Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Why It Pays To Be Popular

Whether you've enrolled your book(s) in KDP Select or not, the conversations around changes to the popularity lists affect you too. Why? Because Amazon's recommendation engine is based on rankings, both on the bestseller lists and the popularity lists.

Most of you are familiar with the alsobots (the list of books that customers who bought your book also bought and that are similar to your book in genre, price and ranking). The alsobots are what you probably thought of first when the reco engine was mentioned. And they're important, of course. But how about the emails that Amazon sends out periodically based on your browsing habits? Those along the lines of:

Customers who have purchased [specific genre] books on Kindle might be interested in this month's best sellers or related books Recommended for You.      

If you have clicked on the "see more" link at the end of the 6 or 7 books displayed in the mail, you might have thought you were being taken to the bestseller list. Nope. You're shown the popularity list. And if you aren't a bestselling author, the popularity list is likely your best chance of getting seen by folk who click through. The recent algorithm changes affect books in and out of Select equally when it comes to recommendations, visibility and discoverability.

And while it's become harder to hit the popularity lists, once on them you'll likely hang out on them longer -- for about 30 days assuming you can move at least a few copies of your book during the time you're in the Top 100 of your genre. After 30 days, though, if you haven't done anything to step up your game, you'll drop off the cliff...


And in non-Amazon (OmniLit) news, this makes me happy:

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