Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Help! Tracking and Monitoring my Kindle eBook Sales.

Having recently signed up for KDP Select and used 2 of my 'free days', I'm now on the hunt for a better tracking system.  Number of sales per day/hour/minute.  Ranking position, in all available categories.  I need to find a better way.

Please help me learn of better ways to track this data.  It seems the KDP reporting feature is somewhat lacking.  Currently, to track my number of sales and my current ranking, I'm having to quickly wear out my 'Refresh' button.  That doesn't seem right.

How do you track your sales on KDP?
How do you track your ranking position?

Please post in the comments (anyone can comment) the ways you track your sales and rankings in KDP.  I appreciate the help.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

New Marketing Update

I feel like it's time to post an update to the new marketing I'm doing.  As I've posted before, I decided to go exclusive with Amazons KDP Select and try out their service for 90 days.  I 'unpublished' my book from the other platforms and got signed up with KDP Select.

I've been reading about other people's success with this and their use of 'free days' so I decided to start out with 2 free days to really get things going.  And boy did they get moving.  In the first 2 days of being on KDP Select, and with my book listed at $2.99, but on promotion for free, I moved nearly 2500 digital copies. 

On one hand, to see 2500 copies go into the hands of others makes me really excited.  Of course, I didn't make a dime on any of that, but I knew that giving things away for free is a good tactic in marketing. 

As for Amazon rankings,I found my book as high as 138 on all the top free books.  In 'Romance', I climbed to position 38 and in Historical Romance, I hit #9.  These high rankings helped tremendously to get seen and known.  Of course, when the book converted to paid (but still free to Amazon Prime members), it was no longer free so it dropped immediately from the 'Top Free' list.

In fact, when it dropped off the Free List, I found my book ranked all the way down near the 300,000 range.  This didn't make me happy, but my husband encouraged me to be patient and wait to see.  My book converted to paid on Sunday night at midnight (02.26.2012).  Since that time, I'm seeing a 'better than previously' stream of orders.

Over the past 32 hours, I've seen about 20 US downloads and 2 units borrows.  While that doesn't break the bank, it IS better than I've seen before.  I'm also seeing downloads from Amazon UK, DE and FR.

Over the past 32 hours, my book has also climbed back up in the rankings.  I'm sitting at around 23,000 now (much better than 300,000).  The Author Central rank reporting does not provide good data on which to base tracking, but I think I'm bouncing around that 23,000 mark a bit.  I'll continue to watch it.

So, in summary, this new marketing campaign seems to be doing better than I've done in the past and I'm happy about that.  While I'm not yet a millionair for selling books, I CAN say I'm a success because I've sold some books.  :]

Now I'm back off to do some more writing.  Must * Write * More!

Have you seen success using the KDP Select system?

Friday, February 24, 2012

Numbers are Hoppin'!!!

I have been amazed at the numbers with this new marketing campaign!  This morning at 8:11am, I was at 190 books downloaded. Holy Crap!  As the day went on, the numbers kept climbing.  Lunch time it was 345,  dinner time 641, Holy Crap, Holy Crap!!! Just as I am heading to bed I'm about to break 1200, and that is only my Amazon USA, not counting the wonderful people in the UK, DE and the one blessed soul in France!! Thank you, thank you, thank you, my readers!!!

Sometimes as an author you wonder if your book has reached anyone, or if you have fallen into a crack somewhere, and my hope is that with this new Campaign I will reach more readers that will be excited about reading my books.

Please, please, if you have read Sweetwater Springs, post something, anything, tell me what you loved about it, shoot, tell me what you hated about it! Then, post a blurb at the end of the book on Kindle and tell the world. I appreciate every one of you, I know lots of authors say that but I truly mean it. Sweetwater Springs is just like one of my kids; lots of sweat and tears went into it and all moms like hearing how much other people like their kids, so don't be shy, write a review, even if it isn't wonderful, I also love constructive criticism.

Anyway, I need to get to bed, but I look forward seeing the numbers in the morning. Just a quick reminder, the book is free until midnight tomorrow night, that's 12:00 a.m., February 26th. Pick one up and enjoy it today!

Marketing Changes - and Free Books!

I've recently been reading more and more about the Amazon Prime option of KDP Select.  The more I read, the more I'm interested.  While the program is still very new (3 months old?), it seems to have great potential and I'm reading a lot of success stories and reviews on the program.

So I've decided to jump in.  I've made my novel, Sweetwater Springs, available exclusively on Amazon Kindle and enrolled in KDP Select.  Here is some information about the program.

#1 - To be part of Kindle Select, you must offer your digital book via Kindle only.  This means I had to 'unpublish' the book from Barnes and Nobles Nook platform.  : [  This doesn't make me happy because I've been seeing more sales on the Nook than in the other platforms.  But, in an effort to increase my name recognition, to profligate my name and book out there, I've made the difficult decision to remove Sweetwater Springs from Nook, and from Smashwords and go exclusively with Kindle (for now).

#2 - Signup to Kindle Select couldn't be much easier.  Since I already had my book published through their KDP platform, I simply had to click the button and mark the checkbox.  It really was that simple.

#3 - The Kindle Select program is a 90 day contract.  My goal is to use the next 90 days to really offer my book and get noticed more.  I have more books getting ready for publication and name recognition is huge.  90 days seems to be a good starting point to focus on this goal.

#4 - During each 90 period (and they auto-renew you after 90 days unless you 'opt-out'), you get 5 'free days'.  These are promotions you must setup.  You set the price, you set the day it will start, and the day it will end.  The promotion takes effect at midnight (their time) on the day you specify, and similarly, ends at midnight their time on the day you select to end the promotion.

#5 - To get a good start on my marketing in this manner, I setup my first promotion to begin on day 1.  (that's today).  So, at 10:30pm MST last night, my book was enrolled in the KDP select program and at midnight (their time), my book went on promotion.  I decided to offer the book for free for the first two days.  Yes, that means for today and tomorrow, (until midnight tomorrow night), the Sweetwater Springs will be free to anyone who has access to the KDP Select program (Amazon Prime members).  Furthermore, the Select program offers the Borrowing feature, which I'm still learning more about.

#6 - Much to my surprise this morning at 7:00am MST, I had already had 150 'sales'.  And by 'sales', I really mean free downloads, because the book is currently listed for free.  The 'sales' numbers continue to climb and as of right now, 8:30am MST, I'm at over 200 'sales'.  (I'll continue to put quotes around the word 'sales' until I actually start making money.  :] )

And to close this morning, I had done lots of reading about people posting their book's rankings on Kindle.  For the life of me I just couldn't figure out where to get those numbers.  But after significant research, I finally found it.  Amazon Author Central:  There, after registering and logging in, you can see your book(s) and their current rankings.  Since I am still very new to this, I'm still learning and I'll post more as I figure it out.

For now, though - On we go with Kindle Select!  Free book all day today and tomorrow.  Check out Sweetwater Springs, FREE for a limited time, here:

And if you have more insight to the KDP Select program, or comments, please feel free to post below.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Book Giveaway


The '10 Free Books' giveaway has been canceled effective 10:30pm MST 02.23.2012 due to a change in our marketing plan.  Please stay in touch for a notice of our new plan.


In yet another effort to get me moving on my blog, Twitter and Facebook, I've decided to do a giveaway of my Novel "Sweetwater Springs".  (click here to read about it)  The way I figure it is that if I have people contacting me about this, I'll be forced to check-in, update and follow.  So, You have become my inspiration to get back into the cyber-social world.

So, let's get to it.  Today, starting now, I'm giving away 10 copies of my Clean Historical Romance, Sweetwater Springs".  The first 10 posted comments to this thread will get a coupon to Smashwords to download the book.  I will contact you via the email address you have registered on your comments.

I promise to stay up-to-date on this, reply in a reasonable time-frame and provide you with your coupon quickly.  This is my motivation to get me moving again in the digital world.