Book Writing, Self Publishing, and Marketing Coach

10 Website Tips Every Non-Fiction Author Needs to Succeed

Many coaches and self help experts come to me for their book projects, but I also coach on websites that sell and brand you. I see so many unnecessary mistakes. I know, I’m on my 5th revision. I’m constantly optimizing and updating my own website and would love to share with you some powerful tasks we did to boost clients and sales.

But first, to set up a website that offers books and services, you need to agree it’s for attracting and keeping clients. In other words, a site that sells. No shame in that.

One question came to me in my book group at LinkedIn:

Q. “How can I create a new or revise my website/blog to sell more books and attract new qualified clients (not lookie loos)?”

Your site must work in tandem with your online promotion. It must build your book platform. What good does it do to tweet if your best audience doesn’t get a link to your web subscription to be come part of your business gold – your email database. You must coordinate all of this.

Follow these important steps that guarantee lifelong income for you at your site:

1. Know your targeted audience before you write your website or blog.

This is what I coach all clients on as the first step to book writing and promotion success for anything, including their books. Do you know your book’s and website’s best audience?

2. Make one website for one audience.

Don’t hodgepodge with your business and your personal growth book at the same site, unless you are a personal/life coach. Create your site around a theme.

Write a letter to your #1 best audience; name it specifically, not generally. For example:

“Dear Small Businesses,

Many of you want to write a book to brand and promote your business. When you educate your audience, you are really educating and promoting in a positive way to attract them to your site and your book.

In my ‘Write your eBook or Other Short Book Fast!’ you can get all the answers you need to not only write engaging chapters that will get finished, so you have a ready to go sales team to give your testimonials and word of mouth, but to know all your pre-marketing needs to put inside and outside the book to brand you as the expert. Most new authors ignore the 9 hot-selling points as they write their books. Such a shame, because they need this know how to write a much better book that solves their audience’s problems or challenges.”

3. Know your site’s purpose BEFORE you write it.

Taylor your web copy to your primary audience.

If you didn’t do this step, you can always do a little update. My site is on its 5th revision, so don’t think your original site will work so well. The web changes every minute, so be on top of your web marketing. Educate yourself and get a little feedback on what isn’t working and what will work.

This is just the beginning. If you want hands on how to’s for your site update, consult a writing coach before your webmaster.

4. Set up or update your book/business web or blog site frequently.

Offer brand new content that your targeted audience wants. This will encourage new subscriptions and bring back current followers who are more likely to buy from you.

5. Put only fresh, original content up on your blog and site.

Why compete with other website’s syndicated content. Why bore your readers with copy they already read?

With original content, you’re more likely to get ranked higher on search engines like Google. That means you are getting maximum, FREE, TARGETED VISITORS who stay longer on your site. All the more opt-in and sales conversions for you!

Maybe you noticed my blog has new weekly material to help authors and small businesses make their book project a huge success. Check out these tips to speed up your blog writing for quality content.

6. Change your keywords.

We have changed our keywords to long tail, low competition phrases, and we switched them out as necessary after we gather enough data. You need to use phrases that people on Google and other search engines type in to get their information. That’s a HUGE part of your website’s success. Many of my site’s pages are on page one of Google search results for our targeted keywords. For example, the keywords “book coaching,” “how to write a book outline,” and “how to write a book fast.” These keywords and your content show you as the”go to” person they should come to when ready for your service.

7. Offer useful free content at your site to gather email opt-ins.

Include free reports, a newsletter, videos, blog articles, and even teleseminars. If you don’t collect emails from your audience, you drop the promotion ball. Think at least two or three offers.  Your best audience will come back to you for answers to solve their challenges when they are ready. These offers build our email database exponentially. We send great information and offers to our list weekly.  I write the promotions and my webmaster schedules them.

The point is: To get more sales you need more opt-in signups for free reports, your blog, and your free teleseminars. Just look at the rest of my site to see what I offer.

8. Write sales copy with benefits and testimonials for each product…

Or seminar, or coaching package. Many coaches and self help gurus don’t want to be salesy, but they do need to write useful marketing content with their target audience in mind to attract them to their service. Call it sharing, not sales if you like. “Welcome to my site” doesn’t motivate.

9. Share your great content with social media websites!

My sales and opt-in conversions went up 25% once I started becoming active on Facebook and in LinkedIn groups. Make sure you’re not committing these ’7 Deadly Sins’ of online networking.

10. Keep track of your website progress.

I track my website data using Google Analytics. I know since I began using the strategies above, people started staying longer on my site (lower bounce rate), which you all should pay attention to. I check Analytics monthly and adjust my online marketing accordingly.

Always ask yourself, what’s working and what’s not? Correct it if you do want more business and book sales.

Sharing is Caring!

Do you have some great website business tips you’d like to share? Please leave a comment below!

  • Dr. Deana

    Thank you Judy for this helpful information. It appears I have to get on board with #4.

  • Judy Cullins

    Deanna, Sorry to be tardy in this. How is your website going? If you need to ask a question, be sure to do it. You want results.. That's what my business is all about.

  • Lynn Baber

    Ah yes, the perennial keyword issue. Good basic list of 10 ideas, but none that I had not heard before. BUT - I was reminded that I have not mastered most of them and still have much to do. Especially about keywords…
    Thanks for the reminder and kick in the seat.

  • Debby

    Hi Judy,

    Thanks so much for great info! Altho, you've been sharing great info for a long time!!

    I know, I mean I KNOW I have to get a web site, but the thought of doing it … just all that work … it's very overwhelming. I'd rather just use a blog. Why couldn't I just do that? It would be easier … less complicated … and frankly, as a writer with ADD, more fun!

    Thanks for all of your great articles!

  • Judy Cullins

    Debby, As with anything, you need to be professional if you want to sell a book or service. A website costs around $700 depending. You blog should be part of your business site. But as one fellow ancy person, I just get up from computer and walk, yoga or eat-haha . Do what you love and do best and hire the rest.

    To learn how to write a salesletter for each product, go to my landing pages and copycat mine. They are engaging and sell a lot. You need that opt-in list to sell to over time.

  • Judy Cullins

    Lynn, If you get one or two points from a blog, I'm happy. Yes, I'm the reminder… haha.

  • Karen Cioffi

    Great list of website elements needed to be on the road to success. Numbers 1 - 3 are essential and can save you lots of headaches down the road!

  • Karin

    I couldn't agree with you more! In fact, I could have written this article myself. As the Founder of Smart Author Sites, I deal with author mistakes all the time and have to guide clients in the right direction. Your tips are a great resource to help them avoid those mistakes in the first place.

  • Judy Cullins

    Thanks for your comment Karin. I think the same. As a full service book coach, I also help clients write their website so it sells them, do the right marketing plan fo their books that includes a short ebook, a blog, and submitting all to social media they are active in. If not, I coach them with my famous "walkabout" 1/2 session you can find about more at

  • Judy Cullins

    Karen, Thanks for your kind words. I'm a problem solver and I never rest until I get my clients to wake up to making changes that will almost guarantee your book's financial success!

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