Tagging can be fun!
Lest you think I’ve changed my ways and am ready to hit the local overpasses or old buildings with a can of spray paint, let me assure you this version of tagging is totally legal. All you need is your computer, a desire to help your writer friends, and a minute or two.
In my post 12 Ways to Help Your Friends’ Pre-Release Promotion Efforts, I included tagging books on Amazon as one of the items.
The What of Tagging Books on Amazon
For those unfamiliar with tagging, it involves listing some keywords on a book or other product’s Amazon page. The keywords are terms those browsing Amazon use when searching for a particular product, in this case a book. Amazon offers a tagging primer. I’m going to add to the information found there.
The Why of Tagging Books on Amazon
By adding tags to a book’s page, we increase the likelihood that the book will appear when a potential buyer performs a search of tagged books using one of the keywords, or tags. To perform such a search, a site user clicks a tag while on a product’s page and is taken to that tag’s page. From there, the user can search other tags.
Let me be clear: tagging a book doesn’t mean it will appear higher on an Amazon product list when a buyer types the keyword in the main search bar. Placement on those lists is based on sales–not on keywords, number of likes, or number of tags.
The How of Tagging Books on Amazon
I used Wish You Were Here, a debut novel written by my friend and agency mate Beth Vogt, due to be released on May 1st, as an example of how to go about choosing tags. In order to help Beth promote her book, I added fifteen tags to the book’s page.
Because Wish You Were Here is a contemporary Christian romance, I started with four sets of keywords.
- Christian fiction
- Christian romance
- Contemporary romance
- Contemporary Christian romance
Since many readers are used to the use of the broader term “inspirational” for books with a Christian worldview, I added two tags using that keyword.
- Inspirational romance
- Contemporary inspirational romance
Those tags are general. Because I want potential buyers to get a good feel for Beth’s story if they scan the tags, I added four that are more specific to Wish You Were Here.
- Humorous romance
- Runaway bride story
Eager to do all I can to help Beth, I took tagging a step further. Since Beth is a friend, I emailed her and asked for insider info. I wanted to find out what other elements of the book I could highlight in the tags. Being a generous person, she got right back to me. Based on our correspondence, I came up with five more tags.
- Colorado Springs
- Estes Park
- Llama rescue
- Thomas Mangelsen
At this point, I reached the maximum number of tags Amazon allows one user. Here’s what the tag section of the page for Wish You Were Here looked like when I’d finished.
As you can see, all a person has to do to agree with a tag is click the box in front of it or click “Agree with these tags?” to agree with all those listed. To add additional tags, look for a little box just below this section on a product/book’s page.
By adding tags, I’ve helped Beth’s book appear on fifteen different lists. If I did a good job choosing my tags, I also piqued your interest in Beth’s book. Even without seeing the back cover copy, I have a hunch you’re getting a feel for Beth’s story, which is my goal when I tag an author’s book.
So that I don’t leave you hanging, I’ll add the blurb from the Wish You Were Here Amazon page, where you’ll also find some awesome endorsements and reviews.
Kissing the wrong guy days before her wedding leads Allison to become a runaway bride. But can it also lead to happily ever after?Allison Denman is supposed to get married in five days, but everything is all wrong: the huge wedding, the frothy dress, and the groom.
Still, kissing the groom’s brother in an unguarded moment is decidedly not the right thing to do. How could she have made such a mistake? It seems Allison’s life is nothing but mistakes at this point. And pulling a “Runaway Bride,” complete with “borrowing” her best friend’s car, doesn’t seem to solve her problems.
Can Allison find her way out of this mess? She prefers to be the one in control, and giving it up is not going to be easy. But to find her way again, she will have to believe that God has a plan for her and find the strength to let Him lead.
Wish You Were Here is fun and full of humor—sure to be a pleasure to inspirational romance readers.
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I’d envisioned ending this post with an invitation to a tagging party, with visitors leaving the names of their books so other visitors and I could tag them. However, in doing my research for this post, I learned that Amazon frowns on such endeavors. Tagging isn’t intended to be undertaken in a reciprocal manner.
I will continue to tag books as I visit their pages on Amazon and suggest doing so yourself as a way to help your friends promote their books. I hope this post has shown you the value of tagging books on Amazon and provided some useful tips on how to go about it.
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Have you ever added a tag a book on Amazon or agreed with those already there?
Do you think adding tags to a book on Amazon can help promote sales, or do you think tagging books is a waste time? Why do you hold that view?
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