Can You Really Make Money Self-Publishing on KDP?

There is a growing number of YouTube channels and Facebook groups promoting the use of Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) as a quick and easy way to earn money working from home. But is the hype true?

From my experience, quick and easy it’s not but it can prove to be a good side hustle. There are a lot of advantages to self-publishing on KDP. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages and learn why you may want to add KDP as an extra income stream.

The Advantages of KDP Self-Publishing

1. Your cost to get started is low

It’s free to join the KDP program. And it’s likely you already own the tools you’ll need to get started.  If you have Microsoft Office or a free alternative like Google Docs or Libre Office, you have the resources you need to create your book’s interior pages.  For low content books, like Journals and Planners, many people use PowerPoint to create the interior. A free account at Canva can be used to create both your book’s interior and cover.

Compared to other business ventures the costs to get started earning royalties by self-publishing on KDP are extremely low.

2. You can work from anywhere

You can upload your manuscript and view your sales data from any place that has an internet connection. This is truly a business you can manage remotely from your home or a scenic vacation spot.

3. KDP provides a source of passive income

Any type of business requires time and effort up-front to get started. But after completing your book and publishing it to the Amazon marketplace, you can continue to earn royalties for months or years afterward.

4. Assistance in getting started is readily available

A large number of low-cost Udemy courses, YouTube channels, and Facebook groups exist that provide KDP resources and training for learning how to create a book and publish it on KDP. Everything you need to know to get started in this business opportunity can be found online.

What If I’m Not a Writer?

The good news about this type of business is you don’t have to be a writer to get started earning some extra income.  Fiction and non-fiction books can be profitable but if you don’t want to write a long manuscript, you can earn by selling low or no-content books.  These types of books require very little content from the author as the buyer is purchasing a book they will fill in or complete themselves.

Low-content books include journals, planners, activity books, puzzle books, and logbooks.  Examples of no-content books include composition notebooks, sketchbooks, and graph paper.

Coloring books for children or adults sell well but require that you either have artistic skills or are willing to outsource the graphic work.

Unlike fiction or non-fiction books, low-content books are never published as a Kindle eBook. They should always be published a paperback.

How Much Can I Earn?

The amount that is possible to earn depends greatly on the quality of your books and the amount of value they offer to customers.  Two large factors in making book sales are niche research and your books covers.

Niche research involves finding book topics that users are searching for in sufficient numbers and that still have room for additional competition. When a customer is searching, your book’s cover needs to stand out in the search results.  If you’re not comfortable with designing your book’s cover, there are many options for outsourcing the work.

Many authors don’t start seeing sales for several months after publishing.  And a small percentage of books will make up the bulk of your sales.  So consistently creating new books and patience are necessary.  Newer books can drive sales to your back catalog.

The amount you can earn depends on how much effort you’re willing to put into your business.  You can earn anywhere from a few hundred per year to thousands per month.  As you continue to produce books and you gain experience, you’ll find the process gets easier and your earnings increase.

For more information on starting an Amazon KDP self-publishing business, visit

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