If You Use Twitter Marketing Can It Help You Sell More Ebooks?

Does Twitter Help Sell Ebooks

Twitter is excellent for author promotion, but does Twitter sell ebooks?

Twitter has become the go-to social media platform for self-published authors over the years.

Perhaps this happened because both self-publishing and Twitter launched at roughly the same time.

Or maybe it is the immediacy and ability to promote a product on Twitter quite blatantly.

Twitter book promotion

Twitter is a better fit than other social networking platforms that constrain or demand payment for promoting a product.

For whatever reason, Twitter has definitely become seen as the essential platform for self-published authors.

But is Twitter marketing effective in delivering what authors want? Book sales. Does Twitter sell ebooks?

I can only speak from my own experience.

I have a substantial Twitter following and use both Twitter Analytics and Google Analytics.

These give me access to a reasonable amount of data from my marketing campaigns to use to correlate against the sales of my books.


Measuring a Twitter marketing strategy

The image below is an overview of my Twitter account for 28 days. The critical number is the profile visits.

These are visits to my Twitter profile page from a Tweet. 17,000 is a good number, of course, but how many then click the link through to my website?

Twitter statistics

For the same period, here are the statistics for my site visits from Google Analytics for my website.

Twitter (t.co) is clearly leading the way with about a 15% conversion rate of profile visits to site visits.

This is a great conversion and says a lot about the power of Twitter for promotion, and especially for bloggers.

google analytics statistics

But what about a single book promotion Tweet. Do people click on the book buy links?

twitter impressions

This is where promotion is one thing, and book sales conversions are another.

Only three Twitter users clicked through to my book on Amazon.

But 4,435 people saw the tweet, and 43 people engaged with it.

That is a really a very small and disappointing conversion rate.

It is no surprise to discover that I did not sell one copy of this book on the day of this particular tweet.

But, three people did go to my book page on Amazon. So it had a small positive result.

My book sales have remained steady.

But I have never seen a correlating jump in book sales when I increase the number of my book tweets. I have tried this experiment many, many times.

But I do believe that book tweets can still be useful as a means of building awareness. Think of roadside billboards.

No one rushes off to buy a product when they drive past one, but they do build product awareness. People remember.

So from this logic, keep in mind that tweets with images (book covers) attract more than ten times the engagement over text tweets.

It can really help to reinforce awareness. It may convert the next time a potential book buyer readies to make a purchase.


So what does this small sample of my Twitter data prove?

It proves that Twitter is a fantastic promotional platform.

It is very effective in attracting people to information, such as blogs, articles, and creating awareness of your books.

But it is, like most social media platforms, not great as a means of direct selling.

So use Twitter to promote yourself as an author and encourage people to interact and get to know you.

As for selling books to strangers is concerned? Nope. It doesn’t work well at all.

But, in building awareness and product recognition, it’s a winner.

So in the long term, Twitter should have a positive effect on your book sales as long as you are patient and don’t expect instant results.


More reading: What You Need To Do Before You Self-Publish A Book

Derek Haines

A Cambridge CELTA English teacher and author with a passion for writing and all forms of publishing. My days are spent writing and blogging, as well as testing and taming new technology.

Avatar for Derek Haines

18 thoughts on “If You Use Twitter Marketing Can It Help You Sell More Ebooks?

  • Avatar for Caitlin
    February 4, 2021 at 7:18 pm

    This is EXACTLY the information I’ve been looking for. Thank you! You are a much-needed guide in the wilderness. Been tearing my hair out for a week trying to unravel this Gordian Knot!

  • Avatar for Michael Embry
    August 3, 2019 at 4:10 pm

    Spot on! I’ve used Twitter on several of my books, and while I don’t have the analytics you used on your book, I’ve never seen an uptick in sales after a flurry of tweets, either from me or purchased from a so-called promoter. I agree that it’s probably good for author/book awareness but that’s about it. I use my latest novel as my pinned tweet and that’s as far as I’m going with it since people checking out my profile will see it. Furthermore, Twitter, to me at least, seems more like a political/opinion platform with few folks going there to discover books. Thanks again for your timely post.

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