So you’ve published your ebook and now you want to give it a boost and reach a wider audience – you start looking at paid promotional sites such as Bookbub. Unfortunately not all promotional sites are equal. Don’t fear, I’m here to help you fight your way through the quagmire and get the most sales for your money.
What To Look For In Ebook Promotion Sites.
How easy is it to sign up for the mailing list as a reader?
When you first go to the website in question, how easy is it for you as a reader to sign up the mailing list? Is there a nice big clear button right there for you to click? Or do you have to dig around and find it?
If you have to click around and find it, then the chances are far lower that people will put in the time and effort to do so. That means that their mailing list will be smaller than is ideal, and to be blunt, I’d also wonder how much effort they put into that list if they can’t make their site clean, clear, and easy to navigate.
Do they guarantee results?
If they guarantee results then you should run for the hills. Amazon holds the publisher, i.e. the indie author that the book belongs to, entirely responsible if something dodgy happens with your sales and reads (if you’re in Kindle Unlimited). They explicitly say in their TOS that they themselves very strongly recommend you do not use any promotional avenue that guarantees a set number of sales or readers. Don’t do it. It’s not even close to worth it.
Some sites will give you an idea of expected results, but they’re not guaranteed, so they’re all ok and above board.
How many books go out in each email?
Do they carefully curate their emails so that there are a maximum of five per email? Or do they throw in 50+ books per email.
There is a size limit set on emails. If an email goes past that point then the recipient has to click a teeny tiny little link at the bottom to view the entire email. The chances of someone doing that are very low. There’s a chance that your book could be one of those that never made it into the email. If that happens, then you threw $50 or however much into thin air.
The best way to check that is to sign up to the list yourself and look through the emails for a couple of weeks before you decide to book a slot for your book.
Do they have a good reputation?
Do some digging around in writing communities and on forums – does the site have a good reputation? Are they well thought of? Do they tend to have a positive ROI (return on investment)?
How well do they do with your genre?
Each site will tend to do better with one or two genres than others. Their readership has been built with a leaning towards say epic fantasy and historical fiction. Look into it and figure out if they’re a good fit for your genre. Once you’re signed up to their mailing list pick out some books that are in your genre and watch their sales rank. How high does it go on the day of the email? How long does it stay that high?
Do they have one huge mailing list or a collection of smaller ones?
A site that has a collection of smaller lists is preferable. The lists are done by genre, and they mean that readers only receive books in the genre/s they’re interested in. That means they’re far more likely to click through and buy books that they see in those emails.
If they don’t mention whether they have one list or multiple lists on their website then you can check by signing up yourself. When you sign up, if they have multiple lists you’ll be asked to choose which genre/s you’re most interested in.
What you’re looking for.
- A professionally produced website that makes it quick and easy for readers to sign up to the mailing list/s.
- A site that does not guarantee a set number of sales or reads on Kindle Unlimited.
- A limited number of books per email. You don’t want to risk handing over money only to have no one ever see your book.
- A good reputation among fellow indie authors. You want somewhere that at least breaks even and has good customer service.
- A site that does well with your particular genre. Some sites do better with romance, some with fantasy, and so on.
- Ideally, a site that has multiple email lists so that readers are far more likely to be engaged.
If you found this post helpful check out my Urban Fantasy books on Amazon.