There’s authors out there talking about their five and six figure incomes utilizing the Amazon KDP Select free days in the program. I’ve followed quite a few blogs that talk about this, and then see I authors that are wondering why the same big paycheck hasn’t happened to them yet using KDP Select. What are they doing wrong? Why haven’t they found the secret? Based on my own experience, there is no “secret”.
I’ve tried KDP select twice, once when I had just signed up to place my eBooks on Amazon Kindle, and had only 1 of my romance eBooks available — and just recently, February 17 to 21st, where I now have a back list of 9 romances.
Today’s post is about the difference between that first experience and now, 8 months later. Keep in mind this is only my experience. But I have seen a difference in my sales just the last two weeks.
In June I placed my first eBook in the KDP select program. I signed up for the 3 months and utilized the 5 free days for Echoes from the Past, a contemporary romance. However, I split up the days, never really giving the book a chance to go somewhere. I gave away 900 free copies end of June 2 days, and first week of July I used the final 3 days and gave away 600 copies. It did bump me from about 200k in the ranking down to about 10k in the ranking. I thought this is great, surely the momentum will continue. After two weeks, my book went back to the 200k ranking and sometimes higher.
Below is the chart for sales in 2012. The books slowly grew in sales for the most part, beginning with the first book end of April at 2 sales. Once “Echoes from the Past” was off the free days my 3 other books in the series “Once and Always, Heartstealer” and “Wishing on a Rodeo Moon” made up most of the sales, but not “Echoes from the Past.”
By October I had added Book 1 and 2 in a time travel series, “Once Upon a Remembrance” and “Soulmates Through Time.” By November I had added two Short Romances, “Two Babies, a Cowboy and Sara” and “Deception.” For the month of December I did a special promo where all my romances were $1.99 and I also utilized Google adwords for the month of December.
By now all my books were available on Amazon Kindle and Smashwords and all their channels, however, most of my books sold via Amazon Kindle as noted below. I did not have any books in the KDP Select program since July 2012.
I had “Treasure So Rare” Book 3 in the time travel trilogy ready to be made available mid-January, so I decided to try KDP select for this romance. Having done more research on the KDP select program, I chose to take the 5 free days at once and just see what happened.
I utilized February 17 to 21 for the free days. I gave away almost 4000 free copies and interestingly, Book 1 and 2 in the time travel series jumped from about 180k and 225k in the ranking to 17k by the end of the 5 days. Treasure So Rare hit #2 and #3 in Kindle Free books and #10 to #5 in free Kindle Time Travel and fantasy.
I did do a Romance of the Week promo for Once Upon a Remembrance through Kindle Nation Daily in mid-January, and sold about 36 copies, but did not see any spillover to other books. January I sold 130 books total across all distribution places.
In February I sold 277 books, broken down below. Total eBook sales on Amazon Kindle for 2013 is now 399 eBooks and 25 everywhere else.
So my take on KDP is that my two other books in the series really got the attention from this promotion. Treasure So Rare has sold some copies, but that went back down in the rankings after the promotion while Book 1 and Book 2 have remained at about 17 to 20k in the rankings. How long this will last is a guess, but right now all my books are getting some spill over as far as I can see.
So since I have 9 romances available I believe that has made a different in KDP select. Readers have obviously searched out the other books in the series due to the increased exposure on KDP select. Having 9 romances available instead of only 1 or 2 certainly seems to make a difference also, and especially if they’re in a series.
My next KDP experiment is upcoming first week of March, a book in my contemporary series, “Heartstealer”. I will report back at the end of March on that experiment.
Since things have changed with KDP, we will see how this experiment turns out.