7 Simple Mistakes That Will Stagnate Your Book Sales (And How to Avoid Them)‍ By William Opar

7 Simple Mistakes That Will Stagnate Your Book Sales (And How to Avoid Them)‍ By William Opar

If you’ve been selling books online for some time now, then you must have noticed that things are changing rapidly. And, simple mistakes (that can be avoided) can actually stagnate or ruin your book sales.

In addition, the strategies that worked for authors just a couple of years ago no longer hold true today. So, if you continue with the stone age strategies, you risk losing track of your book sales.

This article gives you all the insider tips on how to avoid stagnation, and drive your book sales forward by focusing on seven simple mistakes commonly made by authors who sell their books online.

Simple Mistake #1: Focusing On the Wrong Audience

Knowing your target audience is the most important step in any successful marketing strategy. You need to understand your target audience, their needs, their pain points, and how you can solve their problems.

If you have a clear picture of your audience in your mind, it will be easier to create content that resonates with them – and you’ll be able to drive more book sales.

For instance, if you’re publishing a book about health, your target audience is people who want to improve their health and fitness. So, displaying your health and fitness book to romance or sci-fi fans would be pointless.

Your potential readers will be able to identify with your books only if those books address their pain points, or solve their problems.

Simple Mistake #2: Having No Marketing or Promotion Strategies

When you promote your book without a proven marketing strategy, chances are that you’ll waste a lot of time and effort.

Worrying about how to get book sales isn’t enough; you must have a marketing strategy in place.

There are many ways to promote your book and drive book sales. You can host book giveaways, organize online and offline events, use social media marketing, guest post on other blogs, get reviews, and much more.

Simple Mistake #3: Relying Too Much On Free Marketing Channels

Many authors are under the impression that their books will sell like hotcakes without any effort. This is a huge mistake.

While it’s true that your books will reach a wider audience the longer they are on the market, you can only maximize your reach by using appropriate marketing channels.

Free marketing channels are worth using for marketing, but just from the word “free,” these marketing channels may not give the best results. It becomes even more challenging to create any level of commitment for marketing since what you’re offered is a “free gift.”

Instead, you should focus on the marketing channels that drive the most results, and have the highest conversion rate. You should use free marketing channels to drive traffic to your book’s sales page, but you should use paid channels to close the deal.

Don’t rely too much on free marketing channels as they’re usually less effective than paid marketing channels.

Simple Mistake #4: Designing An Unprofessional Book Cover

Even though a good cover design isn’t a guarantee of book sales, it does play a crucial role in increasing your sales. A professionally designed cover speaks volumes about your book and its author. It tells the reader what the book is about, who the target audience is, the genre, and much more.

A poorly designed book cover, on the other hand, says nothing. It’s just a jumbled mess of words that have no meaning whatsoever. It will not only affect your sales negatively, but it will also affect your Amazon ranking negatively as well.

A poorly designed cover can cost you dearly as it will not only drive away potential customers but also potential reviewers as well.

Are you struggling to design a professional book cover? WritersWeekly provides you with 7 Book Cover Design Secrets That Will Drive Sales. Read and take action massively and you’ll see a good return on investment.

Simple Mistake #5: Using the Same Ad Over and Over Again

You should keep your ads fresh and interesting. If you’ve been running the same ad for a couple of months now, then it’s time to change it. People are easily bored, and if you keep running the same ad repeatedly, you’re only going to annoy them. Your potential readers don’t want to be bored by the same ads daily.

They want fresh, new ads that keep them engaged and coming back for more. Keep your ads interesting by varying their length, title, image, and offer. You can also try rotating two or more ads simultaneously, and let your readers decide which ad they like most.

In addition, incorporate video ads in your book marketing strategy. Why? Statistics show that video ads increase sales by 35%.

Simple Mistake #6: Lack of Quality Editing and Proofreading

You’re about to publish a book that millions of readers will read so you must put 100% of your effort into making it as perfect as possible.

The content of your book should be flawless and error-free. The grammar must be flawless and error-free as well. Your readers will judge you and your book by their first impression.

If they notice errors in your book, they’ll assume that you’re careless, and lose trust in your words.

Would you want to be the laughing stock of the publishing industry because your book is riddled with errors? I believe you just shouted “NO” in the background.

So, consider employing an excellent editor and proofreader to ensure your book is as perfect as possible.

Simple Mistake #7: Over-Reliance on Social Media Marketing

Social media is one of the best platforms to drive traffic to your sales pages and generate sales, but you must use it wisely to avoid stagnation.

As an author, you don’t have sole control over social media platforms – the social media platform operators are at liberty to regulate your content visibility.

So, authors should explore more self-owned marketing platforms like email marketing (creating an email list) or starting a personal blog. Social media should be used to drive traffic to your blog (which is your online bookshop) while your blog’s content should be compelling to drive sales.


Now that you know what mistakes to avoid, it’s time to focus on what you should do to drive your book sales forward. You must be persistent, focused, and consistent to get the most out of your book sales. You must also be willing to learn, adapt, and improve your sales process as you go.

With these tips, you’ll be able to avoid stagnation, and drive your book sales forward. Ready? Go publish a book and drive more sales!


William Opar is an expert Content Writer and Blogger who helps brands to grow their businesses and earn real money. He’s a freelance contributor to The Penny Voice, WritersWeekly, FreelancerKenya, Medium.com, and a savvy writer on Upwork. Feel free to contact him for high-quality freelance writing services. Get in touch via LinkedIn.



Angela is not only the publisher of WritersWeekly.com. She is President & CEO of BookLocker.com,
a self-publishing services company that has been in business since 1998. Ask her anything.