Categories are key for Amazon book promotion! Today’s post is a recap of “Amazon Insider: Why Picking the Right Amazon Categories Can Help You Sell More Books (and how to do it!),” an episode on our Book Marketing Tips & Author Success podcast.
We go deep in our discussion about this timely topic for authors trying to figure out the ins and outs of Amazon book promotion, so be sure to download and listen to the show for all the details, recommendations, and considerations!
Amazon Book Promotion and Categories
I love Amazon categories for a variety of reasons, including the number you can have and the way you can capitalize on how particular consumers are with their book preferences.
To understand more about categories, open up the Amazon store in a web browser and head on over to eBooks. Down the left hand side of your screen, you’ll be able to see the various categories available. When you click on one, let’s say business or mystery, more options will drop down.
This categorization system can be gold for Amazon book promotion because it lets you get much more specific about your market. Spend a little time exploring all the options that are open to you.
As you’re doing this, check out the books in niche categories where your book might fit. You’ll see some titles where the authors are obviously playing the system because they don’t belong in that category, but if most of the books in a given category would actually appeal to your same buyer market, then you’ve found a winner.
The more narrow you go – meaning the fewer books there are in a given category – the more adding yours can help your algorithm. If you hit #1 in a narrow category, it will ping the Amazon search engine that your book is relevant and selling, and Amazon will show it more – like in the also-boughts, etc.
The cautionary note here is that a lot of authors want that bestseller flag, so don’t cram your book into a category where it doesn’t belong just because it’s not a competitive category – don’t violate Amazon’s terms of service, because you could get your book pulled.
The idea, really, is to grab 10 categories, and I’d do 10 for your eBook and 10 for your print book. Once you have your 10/20 categories, you’ll work with Amazon to implement them. We give our clients very straightforward instructions on this because it’s a request Amazon pretty much expects at this point.
Following the steps to submit your category request the right way the first time will save you a lot of time and potential headaches. We developed 0ur Amazon video program (linked below in the Resources and Free Downloads) to help authors get visual and audio instructions on how to master this and other aspects of Amazon book promotion.
Wear Your Buyer Hat
Amazon adds new categories as they see market interest: “Christmas romance,” “holiday romance,” and “small town romance,” for example, are relatively new categories, and I’ve also started seeing better representation of specific industries under the business umbrella.
An important key to Amazon book promotion is striving for objectivity. Try to approach the task of categorizing your book through the filter of reader/shopper, rather than author. If you do, you are more likely to see some lucrative categories that you might otherwise overlook.
For more tips and information on Amazon book promotion, don’t forget to give the full podcast episode – “Amazon Insider: Why Picking the Right Amazon Categories Can Help You Sell More Books (and how to do it!)” – a listen.
The beginning of the year is a great time to review your Amazon presence in your book marketing and promotion plan. We love helping authors work through the ins and outs of Amazon book promotion, so don’t hesitate to reach out if you want 2021 to be your Amazon bestselling year!