YA Author Series: Keywords and Tags

bryna butlerI’m constantly experimenting with keywords and tags. They are a must need for any author trying to sell books online. Tags can help readers find your books. Amazon has what I feel is the most advanced system for tag/keyword use.

If you publish through Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing, you can designate two categories for your books and up to seven keywords. Use these. Amazon takes into account your category, keywords, and the text of the book description and title whenever a customer conducts a search.

I haven’t read anything that could say exactly how this information is weighted. Because Amazon doesn’t say, there are two schools of thought on the subject. 1) use key words and phrases over and over again in your description, keywords, wherever you can, because that repetition can strengthen how Amazon perceives the relevancy of your work to that specific search word or phrase. 2) use different words in your description, keywords, etc. to give your book the maximum exposure¬†achievable.

I don’t know which of these two are true. You can test it out, and let me know your results. And while you test those theories think about this one…Keywords for positioning toward bestselling status in a niche.

This is a tactic where authors seek out and use keywords or categories that retrieve a small pool of results for searches. The thought behind this is that it is much easier to be positioned as number 1 in a pool of 24 than in a pool of 320,763.

Here are some random searches that I pulled today on Amazon’s book category and the number of results returned:

search results returned*
young adult 320,763
paranormal romance 27,727
teen paranormal romance 2,066
fantasy 263,921
science fiction 295,684
teen series 14,464
mystery 311,549
ya drama 2,560
young adult series 17,732
vampire 34,919
werewolf 8,112
dystopian 2,550
*Searches conducted on U.S. Amazon site on 5/3/13

Is your book lost in a sea of thousands? Are you reaching customers that will have a genuine interest in your genre? Is there room to improve? It’s worth a fresh look.

Check out these blogs to see what the other YA Author Club members have to say on the subject. (btw, I’m tagging the heck out of this post!!!)

1. Laura A. H. Elliott 2. Bryna Butler, author Midnight Guardian series
3. T. R. Graves, Author of The Warrior Series 4. Suzy Turner, author of The Raven Saga
5. Rachel Coles, author of Into The Ruins, geek mom blog 6. K. C. Blake, author of Vampires Rule and Crushed
7. Gwenn Wright, author of Filter 8. Liz Long | Just another writer on the loose.
9. Ella James 10. Maureen Murrish
11. YA Sci Fi Author’s Ramblings 12. A Little Bit of R&R
13. Melissa Pearl 14. Terah Edun – YA Fantasy
15. Heather Sutherlin – YA Fantasy

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