Top Book Cover Design Mistakes You Should Avoid


You have written your book. Editing has been done. Everything has been proofread. Now it’s time to sell. The greatest selling point of your book is the book cover. Creativity in book cover design is paramount. Also, don’t make the following mistakes when doing your book cover design.

Including Excessive Elements

A good fantasy book cover designer should include too many elements on the book cover. Too many elements confuse the buyer. He/she will not know the most important elements. On sites like Amazon, books are shown in rows featuring tiny images. This means that you have limited space for your book. The best thing to do is to show one beautiful book element. It will highlight what’s contained in the book.

Do away with small elements. Focus on the main element of your book. Be brief with your message. Including too many elements can be overwhelming and confusing.

Ignoring Genre

There are several book genres. Each genre has its own rule regarding book cover design. For instance, a fiction book cover cannot be the same as a futuristic science fiction book cover. Thus, your book should have stylish similarities (i.e., with the genre). Not doing so will turn away readers.

Hire the right book cover designers to help you. They have the expertise to place your book in its correct genre. They have the tools to produce the best book cover that sells. Remember, a book cover makes a huge impression. Thus, don’t mess with it.

Wrong Fonts

Don’t include familiar fonts. Remember, if customers are used to something, they will ignore it. Thus, common fonts should be avoided. Embrace creativity and use a unique font. Make it bold. It should capture the attention of the reader. Also, the font should follow the rules of the genre.

For instance, if you are writing a fantasy book, a Serif font should be used to design the cover. Also, go for the medieval look when designing the cover for this genre.

Low-Quality Image

As stated before, the cover speaks volumes about your book. To make it stand out, use the best images. Use high-quality images. Poor quality images will not attract the eye of the reader.

Small images are not recommended because they reduce in quality, especially when stretched. Too large images are not also good. Choose a moderate image. Assess the quality of that image. Avoid blurred images.

Also, pay close attention when changing the dimensions of your images. Use the recommended cover dimensions. Ensure that the background is ok. Use the right techniques when cropping your images. Use a designing tool to create high-quality images.

Poor Readability

Nowadays, you can display your book in different sizes as well as formats. In most cases, these book covers will look smaller than their physical counterparts. That’s why you should make your cover readable when it shrinks down when put in a list. A good designer should shrink the cover down to a thumbnail-based size because it will be put on the retail book list.

Don’t design a book cover that gives readers hard time seeing the graphics and images. Make everything visible. Small text isn’t recommended. Go for bold text. Use the right fonts when creating your book cover.

Long Title

Make the title short, but sweet. According to experts, titles for nonfiction books should not exceed 5 words. For subtitles, stick to 3-7 words.

Consider using title hierarchy when identifying a tile and its subtitle. The title should not overwhelm imagery. The title should contain the most important keywords. This will improve your book’s discovery.

Text Close to The Cover’s Edge

Don’t keep the title text close to the book’s edge. According to experts, all title text should be kept within half inches on the sides. Allow white spaces. They offer breathing space for your words.

Color Chaos

When choosing colors, do it carefully. Ensure that your colors can stand the legibility test. Making your eBook an RGB color compliant is key.

Book Cover Spread

Self-publishing is common nowadays. In self-publishing, you are required to upload two files: the book cover and the content. The cover layout includes the front, back, as well as spine. These elements are known as the spread. You must build your spread based on the width of the spine.

Cover printing follows an explicit template. Each printer comes with his/her template. Common technical aspects contained in the template include spine width, bleeds, as well as crops. For those designing cover jackets, it’s necessary to obtain different templates that have provisions for jacket wrap widths.


The cover spread comes with the following elements:

Front Cover—The front cover contains the title, the name of the author, and the subtitle.

Spine—In the spine, you will get details such as the imprinted logo, the name of the author, and the book’s title.

Back Cover—On the book cover, expect to find details such as a book blurb (also known as a description) and a photo of the author. Also, the author’s bio is included on the back cover. Additionally, the barcode featuring an ISBN can be included on the back cover. However, you can include pricing but it is optional.

Optional—Information such as endorsement, the author’s website, the author’s website, as well as the name of the cover designer can be included. However, these details are optional.

Key Takeaway

Like content, book covers play a key role when it comes to the success of a book. Simple mistakes can turn away readers and reduce sales. Producing attractive book covers will ultimately drive sales.

The Bottom-Line

The book cover is an important element when it comes to attracting readers. Besides physical books, eBooks online also require the best book covers. Remember, there are countless options readers come across. To make them pick up your book, you need to get creative. That’s where the book cover comes in. To get it right with your book cover, avoid making the above mistakes. Good luck!

Faheem Haydar
Faheem Haydar
Faheem is the lead editor for The Tiger News. Faheem Haydar is a serial entrepreneur, investor, author, and digital marketing expert who has founded multiple successful businesses in the fields of digital marketing, software development, e-commerce, content marketing, and more.

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