How Does Amazon.com Sales Rank Work?

chrismcmullen

AMAZON.COM SALES RANK

Amazon assigns a sales rank to every product that has sold at least one time.

The lower the number, the better the product is selling.

For example, a sales rank of 2500 is better than a sales rank of 375,000.

The product that sells the best in its category has a sales rank of 1.

CATEGORY RANKS

Amazon has different ranks for different types of products.

Books are ranked independently from sports equipment and video games, for example.

For a given type of product, there are also category ranks.

For example, a few Books categories include Romance, Children’s, and Science.

A great overall rank is more impressive than a category rank.

For example, a book has to sell quite frequently to rank 500 overall in Books, but can sell much less frequently and still rank 500 in Romance.

A good rank in a broad category is more…

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Do you know the difference in a prologue and epilogue?

Jean's Writing

And

How do you know when a story needs one or both?

My current work in progress (WIP) has a short introduction (prologue.) So, I thought doing a little research on the subject might be in order. After all, I do want the reader to read past the first couple of pages. Right?

Here’s what I learned about the two.

  • A writer can use both to bookend a novel or use just one.
  • A prologue is where you can introduce something important to the story.
  • An epilogue is the cherry on top. The ending after the ending.

What I learned about a prologue.

A prologue should include one or all the three elements.

  1. Setting/fictional world and how the character came to be there.
    • Set the stage with a frame of reference for the reader.
  2.  An event key to the story and a character’s response.
    • Describe with action and suspense, not just adjectives.

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How to Become a Great Author

A Writer's Path

by Jordan Jolley

Each author has different tactics of writing. Some authors will work from sunup to sundown while others may have part-time jobs. Some may have a deep love for historical fiction while another has a deep love for romance. Of course, one specific set of writing methods isn’t the same among authors. However, there are some tips and habits that will be very useful to anyone who writes. They are important tips.

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My WIP And Men And Women Descriptions In Literature

Nicholas C. Rossis

Lego Stormtroopers | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's book Image: Pixabay

My current Work In Progress (WIP) is a sci-fi mystery romance taking place 100 years from now on a Greek island. Its working title is Clones (it will change) and yes, I know this is the first time I mention it.

I started writing it with a male protagonist and a female android gradually becoming a bit of his romantic interest. Together, they uncover a dastardly plot involving clones, an artist, and a reclusive billionaire.

Honestly, it’s better than it sounds. Anyway, wait till you read what happened next: halfway through the story, I realized it all worked much better if I inverted the genders! So, the protagonist is now a woman cop with a growing interest in a male android.

Which meant I had to rewrite quite a few scenes–and descriptions. While doing that, I was struck by how a scene that was fine for a woman became…

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How to make your characters likable?

Jean's Writing

Or…

Is it necessary that every character be likable?

Faceless woman www.jeanswriting.com

Need all characters be —

pleasant, nice friendly, agreeable, affable, amiable, genial, personable, charming, popular, good-natured, engaging, appealing endearing convivial, congenial, simpatico, winning, delightful, enchanting, lovable, adorable, sweet, or lovely?

Recently, I just finished a book but didn’t like a single character. However, I did want the main character to succeed. This strange and bizarre book kept me captivated.

So, back to my first question, is it necessary for any or all characters to be liked by the reader?

Faces in a puzzle www.jeanswriting.com

This is an issue I’m struggling with right now. In my current WIP, I’m not sure my main character is likable. I want people to like her, emphasize with her and pull for her, but I don’t want her to come off whinny. I hate whining. Even in real life.

How do we accomplish giving characters qualities that a reader can relate to, but…

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Author Inspiration and This Week’s Writing Links

Staci Troilo

ImpossibleAnother week has flown by. Deadlines are looming, and my pulse is tripping.

When I got sick Wednesday and lost a full day of production, I panicked.

Then I took a deep breath. Things were what they were. I lost that budgeted time. I was five thousand words in the hole. I could moan about it, but what good would that do me? I had to make it up.

So I did.

Thursday, I posted over ten thousand words, and I finished the first draft. Actually worked long enough to finish a day ahead of schedule, and I’m ready to start my first proof.

If you had asked me about writing that much in a day, I’d say I’d come close twice but never managed it. If you had asked me if I could do it while not quite over an illness, I’d have scoffed.

“Impossible,” I’d have said.

Look…

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The Two Pillars of Novel Structure

A Writer's Path

by Michael Mohr

I want to talk briefly about novel structure because, as a novel editor, I see all kinds of basic issues from the majority of the aspiring writer-clients I work with. There is a wealth of info out there on the web but I wanted to give you a little taste of what makes a solid novel. Because, especially if you write commercial fiction and hope to land an agent and get published, novel structure is incredibly important to pay attention to.

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How “Also Bought” Can Help You Sell More Books

Nicholas C. Rossis

written word media logo | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksRicci Wolman of Written Word Media recently published a detailed post on “Also Boughts.” As the post explains, Amazon is using every trick to increase sales. A particularly powerful one is Also Boughts; the list of items people who bought something also bought.

Examples:

  • People who buy baby formula also buy Diapers
  • People who buy a bathing suit also buy suntan lotion
  • People who bought Jurrasic Park by Michael Crighton also bought Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

You see this play out all over the Amazon website in the Also Bought items that appear on every product page on Amazon.

How Can This Help Your Book?

First of all, you want to make sure your “Also Boughts” are aligned with your specific genre so your book is targeted toward the right kind of reader.

A common mistake (from Amazon’s point of view) people make is to ask friends…

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Do you focus on the eyes to see the character?

Jean's Writing

Do you believe the eyes are windows to the soul?

Whether you believe this cliché or not, eyes are important. How you describe the eyes of a character can reveal a lot to the reader.

“Eyes that sparkled like sapphires glanced my way.”

This sentence tells us only that the person is blue-eyed.

BUT…

“Cold, blue eyes locked with mine. A chill rippled down my spine.” 

Tells us the character has blue eyes and may be dangerous.

“Her blue gaze froze me in place.”

Lets us know the character is a woman and she ain’t happy.

“Lines crinkled at the corners of her sapphire eyes as they danced with mischief.”

This last one, again indicates the character is a woman and she may be laughing at or with another character.

If a body part is as important as William Shakespeare contended, we need to make certain our readers see into the heart…

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Ubersuggest: An Awesome Free Keyword Tool

Nicholas C. Rossis

Ubersuggest | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's bookYou may remember my review of Dave Chesson’s (aka Kindlepreneur’s) KDP Rocket. KDP Rocket is by far the easiest way to find keywords for your Amazon ads, as it searches for books similar to yours (in the Also Bought department) and offers these in a handy Excel spreadsheet.

I have now discovered the perfect companion to KDP Rocket: Ubersuggest. As the name, well, suggests (Ueber being German for over or hyper), Ubersuggest is a free keyword tool that comes up with more keywords than you can shake your virtual, SEO-supercharged stick at. You can then use these keywords for your Amazon ads, your Google ads, etc.

Even better, Ubersuggest allows you to choose whether you’re focusing on images, web, or shopping (hint: you want shopping).

How To Use It

Say you want to create an Amazon Marketing Services (AMS) campaign for your children’ book. You’ve already used KDP…

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