simplify cover art

Try publishing a “product or service positioning statement” on the cover with minimum decoration. The user wants to know immediately what the point is of your ebook. “What’s in it for me?” “Why should I care?”

There must be instant recognition, simplicity, and clarity of why to read or explore. Most book covers have too high of information density – aka clutter. Or in design language, “Emphasizing everything means emphasizing nothing.” These bad habits slow page download time and visitor comprehension.

The more focused the site the easier to optimize. General purpose, generic, “authority” websites do NOT fill the needs of information seekers. Smaller fast sites are the solution. Distributed information prevents information overload. Don’t present one bloated centralized site with 1,000 pages –rather 100 small sites that answer specific problems. It’s time to break up big sites into separate URLs based on market need. This makes information easier to find. Severe self-imposed limitations are needed to avoid visitor “boredom factor”, eliminate poor usability, and improve information findability.

1. Adhere to a one-benefit-per-cover rule.

2. Readability: The six-by-six rule states no more than six elements per line and no more than six lines per panel. The average person’s reading rate is about 250 words per minute. Therefore, covers that will only be seen for a few seconds should include no more than six items.

3. Lists: No numbering of bulleted lines. It throws people. No asterisks. They are associated with footnotes or ”fine print”.

4. Avoid placing copy over images. It usually ruins the photo and the type simultaneously. Position copy in a separate border or block near the image.

5. The field or cone of vision for signage covers a 60-degree angle. Consistency in the height of signs in a system reduces the viewer’s need to search for information.

6. Readability: Keep the fonts simple and use basic colors for lettering (black and white are best).

7. Legibility: Make type 1 inch high for every 3 feet back. To read copy 12 feet away, the letters should be about 4 inches tall.

8. The average height of a viewer’s eye level, measured from the ground when standing, is about 5 feet, 6 inches. When sitting, it’s about 4 feet, 6 inches.


1. Make the best use of color to attract attention. But keep it real simple. No more than three main colors.

2. Use one large graphic image. Not many small ones.

3. Use lighting effects.

4. Place organic cutouts Like plant leaves or round shapes.

People san book covers with limited attention. The viewer has to absorb info fast.


A change in recent years in marketing strategies is what some call anti-marketing. Sites who’s goal is to sell —perform better when the design is “low fidelity.”

Information Overload
More and more people are becoming uninspired from traditional “over-marketing” techniques. What is found in traditional marketing often is information overload. There is too much sales pressure and choice. This leads to confusion and irritation. People are yearning more for simplicity and authenticity. Most of the world has no design training, and don’t recgnize good design.

Cover design strips a site of its “ornaments” and put a higher priority on functionality with a minimalistic attitude. Its success is due to the changing behavior of viewers in general. People are becoming more and more inclined for simplicity, they want their information as quickly and efficiently as possible. Oftentimes adding flair (i.e. elaborate backgrounds, fancy images, etc.) can deter readers from absorbing information because it can easily be a distraction. By focusing efforts on functionality, you maximize getting your information through to the readers.

This does not mean LoFi covers aren’t “designed.” They are. But they’re not over designed. They’re well structured, readable and fast-loading. High-gloss, pixel-perfect, grid-aligned page designs using the latest in technology don’t necessarily sell. Without a good product idea, all that work is just fluff.

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