Changing a Book Cover on a Kindle Ebook

by Phyllis Zimbler Miller on September 13, 2012

Image of Lt. Commander Mollie Sanders book cover

As some of you may know, thanks to encouragement from Anthony Wessel of Digital Book Today, my business partner Yael K. Miller designed a new cover for the thriller LT. COMMANDER MOLLIE SANDERS that I wrote with my husband.

Then Anthony ran a poll of the two covers on DBT’s daily list of the top 100 free books in Kindle. When the poll was closed at 122 votes, the results (rounded) were 50% in favor of the new cover, 12.5% in favor of the old cover, and 12.5 chose “neither.”

Here is probably the major problem with any such poll:

There is no way of knowing whether the people who voted are thriller readers. After all, the new cover is supposed to appeal to this target. (And Yael and I studied the covers of the successful thrillers on Amazon before coming up with the new cover.)

Although Anthony pointed out that the “neither” category was relatively high, I decided to go with the NEW cover for now and see what develops.

Now starts more work.

Uploading the new cover on Amazon to the Kindle version was a few clicks, although it appeared that the upload did not work because the old photo remained on display. Eventually, though, the new cover appeared on the Amazon sales page.

BUT …. an Amazon Author Central rep pointed out to me that the cover inside the “Search Inside the Book” feature for the Kindle ebook had not changed. She was unable to help with this issue and told me to contact KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing).

Here is the answer I got from KDP, which I am sharing to help other authors:

I did a test download of the Kindle sample to my Kindle and saw the new cover there. Since that is the case, I have just recreated the SITB file which should update with the new cover in a couple hours.

And when I checked, the new cover was now being displayed inside the “Search Inside the Book” feature.

Now I am going to remind myself — and others — where an old cover has to be switched out for a new cover. Depending on when you check out the links on this list, you may still see the old cover:

Do I think this effort of changing to a new book cover is worth it?

I may never know. But as with everything in book marketing, authors have to be flexible — open to considering different ways of promoting their books.

And here is a very important warning for all authors:

Remember that anyone can make changes to your book’s listing on Shelfari (now owned by Amazon). Make sure you choose the option to get notified when someone updates the info for your book.

In my own case, I discovered that someone gave away a plot twist in my novel MRS. LIEUTENANT when adding info about a minor character. I had to delete that info in order to preserve the plot twist.

© 2012 Miller Mosaic LLC

Phyllis Zimbler Miller is the author of fiction and nonfiction books/ebooks. A new nonfiction ebook of hers is TOP TIPS FOR HOW TO MARKET YOUR BOOK ON AMAZON AND FACEBOOK and her newest fiction ebook is the thriller CIA FALL GUY.

Click here to visit her Amazon author page at

She also has an M.B.A. from The Wharton School and is the co-founder of the online marketing company

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