Banned From Worldwide Trading
One of the themes of this blog is charting the ups and downs of my online business – and just before I went on holiday I had a definite slap in the face when my supplier banned me from trading worldwide:-(
The post, and the web-pages I had to change as a result of the ban were put together in haste because I was off on holiday in days and didn't want to leave my temporary assistant with complications.
The one job that remained, which I couldn't get done in time, was updating my Kindle book. Originally it gave details of how anyone in the world could make payment by PayPal and post me a hair sample. I would arrange for the test to be done and then I would return the client's results by email.
Of course all that has changed now.
Outsourcing The Kindle Update
It was ages since I originally did this and I had completely forgotten the steps in producing a Kindle book. I'm really busy with my offline business, so the last thing I needed was a diversion to try and remember how to produce a Kindle book and cover.
It's probably a piece of cake to many of my readers, but I can sense when I'm heading for what I call my “overwhelm mode” and it's not good for me. So I decided to take my own advice and pay for a bit of out-sourcing.
While revisiting the process there was one thing I'd been promising myself…
They haven't exactly flown off the shelf – and someone told me it was because my cover was “rubbish”. Looking at the old cover, I could see what he meant! So I decided to reinvest some of my profits in an improved cover.
- I had the Kindle cover shown on the left designed for me using a lady from Fiverr.com
- A friend recommended one of his personal contacts to do the Kindle formatting for me. He did a good job, quickly, and for a very reasonable price.
- His work included validating it for errors as per EPUB guidelines and checking its appearance on Adobe Digital. He did the work quickly and fixed one minor glitch very promptly, so I will certainly use him again.
- I then updated the book by going to: http://kdp.amazon.com/
- I selected the book I wanted to update, clicked on “Actions,” and then “Edit Book Details” and there were detailed instructions for uploading my updated book.
- Finally I clicked on Save and Publish.
The book was now marked as being in a “Review” process – which I expected might take a long time. However, very quickly I got an email back asking me to confirm that I had world-wide rights to the material. They seemed to have found my ebook online and were presumably checking I hadn't pinched it from that.
After I confirmed my right as author, final approval was fairly fast.
Overall I think it probably took about 12 hours before my uploaded changes were visible – which I was warned about.
So that task has been put firmly to bed, and it's been a useful learning curve for when I add more products to Kindle.
The Future of This Service?
To be honest, having lost my world-wide customer base I think I'm going to let it slide, other than any UK sales, ebook sales or Kindle sales that happen to come my way.
It was a useful learning curve and I found out about:
- Producing an information product – eBook and Kindle
- Taking payments on-line
- Setting up a website
- Then a blog
- And an auto-responder
These were important stages in my learning curve – and I made a decent profit from it. But now it's time to move on.
- It has been an example of a lesson I NOW understand, but didn't when I first started out. Have your OWN product, don't be at the mercy of any supplier 🙁
- In the original post I described the problems caused by the manual steps the process needs. When I was tied to my home by other commitments that wasn't a real problem. In the last year life has changed for me and I am more free to please myself.
- Russ and his family probably have a better Internet and technology setup in his place in Spain than I do here, and I want to be free to spend more time with them – not waiting for clumps of hair to drop through the letter box!
- I'm trying to spread myself in too many different directions and I want to focus more.
So, with thanks for the memories and the lessons, this service won't have much more of my attention.
Nevertheless, I hope that the steps I took in updating my Kindle book will be useful to others.
Update April 2017
I uploaded a second Kindle book in 2016, and I still make small sales most months. So that's been a worthwhile exercise.