How Ebooks are Great Value and Help You Make Money

Details 24/10/2009 Categories Filoflow.
For a long time, I never valued the concept or content of ebooks and certainly didn't want to pay for them. However, in recent years, the presence of downloadable ebooks on blogs and websites, has exploded to the point of ubiquity - and I'm now a convert. Let me explain.

What Do We Mean by "Ebook"?

Ebooks by definition are digital files. To less frequent users of the web, they're probably understood as the books you'll find on devices like Amazon's kindle or the Sony Reader. Basically, digital e-versions of fiction and non-fiction books found in bricks and mortar stores.

Ebooks are also commonly found on blogs and websites - as pdf files - a common format for most computer users to download and read easily. The subject of these ebooks vary considerably but mostly share the same characteristic in that they're authored independently and without the need of a specialist publishing company's help. Of course, this implies a low barrier of entry and thus the quality of these ebooks also vary.

These independently produced ebooks are the ones that this post is about, for reasons that will become clearer.

Why have Ebooks Grown Common?

1. PDF files are now technically easy to create
Where once specialist software was required in the past, most software today (e.g. Microsoft Word) is capable of exporting written documents as pdf files.

2. Ebooks grow alongside blog websites
Ebooks can be an extension of a blog website, particularly one that's focused on a niche and a purpose. For example, beekeeping. As the number of blog websites has grown over the years, resulting from both personal efforts and professional ventures, the concept of the ebook has also grown.

Ebooks as Product

The perceived value of an ebook is elevated over content such as on a blog website. Independently authored, the creator of an ebook often distills their knowledge into the form of a digital book. The result becomes a product - an asset with which the owner can garner more influence over the net, a place in which information is the currency.

Ebooks as Marketing and Self-Promotion

Ebooks become cohesive and self-containing tomes, which depending on its content, ranks higher to potential readers who can "take away" the item without further commitment to the author or website from which it came. Authors often pour more energy and effort into the creation of ebooks simply to increase their value as much as they can.

Similarly to print books, the resulting efforts can often garner admiration from readers and potential clients, impressed with the author's ability to put together a written product of value. The author can easily become an "expert" at this stage. Readers take this impression away with them and pass on their views to their friends and colleagues.

The author of ebooks elevate their own professional image as well as provide an easy way for people to perpetuate this image.

How Ebooks Make Money

With the ease at which ebooks can be created as products, and being essential tools for marketing and promotion, its not difficult to see why they've exploded in popularity all over the web.

Owners of online content are cottoning on to ways of making money on the web and have done for years and selling an ebook information product is one of them and a pretty effective one at that.

Cutting the publishing company middle man cuts the hassle and the cost, and combined with little financial investment upfront, the development of ebooks as a form of making money online is practically all profit.

However, ebooks aren't a get-rich-quick route to fortune. Customers won't buy ebooks unless there is a perceived value to them. Sales happen in several ways, some of which include referrals, reviews and well-written sales copy, in addition to good old fashion timing when it comes to marketing campaigns.

There are single page sales sites which convert as well as blog websites with plenty of content and loyal readers. The key feature they share is trust. The content of ebooks has a perceived value if the customer also trusts the quality of it. So therefore, selling ebooks alone won't be an effective money making method unless they're backed up with further information that demonstrates the quality within. But that's ok as this often means that lots of information is also given away for free.

Are Ebooks Really Worth Buying?

This is ultimately down to you personally, but here are some points to consider:

1. The Value of Information
Ebooks most commonly offer information (as opposed to fiction) which can help improve your own skills and knowledge. Would you pay for this information?

2. Information Packaged Conveniently for You
Often, the information itself can be found online for free as well, but you may have to spend time searching and collating the information to get to the same value you perceive the ebook would give. Would you pay for this convenience?

3. Gauging the Quality
Background information on ebooks would help you decide how good the quality of the content is. Customer testimonials may be enough for you although if the ebook is the product of a long-running blog that consistently delivers timely, quality posts, you can easily find out and read the level of quality yourself. Is the quality good enough or do you trust the testimonials presented to you?

4. The Promise of Making Money
Popular ebooks on sale typically outline methods for making money online. With the above three points in mind, would you invest in the purchase of a money-making ebook, ready to invest more time in putting the scheme to use?

5. The Price of the Ebook
Ebooks prices vary considerably, much more so than print books, with some selling for a few US dollars up to others costing almost a hundred US dollars. With ebooks at the cheaper end of the scale, the four points to consider above are less vital with a much lower risk of disappointment. The final decision lies in your perception of the value of the ebook equaling or exceeding the price you have to pay.

The Psychology of Making a Purchase

Making financial transactions on the web has historically been fraught with security issues though has still grown in popularity. Increased awareness about safety, in conjunction with the convenience of an online transaction has helped. However, this will still be a consideration for some.

Personally, making transactions has never been an issue, but I held off buying ebooks as I couldn't possibly bring myself to spend money on information that I perceived to be freely available elsewhere on the web. I've since converted, for the reasons below.

Why You Should Buy Ebooks

The decision to buying ebooks simply rests on the value the ebook gives. You would be buying information that you want. Assuming the quality of the content is there, the price can also be offset against any any time you would spend searching for similar content elsewhere. If you can work out your hourly rate then the value can be easily calculated. Not to mention the convenience of instant gratification.

If your intended ebook purchase is very cheap, you may find yourself spending more time than necessary in making a decision. Depending on the price, it could also be comparable to ephemeral daily spending such as coffees, cigarettes and perhaps anything else that isn't good for you!

Finally, most ebooks online are sold by individuals, or minipreneurs writing about their expertise. People like me and you. Buying from them supports the little guy and in some cases enables them to continue doing what they love including also giving away free information that backs up their ebooks.

How Ebooks Can Make YOU Money

The point to take away in all this is that buying ebooks is not necessarily going to waste your money and in most cases, will provide useful content at a low price. Reading ebooks can also inspire you to write your own and forge a path to an online income.

Alternatively, or in conjunction with self-authoring, many other ebooks can also be sold as an affiliate product. If you believe in someone else's work, you could try reselling it for a cut of the profits.


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