Amazon Sales Obsession

Before I sold my first book, I was obsessed with when the mailman would come and checking my email in box. Now that my debut is out in stores, I’m embarrassed to say I have a new obsession… Amazon sales ranking.

My main motivation for writing is not to sell as many books as possible, but here’s the thing… the more books I sell, the more I can write.

It used to be that you could call a number through Ingram, punch in your ISBN number and get the actual sales numbers of your book.

No more.

Now, the only way that I know of for an author to get an idea of how they’re doing is through Amazon sales tracking.

There’s a problem with this method though. It fluctuates by the hour. Two days ago my numbers were sitting at about 9,000 (the lower the number the better). The next day I shot way up to forty thousand. By the end of the day, is was back down to 7,000.

What does all of this mean? (Gina shrugs.) It seems to me that anything under 100k is pretty good. Anything under 50k is good, under 25k very good, and if you hit under 1,000 … well, you ain’t going to be begging for your next contract.

There are folks who have dissected the numbers to guestimate approximately how many actual books are sold in any given sales rank. There are those who manipulate the sales rankings to obtain “best-sellerdom.” I’m not sure how or even why they do it, but here’s an interesting (but older) article that can point you to some in depth resources to read more about all of that.

If you find yourself checking your Amazon sales numbers more than once or twice a day, try Title Z as a time and mental health preserving alternative. The site lets you follow your book sales, giving you a great overall view of how it’s selling, (on Amazon at least). It’s far more accurate to see that your 30 day sales ranking is at 15k, then your ranking today is 2k (hooray!!!) and tomorrow it’s 40k (boooo…).