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Permlink Replies: 12 - Pages: 1 - Last Post: Sep 21, 2013 6:57 PM Last Post By: J. Fields
J. Fields

Posts: 5
Registered: 09/17/13
Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 5:41 AM
 
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Hi all,
This is my first time publishing a book. I've only sold 5 copies since last Saturday. Can any of you look at my book and give me some feedback as to why you think that is?

I don't know much about marketing. Any advice?

Thanks much.

http://www.amazon.com/First-Peter-ebook/dp/B00F7P6R82/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1379766665&sr=1-1&keywords=first+peter

P.S.
I just changed the price to .99. Maybe that will make a difference. (May take a few hours to show the .99 price)

_____________________________________________

Visit:

http://510pictures.com/Blog/
*************************
http://www.510pictures.com/

Edited by: J. Fields on Sep 21, 2013 6:45 AM
sloppydog

Posts: 827
Registered: 12/14/11
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 6:38 AM   in response to: J. Fields in response to: J. Fields
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I'm not sure what your question is. Do you think that you are somehow doing something wrong if you've only sold five books since Saturday? Most authors are doing well if they sell five books in the first month. You need to be patient.
J. Fields

Posts: 5
Registered: 09/17/13
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 6:49 AM   in response to: sloppydog in response to: sloppydog
 
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I guess my question is, does my book look appealing to the purchaser (price, cover, description)?

Thanks for answering so quickly. Maybe I should be patient and not change the price to .99?

I didn't think that 5 books in a month would be a big deal. I'm still learing.

Edited by: J. Fields on Sep 21, 2013 6:49 AM

Edited by: J. Fields on Sep 21, 2013 6:50 AM
billhiatt

Posts: 1,191
Registered: 09/15/12
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 7:10 AM   in response to: J. Fields in response to: J. Fields
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Five in a week isn't bad, but it is important to remember that most books don't sell very much without some kind of promotion, so you might want to check out some of the threads on this forum related to promotion and advertising. Some people will find the book anyway, especially when it is new and it's visibility is higher, but most self-published writers find they need to keep advertising to keep sales going. Certainly, that's been my experience.

I looked at your book, and I'm not seeing any of the obvious rookie mistakes. The cover is good and does convey a sense of what the book is like. The blurb is short and likewise conveys a good sense. The look inside material shows well-written and well-edited text. The only thing I noticed was a lack of commas for direct address. Also, the material does look interesting. I think readers interested in your genre will definitely check this book out. The trick, as I suggested above, is getting them to the page in the first place.

By the way, your impulse to lower the price was probably correct if this is your first novel. Many readers won't spend $4.99 on someone they don't know.

Edited by: billhiatt on Sep 21, 2013 9:13 AM
sloppydog

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Registered: 12/14/11
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 7:14 AM   in response to: J. Fields in response to: J. Fields
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it's far too soon to panic. Your book is up there now so you've got the rest of your life to start playing around with the price. I understand the excitement of publishing your first novel; We're all the same, we want it to take off immediately but it' never happens. My advice it to chill out, start writing your next book and make a decision on the price when you've had a while to monitor sales.
sloppydog

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Registered: 12/14/11
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 7:19 AM   in response to: billhiatt in response to: billhiatt
 
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I didn't actually see the price because I checked out the link from the UK where the price is unavailable. I agree that $4.99 is too much for an unknown author.
Ron Chappell

Posts: 952
Registered: 12/30/12
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 9:10 AM   in response to: J. Fields in response to: J. Fields
 
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.99 is the new free. Free is never good. You are entering a popular genera with a book that is, to all appearance, well done - 2.99 is the sweet spot right now even for one without bona fides (though being usurped by 3.99). Your book is long enough, and presented well enough that it should bring 2.99. I have seen many on this forum that would count themselves lucky to sell five books in a week.
lin130

Posts: 37
Registered: 07/05/10
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 9:20 AM   in response to: J. Fields in response to: J. Fields
 
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My first two books didn't sell (except to friends and family) five books in their entire history.

Thus I had no knowledge of how to know how many people had bought my third book. I don't remember how I stumbled onto this sight, but when I did, I was stunned. Since June 1 this book has sold about 330 times, Not Stephen King or Rawlings territory, but I'm delighted.,

So don't give up, especially with one book.

The secret of my 'success'? I finally wrote something people wanted to read. Three hundred people, anyway.
billhiatt

Posts: 1,191
Registered: 09/15/12
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 9:28 AM   in response to: J. Fields in response to: J. Fields
 
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After reading the input from some of the others, I will amend my first advice: you don't need to go all the way down to .99, but dropping from 4.99 is still a good idea.

Let me offer one specific piece of promotional advice. Social media can be an excellent free promotion mechanism if it is well used. Create an author page. (I use a separate account for that so as not to flood my actual friends with book promotions.) Use it for book news, but also use it for tidbits of information about yourself. "Fans" (people who will "like" your author page) tend to be interested in the author as a person; they will look at some advertising but are not going to want a steady flow of nothing but advertising.

Once you have established that kind of environment, poke around on FB and find author groups. (There may even be some genre specific ones that would be good fits.) The right groups offer useful advice, cross-promotional opportunities, etc. Join a few that look well-trafficked and have at least some authors that write in your genre. That kind of support can be invaluable.

After establishing yourself in a few groups (and by establishing yourself, I mean giving as well as receiving--the relationship is symbiotic), have a (belated) online release party. Properly staged, this kind of FB event can be a good way to raise awareness about your book. Authors you know from your groups will join the event and share the event with their fans, at least if they have fans that might be interested in your genre. Put your book on sale leading up to and during the release party. (That might be a reason not to go to .99 right away; you can use that price for your release party price, though.) It is desirable also to offer some prizes to party attenders. (They don't have to be expensive.) Some authors use trivia contests based on the early content of the book; to have much of a shot, people need to read your "look inside" on Amazon or any excerpt you post as part of the party, so that encourages more people to read the beginning and hopefully get hooked. Some authors also have drawings in which they give away autographed paperbacks and that kind of thing, sometimes even small gift cards. Prizes keep excitement going, and, as I said, if planned correctly, lead to more people reading your blurb, first chapter, etc.

None of these suggestions guarantee sales, but they certainly increase the likelihood your book will sell, and particularly with a well-written book, sometimes a little exposure is all it takes to push the book to a higher sales level, at least for a while.
Emily Veinglory

Posts: 1,519
Registered: 04/25/13
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 10:10 AM   in response to: Ron Chappell in response to: Ron Chappell
 
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Is inspy drama where the MC does "sinful" things popular? because I have heard the reverse. That inspy readers general do not want to read about people who do bad things even of they are "saved" at the end.
Charles J Barone

Posts: 22
Registered: 09/18/13
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 11:41 AM   in response to: J. Fields in response to: J. Fields
 
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Five!! I've sold 2 in the couple of days mine has been up.

Considering the thousands or tens of thousands of pages that people have to wade through to find our books, I think selling 5, or my 2 is a triumph.

I'm curious how I'll do now that I've got word out on a couple of forums and Facebook. The 2 were sold before I even let anyone know I had published to Kindle.
Ron Chappell

Posts: 952
Registered: 12/30/12
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 1:21 PM   in response to: Emily Veinglory in response to: Emily Veinglory
 
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Emily, it seems that view has changed somewhat of late (all according to a friend who is doing quite well in that venue and is slowly altering course to reflect changing mores.) I could well be wrong and only comment on the general quality of the book and writing which seems worth 2.99 to the casual observer (me.)
J. Fields

Posts: 5
Registered: 09/17/13
Re: Only sold 5 Books
Posted: Sep 21, 2013 6:36 PM   in response to: J. Fields in response to: J. Fields
 
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Thanks to everyone for your wonderful encouragement and advice. I will be patient and try some of the ideas that you've mentioned.
Blessings.

P.S. I tried to mark many of these posts as helpful, but the "helpful button wasn't available, only the correct button.

Visit:

http://510pictures.com/Blog/
*************************
http://www.510pictures.com/

Edited by: J. Fields on Sep 21, 2013 6:54 PM
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