The Amazon Cliff

Most people release books without a plan. I see hundreds of books a day where I wonder, where are the rest of the books? Having at least three books written to show, especially if it’s a complete series, will allow you to maximize your sales. People don’t like buying books until the series is complete. It’s a weird hang up of readers, but they don’t like cliffhangers, especially from new self-published authors. This is one very good reason why writing short, interconnected series works so well, because you can capture the completionists very quickly.

You should attempt to release a book at least once every three months. This is because of a phenomenon called the Amazon Cliff. The Amazon Cliff is when your book drops off significantly in the Amazon algorithm and Amazon stops pushing it to new customers. These cliffs happen at 30, 60, and 90 days after the release of your book.

By knowing this, you can “trick” the algorithm by always having a new book every three-months which bumps you back up into the top of the feed. Obviously, this isn’t really a trick since you really are releasing a new book, but if you don’t keep up at least a 90-day release schedule you will fall down the author ranking and have problems crawling back up.

Consistency is incredibly important when trying to build a following.  The more often you release a book, the better your chances of hitting the algorithm and making a splash. If you can release every 30 days, then Amazon will always be pushing your new book because you have released before the first “cliff”.

Your goal should be to release one book a month for two years to make Amazon work for you and get readers accustomed to buying your books, and then pull back to a more modest schedule afterwards. The quicker and more often you release the better life will be for you.  However, make sure you are releasing quality books because people can buy bad books for free. They will keep coming back to you because you give them something better.

Writing to market

Writing to market means you need to write fast. It’s important to understand that if you can write fast, and write a book that is “hot” on the market right now, then you will have the best chance of having your book take off and sell well.  Trends come and go every few months, so if you can’t write a book in a couple of months, then you will miss the trend. Writing to market is a great way to ride a trend and capitalize on the market right now.

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