How to Make Money Selling Books on Amazon (5 Ways)

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Do you love books and everything to do with them?

Then one interesting avenue for you to explore in terms of an online business is Amazon. If we asked you to come up with a few ways to sell books on Amazon off the top of your head, you’d probably only be able to think of writing them.

While that is one of the most profitable ways, it’s certainly not the only method. To demonstrate to you all the creative strategies you can use, we’re going to discuss 5 ways to make money selling books on Amazon.

These are things that we’ve actually tried ourselves, so we can confirm for you that they work. We’ll start by telling you what the benefits are.

If you’re not in the mood for reading, click the video below to hear us talk about selling books on Amazon.

Why Sell Books on Amazon?

First and foremost, selling books on Amazon can be a pretty simple way of making money. And it’s not necessarily just the pocket change kind of money, either. Our Kindle Publishing business has made almost $70k in the past five months alone, and we’ll prove it to you:

Selling Books on Amazon: Our KDP Income for 2020 so Far

The above screenshot shows our Kindle earnings from our top books. We’ll explain more how we did this later on in this post.

Money isn’t the only reason you should get into books on Amazon, though. We’d like to think that there’s an online business model that can suit pretty much anything you’re passionate about, and this is obviously perfect for book lovers.

Beyond that, for many of the income earning strategies we’re about to discuss, you don’t even need to leave your house. You can do almost all of this remotely, provided you have an internet connection.

5 Ways to Make Money Selling Books on Amazon

Book Arbitrage

Like retail arbitrage, book arbitrage means that you find a cheap product (specifically books), mark up the price, and sell them on Amazon.

When we first started doing this, we would go to thrift stores and buy books for extremely affordable prices. Usually, thrift stores have book sections with books on sale for as little as 25 cents. If you’re good at bargaining, you might even be able to bargain for a deal, like 100 books for $10.

It’s also possible to buy books from libraries. Some libraries will even give away books for free, meaning no up-front investment on your part.

For the time being, as businesses are largely locked down, it might not be the most feasible business strategy. Even if a store was open, you may not want to get in close quarters with other people while you hunt for books. Of course, this won’t always be the case.

Once you’ve got some books listed on Amazon, your average profits will likely be around $4-5 per sale.

We’d get a book for maybe around 50 cents and end up selling it for about $9.99. Again, it isn’t the most efficient method out there, but it’s cheap, easy, and takes little business knowledge to do.

This is a great choice if you have little money to invest in a business right now.

Read Also: Dropshipping vs FBA

Coloring Books

One of the first types of books we sold on Amazon was coloring books. We started doing this around 2014, and it took no monetary investment on our part.

We designed coloring books with some software or drew parts of them ourselves. Using Amazon Kindle Publishing and Create Space, we were able to get these published as print-on-demand paperbacks. (Note: Nowadays, you would just publish them as Kindle Paperbacks.)

In just the first few months, we made around $10,000 because coloring books were very popular at the time. We can’t guarantee they’re as popular now, but with more people staying at home, for the time being, it’s still an option worth exploring.

Several years later, we’re not quite making $10k a month on them anymore, but we’re still getting a couple of hundred dollars or so. We haven’t been doing anything else with them. The deposits just come in every so often.

Word Searches/Puzzle Books

Selling Books on Amazon Tip: A side benefit to making puzzle books is that you can be confident the product you’re selling is going to be good for the mental health of your customers. Not only does doing puzzles help keep your mind sharp, but it helps people relax.

Like coloring books, word searches are another way to use software for generating books to publish on Amazon. Also like with the coloring books, you need to make these available as paperbacks. You can’t do a word search if you’re viewing it as an e-Book, after all.

We’ve tried this method out, too, and while it wasn’t as profitable as coloring books, we do still make a little off of our puzzle books. Furthermore, it didn’t take much effort on our end to use the software to generate our own word searches.

Combine this with a little research into what people are looking for by checking Google or Amazon autocomplete suggestions. You’ll be able to make puzzle books for trending topics without breaking a sweat.

You’ve got nothing to lose this way, as well as with making coloring books. The only thing you really stand to lose is time.

A side benefit to this is that you can be confident the product you’re selling is going to be good for the mental health of your customers. Not only does doing puzzles help keep your mind sharp, but it helps people relax.


At one point, we made a fitness journal. We don’t mean that we wrote a comprehensive book of our own journal entries and published it.

Rather, we made a blank journal for other people to fill in. It was a mostly empty book formatted so they could document their goals and progress. We designed the way the pages would look, and then just put it up on Amazon.

Similar to word searches, this wasn’t our most profitable venture, but we’d still make around $50 a month this way. At certain times of the year, like New Year’s Eve, the sales for our fitness journal would suddenly skyrocket.

Keep in mind that this was with little or no promotion at all on our part, too.

Don’t feel like you’re limited to fitness journals. People use journals for all kinds of things aside from writing traditional diary entries. There are journals for planning, journals for reaching goals, journals for tracking pregnancies – the list goes on. The sky is the limit.

Writing Fiction

Selling Books Tip: Writing and publishing fiction books via Kindle Publishing is, by far, one of the greatest ways to make a profit on Amazon. Fiction fans have an endless appetite for content, and you can keep tapping into it over and over again.

We truly saved the best for last when it comes to this guide.

Writing and publishing fiction books via Kindle Publishing is, by far, one of the greatest ways to make a profit on Amazon. This is something we’ve been doing for a while, and it’s been a successful venture for us. Because we’ve enjoyed it so much, we’ve actually created a Passive Publishing Profits course to help beginners learn and master what we do.

There are several reasons why fiction is a phenomenal way to go. For one thing, unlike with non-fiction books, readers will constantly demand more fiction. You need only look at the screenshot of our income to see that.

As an example, say you’ve read a biography on a historical figure or celebrity. Unless you’re conducting some really in-depth research or you’re a huge fan of the person in the biography, you’re not likely to buy another book on the topic.

On the other hand, if you’ve just finished reading an amazing sci-fi novel, there’s a greater chance you’ll be hungry for more. Fiction fans have an endless appetite, and you can keep tapping into it over and over again.

That doesn’t mean you can throw together a book about anything and just wait for the money to roll in, though. You will need to spend time researching which niches are most popular by looking at what’s selling in Kindle’s top books.

Romance and sci-fi are fantastic categories to get into. The audience for these genres is massive and ravenous for more content to consume.

In our business, we hire writers to complete the books for us. However, if you have the time and the skill, you can save a little on overhead expenses by writing the books yourself.

Wrap Up

We hope that you’ve learned that many different things can be turned into an online business – including your love for books. One of our beliefs is that owning an online business can even be better than a job.

These days, Amazon is the largest platform for selling books. You don’t need to be a creative type to do it, either. Generating puzzles or coloring books using software, or reselling cheap books from thrift stores, are things you can do even if you’re not the best writer.

And if you’re able to invest in it, you can even hire people to write full-length novels for you.

The bottom line is, making an income off of Amazon with books doesn’t have to be something reserved for the next bestselling author. You can do it, too.

For more information on how we built our Kindle Publishing Business, you can take a look at our Passive Publishing Profits program.

We also offer courses on other business models in our portfolio. You can read about it further in our free Online Assets Playbook, or you can check out our Instant eCommerce Assets course.

Learn how to Build $1,000,000 in Online Assets Using High Ticket Dropshipping

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