Marketing and promotion

I’m Not Counting, Amazon

I have been trying really hard to ignore Amazon’s maths.

When His Brand Of Beautiful launched, I didn’t even know where one looked to find sales ranking data. Every time an author on Facebook posted: I’m Number 1 in skirt-wearing dryads who dance beneath the moon on Mondays, I thought: “great” or “brilliant”, and wondered how the heck they knew that.

Unfortunately, darn-you Amazon, you made it too easy.

I now know where one looks to find sales ranking data. One just needs to run one’s little blue-gray eyes south a tad on one’s book page and it’s listed right there. In bold. You can’t miss it.

And it changes regularly, enticing one to check, regularly.

His Brand Of Beautiful has been in the 100,000s, and it has been in the fifty-thousands. The best I think it has been is around 32,000.

When I first discovered that magical number and told my husband, he almost fell off his chair.

“Really? Thirty-two thousandth in all of Amazon? Are you sure? There must be millions of books on Amazon.”

I immediately went to water. “I’m not sure. Maybe thirty-two thousandth in contemporary romance or something like that.”

“Ahh,” he said, turning back to his paper. “That’s probably more like it.”

But I now know that the thirty-two thousandth WAS for all of Amazon, for Amazon Best Sellers Rank, paid in Kindle Store.

It’s fair to say that my enthusiasm for sales-rank checking has waned, just a tad, as the month has worn on. Yesterday, I didn’t check at all. Oh, okay. Once or twice I might have had a look. A mere glance.

Right now, I’m sitting at 98,376.

I have come to think that when you’re in the 50,000 to 100,000 ranking, little changes make a big difference. For example, my lovely sister-in-law during the week posted a link to His Brand Of Beautiful with a message to her Facebook friends about looking for it next time they wanted a good book.

Before she sent her message, I’d just checked Amazon and I was in the 110,000s. Two hours after that FB post, His Brand Of Beautiful sat in the mid 40,000s.

How can that be? Can a handful of book sales make such a huge difference between being 100s or 50s?? I think it must.

I’ve been reading a bit about Amazon’s algorithms… (must be the best alliteration in the universe that one); and in the end, all that maths defeats me. My brain shuts down.

I think I’ve come full circle in my debut author month. I think I’m back in more of a “let the numbers do what they will and write the next book” mode…

But then, that’s cheating too. Apparently there’s some magical “multiplier effect” that might come in to play when I publish another book… and another…

See? One cannot get away from Amazon’s maths. No matter how one might try!

5 thoughts on “I’m Not Counting, Amazon”

  1. Best not get to caught up in those numbers Lily. Write the next book. Although it will be interesting to see what happens when you add another novel into the mix. But I think your promo-ing has to be fairly consistent (something I’ve only just learned! lol) and I believe Annie Seaton could tell you a lot about the multiplier effect. She’s pretty amazing with the numbers elements. Hope your sales stay high and your ranking in that magical sub 100’s. Cheers.

  2. All the best with your fabulous book Lily and if you want to stop looking at Amazon try novelrank instead. (google for site) The only thing is it doesn’t backdate but HBOB might already be in there – go to track book and enter details. This site ESTIMATES (not true figures!!) how many books you have sold as per the fluctation in Amazon rankings. So forget about watching Amazon and just check novel rank every now and then and you will be all good:)

  3. Wow Lily! What great info. 32,000th is excellent – and now I know where to find the dreaded numbers when I get to this stage. Until then, I’ll continue with my next book … Well done you!

  4. Hi Lily….I only have an understanding of Amazon ranks by absolute immersion in rank checking and OCD consistency over one whole year… and lots of reading. I am sure there is a little man behind the computer at Amazon ( visualize the goblin bankers at Gringrotts Bank in Harry Potter) who falls about laughing every time I check. she is again.
    I don’t purport to understand how it works but I can predict at any given time of day what my ranking will be when I check with almost ninety percent accuracy!
    Holiday Affair climbed to #364 so you can imagine the hysteria in my household that day!
    Good luck with sales. Love the title and the cover!

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