Let's Get Visible: How To Get Noticed And Sell More Books: Volume 2 (Let's Get Publishing) Paperback – 30 May 2013
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Top Customer Reviews
I must confess, my reservations about this release were already present before I delved into it. Reasons for which, I will conclude with.
Gaughran obviously knows what he's talking about. At least the information herein isn't a constant battering of 'tweet this' 'blog that'. He seems to understand the inner workings of Amazon's somewhat bizarre sales structure and rank.
However, I come to my major gripe here - Gaughran's 'success' itself. Obviously, I have no idea what he makes and I dare say it's none of my business and I might be wrong. Maybe he sells millions under another pen name. That said, currently his works of fiction are nowhere near the sales rank required to make a living. Valparaiso, at the time of writing in the UK, is 130,000. From personal experience, that means you're selling a handful of copies every week. His two non-fiction efforts, however, are riding nicely near the top, probably being the crust earner. For me, that is somewhat bizarre. We have someone who's struggling to sell fiction as much as myself, selling huge amounts of instructional books, describing how to get said books noticed! And perhaps that's why this book was made, instead of another fictional offering.
Perhaps I'm being pessimistic, but common sense would tell you to take advice with a pinch of salt, when the person giving it struggles to succeed with his own methods.
I've given it two stars because there IS some good advice in it. However, the actual information about how to become more visible on Amazon is not as plentiful as the information about how good it will be when you ARE (more visible on Amazon). One piece of the information, and a key one, at that, is actually incorrect. Gaughran claims that you need to identify the categories in which to place your book, and email Amazon asking them to place them there, giving the exact chain you have identified. I spent AGES working all this out, looking at other books, etc. I emailed Amazon who told me that I had been misinformed, and referred me to the form you get when you first publish, to select your categories and sub-categories. Furthermore, the categories in which you see other books are not necessarily those you can request to be placed in, but those that arise because of hits on your book via search terms entered by book buyers. This explains why my book You Wish sometimes appears in the genre chart for 'Occult', although I have never put it in that category.
I also wish I had read Lee's 3 star review first. I have since noticed (by looking at the Amazon ratings) that Mr Gaughran's fiction publications actually sell less than my books do. It does rather confirm my theory that the people making money via these 'how to sell books' books are mostly the authors of said books.
The style of this book is very straight-forward and easy to follow. It explains some fairly complicated systems in simple language, and it continually reminds you of what was covered in previous chapters. The focus is on Amazon's Kindle store (since that is where the majority of ebook sales take place), but there is also a section on other online retailers.
One of the most valuable aspects is the description of how Amazon's various charts work. Amazon is famously secretive about their algorithms, so although this book is based on observation and trial and error rather than insider knowledge, it offers a valuable insight. Another interesting topic is how to make best use of Amazon's book categories. There will be a lot of authors hurriedly tweaking their books' data after reading this!
This is definitely required reading for self-publishers, but it is not a bible to be revered or followed to the letter. Many of the suggestions are born out of personal opinion with no guarantees. David Gaughran himself makes it clear that there is no one-size-fits-all solution for authors, and a large part of success is luck. But he is certainly to be congratulated for letting some fresh air into the secretive world of Amazon and sharing some much-needed advice.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Another great book on digital publishing. As the author states, read book 1 first, then read this one. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Andy Graham
OK, but nothing new that you couldn't read in a free blog! Could condense this book down to one page, the rest is fluff! Save your money.Published 1 month ago by Miranda M.
The chapters on how Amazon's algorithms work were most interesting, although I will need to re-read them in order to fully understand. Read morePublished 9 months ago by VM Sang
A must read for any self pub author. Thank you David, for making my journey, a little bit easier.Published 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
This is full of amazing tips one would never think of. A bit too techy for the likes of me (should have realised by the title) but I will definitely follow some of his suggestions. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Denise Barnes
The book itself is very insightful and I was surprised to find out about how one or 2 of the ranking algorithms worked. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Amazon Customer
Incredible book. Finally makes sense of so many things that I have read about, but never really fully understood. Read morePublished 15 months ago by MISS MARISHA PINK
Really liked the content of this book. A valuable resource for any indie publishing author like me. Well done David Gaughran!Published 17 months ago by David H Downham