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5 Tips to Create the Perfect Book Cover

The cover of your book can make a difference in the overall success of your book.

The purpose of the book’s cover is to grab the ideal reader’s attention, engage the reader, and then lead to buying the book.

Whether your book is sitting on a bookshelf, in a book store online, on your website, or promoted on social media, the purpose of a book cover is to stand out.

3 Steps that People Do Before Buying a Book and How the Cover Influences Each Step

Here are three steps that people often go through before purchasing a book and how the cover influences each step.

1. Notice the Book

The cover’s purpose is to get the ideal reader to notice the book.

If the book is on social media, you want the reader to go from scrolling in their newsfeed to pausing and staring at the book’s cover.

If the book is competing with other books on a bookshelf, you want the reader to go from perusing the shelves to focusing on the book.

2. Engage the Reader

Once you have the potential reader’s attention, the second step is for the reader to learn even more about the book and engage the reader.

There are three steps to engage the reader.

Read the book’s description.

The book’s description gives a brief overview of the book. It expands on the book’s title, which is the big idea of the book and the title of the book.

Read the table of contents

Once someone is interested, they will often open the book to read the table of contents. The table of contents needs to share the topics within the book. The title of each chapter should be beneficial to the reader. The book’s cover should convey the book’s big idea, along with a subtitle, which can be a chapter.

Read Testimonials from other readers

Testimonials are social proof from other readers. They share more insights about the book. They tell what the potential reader can expect if they buy the book.

As the reader invests more time learning about the book. Each level of engagement should lead the reader to the third phase.

3. Purchase the book

The final stage is for the reader to decide whether to purchase the book to read it.If the cover, the description, the table of contents, and the testimonials are in alignment, it can lead the reader to buying the book.

We have discussed how the book cover can influence the stages people often go through before buying a book. Here are five tips for creating the perfect book cover.

Five Tips to Create the Perfect Book Cover

Here are five tips that will help improve the cover of a book. These five things are the book cover needs to attract, inform, tease, stick to genre expectations and pop with color. Let look at each one in more detail.

1. Attracts

Have you ever screeched to a halt in the airport or at a store because a cover catches your eye? Yup, you want that.

2. Informs

Give your reader a little taste of what’s to come. A great book cover conveys the central idea or message for your book.

3. Teases but never spoils

Don’t you despise movie trailers that give away the whole dang movie? A book cover that reveals too much is like that. Your reader doesn’t need–or want–every detail.

4. Sticks to genre expectations

Your book cover is like a brand promise to your reader. You don’t want to package your memoir to look like a horror novel. While you don’t want to look cookie-cutter, you also don’t want your book’s message to be overlooked because the cover threw off your reader’s expectations.

5. Pops with color

A vibrant cover will naturally stand out. Another publisher shared this cool tip: When we look at books on online sites, often we see thumbnail images, which are quite small. If you were to shrink your cover to a thumbnail, would it still attract your eye? When you think about how many of us shop for books using our small phone screens, this can make a big difference.

Developing a cover is a process. I worked with a client who asked a friend to create a cover for his business book. His message was aimed at entrepreneurs and people in business. While the image his friend created was eye-catching, it looked a bit cartoonish. As a result, potential readers initially thought it was a children’s book! Yikes! Quickly we realized we needed to change his cover. After we redesigned it, it was well-received.

So, remember these 5 tips, when creating your perfect book cover. They will help your book’s cover connect with your ideal audience and hopefully sell more books.

Write on!

Kim Eley :^) Founder of KWE Publishing


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