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Internship @ Amazon

Kindle Direct Publishing

UX/UI Design and UX Research

As a UX designer, I was responsible for:

  • Delivering a pre-login proof of concept that inspires senior management to make an update.
  • Conducting research to inform why we are making the decision to redesign the landing page.
  • Evaluating the success of the redesign through research.

Internship @ Amazon

Kindle Direct Publishing

UX/UI Design and UX Research
Kindle Direct Publishing is's e-book publishing platform associated with the Kindle Reader.

Originally called Digital Text Platform, the platform allows authors and publishers to publish their books to the Amazon Kindle Store digitally, and in print format on Amazon Marketplace.

Internship @ Amazon

Kindle Direct Publishing

UX/UI Design and UX Research
During the 2022 May Kindle Direct Publishing Summit, anecdotal feedback was given that self-publishing is overwhelming for new authors. One top author in 2019 said learning how to self-publish was more complicated than getting a Ph.D. in Physics. The Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) website seems to be missing a significant opportunity to drive customer acquisitions and provide better experiences for new authors.


UX Designer

UX Researcher


May-August 2022


Interaction Design

UX Research




The Problem

A redesign of the Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) landing pages is needed to help new print and digital authors better understand benefits, processes, tools, and resources prior to logging.

Our vision for this project is to use the Amazon Kindle’s Gutenberg design language to create a visually beautiful landing page experience that is flexible and informative. We need to fix the outdated look, the mobile optimization, the information displayed, and the development flexibility. Currently, Kindle Direct Publishing has a help center, publishing resources, publishing tools, a community forum, and a pre-login page. 

User flow of a new author visiting the current KDP pre-login page

As an author...

  • I want to understand what I need to have ready to start publishing so I can publish my book quickly once my book is complete.
  • I want access to the tools and information I need to publish my book so I can be successful on KDP.

As a marketing manager...

  • I want to link campaigns to KDP.comso I can drive acquisitions of aspiring and experienced authors.
  • I want to use a Content Management System to add, edit, and remove content so they are not dependent on the development team.

As a design manager....

  • I want designs to be scalable (ie. templates, modules, components, patterns) so landing pages are consistent and meet usability and accessibility best practices.
  • I want designs to utilize the KDP brand standards shown in the playbook and brand utilizing the visual playbook.
I turned to blogs, stakeholders, and secondary research for more context and direction.

This was the start of my UX process and strategy.

First Look

The Current KDP Landing Page

At first glance, the pain points are apparent. There are outdated designs, irrelevant information, and non-mobile-optimized pages. It is important that I research other information and talk to other people to gain more info.

Figure 1: Outdated pre-login page


Web Insights

A few questions that bloggers and prospective authors brought up on different forums were:

  • How can you trust Amazon for your product?

  • Is Amazon the right choice for your demographic?

One thing that stood out to me was when an author/blogger said:

The main factor influencing it is whether you feel okay trusting Amazon 100% with “your babies.”

This research gave me a better idea of the author's sentiment when visiting KDP. We needed to make trust a priority for new authors

I also went out to talk to marketing and design stakeholders. Most of them mentioned that:

The new page must be beautiful and adjustable. This will differentiate us from the old KDP.

The marketing team heavily emphasized that the pre-login page needed a scalable and updatable page. The pre-login page is a significant opportunity to drive SEO through mobile-optimized pages.

With this in mind, I knew the page needed to drive marketing apart from looking beautiful and modern. This became a guide for the hierarchy and content of many of the page modules.


Publishing Competitors

Lastly, I turned to competitors to see what they were doing well and what KDP was lacking. During my analysis, one noteworthy observation was the number of clickable options, potentially overwhelming users. Additionally, I identified a valuable tool in the form of the royalty calculator, which could greatly benefit authors by offering insights into their potential earnings with KDP.

To enhance KDP's user experience, it's essential to emphasize key features such as Bookshelf, Reports, Community, and Marketing, ensuring that users fully understand the platform's capabilities. Providing visual representations of KDP's advantages and disadvantages could be highly effective in conveying information. Addressing the need for transparent pricing would further contribute to improving KDP's overall appeal to both existing and potential users.

With all this in mind...
  • How might we create a more efficient and reputable pre-login page?

  • How might we visually set up authors for success?

  • How might we create a level of trust with our authors?


Meet the Hobbyist Author

Katie is an author who is motivated by her interest in romance novels. After 3 years on-again/off-again writing, she is ready to upload her book but has no idea how to. Her main goal is to make money and gain recognition.

Pain Points:

  • They do not trust the website upon first look.
  • They are met with too much inaccurate information
  • They do not get the most out of the information provided.

Meet the Aspirant Author

Robert is a social media personality who is an aspiring novelist. He really enjoys writing and thinks his memoir is worthy of publishing. His main goal is to gain recognition on social media.

Pain Points:

  • They do not trust the website upon first look.
  • They are met with too much inaccurate information
  • They do not get the most out of the information provided.
To get a better representation of what type of authors we are designing for, I looked at existing KDP author archetypes. The hobbyist and aspirant.

Design Criteria

Mobile optimized
Highlight marketing
Highlight Tools
Easily changeable modules
Concise and informative
Feature success stories
Highlight key features
Consistent branding
What does success look like?
  • Creating a pre-login experience that authors can trust.

  • Creating a comprehensive pre-login page that exhibits concise, relevant, and important information.

  • Using the best UX/UI practices.

  • Implementing visually beautiful and modern content.

As part of my final proof of concept, my design process included a site map, low-fidelity wireframes, mid-fidelity wireframes, and high-fidelity wireframes.

My main goal was to prepare web pages. They were designed with the intent of being transferable to mobile platforms and editable in the future for further iterations.

Site Map

Connecting Our Research

The final site map was broken down into a landing page and its three subpages: Earn, Publishing, and Writing Resources.


Low-Fidelity and Mid-Fidelity Wireframes

Scroll over and click through to see my low-fidelity and mid-fidelity wireframes.

Landing V1

Landing V2

Publish V1

Publish V2


While designing the low-fi wireframes, I created two versions for the About page and the Publish page to get a good idea of what I should be aiming towards. Feedback that I received was to break out of the old design explore different options and explore where to put different components.



Publish with us

Earn more


I received feedback on the mid-fidelities and there was a point was a point made to scale down the pages. I took this feedback by combining the Publishing and the Product Page together and distributing further information to the Landing Page. By doing so, I was able to condense more information and call attention to more important modules.
The final product

A detailed overview of my hi-fidelty proof of concept

The Landing Page

KDP Spotlight

The spotlight carousel was built to create more trust with the authors and to convey the message that they can succeed with us.

During a user interview, a notable piece of feedback stood out: the interviewee expressed a strong appreciation for the autonomy that KDP offered. The interviewee found the modules on the landing page to be reassuring. These modules triggered a sense of nostalgia, taking her back to her initial publishing journey, a time when KDP felt overwhelming. Opting for KDP was a deliberate choice because she could “be my own author AND publisher.”

Publish With Us

Publish With Us

The concept of this section is to present the initial stages upfront and then allow users to scroll through subsequent steps. This approach creates a progressive journey where users navigate through the process.

The decision to limit these stages to three and arrange them in a downward-scrolling manner aims to simplify the publishing experience for novice authors. Recognizing the large amount of information they'll encounter, I designed a streamlined process that eases their entry into the system. 

Kindle Create

I debated between download options, concise information, or links to other pages. I chose direct download links. In user interviews, both interviewees were unfamiliar with Kindle Create, downloadable software for formatting manuscripts.

To enhance user experience, we could show Kindle Create screens as an example, clarifying its functionality.

Earn More With KDP


Previously, this module was buried in the help section on the KDP page. I relocated it to the earnings page, given the importance of pre-login visibility for KDP earnings. This decision was influenced by stakeholder feedback and author interviews that stressed the need for clarity in the earnings process. It aligns with the personas I introduced, highlighting the significance of monetization, even for hobbyist authors. This underscores our commitment to prioritizing earnings and transparency.

How I Designed For Developers

While working on these pages, it's important to remember the developers who play a key role in making these pages a reality. As mentioned earlier, using KDP's Gutenberg Design Language and Amazon LEGO content creation systems was essential for making this work well on both mobile and web.


The LEGO system uses basic pre-made elements. I designed using column components.


Consistent headers and text to create a consistent hierarchy of information.


Easy design that involved no extra coding beyond the web design system.
User Testing
We conducted two 30-minute interviews with established KDP authors to uncover insights about their initial experiences with signing up for KDP.

These interviews were both positively received and provided constructive feedback. The authors offered valuable pointers and introduced additional considerations that could guide future iterations.

One particular thing we really wanted to gain insight into was the perspective of new authors. They value simplicity and ease, confident in managing their work independently. This insight will continue to shape our subsequent iterations, building upon the already solid foundation we have.

“There is no gatekeeper, you might have an amazing idea that you want to get to an audience. You don’t need anyone to give you approval. You don’t need anyone to decide for you, it’s just that easy. You can go through these few steps and your book can be live in 72 hours.”

    - Interviewee #2

Goals for the Future

Marketing and promotions

  • There were conflicting views on how promotions can be utilized. One author said they really liked having the information at first glance while the other didn’t care for it.
  • More user testing should be followed up to see if this should be pushed.

Publisher Tools

  • We should assess the necessity and importance of these tools, considering how publishers perceive their effectiveness in terms of attracting more customers and achieving success.

Statistics and scalibility

  • One interviewee told us that they would love to know more about author spotlight and maybe if we could expand on it. They gave a piece of feedback that maybe we should highlight how many books have been published with KDP so far. I think it would be great to have maybe a counter of how many books are published to date and how many authors are creating right now

Talk to more authors

  • I know we talked to established authors about their thoughts, but it would be amazing to get more insight into new authors who don’t know anything about KDP.

My Future Recommendations

  • Further author testing to justify new design decisions
  • Incorporate and build these designs in LEGO for mobile optimization
  • Figuring out if components can be mobile-optimized
  • Using feedback to reiterate and test new ideas (i.e. Author Spotlight)

I recommend that we also recognize the significance of mobile optimization, which is why we plan to leverage Amazon's web development system (LEGO) for building.


The Final Product Update

My time at KDP has been a valuable learning experience in the UX process, granting me substantial responsibility in areas such as scheduling, design, and study creation for testing purposes.

Through this journey, I've gained insights into the delicate balance between the design, research, and testing aspects of UX. I've discovered the importance of time management to ensure that studies and research progress concurrently and meet deadlines.

A year after my internship concluded, the KDP team has revamped its landing page. My proof of concept served as a starting point, and it's gratifying to see numerous elements and research reflected in the final product. I appreciate the team's confidence in me to contribute and publish a professional-level product, and I'm delighted to witness them utilizing my previous work to reimagine the brand.

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