So you have written your book, edited, changed it multiple times and now you're ready to publish it as an independent author.
That took you a while didn't it? But you're on a high, the document is complete, the cover is ready, now all you have to do is upload it to Amazon and watch the cash roll in.
Oh if only it was that easy.
Without a big publisher behind you, the chances of your reaching best seller and making a living from your writing is low at the best.
But that's not to say you can't do things to improve that and increase your chances of being the next Stephen King.
I hate marketing, it is time consuming and boring. Blogging, Social media pushing your book wherever and whenever you can, makes me feel like a sleazy salesman.
However the reality is if you want to sell even a few books, it has to be done.
So I thought today I would cover Amazon categories. There is a few things that you can do, to at least give your book the best chance you can to be seen within your specific genre.
I will cover Keywords in my next post and how you can use Amazon ads to market your book and hopefully make more sales.
But for now let's concentrate on Categories.
When you upload your book.to amazon KDP it allows you to pick two categories for your book to appear in on Amazon.
It looks something like this.
As you see the above image shows that this book is aimed at Comics and Graphic Novels, but there is many others to choose from to fit your specific genre. Just make sure the ones you choose do fit the book you have written.
So the categories this item is placed in are:
Comics &Graphic Novels > General
Comics & Graphic Novel > Crime and Mystery
However did you know that you can have another seven categories that your book can be placed in. Amazon. doesn't tell you this but you can, you just have to tell KDP which categories you want adding.
Fabulous but how do you do that? What categories can you use?
Well you could make it easy and purchase something like Publisher Rocket that does all the hard work for you, saving you loads of time clicking and scrolling on Amazon. It's a great tool for keywording too, but again it's spending money that you might not have.
So to do it manually and get the categories that fit your book, you have to do some online searching.
To do this follow the instructions below:
Go to Amazon and enter the book department and tap in your books genre followed by 100 best sellers.
A list of books will show like the one's below.
Click on the books similar to yours and go down to the product details as shown below:
Here you can see the categories that this particular book is assigned to and its relative position according to sales.
Placed 3rd in Violence against woman
Placed 82 in Crime & Mystery Graphic Novels
If you then click on one of these links, let's say Crime & Mystery Graphic Novels it will take you to the best sellers in that category.
Again go to the product lists of these best sellers and see which categories they are in. Jot them down until you have a substantial list to choose from.
Pick the best 7 from your list that fits your book the best. Now you're ready for the next step.
Contact KDP through their Help page and ask them to add your book to the 7 categories you have chosen.
To get to that page go to KDP then click on the following in order.
Your Account - Help (top right) - Contact us (bottom left) - Amazon store and product detail page (top of the list) - Update Amazon Categories
You should end up here...
Delete everything in the message box after reading the instructions and do the following.
These instructions are just for a single book and not several all at once. I wanted to keep it simple.
Give them your ASIN or ISBN and Book Title and Author
Once here, ask them to add your Book to the following categories
Then write each category out like below.
Books > Comics & Graphic Novels > Genre
Books > Comics & Graphic Novels > Genre > Magic & Fantasy
Books > Comics & Graphic Novels > Genre > Super-Heroes
And so on till you have all the categories you want you book to be placed in. Remember you can have up to seven in total on top of the two offered when you upload your book.
Once you have done this repeat the process for your e-book.
Search your genre e book 100 best sellers and repeat the process.
Customer services should then get in touch and say that they have added said categories. (Hopefully without any issues)
It can take a while for them to do this so be patient.
Your book will now be showing in all these categories.
It's important to remember that there is no guarantee that this will generate more sales, but it certainly increases your chances.
Now your book is in the right categories.
Look out for my next blog post, we will take a look at Keywords, how to pick the best ones for your book and how to use them effectively in a marketing ad.
I hope this blog post has been helpful and if you have any questions please get in touch.
I'm always happy to help if I can.
Please leave a comment and share around. It all helps and it's free !