How to Design a Killer Book Cover & Skyrocket Your Book Sales

E. Haldeman-Julius sold 100 million books in less than seven years. He achieved this by using simple and effective book covers based on compelling titles and clean cover design. No fancy titles or design, it was all about simplicity.

What stands between the reader and your book is the cover. If you get it right your book will sell. If you don’t, it won’t. Here’s how to get it right.

5 Crucial Elements of a book cover

  1. Readability; effortless reading.
  2. Size of Text; big is better than small.
  3. Title & Subtitle; should tell what the book is about.
  4. Colour; supports and reinforces the title and subtitle.
  5. Image & Design Approach; make the cover stand out.

In the digital age, every element of the cover should tell something about your book by using:

  • A great keyword-rich title and sub-title
  • A supportive graphic design
  • Striking and bold background colours
  • A good pen name
  • Thumbnail approach

In this way your book stands out; anyone can at a glance tell what the book is about; appeals to emotion; tells a story for Fiction, and promises a benefit for Non-Fiction.

Let’s take a look at 7 tips to help create the PERFECT Kindle book cover, for maximum reader engagement and sales.

Tip #1: Design for Kindle device

For best quality, your image would be 1563 pixels on the shortest side and 2500 pixels on the longest side. This so it doesn’t lose quality when it’s reduced to fit the reading device.

Tip #2: Don’t design it yourself-Outsource it

Avoid this trap many writers fall into. Not because you can’t, but because your are emotionally involved to your work. Follow the 3 step strategy ideal for any author who wants their book to stand out without looking self-published or a book cover template.

  1. Research the right keywords for the title.
  2. Boil down the book idea in no more than a 250-300 word synopsis.
  3. Approach 3 different designers and ask them to focus on simplicity. Choose one.

Tip #3: Design to Sell

This simple concept is overlooked by most writers, book cover designers and even publishers. Complex, cluttered and dull book covers don’t tell the eye what the book is about. They won’t sell. Your book cover should be a call to action: Read ME! Buy ME!

Tip #4: Design to stand out

This is CRUCIAL to your book’s success across all platforms. Your book is competing against two main backgrounds: White for Amazon and Google. Blue for Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. If you use a light coloured background, put a narrow border around it to keep it from getting lost on Amazon and other internet pages.

Tip #5: Use the power of colour for the right niche

Colour has to be bright, strong and emotionally impacting. Colours must match the niche your book is about. For example green is natural, healthy, soothing. Blue is professional and business like.

Tip #6: Use magical words in the title

Use words that trigger reaction. For example for non-fiction; The Truth About; Facts You Should Know; How To, and so on. For fiction use; Life; Love; Sex; The Story of; Dream, and so on.

Tip #7: A simple rule of thumb

Non-fiction use 3-2-1 for Title and Sub-title – Image – Author Name
Fiction use 2-3-1 for Title and Sub-title – Image – Author Name

No reader judges a book by its cover. The only judgement a reader makes based on the cover is whether to buy the book or not. Use the tips above to improve the chances of your book selling.

Feel free to get in touch if you want to discuss further.

Thanks for reading.



About the author: Paul Prifti


My full name is Paulin Prifti and I am based in London, UK. I publish books because books have the power to change lives. They have changed mine.

It doesn’t matter the language you write in. What really matters is your thoughts and feelings. You use words to put your thoughts and feelings together in a simple and clear way. You can write about anything you want. It’s important to make your writing matter.
Now, writing a book is not easy. Yet, it’s hugely rewarding and fun and becomes easier when you have a structure: a beginning; middle and an end. And this is why I like publishing. It gives me the chance to help new writers write better and get published. Make their books matter. And I do this through Paul Smith Publishing

So, if you have written a book or have an idea for one, fiction or non-fiction, I can help you get published. Feel free to get in touch.

This article was first published by Paul Prifti

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