Why is cover art so important?
Beyond all the clichés, a book’s cover art plays an increasingly vital role in modern-day bookselling. With a majority of passionate readers now finding their books online, any book’s cover art must quickly attract their attention by standing out, communicating the book’s content and tone, and demonstrating its ‘production value’ — that is, to show the reader that they are looking at a professional-grade book.
This last point is especially important with independent publishing. When a reader considers whether to read a book, they tend to weigh up the potential costs: not just the financial cost of buying a book, but the time investment of reading it as well. A rough-around-the-edges cover design may suggest to some readers that little care has gone into the writing — which is usually not the case.
What is the benefit of professional book cover art?
Getting a professional book designer to work on your cover art isn’t just about making it look nice (though that’s important too, don’t get us wrong). It’s also about making sure that it’s fit for the market. The book designers at Reedsy have years of traditional publishing experience in their respective genres — they have an understanding of the prevailing trends and can help you create a book cover that signals the kind of book you’re publishing while also offering something new.
The ideal result is for casual browsers to be able to look at your cover art and immediately know what sort of book it is.
Will professional book cover art actually help me sell more copies?
There are many elements that factor into a reader’s purchase — but by and large, the answer is yes. Reedsy recently ran an experiment where we asked our professional designers to rebrand existing indie books. Using A/B testing with Facebook ads, we pitted the new covers against the original non-professional ones and found that the new designs could attract over 50% more interest from readers.
With Reedsy Discovery, where an author’s aim is to attract the interest of prospective reviewers and readers in order to get exposure, this bump that a professional cover offers can be immense.
What should I look for in my ideal professional designer?
The three main factors in picking a designer are genre, budget, and taste.
Even if a designer has a 10-page-long resume, bestselling clients, and impeccable technique — if they don’t have experience in your genre, there’s no guarantee that they’ll deliver you the most appropriate design. If you are searching on Reedsy, you can filter your results by genre.
For your budget, it’s good to consider the level of experience that your designer brings to the table. The general rule of thumb is that the more experienced your designer is (and the more prestigious authors they’ve worked with), the higher you can expect their quotes to be. For a look at how much you can expect their services to cost, check out this post.
And of course, the final aspect to consider is taste: do you genuinely love their work? On each designer’s profile on Reedsy, you can browse through their portfolio and see the work that they’ve chosen to share. This will give you a good idea of their unique sensibilities. Ultimately, if you’re paying for cover art, you don’t want it to be something you grudgingly accept: you want it to be something you love.
Browse through Reedsy’s hand-picked community of book cover designers and ask for a free quote today.