Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Book Marketing – Setting up your Amazon Author Page by Sally Cronin

I began promoting authors and their books back in 2001 and then it was all about splashy book launches, press releases and getting local coverage. Indie authors had it tough in those days trying to break into the establishment and get the attention of national press, but could do very well locally.

It is very different today in many respects, but certainly you can still make a big splash in your own local area, especially if our books are relevant to the history of the area. Press releases and going door to door to established businesses such as bookshops, cafes, art galleries and holding book signings can certainly launch a book and possibly get the attention of a wider audience and the national press.

Six years ago I began promoting my own books (particularly Ebooks as I tend to still go local for my print books) and a handful of authors here on Smorgasbord, which over the next two years developed to become The Cafe and Bookstore.  This celebrated three years of book promotions earlier in the year and there are between 150 and 175 active authors with new releases and reviews at any given time.

Taking my experience of the ups and downs of book marketing over the last 18 years I feel that if I can give a helping hand to other authors, it might help them navigate the marketing process a little more effectively. Especially when we have a global marketplace at our fingertips.

I am delighted that I am in a position to showcase authors here on my blog and on social media. And for me it is important to provide this FREE as I know how tough it was back when I started, and even more so now, to get noticed.

However, I have over the years found some stumbling blocks that are common to many authors.

It would be lovely to think that we write a book and readers will then flock through the doors on the online bookstore and grab a copy. Unfortunately today you are in competition with the many thousands of other books that are published that week, particular in a popular genre on a worldwide basis.

So everything you do online has to have one clear goal, and that is to encourage readers to buy your book. But all the promotions in the world with wonderful blurb and reviews are not effective unless they address one very important question.

Where do you want potential readers to end up? 

Somewhere they can buy the book immediately.

For most of us, whichever publishing path we have taken, Amazon is our primary bookseller. Some of you will publish through Amazon’s own Kindle and Print publishing services, others like myself are independent and do our own formatting and design before signing up for a seller account.

But, you do need to meet the technology and worldwide opportunities at least halfway and one of the most effective tools at your disposal, even with one book, but certainly with multiple releases, is the Amazon Author Page.

There are a number of book promotional sites available, mine included, who will promote your book, but we need to put a buy link for your book so that readers can head over and purchase. That link is usually Amazon as it is the largest online bookstore in the world. More importantly it is where those who live online, such as other authors and bloggers have set up accounts to buy their books.

That being the case, I always put the Amazon author page in the bookstore so that when the potential buyer heads over they can see the authors bio, photograph and more importantly, not just one book, but all of them.  They can then choose which book to select, but you never know, they might just pick up another one or two at the same time.

The majority of authors that are promoted here have an Amazon author’s page, but you will be amazed how many do not who ask me to promote their books.

This is one of the most important book marketing tools that you can use as the link should be on all your correspondence, from the signature on your emails to your profiles on all the social media sites you are using. Certainly on your business cards and also at the back of your books, along with the covers of the other books you have written.

From the perspective of a book promoter, it makes it very difficult when an author has five or six books and no author page.. I have to spend considerable time tracking them down and I then do not have one central link to put them under.

This loses you sales.

Amazon is your bookstore, your bookshelf and your author page needs maintenance from time to time.

  1. When was the last time you checked your bio. I see many that are at least a year and a couple of books out of date.
  2. Would a new profile photo give your author page a new look too?
  3. Have you added your blog link so that your posts will show up on the page encouraging readers to visit you there.
  4. Are all your books, including your latest listed on your author page?
  5. Is all the information correct about your books?
  6. Ensure that when your books are uploaded all formats are available on the book selling page. Otherwise you will lose sales from readers looking for either print or Ebooks and not finding it on the same page.

Even if you only have one book, it is a good idea to set up your Author Page and you can do so on both the UK and the US sites as when they list your books on one they might not carry over your bio or other information, including the photograph. Often if you do not manually update your author page on the other country’s site, you will find there is not bio or the photograph is missing so you do need to keep an eye on both.

Even if you have not been the person who uploaded the book, as the author you can sign up for the Author Central or as many of you are a KDP author you can use that identity to log in.

I have taken some screen grabs to illustrate the process. If you feel that uncertain about creating your own author page or need assistance then I suggest you enlist the help of a member of your family who is tech savvy and that you are happy to share your Amazon password with, to do the online side for you.. Just make sure you have prepared your author bio in advance and have a photograph ready.. pass that around friends and see what they think too.

As you can see there is a question in the bottom left hand corner.. Are you an author?  Click on Learn More at Author Central.

This will take you to the log on or sign in screen and click the relevant option to you. If you are signing up for the first time you will need your email address and a new password. Or you can use an existing Amazon identity. Sorry it is not very clear..

Once you have clicked on the options it will then take you to a menu page.

If this is your first visit you will be using the updating your author page option which includes adding your biography (as an author it is a good idea to double check for spelling and grammar!) Not too long but enough to engage with the reader and connect with them. Don’t forget this is your part of your marketing pitch.

Upload a photograph which is another way to connect with potential readers. I do suggest that you use one that is taken by someone else rather than a selfie and they always come out a little better. Also think about how you would like to be perceived by the readers of your books.. dressing appropriately (or not) depending on your genre and personality. Choose a high resolution photograph to begin with, then adjust for size before uploading and you will be given an option to crop.

Now is the time to list your books and you can do this by title, author and ISBN, and when they come up with the cover you can click on  ‘This is my book

You will get a message saying that your book will be added within a few days but I have found that they are usually up within a few hours.

If you already have an Amazon Author page do remember that books are not added automatically or may fail to appear even with KDP.. so it is worth checking and going through this process.

You will be offered the opportunity to save data as you go and once you have finished you will have created an important element of book marketing.

Since I have been laying it on thick about including your Amazon Author Page link here are mine for Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sally-Georgina-Cronin/e/B003B7O0T6

And Amazon US: which is slightly different as it was added later: https://www.amazon.com/Sally-Cronin/e/B0096REZM2

I use the US Author Page Link on all my social media, signature on all my emails and on by business cards. – The reason being… I have 3/4 more US followers than UK/Irish ones and if a UK reader goes into the account they will find more reviews usually and they are linked back to the UK on the Kindle versions anyway.

Which brings me to your email signature.  How many emails are you sending out each year to friends, family, fellow bloggers, authors, tradespeople, etc…. several hundred I would think.. don’t miss out a marketing opportunity and also include your main blog and social media.. you are in business as an author and you should make the most of every opportunity.

Sally Cronin
Latest book: Tales from the Irish Garden
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Sally-Cronin/e/B0096REZM2
Blog : https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com
http://uk.linkedin.com/in/sallycronin1
Twitter: https://twitter.com/sgc58
MeWe: mewe.com/i/sallycronin

I hope that this has been useful.. any questions put them in the comments and you will find it is very straight forward, take one step at a time and practice you bio a few times before you post it.

If you would like I am happy to take a look at your Amazon author page and offer some suggestions as to how you might create a more effective selling message. You can leave the link to your Amazon author page in the comments or you can email me on sally.cronin@moyhill.com

Next time.. why it is a good idea to have a Goodreads author account…..

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82 thoughts on “Sally’s Cafe and Bookstore – Book Marketing – Setting up your Amazon Author Page by Sally Cronin

  1. Great post, Sally. I do have a (fairly) up to date author page, but you mentioned some things I can do to improve it, and I’m going to get right on it later today. I have one of those local engagements you also mentioned this afternoon, and I am SO lucky to have that part of promotion/marketing working well for me. But I have been remiss in many other ways this last year or so, due to quite a few disruptions beyond my control. Still, that’s no excuse for letting things fall behind, and tweaking my author page is something I can do fairly easily. So–I’m gonna! Bookmarking and sharing this post will be the first step. Continuing to update all my links to universal ones might a good second one.

    You’ve inspired me, Sally, as always. And–tada!–you ROCK! 😀 ❤

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you Marcia and for reblogging. I hope that some authors just starting out realise the potential of having your own bookstore.. I have been doing the Christmas fairs the last couple of years and they have been great. And with your wildlife talks as well you are doing a great job of creating a Marcia Meara brand and impacts everything you do on the marketing front.. I expect many of those who attend your talks have ended up on your Amazon author page and bought books. ♥

      Liked by 3 people

      • A lot of local readers came to my talks initially to have a chance to meet me and get a signed book. I always have a signing table set up in the room, and nearly every time, some folks stay behind to buy a book or two. Then many of them go online and buy the rest of the series, etc. Others came/come because of the topic I’m discussing. And they may or may not buy books, but they do know who I am, and they tell others.

        So while I’m not selling hundreds at these events, I do sell some and I’m definitely building a local readership. It’s something I really enjoy, too. But I do have to get better at marketing online. I’m trying to convince myself to do YouTube videos, but I’m not sure I can. (Not real comfortable seeing myself speak.) At any rate, I have one marketing task I can take care of today, thanks to you post! 😀 ❤

        Liked by 3 people

  2. Reblogged this on The Write Stuff and commented:
    Do you have an updated and useful Amazon Author’s Page? If not, you should check out this helpful post by Sally Cronin on her Smorgasbord blog. Great suggestions here, some of which I hadn’t thought of adding to my own Author’s Page. Check out her post, and be sure to pass it along, thanks. And as always, thanks to Sally for another great one! 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Thank you, Sally. I’m glad I found your site through another blogger. If I ever actually finish that book (I imagine every blogger in the world has at least one book started), I’ll know where to go for advice on what to do with it. I’m impressed by your willingness to help those who are just beginning their journey.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. A most excellent compilation and instructional Sal. Happy to say I’m already doing all this, but a good reminder that I really should be doing some updating. Will reblog next week. ❤ xox

    Liked by 2 people

  5. This is such clear and useful advice I’ve saved it and will go through it again tomorrow and start to act on it. I do hate the self-promotion part of writing and am ashamed to admit how bad I am at it. All of this makes sense to me and I’m grateful to you for posting this information. Thanks!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Great to hear.. and I hope the coming weeks will offer you some more help.. and I agree about the self promotion but done well it is not offensive, and after all you wrote to be read and you owe to your work to do your best to get it noticed. I don’t feel comfortable with the hard sell with my own books, but we have to also remember the time, effort and financial investment we made in writing our books. It is a business as well as something we love to do.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Authors central is the site you go to to set up the Authors Page Donna..I went over and checked your Author Page.. and you have everything, except I do suggest changing the profile photo which is a frog to your lovely one holding your dog the same as you have on bookworks and I have on your posts here.. Also you could expand you biography to include a short paragraph about the background to writing Applebutter Hill I hope that helps..hugs

      Liked by 2 people

      • Thanks Sally, I’m having some tech issues. I tried putting in a new bio using Google Chrome, usually the most screen reader friendly, but the Preview button takes me to the page as it was. IE won’t open the bio edit field, so today, I’ll try Firefox and, if that fails, I’ll go back to my old computer with Windows 7. Sooner or later, I’ll break the wall down. 🙂 A frog, though? I can’t imagine how I must have done that. As for the dog in my lap, that was Hunter, and much as I loved the idea of that picture, Mo wants his gorgeous face up there.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sorry you have incompatibility issues Donna, the problem is one upgrades and there is a cascade. Windows 7 is about right.. although they are ceasing supporting it soon unfortunately.. I won’t use ten so it is workarounds and keeping the in house IT department well fed and happy!! And yes Mo of course but it will be a lovely photo I am sure..hugs xx

        Like

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  10. I do have an Amazon Author Page, Sally, but I must check it with the USA one. That I didn’t know.
    I’ve also slipped up on the email signature opportunities, too.
    Thank you for all the help you’ve given over the years.

    Liked by 1 person

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  17. Hi Sally – I had worked out the Amazon author page, but your post here was immensely helpful. I had only just got round to sorting out a direct link and am having problems getting the blog feed to do anything! Anyway – did you know these facilities are only currently available on the .com site? Here is what Amazon said when I contacted them: “I’m sorry that the blogging and customised Author Page URL features are currently not available on Amazon.co.uk. We’re working to make all Author Central features available to all sites.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes they are playing silly beggars.. for a global bookseller there are inconsistencies across the sites including showing reviews from the US but not the other way.. Anyway to be honest you will find over time because of the bigger market in the US that you will have more reviews there, and your blog will be a huge draw, mine goes out there and it has driven my traffic here on the blog up considerably in the last three years.. Anyway congratulations and looking forward to showcasing it if you wish.

      Liked by 1 person

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