Kindle Forum banner

1 - 20 of 67 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,406 Posts
It's very easy if you have fans and/or a street team--a mailing list of advanced readers who will read and review asap.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
626 Posts
It's doable if you are established with a long email or subscriber list. I've got 850 on a pen name list and it gets 100 orders and 15 reviews quick. Doesn't make me rich, but if I had 10,000 - I assume I'd get close to 200 reviews, although they might not all be "glowing,"  ;D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
62 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
oh I agree it can be done with big enough ARC and subscriber lists. I just find it telling when there's literally like hundreds of 5-star reviews and maybe like two or three 4-star reviews. It's also suspect when many of those positive reviews seem like broken English and use like "!!!" after sentences lol

I've heard of so-called review mills, so I get skeptical when I see stuff like that
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,851 Posts
Grimus said:
Yeah.. you can buy reviews..
You can - and get your kdp account banned when Amazon find out.

OP, you need report the ones you think dodgy to Amazon. If they agree, they will remove them. I agree that if they look dodgy, walk and talk dodgy, they probably are dodgy.

I saw one once on a badly written 5 page pamphlet which simply said 'amazing' - yeah, what's amazing is that it ever saw the light of day.

I don't tend to read reviews much when I'm buying a book. I've bought too many that were supposed to be wonderful and bored me to death after the first chapter. But, I don't find a lot of five star reviews in themselves to be fake looking. I have a lot of five star reviews myself and I can assure you they are all genuine.

Of course, now that Amazon allow just a rating with no review, they could have come from anybody's Uncle Fred who doesn't speak a word of English, or read it, but have spent their required $50.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,147 Posts
Eccentrik said:
oh I agree it can be done with big enough ARC and subscriber lists. I just find it telling when there's literally like hundreds of 5-star reviews and maybe like two or three 4-star reviews. It's also suspect when many of those positive reviews seem like broken English and use like "!!!" after sentences lol

I've heard of so-called review mills, so I get skeptical when I see stuff like that
If the book itself looks like something easy to copy / paste / etc., like some self help, cooking, and other books I've seen in the past, it's possible it's some sort of nefarious tactics going on. When I first looked into the click farm phenomenon (probably after hearing about it here on KB), these sorts of books were famous for having a whole slug of strangely worded, gushing and glowing reviews. Someone would apparently copy and paste a book quickly, and their click farm would pour on the reviews, and maybe they got enough sales to justify the expense.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
677 Posts
Okay, y'all. Calm down. Lolz.

It is completely possible for a long established writer with a huge fanbase via mailing list and ARC team to have this many reviews shortly after launch, particularly in hot genres like UF, Romance, and Sci Fi. They probably have a high Kindle ranking to go along with it.

It doesn't mean it's a scam, even if their readers use lots of "!!!" and aren't very eloquent. Fans are readers not writers.

A lot of writers spend years building their lists and fanbases and cultivating ARC teams, and this is the result.

Unless a book is obviously a scam and all the reviews are worded or similarly suspect, don't worry about it.  I mean, if you keep writing and publishing and building your platform, you might be the one getting 200 reviews in ten days.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,455 Posts
Ilona Andrews released Blood Heir as a self-published title on January 12, 2021. It has 3,662 ratings on Amazon so far with a 4.8 average. Sometimes authors have rabid fans that support their work.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
62 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the responses yall!

Just out of curiosity, what do you consider the best ways to build your subscriber list? Obviously organic signups through book links will probably bring the most engaged readers, but are there any email list builder websites that are a cut above the rest?

And also, any stats on conversions? I tried looking, but couldn't find consistent numbers. For instance, what is the average percentage of readers who convert to subscribers through organic signups (links in front and back of your book)? What's a good conversion rate?

Sorry for the lack of knowledge, newb here  8)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
164 Posts
I just want to let you all know that there is a huge reviewer purge currently taking place at Amazon. And all the reasons posted above is why is happening.

This is a link to the Top Reviewers:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-reviews/top-reviewers

Those who have zero reviews and zero positive votes in their profiles are purged. You would need to check each page individually to see. There was a purgebot tracking these purges, but it's not working, so we have to look it up manually if we want to know. Page after page, about every fifty reviewers, one it's gone. And we only have access to the top 10,000, when they are millions of Amazon reviewers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,279 Posts
CassieL said:
Ilona Andrews released Blood Heir as a self-published title on January 12, 2021. It has 3,662 ratings on Amazon so far with a 4.8 average. Sometimes authors have rabid fans that support their work.
That doesn't sound possible. Even if I assume a very generous review rate of 1%, she'd have to sell 300k copies on Amazon in twelve days. Less, because it takes a few days for reviews to show up.

Amazon does allow reviewless ratings in some regions, so that could get the number up. I'm not sure why of those things are English speaking, but for the sake of argument...

There are many authors in my who sell well but some are clearly doing something to gas their reviews. There's no reason why one author would organically have 4-5 times the reviews of others who sell the same and have similarly sizes fanbased.

There is a lot of gaming of reviews, not even counting arcs. So it's not unreasonable to be suspicious. But there is little you can do about it, so I wouldn't worry about it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
626 Posts
Simply_Me said:
I just want to let you all know that there is a huge reviewer purge currently taking place at Amazon. And all the reasons posted above is why is happening.

This is a link to the Top Reviewers:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-reviews/top-reviewers

Those who have zero reviews and zero positive votes in their profiles are purged. You would need to check each page individually to see. There was a purgebot tracking these purges, but it's not working, so we have to look it up manually if we want to know. Page after page, about every fifty reviewers, one it's gone. And we only have access to the top 10,000, when they are millions of Amazon reviewers.
Pretty interesting to see several reviewers with thousands of reviews suddenly have zero. Of course one of the most prolific reviewers has 24,500 reviews - that's just crazy. And, every one I saw was five stars. That's not a reviewer - their input is useless if every one is five stars. Making people famous for doing reviews might have made sense in 2001, but right now I find it ludacris.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
62 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Crystal_ said:
That doesn't sound possible. Even if I assume a very generous review rate of 1%, she'd have to sell 300k copies on Amazon in twelve days. Less, because it takes a few days for reviews to show up.

Amazon does allow reviewless ratings in some regions, so that could get the number up. I'm not sure why of those things are English speaking, but for the sake of argument...

There are many authors in my who sell well but some are clearly doing something to gas their reviews. There's no reason why one author would organically have 4-5 times the reviews of others who sell the same and have similarly sizes fanbased.

There is a lot of gaming of reviews, not even counting arcs. So it's not unreasonable to be suspicious. But there is little you can do about it, so I wouldn't worry about it.
there's funny business going on for sure. I don't know about this author in particular, but one would have to be naive to not accept the 'gaming of the system' for reviews.

I see a lotta ppl post on these boards about not worrying about reviews, focus on sales. But sales come with reviews do they not? All other things equal (or similar) a book with significantly more reviews will have more 'social proof' and not just trigger that psychology in potential buyers but probly also get pushed up by the algorithm, right? We're social creatures, we tend to do what others are doing, like what others like, look for approval from others, think or feel how many others are thinking - no?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
94 Posts
Maybe the author had already worked on generating expectations (hype) months before publication...

Or maybe he just made a review fraud...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
If you check out the negative reviews, you'll sometimes find complaints from readers who claim they were bullied by the author's "fans" or "street team" for leaving a negative review or that they had to repeatedly post their review because it kept getting reported. You'll also sometimes see complaints from readers who claim that were kicked off the ARC team for leaving a negative review.

I'm by no means saying all authors who use street teams or send out lots of ARCs do this, and the author might not even be involved in what their rabid fans are doing, but this is yet another reason why readers tend to gravitate toward looking at the negative reviews.


 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,147 Posts
Eccentrik said:
there's funny business going on for sure. I don't know about this author in particular, but one would have to be naive to not accept the 'gaming of the system' for reviews.

I see a lotta ppl post on these boards about not worrying about reviews, focus on sales. But sales come with reviews do they not? All other things equal (or similar) a book with significantly more reviews will have more 'social proof' and not just trigger that psychology in potential buyers but probly also get pushed up by the algorithm, right? We're social creatures, we tend to do what others are doing, like what others like, look for approval from others, think or feel how many others are thinking - no?
Yeah, but you can get a lot of sales without reviews. A lot of readers may like (or even love) a book and not bother to review, or even star it.

An example: A book I read fairly quickly last year, and found very insightful and a very good read, and even recommended to a couple other people, I never reviewed, never starred. I read it and then moved on to something else in my Kindle.

I'm not trying to imply that the way I do things is the way every other reader does, just giving at least one instance where it happens. I think with all the books I've read that I've purchased at Amazon, I've only reviewed one. I'm not a voracious reader, mind you, but I do buy books -- and other items.

Your point about lots of (honest and real looking) positive reviews influencing people to purchase, or at least look over the LookInside, probably has some merit, though.... that's true. People are social animals. But people also often move on after reading something. YMMV.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
It's easy to release a book and have a bunch of five star reviews if you have a decent ARC team. The book doesn't need to be great, it just has to be "good enough." Sometimes those reviewers are just happy they got a free book.

That's why it's usually a bad idea to make purchases on Amazon based on 5-star book reviews. I only read the 3 star or below reviews. If you see a ton of reviewers bashing the 5-star reviews that's also when you know something weird is going on.

CassieL said:
Ilona Andrews released Blood Heir as a self-published title on January 12, 2021. It has 3,662 ratings on Amazon so far with a 4.8 average. Sometimes authors have rabid fans that support their work.
Ilona Andrews is an example of a legitimately popular author who happens to have rabid fans.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,455 Posts
Crystal_ said:
That doesn't sound possible. Even if I assume a very generous review rate of 1%, she'd have to sell 300k copies on Amazon in twelve days. Less, because it takes a few days for reviews to show up.

Amazon does allow reviewless ratings in some regions, so that could get the number up. I'm not sure why of those things are English speaking, but for the sake of argument...

There are many authors in my who sell well but some are clearly doing something to gas their reviews. There's no reason why one author would organically have 4-5 times the reviews of others who sell the same and have similarly sizes fanbased.

There is a lot of gaming of reviews, not even counting arcs. So it's not unreasonable to be suspicious. But there is little you can do about it, so I wouldn't worry about it.
Wow. That's a bold claim to make against Ilona Andrews who in all the years I've been watching them have never shown the least signs of being shady. (Unlike others...)

To clarify my error, that was ratings, the number of global reviews is currently in the 700s.

The series this book is related to is normally a trade-published series that's been highly successful. I know they did use NetGalley for advanced reviews like trade publishing normally does. I don't know total sales numbers but they did state that it sold more in the first week of release than the last book in the prior series sold in its first month of release and it made #5 on the New York Times Bestseller list the first week of release and looks to be #2 on USA Today right now. They also have one of the most enthusiastic fan bases I've seen. But, hey, you know, it's Kboards so let the mud-slinging ensue...Sorry to have tried to provide a counter-example to the OP and brought a well-respected author in for shade instead.
 
1 - 20 of 67 Posts
Top