Adventures in Epublishing: The Importance of Reviews

For a new and unproven author, reviews can be extremely helpful in spreading the word about your book and provide new readers with the confidence that their money is well-spent.  However, I don't believe that they are always a deciding factor.

I currently have 8 very positive reviews on Amazon, and 3 very positive reviews on Goodreads.  These numbers are quite small compared to others who have hundreds of reviews.  I'm very lucky that my readers enjoyed what they read and have given me very positive reviews.  That has hopefully helped new readers choose my book on Amazon.  Yet on Barnes & Noble, where my online sales are beating Amazon this month, I have NO reviews, not a single one.  And people are buying there based on nothing more than the description and the price, I'm guessing.   But I'd love to see if more reviews translate into more sales...if anyone out there has given my book a read, please don't forget to post a review!  It can be our little experiment. 

I've been witness to books (not my own) receive some poor reviews and yet still go on to sell excellent numbers, so I think it's interesting that readers are not necessarily deterred by poor reviews. 

Fellow ebook authors have also mentioned another way to make your book more visible is to offer it up to book bloggers/book reviewers online and let them post a review.  It appears that many book bloggers have quite a large following, so a good review on one of these sites could be really helpful.  I've submitted to two book reviewers so far, but haven't had a review from either yet.  They get awful bogged down with requests, I'm sure, so it's probably going to take a little while.

What about you?  Have your reviews translated into big sales?  Did you see a boost from having a books blogger/reviewer give your book a thumbs up?  I'd love to hear your success stories!


  1. People may be reading reviews on Amazon or Goodreads but choosing to buy from B&N. The more reviews you get, the better. Readers are going to assume that the first 5-10 are your family members and BFFs, so no, they're not going to make much of a difference. And "bad" reviews help because they add balance, making the others seem more credible, too. If they're written well with constructive criticism, another reader might decide that what that reviewer didn't like is exactly what they're looking for.

    Book bloggers ROCK! They've been my biggest boost in reaching people I would otherwise never reach. Many of their followers are other book reviewers, so it snowballs. Yes, I do see a jump in sales whenever a popular book blogger reviews my books. So keep submitting to them. You'll get one or two who never do read or review it, but the majority will. They also love giveaways, guest posts, interviews, etc. They LOVE authors!

  2. I have only had my book reviewed twice on a blog, but they were both favorable and I did notice an uptick in ales (about 10 more on the day). I think it's a very helpful tool for newbies.

  3. Wow, those are great numbers, Layton!

    I'm still going to investigate some more reviewers and try to get the book out there. It would be so much easier if more reviewers accepted ebooks. That's the quickest way to get it out there.

  4. I agree that reviews are not the deciding factor when it comes to sales, but they do help. Readers vary and so does their criteria in purchasing a book. what is more important is to focus on these possible factors for you to somehow maximize your opportunity to generate sales for your books.

  5. Hey, nice site you have here! Keep up the excellent work!



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