank you for sharing!
Tondeleya Allen says
This is so exciting for anyone who wants to be published. For years I had gone the self-publishing route-printing physical books and selling them. I am really grateful for the ability to digitally publish. It makes things a little less complicated, more financially feasible, and definitely helps me gain a wider audience.Thanks for sharing your story!
Emenike Emmanuel says
Thanks for inspiring me today. Your story of making over $100k selling your eBook alone is a great motivation to me. I recently launched my online course and will soon be launching my first paid eBook. So far, the online course launch was massive, I got lots of share. And I know the eBook launch will be massive. I’m working hard to make everything automated.
Thank you Michelle for hosting Abby here. I learnt something new to guy me in my eBook launch.
The only thing holding me back from writing a blog and ebooks, is that I have a teensy email list … if it is up to my personal contacts to launch this thing, I am dead in the water. Any suggestions? Can I buy email lists from companies? If so, are the demographics targetable?
Or, is being on WordPress helpful? Does it give you accidental traffic?
I am a good writer and have passion about the subjects I want to write about, but if no one finds my blog, I am dead in the water, wasting my time, and affiliate marketing will mean nothing!
None of the info I’ve been sifting through really addresses this important aspect of being successful.
What if I am writing a book that is a story, but I can tie in things like survival tips and such? Would this course work?
Michael D. Irvine says
I am now 70 years young and have led a life that hardly anyone believes until I tell each story.
Everyone in my very large family has been really pushing me hard to write it all down.
Even my Psychiatrist whom I see once a month because of some of these life experiences said that I really need to write this book. He said that it wouldn’t be fair to my family and friends not to let them all know, as well as, my 15 grand kids and 4 and 1/2 great grand kids to let them really know me and what I have gone through and still came out on top against impossible odds.
Additionally, he said it would be a catharsis for me to deal with my past good times, bad times, deadly times, adventurous times and finally the really giant things hardly any people believe.
I thought that instead of just writing the book, which I already have well over hundreds of pages and only half way through, I could just write each event one at a time like the old cliff hangers in the old movies. This way readers will want to see the next one as soon as it comes out.
I just don’t know how far apart I should introduce each story. Once a day, every 2,3,4 or 5 days such that I don’t lose my readers who don’t want to wait too long.
So what do you think of this kind of idea ??
Paul Uduk says
I just stumbled on this post today, thanks to Michelle. I’ve written a couple of eBooks and also run a platform where members learn how to write books. The challenge we face is understanding the launch sequence and the technologies to use. I wish Abby could shed more light on that.