5 Reasons to Self-Publish on Amazon (even if you give away your ebook for free)


People are making a lot of money self-publishing on Amazon Kindle.

S.J. Scott made $40,000 in monthly profit on his Kindle e-books in 2014.

Barry Eisler has literally made millions self-publishing on Amazon.

I’ve written kindle e-books* and have earned some passive income on these books (check out my income reports for more information about our earnings).

Though my focus is blogging, not book writing, I believe anyone can make a living on Kindle if they’re willing to put in the work.

Here are a handful of reasons why I think self-publishing is a good idea even if you don’t plan on becoming a career author.

1. Self-publishing establishes authority on a subject.

ebook authority

Regardless of your niche or career path, having a published book gives you credibility that is hard to otherwise obtain.

Even if your book is a dud, you will always have the ability to add “Author of [book title]” as a tagline to anything you do or create.

Also, writing a book helps you educate yourself on your niche.

As long as you put in the effort to make high quality content, you will be seen as an authority on your subject.

However, the concept of writing a book intimidates many people because of the length of writing most associate with the word “book.”

The good news is that e-books can be as short as a blog post and still sell well.

Just check out Amazon’s short stories section* and you’ll see that there’s plenty of room for shorter content in the e-book marketplace.

To sum it up, as long as your e-book is high quality, it will increase your influence in your niche.

2. Amazon’s author page provides you with an RSS feed that can drive traffic back to your blog.


If you don’t have a blog, stop everything else and start one right now!


Because blogging is an outstanding way to establish authority in your field, network and find like-minded people who share your passion, and build a brand that could quite possibly turn into a full-time career.

How do you start a blog?

First, get Bluehost web-hosting.*

It’s affordable and simple to use.

Plus, 3 of the highest earning bloggers recommend Bluehost as their web host of choice including Pat Flynn, Michelle Schroeder-Gardner, and John Lee Dumas.

Once you have a blog, you can put your RSS feed URL into your Amazon author profile.

Every time you publish a new blog post, your Amazon author page will update with a link to your blog post, which will help you drive qualified traffic.

Though this might sound complex, it’s as easy as copying and pasting a link from your blog to your Amazon author page.

3. Amazon helps build a following among audiences with high commercial intent.

commercial intent

Did you know that surveys show that 44% of consumers go directly to amazon when searching for a product to purchase?

In marketing speak, this means that Amazon users have high commercial intent (they really want to buy stuff).

So when you build a fan-base among Amazon users through your e-book, you are building an audience of people ready and willing to purchase content from you.

These kinds of people are invaluable to bloggers and internet marketers because they’re the audience you’ll most likely be able to turn into customers.

4. E-books can earn you income (even if you give them away for free).


Of course, one of the biggest benefits of selling on Kindle is that you can make money.

But you can still make cash even if you make your e-book free.


1. Include a page in your e-book that drives people to a lead capture on your blog.

The best internet entrepreneurs say that “the money is in the list,” which means your business will derive the majority of its sales through its email subscribers.

If you can drive readers to a lead capture on your blog and get them to sign up for your email list, it’s highly likely these subscribers will turn into customers of whatever you’re selling.

2. If your book has references or footnotes, link them to a blog page with affiliate links.

Putting affiliate links in your e-book is against Amazon’s terms of service.

But if you drive people to your blog with your e-book links, you’re of course free to use affiliate links on your blog.

This is exactly what Matt and I did with our second book.

All our references lead to this page, which allows us to easily update broken links without having to publish a new version of our e-book as well as post affiliate links that can earn us revenue.

3. Use an Amazon affiliate link to link to your book.

Amazon affiliate links work in such a way that if someone clicks through your link to Amazon and makes a purchase (of anything, regardless of the product you linked to) within a certain amount of time after clicking that link, you receive a commission for the sale.

So when you use an affiliate link to your free e-book and someone buys something else on Amazon after clicking your link, you earn a commission on the sale.

This is a great way to make affiliate income free free content.

5. E-books can really help people.


It’s easy to forget this, but e-books can change people’s perspectives and lead to real change.

If you diligently create excellent content, odds are there are people who will find your writing immensely valuable.

Matt and I underestimated this possibility when we wrote our e-books.

We expected to be writing to a fairly limited audience at first.

So when we started receiving gleaming Amazon reviews and emails from our e-book purchasers telling us how our content had really helped them, we were overwhelmed with gratitude and excitement at how we impacted lives.


Writing e-books, and producing great content in general, is hard work.

In fact, if you’re considering writing an e-book but don’t plan on going above and beyond when it comes to quality, you probably shouldn’t write one.

That said, if you’re willing to put in the effort to make excellent content, there’s no reason you shouldn’t self-publish on Amazon, build your credibility, and maybe even use it to make money.

What do you think?

What are some other reasons to write e-books?

I’d love to hear about them in the comments!

In the spirit of full disclosure, links marked with an asterisk are affiliate links, which means that I may receive a commission if you decide to purchase anything through the link. You will not pay more when buying a product through my link. In fact, sometimes I am able to offer a lower price (or bonuses) not available elsewhere. Your support in purchasing through these links empowers more people worldwide to blog with less worry and less hassle and enables me to continue to provide free blog content and to provide for myself and loved ones. Thank you! 🙂