Free book cover templates are the sure-shot way to reduce your book launch budget. Your book’s cover design is undoubtedly one of its most important selling points. Authors often have to work with tight budgets. It can be challenging to decide where to spend your money and where you should tighten your belt. Book Covers Design is one of the most expensive parts of production. Book Covers can be pre-made for as low as $100.
Custom, full-spread artwork can go up to $4000 per book, depending on the artist. DIY! It’s easy to make a great cover with a little bit of market research and more skill. I will show you the top five free programs and help you choose the right one for you.
In this article we will cover the following:
Table of Contents
- 1 Top 5 free book cover template software
- 2 How to choose the right software for the book cover
- 3 What should a book cover include?
- 4 Steps To Design a Book Cover
- 5 How to choose a font for a book cover?
Top 5 free book cover template software
Canva’s book cover maker makes designing book covers amazingly simple – even for non-designers. You’ve done the hard work and created an amazing book. Make sure it sells out by creating an awesome cover design!
Canva’s free book cover maker is ridiculously easy to use – even for the novice or not-so-tech-savvy writer. Our book cover maker allows you to choose from hundreds of layouts, making it easier than ever to create a memorable cover.
Create a free book cover template using Canva
2. Adobe Spark
If you’re self-publishing a book, you’ll know that writing it is only part of the process. You also need to market it, and that requires a descriptive and eye-catching book cover. You may need the expertise of a designer or artist, too. And they were not cheap. But with Adobe Spark, you can create slick, professional book covers from the comfort of your own home.
Create a free book cover template using Abode Spark
3. Poster My Wall
Design an eye-catching book cover for your next best seller in minutes. Personalize, print, and publish online. Customize 4,520+ Kindle/Book Cover Design Templates using postermywall
Create a free book cover template using Postermywall
Professional and creative Book Covers don’t have to cost a thing. Choose from hundreds of Book Cover Templates and customize it to suit your book! Creating a book cover is easy even if you don’t have any design experience. And when you want to update text or images, just select what you want to edit and have it changed instantly. We offer templates for physical books, Wattpad and Kindle.
Create a free book cover template using Desygner
5. DIY Book Cover
The Easiest Way To Design a Professional Book Cover, Without Hiring an Expensive Designer. My FREE book design templates, tools, and online cover creator have helped 57,236+ authors publish beautiful books while avoiding critical design mistakes that sabotage sales. Now it’s YOUR turn to create a cover you love.
Create a free book cover template using DIY Book Covers
This software is great for quickly whipping up covers if you don’t have any complex photo-editing requirements. Krita is our favorite program. However, it’s essential that you find the right program for you and your artistic skills.
How to choose the right software for the book cover
Your skill level and requirements will determine the best program for your needs. This is where comp titles come into play. To create a memorable graphic cover for your humorous memoir, you don’t have to be proficient in photo manipulation. A drag-and-drop creator won’t work well for a broody novel. Photo collage, templates, text effects, layers, and photo manipulation are the five main features to be aware of when selecting a program.
Using images to overlay or combine without changing the overall look of the source images. Graphic covers where the title text takes center stage are great examples. Authors often use these images to promote their books.
Templates are great for those with a weak background in graphic design. With a bit of tweaking and some custom art, you can create a beautiful, clean cover. Many of these apps and browsers offer pre-made design layouts.
Changing fill and adding effects such as glow, shadows, and 3D. I don’t mean simple font and color changes, as each program below does. Text effects are different, and only the more complicated programs can offer text editing. Often, these effects are done through layer effects. A lot of urban fantasy books make the title look lit up or magical. This is possible by using text effects.
Multiple layers of a project allow for dynamic editing. Smoke effects can be added to photos and art without having to alter them permanently. All these programs layer the entire image, but not all have dynamic layers. Combining layers with text effects and photo manipulation is the best way to use them.
You can change the opacity of the images, the saturation or color of the art, or erase selected sections. This is especially true if you are using stock images instead of custom-made art. You can make a free stock photo look exactly like your character. However, this feature is not available in all programs.
What should a book cover include?
Be sure to include:
- The name of the author
- Title and subtitle
- Background images and graphics
- Blurbs from reviews if they fit into your design
Don’t forget a spine that stands out if you’re creating a cover for a print book. That’s where eye-catching typography can really shine.
Steps To Design a Book Cover
1. Find Book Cover Inspiration
First, you should search for inspiration for book covers. This applies whether you are designing the cover or hiring a designer. Cover designers often request these inspirations.
Use Pinterest to find ideas.
Pinterest also has many ideas to help you create beautiful covers.
Explore boards and pins about book covers and any other topic that inspires you. Keep the ones you like. You can find excellent book covers boards to browse and see what you want. Pinterest can help you design your book’s cover, as well as its content, message, and genre.
Keep Genre Expectations in Mind
You must adhere to the genre guidelines when designing a book cover. These genre standards are essential because they help sell books.
Look up bestsellers in your field and note the covers.
- Colour schemes
- Common elements
Your cover should stand out. It should be eye-catching, well-made, and fit your genre.
Fiction or nonfiction?
Fiction speaks to the heart, while nonfiction speaks to your brain. A reader should quickly be able to tell whether a book contains fiction or nonfiction.
Fiction book covers are great if they convey an emotion that is compatible with the story and connect with the right type of reader.
Nonfiction book covers that are funny and interesting sell well.
For inspiration on how to create your book cover, visit Amazon’s online marketplace. Take a look at your genre from both the inside and out. This is just for inspiration.
Look for book covers that stand out and appeal to you as you browse Amazon. Click on the book cover you like and save it as a file to your desktop.
Even though you might not require a book cover for a particular topic or genre, it is a good idea to look at book covers that inspire you.
2. Choose Your Book Design Software or Designer
The best book design software must be able to meet your needs.
A good designer is an excellent choice if you don’t have any experience in designing. Designers who are skilled in book covers can be expensive. However, your book cover design will be your most important marketing tool. It’s well worth it. Many of us don’t have the budget to hire a professional designer.
How do you create your book cover free of cost?
Canva and Book Brush are free tools that you can use to create your book cover. Your book cover is the most crucial marketing tool you have. All publishing experts recommend that you spend money on your book covers.
How to Create a Book Cover by You
- Freedom is the key to your freedom
- Cost efficiency
How to Create Book Covers for Yourself
- Sales are lower
- Coverage of lower quality
- Design that is amateurish and scares readers
This applies even if you have no professional design experience. If you have a strong background in design, these cons won’t apply to you.
Hire a designer
These are the top services to hire a book designer:
- Ebook Launch – Professional book covers at an affordable price. This is the designer I prefer for all my readers.
- Damonza – They are a professional cover design group with hundreds of books under them.
- Jeff Brown Graphics Jeff Brown is an illustrator and designer who specializes in book covers. His work includes 500+ book covers. Jeff has designed covers for bestselling authors like Steven Erikson, Michael Anderle and Ken Lozito.
- 99 Designs – You can start a contest through Vistaprint by telling them your requirements and getting lots of ideas in return. You get to choose your favourite design at the end of each week.
- Author Packages – This service provides custom ebook and print covers as well as formatting and Proofreading service. These packages are for self-publishing authors as well as indie authors. They are affordable and have a wide range of pricing options.
How much can it cost to hire book cover designers?
Between $500 and $2000. Some services, such as Ebook Launch and Damonza, offer extensive services at the cost of $500. Others, like Jeff Brown, charge $2000 for a more personalized, hands-on approach.
What is the average annual salary for a professional book cover designer?
The average book cover designer earns between $40,000-$50,000 per year. Book cover designers do their work because they enjoy it and not for fame or riches.
The Pros and Cons of Hiring a Designer
- Coverage for professionals
- More effective marketing leads to higher sales
- You can master any design program or the art of designing.
The Cons of Hiring A Designer
- High costs
- Loss of creative control, but not really
3. Choose your Cover Dimensions
Before designing your book cover, make sure you have chosen the correct dimensions for each market. Next, you will need to decide on the width and height ratio to ensure appropriate design.
Every market has its own requirements and guidelines for book cover dimensions. Amazon is flexible with book cover sizes. Amazon will only require that at least one side be at least 1000px in length. This allows you to change the cover width/ratio. This is evident when you search Amazon.
Amazon recommends that the ratio between your book cover height and width be 1.6:1. How does this compare to the other ratio customers see when they scroll through book search results?
Make sure your book is in the right proportions. This is what the shopper will see. If you are creating a textbook or something that needs to look thicker than it is, you may want to use a ratio of 1.3:1. You can enhance perception by using the ratio
4. Find Image for Book Cover
Contrary to popular belief, simplicity is better than complicated. It can be difficult but essential to find images for your book covers. Your cover should not be too busy or contain too many colors. When people see your cover, it should elicit an emotion: suspense or lust, intrigue or innocence.
A bloody hatchet on the stump, for example, could set the tone in a book about wilderness survival/slasher. You can find images for your cover on both free and paid websites. All images used on the book cover must be yours. You must declare that you have the copyright page permission.
You have 2 options for book cover designs:
Get free book cover images.
These images are free to you, and you can alter them for your book cover as long as the artist credit is given:
- Free Images
- Wikimedia Commons
Check the attribution guidelines if you are using an image as your cover art. These guidelines will tell you where credit should be given (e.g. the title page or back cover).
Browse Paid Book Cover Photos
These are just a few sites that charge per photo. You can also use unlimited photos with a paid membership.
5. Pick Your Colors
You should choose 2-3 cover colors to reflect the message and mood you are trying to convey. Because these colors are harmonious, many Blockbuster movie posters use a blue/orange or black/white/red color palette.
6. Choose Your Font
While some authors focus only on the cover image, the title layout and typography should also be considered. It is important to choose a font for your cover. This will help you convey a clear message, evoke emotion, and reinforce the genre.
Your title should be treated as a logo. You should choose a font that people easily remember.
7. Check out your book cover design.
Martin Lake, who I mentioned above, doubled his book sales on multiple occasions by changing his cover design, is still in business. Not only is he an author, but many others have used book cover design testing to create better products.
Ask your family, friends, and co-workers on social media what cover they prefer among various designs. However, I recommend you also ask your local librarian or bookshop clerk. They are more knowledgeable about what is selling. You can also ask on the Internet.
To split test your covers, I recommend PickFu. This will allow you to see which people prefer. You can get honest feedback from potential buyers (people you don’t know), and you can make a more informed decision about the cover. PickFu’s A/B Testing is how Tim Grahl selected the best cover design for his uber-popular book marketing guide, Your First 1000 Copies.
8. Make a mockup
A professional mockup is essential for marketing purposes. A mockup of your book will make it feel more natural to you and other people.
To create professional-looking ads for your book, turn your 2D flat image into a 3D book mockup.
Some cover designers include a 3D cover with the package they offer (or you can add it for a super-low price).
You can also download templates for free or hire someone to make a mockup for your book for $5 or $8. I’m explaining this in my guide to creating mockups.
How to choose a font for a book cover?
You may have spent hours searching for the perfect eye-catching image for your cover, but the readability of your title is just as important. Many cover designs end up using a clean, white font over images. Typography tends to suggest a specific genre, so choose wisely there as well.
Whether you’re an accomplished cover designer looking to upgrade your publishing software or a budding author dipping a toe into book design, there’s a program to suit every level and budget. We tried to distribute some knowledge on cover designs and related topics, hoping it helps create lovely covers.
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