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ireaderreview said:
Volume is important.

However, rating is far more important.

We run a lot of books in both free and paid and 4 stars is a Psychological barrier for a lot of readers.

I know a lot of authors get upset if a promo site won't take their 3.8 stars rated book. However, it's because past experience has shown most promo sites that readers respond very strongly to reviews.

Ideal: 4.5+ stars rating and 100+ reviews. More the better.

Good: 4+ stars rating and 10+ reviews.

OK, might still do well: 4.5+ stars rating and <10 reviews.

Won't do well: No reviews
Won't do well: Reviews less than 4.

If you're close to 4 stars then you should be super careful about who you ask to review your book, and I'd even recommend avoiding free book promotions. As mentioned earlier those reviewers sometimes get books they arne't really interested in and then give harsh reviews.
It's fascinating to see book promotion from the other side. Many things can be deduced by studying the acceptance guidelines of the various sites, but it's not the same as this - thanks for sharing.

A question, though.

Do you see subscribers to book promotion sites as representative of buyers as a whole? Or do you think they're a (very large) subgroup with their own buying habits?

For instance, I see a typical subscriber (this is a generalization only) as someone who probably subscribes to multiple promotion sites. What they want are free or cheap books so they can discover new authors. They select something from their daily lists and give it a go. What they don't want to do (at least on a regular basis) is spend a lot of time scouring through Amazon trying to find something they like.

If this is correct, their decision making process at the buying point might be different. Most promotional sites offer a snapshot - that is the cover, a selling sentence rather than the whole blurb, and a review summary (something like "4 star average on Goodreads," or "100 5 star reviews on Amazon"). This gives the prospective buyer a summary of things, and given that at the price it's likely an impulse buy, that's probably all they want.

The effect of reviews (number and quality) on an Amazon browser not looking for a quick and discount buy might be different. For instance, the importance of cover and reviews might recede and the impact of the blurb and look inside feature rise. And they may spend more time studying the actual reviews and picking out a few of the balanced ones to go on rather than just a summarized total.
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