What Are Low Content Books?
Low content book ideas? Forget that, what are low content books!?! For those in the back or who have been under a rock the last 4 or 5 years, low content books include:
- Coloring books
- Activity books
- Puzzle books
and so much more.
Creating these books has long been touted as a dead simple way to make easy money. If you’re new to this idea, you’re probably thinking it sounds pretty fun and interesting. You’d be right, but there are some caveats.
The Problems with Low Content Publishing
There have been many self-publishers who aspired to have their low content books ideas realized and appreciated only to have their hopes dashed when they find out their low content books are dead in the water.
Those publishers didn’t go the extra mile. Instead they are relying on intuition and their ideas alone or outright stealing people’s intellectual property. Sidenote: If you’re doing this, stop.
Low content is a broad niche with a lot of competition. One cool thing is that Amazon finally recognized it in the last year. Amazon defines low content books as follows:
“A low-content book has minimal or no content on the interior pages. These pages are generally repetitive and designed to be filled in by the user. Common examples include notebooks, planners, journals, and other similar works. This does not typically include activity/puzzle books or coloring books, [as these] generally do not feature repetitive content on each page.” ~ Kindle Direct Publishing
If you’ve been self-publishing for any time at all, then you know there are a lot of bad actors who also publish books. It must be like a constant game of Whack-A-Mole for Amazon to keep these scammers at bay. In some cases they don’t. It’s no different with any book genre, but because low content books can take less time to create, you’ll see it more here.
Validating Your Low Content Book Ideas
If you want to make a true impact in your self-publishing business with low content books, you must take a few preemptive steps to validate your low content book ideas.
You want to make informed decisions about which books you put time and money into creating. This will increase the odds your book will succeed over blind intuition or worse, chasing someone else’s creative intellectual property like a scumbag.
There are two key factors in validating your low content book ideas:
- Relevant keywords
A niche denotes products and interests that appeal to a small specialized group.
Sure, you could publish lined notebooks, but let’s face it, unless it has something unique or extraordinary, why would a browsing customer buy it?
They could just go to their local Walmart or Dollar Tree, save a few bucks in the process, and pick up something that will serve the purpose.
To stand out, it’s what you put on the cover and in the pages that will make the difference.
We can’t aptly describe a niche though, without mentioning a few relevant terms or phrases to help evoke that instant understanding of what we’re talking about.
That’s where keywords come in and serve the greatest importance in the lifetime success of your publication.
If you choose the wrong keyword, you end up as we mentioned earlier, dead in the water, or in a fist-fight with the perennial sellers. Your book will languish in obscurity thereafter.
When you find the right keywords with a good balance of competition versus customer demand, that’s where the magic happens.
So, let’s take a look at a practical application of keyword and niche research.
I’m going to show you the hard way, and then the easy way.
Keyword and Niche Research – The Hard Way
You’ll want to go this route if you have more time than money. However, I recommend that everyone learn the hard way just so you better understand how Amazon functions as a delivery vehicle for your business when you know how to use it right.
The truth is, sweat equity keeps the dollars in your bottom line. You’ll just have to put in more time.
I’ve already outlined an extensive tutorial on how to perform keyword and niche research the hard way. There’s no need to repeat myself. Click over and see what that’s all about step-by-step.
In addition to the basics of your research, there’s some deeper exploration you can do to gain more insights. For example, reviews. How many do they have? What are they saying? Check the pictures and videos in the reviews.
Gain an understanding of what is working and what is not. If you can find that gap and fill it, that’s where you can find your paycheck. It’s as tedious as it sounds.
You can ignore all of this and publish books until you hit a good idea and then just double down on it or you can vet the information a little more thoroughly. I definitely recommend the latter.
Some of that intel is hard to access because, well…it’s the hard way, haha. You can still spend hours researching the perfect niche and keyword only to find out your idea just doesn’t stick.
Then you’re out of time, money, and resources to publish that stinker of a book that isn’t going to make any money.
Keyword and Niche Research – The Easy Way
This is the method for you if you have more money than you do time or just have money in general to throw at your self-publishing efforts.
We’re going to be using Book Bolt, so you’ll need an account with them. Use the coupon code DALE20 to get 20% off your plan. Their plans are super affordable either way!
Book Bolt actually does this research for you much faster and gives you one of the most important metrics in your future decision-making processes.
What is it?
Book Bolt will tell you how many people are actually searching for terms. Just because products are showing up inside of search doesn’t necessarily mean that customers are actually searching for those terms.
You want to know if people are searching for the type of book you want to create, the keywords they are typing most often to find them, and how many actual competitors you have beyond the first page.
There are two specific features that I like to use in Book Bolt.
Book Bolt tosses out the irrelevant stuff like fiction or non-fiction books. Having those included in our metrics doesn’t do us any good. We need to see what’s working for low content book ideas.
On the Research tab, select the type of low content book you want to research. Then type in your keyword.
Book Bolt will return all of the relevant data you need including:
- Total results
- The average ABSR
- The lowest, highest, and average price
The books you see in the results are the best sellers for the keyword and niche you’re researching. This is your competition.
You’ll want to look at the information about each like we did when using “the hard way.” Check the reviews, look for keywords in the metadata, etc. Try to backwards engineer what they’re doing that is working well for them.
As you scroll down, on the right side you’ll see what keywords are currently in use and the number of times they appear in the search results.
Keep scrolling to see related keywords and the search volume for each of those.
If you want to go even more granular and find out how many people are actually searching for a term on Amazon to prove your concept, then we need to use the Keywords feature in Book Bolt.
In the left navigation, click Keywords. Select Search from the fly-out menu.
This is where you want to use the keywords you’re vetting for your 12 to 24 list of terms to use with your publication.
Type the keyword or phrase into the box and click Search.
Book Bolt brings back all of the relevant and related terms. Pay close attention to the first column showing Amazon search volume. The higher this number, the more customers are searching for that term. You can also see the search volume for Google as well.
The cost-per-click shows buyer intent. If the number is high, that means there definitely an audience ready and willing to purchase your products.
These are just two features of the many Book Bolt has to offer. There’s definitely more to come.
Vetting Your Low Content Book Ideas
Whether you do it the hard way or the easy way, you will build out a low content concept based on niches and relevant keywords that are currently working.
Use the 12 to 24 keywords from your list in:
- Your title
- Your subtitle
- The 7 keyword slots on the backend of KDP
- In your book description
Make sure the keywords you use fit naturally. Don’t stuff in more than one or two of the most relevant ones.
If you write exclusively in a certain niche, you can include related keywords in your bio. Always be looking for opportunities to use your keywords.
Now you have to decide. Would you rather spend countless hours relying on your gut instincts and hope for the best or invest a little with Book Bolt and save yourself the time and energy you could otherwise devote to creating more quality low content books that customers will be clamoring to buy?
Use the coupon code DALE20 to get 20% off your account indefinitely. (Make sure to use all caps. It won’t work otherwise.)
This is only the second part in a four-part series on publishing low content books on Amazon, so stay tuned!