Ingredients of a best selling book

Have you ever wondered about the secret elements of a best selling book or the top publishing recipes that would turn ordinary new authors into best selling authors?

I know. You think it’s about the name behind the book. Or the content of the book. Or even it’s target audience.

But no. Even though those things are very critical in determining what books becomes a best seller, there’s a lot more to writing a best selling book whether online, offline or anywhere.

And no, it’s not about a great story, valuable lesson or powerful writing style. There’s a lot more to writing best sellers.

And without any waste of time, in the following paragraphs, I will be listing out these important elements that can turn your book into a best selling book. And how you can maximize them to your benefit…

Regardless of whatever you’re writing about, the moment you’re all set out to write a book, you’re about to tell a story.

And if you must tell any story effectively, you have to make it clear, concise and coherent. This is why your story line is one of the most important ingredients of a best selling book.

To create a best seller, regardless of whatever story you’re trying to tell, tell it with a bang. Get your reader so drawn into your story that they can’t wait to turn on the next page.

I have seen this happen for both fiction and non fiction books. And in any case, most of these books are always on the top best seller lists.

Every other recipe you’re going to read here is additional. your storyline is one of the biggest determinants of the success of your book.

To get your book on the top seller list, you have to intentionally make it a top seller story from the get go.

Being able to create an exceptional value for your readers is one of the top ingredients of a best selling book, used by most successful authors.

Yes, your content is important.

Even when you have a great story, an inability to pass on outstanding value in terms of entertainment, information or tell your story in an interesting way can further push off readers from getting across to your book.

As much as possible, your book must pass on great value for your readers if you want to see it on the top sellers list.

Even if you’re writing about a topic as boring as “how to knot a tie or a book as interesting as “Harry Porter”, you want to make it very interesting if you have plans achieve some form of success with your work.

So when you’re getting set to write your book, you want to pay attention to making it informative, educative and entertaining, regardless of your preferred genre.

You want to tell your story in a way that will get your readers sitting on the edge because they are thrilled to see where it all leads.

And in order to get to this point, write with the mindset of getting your readers to say things like “oh I was so entertained, informed or thrilled“, the moment they get to read your work.

One of the most important ingredients of a best selling book is the book title.

As a writer, you have less than 5 seconds to capture the attention of your potential buyer. And one of the most important elements that plays a role during this 5 seconds is your book’s title.

Not only do you have to get the right title for your book, to get a book that sells exceptionally well, you have to get a title that sells. This is very important.

Besides helping your books to sell online, your book title can also get your potential reader to understand what they want, what the book is all about and it can also trigger their interest in the book.

All these plays an important role in helping the reader make a final buying decision on your book.

How to Write a Book Title that Sells

Most times, an author’s choice for a book title will have to depend on their own peculiar situation.

Take for instance, if you’re a new author publishing online, you’ll be more concerned about getting people to discover your book through the search engine…

For this reason, you’ll be more inclined to choose a book title that is in line with popular phrases that your potential buyer will use while searching for content related to your book online.

On the other hand, a more established author with a decent audience may be more concerned about creating a title that will intrigue the audience or create controversy etc.

Notwithstanding these differences, there are certain important elements you’ll clearly notice in almost all best selling books. These includes things like.

Make it Captivating

One of the top ingredients of best selling books is that the title is not just compelling, it easily commands attention without much efforts.

As a potential buyer, you’ll notice that after coming across most best sellers, you’ll feel fascinated, to know more about the book. This is one of the most important quality of any potential best seller.

So, if you’re planning to create a best selling book online or become a best selling author then your first step is to get a catchy title that will easily draw in the attention of your audience, as soon as they come across your book.

Get to Solve a Clear Need

Together with your sub title, your book’s title should be able to identify clearly the need for reading your book.

If your book is about Blogging for instance, with your book title, I should be able to see the specific need that your book will solve, the moment I get to read it. the need I have in which your book will be able to solve, if i get to read it.

With this in mind, if your book title were to be something like, “Beginners Blogging Manual” for example, your sub title should say something like, strategies on how to become a successful blogger etc.

With this, a potential reader will be able to understand what the book is all about. And whether they have need to buy the book or not.

Make it Relatable

If you’re writing a book that’s in a sub niche or targeted at a specific geographic location , don’t keep people guessing whether your book is for them or not.

Make it instantly recognizable or relatable, as soon as the target audience clicks on it. This is very important. So, if you’re creating a book for digital marketers in Nigeria based make it easily recognizable in your book title or sub title that you’re targeting a Nigerian audience.

Doing this makes it easy for your book to reach across to the right target audience more easily, especially if you’re selling online.

Right packaging is another important ingredients of a best selling book that a lot of authors have missed out on.

Packaging is about your book cover design and every other visual part of your book that will be seen by a buyer before they get to buy the book.

Packaging is very important when it comes to book sales. For example, according to a case study, your book cover goes a long way in determining whether a potential buyer will buy the book or not.

I have seen some book covers where the author puts out a design without paying much attention to the color combination, content, and even the target audience.

These things cannot be ignored. They are very important elements that can help you create a great cover design.

So, if you’re really planning on creating a best selling book whether as a beginner or established author, pay attention to your book cover.

Now, you may be asking yourself, why should I even pay attention to my book cover when my content is extremely good?

Thing is, your book cover is the first thing everyone sees before your book content. If your book cover is not captivating enough, a potential buyer may not even have the chance to scan through your content, not to talk about buying your book.

And besides, there are also a handful of authors whose book cover alone has attracted them more sales than the content of their book.

How to Design a great Book Cover

If you’re planning on designing an exceptional book cover, then you’ll definitely have to get some things in place.

And the following are elements of compelling book cover designs you should consider if you really want to design a book cover that stands out.


When it comes to creating an outstanding book cover design, your book content plays a very big role here.

For instance, your content is supposed to set the tone for your book cover. So beyond influencing the overall design, your content will also affect your color selection, the ambience of the design and the major effect the design should have on your audience.

Audience, Picture and Imagery

Another key cover design elements that will affect your cover design is your target audience demographics.

A lot of authors have missed out on this. If you’re writing a book that’s completely targeting a male audience for instance, there are some color combinations you’ll not want to use.

Also, if you’re designing a book cover that’s targeted at a specific religious denomination or sect, there are some kind of pictures, images, symbols etc. that should not be used in your books.

I still remember one book by a popular author, targeted at a female audience. Taking a look at that book, the cover page contained the picture of an almost bare woman, sitting on a slab.

Although the woman was not completely nude, the book title made the cover look so obscene that a some ladies will always have to hide or cover up the book in a different coverage whenever they go out with it in public.

At a point, for the book to be sold in some countries, the book cover had to be changed by publishers in those countries so it can be acceptable there.

Things like this are what you should avoid by all means. Especially as a new author. Because in your own case, you may not even have the chance to have the books make waves.

So you need to have a background knowledge of your audience and find out what will work for them before setting out to design your book cover.

Color Combination

A lot of people are not good at choosing the right color combination that will suit their book design. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise to you if you’re not good at that.

Of course as an author, you don’t always have to be the one to design your book cover. You can get people to do that for you if you can afford it.

On the contrary, where you have to design the book cover by yourself, you have to find a way to design multiple colors and then choose from those design, the best color combination that will capture the idea behind your book, alongside your targeted audience.

While publishing on a platform like Amazon KDP, be sure that your preferred keyword is relevant to your Audience | Photos by fauxels via Pexels

Like i said earlier, designing a stunning book cover will to a large extent influence your book sales.

And these elements are very critical to your successful design of an exceptional book cover.

After your book cover, another important ingredients of a best selling book that will decide whether your book will sell or not is your keywords.

Unlike traditional publishing, keywords play a very important role when it comes to online publishing.

For instance, the keywords you use for your books are going to determine whether potential buyers will find your books when they search for it online.

Where you’re not using the right keywords, your books may not be found easily and this might get to effect your sales in the long run.

The following are the things you should consider before choosing the keywords for your book.

Relevancy to book Content

Is this keyword relevant to the content of my book?

This is a very important question you need to ask yourself before choosing a keyword for your book. Especially if you’re publishing on a platform like Amazon.

You need to be sure that your keyword is in line with the content of your book. You can’t afford to have a keyword that’s different from the idea behind your book.

Relevancy to Audience

Another thing you need to consider is to ask yourself, is this keyword relevant to my audience.

Is it part of the kind of phrases they will type into the search engine, when they are searching for things related to the content of my book?

Again, it is very important you get this right, if you really want to publish a book that sells online.

Using Amazon itself in addition to Google Keyword Tools, you can search for keywords that will work for you.

In whatever you’re doing, be sure that your keywords are not just a collection of words relevant to your book alone but key phrases that will be relevant to what your potential buyer will search for it they wanted to buy something that’s related to your book.

Marketing is one of the major ingredients of best selling books you must keep in mind if you want to write a book that outsells others.

This is one thing any publisher would say to anyone planning to sell their book successfully. As you’d imagine, your marketing strategy plays an important role in the overall success of your book

But then, what’s the right marketing strategy. You’ll also want to ask this question right?

The right marketing strategy is the strategy that will help you sell your books online.

It is a combination of strategies that will get your published books, in front of potential buyers. Without this in place, you’ll not make a lot of sales with your books.

While I will still discuss extensively about promoting your book in a different post, the following are the important strategies that will you promote your book online…

  • Promote on Amazon itself.
  • Promote on Social Media.
  • Promote on your website.

These are the three promotional strategies I’m going to focus on in this post. Like i mentioned earlier, I’ll write on the remaining ones in details, in a separate post.

Now let’s discuss these three in details.

Promote on Amazon

Amazon has a way of helping authors/publishers to promote their books online.

There are both free and paid promotional strategies you can use to promote your books on Amazon. This includes the Amazon KDP select among others.

Talking about the Amazon KDP select, this program allows your book to be promoted by Amazon to it’s subscribed readers, free.

With the KDP select, your books get promoted by Amazon and you get paid some token based on the number of times your book is read.

One thing you should note is that enrolling your book on the KDP select program bars your book from getting published on other platforms, during the pendency of it’s enrollment.

Besides KDP select, there are other ways you can also promote your books on Amazon like through periodic discounts, pre-sales, etc.

There are also paid promotions. All these are not strategies you should use indiscriminately.

You want to test each of these strategies to see the ones that best delivers on your goals then focus on using that one.

Promote on Social Media

As a marketing strategy, you can also promote your book on the social media.

Your social media promotion can be done either as paid promotions via ads or organic promotion through posts and shares.

As usual, you will need to run some split testing to find out what strategies delivers best results for you either on organic promotion or with paid advertisements.

Promote on your Website

Besides promoting your book on the social media, you can also get to promote it on your website.

As usual, this can be done organically, through content marketing, guest blogging etc. or through promoted Google ads.

You can also promote your amazon links button directly on your website or make it possible for people to buy your book online via your website.

You may not necessarily have to use all these strategies at the same time. You’ll have to test the strategies and then focus on using the ones that will give you the optimum results.

Your publishing platform will also play an important role in determining whether your books will sell online or not.

So, before getting started with publishing online, you have to think it out critically; does your target audience have access to the platform you want to publish your book?

A lot of authors will automatically look at publishing on the popular online publishing platforms like Amazon, Smashwords, Okadabooks etc but, in some cases, these platforms may not work for everyone. Especially, if you’re writing non-fiction books.

So, where your target audience is not on this platforms, it might get difficult to sell your books right there.

For you to get to know what platform will work for your audience, you have to first of all sell on these platform, promote the book effectively on these platforms and then test your results.

With this results, you’ll be able to see what platform is giving you the best result and then focus on aligning your strategies with those platforms.

Final Words

Whether you’re well known or you’re just an aspiring author, writing a best selling book is very possible if you’re willing and ready to put in the work.

Together with my team, I have published more than a handful of aspiring authors whose books later became best selling books online because working with us exposed them to all the right strategies.

You can also achieve the same feat for yourself either by working with our team or going out to follow these strategies and get started on your journey to becoming a best seller.

Right now the question is, are you ready to get started on this journey? If yes, you can get started right now by getting in touch with our team here.

Now it’s over to you. What’s your biggest challenge when it comes to publishing online? Let’s hear you.

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Victor Winners

Victor Winners

A Nigerian trained Law graduate and British LL.M candidate, using his widespread experience in tech, law and innovation, to evolve cutting edge and growth driven solutions for brands and businesses in Africa and beyond.As a Law-trained tech expert, Victor brings in over 7 years experience working in the Digital Marketing, SEO, Web Development, Online Publishing, Social Media and Legaltech sectors, to create result driven content and innovative solutions to brands and businesses.Named as one of the top 50 Web Design Influencers Globally, Victor Winners started one of Africa's most widely read blogs on Digital Marketing and Strategy.With this platform, he has impacted the lives of over 2 million readers spanning more than 135 countries in 8+ years

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