Most people are surprised to learn that search engines look inside all of the documents and applications they publish on the web for clues about their contents. Almost all applications let you edit the metadata associated with the document, though they might not call it metadata, and editing that metadata can help boost your book discoverability.
I’ve written before about how important I think it is for authors to use Twitter as part of their outreach and social media marketing, both to each other and to readers. At the corporate level, investors are looking for more revenue, while at the user level, the 10-year-old platform remains a busy point of discoverability for writers and beyond. One of the best-hidden and most helpful features, however, is the frequently overlooked Twitter analytics offering.
Achieving book discoverability with readers means making search engines aware of you and your book. You may have heard of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) as being important to your website; that IS book discoverability. Discoverability is your biggest marketing partner as it provides reliable, continuous passive marketing. Successful book discoverability means that your readers can find you simply by entering words that describe your book into a search engine. It’s a disservice to you and your book if you don’t leverage these words for your benefit.
The decision to ask a professional book designer to typeset your book versus typesetting it yourself is driven largely by a limited budget. However, once you realize the astonishing number of details designers must attend to in book layout, you may conclude that it’s best to spend your time marketing your professionally designed book rather than attempting to become a book designer yourself.
If you’re one of the many authors who tried to get traditionally published first, and are now considering or pursuing self-publication instead, then this post is especially for you. Some authors really want that “traditional” experience, but don’t know exactly what it looks like, where the most value lies, or what aspects of it can be feasibly translated over to the publishing process of an independent author. Having been through both experiences myself, here’s what I would give the most thought and consideration to when deciding how to publish a book.
Book metadata and keywords might seem scary, but they’re really only the words and phrases that you use to describe yourself and your book. Your book metadata will consist of basic things such as your title, author name, author bio, book description, publication date, etc. Keywords are one or more words used to indicate the content of your book. Simply put, metadata and keywords are what make your book appear when a reader goes looking for a specific thing, whether that thing is a book or not.
Every November an international phenomenon, spurred on by a love for human creativity, challenges thousands across the globe to try their hand at writing a novel. National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) presents a somewhat untraditional, incredibly exciting, and definitely challenging approach to championing creative writing.
The ISBN is the familiar number on the barcode on the back cover of every book and is a key piece of your book metadata. It is a code assigned to books on an individual basis and every single ISBN is unique. You cannot sell your book through traditional bookstores and retailers without it. Another one of our posts discusses more about what ISBNs do. In this post, however, we’re talking about the importance of tagging your ISBNs to increase your book discoverability.
Design 101 is a book in its own right, not a blog, but to encapsulate its importance in one paragraph...
It’s an unpleasant fact of life: no matter how incredible your book is, if you neglect to do book marketing and gain publicity, few people will read it. Most independent authors are hesitant—or unable—to spend big money on book marketing and publicity. With so many elements at play, it can be impossible to know which specific blog post, article, or interview will yield the best results. Fortunately, there are several free and low-cost ways you can promote your book.