So you’ve got your book up on Amazon and you’ve noticed you have no reviews. But other books have reviews, and some of them have a lot of reviews.
Frustrated? Here are 5 popular tips about how to get more book reviews.
- Don’t worry about it. Reviews don’t necessarily correlate to sales. Some authors have books with low sales but they’ve elicited a high number of reviews. Other authors sell lots of a book but have very few reviews. Depending on your genre, your sales may very well not be dependent on the number of reviews you get.
- But remember that more sales generally lead to more reviews. Focus on getting your sales numbers up, and the reviews will follow. If one out of 100 readers leave a review, then get 1000 readers, etc.
- Hit up the book bloggers. Find the bloggers in your genre, contact them by email, and arrange to send receptive ones a copy of your book to review. This can be time consuming, but it usually does result in more reviews. Check out bookreviewdirectory.com for links to bloggers in your genre.
- Use a service like BookRazor.com. Book Razor scours public email addresses of people who have posted reviews for books like yours. You send Book Razor links to books like yours, they send you back hundreds of contacts (the fee varies based on the number of contacts, and hence reviews, you are shooting for). You send a polite inquiry to these people. A percentage respond favorably and you send them a review copy of your book. In a week or two, hopefully, they post a review.
- Cultivate your review team. Over time, as your mailing list grows, you can send out a request for reviews to your followers in exchange for a free copy of your latest book. This is one of the reasons developing an email list is beneficial. It’s easy to elicit reviews when you have a group of fans to ask.
Here are 5 “don’ts” you should be aware of when following Amazon’s rules:
- Don’t let friends and relatives review your books. This is one of Amazon’s first rules about reviews.
- Don’t do review swaps with other authors. This includes “review clubs” or by making one-on-one arrangements.
- Don’t ever use a pay service to receive reviews. These will have offers like, “Send us some money and we will guarantee you x number of reviews.” Services like BookRazor are different because they send you public email addresses of reviewers in your genre, and it’s up to you to reach out to them. But services that offer to get you reviews directly if you send them money, where you are essentially buying reviews, are verboten.
- Don’t offer to pay or reward anyone for reviewing your book. You can send them a free copy of your book, but it should not be in exchange for the review. It should be in the hope they offer a review. Amazon says, “Book authors and publishers may continue to provide free or discounted copies of their books to readers, as long as the author or publisher does not require a review in exchange or attempt to influence the review.”
- Don’t forget to keep abreast of Amazon’s rules. Here’s their FAQ on reviews for authors.
I just received an absolutely fabulous review from a book blogger that didn’t show up on Amazon. I sent her the book to review. No money exchanged. She sent me the link to the review on Amazon, but it wasn’t in the normal line of reviews at the bottom of the page. This is what she said about it: “I’ve half a mind as well to write them and let them know I see what they are doing–publishing reviews but keeping unverified ones difficult to get to because of their maze.” Gah!!!!