Tips for Designing a Successful Book Cover

With countless books vying for readers’ attention, a catchy cover can spell all the difference. So now the question is, what makes a successful book cover?

If you’ve decided to self-publish your book, here are pointers to help you in the cover design process:

Focus

Have a main focus for the cover – nothing could be more important. Your book conveys something, and its cover has to reflect that one exact idea distinctly. Don’t overcrowd your cover with too many items.

Think of your book cover as a billboard, trying to catch prospects’ attention as they speed by. Effective billboards have 6 words max. You have to grasp the message in 3-5 seconds at 60 miles per hour. That applies to your book cover. At a glance, your prospect should know your book’s genre, focus, and tone.

Function

Any element that you include in your design should contribute to your overall message. Each element should count.

Background

White backgrounds will disappear on retailers’ white screens, so don’t use one. Something with texture or perhaps an illustration, should be safe. You don’t want to lose a sale just because of a trivial and totally preventable issue like this.

Title

Try to reduce the size of your cover design to that of an Amazon thumbnail and make sure you can still read it. It has to be readable.

Talking about readability, choose a font that’s easy to read even when reduced radically. Also, stay away from those thin and lacy script typefaces – they usually become invisible when small.

Images

Use an image that gives a feel of your book and instead of being too literal. It can express the overall mood, for instance, or perhaps the era of the events.

Colors

This may be tricky as your choice of colors will clearly depend on the general theme or tone of your book. As a rule of thumb, you shouldn’t use too many so you don’t distract readers from your cover’s main message. You can also take a look at some color palettes online and decide on a combination that you think will fit your book.

Inspiration

The idea is not to copy what they’ve done, but just to observe their techniques and mimic them with your own cover. You won’t believe how this can help you create your own ideas and concepts.

Book Cover Design Software

If you’re going to create your own cover, you can using book cover design software and be more efficient with it. You don’t need to worry about the technicalities as the software will handle that part. And because of that, you can focus on your creativity and end up with a more effective and memorable book cover.

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