Selling iBooks is easier if you learn how to promote them.
If you have books and audiobooks available on the Apple iBooks Store, are you using links to help potential readers buy them?
It is straightforward now because there is no longer any need to create links to the iTunes Store. You only need to use the iTunes Link Maker.
When iBooks became a standalone application on laptops, Apple created a separate store within the iBooks app.
Whether you have published your ebooks with Apple through Draft2Digital, Smashwords or iBooks Author; you can now create links very easily to help your book promotion.
Apple is still the number two retailer by market share for ebooks. So it is well worth the effort to help the millions of iPhone and iPad users, as well as iPod Touch owners, who are buying ebooks to discover your books on the Apple book store.
One benefit of Apple iBooks is that there is no subscription service like Kindle Unlimited. So there is no need to contend with scammers and book stuffers or reduced royalties.
When you sell books and audiobooks, it is always at your listed price. Another benefit is that you can offer free books without any problem at all.
Just set your price to $0.00 on your publishing site. You can set your book to free for as long as you wish.
If you are using links to promote your Amazon books, it is just as easy to build links to promote your Apple books.
But you need to know where to look. You cannot copy a book sales page link like you can on Amazon. This is because there is no book page on Apple.
Your book on Apple is inside the Apple books app, so you need to do things a little differently.
You can make direct links, text links, button links, widgets and banners to add to your website, blog, email and social media posts.
You start by going to Apple’s Link Maker tool page. There is no need to log in or use your Apple id.
The welcome page includes all parts of the iTunes store – Apple Music, App Store, Mac App store, and for authors, the iBooks Store.
The first step is to locate your books in the iBooks library. To do this, enter your author name in the search field and select “books” as the media type.
You will then see all your ebooks and audiobooks in iBooks that you have published.
If you have published more than five books, click on “View More” to see them. If you have only one or two books, you will see other books filling the rest of the five places.
To start making your first link, click on one of your titles.
You have four choices. You can copy the code for a badge, a text link or a small badge to add to your website, blog and book pages.
But right at the bottom is your direct link. Highlight it, or right-click on it to copy it. Then save it somewhere safe so you can use it over and over again..
Click on the link, or enter it in your browser address bar and you will see your book’s Apple sales page.
Your sales page is similar to your Amazon page. There is a buy button, as well as a link to all your other books.
It doesn’t matter if a reader is using an iPad, iPhone, an Android phone or on Safari, Chrome, Firefox or Edge on a PC or Mac.
All of them can click your buy link to open iBooks on whatever device they are using. It’s simple, easy and very effective.
What about on your blog or website?
You can do a lot more with the Apple Link Maker.
What about a widget to go into your blog’s sidebar? Yes, you can do that. The Apple store makes it easy.
Go to the Link Maker page and click on Widget Builder in the top menu. You can then design a widget to suit your site.
First, select “Book List” in the Select Widget Type.
Now add your widget title and description you would like to show with it. You could call it “My Book”, “Top Charts” or “My Top 5”.
To add your books, select “Add/Edit Book List. Four or five is probably enough.
You can style your widget and resize it to suit your site. When you are done, copy the code at the bottom and paste it onto your site.
More than likely, you will use an HTML or text sidebar widget on your site to add the code.
If a widget is not right, a banner ad might be a better option.
You can create banners in all the usual banner sizes of 300 x 250px, 728 x 90px and 180 x 150px. For phones you can select 300 x 50px or 320 x 50px.
Type in your author name and select media type as “books” and genre “all” and then click “Search”.
Now select one of your books, and you can style your banner.
Select the “iFrame” option to create the code for your website, and you are finished.
If you have Adsense on your site, you can replace a Google ad with your own for one of your books.
It is very easy to promote your Apple iBooks, isn’t it? But only once you know about the Apple Link Maker.
I see so many authors and self-publishers promoting the daylights out of their books on Amazon.
But rarely do I see authors promoting their books on Apple. There are millions of people who read ebooks, and they are very easy to target if you know how.
And it is so easy.
Sure, you can use a universal book link to help Apple users find your book. But isn’t it better to give readers an easy to understand and click buy button instead?
If you have any trouble adding the code to your site, you can always use an image and add your book page link. It works exactly the same.
I get so many messages and comments from self-published authors asking the same question. “What more can I do to sell my books?”
When I reply that Apple is a good market to target, the replies are so often, silence. It is hard to fathom why.
Amazon is extremely competitive, with well over six million ebooks and increasing every day.
While Apple is a much more controlled retailer with far fewer ebooks and next to no scammers ripping off your share of the pot.
But you have to take one little extra step to take advantage of the opportunity. For some, laziness and habit make this one little step, a step too far.
However, those authors who do take the tiny step, and learn how to promote their books on Apple, tend to find that sales do start to roll in.
I started my working life as a lithographer and then spent over 30 years in the printing and publishing business.
Originally from Australia, I moved to Switzerland 20 years ago. My days are spent teaching English, writing and wrestling with technology while enjoying my glorious view of the Alps.
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