Free Service Makes Lovely Landing Pages for your Books

Booklaunch LogoAuthors who need polished landing pages for their books can get them free with the web service A landing page is a webpage designed to provide a splashy, glamorous look at your book that funnels readers to purchase the book.

Landing pages are particularly great when you publish to several different websites through a distributor. If you’re using the same file for Kobo, Apple, and Barnes & Noble, you can’t put vendor-specific links to your other books in that manuscript. However, if you put links to a landing page, purchasers can purchase your book from whatever vendor you want.

Booklaunch pages don’t require authors to know any HTML. The pages include purchase links, review quotes, book images, and you can even embed video.

To get started, you need to log into Booklaunch. You can either create an account, or login with Twitter or Facebook. Then, you can start setting up your page. Booklaunch1_login

Your first time on the site, it might take you to the new page setup. If not, click on either “Build with ISBN” or “New Page” button. If you click on “New Page,” you’ll need to have book cover images at the ready. If you choose “Build with ISBN,” which I recommend, Booklaunch will import your book data based on the ISBN or Amazon ASIN. booklaunch2_buildwithisbn

Once you enter your ASIN,
Book Launch will create a great page with all the barebones information about your book. booklaunch4_importedpage
Any information that’s imported, from the title of the book to the cover image to descriptive information, can be changed by clicking on it and making the changes you want. Scroll down and you will see the other “Sections” which include: Book Trailer Video; About the Book; Purchase Now; Endorsements; and Share. So, you can change the section called Endorsements to Reviews, which is more appropriate for a fiction title.booklaunch6_changeparts

Since I mentioned distributors earlier, in the purchase section, you can include links for multiple vendors, and they’ll be displayed with the vendor icons once you complete the setup page. booklaunch9

After you’ve added all the information you want for your page, click Launch. There’s no save button on the page, but if you accidentally close the window and then open it up again, the draft page you were working on appears, but it’s not live.

One nice thing about the site is that it has analytics.booklaunch7_viewanalytics You can see how many people visited your page, on what days and whether they clicked on purchase links.booklaunch8_analytics If you pay for a premium account, you can add an email signup bar to your page and collect addresses for your newsletter. If you end up adding additional vendors, you can go back and make changes to each book page. Just go to your Dashboard (the page you’re taken to when you log in) and click the page you want to change.

Don’t forget to set up your page’s custom domain. They walk you through how to do that here. Don’t worry about step 5 of 6. They make it seem like you have to share the page before you can launch it, but that’s not true. After you give it a custom link, it’s already live.

For a free site, is a great service. However it’s not perfect. One drawback I’ve found is there’s no “undo” button. If you decide to change the background and don’t like it, you can’t just say undo to go back to the original background. You have to sort through a color chart to figure out the color or start over (which you can do by just going back to your dashboard and building a new page with the same ASIN or ISBN). I also couldn’t find a way to remove the blank image icons in the “Endorsements” section. When I uploaded an image to the author image section, there didn’t appear to be a way to resize it, either. These are small in the grand scheme of things, but they were a little frustrating when I tried to customize my page. Perhaps you need a premium membership to get more options.

Overall, I think Booklaunch’s free plan is a great option and the perfect price.

Author: RJ Crayton

RJ Crayton is a former journalist turned novelist. By day, she writes thrillers with a touch of romance. By night, she practices the art of ninja mom. To learn more about her or her books, visit her website or her Author Central page.

30 thoughts on “Free Service Makes Lovely Landing Pages for your Books”

  1. As always RJ, you provide us with intriguing information in the publishing world. I can’t wait to give this a try. It seems a nice way to gain visibility. Thank you for a needed post.

    1. One book per page.
      You can upgrade and create unlimited pages for your books if needed. Upgrading unlocks a slew of other really handy features too!

  2. I think they will let you have up to five titles free, or something like that. I set this up but haven’t launched it because I’m just not sure it’s going to be worth the money to integrate it into my web site in a way that keeps my url and allows me to build my mailing list (I don’t see much point in doing it without that, though if I didn’t HAVE a web site, I would be grateful for it). Very curious to hear if anyone has done this and has seen results (or lack thereof) from it. I also agree about those empty head shots. I went and grabbed head shots off the internet, but I feel a little leery of doing that without getting permission from my reviewers, so that’s an extra four or five steps for each page before I could launch them. As always, thanks for a useful post!

    1. Yes, I, too don’t know if it’s worth the cost to integrate it into your own site, though that would be ideal. I think the pages look great and they’re awesome for people who want something a little sleeker than they might get with a WordPress or Blogger hosted site.

    2. If you’re using WordPress, there’s a nifty plugin that makes it really easy to integrate into existing author sites. All you do is copy oyour booklaunch page link and paste into the widget in WordPress and your done!

      Also, all Booklaunch pages have email capture built into them natively that integrate automatically with Mailchimp and Aweber. No extra coding or development necessary. You do have to upgrade for that though. Hope it helps.

  3. I did one for my novel, Aisuru, after hearing about it on The Self Publishing Podcast. I thought the page ended up being quite nice, though the free options were a little limiting (like not being able to add direct sales links though I figured a way around that LOL), but still it worked well. You can see if it here if anyone is curious:

    The one thing I haven’t figured out and that the service itself doesn’t really help with is what you do with that page once its done, i.e. how to actually use it. Why send someone there versus my own website to learn about my book, for example? Things like that.

      1. I’m going to jump in here and RJ can add to and/or correct me – I personally don’t consider it a promotion tool as much as it is a way around distributor guidelines. I don’t know about D2D, but Smashwords will not put a book into distribution if it has purchase links to Amazon in it. I know for certain Apple (iBooks) will reject it with competitor links in it. This way, if you use the Booklaunch URL instead, it covers all the bases no matter where people want to purchase the book (as in “other books by aron joice” with links to each one type of thing). Plus, if you don’t have your own website, you can direct people to the Booklaunch page via social networking instead of limiting yourself to one purchase link in your post.

        1. Ooohhhh! That is a good idea, using it for a single quick link in the back of the book, especially for eBooks.

          I didn’t have that issue since Aisuru was my first so no other links to do other than my site, but will keep that in mind for book two.

        2. That is interesting. I just set up my first book, but can’t seem to make the dashboard, settings bits disappear when I use the custom URL. Also the remove video bubble, add purchase…bubble don’t go away. That is a bit of an eyesore. Overall, the page looks good, just have to learn more in set up. RJ you did a great job explaining, it is me.

    1. I agree with Brooks here. It’s a great place to send people if you’re using a distributor because it links to all the purchase places in a really clear, obvious way.

      Linking to your own web site’s book page would be fine, as well. The question is whether your own book page looks as sleek and well laid out as the booklaunch page. I’m using a standard template rather than having my site designed, so I think the booklaunch page presents the book page a tad bit sleeker and more inviting.

  4. I don’t quite see what this does that my website or goodreads author page does not do.

    Anyone able to explain in very simple terms because I really do get confused with tech stuff!?

    1. It can do the same thing as your website if you’re pretty fluent in HTML or get it designed professionally with books in mind. The only thing that is different about is that it’s a page meant to be visually pleasing and direct people to buy your book at all locations.

      Many people use a standard web template (via blogger or WordPress) and shoehorn their book information onto the page, and it looks like a regular old page on their website. This simply gives you a look that’s geare toward selling books.

      It could be about the same as your web page. I would contend it’s much more geared toward getting a reader to buy your book than the Goodreads book page (which is geared toward information, not purchases).

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