Blog :: White Magic Studios

Book covers that make readers ‘Swipe Right’: Why you should never compromise on your book’s cover?

How does it matter? 

You might think. After all, the real deal is inside the cover. 

Well, it’s funny how the success or failure of something, in most cases in life, comes down to one or two seemingly small, insignificant to the result, factors.

Book covers are like those factors to your book’s success.

How so?

Because let’s again take George R R Martin’s for an example.

The quality of his story would neither get diminished nor enhanced by the cover of his book. Yet, one day, someone who had never heard of him, picked up his book because they liked the cover. And the world changed.

How strange is life.

But we gotta play by its rules.

Book cover matters. 

People often say, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.”

It’s a common phrase for a reason – it’s because subconsciously, we all do it.

We DO judge books by their covers.

That’s just how our brain works.

Instant Recognition and Instant Attention

The sole purpose of a book cover is – to sell your book

80% of people are initially attracted to a book because of its cover.

60% of people decide whether or not to buy a book based on the visual design of the cover.

I daresay that your book cover is the most important component of your book. I know this

statement might seem to offend the mighty authors out there, but yes, it is true.

A Book Never Picked Up From The Shelf Is Never Read

Your book cover is the most important component of the sales of your book.

The S-word creative minds despise.

Afterall, you cannot judge creativity and art, whether it’s on a canvas or a paper.

But an artist needs a gallery, needs an audience and deserves appreciation.

Some might say, it’s not important, but that’s not the reality. 

In the real world, when you write a book, when you spend months and years on that one manuscript, you want it to reach everyone. Getting your sales up is the ultimate goal of an author.

To make this possible, here are some tips.

  • Start with an idea and find the big picture

Think of the theme of your book, not the story.

The cover should give the viewer an idea of the genre of the book and the mood of the book, rather than the specifics of the story.

Find the central theme of your book and try to make that graphical in the most elegant way possible

  • Become the reader and research

The best way is to think from the reader’s perspective. Go online and research the following…

What do the covers look like?

What do you like about the covers?

What do you NOT like about the covers?

Which covers draw you in and make you want to click?

Make a note of everything. What did you understand about the genre of the book, what colours were used, what typography, observe everything about the cover. 

  • Keep it simple

Once you have an idea of what people like, try to sketch your cover. Try to keep it as simple and uncluttered as possible. Stick to one theme, don’t try to convey multiple ideas at once.

  • Focus on Typography and Graphics

Fonts sizes and styles are more important than we think. 

Here is what makes a good book cover:

  • Modern, clean fonts
  • Only 1-2 fonts
  • Striking, contrasting colors
  • 1-2 images or graphics

And here is what ruins a cover:

  • Tiny text
  • Fonts all the same size
  • Unappealing colorToo many pictures and graphics
  • Think about the subtitle 

Look at this cover from George Orwell’s Animal Farm. 

The impact that the subtitle leaves is so strong..

It intrigues the reader and gives an idea of the overall theme of the book.

  • Choice of colors

You can set the entire mood of your book just by picking the right color of the cover.

Colors express emotions and ideas.

This recent cover by Paul Bartlett of the famous book, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Image via

Notice how the color emerald green has been used over different images that relate to the narrative. The color symbolises the “emerald city” and makes the cover super intriguing.

Now, What About Your Book Cover?

Now that you have the perfect recipe for an amazing cover, you know how to look for the right cover designer for your book.

If you like, we can help you.

Designers at White Magic Studios are smart, creative, adaptive and empathetic to a book cover’s role for its sales, audience and author.

Bring your project to us, let’s talk the best ideas that will work perfectly for you.