Forget the Boxes: How To Sell Digital Products on Amazon

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Introduction

Did you know that Amazon is not only a place for physical products? It is now possible to sell digital products in the world’s largest marketplace. This means writers, graphic artists, and even musicians can list their pieces in a digital format on Amazon for purchase by millions of customers.

If selling on Amazon is something you are interested in pursuing but not sure where to start, look for an Amazon agency  to get your new Amazon business up and running. An Amazon agent can even manage the day to day running of the Amazon account so you can focus on creating your digital products.

Whether you go at it alone or hire experts, you should have a basic understanding of how to sell your digital products on Amazon – so read on to learn more. You could end up making some serious money off your digital creations.

What Digital Content Can You Sell on Amazon?

Amazon offers plenty of options for aspiring entrepreneurs to make money from their digital creations. Whether you are a writer or graphic designer, here are some of the top digital products you can sell on Amazon:

Books – For those wanting to make a career out of their love of writing, Amazon offers three ways to sell books – two of which are entirely digital. Through Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP), there are two self-publishing options in a digital format and “print on demand.” Both are popular options, and once you become an established writer, it is possible to make a reasonable living.

Music – Amazon offers TuneCore (part of AmazonMusic) for musicians wanting to sell their songs online. The platform allows musicians to upload their songs or albums to reach millions of potential listeners. Once your music is uploaded, it will be made instantly available on Amazon, Spotify, iTunes, Google Play and over another 150 stores worldwide.

Art – If you are a graphic designer or artist with some fantastic designs that would look good on a t-shirt or other item, there is Merch by Amazon. Like KDP, you do not need to have your own inventory to sell products. Instead, you can focus on your art, upload to Amazon, carry out some killer marketing, and get the orders coming in. Amazon looks after the printing and shipping.

Selling Digital Content on Amazon

You may be a very talented digital creator, but can you sell? No matter what Amazon platform you sell on, you will want to make content that people will pay for. So instead of seeking eternal artistic validation, put your commercial hat on and follow these top tips to figure out what content people want before you start creating for an Amazon market.

Do lots of research

Although your work must be original, check out what other creators are doing on Amazon. It is worth seeing what is selling well on Amazon and trying to emulate and improve the concepts. But in case you are new to Amazon, you may not know how to check what is currently trending or validate your creative ideas. The smartest way is to directly look at Amazon by running a search on the topic or kind of content you want to create. Then, check out the top-performing listings and read the reviews to see how you could improve the product.

Create content and gather reviews

Once you have identified the content which will sell well on Amazon, get creating. Try not to worry about making the first version perfect, as this will be your minimum viable product (MVP). You will need as many potential buyers as possible to check out your MVP and start collecting feedback. After gathering sufficient critique, make iterations to your next piece of content based on the feedback you received. You will then need to keep creating content and making improvements each time based on the feedback received.

List your products on Amazon

Prior to starting selling on Amazon, you will need to choose a suitable seller plan which can be either individual or professional. Once you have selected your seller plan, follow these steps to get up and running:

Submit – Once you have designed, written or produced your content, you will need to submit it to the corresponding Amazon program for approval.

Launch – When your content has been approved, you can list your design, song or book.

Advertise – You will need to work hard to advertise your content on and off Amazon to generate sales and become a successful Amazon seller.

The Do’s and Don’ts of Digital Products on Amazon

As with all products sold on Amazon, there are some rules concerning digital content. You will need to be very careful to follow the terms and conditions of the relevant Amazon platforms, so study them hard and find a good Amazon agent to look after compliance for you.

Here are a couple of the things you must and must not do when selling books, music and graphic art on Amazon:

KDP

The primary point to highlight with KDP is that Amazon has a zero-tolerance rule when it comes to books that advertise, promote, misinform, or do not accurately represent their contents. Here are some of the primary areas of the KDP policy to be aware of:

Read through your final work before uploading to Amazon to identify and correct any mistakes. This includes typos, grammatical errors and duplicated text. KDP has a Kindle Previewer tool to double-check everything looks good to go.

Identify and fix any errors in your book before uploading it to the KDP platform. This will include typos, duplicated text and grammatical mistakes. You can make use of the Kindle Previewer to check you have caught everything.

Create accurate metadata so that your book can be found in the Amazon search results. Just be careful not to break the KDP metadata guidelines, as Amazon may take down your content, and the misinformation will result in lost sales. Two of the main rules include not mentioning another book or including URLs.

Make sure your book cover is high-quality and attractive to potential customers. For example, the image should not mention any promotions, not blurry and is not too large to display correctly on the finished digital product.

Upload content to KDP that is Kindle-appropriate. If your work is more of a puzzle genre, colouring book or blank journal, it would likely be better suited to a print-on-demand format.

You will want to ensure your work provides a high-quality reading experience for the buyers. Formatting your book correctly will help boost sales – so avoid issues like single spacing after each paragraph, forced alignment and in-line page numbering. The files should also be uploaded in a DOC, DOCX, or HTML file type.

TuneCore

It is essential to follow the TuneCore style guide to get your music distributed on the platform. For example, if your music’s artwork is not compliant with the formatting requirements, the online music platforms may refuse to sell your content. Your cover art should:

Be uploaded as a PNG, JPG, or GIF image file format

You must own the rights to the artwork and image used

Be square and a minimum of 1600 x 1600 pixels (precisely 1600 x 1600 if selling on Amazon’s On Demand store)

A minimum resolution of 72 dpi

Be in RGB colour mode for both colour and black and white images

If it contains any text, it must include only the release title and the artist’s name and be displayed as entered into TuneCore.

A few of the other rules connected to TuneCore include:

No details of contact information, URLs or pricing

Not advertise any details of a release for physical or exclusive digital products

Reference any digital stores or display their logos

Merch by Amazon

As with the other digital Amazon selling platforms, Merch has stringent selling guidelines that must be closely followed. There is potential for your artwork to reach a massive audience, so it is a good idea not to mess it up and study the dos and don’ts carefully. Here are a few for your reference:

Only use your own original artwork and ensure it does not violate someone else’s copyright or trademark

Never upload designs that are pornographic, exploit children or use profanity

Create artwork that is age-appropriate when planning to sell on youth sizes

There should be no promotion of hate, violence or human tragedy in the designs

Any spelling which is included in the design much match the text in your product listing

Ensure your images are high quality, use RGB colours, 300 dpi print dimensions and a maximum of 25MB

The metadata must be related to your design and not include any request for reviews or contain external contact information

The Takeaway

Amazon can be a fantastic place for artists to sell their pieces digitally. With a strong marketing strategy behind your book, artwork or music, there is the potential for Amazon to sell to millions of buyers. So study those guidelines, get creating and make some money on Amazon.

 

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