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Patty Jansen said:
I'm waiting for the "You are naughty" email.
IF your rank isn't returned in a couple of hours and it's really strip-stripped, the 'naughty' mail won't come for another WEEK. Unless you're proactive. Then they'll send you boilerplate naughtiness in reply.

For those unable to find Patty's book: note that it is wide and permafree, not KU.
 

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Patty Jansen said:
I'm no more special than anyone else.

But. I just want to say this, for those who still suffer from Amazon Stockholm Syndrome: Amazon operations are run by computers. There is no human checking any of this. They feel nothing about you, about me, or anyone else. Please bear that in mind next time you feel anything towards Amazon in terms of loyalty or gratitude. They will NOT return your adoration. They're a big frikken steamrolling company. Use them, but be on your guard.
Sucks this happened, but I think it happens way more than even we on kboards know about (there are tons of authors doing promos with bub that aren't on kboards, so they obvious never report getting deranked here).

The only safe way to play on zon anymore is direct paid. Everything else is a risk, as small or large as it may be.

The algos are clearly set to derank based on massive rank jumps. I know DG said that's not the cause, but I think it is. Too many bubs getting caught up in this crap for it to be a coincidence.
 

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I actually saw your book earlier while checking the free ranking of my AMRC, but yeah, it's gone now. Sorry that happened to you.

I can only imagine waiting years and finally getting a BookBub, paying the big bucks, and then having most of the benefit stripped away. The programmers should have factored in BB ads--it wouldn't be hard. They are shooting themselves in the foot, missing out on the sales that would follow a BB.

Maybe I shouldn't try so hard for a BookBub.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Seneca42 said:
Sucks this happened, but I think it happens way more than even we on kboards know about (there are tons of authors doing promos with bub that aren't on kboards, so they obvious never report getting deranked here).

The only safe way to play on zon anymore is direct paid. Everything else is a risk, as small or large as it may be.

The algos are clearly set to derank based on massive rank jumps. I know DG said that's not the cause, but I think it is. Too many bubs getting caught up in this crap for it to be a coincidence.
Well, yeah, one can be overly alarmist about this, but hey. This book consistently sells better in the UK than the US. I still have my UK rank. This book sells well on Kobo when I promo it. Kobo hasn't reported my freebie downloads yet, and anyway, Kobo seriously downvalues free in their ranking (as in: to the very bottom of the charts). It will come back up once I put the price back up. I expect about 1000 downloads minimum at Kobo. Maybe more, because I've already got 300 from a promo I did with them last week. Sellthrough at Kobo is about 30%. Yes. From a free book.

I also expect about 1500-2000 downloads at Google Play. GP also de-ranks free books to make them invisible. It's all about sellthrough. About 300 people have managed to find this book there already.

I expect about 4-5000 downloads on B&N. The nook store is a mystery to me, but this book does quite well there.

I expect about 8000 downloads on Apple. The iBooks store is a mystery to me, except sellthrough is usually quite good, and this book sells well in mainland Europe and Australia on iBooks.

Point is: on average, about 25% of my sales on all platform are in the US. About half of my sales are on Amazon. So this affects 12.5% of my sales on a book whose sales are heavily skewed away from the US in the first place.

Long story short: there is a vast world beyond Amazon US.
 

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TromboneAl said:
The programmers should have factored in BB ads--it wouldn't be hard. They are shooting themselves in the foot, missing out on the sales that would follow a BB.

Maybe I shouldn't try so hard for a BookBub.
Maybe the programmers have factored in BB :p

But you should still keep going for a BB. 1) Everyone who gets ranked stripped gets their rank back (or most do anyway). 2) It only seems to happen on zon US. 3) You'll still make a ton of money and get a ton of readers, so it's still a no-brainer.

And if you go 99c instead of free, you have nothing to worry about at all.
 
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Wow... that is complete BS. Sorry to see that  :eek:
It's 5:30 central time here (US, Texas) and it's not showing rank or categories under product details as books typically do on .com.
I actually hope it's all incompetence & poorly programmed automation. Better that than Amazon monkeying with things to devalue marketing service competitors to incentivize preferential use of AMS...
 

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Seneca42 said:
Maybe the programmers have factored in BB :p

But you should still keep going for a BB. 1) Everyone who gets ranked stripped gets their rank back (or most do anyway). 2) It only seems to happen on zon US. 3) You'll still make a ton of money and get a ton of readers, so it's still a no-brainer.

And if you go 99c instead of free, you have nothing to worry about at all.
While there have been far fewer instances, we have seen rank stripping on paid books.
 

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Patty Jansen said:
I'm no more special than anyone else.

But. I just want to say this, for those who still suffer from Amazon Stockholm Syndrome: Amazon operations are run by computers. There is no human checking any of this. They feel nothing about you, about me, or anyone else. Please bear that in mind next time you feel anything towards Amazon in terms of loyalty or gratitude. They will NOT return your adoration. They're a big frikken steamrolling company. Use them, but be on your guard.
I'm really sorry this happened to you, but can we please stop insulting those who make the choice to be in Select? I'm not in Select out of any sense of loyalty to Amazon nor am I in it because I'm suffering from Stockholm Syndrome. I was wide for four years. I'm in Select now because I make more money from KU in a month than I made in a year on all the other platforms combined. My decision is purely based on monetary reasons and the fact that the extra income is giving a big boost to my savings.

I don't denigrate you for being wide, you do you. Please show the same courtesy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
TromboneAl said:
I actually saw your book earlier while checking the free ranking of my AMRC, but yeah, it's gone now. Sorry that happened to you.

I can only imagine waiting years and finally getting a BookBub, paying the big bucks, and then having most of the benefit stripped away. The programmers should have factored in BB ads--it wouldn't be hard. They are shooting themselves in the foot, missing out on the sales that would follow a BB.

Maybe I shouldn't try so hard for a BookBub.
Hehe, tbh I actually hope that people do this (tongue-in-cheek-like) because there seriously is no cheaper way on the planet to put your book in front of 30-40k readers than to pay three hundred measly bucks for a Bookbub, and I'll take it, rank-stripping or no.

General-you from here on:

If all you (general you) can see is the ego boost of seeing your book up there (it is a nice boost, I admit) and somehow magically believing that Amazon will market your books because *magic* and *algorithms* and *Amazon* then omg you've got it all wrong. If you give away 30k books and you see a spike in on-sales, that's because of Amazon's algorithms and not because you happened to write a book that people enjoy reading?

Seriously, people give themselves far too little credit. I sell anywhere upwards of 1000 books every month (usually over 2k) and I can tell you almost to the individual sale what I did to make that happen.

So: pay $300 to give away 30k books? I'd do that again tomorrow. And the day after, and the day after that.
 
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PhoenixS said:
At times, Amazon will strip rank for a couple of hours only. Sort of a Tier 1 strip. I've seen it with many BB'd books -- some from trad publishers/mega names too -- including our anchor author's. Many of those books return to the ranks within 2-4 hours of being stripped. So hang tight. Yours may be one of those...
Ugh. This happened to me on a BB freebie run; it came back after a few hours.

But what a son of a mother. I was happy dancing for you when I saw your FB post a little while ago. Good grief, this nonsense is unbelievable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
Perry Constantine said:
I'm really sorry this happened to you, but can we please stop insulting those who make the choice to be in Select? I'm not in Select out of any sense of loyalty to Amazon nor am I in it because I'm suffering from Stockholm Syndrome. I was wide for four years. I'm in Select now because I make more money from KU in a month than I made in a year on all the other platforms combined. My decision is purely based on monetary reasons and the fact that the extra income is giving a big boost to my savings.

I don't denigrate you for being wide, you do you. Please show the same courtesy.
I cannot see where I mentioned Select. I see a lot of Amazon adoration here that is misplaced, regardless of where the writers choose to sell. All I'm saying is: you may love Amazon, but beware, Amazon will not love you back. Just. Beware. Don't let yourself be caught unawares or flattened by the steamroller.

I did not see discourtesy.
 

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Wow, how disheartening. Sorry, Patty. I decided against applying for any more bookbubs after this happened a few weeks ago. Now look, two of us in a week? Bookbub is too expensive, especially since it doesn't do what it used to do now anyway. The last one I did was 26,000 free downloads with a very light follow-through except on the day of the promo. I never did understand that. The next day maybe, but several sales the very same day? Who had time to read the free one and buy more on the same day?
Marti
 

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Perry Constantine said:
I'm really sorry this happened to you, but can we please stop insulting those who make the choice to be in Select? I'm not in Select out of any sense of loyalty to Amazon nor am I in it because I'm suffering from Stockholm Syndrome. I was wide for four years. I'm in Select now because I make more money from KU in a month than I made in a year on all the other platforms combined. My decision is purely based on monetary reasons and the fact that the extra income is giving a big boost to my savings.

I don't denigrate you for being wide, you do you. Please show the same courtesy.
In all honesty fella, I don't see how on earth you took that post as being denigrated. Patty was making a general point about Amazon.
 

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I'm so sorry, Patty! It makes me sick that this is still happening to good authors like you. I was so nervous before my latest BB but it went without a hitch. I've had my ranks *freeze* (not stripped) plenty of times with a BB spike, but this is so much worse.

Did you do any promos beforehand? Before my last BB, I ran a bunch of ads to slowly build the rank - not that anything compares to a BB spike.

I hope your rank returns soon!
 

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PhoenixS said:
At times, Amazon will strip rank for a couple of hours only. Sort of a Tier 1 strip. I've seen it with many BB'd books -- some from trad publishers/mega names too -- including our anchor author's. Many of those books return to the ranks within 2-4 hours of being stripped. So hang tight. Yours may be one of those...
This happened to me too, but on a smaller scale. Incendiary Magic is being listed as a free book on Freebooksy, Booksends, Kindle Nation Daily, Manybooks, Bookgoodies, Bknights, Awesomegang, Free Kindle Books and Tips, and I Love Vampire Novels today, all of which I considered ultra-safe. Midway through the morning, the rank on the book disappeared.

I immediately shot off an email to KDP support listing the exact sites I'd used and explaining that I know these sites operate by sending out emails to newsletter lists only. My rank reappeared in a couple of hours. Not sure if it was because of my email or due to the reason Phoenix listed, but it's worth a shot being the squeaky wheel. My book is now ranked 34 free, so I hope to get some extra downloads from hanging out on the top 100 free for a day or two. You deserve triple that exposure from your Bookbub run!
 

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Luke Everhart said:
Wow... that is complete BS. Sorry to see that :eek:

I actually hope it's all incompetence & poorly programmed automation. Better that than Amazon monkeying with things to devalue marketing service competitors to incentivize preferential use of AMS...
It's happening often. Could it be a stab at BookBub?
 

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Patty Jansen said:
If all you (general you) can see is the ego boost of seeing your book up there (it is a nice boost, I admit) and somehow magically believing that Amazon will market your books because *magic* and *algorithms* and *Amazon* then omg you've got it all wrong. If you give away 30k books and you see a spike in on-sales, that's because of Amazon's algorithms and not because you happened to write a book that people enjoy reading?

Seriously, people give themselves far too little credit. I sell anywhere upwards of 1000 books every month (usually over 2k) and I can tell you almost to the individual sale what I did to make that happen.
Who ever equated algorithms with magic? Companies spend serious money creating and tweaking their algorithms. Interestingly, I too can pinpoint cause-and-algo-effect for our 1.5M+ sales (and I've managed promos for trad-pubbed, award-winning USAT and NYT authors who've written beloved books that have stood the test of time). The same algos that track rank drive current and future visibility. Generic-you can optimize the algo-effect with a great cover, a hooky blurb and a solid story -- of course. Just as algos can optimize word-of-mouth for a good book. One doesn't preclude the other, however; they can work together or individually.

But magic? No. Who's thinking that? Amazon (as well as Nook, iBooks, Google Play and Kobo, btw, just to a lesser extent) *does* market books via its algos. That's demonstrable and replicable. I'm a bit surprised a SF writer doesn't appreciate the science behind marketing and sales.
 

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Perry Constantine said:
I don't denigrate you for being wide, you do you. Please show the same courtesy.
Let's put aside I don't think anyone is denigrating anyone :)

That said, just on point of fact, the two camps are not equal in terms of industry impact. KU authors are commodifying (ie. driving down margins) for the industry as a whole. Wide authors are not (although I guess one could argue that the permafree authors are; but realistically they are only permafreeing one or two books max, so their impact is negligible).

I 100% agree that everyone should do what is best for them. But at the same time, if in doing so you (and others) are contributing to the erosion and instability of the industry, driving down pricing power for authors in the aggregate, empowering zon to become a monopolistic powerhouse, etc. - you should at least understand those who have an issue with that (not with YOU, but with the general trend of kowtowing to zon)... even if, and though, they nonetheless respect your right to do whatever you feel like (and most probably understand why authors feel they have no choice but to play the game the way zon tells them to).
 

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Patty Jansen said:
you may love Amazon, but beware, Amazon will not love you back. Just. Beware. Don't let yourself be caught unawares or flattened by the steamroller.
I see a lot of people who are sure Amazon hates them, personally, but I don't think I've ever seen anyone claim Amazon loves them. Like, ever.

If their book is doing well on Amazon, it's because it's an amazing book! If it's doing poorly, clearly it is spite.

I think you're issuing a warning people that don't exist, to be honest. I don't see many people equating book sales to emotional relationships with the vendor, but I do see a lot of people assessing where they earn the most and considering if being exclusive is their most profitable option. Even if it is, I don't think they expect Amazon to send love notes.
 

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Seneca42 said:
Let's put aside I don't think anyone is denigrating anyone :)
And then goes on to tell us that KU authors are causing erosion and instability to the entire industry.

Seneca42 said:
I 100% agree that everyone should do what is best for them. But at the same time, if in doing so you (and others) are contributing to the erosion and instability of the industry, driving down pricing power for authors in the aggregate, empowering zon to become a monopolistic powerhouse, etc. - you should at least understand those who have an issue with that (not with YOU, but with the general trend of kowtowing to zon)... even if, and though, they nonetheless respect your right to do whatever you feel like (and most probably understand why authors feel they have no choice but to play the game the way zon tells them to).
den-i-grate
ˈdenəˌɡrāt/
verb
criticize unfairly; disparage.
 
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