A fantastic book cover design is the first thing that customers notice. Today, more and more authors are taking the eBook route and publishing their works themselves. They even create their book cover design as they can conjure the whole book in a single image easily.
AI-based online graphics tool make this job more accessible through creating spectacular images within minutes. While the designing process has been improved, users prefer to stick to the fundamentals and time-tested techniques that ensure the success of the design. Moreover, it becomes the identity of the book and is one of the most important marketing tools for selling.
Here are five tips that contribute towards creating an excellent book cover design:
The book cover design must stand out
Just as a logo becomes a brand’s identity, a book cover acts as the face of the book. If you keep the design generic, it will fail to capture the audience’s attention. Make the central character or significant object as the primary focus of the cover. Another factor that helps your cover “pop” is a clever use of contrast and sharp shadows.
Opt for the colors that create a pleasing effect when paired together, such as the combination of teal with orange, black-grey and red, etc. Consider your book cover as a billboard which should have a prime focal point, giving an idea about the book, genre and creating intrigue. As the audience responds better to visual cues, create an image that means something and can capture the interest of prospective readers.
Create the book cover design keeping in mind the target audience
The critical factors that dictate what goes on a book cover is its target audience. The intended reader has to find the image alluring for it to be successful. The key points to remember is the “fiction” genre that appeals to the heart, while “non-fiction” genre appeals to the mind.
For non-fiction books, it is recommended that you use juxtaposition to attract the brain’s attention. As we are appealing to the mind, we need to make use of the elements in a witty fashion and even use gimmicks.
The background should be clean and stable. When we consider fiction books, the book cover design appeals to the emotions, and hence, needs bursting elements such as vibrant colors, action, romance, etc. The book cover alone must be able to entice the excitement for the intended audience.
Keep the design simple and relevant
Often authors get caught up in telling the complete story in their book cover design. This creates overstimulation, and instead of considering the book, the prospective user ends up moving to the next prospect. Overdone as well as simple covers fail to perform. Clean designs and intelligent use of white space can do wonders when it comes to design. Consider the book cover design of author George R.R. Martin. The cover is clean and straightforward while putting the message across.
Creating a minimalist design while conveying the message, is the key to success. One such example is the book cover design for City on the Edge. There are many other bestselling books with a simple and practical design. It all comes down to choosing the correct image so that the user can comprehend and relate to the image.
Choose your font and text placement wisely
Now that you have finalized the pictorial aspect and text for the book cover design, it’s time to pay attention to its placement. Some books have texts only on their book cover, and the result is glorious. Remember that using the correct font and smart typography can work as a visual cue.
Use a review, teaser or tagline cleverly on the book cover design
Once you have zeroed in on the elements for the book cover, add just a tiny bit of more information that creates intrigue. This could be a tagline which hints towards the storyline or a slogan that relates to the plot.
Consider this book cover design for author Nina Laurin’s work of fiction called Girl Last Seen. The sentence “Two missing girls, twenty years apart” shed the tiniest light on the storyline. This encourages the user in picking up the book to find out what happens next.
Another great way to enhance your book cover is adding a great book review that helps the user to decide whether to buy the book or not. Check out another cover design version for the above book.
Armed with these tips and a compelling book cover designing tool, you are all set and ready to design a fantastic book cover design that will help sell your book!
EDITOR’S NOTE: A big thanks to Anne Carton of Designhill for helping me come up with these amazing book cover tips for our readers to enjoy.