By Indie Authors for Indie Authors.

Category: Marketing Tips (Page 1 of 8)

How to Maximize Ebook Success: Distribution


Once your ebook is formatted and ready for publication, the next crucial step is distribution. In this section, we will provide authors with a detailed guide on how to effectively distribute their ebooks to reach their target audience and maximize success. By following these steps, authors can increase visibility, generate sales, and build a loyal reader base.

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How To Rank Your Book On The First Page Of Amazon Search

amazon book ranking tips


by Aleksandar Ljubinkovic


Writing a book is no small feat. If you’re writing fiction, you spend weeks and months crafting your story arc, fleshing out the motivations of characters, and trying to create a piece of art that will leave readers satisfied, yet also wanting so much more.

Nonfiction isn’t any easier. You have something you’re passionate about, and you’re trying to take everything you know and put it in writing. It can feel like trying to capture the wind.

But even when your book is done, your work isn’t. Unless you’re J.D. Salinger, you want people to actually read what you’ve created. You want to connect with a passionate audience who is going to fall in love with your work of art. You need to get your book in front of people.

And that’s where the rub happens.

Finding your audience isn’t always easy, especially if you’re a newer author without much of a platform.

You could hire a PR firm to help you spread the word, but if you’re like most indie authors, your budget isn’t very big…if you even have a budget.

Thankfully, there are other solutions.

In fact, there is one particularly powerful tool that most indie authors don’t even think about: the Amazon search engine.

If you think about it, Amazon is actually one, giant search engine. There are hundreds of thousands of products listed, and the way most people find them is through typing into the search bar.

If you can get your book to show up on the first page of specific Amazon searches, you suddenly have access to a massive audience.

But how do you do that? It’s not about hacks or somehow “tricking” the Amazon algorithm. It’s about knowing what the Amazon search algorithm looks for and then giving it to them.

That’s what you’re about to learn.


[clickToTweet tweet=”If you can get your book to show up on the first page of specific #Amazon searches, you suddenly have access to a massive audience. Learn how! #writerslife #indieauthors” quote=”If you can get your book to show up on the first page of specific Amazon searches, you suddenly have access to a massive audience. Learn how!”]

Step #1: Choose Your Keywords Carefully

Like Google, Amazon heavily relies on keywords to determine what your book is about and where it should show up in searches. When you publish on Amazon, there are numerous places to include specific keywords, and you’re going to take advantage of every one of them.

But you can’t just include any keywords.

In order to show up high in searches, you need to identify keywords that are related to your book AND that are regularly searched.

How do you do that?

There are several relatively easy ways.

The first is to go into the Kindle Store in incognito mode and type a partial search related to your book.

You need to use incognito mode in the Chrome browser so that Amazon doesn’t use any of your prior searches to make suggestions. If you do it in regular mode, Amazon will populate the search bar based on your prior activity.

For example, if your book is about productivity, you could simply type, “Productivity…” and look at the results populating the search bar.

Once you type the partial search in, Amazon will offer suggestions to finish the search. All these suggestions represent potential keywords for your book. Write them down for future reference.

But here’s the thing. You still don’t know how many people are searching for any of these terms. You need to go one step further and determine which terms are getting a significant volume of searches.

That’s where Google Keyword Planner comes in. This free tool allows you to see how often people search particular terms on Google and how difficult it is to rank high in those searches.

Yes, Google and Amazon are totally different search engines. That being said, if something is getting lots of searches on Google, you can be sure it’s also getting a lot on Amazon.

When you type “productivity tips” into Keyword Planner, you’re given a large list of related keywords, how many searches per month the keyword gets, and the competition for that keyword.

Low competition means that there aren’t millions of people trying to rank for that same keyword.

This information is key. You now have keywords that are related to your book, get some amount of searches, and aren’t ridiculously hard to rank for in searches.


[clickToTweet tweet=”Use keywords with high traffic and low competition to drive your #book to #Amazon bestseller status. #writingtips ” quote=”Use keywords with high traffic and low competition to drive your book to Amazon bestseller status. “]


Step #2: Optimize Your Book Listing With Keywords

Now you’re going to take the keywords that you’ve identified from Amazon and Google and skillfully weave those into your book listing. Note that I’ve said, “Skillfully.” You’re not going to stuff keywords into every nook and cranny of your listing. You’re going to do it naturally, working with what Amazon already gives you.

There are numerous places you can do this.


The Designated Keyword Section

On the Amazon KDP dashboard, you can put seven keywords to describe your book. This is where you should put your most important keywords – the ones that describe your book and have the most search volume with the least competition.

You might think that you should include your name as one of the keywords, but that’s probably not necessary since your name will also be in the author section. Rather, use this space to focus on the words that people who don’t know you will be searching for.


Your Title and Subtitle

This is where you need to get a little creative, especially if your book is fiction. If your book is nonfiction, you should include at least one of your primary keywords directly in your title, and then a few more in your subtitle.

If your book is fiction, you’ll need to get creative about how to do this. You’ll obviously want to include the actual title of your book, but then you’ll want to add in keyword descriptors after the title and subtitle.

Here’s how one author made it work.

Yes, this can make the listing feel a bit clunky, but it can also drive a significant amount of search traffic to your book. Ultimately, you’ll have to decide how many keywords you want to stick in your title and subtitle.

You want to strike a balance between the bad practice of keyword stuffing, where you cram as many keywords as possible into the title, and not using any keywords at all.


Your Description

You should also skillfully weave your keywords into the description of your book. For example, if your book is in the suspense genre, you could say, “Following in the footsteps of suspense masters like Dean Koontz, Stephen King, and Michael Crichton…” This increases the chances of you showing up in searches related to those three authors.

If your book on productivity is also geared specifically for moms, you could write, “If you want to be a more productive mom, this book is for you.”

The point is to include keywords naturally in your description that also do a good job of selling the book.


[clickToTweet tweet=”Don’t stuff your #book listing with keywords. Include keywords naturally in your description that do a good job of selling the book. Check out more tips to sell your #amazon book! #indieauthors ” quote=”Don’t stuff your book listing with keywords. Include keywords naturally in your description that do a good job of selling the book.”]


Step #3: Make Sure Your Book Looks Great

The final step is an obvious one, but it needs to be stated. If your book doesn’t look good, people won’t click on it or buy it. If no one clicks on your book when they see it in a search, Amazon will conclude that it’s irrelevant to them and drop it lower in the search rankings. You want to have as high a click-through-rate  (CTR) as possible.

This means you should have a fantastic, professional looking cover. Don’t settle for something you slapped together in five minutes on your iPhone. Either hire a professional to do it or use a tool like Canva to create a beautiful book cover.

Your description should include the right keywords AND be so compelling that people actually want to buy the book. Don’t be sloppy or hasty with your description. Craft it with sales in mind. Would someone reading the description feel like they can’t wait to buy your book and dive in?

You also want to get as many verified reviews as you can on your book. Verified reviews means that someone actually purchased your book and then took the time to write a review.

Finally, your book should be well proofed, meaning there’s few or no grammatical or spelling errors. Amazon cares about this because they want to ensure that buyers get a good product, not a book riddled with poor grammar. If you want your book to show up high in searches, make sure you take the time to proof your book.



I realize that this may all seem pretty technical. After all, you’re an author and you focus on writing, not search optimization. I certainly understand that.

However, if you’re willing to spend just a little bit of time doing some keyword research and optimizing your listing, you can significantly increase the odds of your book showing up in a search.

Whether for good or bad, this is what it means to be an indie author. You don’t have your own marketing team and must be willing to put in the time and effort to market yourself.

The amount of time you spend doing that can be the difference when it comes to sales.



Find more writing and publishing tips at Nothing Any Good.



About the Author: This post was written by Skubana. Skubana is an all in one solution that unifies operations for online merchants after the checkout. Skubana automates everything from order management, order fulfillment, inventory management and purchase order management.


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Authors, You Need An Amazon Author Page

Setting up your Amazon Author Page


Authors, You Need An Amazon Author Page


by Catherine Townsend-Lyon


Authors, do you have your Amazon author page set up? If not, why not? It is a vital part of your marketing platform. Let me show you how to get it all set up correctly and make you shine on Amazon.

Writing and reading good books is a passion of mine. Once my book Addicted to Dimes was published May 2013 on Amazon, many writing doors opened for me. One of these doors has been writing and book promoting, including recovery and book promotion articles for many publications. This lead to co-writing with several high-profile people and former NFL Pros as well.

When I receive emails from author clients looking for a book marketing plan, I always do my research on the author to see what they currently have open in the way of social media accounts. I have helped many excellent authors open their social media accounts, but to my surprise, about 80% of authors do not have an Amazon Author page! WOW!

Now, to me, this is a head-scratcher.


[clickToTweet tweet=”80% of authors do not have an Amazon Author page. Create your Amazon page now! It’s simple. Learn how. #writetips #writerslife #indieauthors” quote=”80% of authors do not have an Amazon Author page. Create your Amazon page now! It’s simple. Learn how.”]


WHY? Because it is free to do, easy to set it up, and you can even link your website or blog feed to your page and advertise free any author event too! You get a fabulous bio area, add a photo of yourself. So why wouldn’t you utilize these fantastic book marketing tools to go along with all your books listed for sale on Amazon?

Maybe it is because you’re not sure where to go, or how to set up your page up? Well, I am going to help you with that.


Here is how to set up your Amazon Author Page


All you do is go to Amazon Author Central here.

Just create a new account, answer some questions, and you’re ready to set up a beautiful author page.

To set up your account and reap all the benefits associated with marketing your book through Author Central, follow these steps (from Amazon):

1. Go to and click Join Now.

2. Enter your e-mail address and password and click “sign in” using our secure server.

3. If you have an account, sign in with the e-mail address and password you use on that account.

4. If you do not have an existing account, select No, I am a new customer. You will be prompted to enter the necessary information.

5. Read the Author Central’s Terms and Conditions, and then click Agree to accept them.

6. Enter the name your books which are written under. A list of possible book matches appears. Select any one of your books. If your book is not on the list, you can search for it by title or ISBN. The book you select must be available for purchase on the website. Choosing the book creates the account. When you receive the confirmation e-mail we send, confirm your e-mail address and identity.


Optimizing Your Author Page


Then you can complete the rest with using the Twitter tools to link your feed, add your social media links so readers can visit you. You even create your own URL link for your author page. If you look to the left of the front page, there is a whole host of topics and marketing tools available for you to use.

It is a fact that authors who have an Amazon Author Profile page alongside their books find that readers are more prone to purchase one of their books. Readers prefer to learn more about the author when considering whether to buy a book. Readers love to learn, connect, and engage with the authors they enjoy reading. It is also a fact that readers will be more prone to come back and place a review of your book when they finish reading, which helps your Amazon ranking.


[clickToTweet tweet=”Readers love to learn, connect, and engage with the authors they enjoy reading. Create an Amazon Author Page so they can connect with you. #writetip #writerslife #amwriting” quote=”Readers love to learn, connect, and engage with the authors they enjoy reading. Create an Amazon Author Page so they can connect with you. #writetip”]


Because your new Amazon Author Page makes you shine! It shows you as a professional writer and author. So please authors, go over to Amazon Author Central and set up your author page today. And while you are there, check out all the helpful marketing tools Amazon must aid you in writing and promoting all your books.



Find more writing and publishing tips at Nothing Any Good.



About the AuthorWriter Catherine Townsend-Lyon is the best-selling author of her non-fiction memoir titled Addicted to Dimes and a new compilation book with other writers titled Ten The Hard Way. She has been professionally promoting books and consulting with authors for “Kodel Empire Publishing Group” for two years, and now independently for many authors as owner of “Lyon Media, Book Promotions, & Literary Consulting.” You can learn more about her by visiting her book promoting website Cat Lyon’s Reading and Writing Den. “Books, Authors, Social Media, and Writing are my Passions!”

4 Tips for Marketing Your Book and Increasing Sales

4 Tips for Book Marketing


Self publishing can be a scary endeavor, but just as frightening sometimes is the marketing that Indie Authors have to do after they publish. I want to share some of my own marketing tips with you to help you on your journey to sell more books.

I have published five books and have gone through what you are all going through. I’ve sat at my damn computer day after day trying to put into words the sensational story swirling around in my head. When I finally had my story down on paper—and more or less coherent—I had to start with the editing. Then, to add insult to injury, once the book was published, I had to demean myself to market it. Well, maybe demean is not the right word, but I do so hate to beg. I only mention my time in the trenches so you’ll know that I’m a veteran and have the wounds to prove it.

I’m here today to relate the little of what I’ve learned over the last five years concerning marketing. And don’t fool yourself, you gotta do marketing. Even Stephen King has to market his own books. He puts $200,000.00 of his own money into advertising each of his books. He can afford that kind of budget. But the rest of us will have to work a little harder.

Most of what I’m about to convey will be old hat to some of you. And to you brand-new writers looking for a signpost or two to help you find your way, I sincerely hope what I’m about to convey helps.


1) Newsletters

Using outfits with mailing lists is a good way to go. For $30.00 or $40.00, you’ll sell some books. When I use those resources, I’ll sell a couple of hundred or so. But you can go down that route only sparingly. They let you promote a book only once every ninety days. But after the first blast, you’ve probably made most of the sales you’re gonna make anyway. A few of the best are Ereader News Today, Free Kindle Books & Tips, Book Gorilla, and Choosey Bookworm. There are others and you’ll find ’em if you look for ’em.

One last thing, you’ll want to space out using these guys because you’ll want to know who will give you the most bang for the buck. And I’m sure some of the names on their mailing lists overlap.


2) Ask for Reviews

There is no other way to say this, but ya gotta go out and beg for reviews. Reviews spur sales. Ya gotta sit at your computer at least ten hours a day—or as many hours a day as you can afford—sending out the same query letter.

The first bit of advice that I read about when my first book came out was to get the list of Amazon’s top 100 reviewers and send them an email asking for a review of your book. I did that, but I didn’t stop at one hundred. I sent out almost 400 emails. I was into the top 600 by the time I stopped.

I did get two of the top 100 to review my book and both of them were kind enough to give it five stars. Subsequently, they’ve bought my other books and gave them good reviews. And that’s good. But … for my next two books, I sent out over a hundred requests to the Amazon top reviewers, and I didn’t get one single reply. Not every reviewer has their email address on their page. So, to send out 100 query letters, you have to go through about 300 to 400 profiles. It’s a lotta work.


3) Guest Posts

Next, the book bloggers: This is where the honey is. The people that read their blogs are readers and buyers of books. These are the people you want to know about your book. You can get lists of book bloggers by googling “book bloggers.” Who would have thought?

BUT (and there is always a but), book bloggers are inundated with requests for reviews. Some get 500 requests a week. At first, I went that route asking for reviews and I got a few. But the return on my investment (my time) was slim. I’ll explain.

Once you have the lists, you have to go through them and get the link to the blogger’s page. Then you have to go to their “Policy” page to see if they are even interested in your genre. You’ll be extremely lucky if you hit 50%. Then you have to go to their “About” page and get their name…if it’s there. If it is, personalize the salutation of your “begging” email and send out your request for a review. Then you go to the next name on the list and do the searching all over again.

Whew! Makes me tired just remembering going through all that.

I did that for ten hours a day, seven days a week. I must have sent out 2,000 begging letters for each of my books. But I finally got smart. Instead of asking for a review, I offered to do a guest post or an interview. It’s a win-win. The blogger gets content and you get to promote your book.

To date, I’ve done over 600 guest posts and I’ve sold a fair number of books because of those posts.


4) One Last Thing

This has nothing to do with marketing, but it is important. When you start getting reviews, the best policy is not to respond to them. However, if you want to thank someone for a good review, I reckon that’s all right. BUT … NEVER, EVER RESPOND TO A NEGATIVE REVIEW. Do so at your own risk.



Find more writing and publishing tips at Nothing Any Good.




Andrew Joyce AuthorAbout the Author:

Andrew Joyce left high school at seventeen to hitchhike throughout the US, Canada, and Mexico. He wouldn’t return from his journey until decades later when he decided to become a writer. Joyce has written four books, including his latest, a two-volume collection of one hundred and forty short stories comprised of his hitching adventures called Bedtime Stories for Grown-Ups. He now lives aboard a boat in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with his dog, Danny, where he is busy working on his next book, tentatively entitled, Mick Reilly.
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