As you can imagine, getting on page 1 of Amazon’s search results can be very important. Amazon is the world’s largest search engine and your ability to rank for specific keywords related to your book can attract new potential buyers and highly relevant organic traffic to your book page. But the competition can be quite intense for many of the keywords you desire, so it has become increasingly important for authors to adopt advanced sales tactics to get their books to the top pages of Amazon’s search results.
Remember, Amazon’s objective is always to make more money. So, keep this in mind when you follow my guidance on this. When a customer performs a keyword search, the Amazon search algorithm will consider a number of factors, the most important of which are:
- Sales Conversion
- Amazon Sales Ranking (optional, but it can help)
Now that you know this, I can imagine that you are asking yourself the following question: How can I use this to my advantage and get my book on page 1?
Well, by simply addressing each of these 3 most important factors. So let’s look at each of these in turn.
If the keyword you want to target is not in your book title, sub-title or book description, then it’s very unlikely to score high in Amazon’s search results. So if you book is on “mountain biking” you can understand why it’s not going to score high on “french cooking” or “historical romance”. It just simply isn’t relevant.
This is very important. If you have 10 people searching for a certain keyword, and the majority of them go on to buy your book, then Amazon will love your book and score you highly in its search results.
Amazon Sales Ranking
This is the rank Amazon gives your book based on recent sales. So if your book has not sold many books in the last few weeks, this will not be good for your SEO results.
So how can you get to the top of Amazon’s search results?
Well, quite simply, you, or a book promotion site you advertise on, will promote your book to a select audience of readers, checking how many of them are willing to buy your book. You, or your book promoter, will then send them an email with a link to your book containing your desired keyword.
The result is a surge of new readers will search for your desired keyword and buy your book. This will satisfy Amazon’s search criteria for relevancy, sales conversion, and Amazon Sales Ranking and within days and put you on page 1 of Amazon’s search results.
Too good to be true?
Well, let’s look at how I achieved it for my last book. My hope is that if I can do it, there is no reason why you cannot achieve it too.
So, here is a screenshot of my book on page 1 of Amazon’s search results. In my first campaign I decided to target “self publishing” and here you can see the results.
Wow – how amazing is that! My book is not only on page 1 but placed at #1 on Amazon’s search results. You have to admit, as an author you get a thrill at seeing this happen and I was more than delighted. Almost makes you want to repeat what the lady in the Deli said in the movie When Harry Met Sally, “I’ll have what she’s having”. It might not be an orgasm, but it sure does feel good. Note: if you don’t know this scene from the film, look it up on YouTube – it’s a scream, literally.
For “sales conversion” I simply got a number of people in my street-team to search for the book and buy it. So I estimated my sales conversion to be way over the average at about 65%. Note: A “street team” is usually a group of people you can trust to buy your book. They are usually fans of your previous books, beta-test readers, or friends and family.
For “Amazon Sales Ranking” I ran a small promotion a few days before to ensure my sales figures were already going up.
So will this method work for other authors such as yourself? I’m sure it will if you take care of the three main criteria points I mentioned.
Here’s another example for a book I helped promote.
Here I promoted a British espionage novel called Dead Man Falling
. You can see this clearly at the top of the three books listed, which includes in third place a very successful author Robert Harris whose book An Officer and a Spy
is incidentally one of my favorite all time books.
If you look carefully at the top left of the image, you will see that the search results being displayed here are for the search words “British spy novels”. And yes, I used the method I explained above to get the book to #1 of Amazon’s search results. This one was not quite so easy since the search word is not in the book’s title, but I ensured it was in the book’s keywords which you can select using Kindle Direct Publishing.
So there you have it, a great example of Disruptive Marketing where I took a book that was not in any of the top 100 search results for a certain keyword, and moved it right to the top of the pile. As is the nature with Disruptive Marketing, it does not mean it will stay at the top for a long time since there is intensive competition to get to page 1 of Amazon. Yet if you maintain the three criteria points I mentioned, it can be kept there for a long time. For example, my book on self-publishing has been on page 1 of Amazon for many months now.
Your challenge in making it happen
So now it’s your turn. As the much beloved comedy actor Robin Williams instructed us to do in the film Dead Poets Society, “Carpe Diem. Seize the day. Make your lives extraordinary.” Well, your book at least.
Getting your book on page 1 of Amazon’s search results is possible following the options I have just revealed. As an author, you have two main methods for making this happen for you:
- If you are an author who likes to do the marketing yourself and have a big enough street-team to help you out, you just have to follow the technique I have explained to you. Clearly, the more competitive the search word you are targeting, the more sales and high conversion rates you will need, but as I have shown with how I did this myself, you should get there in the end.
- The other method is for authors who don’t want to spend time marketing their books and prefer to concentrate more on just writing. In this case, hire a virtual assistant or book promoter to get these results for you.
This article is an extract from Richard McCartney’s new book Self Publishing Disruption. He is founder of KindleBookReview and KindleBookPromotions, sites that help authors promote their books. He is also author of The Unofficial Authors Guide To Buying And Selling Your Book On Amazon, and Self-Publishing: The Secret Guide To Becoming A Best Seller. In his blogs, he offers advice on “Book Marketing” especially on popular sites like Amazon. He can be reached at www.kindlebookpromotions.com.