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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yes, I know I'm so out of the loop it isn't funny, but I just heard that our tags are gone.  Does anyone know why Amazon would do that?  How else will our books be found?  I'm confused.  Is there anything we can do in lieu of tags to draw attention..aside from the usual promoting?
 

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Maybe Amazon felt they were being misused and leading readers astray? Dunno. But Mathew is correct in that keywords have always been much more important to discoverability. Tags were not searchable in the general search. Keywords are the, well, key.
 

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I think they probably decided that they were one of those ideas that sounded good when kicked around in the office, and worked terribly when in the wild. Anyone could tag a book anything.

At least with keywords only the author is misleading people. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
LOL.

Thanks Monique and Mathew.  Are keywords putting words in the description of our stories?  Like what one would do on a website?  Maybe I could stick them in with teeny, tiny, little letters that only the computer can see.  ;D
 

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JeanneM said:
LOL.

Thanks Monique and Mathew. Are keywords putting words in the description of our stories? Like what one would do on a website? Maybe I could stick them in with teeny, tiny, little letters that only the computer can see. ;D
The things you put into KDP when uploading your story are your keywords. You get seven of them, separated by commas. (Can be phrases.)
 

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Keywords are the seven terms (separated by commas) we get in a special field while uplaoding to KDP. Those were always what drove the searches, not the tags. Tags were never searchable -- just clickable. But a reader had to already be on a tag list in order to see what had been tagged with that term. Typing a search term never brough up things that had been tagged with that term if the author hadn't chosen that as one of the keywords.

Tags were being abused. I'm not all that sad to see them go.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks everyone.  I don't remember a place for keywords...just tags.  But I've fallen so far behind that I haven't uploaded anything new in a long time.  I'll keep this in mind for next time.  :)

I did notice that some people were posting weird things under tags, so it is probably just as well that they are gone.  Shows how much I check my page...I didn't even know they were gone until I read a post here tonight that mentioned it.  Can you say Space Shot?  LOL
 

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Keywords are put of the uploading process (and can be changed, but only by the author). Tags were done on the product page by...anyone -- the author, the author's friends, readers, or random people on a "tag my book" thread.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I think I must have confused the two as I do remember writing tags..I think we got 15?  I don't remember the keywords...but I'm not quite as sharp as I used to be. Or perhaps I am, which would be quite sad.  ???
 

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Each account holder could add or vote for up to 15 tags on a particular product page, but that didn't mean you were limited to just 15 tags. Some books could have 50 or more tags, assuming that not everyone was just agreeing with the ones already there. But that was done on the product page itself, not in the metadata of the uploading page through KDP.
 

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I just went in and edited my keywords, to be sure they're accurate.  IIRC, I think the book is still available while the title is "in review," correct.
 

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I'm glad they're getting rid of tags. For instance, in the UK store you can see several people added vampire and vampire related words to my books; however, there are not any vampires in my books. I don't have a UK account so I can't add the correct tags.
 

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I'm with a lot of the other folks on here.  Tags were generally confusing to me and I would assume they were confusing to the readers as well.  I'm not going to shed a tear when Amazon finishes burying them.
 

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Amanda Brice said:
Keywords are put of the uploading process (and can be changed, but only by the author). Tags were done on the product page by...anyone -- the author, the author's friends, readers, or random people on a "tag my book" thread.
Or people who didn't like your book.

The accusation that authors put inaccurate tags always baffled me. Why would that benefit the author? But I saw plenty of books inaccurate tagged as erotica, etc. Since they weren't searchable, I came to feel that they didn't do much.

It is worthwhile to look at the keywords and be sure they're the best possible.
 

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JRTomlin said:
Or people who didn't like your book.

The accusation that authors put inaccurate tags always baffled me. Why would that benefit the author? But I saw plenty of books inaccurate tagged as erotica, etc. Since they weren't searchable, I came to feel that they didn't do much.

It is worthwhile to look at the keywords and be sure they're the best possible.
You have any tips on picking the best keywords?
 

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One downside to tags was books being tagged as "overpriced" or similar. This used to happen a lot with trad published books when the e-book price was the same as (or sometimes more) than the paperback. Readers who wanted a digital version were irate and retaliated using tags. It was probably a lot of work for Amazon to go through and clean those up.

For the most part, though, I found them useful, particularly when searching for a specific time period in historical fiction or reference books.

I don't think the tagging parties were a problem so much as the mis-tags or malicious tags that others here have pointed out.
 

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I'm not going to miss the tags.  There were several instances that my books were tagged with words that had nothing to do with the story.
 

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N. Gemini Sasson said:
One downside to tags was books being tagged as "overpriced" or similar. This used to happen a lot with trad published books when the e-book price was the same as (or sometimes more) than the paperback. Readers who wanted a digital version were irate and retaliated using tags. It was probably a lot of work for Amazon to go through and clean those up.

For the most part, though, I found them useful, particularly when searching for a specific time period in historical fiction or reference books.

I don't think the tagging parties were a problem so much as the mis-tags or malicious tags that others here have pointed out.
Their removal may well have more to do with the traditional publishers anger at books being tagged with "boycott" and "overpriced" than anything indie authors ever did. Every indie author I ever saw do tagging wanted correct tags that would just help people find what they were looking for. Some people assume that everything has to do with us. ;)

As far as key words, that can be hard. I try to think of the ones that are the most accurate: for my historical novels I know I used: Scotland, medieval, independence, war, adventure, historical fiction, knight. Whether they are the "best" or not is debatable but they were the best I could think of.
 

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One way to figure out whether a keyword is good (as long as its accurate for your story, of course) is to do a search of a potential one and see what the highest ranking book that pops up with that keyword. If your ranking is higher than that, then you'll have good exposure!  :D Of course, that might also mean it's not a terribly popular search term with readers.

An author friend of mine noticed that with "contemporary romance" as the keyword, her book would appear on roughly Page 20 of the search result, but it would appear on the first page of "beach romance" and on the fourth page of "small town romance." All of those keywords were accurate, but she had better exposure with the latter two. So she added those to her seven tags (swapping out things that weren't quite so relevant) and lo and behold, she started selling better! She doesn't know for certain it was because of the new keywords, but it couldn't hurt.
 
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