how to Make an ebook.

D o you want to learn how to make an ebook?

Welcome! I’ll guide you through every step of the process of how to make an ebook:

From brainstorming ideas to crafting the ebook format, designing the layout and cover, and finally uploading it to your blog or website.

This article is your go-to resource for creating an ebook to giveaway on your blog and help you attract more email subscribers. Plus, it contains essential insights if you aim to design an ebook to sell on an online marketplace.

Let’s begin by outlining the quick steps involved in the ebook design and formatting process, then dive deeper into each aspect.

Quick Steps for How To Make an Ebook

Why Make an Ebook?

Some of the reasons all online marketers and bloggers should make an ebook are to:

  • Get pre-loyal subscribers
    If you want to make money, you need loyal subscribers. And one of the best ways to get email subscribers and introduce them to your material is to give them a free ebook as a lead magnet.
  • Increase your exposure
    These PDF files are super easy to share, and you’ll often find that people send them on to their friends who then get introduced to you and your blog. Also, they tend to sit on people’s desktop for longer than a blog post or a web article, so you have multiple chances to get them to read it.
  • Add a new revenue stream
    Many people think that the top bloggers only make money on their blogs. But they don’t. A lot of their income often comes from a combination of having a successful mailing list strategy tied to a successful ebook.

All these things are possible as long as you know what you’re doing. Remember, there are a lot of ebooks out there, so you’ll need to create something special in order to make the ebook stand out.

But the good news is that people love reading ebooks on their phones or Kindle as much as their computers, so the demand to read an ebook as a PDF file remains.

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Step 1: Research Your Target Market

The first step when making an ebook is to take a careful look at who you are pitching it to.

Knowing this information is like knowing which person in a crowd is Waldo. You have to know what he looks like, what he’s wearing, and why he might be looking for you. 

Unless you know your target market well, you’re essentially shooting blind.

NOTE: This is the first step if you have an existing blog. If you want to make an ebook first and then build up promotional material around it, then you would do step two first.

Look for Popular Content and Keywords in Google Analytics

First, you want to log in to your Google Analytics account and check which of your pages attracts the most visitors. Then, once you’ve connected your Google Search Console and Analytics accounts, you can check the most popular keywords and search phrases that people are using to find your blog. 

We recommend using MonsterInsights because it makes it easier to track and see your Google Analytics stats, right inside your WordPress dashboard:

MonsterInsights dashboard
MonsterInsights Dashboard

You can check the Top Landing Pages report to see which content gets the most traffic and the Search Console report to find out which keywords are getting the most traffic:

MonsterInsights Search Console Report
MonsterInsights Search Console

For step by step instructions, see our guide on how to install Google Analytics on your WordPress blog with MonsterInsights.

Discover More About Your Audience in Google Analytics

Google Analytics also provides background information on your audience. You’ll need to enable the Demographics and Interests Reports in Google Analytics first. Once that’s done, you can collect data on the age range, gender, location, and interests of your audience.

Again, if you’ve installed MonsterInsights, you can see these details in your WordPress dashboard via the Publishers Report:

MonsterInsights Publishers Report Age and Gender
MonsterInsight Publishers Report Age and Gender
MonsterInsights Publishers Report Interest Breakdown
MonsterInsights Publishers Report Interests

Check What’s Popular With Your Competitors

Now you know what content and keywords perform best on your site, you need to check what’s popular with your competitors.

Unfortunately, Google Analytics only shows data on your site, so we recommend using Semrush to check your competition.

For example, if you were in the food niche and Pinch Of Yum was one of your competitors, you could enter their domain in the Organic Research report and see which pages bring in the most traffic and rank for the most keywords:

Use Semrush to Find Related Keywords

You can also use Semrush to find out if any other related keywords could perform better.

For example, if you research this article, you’ll find the related keywords, “make an ebook,” “create an ebook,” and “write an ebook” all have different search volumes:

You can do the same for your competitor’s keywords, too. For example, the search term “homemade chocolate chip cookies” is more popular than “chocolate chip cookies”:

Over time, using these related keywords can help attract more visitors to your ebook. And, now you more about your audience, you can write an ebook that will help them.

For more details, see our guide on how to do keyword research for beginners.

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Step 2: Choose the Right Ebook Title and Topic

Once you’ve narrowed down your target market, you want to develop an ebook topic and a title that will blow people away and solve their problems.

To do this, it needs to have an original edge on a very relevant topic.

It’s About You as Much as Them

One important thing to realize is that making a good ebook is as much about you as it is about your target audience.


Because you’re the one who is writing, promoting, selling, and believing in it. 

Unless you have a passionate and knowledgeable interest in the topic, you will likely fail before you start.

For example, you wouldn’t make an ebook about puppy training unless you knew enough to help people and loved the topic enough to push it for the next five years.

Personalize Your Ebook

The best ebooks are the ones that share a personal experience about a common topic. Why? Because it adds authority and credibility. 

Authority is very important when it comes to ebooks and articles because you need to show potential readers and customers that you’re experienced enough to know what you’re talking about.

Let’s take the example of making money online, and you write an ebook called “How to Make a Million Dollars Per Year.”

Now, if you make a million dollars per year and think you can teach others how to do the same, then that’s a great book to write. 

If, however, you have never made that money yourself, then you really have no authority on the topic. And people will smell it a mile off.

So, before you choose the topic of your ebook, make sure you have a personalized angle attached to it. This is very important.

Make the Title Specific

Specific titles work best. It doesn’t matter whether it’s an ebook or a blog post. For example, we wrote a post called “How to Sell a Blog for $20,000 in 8 Months” that hit the front of Delicious and even went on to get picked up by some newspapers. If we’d called it “How to Sell a Blog,” then it wouldn’t have done nearly as well. Check out these steps to make your title specific and compelling.

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Step 3: Ebook Creation: Write, Edit, and Format 

Now, you have to write your ebook and format it so that it’s easy to read.

This is where the magic happens, and unless you know what you’re doing, some obstacles will appear.

Use Google Docs to Write Your eBook

There isn’t one way to create an ebook. However, we’ve found Google Docs to be the best program to write ebooks. Why? Because it’s totally free and has all the features you need. 

For example, it instantly converts the standard Google Doc file to a PDF and has a reliable range of fonts to choose from. Plus, Google Docs automatically backs up your work to the Cloud, so you don’t have to worry about losing it.

You can export documents as PDFs if you’re already using another word processor like Microsoft Word. But please, don’t go out and buy any premium program solely to write an ebook.

Create an Outline: Start With an End and Work Backwards

People will download your ebook because they want to figure out how to do something. For this reason, you should start with the outcome that they are looking for and work your way backward when planning your ebook. 

Sometimes it’s a good idea to create the contents page or a draft ebook outline first because it gives you a sound structure to work from. Other times, you can just write like crazy, get all your ideas down, and worry about the layout later. 

Either way, it doesn’t matter as long as you are systematically getting people closer to achieving their goals.

Pro Tip: Add an ‘About the Author’ page at the end. When people share your ebook, you can use this page to introduce yourself and point new readers to your website and mailing list.

Make Your Ebook Scannable

Have a look at all of our posts here on Blog Tyrant. You’ll notice they have two types of headers (main and sub), plus lots of lists and paragraphs. The reason for this is because people hate digesting large chunks of content. While long-form content is getting more popular, you need to format it in a scannable way.

The same applies to your ebook. You need to format the content so it’s easy to digest. Use subheadings, short paragraphs, lists, and visuals would make it easier to read your ebook. And don’t be afraid of white space on the page. 

An ebook that’s scannable is one that more people will want to read. 

Get It Proofread, but Not by a Friend

The next step is to get your ebook proofread by someone who isn’t scared to give you harsh feedback. Ideally, this should be a professional editor or a knowledgeable person in your industry, someone who can give you the hard truths about your writing style and execution of ideas.

Before you share the ebook, use an online spell checker or editor like Grammarly to iron out all the obvious spelling and grammar mistakes.

Then, your professional editor can focus on whether the ebook solves the problems you say it does and check for a coherent flow.

A professional ebook requires sound editing and proofreading. 

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Step 4: Add Images, Graphics, and Cover Art

We already mentioned formatting your text, but adding images and graphics can help illustrate important points and convey your message.

And you’ll want to ensure you have an attractive ebook cover design to increase the chances that your audience will want your ebook. Adding graphics and images makes for a more eye-catching ebook.

Use a Safe, Well-Proven Font and Simple Colors

Have you ever downloaded an ebook and come across a crazy font that’s difficult to read? It’s not a pleasant experience, is it?

You really only need to use a basic font like Arial, Verdana or Georgia at size 14 or 16 with a simple color scheme like black with one other to make it easy to read. 

Don’t go overboard when it comes to this part. Less is always more in the design field! 

Get Some Awesome Images

There are so many different places to get images for your blog or ebook, but two of the best solutions we like are to use Shutterstock and your own photos.

Remember, when using photos, you need to make sure you purchase the correct license and get permission. Plus, you want to avoid stock photos that have been used thousands of times before. And Shutterstock covers those bases.

If you’re really specific about what you want photos of or if you need your own product in there somewhere, then you’re going to have to hire a professional photographer. And this can be expensive. You’re usually looking at between $500 and $3000 for a full day’s shoot. 

If you’re taking your own photos, then make sure you use a good camera or smartphone, so they don’t look amateurish.

Use Stats and Quotes

Another way to help you create a professional ebook is to use graphics that contain stats or quotes. As long as the quote or stat adds value to your content, it’s another way to emphasize a point and break up the text.

Make an Ebook Cover to Use on Your Site

An essential part of the process is having an enticing ebook cover to promote your PDF document. Here’s an example of our ebook cover:

start a blog ebook cover

Book covers are great because they increase the product’s perceived value by making it seem solid. Of course, it’s just a PDF file and not a real book, but by giving it a graphical representation, people will feel like it is worth more. 

We highly recommend hiring a graphic designer from 99Designs or DesignCrowd to make you something professional rather than trying to create one on your own. Remember, this is going to represent your whole brand.

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Step 5: Convert Your eBook Into a PDF File and Give It Away

The next stage is where your ebook baby is born.

Now, we’re not going to talk about how to sell an ebook because we really believe in giving them away for free.

But if you want to learn about landing pages and how to publish your ebook to sell, then take a look at this guide to great landing pages.

Convert Your eBook Format to PDF

PDF is the most popular ebook format. Why? Because it’s universally recognized by Macs and PCs alike and works on all ebook readers. Most importantly, it also provides consistent output. This can lead to more eyes on your ebook.

When you save a typical Word document and send it to your friends, chances are everyone will see something different. But that’s not the case with a PDF. They all look the same. And this means your design and formatting work won’t go to waste.

If you’re using Google Docs, you just need to go File > Download > PDF Document (.pdf):

This makes your ebook easy to read and share.

Pro Tip: Other file formats are available, but the PDF works on all devices and is best-suited to free downloads. If you were selling your ebook as a premium product, then you might also want to offer EPUB and MOBI ebook formats.

Give It Away in Exchange for Email Subscriptions

Once you’ve converted your ebook into a PDF, you need to set up a system where you can automatically send your ebook through email to those who’ve added their email address to your opt-in form.

We recommend using OptinMonster to make this process as straightforward as possible. Here’s how you do it:

  1. Build a high-converting optin form.
  2. Leverage OptinMonster success themes to confirm their subscription and deliver your ebook.
  3. Send your ebook via email to ensure lead magnet delivery.

Let’s take a look.

1. Build a High-Converting Optin Form

The first step is to capture subscribers’ email addresses in an opt-in form. For example:

OptinMonster has loads of high-converting campaign templates you can choose from. But if you’re looking for inspiration, then follow this guide for creating the ultimate opt-in form and check out these email optin popup examples.

Once you’ve collected the email address, you must deliver the ebook. You can do this with OptinMonster in a few ways, but we recommend using an instant Success Message plus a backup Email message.

2. Use a Success Message to Confirm Their Subscription and Deliver Your Ebook

The easiest way to deliver your ebook is through a Success Message.

And, what’s more, it’s also the quickest way for your subscribers to receive the ebook.

Here’s how to do it:

In your OptinMonster campaign, from the Design tab, select Success at the top of the screen to display the Success Message that corresponds to the campaign theme:

The default option (shown above) is to have the lead magnet link sent via email, but you can add a Download Now button with some easy customizations.

Using the Blocks editor, let’s add a Button Element:

Click on your new Button to customize the text and any other visual elements:

Now, use the Actions tools to add your download URL and, if you wish, enable conversion tracking:

3. Send an Email to Ensure Ebook Delivery

We always recommend sending an email to your subscribers in addition to the Success Message, just to make sure that they got your ebook. Plus, it’s also an excellent opportunity to welcome them aboard!

There are two sides to setting this up:

First, in your email service provider software, add the link to the downloadable ebook in the first email you send to new subscribers. Make a note of the email campaign or sequence name.

(Email service providers are all slightly different, but OptinMonster has a complete library of tutorials covering each type of integration.)

Second, in OptinMonster, go to the Integrations tab and select your email provider and the name of the email campaign or sequence:

Now when people sign up for your ebook, they’ll get it delivered immediately and get a confirmation email containing the download link.

Bonus: The analytics and email marketing data you collect from your optin form will also help you to understand your target market even more.

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[Bonus] Step 6: Promote Your Ebook

The final stage is where you promote your ebook. Where you choose to promote your ebook is crucial to its success. We highly recommend you follow this blogging strategy to help you understand the relationship between your website, mailing list, and a successful ebook.

Simply put, the idea is to create quality content on your site and other sites that drives relevant traffic back to your ebook’s landing page. It’s called a sales funnel and works exceptionally well.

Advertise on Your Site

Make sure any visitor to your site knows about your free ebook. You can create banners on your homepage, in your sidebar, footer, and blog posts. 

For example, with OptinMonster you can choose from different campaign types to display attention-grabbing offers to your visitors, including:

  • Inline Form – displays in blog posts and page content.
  • Lightbox Popup – appears on the page after a specified time or action.
  • Fullscreen Welcome Mat – covers the entire screen.
  • Floating Bar – stays visible at the top or bottom of pages.
  • Sidebar Forms – display in sidebars across your site.
  • Slide-in Scroll Box – appears in the bottom corner after a specified time.
OptinMonster Campaign Types
OptinMonster Campaign Types

Make sure your ebook offer is highly visible!

Get Your SEO Right

Make sure your promotional pages are optimized with headlines and descriptions, as well as page speed and design, to boost your chances of ranking your blog in search results.

Email Existing Subscribers

Although you want to attract new subscribers and build your mailing list, don’t forget to let your existing subscribers know about your new ebook. Send them a newsletter with a link to the download page.

Publish Social Media Posts

Share clips from your ebook on social media with a link for new subscribers to sign up and download the ebook. Use striking visuals and captivating captions to generate the most impact across the different social media channels.

Leverage Social Proof

There’s nothing like a recommendation or endorsement from a fellow blogger or inspired reader to encourage other people to download your ebook. 

Approach your contacts and ask them to share their opinion and then place it on your landing page and marketing materials.

You can also use a tool like TrustPulse to easily boost your social proof. It allows you to display real-time social proof notifications on your website whenever someone takes an action like signing up for your newsletter or buying your ebook.

TrustPulse social proof notification

These real notifications encourage other visitors on your site to take action, too.

For more ideas, check out these powerful social proof examples.

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Key Takeaways on How To Make an eBook

  • Create ebooks to boost email subscribers and open new revenue channels.
  • Use tools like Google Analytics and competitor insights to identify your audience.
  • Select a catchy title and topic that resonates with your target readers.
  • Use Google Docs for an easy write, edit, and format the reader’s experience.
  • Enhance your ebook with compelling images and a professional cover.
  • Convert to PDF for accessibility across all devices.
  • Offer your ebook for free to grow your email list.
  • Promote your ebook via your site, SEO, and social channels for maximum reach.
  • Ensure your ebook is compatible across devices, including mobile.
  • Embed links within your ebook to enrich content with external resources.
  • And remember that PDFs have a fixed layout which can affect mobile responsiveness.

Ready To Design Your eBook?

Okay, now you know how to create an ebook that rocks! 

Remember to follow each step, so your ebook content appeals to the right audience and answers their burning question.

If you’ve made an ebook before and have some tips to share, please let us know in the comments below. We really want to make this post a helpful resource for people starting to create content for their first ebook that stands out from the competition. 

Also, check out our guide on email marketing and how to install WordPress.

Similarly, if you have any questions, then drop a comment below, and we’ll do our best to answer them.


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  1. ALOYSIUS EMMANUEL on May 12, 2020

    I love this guide, I have been looking for how to create ebook, it’s seems I’m in the right place.


  2. This is all well and good but how do you place the cover and the body of the book together so that it is one document. For some reason, I can’t figure this out and can’t find any help or tutorials on it. I have the body of the book and I have a cover in but don’t know how to put the two together. I’ve tried and I ended up with some weird code at the top and all my images disappeared. The boxes where the pictures were are there, but no picture. Can you help? Thank you.

    1. Hey Judy, if you save the cover as a PDF, you can use a site like to combine the 2 PDF files into one. Hope that helps.

  3. Jermaine Malone on May 31, 2020

    Love your blog, do you have a YouTube Channel as well?

  4. Ananya Singh on June 25, 2020

    Where to make our e-book cover?
    How to bring it on Google Docs?

    1. Hey Ananya, you could use something like Canva to create a cover, and download it as a PDF. Then once you have both PDF files (the cover, and the book) you could use a tool like CombinePDF to combine them into 1 file. Hope that helps.

  5. Once the ebook is made will it work across all devices. Such as; desktop/laptop, tablet and cell phones?

    1. Yes, on any device that will open a regular PDF file!

      1. Keri, thank you!
        I quickly read (plan to re-read) this post and you may have answered my next question. Can you insert links? To existing blog posts, videos, ….etc?

        1. Yes, if you’re using Google Docs to create your ebook, you could insert links like normal. Then when you download the PDF, they’ll be included.

  6. Thank you, Blog Tyrant, for sharing such a helpful, practical guide.

    1. Happy you found it helpful Glynis!

  7. Brian Robherts on March 2, 2022

    Great article. Will work well on a web site viewed by laptop/desk top with larger screen. For a smart phone – I believe PDF is not responsive – layout is fixed. So I don’t think pdf is the way to go for all devices.

  8. Olona A. Tshangela on April 9, 2022

    This is an amazing guide

  9. Brian Matsaira on May 3, 2022

    All I can say is thank you ,you have made the whole process seem so easy your teaching was so understandable now I am no longer afriad of writing an ebook

    1. Allison on May 10, 2022

      Happy you found the tutorial helpful, Brian! 🙂

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