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Kindle Book Review Article:

               The following Kindle Book Review article is aimed at helping you promote your book


The recent 2015 Book Marketing Survey carried out by KindleBookReview ( provides a number of interesting insights into the best ways self-published authors should be promoting their ebooks. With over 300 indie authors participating in the survey, questions ranged from the best places to advertise their books to how much money they spend on promoting their books each year. In the first release of the survey, KindleBookReview asks authors about the importance of book reviews in promoting ebooks, and provides recommended best practices.

Here are the main take-aways from the survey that all independent (indie) authors should be aware of:

Main take-aways:

The survey results show:

· The vast majority of authors greatly appreciate the value of honest book reviews, and believe they help improve the credibility of their book, and helps generate sales

· Getting reviews remains difficult, partially explaining why reviews are so valued

· The majority of authors approve of paid review services as long as they are honest

· A very small minority of authors seek reviews only if they are favorable

About the survey:

The objective of the survey was to gather insights from self-published authors in order to provide insights into the best way to promote books. Authors were invited to the survey through social media channels and email, with over 300 respondents taking part. A full copy of the survey can be obtained by contacting us via our website below. A full copy of the survey can be obtained by contacting us from our website, or downloading it at

The following are just some of the question and answers provided in the survey:

How helpful are book reviews in improving your book sales?

On the specific question of how helpful reviews are in improving book sales, the general response was quite unequivocal:

· 77% agreed that reviews were either "extremely helpful" or "helpful"

· Only 3% stated they were not helpful

Given the high value the majority of authors place on reviews, authors were then asked how difficult it was to get reviews for their books:

· The majority (41%) stated it was "difficult" to obtain reviews, while another 26% stated it was "very difficult", making a combined total of 67%

· Less than 9% states it was "easy" or "very easy".

Figure: 77% of authors find reviews either "extremely helpful" or "helpful"
(for a better view of this diagram please download the PDF document mentioned above)

The difficulty in getting reviews is a well-known challenge for authors. According to Michael Alvear, in his book "Making a Killing on Amazon", just 0.0002 % of readers of one of the best selling books on Amazon will post a review. Other sources, such as Steve Levitt and Stephen Dubner's blog , "Freakonomics", estimates that just 1 in 1000 book purchases will post a review – that's 0.001%.

For books being offered for free, the conversion rates can be even worse. In a recent free book promotion, an author managed over 5000 downloads and got only 1 review. So what methods are authors using to try and get reviews? Increasingly, a number of respected sources from KindleBookReview to KirkusReview and Foreward are offering book review services, and many of these reviews are being published on popular sites such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Goodreads.

So we asked authors:

What is your opinion regarding paying others to review your book on Amazon? "

The over-riding majority of authors replied that it was OK to do so, as long as the reviews were honest:

· 37% replied "I'm OK with them, if they provide honest reviews, with another 6% saying they were "strongly, in favor" making a combined total of 43%

We believe this reflects a changing attitude towards professional and paid review services. Additionally, the perception that authors only want positive, 5 star, reviews is also challenged by the results of this survey, with only 2.7% stating "they were OK with reviews, only if they were favorable". Even if we were to double this number, on the grounds that many authors would not admit to this, the numbers are still very low.

Figure: 43% of authors are OK with paid reviews if they are honest.
(for a better view of this diagram please download the PDF document mentioned above)

A notable number of authors, however, do remain either hesitant (24%), or strongly against (25%) paid book reviews. It seems this topic will be one to debate for a while longer, but in general the number of authors being OK with paid reviews is growing.

Further testimony of this is found in the number of authors and promoters stating they use paid review services and even articles, such as "Book Reviews: Should You Pay for Them?" as published by The Huffington Post, are advising that " if you have the money to pay for a review, and feel comfortable doing it, then do so." The article goes on to say that, "now paying for reviews is a commonplace practice. Foreward ($295), Kirkus (standard service $425, express service $575), and Publishers Weekly (various guidelines), offer programs where you "pay to play."

KindleBookReview has been promoting author's books for many years now, encouraging its network of keen readers to purchase and review books. It recommends the following best practices for authors seeking book reviews:

Best practices for 2016:

1) Like professional publishers, ensure you invest some money in marketing your book, including getting reviews for your book. As The Huffington Post acknowledges, authors now have to "pay to play" in the self-published world. So do consider paid review services.

2) Don't expect to get too many reviews from the common practice of asking friends and family to review your book. Nor from the people buying your book - for every 1000 sales, you might get one or two reviews.

3) Free book offer promotions are very unlikely to get you decent reviews if any. Beware that free promotions can result in getting a few poor or sloppy reviews, generally giving a bad impression of the type of readers you attract. To avoid this, find people who will write honest reviews afterwards so that your most recent reviews look decent to prospective buyers of your book.

4) Ask reviewers to purchase your book so that their reviews show as an Amazon "verified purchase" review. They carry more weight, and are more likely to be trusted by your potential buyer.

5) Where possible, ask reviewers to say they got a complimentary or free copy of your book in return for a review – this will help comply with many certain review policies on certain websites.

6) Aim for as many reviews as possible, and a minimum of 5 to 10 reviews. Given a choice between two similar books, buyers will most likely buy the book with most reviews. Books with 50 or more reviews will tell the buyer you have a good numbers of readers; books with 100 plus reviews will give the impression your book is widely read. Books with many reviews will attract even more reviews.

7) Avoid getting just 4 and 5 star reviews. Buyers want honest reviews of your book, so this usually means getting a few 1 or 2 star reviews as well. It might hurt your pride, but it will help you out in the long run.

About KindleBookReview:

KindleBookReview enables authors to boost sales and improve their visibility in the market by promoting their books to enthusiastic readers. Our creative input gathering and scheduling service to respective buyers, combined with a strong North American and global crowd sourced workforce is breaking down the traditional barriers of cost, volume, and reach in seeking new readers and reviewers. For more information, visit .



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