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Author Topic: A New AMS Thread  (Read 62582 times)  

Offline Simon Haynes

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #775 on: May 05, 2018, 12:12:04 PM »
I watched a paperback sale disappear from one of my new AMS ads the other day. It was a 6.99 sale, easy to spot because my report-processing software showed -6.99 against that same ad the next day. That sale was still missing this morning, then appeared again this afternoon.

It's happened with smaller amounts too - maybe they have different servers or databases processing figures, and which figures you get depends which one is serving them up to your browser at the time?


Also yWriter novel writing software & SalesScanner, a free KDP/Google/Smashwords/Createspace sales analyser for PC.

Offline rikatz

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #776 on: May 06, 2018, 11:15:20 AM »
My most recent novel came out on 5/1. That afternoon, I put up a SP ad with about 500 keywords, bids between 25-40 cents. I put up 2 more the next day, same bids, each another 500 keywords. Each ad was approved after 2 full days, which is longer than ever before but much, much worse than the long approval time, all 3 ads are completely dead, just dashes (not even 0's) where impressions and clicks should be. Amazon usually supports new books with at least a few days of excellent impressions, but I've never had a SP ad, let alone 3, show absolutely nothing. The first ad is now on its 3rd day, with no response at all. Has this happened to anybody else?


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Offline khotisarque

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #777 on: May 06, 2018, 11:26:44 AM »
My most recent novel came out on 5/1. That afternoon, I put up a SP ad with about 500 keywords, bids between 25-40 cents. I put up 2 more the next day, same bids, each another 500 keywords. Each ad was approved after 2 full days, which is longer than ever before but much, much worse than the long approval time, all 3 ads are completely dead, just dashes (not even 0's) where impressions and clicks should be. Amazon usually supports new books with at least a few days of excellent impressions, but I've never had a SP ad, let alone 3, show absolutely nothing. The first ad is now on its 3rd day, with no response at all. Has this happened to anybody else?
[/quote

You have to understand the algorithm, which works like this:

Round about the couldron go:
In the poisones entrails throw.
Toad,that under cold stone
Days and nights has thirty-one
Sweated venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first in the charmed pot.
Double,double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the cauldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt and toe of frog,
Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
Adder's fork and blindworm's sting,
Lizard's leg and howlet's wing.
For charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.
Double,double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and couldron bubble.

Scale of dragon,tooth of wolf,
Witch's mummy, maw and gulf
Of the ravin'd salt-sea shark,
Root of hemlock digg'd in the dark,
Liver of blaspheming Jew;
Gall of goat; andslips of yew
silver'd in the moon's eclipse;
Nose of Turk, and Tartar's lips;
Finger of birth-strangled babe
Ditch-deliver'd by the drab,-
Make the gruel thick and slab:
Add thereto a tiger's chaudron,
For ingrediants of our cauldron.
Double,double toil and trouble,
Fire burn and cauldron bubble.

 ;D
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Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #778 on: May 06, 2018, 12:05:40 PM »
My most recent novel came out on 5/1. That afternoon, I put up a SP ad with about 500 keywords, bids between 25-40 cents. I put up 2 more the next day, same bids, each another 500 keywords. Each ad was approved after 2 full days, which is longer than ever before but much, much worse than the long approval time, all 3 ads are completely dead, just dashes (not even 0's) where impressions and clicks should be. Amazon usually supports new books with at least a few days of excellent impressions, but I've never had a SP ad, let alone 3, show absolutely nothing. The first ad is now on its 3rd day, with no response at all. Has this happened to anybody else?

Since they're not running, you have nothing to lose. Try pausing two of the ads and see if that gets the third one running. Or up your bids. If that doesn't work it sounds like AMS has been glitchy on new ads this week. Might try shutting those down and resubmitting.


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Offline rikatz

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #779 on: May 06, 2018, 03:03:37 PM »
Since they're not running, you have nothing to lose. Try pausing two of the ads and see if that gets the third one running. Or up your bids. If that doesn't work it sounds like AMS has been glitchy on new ads this week. Might try shutting those down and resubmitting.

Cassie, thanks. I had hoped that doing the second and third might be enough to get the first one running, but nope. I'll give it a day or two and wait to see what Amazon has to say. My bids are already pretty high (25-40 cents). I don't think that could be the reason that these ads are dead on arrival. Shutting them down and re-submitting is something that I had not thought of but I'll try it if I can't get them to run in another couple of days.


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Offline LilyBLily

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #780 on: May 10, 2018, 10:06:03 PM »
It finally happened. Unless my math is wrong, or my regular Amazon dashboard is not recording recent sales, the cost of my AMS ads so far in May is greater than the income from sales. That'll teach me to respond to those "Your campaign(s) have reached" notices by upping the daily budget. I usually get the notices in the middle of the evening, but it has finally sunk in that upping the budget does not usually result in more sales that day--but it does result in Amazon finding ways to spend more of my budget.

So, that's the first thing that I'm going to stop doing. The second, already implemented, is to reduce the daily budget on my most expensive (and hitherto profitable) ad. This may seem like a mistake--I readily acknowledge that it may BE a mistake, given that AMS ads act in bizarre ways and could stall completely--but the only reason I've been pouring a fortune into these ads is that they've been profitable. I can't see any reason to do unprofitable ads for books that aren't being launched or on special sale or have many more in a series for the reader to buy.

My ad spend has reached the limit of its effectiveness on Amazon, apparently. I was hoping I could scale up, but nope. I note that across the board, the average CPC for all my ads has risen, too. Not a great sign. 

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #781 on: May 11, 2018, 04:28:37 AM »
It finally happened. Unless my math is wrong, or my regular Amazon dashboard is not recording recent sales, the cost of my AMS ads so far in May is greater than the income from sales.

Sorry to hear this. I pulled out of AMS a couple of months ago because I hit the same wall. I planned to test the AMS pool soon, but I keep hearing more and more of the same stories. I'm sure it's not the same for everyone, but it seems that AMS has dried up for too many. I'll keep my focus on other channels for now - at least until the almighty algos make a favorable shift.
 

Offline Kay7979

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #782 on: May 11, 2018, 05:40:27 AM »
I've never made money with AMS ads, but fool that I am, I continue to use them. Even on days when I don't see sales, I often see two to four rank drops on Beyond the Forest, so I'm getting KU borrows, and readers typically work their way through the trilogy. Now I have book one out in a spinoff series, and I was hoping AMS might be useful for Wards and Wonders. Otherwise, I'm depending solely on follow-through reads. But alas, it's not looking good. At the moment, I have 11,609 impressions and 16 clicks but no sales. Any idea what I'm doing wrong?

Offline LilyBLily

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #783 on: May 11, 2018, 06:40:41 AM »
I've never made money with AMS ads, but fool that I am, I continue to use them. Even on days when I don't see sales, I often see two to four rank drops on Beyond the Forest, so I'm getting KU borrows, and readers typically work their way through the trilogy. Now I have book one out in a spinoff series, and I was hoping AMS might be useful for Wards and Wonders. Otherwise, I'm depending solely on follow-through reads. But alas, it's not looking good. At the moment, I have 11,609 impressions and 16 clicks but no sales. Any idea what I'm doing wrong?

It's a decent click ratio, but when they get to the book, it's not what they thought it was. That's my conclusion. This can happen if the keyword is too broad or too out there. Look carefully at which keywords have produced the clicks.

Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #784 on: May 11, 2018, 06:55:21 AM »
I've never made money with AMS ads, but fool that I am, I continue to use them. Even on days when I don't see sales, I often see two to four rank drops on Beyond the Forest, so I'm getting KU borrows, and readers typically work their way through the trilogy. Now I have book one out in a spinoff series, and I was hoping AMS might be useful for Wards and Wonders. Otherwise, I'm depending solely on follow-through reads. But alas, it's not looking good. At the moment, I have 11,609 impressions and 16 clicks but no sales. Any idea what I'm doing wrong?

The book's in KU and it's a fantasy title. So I wouldn't worry about no sales until about 25 clicks. But as LilyBLily says above, if you want a better click:buy ratio than that then look at possibly tightening your keywords.


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Offline It's A Mystery

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #785 on: May 11, 2018, 09:31:23 AM »
I think AMS results must be related to genre because my results don't seem to match anyone's in this thread. Then again, that doesn't make sense because as far as I can tell I'm in a competitive area (mystery).

Here are some of the ways my experience has differed...

1. I have never reached any of my daily limits or even been close to that. So now I set them all to $8 a day regardless
2. I have always had a very good ACOS (apart from 2 ads I cancelled), generally around 30% on all of my ads (and I'm in KU so page reads are on top of that)
3. I only bid low across the board and it seems to work

This is just using author names by the way.

I've also noticed that even if I add say ten ads that don't get any clicks, my sales rachet up a notch again regardless.

It's all slightly odd and mysterious, but I am mystified when I here of people spending thousands a day as I just don't see how that's possible!

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #786 on: May 14, 2018, 01:49:25 PM »
Well, after I paused my one ad that was performing decently and then restarted it again, the ad seems to be dying on the vine.  Guess I should pause it to put it out of my misery.

Maybe I should copy all the more successful keywords and launch another ad, to start fresh.    >:(
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Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #787 on: May 14, 2018, 02:05:35 PM »
Well, after I paused my one ad that was performing decently and then restarted it again, the ad seems to be dying on the vine.  Guess I should pause it to put it out of my misery.

Maybe I should copy all the more successful keywords and launch another ad, to start fresh.    >:(

Or just copy the ad and don't change anything. I had something similar happen when I updated my paperbacks of a few titles. Decided to pause the ads while the books were being re-approved, turned the ads back on and one just didn't pick back up. I copied it exactly and started it over and that new one ran okay. (Higher CPC because the other ad had been running for eight months and had a large amount of sales credited to it.)


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Offline Kay7979

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #788 on: May 14, 2018, 02:51:22 PM »
The book's in KU and it's a fantasy title. So I wouldn't worry about no sales until about 25 clicks. But as LilyBLily says above, if you want a better click:buy ratio than that then look at possibly tightening your keywords.

25 clicks would cost about $8.25 on a book with a royalty of $2.70.

Offline Max 007

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #789 on: May 14, 2018, 07:24:40 PM »
25 clicks would cost about $8.25 on a book with a royalty of $2.70.
Funny ... .  :P  new age math ... increase the bid ...  :D

Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #790 on: May 14, 2018, 07:38:40 PM »
25 clicks would cost about $8.25 on a book with a royalty of $2.70.

But the key is that the book is in KU so there are borrows and page reads occurring instead of sales. So it's not just $2.70. Is it enough to pay for the clicks? That's down to the particular book and its borrow ratio and readthrough.


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Offline weigle1234

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #791 on: May 22, 2018, 06:16:10 PM »
Heres the scoop on Amazon limiting us to 10 categories.

Providing you let Amazon handle everything, theyre happy.  If you sell via Kindle and/or CrateSpace no problem, youll get your 10 categories (maybe even more - one of my eBooks carries 13).  But, of course, expect the usual Amazon confusion and hassles along the way.

If youre like me, and self-publish (and do your own printing, shipping, etc.) its a different story.  Basically, they want a bigger cut of the action.  Which is what Ive suspected all along.

For me to get my 10 categories, I have to enroll in their Advantage program - where they get a 55% cut (but, they store my paperbacks in inventory and covering shipping).  They also charge me an Annual fee of $99.  Its a sweet deal - for Amazon.

With my self-publishing set-up, Amazon gets a 36% cut, as detailed in the following paragraph (which I posted a few days ago):

Amazon charges customers $13.48 for my Solar Wizard book (of which $3.99 is for postage) (my price is set at $6.39), gives me $8.67 - theyre left with $4.81 - a 35.7% cut (4.81 / 13.48) - which seems reasonable to me.  In short, if it were not for their postage charge of $3.99, which they factor into their pay-out equation, they would be sending me a lot less than $8.67.

Why Amazon cant be upfront about all this is upsetting.  Seller Support sends me a barrage of emails with B.S. about limiting categories to just one, and implying that they will Auto-resolve the category issue (whatever that means) if I dont respond within 48 hours.

Some way to run a business!

Offline weigle1234

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #792 on: May 22, 2018, 07:04:56 PM »
Following is a direct quote from a Seller Support email of May 20.  What I find especially amusing is the Although hard to believe, after . part.  Actually, it wasnt hard at all - I never did believe a word of it.

I love the multiple nodes intertwines. crap.  Where do they come up with this B.S.?  Talk about creative writing!  They must mistake us all for Idiots!

But not to worry.  All I need do is enroll in the Advantage Program, and the 10 Categories dilemma will magically disappear!

Although hard to believe, after extensive research they have found that actually having multiple nodes intertwines the search-ability within the system and caused cross conflict of category information for an item resulting in a sales decline. Please note, we do not use node paths any longer to change the category for products in Amazon.com.

Existing ASINs that already have 2 or more nodes assigned to them may remain however any addition or attempts to add will reduce it to one and new ASINs in the catalog are prohibited to have more than 1.

Offline Rising Sun

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #793 on: May 22, 2018, 07:36:42 PM »
Has anyone seen software that can (preferably easily) be used to download lists from Goodreads and/or yasiv.com???
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Offline LilyBLily

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #794 on: May 22, 2018, 10:01:06 PM »
Following is a direct quote from a Seller Support email of May 20.  What I find especially amusing is the Although hard to believe, after . part.  Actually, it wasnt hard at all - I never did believe a word of it.

I love the multiple nodes intertwines. crap.  Where do they come up with this B.S.?  Talk about creative writing!  They must mistake us all for Idiots!

But not to worry.  All I need do is enroll in the Advantage Program, and the 10 Categories dilemma will magically disappear!

Although hard to believe, after extensive research they have found that actually having multiple nodes intertwines the search-ability within the system and caused cross conflict of category information for an item resulting in a sales decline. Please note, we do not use node paths any longer to change the category for products in Amazon.com.

Existing ASINs that already have 2 or more nodes assigned to them may remain however any addition or attempts to add will reduce it to one and new ASINs in the catalog are prohibited to have more than 1.

This is baffling since I've just seen a couple of women's fiction novels with "#1 in..." banners on their page listing totally obscure subcategories. I even copied one down: "#1 in Healthy Relationships." (According to the 1-stars reviews I read about that book, not so healthy.) I simply don't have enough brain power to spare to figure out how to weasel my own women's fiction novels into such odd categories just so I can have a "#1" banner.

I am happy to report that I did a careful analysis of my AMS ads costs vs. my sales/reads, and I am not losing money after all. But the ads costs are way too high, and Amazon clearly did leap on my attempt to scale up one ad. It spent a ton of my presumed future budget in a hurry instead of spending only up to my new maximum--with no resulting sales. After I quickly scaled back that ad, Amazon gave me an overdelivery credit. Now I just ignore the emails about my budget being spent for the day. It doesn't appear that my audience buys books after 9 p.m. EDT, anyway. My stats also suggest that maybe this book doesn't sell well on the west coast, so no need to boost the budget

I did find that one of my ads was in negative territory. This is the one that had done well for over a year and I unwisely paused it briefly; it has never been the same since. My attempt to goose it with a BB CPC ad was a failure, so I've cut the budget on the ad and will eventually try a new angle for that title. But not tonight.   

Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #795 on: May 23, 2018, 11:47:10 AM »
Has anyone seen software that can (preferably easily) be used to download lists from Goodreads and/or yasiv.com???

You might want to start a new thread and ask this question so those who don't come here can see it, too. I'd love a little tool that mines my book's also boughts for me...


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Offline brianna515

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #796 on: May 23, 2018, 12:43:39 PM »
You might want to start a new thread and ask this question so those who don't come here can see it, too. I'd love a little tool that mines my book's also boughts for me...

Rising Sun: You can use a tool called import.io. I explain in this guide I created: https://authorstech.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/AMS-Keywords-Playbook-Final.pdf

Cassie: KDP Rocket scrapes your also-boughts...

Offline weigle1234

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #797 on: May 23, 2018, 02:25:51 PM »

 My stats also suggest that maybe this book doesn't sell well on the west coast, so no need to boost the budget


I wouldn't write off the west coast folks - at least not those from California.  To test new mailing lists, during my many mail order years, I usually did limited test mailings to Californians.  My philosophy always was "If Californians won't buy my books, nobody will."

Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #798 on: May 23, 2018, 02:47:55 PM »
Cassie: KDP Rocket scrapes your also-boughts...

Ah, good to know.


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Offline Rising Sun

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Re: A New AMS Thread
« Reply #799 on: May 24, 2018, 08:13:32 PM »
Rising Sun: You can use a tool called import.io. I explain in this guide I created: https://authorstech.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/AMS-Keywords-Playbook-Final.pdf

Cassie: KDP Rocket scrapes your also-boughts...

Thanks so much for your guide. i purchased the KDSpy and am using it for Amazon category bestseller lists. Easy to use and efficient.

I downloaded the import.io. software but it seems over my head... I an hoping for something turnkey but maybe I am not seeing the import.io. program clearly
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