FAQ: How to Upload your eBook to Amazon Kindle

I get asked quite a bit how you upload your finished (and formatted) eBook to Amazon Kindle. Well in this blog post I am going to try and run through the process in very easy terms and screenshots so you can see exactly what you need to do. 

First things first you need to sign-up to Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). If you use Amazon to purchase books you can use the same login details, but you need to sign-up separately to KDP. There are some important things you need to enter before you are able to publish an eBook, these are:

  • Your name and full address details
  • How you want your royalties paid, either by bank transfer (min. £10) or cheque (min. £100)

Once your account is set-up you can then publish your eBook, so you will need to navigate to the Bookshelf.

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1. Click Add new title

2. Enter your book details – you don’t need to complete everything in this section, as you can see some of the fields are optional. If you’re wondering whether to enroll in KDP Select, my suggestion would be to wait until you have published your eBook rather than enrolling immediately, that way you have time to look into the benefits and not be tied into 90 days exclusivity with Amazon when you first start out.

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3. Verify Your Publishing Rights – this is important, if this is not completed correctly it could hold up the review process.

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Publishing rights are the rights you need to publish a book. To publish a book for Kindle through KDP, you must have obtained all rights necessary to publish the digital book from the book’s author and any other content creators, or, if you are the book’s author, you must have retained all of the necessary digital book publishing rights.

If you are publishing a public domain book, keep in mind that the duration of copyright varies between countries, so ensure that you indicate your territory rights accurately. (If your book is in the public domain in one country but not another, you must identify your territory rights accordingly.) Books that consist entirely or primarily of public domain content are not eligible for the 70% royalty option. For full details, terms and conditions see the Pricing page and Terms and Conditions. 

If your book is under copyright and you hold the necessary rights for this content, select “This is not a public domain work and I hold the necessary publishing rights.” If your book is a public domain book, select “This is a public domain work.”

4. Target Your Book To Customers – here you need to choose the categories your eBook will be published under. You can choose one or two categories, but I suggest choosing two to get as much benefit as possible. You also have up to 7 keywords, you need to research these and ensure you put in the top 7 keywords people will use to search for your book.

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5. Upload your Book Cover and Your Book File – the main part, this is where you need to upload your cover and your formatted eBook.  Your cover will be used for the book cover inside your book, the product image in Amazon search results and the product image on your book’s detail page. 

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You need to choose whether you’d like DRM enabled, this is very important, as this cannot be changed once you have published the eBook.

DRM (Digital Rights Management) is intended to inhibit unauthorized distribution of the Kindle file of your book. Some authors want to encourage readers to share their work, and choose not to have DRM applied to their book. If you choose DRM, customers will still be able to lend the book to another user for a short period, and can also purchase the book as a gift for another user from the Kindle store. 

Important: Once you publish your book, you cannot change its DRM setting.

When you come to upload your eBook file, my suggestion is to use a .doc file properly formatted. I have never had any problems using a Microsoft Word (1997-2003) file on Amazon and they convert well. You can upload other formats, but in my personal opinion, the most simplest way is best.

Once you have uploaded the cover and the file, it will start to convert the file:

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It says on the above screenshot that you can move on while it’s converting, but I always wait and check that it’s been converted ok. 

6. Preview the Book – I would say this is one of the most important steps when uploading to Amazon, because this will show you what your eBook will look like when people purchase it for their Kindles. It gives you the option to view it on the Kindle Fire HD, the Kindle Fire, the Kindle, the iPad and the iPhone. By previewing the eBook shows you if you have any formatting issues which you can then go back and fix and upload it again.

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7. Click Save and Continue.

8. Verify your Publishing Territories – you can choose worldwide (my suggestion), or just individual countries.

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How do I identify my territorial rights?

If you hold worldwide rights, choose the worldwide rights option. If you do not hold worldwide rights, identify the specific territories for which you do have rights.

9. Choose your Royalty – this is where you enter the price you want to sell your eBook for, there are two royalty options, 35% and 70%.

How much will I make when my book is sold?

You can choose between two royalty options: a 70% royalty option and a 35% royalty option. For example, for sales in the US, if your book’s list price is between $2.99 and $9.99, you can choose the 70% option. The 35% option is available in the US for books with list prices between $.99 and $200.00. For complete information on royalty options, please see our Pricing Pageand Terms and Conditions.

10. Enter your Price – Amazon makes it easy for you to have the same price across all the different country sites. You enter your price in dollars for Amazon.com and then tick the box which says ‘Set price automatically based on US price’ against the other country sites you want to sell your eBook on and it will convert to the local currency.

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Amazon shows you various figures once you have entered the selling price, these are Royalty Rate, Delivery Costs (these are based on the size of the file you uploaded, so smaller the better) and Estimated Royalty.

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11. Kindle Book Lending – this is something many people ask me about, if you don’t want your eBook to be available in the Lending Library then you are only eligible for the 35% Royalty. To receive 70% Royalty if this is what you chose above then you need to agree for your eBook to be available in the Lending Library.

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12. Click Save and Publish – if you’re happy with all the details you have entered and you have previewed your eBook then you can now click Save and Publish! You can of course save it as a draft and come back to it later. 

Generally Amazon takes between 12 and 24 hours to review your eBook before it’s available to buy on the site. Remember, you can change any of the details you have entered after you have published the eBook. While in review the eBook will still be available to buy but in the original state, only after review will the changes be made. If you have made a huge error somewhere, then you can unpublish the eBook completely while you make the amendments by going back to the Bookshelf, selecting the eBook and click Actions:

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As you can see there are other options here too for editing and viewing your eBook on the different country sites. If you’re enrolled in KDP Select then you can see those details here too.

I hope I have covered everything you’ll need to upload your eBook to Amazon KDP, if you have any further questions then please leave me a comment below.

Comments

  1. I just bookmarked this page for future reference. In case I decided to publish a book on Amazon. Maybe I will.
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