If your book is available anywhere it’s Amazon, the largest book seller in the world. The Amazon book listing features for authors and publishers is unmatched in the marketplace, offering features such as direct publishing, optimise book’s listings via KDP, Createspace and Author Central.
Given the fact that it’s a crucial marketplace for independent authors and publishers, it also means your book is amongst a huge amount of other books competing for the attention of buyers.
So how do you increase your chances of standing out from the crowd?
That’s what we’ll cover here, with actionable strategies you can implement right away for increasing your book’s visibility and exposure, in turn increasing sales and downloads.
Because if your book can’t be seen, it can’t be purchased.
Amazon book listing optimisation strategies
1. Amazon book description
The first step is making sure your Amazon book page has a solid description about your book enticing potential buyers. The book description section can be found directly below your book’s cover and pricing box.
- Your book description shouldn’t be an essay
- It shouldn’t reveal everything about the book
- It should be punchy, about two paragraphs in length. People skim read these descriptions for the most part
- Add clear testimonials or endorsements first, at the top. This acts as social proof, because what others say about your book carries more weight than anything the author can say
- If your book has garnered any bestseller status, be sure to add this here at the top as well
It’s important to understand that your description more akin to “marketing sales copy” not a school brief on the book. If you write a draft of your blurb, get an objective party who has at least a basic understanding of marketing. This is about crafting a sales pitch to capture and persuade the potential buyer. There’s no place for vanity here.
2. Amazon’s Author Central
This is an absolute must for every author. Amazon’s Author Central is where buyers and readers can discover more about you without leaving Amazon. Your author information can be found further down the page after the product details and reviews section.
Here you can update your bio, profile photos, videos and import posts from your blog. You can even make updates to your book description and reviews yourself without needing to contact Amazon’s inquiries desk. For more detailed ‘how-to’ tips check out the article Amazon Author Central the complete guide.
3. Amazon book page ‘tags’
This is often forgotten by independent authors and publishers. Tags are key words or terms which customers have associated with books (or any product) which help them and other online buyers discover related products to that key word or term. The more tags you have for any one term, the more Amazon’s search algorithm (like Google) will favour your book when that term is used by the shopper during a book or product search.
For example: Hunger Games has tags such as: suzanne collins, science fiction, adventure, young adult.
You’ll find the tags section below the reviews. To add tags to your book, click on the ‘Tag this Product‘ link under the ‘Tags Customers Associate with This Product‘ heading. This will open a new window where you can add tags. Then simply save after you’re done. Something to note; is to place your most important key words or phrases first, as Amazon will look at those with a higher priority.
4. Choose your categories
Choosing the right categories means you’ll more likely appear to your target readers. It’s also important to not be broad with your selection. If you have a book on accounting, don’t just place it in the ‘business‘ category, but put it in a sub-category of ‘accounting’ or ‘book keeping‘ in that bigger category.
This way those specifically looking for books on accounting will more likely see you and this is where the buyers expect to see a book like that. Make it easy for people.
Don’t make the mistake of ‘set and forget’
What most authors do, is publish their book, simply cut and paste their back book blurb or a description they make up on the spot, and leave it at that. They don’t return and update their Amazon book listing with new reviews, a revised and improved description, additional tags and their Author Central Profile. This is one of the fastest ways to have your book take residence as a tumbleweed in Amazon’s book wasteland.
You’ve got to be mindful and return to update your Amazon book page. This won’t be a problem if you’re building your platform, seeking reviews and promotion.
Focus your book buying traffic
Once you’ve done the above and your Amazon book listing page is optimised, it’s time to start working on your book’s ranking. This is an article or five in itself, but one thing you can do starting right now, is to simply direct all your buyers and readers from your website, Facebook or offline events to Amazon.
Target and focus all your book buying traffic to Amazon and the sales will be fuel to get your book ranking higher and higher in its category lists.
Armed and ready with Amazon