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Posts Tagged ‘amazon’

KDP Select

August 14, 2012 1 comment

Amazon’s KDP Select program is one that helped propel several of my books (not just the ones that were free) onto Category lists and Popularity lists… i.e. it helped me sell a lot of books.

The idea is that you put your book for free for a couple of days, promote it like crazy to various websites, blogs, on Twitter and on Facebook.  The free downloads propel the book up the Best Seller charts vastly increasing visibility and resulting in sales afterward.

I have an ebook available if you are interested in this type of promotion.  It will walk you through step-by-step exactly what I did that helped my ebook go to #1 on the Free list and then hit #86 on the Paid list.

$4.99

At Amazon!

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Amazon Lists

August 9, 2012 2 comments

I must make mention of one of the best things you can do to sell ebooks and books, which will also prove the most frustrating — Amazon’s lists.

There are several lists to be aware of (and use if you can) on Amazon.

Best Seller’s lists — there is an overall best seller’s list (which you can see how your book or ebook is doing by looking at the “Rank” in the Product Details portion of your book’s buy page).  Sales + sales history will make a book move up or down on this list.  So if you have a spike in sales over a short period, this rank will climb.  But it can be very volatile, and unless you make it onto the Top 100, the only place you can see your book’s rank is on your book’s page.

Category Best Seller’s lists — These are smaller best seller’s lists derived from the categories you put your book in when you upload it to KDP.  So for example, my book went to #86 on the Best Seller’s list (yes, the big one), but at that time it was #1 on four category lists:

Now, one of the uplists (I think it was Religious Fiction) was the fourth list it was #1 on.

Basically when you hit a rank on a category list, your book is ON ever list listed.  So you can back track up the lists to see where it ranks on each list (each uplist gets progressively bigger).

When you make it onto a Best Seller’s Category list, you are a best seller.  Take a screen cap and save it for proof!

Popularity Lists

When people go to Amazon with no set book in mind, they will often search.  The popularity lists can be a very powerful way to get books to people who might otherwise never see your books.  The trick is how to get on them.

Before May 2012, this was relatively easy in that the popularity lists were devised pretty much the same way the Best Seller’s lists were (sales + sales history).  However, in May, Amazon changed the system so now they’ve added the revenue brought in by a title to the ranking order.  So if I sold 11 ebooks at 99 cents and you sold 1 at $11.99, my book would have outranked yours on the popularity lists.  However, now your one sale (because of the higher revenue) would now outrank my 11 sales.

So to get onto the popularity lists, you have to sell a lot of books at a higher price.  Needless to say, that’s a lot tougher to do.

To see this type of list click here.

Off-lists

These are like the popularity lists in how the ranks are determined.  There are many of these on Amazon such as Hot Releases and Top-Rated in each Category. These are fun to watch and can be good landing pages if your book ranks highly.

Tagged lists

Finally, there are lists based on the tags on your book.  Simply click on the tag on your book page (toward the bottom–you should have your books tagged!) and see where your book ranks.  These can be great landing pages especially for those just starting out.

For an example of that kind of list, click here.

Lists will really help you sell.  It’s getting on them that’s the tough part, and staying on them is even tougher.  But being on a list will definitely increase sales so it’s something to understand and work toward.

Landing Page: Author Central

March 13, 2012 2 comments

We’ve talked about landing pages–those places where you will send potential customers and readers to see more about you.  One of these pages should be Amazon’s Author Central page–especially if you have more than one book or one book in more than one form (Kindle and Paperback).

I have to admit that I haven’t taken as much of an advantage of this page as I could have.  I also have to admit that I had to ask someone how to even access it if I’m not sending people directly to it.  (You click on the Author’s Name next to the Book Title on the Amazon book page.)

 

But I do think you should at least have yours set up so that if a customer wants to know more about you, it won’t be a blank, boring page.

To see what a good Author Central page looks like, we’re going to peruse my friend Penny Zeller’s page.  Go to:  http://www.amazon.com/Penny-Zeller/e/B002IGNA2O/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

This page gives you quite a bit of info about Penny.  It gives you blog updates for her blog, additional pictures of her, as well as listing all of her available books.

One thing I know from experience that you have to be careful with is that Amazon doesn’t always automatically add your new books to the stream.  So when you put new editions up or add books, make sure they are listed here as well.

Penny’s page also has a good biography and a discussion with an interview at the bottom.

It might not be the #1 landing page you want to send people to, but it’s important to get yours set up so potential fans will be in awe rather than bored! 🙂

Book Landing Pages

March 8, 2012 1 comment

If you’re an author, after your website, your most important Landing Page will probably be your Amazon book page (or your Smashwords/B&N, etc.).  I’m going to talk here about Amazon because they have a dynamic page that you can do many things with.  If you have other book landing pages, you can take what you learn here and use it there as well.

So, let’s talk about the elements of the Amazon Book Page first. I’m going to use my current one for Cowboy to show you, but all of these elements are on your page as well.

First, at the top you have the pic of the book (get a great cover design! That’s a major hook!). The Title of the Book, and then two elements you have some control over.

Reviews and Liked.

We will talk about getting reviews later, but for now, please understand that they are critical to your ability to sell on this page.  The more positive reviews you have (4 or 5 stars; 3 is neutral; and 2 and 1 are negative), the better your chance of selling another book when someone reaches this page.

Like  The little orange button is an easy way to convince new readers that others think your book is great.  To get “Likes” on this page, couple your tag request (we’ll talk about that in a minute) with a request to “Like” your page.  At bare minimum, like your own page so this button is orange and not gray.

Then they give info about the book and other books people have bought who bought yours.  You cannot control any of this, so don’t worry about it.

Under that you get to “Editorial Reviews” and this you can control and should think through carefully.  Many people put only a description here, but you can put other things too, like reviews or even an excerpt.  Remember, if someone’s read down this far, give them something they can’t say no to!

The next section is “Product Details” and although you can’t control this, it is wise to take a look at the number next to “Amazon Best Sellers Rank.”  Unless you write for a line or a large publisher, this number will probably be in the thousands or hundreds of thousands.  Mine on this screen cap is #31,051 in the Paid Kindle Store.

If your book is on any category best seller lists, it will look like this:

The categories in blue underneath tell you what spot your book is on on that last.  If your book is listed like this, congratulations! You are now a Best Selling Author (even if it’s only listed this way for  a few hours!).  Take a screen cap (CNTRL + PRNT SCRN  and then paste it into a Word doc to save) and celebrate!

Underneath the ranking, you will find this:

More About the Author leads to your Amazon Author Central Page.

What Other Items is a section you can’t control as is “Looking for…”

Under THAT is the Tag section.  It looks like this:

This is a section you can and should control.  First, you need to set tags or keywords for your book.  What is the book about?  What genres is it in?  What keywords might someone type in to find this book?

You get 15 of them, so choose wisely.

Once you’ve set your tags, you want people to come and “Agree with these tags.”  Other writers are great for this… especially large groups of other writers.  Network to tag everyone’s books.  Why?  Because if you do and people start buying your books, then you get listed on tagged-category pages that look like this:

On this page, Cowboy is #2 Christian Inspirational tagged.  When you get to this point, this becomes a great landing page for your book in tweets and other promos!

Stay tuned, next time we’ll talk about your Amazon Author Page.