Publishing   Ranked  

Which travel book cover will appeal to my readers?

When you shop for a book, what do you look at first? Truth is, we all tend to judge a book by its cover. A book cover can often be the deciding factor in whether or not someone buys your book. By testing your book title and cover before publication, you’ll know how to choose a book cover that appeals to the audience you want to reach.

How to test your book cover design

Book cover testing can help you improve every element of your cover.

If you have a few book title ideas, test them with your target audience to see what resonates. You can compare up to 8 options in a Ranked poll. Use the results to narrow down and revise your options. Then, put your two best titles in a Head-To-Head poll

You can use a similar approach to get feedback on your overall book cover design. Run PickFu polls to test different images, fonts, graphics, color schemes, and layouts of your book cover. 

One tip when testing book covers: test only one element at a time. In other words, if you’re experimenting with different cover images, keep the book title, font, and other elements the same. You’ll get the most relevant feedback that way.

About this book cover poll

While it’s valuable to see what readers think of your book cover, a competitive analysis of your book and others in your genre can yield deeper insights into what makes a good book cover. 

This Ranked poll is a good example. The poll asks 50 nonfiction readers to rank the covers of three Italian phrasebooks, one of which (Option C) is by acclaimed travel writer Rick Steves. 

Steves’ name is eye-catching. His name has cachet; readers trust him. But in the end, respondents liked the “Audio” aspect of Option A. They also preferred the map illustration in Option A over the other designs.

Every PickFu poll includes written comments from each respondent. Read through them to understand what your readers look for in a book cover and how you can make yours stand out in the competitive publishing industry.

Which cover do you prefer for an Italian Phrase Book?

50 people answered this 3 option Ranked poll in 4 hours and 33 minutes.

Selected responses:
A is definitely my favorite -- it promises help with speaking common phrases confidently, plus I'm a sucker for fun maps!B is my next favorite because it also suggests that it would make communication easy.C is my third choice; although Rick Steves is a respected name in travel, this cover is a bit "basic" (and if glancing quickly, I'd probably see the name Rick Steves and assume it was a travel guide).
I love Rick Steves! So yeah, option C is definitely #1. I watch his show on PBS and he's so knowledgeable, I would definitely trust one of his books. After that I went with option B because it boasts a 100 more phrases than option A. Option A has cute artwork, but I'll take more knowledge over the artwork any day, not that the artwork for option B is bad, but I do like option A's artwork a bit more.
I chose option B first because I like the large Colosseum illustration artwork shown on the front of this book cover the most. I chose option A second because the Colosseum is much smaller in this map illustration shown on this option A book cover image. I chose option C last because I do not like the realistic photograph very much in comparison.

Previous example

Which honey bottle design do shoppers like better?
Competitive analysis Product packaging testing E-commerce Head-To-Head

Next example

Which rug design would shoppers purchase?
Product validation Competitive analysis E-commerce Ranked