Every time I get an ebook return, I wonder what I could have done better to prevent it.
I think, “I was clear about the info included, why are they requesting a refund?” This feeling quickly subsides though because it doesn’t happen that often.
Ebook Returns: Who Can Benefit from This Information
Before we go any further I want to say, this ebook is not for every ebook writer, publisher and/or seller. While much of the information within will apply to many ebook writers, publishers and sellers, the material here is specifically for those who deal in the how-to, non-fiction genre.
With that being said, let’s start the discussion.
My Firm’s Ebook Return Rate
I’m lucky, less than 1% of those who purchase ebooks from InkwellEditorial.com (my company) request a refund. I’ve been selling ebooks online since 2004 and went back through almost three years of records (and yes, my eyes are bleary from looking at all those numbers).
I ran my return numbers from PayPal from January 1, 2009 through August 29, 2011 – just from my website, InkwellEditorial.com (not Amazon or Clickbank or Lulu – other places I sell ebooks).
I chose this time period because (i) it was the most recent as of this writing; and (ii) before then I wasn’t logging almost daily sales like I do now.
Following is what I found . . .
NUMBER OF TRANSACTIONS: 2569
ITEMS SOLD: 2990
I processed exactly 20 refunds out of over 2,500 transactions.
Ebook Returns: What I Gleaned from My Research on Ebook Returns
Roughly that anything less than this percent seems to be about the norm.
But again – this can’t be stressed enough – your ebook return rate depends a lot on some key factors.
With this researched info in mind, following are 16 things you can do to minimize ebook returns.
Following is the complete Table of Contents for this Ebook
TABLE OF CONTENTS
PREFACE, Page 5
Ebook Returns: Who Can Benefit from This Information, Page 5
My Firm’s Ebook Return Rate, Page 5
Ebook Returns: Some Industry Stats, Page
A Successful “Pro Blogger” Discusses His Ebook Return Rate, Page 6
WarriorForum Ebook Return Discussion, Page 6
The Clickbank Refund Rate, Page 6
$1,200 in 11 Days in Clickbank Sales, Page 7
Some Reasons for Higher-Than-Average Clickbank Ebook Return Rates, Page 8
Ebook Returns: What I Gleaned from My Research, Page 8
I. PROVIDE A COMPLETE TABLE OF CONTENTS, Page 9
Writing the Best Ebook You Can: Why a Table of Contents Is Critical, Page 9
II. CONTENT DELIVERY, Page 10
How to Write Content that Decreases Ebook Returns, Page 10
III. DON’T WRITE CRAP!, Page 11
IV. AUTO DELIVERY, Page 12
V. CUSTOMER SERVICE – HOW QUICKLY TO RESPOND TO CUSTOMERS, Page 13
My Experience with Ebook Returns: How Quickly to Respond to Buyers to Lessen the Chance That They’ll Request a Refund, Page 13
Message to Ebook Buyers that Helps Minimize Ebook Returns, Page 14
How to Make Contact Easy to Minimize Ebook Returns, Page 14
Why Many Who Request Ebook Refunds Really Don’t Want Their Money Back, Page 15
VI. ASK FOR FEEDBACK, Page 16
The 80/20 Rule of Marketing, Page 16
VII. CONDUCT KEYWORD RESEARCH TO PREVENT EBOOK RETURNS, Page 18
The Secret to Making Sure Your Ebook Will Sell Before You Write It, Page 19
VIII. WRITE AN AUTHOR BIO, Page 20
3 Things I Do in My Author Bio That Helps to Decrease Ebook Returns, Page 21
IX. DEVELOP A REFUND POLICY, Page 23
X. WRITE FROM EXPERIENCE, Page 24
3 Reasons Writing from First-Hand Experience Decreases Ebook Returns, Page 24
Ebook Writing Tip for New, Nonfiction Ebook Writers, Page 26
XI. SPELL OUT WHO EBOOK IS FOR, Page 27
XII. PRICE IT RIGHT, Page 28
3 Things to Consider When Pricing Your Ebook to Mitigate Returns, Page 28
XIII. START A BLOG/WEBSITE, Page 30
Decrease Ebook Returns: 4 Reasons Starting a Blog / Website Will Help Minimize Returns, Page 30
XIV. REMIND CUSTOMERS WHO THEY’RE ORDERING FROM, Page 33
XV. SIGN UP WITH PAYPAL, Page 34
Ebook Returns and PayPal: Insight for Ebook Writers, Publishers and Sellers, Page 34
When You Can and Can’t Get a Refund on Ebooks via PayPal, Page 34
4 Reasons NOT to Go the “We Accept PayPal Payments Only” Route, Page 35
I Don’t Understand the Whole PayPal Thing – How Can I Purchase with a Credit Card Using PayPal?, Page 35
Why Using PayPal Is a Safe Way to Shop Online, Page 35
A Couple of Commonly Asked Questions about PayPal, Page 35
Why Using PayPal Can Decrease Ebook Returns, Page 36
XVI: EBOOK SOFTWARE, Page 37
ABOUT THE AUTHOR, Page 38