10+ Proven eBook Ideas With Examples (& How to Pick a Topic)

by Celeste Smucker


Are you looking for awesome ebook ideas? You’ve come to the right place.

Whether you’re a blogger, content marketer or business owner, you know that a well-written ebook is a powerful way to:

So why is your ebook still in your head and not on Amazon Kindle? Or on your site as a powerful lead magnet? 

If your reason is, ”I can’t find the right topic,” no worries. 

Easy, proven ebook ideas are everywhere. 

You just need to know where to look. 

Let’s dive in.

How to Choose an eBook Topic

A winning ebook topic is one you love (or at least like and are familiar with) that also excites your audience. After all, If they’re not excited, why bother?

However difficult it may be, avoid your audience’s favorite topic if it’s not one you know well and enjoy writing about. 

Otherwise, you’re looking at huge amounts of research (and a lot of unnecessary frustration) to get up to speed. 

Instead, ask your followers about their greatest concerns or areas where they feel their knowledge is lacking. What do they worry about? What keeps them up at night?

Then pick the audience favorite you enjoy and know the most about. 


Here’s a breakdown of how:

  • Email your audience with a list of possible ebook ideas and ask which ones they would love to download right now. Also, ask them for suggestions about other topics or concerns they may have. Or send them a survey. Google forms works well and it’s free.
  • Join relevant Facebook, Reddit, or Linkedin groups and note what questions people have or what topics upset or excite them. Offer some ideas and see what kind of response (or not) you get.
  • Transform existing content into an ebook. Revisit your blog posts that got lots of comments or shares. Do they have potential for expansion? Did you write related posts that could be converted into chapters for your ebook?

You can also:

  • Look on Amazon Kindle for another goldmine of possible ebook topics. What ebooks are hot in your niche? Pay special attention to what they like and dislike, especially when they mention problems they feel were not acknowledged or solved in other ebooks. 
  • Visit Udemy and other online course platforms. What popular course topics in your niche would make a great ebook? 
  • Get a free trial on Buzzsumo and research what topics are being shared (and where) on social media.

Once you have ideas about what to write, go spy (legally, of course) on your competitors:

  • Google topics of interest to see who appears on page one. What are these posts about? Can you improve on them? 
  • Drill down further with a tool like Ahrefs to learn which keywords help your competitors rank. Your keyword research can also produce a great idea for chapter titles as well as powerful words to use throughout your ebook.

So, you have your topic. Next, is style…

11 Tried & Tested eBook Ideas (+ Examples for Inspiration)

Tried & Tested eBook Ideas

Now that you’ve narrowed your search to a handful of hot topics, it’s time to choose the style of ebook to write. 

Here are 11 of the very finest ebook ideas. 

Pick the one that best fits your content. 

1. The How-to Book 

What do you do well that others would want to learn more about? 

Maybe it’s woodworking, comedy writing, or a lucrative new skill like UX copywriting. Or perhaps you are an expert at growing medicinal herbs or building an email list.

Whatever it is, chances are good that you’ll find others who want to upgrade their skills in that area. But remember, do your research to be confident.

Start by listing the steps needed to arrive at a finished product or higher skill level. Then make each step a chapter in your ebook,

How-to ebooks make great lead magnets, like this popular cheatsheet from SmartBlogger called Headline Hacks, which is all about how to write the world’s best headlines. 

Or publish your ebook on Amazon and watch it become a best-seller like James Clear’s Atomic Habits, a revered personal development title about how to become more successful by transforming your habits.

2. The Ultimate Guide

An ultimate guide is a powerful way to build authority. It’s a smart choice if you know enough about your topic to tell your audience everything they really need to know, leaving out nothing. 

Do a good job and your credibility will soar. 

But remember, it needs to be above and beyond your competitor’s content. 

Piece of cake. Right? 

Start by reading this blog post about, coincidentally, how to write a blog post

As you read, substitute the word “headline” for “chapter”, and you’ll have the essential know-how to get started on your own ultimate guide.

 3. The “Fluff-Free” Guide

Do you dazzle with simple, streamlined, get-right-to-the-point writing? 

If so, a “Fluff-Free” Guide may be for you. 

Fluff-Free Guides solve one particular problem or highlight a core issue. And they do so using simple, easy-to-read prose. Check out this classic example from Seth Godin (a master of fluff-free) called Purple Cow, New Edition: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable.

Its single focus is how to make your business remarkable rather than invisible. First published in 2003, it has been newly updated and is only 172 pages.

Fluff-Free Guides can be entertaining and fun, but still get right to the point. And (especially) if they’re a lead magnet, they can leave an impact on the reader, leaving them hungry for more of your lean, nutritious content.

4. The Contrarian Viewpoint

Want to get readers’ attention? Write an ebook with a contrarian point of view.

Contrarian goes counter to conventional wisdom. You stand out because you’re saying something different — in fact, often something that may be opposite to what everyone else is saying.

David Dremen’s recently revised Contrarian Investment Strategies: The Psychological Edge, is a good example. Read it for new insight on how to be a successful investor.

Contrarian viewpoints get attention because of the curiosity factor. Some readers will agree with you, others may get angry, but either way, you have their attention and the clicks and shares follow.

The key is to find ideas. What contrarian topic can you write about that genuinely expresses your views? Here are some ideas to help you get started.

5. The Original Case Study

The Original Case Study

A case study tells a story about how you or someone else encountered a real world problem and solved it. Its purpose is to inspire the reader.

Case studies can be about a business success, like this post about blogger Steven Aitchison’s success in finding thousands of fans on Facebook without spending any money. 

Or they can be about an outstanding personal achievement. SmartBlogger founder Jon Morrow’s inspiring story about creating an amazing life, though he can only move his face, is a great example.

A case study ebook can be one story, or it can showcase several similar stories (one per chapter) that inspire readers to have more business success or more fulfilled lives.

6. The Personal Struggle

Have you experienced an unusual or difficult struggle in life? Or did you overcome serious problems or know someone who has? 

The struggle could be personal like recovering from a life-threatening disease, or having a near-death experience. Or it could be about how you achieved financial or business success after growing up impoverished. 

Whatever the experience, the key to success with this ebook is relatability. People must seem themselves in you or the person you’re writing about. They need to believe that if you overcame these struggles, they can too. 

An amazing example of overcoming a serious illness is Anita Moorjani’s Dying to Be Me: My Journey from Cancer, to Near Death, to True Healing

7. The Thought Leadership Book

Are you a thought leader, someone who is a recognized authority in some topic, and who also influences others? 

If you are, why not write an ebook about how you got there and what motivated you. If you aren’t, write about thought leaders who are willing to share what they’ve learned. 

They don’t need to be someone with a national reputation. How about a local REALTOR® who promotes her business online and helps motivate other agents. Or your friend who made a killing selling crafts on Etsy and now helps others get rich too.

Maybe you know someone like Chris Dreyer (whose book is entitled Niching Up: The Narrower the Market, the Bigger the Prize), who took a few courses on digital marketing and developed a market strategy that made him wealthy along with becoming a successful thought leader.

Whoever they are, and wherever you find them, share the insights from thought leaders so others can learn from them and go on to achieve similar success..

8. The Beginners Book

Beginners books offer useful info aimed at folks who want to learn a new skill. They may be brand new to a field or want to upgrade their skills, like a writer wanting to find more freelance writing jobs.

In addition to offering info or instructions, a successful beginner book should motivate the reader to put their new knowledge to work. 

Once they read your ebook, some may succeed on their own. Others may turn to you for guidance, mentoring, or more in-depth training.

9. The Expert Roundup

Want to build authority, connect with experts and get lots of traffic? The Expert Roundup ebook is the way to go.

First, round up a panel of experts willing to share their expertise about a particular topic. Then interview them and make each one a chapter in your ebook. 

For advice on how to choose and interview the experts, check out this blog post that tells you step-by-step how to go about it.

Do a great job, and the experts will share your ebook with their audience giving you lots of exposure. 

Of course, some of the shine the experts enjoy will rub off on you by association. This, in turn, will further boost your authority.

This ebook may take longer to write than some of the others, but the payoff is enormous.

10. The Humorous Take

The Humorous Take

Humor is a powerful way to connect with your audience, whether in writing or in speaking. 

When you make people laugh, they are more likely to have a positive impression of you and more likely to remember your message. And, of course, they will also be more likely to follow you. 

If humor is something you excel at, be sure to use it in your ebook, whatever the topic. And since you’re good at it, you could even write an ebook about how to write humorously. 

11. The “Tiny Wisdoms” Book

A “Tiny Wisdoms” book is something people treasure. They may even print it out and read one page every day. 

Or they may share today’s thought with their friends and colleagues on social media.

Your ebook could be motivational, inspirational or even humorous

It could include stories, anecdotes, affirmations, quotes or easy-to-follow lessons. 

Choose the topic and content that best suits your audience, developing it around a central theme. 

For example, check out this book of jokes, quotes and anecdotes for teachers.

Choose Your Favorite Ebook Idea and Start Writing

Choose Your Favorite Ebook Idea and Start Writing

Go ahead. Start writing.

Now you know how to find the perfect ebook topic. 

And our 11 tried and tested ebook ideas will help you connect powerfully with your followers on social media, supercharge your email marketing and increase your passive income.

Imagine your excitement when you see your best seller on Amazon.

Or how happy you’ll be with the big uptick in downloads of your latest ebook and lead magnet. 

Just pick a topic, choose one of our powerful ebook ideas, create an outline and go for it.

You won’t believe how easy it is and how much your income will grow.

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Celeste Smucker

Celeste Smucker is a freelance writer and Smart Blogger Certified Content Marketer and Copy Editor. A long time meditator and dedicated student of Ayurveda, she delights in enthusiastically researching and sharing insights that inspire women to enjoy healthy, stress-free lives. Visit her freelance writer profile for more info.


A "cheat sheet" to making 2-5K per month as a writer, even if you're a total beginner.
Photo of author

Written by Celeste Smucker

Celeste Smucker is a freelance writer and Smart Blogger Certified Content Marketer and Copy Editor. A long time meditator and dedicated student of Ayurveda, she delights in enthusiastically researching and sharing insights that inspire women to enjoy healthy, stress-free lives. Visit her freelance writer profile for more info.

1 thought on “10+ Proven eBook Ideas With Examples (& How to Pick a Topic)”

  1. All are excellent ideas. Fabulous post here.

    #6 is highly resonant because I never considered the idea until a few of my readers brought the idea to me for writing an eBook on how I went from security guard to traveling blogger.

    I focused so heavily on sharing blogging tips for aspiring bloggers that I largely forgot about sharing aspects of my old life as a pier guard, well before I chose to travel and blog. Two readers clearly suggested to chronicle the journey for readers to learn, to study and to find inspiration from someone who edged through life struggles toward a freeing dream.

    I self-published an eBook about how to go from scared security guard to smiling offer, sold it through Gumroad and figured that the relatability factor you keenly mentioned makes the impossible, seem possible, then probable, then, a certainty, when you learn from folks who’ve found a way out, or, a better way to live.

    People generally assume that established bloggers are lucky, organically talented, and have always had it easy. In reality, this crowd tends to face, express and forgive the deepest fears, to be the most helpful, and to do all the stuff society chooses to look past, to live their dreams and to inspire others to do the same. A personal struggle eBook lays it all out for you to see….the rest of the story.



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