Eight Big Reasons to Learn to Love Amazon

Eight Big Reasons to Learn to Love Amazon 1024 576 Reader Views

By Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItSeries of books for writers

Remember the little greeting card girl who looked like Pippi Longstockings who often put her hands on her hips and stamped her little foot, glowered out of the card at her audience and said “Get Over It!” That’s a little like I feel when I hear an author complain about Amazon. Not that I don’t understand their complaints, even sometimes agree with them. What worries me as that sometimes these authors resort to boycotting Amazon which leads to their being forced to sell their books out of their garages for lack of sales… or worse. Whatever you’ve heard about Amazon may be true but we authors still need to just “Get over it.” For the good of our books. If you are one of those authors, here’s why Amazon is good for your book and by extension, good for your peace of mind: 

1. Amazon sells far and away more books than any other online bookstore. And more books than all traditional bookstores in the US combined.

2. Amazon provides easily accessed associate sites that let you sell your books overseas even if you haven’t sold foreign rights to your book. (Translations are good but not necessarily needed. Lots of people in Germany are fluent in English.)

3. Amazon provides a search engine arguably second only to Google’s—especially if you view this statistic from the standpoint of an author or publisher. Your prospective reader can find you by typing your name, title, or important key words like your genre into the search window.

4. Amazon Reviewers are credible. Send queries for reviews to a few who have reviewed books in your genre.

5. An author profile helps you help your readers to find all your books. And Amazon notifies those who follow you there of your new releases—all free. Go to AuthorCentral.com and explore how you can get one and add all your books and your knock-out biography to it, too.

6. Amazon offers all kinds of ways to promote your book on your buy page including:

  • The buy page happens to be where your readers get to buy your book, often with one click. You can spruce it up adding a video, your credentials and credible reviews to it other than the ones it will collect from your readers magically (though you will collect more if you suggest it to your contact list of readers or newsletter subscribers.) It includes:
  • Ways for the author to help their bestseller ratings by juggling their book’s category and subcategories. (To make the most of these, the should shout out bestselling ratings when they achieve them—perhaps on Twitter.)
  • A new feature is available on your Kindle buy page. It is called “Amazon Plus.” Either the author of a book or its publisher may add five enticing quotations from your book and illustrate each with an arresting image of your choice for each. Find the A+ entries my publisher (Modern History Press) added for the Kindle version of the third edition of my The Frugal Editor or any of the other books in my HowToDoItFrugally series and use it to get ideas for your own book(s). (It works equally well for books of fiction.)
  • The “What other customers buy after they’ve reviewed this item…” feature may feel uncomfortably competitive, but it connects your book to other top sellers on Amazon as well as others’ books to yours.

7. Amazon’s Kindle Select marketing program is free if you can see your way to committing your book as an Amazon for ninety days. After that period is up, you can publish at Smashwords or anywhere else you want to and you can make marketing hay with the Select program when your book is introduced.

8. If you publish new editions, Amazon offers a widget (gadget) for your backlist book’s buy page that directs readers to your new editions. See how one leads you from the second edition of my The Frugal Editor to the new third edition at my buy page. (Find it a little below the title of the book at the top of the page.

Tip: Do watch this important page for changes. Amazon adds features to it and it also taketh away. (It’s also the place that lists your book sales ratings. If you use that feature well and your book becomes a bestseller (or highly rated in its genre!) those ratings can become highly convincing marketing material for your book.


About the Guest Blogger

Carolyn Howard-Johnson is a frequent contributor to this #ReaderViews blog. Her The Frugal Editor is now in its third edition from Modern History Press. It is the second multi award-winning book in her multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers. Find it on Amazon in paper, hard cover, or as an e-book at the new Amazon page especially for series . It has been fully updated including a chapter on how backmatter can be extended to help readers and nudge book sales.
If you liked this post, you will find more on marketing books in the third edition of her The Frugal Book Promoterthe flagship book in the series.

Please help me celebrate the release of the 3rd edition of the Winningest Book in Carolyn Howard-Johnson’s “HowToDoItFrugally” Series of books,  “The Frugal Editor”!  

“…The Frugal Editor is part reference guide, part do-it-yourself editing manual, part masterclass on the writing and publishing industry…and all with Carolyn’s signature humor and encouraging energy! She is a master at simplifying overwhelming tasks into relevant, can-do information…” -Dallas Woodburn, best-selling author and book coach. Cover by Doug West, Headshot by Uriah Carr 

Amazon Series Page: https://tinyurl.com/FrugalSeries
Blog: http://SharingwithWriters.blogspot.com
Submit to my #SharingwithWriters blog: tinyurl.com/SubmittoMySWWBlog

Connect with Carolyn Howard Johnson!

Web site: http://HowToDoItFrugally.com
Blog: http://SharingwithWriters.blogspot.com
Twitter: @FrugalBookPromo
Facebook: http://facebook.com/carolynhowardjohnson
Amazon Profile: http://bit.ly/CarolynsAmznProfile
E-mail: hojonews@aol.com

  • Carolyn Howard-Johnson

    Marla, it is nice to know you came to this on your own. Few do. That negative circle of gossip and old information (to say nothing of misinformation) is just too prevalent on the web. Thank you for letting lovely Reader Views peeps, readers and me know. And, ahhhh yes! Download sample! Have to add that to my next list! (-:
    Very best,
    Carolyn Howard-Johnson

  • Marla Miller

    I come from the traditional publishing model and when Amazon books became a thing, the default for traditionally minded writers was to choose to support indie bookstores instead. In theory I do but Amazon books is too accommodating to be ignored. I love the ‘download sample’ option and can’t beat their prices. So yes, I’m an AmazonBooks-ophile as well.
    Marla Miller

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