Thursday, February 28, 2013

KDP Select Experiment

I’ve followed quite a few blogs about KDP select and how other authors are doing with this program. You have to commit for 3 months to Amazon only for your book, at least in eBook format.

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. I split up the days, never really giving the book a chance to go somewhere. I  gave away 900 free copies the first 2 days, and the final 3 days in July I gave away 600 copies. It bumped me from about 200k in the ranking down to about 10k in the ranking.  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 the 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 that holiday month.sales 2012
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 published 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 
top 2 in kdp select treasure so rare
I did 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.
grace brannigan book sales 2013

My experience with KDP is that my two other books in the series really got the attention from this promotion. Treasure So Rare has sold some copies (about 30), but that's been bouncing in the rankings after the promotion while Book 1 and Book 2 have remained at about 17 to 20k. 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. Not only on the US Amazon but also the UK Amazon.

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. Having 9 romances available instead of only 1 or 2 certainly seems to make a difference, especially if they’re in a series.Grace Brannigan KDP select
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.

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