Yes, you can do a permanent price set to zero, but NOT in the KDP Select program. In fact, if you want to do it you cannot have that title in KDP Select as you need to publish it elsewhere.
In my experience and experimentation, you need a dedicated ISBN number for the ebook title. Load the ebook, with that ISBN, to Smashwords and set the price for free (which they allow). Also publish the ebook (same ISBN) to Kindle, set the price at the minimum. On the book's product page report the zero price on Smashwords. Wait.
That story has been free for about 2 months now, with downloads appearing in the sales reports as free "price match" promotions. The story, itself, is a solid-length novella, and a good value for the reader, having been previously professionally published in Analog magazine. It is giving a story away for free, but it is also getting consistent advertising for free - a trade-off, to be sure, but so far one that seems to be working. I would not suggest this, however, unless you have more than one title available.
" It is against KDP TOS for family/friends to review your book. "
Where is that stated ... I see many books reviewed by family and friends ...
If you are meaning the somewhat slipperly answers in the FAQ's then look again it say's nothing of the sort. It actually does a wonderful job of avoiding answering the question and suggests that it is more likely that a fellow resident at your post code cannot make a review ... after all how could amazon posibly know who who your rothers or sisters where, let alone your friends.
after all how could amazon posibly know who who your rothers or sisters where, let alone your friends.
Slightly strange question in view of the fact that you state: "I see many books reviewed by family and friends ..."
But presumably you do know who the friends and family are of the authors of these many books.
Well if you actually read that it does not state family cannot review your books as I said there are many books on there with reviews all 5 star I may add from brothers and sisters ... how do I know that? Perhaps because they do a full disclosure as part of the review.
Hmmm, reading comprehension doesn't seem to be your forte. It states EXACTLY that in the Faq:
Have your customer review guidelines changed?
No. To see our guidelines please visit: Customer Reviews Guidelines
The guidelines say “promotional content” is not allowed. What would Amazon consider promotional content?
Customer Reviews are meant to give customers genuine product feedback from fellow customers. While we encourage reviewers to share their enthusiasm and experience, there can be a fine line between that and the use of customer reviews as product promotion. Our goal is to capture all the energy and enthusiasm (both favourable and critical) that customers have about a product while avoiding use of reviews to outright advertise, promote and especially mislead. We have a zero tolerance policy for any review designed to mislead or manipulate customers.
Can you be more specific about what types of reviews do not meet the guidelines?
To help illustrate, here are a few examples of customer reviews that we don't allow:
A product manufacturer posts a review of their own product, posing as an unbiased customer
A customer, unhappy with her purchase, posts multiple negative reviews for the same product
A customer posts a review in exchange for financial reward
A customer posts a review of a game, in exchange for bonus in-game credits A family member of the product creator posts a five-star customer review to help boost sales
A customer posts a review of the product, after being promised a refund in exchange
A seller posts negative reviews of a competing product
An artist posts a positive review on a peer's album in exchange for a positive review
There is a list on the left. It is a long list; so you may have to scroll down to see the whole list. You click on that list that is in BLUE. Then a new page appears. On that page will be more information, and MORE LINKS highlighted with BLUE. Sometimes these links are just words that are highlighted BLUE; sometimes it is an obvious link also in BLUE. You need to click on those links as well.
You NEED to read all of this stuff. Don't just get little snippets of info here and there from this forum. Read it all until you understand it. About 99.99% of what you need to know will be there.
Ain't Amazon nice? You need to get this free book and READ it. It can also help you.
Good luck Samuel!
The only time the word "family" is used in the link you provided is here: "A family member of the product creator posts a five-star customer review to help boost sales". This apparently is not allowed. However, it does not specifically ban family reviews. It says family members are not allowed to post five star reviews to help boost sales. By that definition, if a family member posts a four star review, it would, theoretically, be allowed.
Basically, if you've ever had a transaction or interaction with AZ that involved that reviewer's address and/or computer, they will know. For example:
-If you logged into AZ on their computer
-If you bought something as a gift for them, and sent it to their address
-If they bought something for you and shipped it to your address
AZ has software that captures any of those things, and any review left by anybody like that will eventually (or instantly) disappear. The reviewer, if he/she asks AZ about it, will be told, "It appears that you have a personal relationship with the author." (This happened to somebody--who legitimately bought, read, and reviewed my book, but who did in fact know me, and that's how I know it does happen.)
I've also had it happen--twice, on two different books--that a fellow author in my genre left a somewhat negative (one three-star, one two-star) review, and both got taken down within the same week, some time after they were posted. Which leads me to believe that, yes, you are not allowed to review books in your genre. (Which I've also read somewhere on the FAQs or an AZ newsletter but, alas, can't put my hands on to confirm). I haven't had any positive reviews from fellow authors who identified themselves, to be removed or left up, so I can't state conclusively that this was in fact what happened, but it seems likely.
Um, they used an informal example to explain what cannot be used in the FAQ. While it is true that there is no way they can know who is and who isn't a family member or friend beyond tracing the IP or account right back to the author's location, I can tell you that they have been removing reviews that appear to be just that. For example, 4 or 5 star reviews posted, but are the ONLY review posted, those are often flagged for deletion. Same thing for 1 star reviews. Sometimes you'll see them sticking around, but more often than not, if they are brought to the attention of the Zon mods, they get removed. Yes it is often hard to get a 1 star removed, but only because it seems that it takes multiple reports of abuse before the Zon will consider them abusive enough for removal.
Amazon has been removing shill or troll reviews for the past year. Some have been overlooked, but if they are brought to Zon's attention, expect them to disappear. If they originate from the same IP they will not allow them to be posted, or they will be removed eventually if they slip through. Just because you see others doing it and "getting away with it" doesn't make it ok. They too will eventually get caught out. There's much discussion about this all over the net. Google is your friend.