Since my novel launched on February 16, I’ve checked the Amazon web site no less than 50 times a day (seriously), hoping and praying that my sales ranking continues to improve. Nothing creates more of a book buzz than sales figures. The better the sales rank, the greater the reader interest. As one of the most successful on-line retailers in the world, understandably, an author’s ranking on Amazon.com is significant and consequential.
My Kindle numbers have been excellent. But this in large part is due to a big push by Amazon Encore, my publisher. (And by the way, if you’d like to read the whole story of how I finally got published after writing 4 novels and 16+ years of rejection, click on “ALL ABOUT THE BOOK” at the top of my home page.) But my paperback sales have been so-so. Until this morning.
I fired up my computer just before noon and the first thing I checked of course was Amazon. Frankly, I wasn’t expecting to see any major improvement in the paperback sales. My publicist, who specializes in author marketing, told me not to get impatient, that her efforts in the marketplace might not impact sales for a few weeks. So, naturally, I had no lofty expectation.
I first checked my Kindle numbers. Overall ranking: #123. Not bad considering that Amazon offers over 400,000 book titles on Kindle. And then there are specific genres within fiction, or what you might call sub-categories such as Suspense, Thriller, Mainstream, Police Procedural, etc. Well, here’s what I found:
|#9 in||Kindle Store > Kindle Books > Literary Fiction|
|#16 in||Books > Literature & Fiction > Literary|
|#54 in||Books > Literature & Fiction > Contemporary|
If you don’t think that these numbers painted a smile on my face, think again. I was stoked to the 10th power.
Now I faced the tough part: checking my paperback ranking. The last time I looked, my ranking was #12,083. Not terrible considering that Amazon offers over 4 million paperback book titles. But certainly not where I wanted to be. What I discovered today, however, blew my mind. My overall sales ranking as of noon today was #587, and take a look at this sub-category:
|#9 in||Books > Mystery & Thrillers > Police Procedurals|
My novel currently ranks in the Top 10 of Police Procedurals? Wow! Not to dilute the importance of these awesome numbers, bear in mind that it doesn’t require significant sales to move your ranking from #1,000,000 to #1,000. The high numbers are dramatically affected by just a handful of sales. However, once your ranking is in the hundreds, moving upward is a new ballgame. It might require 100 sales to move from #500 to #499. And if a book’s ranking is in double digits, it could take 1,000 sales to move up just one digit.
So, needless to say, I have no “Good News-Bad News” story today.
It’s all good!