Landing Pages

Have you ever wanted to set up an author website but feared all the hassle and cost that comes with it? Would you rather focus your time and energy on writing and publishing instead of dealing with tech?

Have the complexities of setting up an author website forced you to replace it with Amazon Author Page or (even worse!), Facebook page? Are you confused by all the hosting options, setting up your domain, WordPress, themes, plugins, security updates, backups, web builders, and all that you believe is required to bring your site to life?

Have you been using a signup form hosted by your email provider for your reader magnet without considering what you would do if you wanted to switch from, let's say, MailChimp, to MailerLite or ConvertKit?

What if there was a way to create a professional landing page (like this one!) so you can move forward with your goals and future-proof your writing business without taking the focus and time away from what you love? A professional landing page can:

  • Grow your email list
  • Drive book sales
  • Present your author brand to readers

What would you consider a fair price for all of the following?

  • A custom, fully responsive landing page design consistent with your author brand
  • Fully-managed, geographically distributed hosting with no traffic limitations
  • A branded universal book service that works without any setup
  • Working with a team that has been making life easier for indie authors for almost 10 years?

How about ~$4 per month ($50/year)? If that sounds like a great deal, we would love to make it happen for you. Fill out the order form to get the process started or learn more below.

How it works?

STEP 1

Fill out the landing page order form. Then, send us the cover file and any other files that you want to be included on your landing page (upload instructions are included in the order form. If you have any additional artwork that was created in the process of designing your cover or marketing materials, feel free to send source files as well, and we will use whatever works best for the background.

STEP 2

Within a week, you will receive a confirmation we have everything needed to create your landing page and we will send you a PayPal invoice for $20 ($50 for 1Y package). Once this upfront fee is paid, we will create your site within a timeframe specified for your package. (In many cases we will deliver much faster than this final deadline, depending on how many orders are placed before yours. If you are in a rush to have the landing page done, select a higher package and order early.)

STEP 3

If you want to change something about the design, we will make the changes promptly. At this point, we will also integrate your email marketing service with the signup form, if your package and design include it. Once you approve the design, we will set the site up with your domain (or you can use our domain if you are not buying your own just yet).

STEP 4

You can get back to writing, growing your email list, and converting first-time readers into lifelong fans knowing that your landing page is always there and you don't need to think about it. 30 days after your original payment, you will be automatically charged the remainder of the fee for your package.

STEP 5

After the hosting period included for your package expires, PayPal will charge you the hosting renewal fee for the next period (which is one or two years, depending on your package). If you decide to cancel, you can do it on your PayPal account or just email us. If you discover something that you would like to change after a while that you missed initially or your needs evolve, let us know.

Pricing

Price
  • Custom design
  • Included hosting
  • Hosting renewal
  • Universal Book Link
  • Custom short links
  • Background options
  • Initial designs
  • Buttons / retailer links
  • Sign up form
  • Custom post-signup page
  • eBook Publishing 101
  • Print-on-Demand Publishing 101
  • Turnaround time

1Y

$50
  • Custom design:
  • Included hosting: 12 months
  • Hosting renewal: $50/year
  • Universal Book Link: Amazon (e-book only)
  • Custom short links:
  • Background options: Color
  • Initial designs: 1
  • Buttons / retailer links: 1 / 1
  • Sign up form: External link only
  • Custom post-signup page:
  • eBook Publishing 101: 1 month
  • Print-on-Demand Publishing 101:
  • Turnaround time: Up to 15 days

2Y

$100 $90
  • Custom design:
  • Included hosting: 24 months
  • Hosting renewal: $100 each two years
  • Universal Book Link: Amazon (incl. paperback)
  • Custom short links: Up to 3
  • Background options: Image (incl. cover-based)
  • Initial designs: 2
  • Buttons / retailer links: 2 / ∞
  • Sign up form: External link only
  • Custom post-signup page:
  • eBook Publishing 101: 1 year
  • Print-on-Demand Publishing 101: 3 months
  • Turnaround time: Up to 10 days

3Y

$150 $100
  • Custom design:
  • Included hosting: 36 months
  • Hosting renewal: $50/year
  • Universal Book Link: Amazon and Apple
  • Custom short links: Up to 10
  • Background options: Slideshow (example)
  • Initial designs: 3
  • Buttons / retailer links: 2 / ∞
  • Sign up form: Built-in (embedded)
  • Custom post-signup page:
  • eBook Publishing 101: As long as hosting is active
  • Print-on-Demand Publishing 101: 6 months
  • Turnaround time: Up to 7 days

To take advantage of this special deal for The Alliance of Independent Authors friends be sure to place your order no later than December 12th and include a note in the order form to indicate you found us through ALLi.

  • All packages include everything in the lower tiers and the additional features.

  • The Universal Book Link is a service that redirects readers to the right store for their location (for example, UK visitors will go to Amazon.co.uk). All plans include UBL for Amazon e-book while the highest plan includes this localization service for Apple Books additionally.

  • When placing an order, you can define a set of short links in your domain (like https://YourDomainName.com/bonus or https://YourDomainName.com/starter). These easy-to-remember and easy-to-type links will redirect readers to your desired location (for example, a newsletter signup form hosted by your email marketing service). You can change the destination page later (to Amazon Author Page or your series started page, for example) without altering the link.

  • eBook Publishing 101 and Print-on-Demand 101 are detailed, up-to-date book publishing courses in video format based on our experience helping authors publish books since 2012. You will get free access to these courses for the time specified for your package. The highest tier is the only one that includes access to the eBook Publishing 101 and all the updates for as long as you continue hosting with us.

Not a subscription fan? No problem! For a one-off $300 fee, you can get everything included in the 3Y package above, including 3-year hosting and universal book service, plus website source files (no need to buy the $100 add-on). However, unlike with subscriptions, there is no hosting fee guarantee, so if you choose to continue hosting with us after three years, you will only be able to do so at the then-current price (either recurring or a one-time). Please note that universal book service will only work with our hosting, but we can create a custom short link for you, that would continue to redirect readers to your chosen non-localized store even with your own hosting as described here.

FAQ

We recommend reading through this entire section from the very beginning to the end to fully understand what you can expect from this service. However, if you don't have time to read through six thousand words right now, you can use the interactive list of questions to quickly jump to answers that are the most important to you. You can use your browser's back button to go back to this list (or use ALT + right arrow shortcut on your keyboard).

  1. Who are you?
  2. What is included with this service?
  3. What is NOT included in the service price?
  4. Can I see some examples of the sites you designed?
  5. How do Universal Book Links and custom short links work?
  6. This sounds too good to be true. How do I get a refund if this service does not meet my expectations?
  7. What do I need to send you so can create my landing page?
  8. How much will I need to pay after the "included hosting" period ends?
  9. Is this a WordPress website?
  10. I have an existing site. Can I use this service?
  11. Will I receive website files with this service?
  12. How can I change the landing page content?
  13. Is Content Management System (CMS) included?
  14. I would love to have the branded universal book service but I don't need a landing page. What's the price?
  15. I have another question.

Who are you?

This service is provided by the Formatting Experts team. We have been making indie authors' lives easier with quality book formatting and cover design services since 2012.

So far we have been designing and hosting websites exclusively for authors who use our other services. However, our capacity to provide these time-intensive formatting and design services for new authors is limited so we can't provide them to all interested authors. Additionally, not everyone can afford or wants to use these services at their current stage of publishing journey and even the already affordable price we offer the full website design at might still be too much for many authors early on.

So we decided to develop a service that would allow us to support all indie authors at the lowest possible price without sacrificing the quality.

If you need book design services, you can learn more about how we can help you over at FormattingExperts.com and if you decide to work with us, we have good news: we can create a landing page for you (such as the one you would get with this service) at no extra charge and with free lifetime hosting.

If you are considering working with us for your formatting but would like to start marketing your book before your manuscript is ready to publish, we have great news for you. We can deduct the price you pay for your landing page package from our formatting fee, as long as you sign up for formatting service before your included hosting expires. What's more, once you sign up for formatting, we will also cancel any recurring charges, so you will never again have to pay for your landing page hosting. If you base your decision to order a landing page solely on this formatting-related offer, please contact our formatting team first, to confirm we would be able to work on your book. This offer does not apply to 1Y/$50 package.

If you don't need services for your interior and cover, or we are not a good match for you for any reason (e.g. our lead time for these services is too long for your needs), read on to learn more about landing page design as a standalone service.

What is included with this service?

  • Custom landing page design.
  • Managed free hosting, included in the service price for the period indicated in the pricing table above for your chosen package (one year for 1Y package, two years for 2Y package, and three years for 3Y package).
  • Universal branded book link service developed by us so your website can include one link for each retailer that will redirect your readers to the right country store for Amazon (we support both the print and eBook editions) and Apple Books. It will be automatically be used for any Amazon or Apple link to your book included on your landing page and you will also be able to use those universal links anywhere else you want to (emails, social media, a conversation with a potential reader).
  • Custom short links you can use to future-proof your marketing.
  • Access to our detailed, up-to-date publishing courses.

Take a look at the pricing table to compare the scope of these included services provided with each package.

What is NOT included in the service price?

  • Website files you can upload to your hosting (source files and a license to use them without our hosting is available as a one-time paid add-on: see this answer for details).
  • Content Management System that allows you to edit the website content yourself. (For more information, see this answer. Public availability of our CMS is expected soon. If it's an absolute must for you, let us know: the details are provided below.)
  • Layout or non-critical content changes communicated after you approve the final landing page and it goes live. You can learn more about our content changes classification here.

Can I see some examples of the sites you designed?

Sure! We have designed the page you are looking at right now using the same technology and process we will use for your landing page. So that's one example.

A recent example of a landing page we designed for an author (by following the process we are using for this service) can be found here.

An earlier example of a landing page created before we had the current process in place can be seen here.

Notice how fast these sites are and compare them to your typical WordPress site. This is thanks to optimized website code and images as well as a distributed hosting that delivers a pre-rendered page from a server location that is closest to each web visitor.

Would you like to see our skills in the wider area of author website design and development, beyond landing pages? Here are several examples, in chronological order:

  • Website for aviation-related books by a veteran pilot and air crash investigator Larry Vance whose book about MH370 (designed and formatted by our team) received widespread media attention.
  • An online version of a freely available non-fiction book by a professor of Solvay Brussels School, Jean-Michel Paul: The Economics of Discontent. It includes smart footnotes, graphs with captions, a lot of source references, and an interactive table of contents for each chapter.
  • A website for a fiction (crime) author Alex Dunlevy, which features embedded audio tracks.
  • Website for Jeffrey Buchanan, the author of fiction dealing with social issues
  • Author website for a science-fiction author, Anthony Almato featuring a "mini-blog" and a customizable "blog post" feed for Anthony's Amazon Author Page fully managed with our Content Management System so he can easily edit it alongside the messages to readers shown on the site itself.
  • A companion "wiki" site for in-universe lore of Free Worlds of Humanity series. This site required an advanced content management system so the author can easily add new and edit existing content himself. Category pages and links to other articles are generated automatically as the author adds new articles. The site includes a feature that creates a fully formatted and structured Word document with all the content on the site with each change, to make it possible for the author to easily reference the up-to-date content.

In the future, we will feature select landing pages created with this service here and in a separate showcase section. If you don't mind your landing page being included in such a listing, make sure to let us know that's the case once your site is live.

When you want to share a link to your book with your readers, what do you do? Do you simply send them an Amazon.com link? What about UK readers, will you send them a second link? And what if your reader is in Germany? Listing so many links is messy, especially when there are 18 Amazon marketplaces and 51 country-specific versions of Apple Books.

The solution to this problem is Universal Book Link (UBL), which allows you to provide a single link for each retailer to your readers and they will automatically be redirected to the site, which is the right one for their location. There are several companies out there providing similar tools, both free and paid, so why would you use ours? Here are some good reasons to use the service bundled with your landing page:

  • You don't need to think about it. If you simply link to your landing page from your newsletter and elsewhere, you don't even need to think about how the service works or understand it because it's "hidden" behind the buttons on your site. Whenever we add Amazon or Apple link to your landing page, we use your branded Universal Book Service (unless you decide to opt-out for any reason).
  • It's hassle-free. There is nothing to set up so you save time on clicking through web interfaces and trying to generate links for your books. Our UBL is designed in a way that allows you to simply use your book's ASIN or ISBN, without any configuration required.
  • It's fast. Some services take several seconds to redirect your reader to the right store. It doesn't seem like a lot, but in 'Internet time', a couple of seconds feels like an eternity. If your reader first needs to click away from your site to the service landing page which also isn't the speediest one around, it all adds up.
  • It's branded and invisible. The links use your website's domain, so your reader's experience with your author brand is consistent. There is no intermediate landing page or any annoying message shown to your readers after they click the link and before they get to the retailer's page, so is nothing standing between readers and your book. This means readers won't wonder why your domain suggests you are a genius if you get what we mean (we are not saying you are not, it's a joke!).
  • You don't need to pay anything extra for it. Our goal is to make authors' lives easier and this is one of the ways we make that happen, without any added cost.
  • It works for Amazon and Apple Author Pages, too! As far as we are aware, we are the first to provide an easy way to link to your author profiles on those two retailers, with the same country redirection you have come to expect from book links. So you no longer need to choose whether a reader should see just one book in their country store OR your Amazon.com author page with all the books listed and ready to buy but with the downside of non-US readers needing to find the books on their marketplace.
  • It works for both the paperback and ebook. You don't need to give up on promoting your print editions to non-US readers or use two different services for your links to cover both. Our links work for any edition on Amazon, whether product pages for the two editions are linked together or not.

On top of all that, it works brilliantly with custom short links on your website. Let's say your landing page domain is AuthorLandingPages.com and you want to set a custom short link that will automatically take readers to your book, like this one https://AuthorLandingPages.com/fwoh. Go on, click it. This link takes you to Anthony's novel in Kindle Store that's correct for your country. What about the print edition? You can ask us to create a link like this one for your print edition: https://AuthorLandingPages.com/fwoh-print.

What about Apple Books? Here is an example of a custom short link that automatically redirects readers to the proper Apple Books site: https://AuthorLandingPages.com/gary

Try it yourself

If you are not interested in a detailed description of how our Universal Book Link service works you can skip right to the next section. Your landing page links will use the Universal Book Link service by default and you won't have to think or do anything about it. You won't ever need to "build" your links like described below unless you want to use UBL off-site (e.g. in your email marketing or ads).

Want to make sure the Universal Book service works with your book? This site includes Universal Book Link service for testing purposes only (do not use our domain to share links with readers), so you are free to experiment.

If you click through the link to Anthony's book above, you can see ASIN for his Kindle ebook is B09DXLGQJT and ISBN-10 (not ISBN-13 which you always use) for the hardback is 1737458020. So to use the UBL service on this site you would simply link to:

The /ubl/ bit stands for Universal Book Service while /a/ bit stands for, you guessed it, Amazon. Then there is either ASIN for ebook or ISBN-10 for the print edition (which you can find on your book's Amazon product page, just below the ISBN-13, or simply copy it from your browser's address bar, as that's what Amazon uses for print edition URLs).

Go ahead, copy these links, and replace ASIN or ISBN with your own to see this configuration-free service in action.

Now let's try Apple Books. Anthony's ebook is enrolled in KDP Select at the moment so it's not available on Apple Books. With this in mind, we will use a book from one of our other favorite author clients, Gary, to show how Apple Book links work. (If you are a UK-based football fan, the book's title might sound familiar.)

The /ab/ stands for Apple Books. Apple Books link requires an EPUB ISBN-13 that was used with Apple or an ebook distributor. If you haven't bought yours from an ISBN agency but used an ebook distributor to sell on Apple Books, you will find the ISBN they assigned on your dashboard with the distributor. If you used the same distributor to sell your book on Kobo or Scribd, you will find this ISBN on your book's pages on their sites.

If you can't find the ISBN but know the Apple Books page address (like https://books.apple.com/us/book/the-gallant-pioneers/id1594236777), this will be enough for us to make it work with your landing page but for this live example, you must use an ISBN. If you have no idea what yours is, you can test it with any other ebook out there that was published on Apple Books.

Future-proof marketing and flexibility

One of the great things about custom short links is their flexibility. Let's say you just published your first book and want to send your readers to Amazon to buy it. So in your order form, you ask us to set up a short link "/starter" to link to your book's Amazon product page via our Universal Book Service. You then use this link in your email signature, in ads, and some printed materials. This works great and you generate sales not only in the US but also in the UK, France, Germany, and elsewhere.

A couple of years later you have three books out and now you would prefer readers to go to your reader magnet page to sign up to your email list to receive that first book for free (which makes sense, as you now have more books to sell and building a long-term relationship with your readers is the way to go). You don't need to change your email signature or alter anything that was already printed. You can simply ask us and we will change this "/starter" link to redirect to wherever you want it to go.

Possibilities with custom links are endless. They give you the freedom to redirect where you want readers to go at any given time. This is especially useful when your links get copied by other sites, in which case you can't change the link itself. Now you don't have to worry about this, because your short links give you the freedom to change the final destination for each link at any time. Right now adding a link is only possible when ordering your landing page and changing them requires emailing us, but as soon as we add CMS to your site you will be able to add and edit links yourself, at any time.

This sounds too good to be true. How do I get a refund if this service does not meet my expectations?

We are glad you feel that way! About the "too good to be true" part, that is.

We can't read your mind but we are quite sure you will be happy with your new landing page and the overall value we provide for the price. But if you are not, we offer a 100% money-back guarantee.

The only upfront payment you make before seeing your new site is $20 ($50 for 1Y package). If you are not happy with the design or were expecting something else, simply provide your feedback and we will work to make sure you are 100% happy. If you don't like the revised design or decide it's just not possible for us to achieve what you expect, you can request a refund of that initial payment.

Whenever you would like to get your money back, for any reason, please be sure to send us an email rather than requesting a refund from PayPal or initiating a chargeback with your credit card company. The latter is a digital payment equivalent of hitting someone in the face without communicating what they did to offend you.

We are an author-friendly team and we aim to meet your expectations: if we don't, we will refund your money promptly, but we need to know that something is not quite right. Chargebacks, PayPal refunds, and disputes are the last resort solutions that should be reserved for those companies that don't deliver the service or refuse to communicate with you to find a solution.

The remainder of the fee for your package would be charged a month from the time you paid the upfront payment. If that date is close and you think we might not be able to reply in time, you can cancel the recurring payment on your PayPal account (although we would refund that second payment if it's charged by the time we see your email). If you want to do this, make sure that you cancel the recurring payment, rather than starting a dispute on the original payment or requesting PayPal to refund it to you.

What do I need to send you so can create my landing page?

Essentials

The only thing that is required is a text to be used on the landing page. Usually, it would be the same blurb you use with Amazon and other retailers, but it's your call.

Ideally, you would also have a professionally designed cover to use on the landing page.

Page backgrounds

If you do have a layered source file for the book cover from your designer (usually it's a Photoshop .psd file but we can work with virtually any file including .ai and .xcf), we can use it to create a matching background for your website free of charge. This not only saves you money but also ensures the final art will work with your landing page perfectly. However, if you would like to use a custom background created by another designer, feel free to send it alongside your cover (details on how to do that are provided in the order form). With 3rd-party custom backgrounds, we might either use a layered source file for that artwork (if available) to make necessary adjustments if needed or we can provide information on how it can be improved by the original artist.

If you have neither a finished book cover just yet nor any custom artwork available, the background will be a solid color, a gradient, or a photograph (chosen by us or you) that sets the tone for the site. An example of such a photograph used in the absence of the book cover can be seen on this page, as well as on slideshow example page.

Our order form asks for more optional information that can help us make your landing page even better, but none of it is required.

Domain name

We strongly recommend you also buy a domain name to use with your new site. You don't need it to place an order now and we provide easy-to-follow video tutorials to guide you through the process.

We recommend three companies to register your domains which we use ourselves for our domains.

  • CloudFlare, a web security company that provides no-markup pricing for domain names, which means you only pay what they pay to a domain registry (an organization in control of domain names). They also provide built-in analytics at the DNS level (meaning, no 3rd-party tracking code on the website is required for it to work) and powerful and flexible domain management features (such as URL redirections). They are the most reliable and affordable choice long-term. They also provide free DNS management for free if you want to use some of their features without transferring your domain to them. One potential downside is that if you want to contact their support, the assistance they can provide for free accounts might be limited. However, we will send you easy-to-follow step-by-step tutorials on buying and using your domain, so you won't need to ever contact them to set up your landing page.
  • NameCheap. They are the best "commercial" alternative (beware of the frequent marketing and cross-sells which will be sent by email, though) with good, honest support which directly addresses your questions (which is not a given among the domain and hosting companies). They provide affordable domain pricing (around $10 per year for .com domains) as well as a complete set of free essential features, including email redirection (so you can redirect emails sent to addresses in your domain to your usual inbox).
  • If you are in Europe and need a local invoice for tax purposes, the third good option is OVH, which also offers great prices and included services, but their domain management interface is not so beginner friendly (even we, with a full understanding of what we are doing, prefer the speed and ease of domain management provided by the other two companies).

Namecheap regularly runs promotions that let you buy your first domain for next to nothing (e.g. $0.99) to draw customers in but the price they will charge for subsequent renewals will make up for that difference. If you are always on the lookout for the absolute best deal, you can buy a domain with Namecheap for the first year and later transfer it to CloudFlare for consistent, no-surprise pricing going forward.

We provide free video tutorials on registering and setting up the domain with Cloudflare and Namecheap.

How much will I need to pay after the "included hosting" period ends?

The standard hosting fee for your landing page is $50/year. The PayPal payment used to pay for the website design and the included hosting sets up a recurring charge for hosting, billed in intervals specific to your selected package.

For the 1Y and 3Y packages, you will be billed $50 once a year after the included hosting expires (one and three years, respectively). For the 2Y package, you will be billed $100 every two years after the first two years.

If you decide to discontinue hosting with us, you can cancel the recurring payments on your PayPal account on your own or email us to ask us to cancel on our end. If you were meaning to cancel but miss the renewal date, please send us an email within 30 days of the charge and we will refund the full payment. See our approach to continuing hosting even after cancellation to support you in the transition.

We commit to never increasing hosting charges for existing websites as long as you continue your subscription, so you can be confident that your yearly cost will never exceed $50, no matter which package you chose. However, from time to time we may have a special deal that will allow you to save on hosting (e.g. when you pay for more years in advance than your package requires): if you want to be notified when such offers are available, sign up for marketing communication when you order your landing page (otherwise we will only send you transactional emails and critical communication about your website and you would remain unaware of any deals). You can unsubscribe from promotional messages at any time.

Is this a WordPress website?

No. The purpose of a monolithic Content Management System (CMS) like WordPress is to allow non-technical website owners or editors to change the website's content and layout without the need for assistance from a web designer or a technical person. It's relatively easy to install and start using without any prior knowledge, so its popularity is partly caused by non-technical folks offering website design or setup services. Maintaining and hosting it, as well as making sure it meets its most important purpose (which is to help you achieve your goals), is an entirely different matter.

While this approach to website creation is common, it comes with many disadvantages: slow load speeds, unnecessary complexity, databases, frequent updates for the underlying software, theme, and plugins (which carry the risk of breaking your site), vulnerability to hacking, backups that are challenging to create and restore, lack a powerful version control system for the content. It also requires more server processing power to run, inflating the hosting costs. While some of these disadvantages can be worked around by caching, firewalls, strong passwords, moving your admin dashboard to a non-standard path to prevent automated login attempts, offline WordPress installation for content management, and other complex solutions, why bother with WordPress in the first place if your website doesn't need it? Is "easy 5-minute setup with no technical support required" something that you are willing to sacrifice your long-term satisfaction for?

WordPress doesn't make your site better or more powerful: it's simply a tool to create and edit the content, which is then transformed into files that are needed to display your site: HTML, CSS, JavaScript, images, font files. The same or a better result can be achieved with different processes and tools. Modern development tools benefit you as the author and provide a better experience for web designers and developers (so they can focus on creating great sites rather than working around WordPress limitations and bugs or spending nights and weekends to bring existing sites back online after they go down all of a sudden).

One of the reasons we can offer custom design with included hosting for a price that is lower than your usual hosting fees alone or self-serve website builder platforms is because we took a different approach. We create the files for your website offline and then we upload them to our distributed hosting. In addition to the developer productivity (and enjoyment) our WordPress-free process provides many benefits for your site:

  • It's fast. The website can be served right away to website visitors without the server needing extra time and processing power to read information from the database and render the page. The site's files are stored in multiple locations across the world, so no matter whether your visitor is in the US, Europe, Africa, or Asia, they load the files from the server closest to them to get the fastest loading speeds possible. This happens automatically.

  • It's stable. Once your website is online and works as you expect, it will continue to work the same way in the future. No functionality or security software updates in the background are required to keep your site live, so there is no risk the site will stop working all of the sudden.

  • It's secure. There is no complex software exposed to the Internet that could be used to hack your site, alter its content, or spread malware. People (including web and security experts) sometimes make mistakes. With this in mind, the good news is that the security and stable functioning of our sites does not depend on the expertise or proactive actions of people supporting them. It's simply a result of the technology itself. Hacking a pre-rendered page is like trying to hack a piece of paper: it's just not possible.

  • It can handle any traffic you throw at it. Pre-rendered website files can be delivered much faster and require fewer resources at scale. This means that if you do get hundreds or thousands of visitors at the same moment, the site will continue to work just as fast and as reliably as it does when you are the only person visiting it.

  • It always stays online. To be completely transparent, we admit that a coordinated, targeted DDoS attack on your site, any other site we host, or infrastructure supporting them could take the site down for a short amount of time. However, we have taken steps to protect against such an occurrence. If you are truly paranoid or have a paid campaign or a promotion coming up that would become a disaster if a botnet owner wanted to ruin it (which is highly unlikely unless you write books about cybersecurity, law enforcement, cryptocurrency, or are a high-profile activist), there is an easy protection layer you can add: CloudFlare. It's the same company we recommended registering your domain with. They built their business around protecting high-profile sites from such attacks, so you would be in good company. When you register your domain with them (or change DNS servers to theirs, for free, if you registered your domain with another provider and don't want to transfer it to CloudFlare), they will protect you against such attacks at the domain (DNS) level, before the attacker even gets "connected" to your site on our hosting.

If you think WordPress can provide anything crucial for you that non-WordPress site can't, please let us know. We won't build your site on WordPress even if you paid us thousands of dollars per year (rather than just $50), because we value our sanity, enjoyment of what we do, and an ability to help as many authors as possible much more than cash (using WordPress would deprive us of all of that). However, we will suggest a solution we can provide or recommend a third-party service. As a last resort, if your point turns out to be valid and WordPress is truly the only way to achieve what you need, we will point you to an author-focused WordPress designer who will be happy to create such a site for you. We won't charge you anything for the evaluation of that "WordPress-only" feature, so at the very least you will discover a great solution that you wouldn't otherwise know of. At best, you will break free of WordPress, save money and be much happier with your author website experience going forward.

I have an existing site. Can I use this service?

If you have an existing website and domain for your author site but would like to have a beautiful and effective landing page for your reader magnet, we can make that happen. Even if your site is built on WordPress, which we are not fond of, as you can read about above.

You can either buy a new domain just for this purpose or we will provide a step-by-step 5-minute setup guide on how to configure a subdomain for your site (e.g. https://bonus.AuthorLandingPages.com if your site's domain is https://AuthorLandingPages.com) to work with landing page hosted by us, without affecting your main site at all.

Your own universal book service and ability to create custom short links comes with each landing page we create, so if you are currently paying for a service like geni.us (GeniusLink) to provide readers with one link that will take them to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, or European stores depending on their location, you can cancel it and our landing page will pay for itself. (The price for our service is $50/year, while GeniusLink charges $50 a month for a custom domain name itself and $5/mo for their unbranded service. In other words, their unbranded service adds up to $60 a year and the service with your custom domain would cost you a whopping $660 a year. The total yearly cost of our service, with the custom landing page design and hosting included as well as other benefits listed in the pricing table, is $50 per year.)

Will I receive website files with this service?

One of the reasons we can offer such affordable pricing and make this service sustainable in the long-term on its own (without funding from other services provided by our team) as well as commit development time to add new features to benefit all authors is because we know the value the overall service provides is a no-brainer for as long as you need to keep your landing page online. Because of this, we bet on the majority of authors who are serious about their author career (and will continue to publish new books) on hosting with us for many years to come, so they can focus on what they do best.

This is why after you approve the landing page set up in a staging environment, we make it live with your domain, but you will not receive the website files. In addition to the above business reasons, this also saves us the extra time required to provide standalone website files that do not depend on our hosting, as the majority of authors using this service wouldn't have any use for them.

The open nature of the web means that, in theory, you could download the files required for your site directly from your web browser, but you would not have a license from us to host it on your own. Also, the custom links wouldn't continue to work if you did that, as that feature is provided by our servers (only once you want to venture out on your own, we create the files this feature needs to work on any web server with no pre-configuration required).

If you would like to have these files on hand we can prepare and share the website files for a one-time fee of $100. With that extra charge, you will receive all files that you can host on any hosting (with no software, database, or server-side scripting language like PHP required) with no "connection" to our hosting infrastructure alongside a license to use them (and modify, if you wish and have the required knowledge) on your own.

You can decide to pay that extra fee when we first set up your website or at any time in the future. We guarantee that you will never pay more than the one-time $100 fee for this (in addition to any fees you paid for the initial package and subsequent hosting renewals). We want you to be confident in the price if you decide that's something you want to have in the future, so each landing page is locked at the rate which is current at the time of initial website design, even if we increase our prices in the future.

Any custom links created for your site by us (such as a link to your newsletter subscription, e.g. YourLandingPageDomainName.com/bonus) will continue to redirect to the final URL, the same way they did with our hosting. We would love for you to continue hosting with us for as long as you need your landing page, but we have taken steps to ensure that any essential features which are critical for your long-term author career (such as reader-friendly newsletter links) continue to work if you decide to host the site yourself. We will also provide you with instructions on how to change the destination URL to a new one just in case you need to.

Custom links will continue to work on your hosting, but universal book service links will not. We currently have no plans to implement this feature outside of our hosting. However, there is a workaround if you think you might need this: you can ask us to create a custom short link for your book alongside your initial landing page design (e.g. YourLandingPageDomainName.com/book1-amzn) with a target URL being a branded universal book link service while you are hosting with us, which in turn redirects readers to the book's Amazon page for their country (don't worry, it all happens instantly as you can test yourself here!). Then, when you want to move away from our hosting and pay the $100 add-on fee, we can change the target URL to your book's Amazon.com page (or any other link you prefer), so readers using the /book1-amzn link will continue to see your book (although without the benefit of the link being universal also for the UK and the rest of Europe).

Please note that it might take anywhere from two to three weeks for us to provide website source files, as we prioritize work required to support new and existing sites on our hosting. If you make a decision about moving away from our hosting shortly before the hosting renewal date, we can cancel the upcoming fee and continue hosting your site at no extra charge until the source files are ready and we have a confirmation from you that we can discontinue the service.

We will never discontinue service due to non-payment or any other reason on our own without adequate notice and making sure you were able to reply. So if you have gone away on a month-long offline writing retreat to fully focus on your story and the renewal payment failed for any reason (or you canceled it beforehand but forgot to tell us), you can be assured that your landing page will still be there when you get back.

Even though the hosting is hassle-free for you and you don't need to think about it at all, you can move away from the site hosted by us at any time, without contacting us. To achieve this, you will need to change your domain configuration with your domain registrar: specifically, you will need to remove or alter 'A' and 'CNAME' DNS records, which were used originally to point your domain to our hosting. However, you will continue to be billed for hosting unless you cancel the recurring charge on your PayPal account or inform us about your decision (if you made a decision but forgot to cancel, be sure to let us know within 30 days of a charge so we can refund the funds or credit them towards the fee for the $100 add-on).

If you do have any concerns about moving away from our hosting in the future, please send us an email before placing an order, so we can address them.

How can I change the landing page content?

Currently, you will need to send us an email and request that we make the changes for you.

All critical changes are always applied promptly and without a charge. Some examples of critical changes:

  • Your landing page button points to a series page on Amazon but the previous URL stops working all of sudden (and you need to change it to a new one).
  • You discover that your cover designer used unlicensed photographs or fonts on your cover (and you need to take the cover off your site immediately).
  • You have a critical pre-scheduled marketing campaign coming up in a couple of days to grow your email list but your email marketing provider experiences technical issues (or you can't access your account temporarily) and you need to switch the signup form on the landing page to use a different email provider.

For non-critical changes that arise from your change of mind after the landing page is final, we reserve the right to ask you for a reasonable fee to cover the work required to make the changes. We will bill based on the time and effort to apply the non-critical changes, rather than the scope of the changes.

Whenever there are changes to make, whether critical or non-critical, make sure to send them all at once, with complete text as it should be after changes, to make it clear right away what the new content needs to be. This will make it easier for us, so we will be able to make the change faster. If the changes are minor, sending a description of changes in addition to the full text, might help us update your site quicker and charge less (or nothing at all).

In the unlikely situation that there is a technical issue with the website's functioning, we will fix it immediately and, of course, free of charge.

Once your landing page is ready, we will provide an email address where you can send any service-related requests.

If you feel that editing your website on your own would be useful, take a look at the next answer.

Is Content Management System (CMS) included?

We get it: having to email someone to make changes to your website is not ideal if you expect to need to alter the content often, or want to create additional landing pages for new campaigns. Content management is something you would expect from any website (as it comes bundled with popular website-building software such as WordPress). While we have a content management system in place to support the websites that we have been designing for our existing clients, it's not open to all authors for this landing page service just yet. Seems weird, doesn't it?

Our priorities with the service you are reading about right now:

  • Provide a hassle-free website design and hosting that can serve as a reliable and future-proof platform for indie author careers.
  • Keep the service at an affordable price, so we can help any author who wants to have that base marketing need satisfied.
  • Add new features that will make a significant positive impact on the authors' lives.

This requires us to streamline our process to deliver this service as much as possible, so we can focus on a great design and developing new visitor-facing features that will make a real impact. It's also important that any features that we make publicly available are easy to use for a majority of authors so we don't have to provide case-by-case support to enable authors to use their websites (as then the price would need to be much higher with no real benefit to authors). More importantly, right now there is virtually no time commitment required on the author's end to create the landing page. We want to make sure that our CMS is so easy to use that you spend as little time working on your website as possible. As we refine our idea of what an ideal CMS looks like, we make changes to it to meet that goal.

The landing page is something that ideally doesn't change very often. This is why our development efforts to date focused on what visitors see and improving our process to deliver this service quickly (without impacting the quality or the effort and thought put into the custom design) have taken precedence over adding CMS to all landing pages.

We expect to be able to add content management to any landing page that requires it in early 2022 (by summer, at the very latest). This ability will come "bundled" with a custom branded link shortening service (in addition to universal book service included for all sites right now) and an ability to easily create new landing pages yourself at any time with no added per-page fees.

We don't have any pricing details for this add-on just yet. However, when it's ready, we intend to add content management to all landing pages ordered before the end of 2021 for a reasonable one-time to cover the work required to set it up, with no increase in hosting fee, at least for the initial hosting period included in your chosen package.

Providing content management requires significantly more resources (server computing power and manual setup) so we expect to add a yearly hosting fee (but a reasonable one) for new sites with the content management enabled when it's open to everyone. However, whenever possible we like to thank authors who take action and support us without waiting for such features, so we expect a special deal to be available for anyone who orders a site before this feature is publicly released.

If you need content management for your landing page right now, please note in your order form why it's an essential feature for you (or simply email us before placing an order) and we will let you know what we can do for you.

If you would like to be invited to beta test our CMS when it reaches that stage (and get early access and discounted pricing for this add-on in the future), please make sure to note it in your order form and we will contact you when that becomes a possibility.

I would love to have the branded universal book service but I don't need a landing page. What's the price?

Currently, we do not provide universal book service at a discount even if you don't need a landing page. If you are interested, let us know and we will be in touch if that becomes a possibility in the future. Make sure to let us know whether you would also need a link shortener service in addition to the universal book link service.

I have another question.

If you have read through all relevant answers above and have not found an answer to your question, or need some clarification, email us at questions@AuthorLandingPages.com.

If you want to share any feedback with us about our offer, your web design needs, or have any problem related to the book publishing that you believe smart technical folks might be able to solve, send it to feedback@AuthorLandingPages.com. While we read and consider all feedback received to this email, we might not be able to reply to everything or the response might not be timely.

If you didn't receive a response to your question within a week, please re-send your email or, if you can't wait any longer, send it to authors@FormattingExperts.com.