How To Choose the Right Kindle Keywords

Amazon-Keyword-Research

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Whether you’re a famous author or this is your first book, Kindle Keywords are an important part of any book marketing strategy.

Kindle keywords allow your book to be discovered by hungry shoppers on the world’s largest book market, Amazon, even while you sleep.

They help make it so that you get sales and get discovered without having to do major marketing.

Plain and simple, they are important.

So, if you have an incredible book, but don’t know how to make it so that Amazon shows your book to the right readers, then THIS is the article for you.

In This Article, You Will Learn:

  • What exactly are Kindle Keywords
  • How they help both fiction and nonfiction authors
  • How to find profitable kindle keywords
  • Kindle keyword tools that will help
  • How to increase your book rankings and increase your sales
Bonus: Want to increase your Book’s rankings on Amazon? Download my personal guide to increasing your book’s rankings and discoverability on Amazon so you get more sales continuously!

How Do Kindle Keywords Work To Sell Books?

When people shop for their next book on Amazon, they generally go to the search bar at the top of Amazon and describe the type of book they are looking for and hit search.

Amazon uses those words that the customer typed in, and other things that we’ll discuss in this article, in order to decide which books should be shown to the customer.

The phrase or word the customer types in is what we, as authors, should consider as “keywords.”

Keywords, or more specifically, Kindle Keywords when talking about Amazon books, are the words a shopper uses when looking for a book, and thus, they are the words we want our book to show up for when someone types it in.

But before we get into how to find profitable kindle keywords, I know there are going to be self-publishers out there that will disagree with me and say it’s either A: a waste of time or B: cheating the system.

However, so long as Amazon shoppers type something into Amazon’s search bar when looking for their next book, understanding keywords, and being smart with them, should always be a part of your marketing plan.

Plus, they work! And here’s some proof:

The first picture is of my steady consistent sales back in 2015. The one below that is the same book 2 years later. Still steady and consistent.

 

How did that happen?

It’s because Amazon happily keeps showing my book at the top of searches for my targeted keywords.

And here’s another example where someone changed their keywords and saw an uptick (btw you can totally change your keywords at any time and we’ll talk more about that later)

My buddy, Alex Barker of the The Happy PharmD noticed that the sales of his ebook had become stagnant.

After doing the steps discussed here, he got his book in front of a new market and generated more sales. Not bad for only changing his kindle keywords a little.

How kindle keywords can help sell more ebooks
And for those fiction writers that don’t think keywords work, I’ve found genre-specific examples to prove how keywords work for fiction authors too and here’s a podcast interview I did with TS Paul, who not only discusses how much they helped him, but he gives his exact process for doing it too!

Now, while there are a lot of success stories out there about keywords, this isn’t one of those MAGIC bullets. They help to get discovered, but as you’ll see in this article, there is so much more to it than just picking magic words and waiting.

And I’ll show you how.

Related Podcast Episode
                                          

 

How To Find Profitable Kindle Keywords

Before we get into the exact step-by-step process I use to find profitable kindle keywords, let’s talk about what makes a profitable kindle keyword in the first place.

In order to be worth your time, a Kindle Keyword should be a phrase or word that:

  1.  Shoppers actually type into Amazon
  2. Shoppers will actually pay money for
  3. The competition isn’t too hard

Now that we know what makes a good kindle keyword phrase or word, let’s attack each one of those three steps.

Step 1: Find Kindle Keywords People Actually Type into Amazon

It’s true that Amazon doesn’t directly tell us this.

However, there are two methods we can use in order to have a good idea of what people are actually doing:

  1. Amazon auto suggestions
  2. Google

Amazon created a function in their search box that guesses what you are going to type into it based on the popularity of particular terms – the autofill function.
Results for an Amazon Ranking search

So, if you were to start typing in the word “star,” Amazon would immediately pre-populate the search box with words Amazon believes you will type in next, based on previous customers’ searches and your own.

Google and tools like KWFinder.com are great for giving us more information about searches on the internet. It’s not specifically about Amazon’s searches, but it still is a good way to discover new search terms we might not have thought of.

So, let’s start with Amazon.

Amazon Search Terms

First, we want to start by going into incognito mode. This will make sure that the information Amazon presents us is not based on our information. Amazon likes to track what we do, click and buy. And they use this information in order to show us things.

But when doing this keyword research, we don’t want that to happen. We want to know what the rest of the market is doing and see their raw results. If you’d like to learn more about incognito mode and how to use it, click here.

Next, start by selecting “Kindle Store” or “Books” as the Amazon category. You want to know what is popular in your industry and not be shown products or terms other than book terms.

Once you have “Kindle Store” or “Books” selected, start typing in words or phrases that pertain to your ebook.

Type slowly. You want to give Amazon an opportunity to pre-generate a list of potential keywords for you.

A good strategy is to add each letter of the alphabet at the end of your word/phrase, and see what comes up. For example, say we are still on the sci-fi hunt like the picture above. You would start by typing in the following:

“Science Fiction a”…then, “Science Fiction b”…then, “Science Fiction c”…

and so on…

You would do this with every letter of the alphabet – even ‘z’ – and look to see how Amazon completes your search phrase. You’d be surprised what Amazon will come up with!

As you go, keep a written list of possible long tail keywords that you think would pertain to your book. Are you starting to see how powerful this strategy is?

Now, the above steps don’t tell you how popular they are; they only tell you that people type this into Amazon. If you’d like to know how many people type those words into Amazon, you’d need a tool like KDP Rocket.

Okay, so that should get us a pretty good list of words. But let’s go one step further and look at Google’s information as well.

Start by going to KWFinder.com  or you can use Google’s Keyword Planner. I like KWFinder better because it gives more information about the popularity of the term and general competition.

Plus, you can do a couple of searches for free each day.

Type in a word/phrase into the keyword tool and see what it presents. Go through the list and write down any that you think might be good for your book. Once you have a list of Google words, go back to Amazon and type those words in to see what Amazon suggests. If nothing is shown, then it means that while good on Google, it doesn’t translate over to Amazon 🙁

So, let’s recap the above with nice little bite-sized steps:

  1. Use incognito mode when browsing
  2. Select “Kindle Store” or “Books” for search categories
  3. Using Amazon’s Suggestion feature, start broad and use the added a-z method to find more keywords and write them down.
  4. Once you have an initial list, repeat step 3 on certain words in your list and niche down further
  5. Go to KWFinder.com or Google Keyword Planner and do searches to see if there are any Google terms that are applicable as well
  6. If you find a term from Google that might be a good fit, repeat steps 2 and 3 for that term.

Okay, now that we’ve got that out of the way, it’s time to dive deeper into that list of words and see if they are phrases that shoppers will actually pay money for.

Step 2: Find Kindle Keywords That Shoppers Will Actually Pay For

Shoppers may type in the above words, but that doesn’t mean they’ll find what they are looking for or decide to purchase. There are some terms out there that might get a LOT of searches but just don’t get sales.

That’s why this step is important.

To find out if a kindle keyword is making money, first, do a search for that keyword in Amazon. Then click on the top three books that show up for that search.

Next, go to their Amazon Best Seller Rank (ABSR), copy, and paste it into my Kindle Calculator. This calculator will convert the ABSR of a book or kindle into estimated sales that day.

Now, if the three books ranking at the top of Amazon don’t make any money, or less than other keyword options of yours, you now know one of two things:

  1. Not many people search for that keyword – thus, low sales
  2. People who do search for that keyword didn’t find what they were looking for and didn’t buy.

Now, go through your list, repeat, and see which of your keywords are not only getting searched, but also making sales.

The right kindle keywords can make or break your book sales. Choose wisely with these steps, my friends #SelfPubClick To Tweet

Here’s a recap of each of those steps:

  1. Select “Kindle Store” or “Books” for search categories
  2. Conduct an Amazon search for one of your keywords
  3. Select the book at the top of the results
  4. Find it’s Amazon Best Seller Rank (ABSR) and copy it
  5. Go to the Kindlepreneur Calculator, and paste it in
  6. Write down on your list how many books the book has sold that day
  7. Repeat steps 4-6 for the books that showed up 2nd and 3rd in the results

Alrighty then…now that we know which keywords get searched and help to sell books, let’s take a look at the level of competition and see if we can get our foot in the door.

 

Step 3: Check the Kindle Keyword Competition

If we can’t get our book to show up for a keyword, or show up at the top of the results, then that keyword won’t help us.

Don’t believe me, check this out:

The above is a chart showing what percentage of shoppers click on the books that rank #1-14 in search results.  So, if 1,000 people type into Amazon “How to write a book” per month, then statistically speaking, 270 will click on the book that shows up at the top, but only 60 will click on a book that shows up #6.

As you can see, we NEED to beat the top ranking books (1-5) in order to benefit from the kindle keyword shoppers. Otherwise, your keyword won’t help you.

So, to help you with this step, here are some things you should consider when looking at the top 10 books that show up for those results.

Book Covers: A great looking book cover design is super important. If the book cover design stinks, but that book is making sales, then GREAT! Verify that you can create a cover better than what is there.

Titles and Subtitles: Is the keyword in the title or subtitle? If so, then know the author is targeting this term strongly. Also, does the book title or subtitle make sense?  Here are two articles to help you craft a bestseller book title, and a subtitle that converts.

Book Reviews: How many book reviews do they have? Are they recent or super old? Are they verified or unverified? What rating do they have? Having better and more reviews than your competitors is a sure fire way to get the sale over the competition. Here’s a great tactic to help you increase your reviews legitimately.

Book Description: Book descriptions are more important than people think. It’s what makes shoppers click to buy. It’s that last-ditch act of convincing shoppers they need to buy the book. So, is their book description well written, or are they structuring their book description so it looks presentable, like my free Book Description HTML tool will help you do?

Age: Newer books usually still have a lot of Amazon love, and are usually doing big marketing pushes. So, their numbers and popularity are a little inflated. However, if the book you’re competing against is years old and still crushing it on the market, then beware!

Author’s Popularity: If the author is super famous or has a large following and email list, then they are really competitive. First, go to their Amazon Author Page and check their author rank. You can also do a Google search for their name, and look at the website (use this) to figure out if they are getting people to their website, look at their social media and see if they have a huge following, and just get a general feel for how much this author is invested in the subject matter.

After looking at the level of competition, you should have some terms/phrases that not only get searched, and bring in money, but they won’t be too competitive for you to use and get in front of a buyer’s market. – Congrats!

Kindle Keyword Results for Fiction and NonFiction

If you’ve done the steps above, you should start to have:

  • list of keywords
  • how many people per month search for that keyword
  • An understanding of how much books are making for those keywords
  • how competitive they are

Let’s see what that would look like using a fiction and nonfiction example:

Keyword Example for Fiction:

Data was collected using KDP Rocket

In the example above, I showed how just niching down in genre can really help.  Looking at the numbers we can see that something like Space Marines has a lot more opportunity than something like Sci Fi Military, and still gets decent searches per month.

As a new author, targeting Space marines would be much better than going for Science Fiction or even Scifi military.  And the numbers help us with this.

But fiction keywords don’t have to be genre terms.  We can target settings, events, moods, etc.  Here is an article showing you more about finding fiction keywords, but as an example, let’s just look at the difference of types of Wizards and how this plays on the market:

Data was collected using KDP Rocket

As you can see, just the choice of type of wizard affects our ability to be discovered, as well as our potential share of the market.  Now, think about what it would be like just guesing at this instead of looking at the numbers.

That’s why this is SO important in our book marketing research.

Keyword Examples for NonFiction:

Let’s take a look at a Nonfiction example:

Data was collected using KDP Rocket

As you can see, a broad term like Parenting is extremely hard.  However, there is a lot of promise in targeting “toddlers” or even “ADHD.”  Of if you’re someone like me, who has a strong-willed child, that might be a good one too.  

The Best Tool For Finding Profitable Keywords

Obviously, the above steps are quite tedious and back when I did it, it could take forever to get my keyword information altogether.

That’s why my team and I created KDP Rocket. This self-publishing software does exactly what we just talked about:

  • Gives you keyword suggestions using both Amazon’s search and Google
  • Tells you how many people per month type the keyword into Google
  • Tells you how many people per month type the keyword into Amazon (SUPER new feature)
  • Gives a score from 1-99 telling you how competitive a kindle keyword is
  • Tells you how much money other books are making
  • Gives you essential data so as to beat those books and rank better

Here’s a sneak peak of its book idea search function.

Best of all is that it works on both MAC and PC!

KDP Rocket has been seen on Forbes, Entrepreneur, and more. Increase your keyword research efficiency and effectiveness for a one-time fee of ONLY $97. Soon, we will be making it a subscription. So lock in your lifetime access now!
Get It Now!

I’ve Got Kindle Keywords, Now What?

The above were steps to researching and finding profitable keywords, so now what?

Well, it’s time to convince Amazon that your book should show up for those keywords when someone types them into Amazon. In the search engine world, we call this “getting indexed.”

Here are 3 ways to convince Amazon your book should show up for those keywords:

1. Your 7 Kindle Keywords

In your KDP dashboard, Amazon will ask you to give them 7 kindle keywords. Go ahead and put your well-chosen keywords here. I highly recommend that you don’t stuff a bunch of keywords into this area – regardless of what others recommend. Amazon is a lot more competitive than it used to be, and I personally think that you shouldn’t dilute the strength of your keyword push by throwing other words in there. You did some great research – stick by that.

2. Your Book Title or Subtitle

Having the keyword phrase in your title or subtitle is a great indication that your book is about that. I’m not saying you should just ‘stuff’ a bunch of words in there…no no. But remember that Kindle Keywords are the words your target shopper uses when looking for their next book. A great way to get a customer’s attention is to use their own words. So, keywords can be great for helping you improve your sales copy 😉

3. Your Book Description

The same goes for your book description. I’m honestly not sure if Amazon checks the words in your description to use that as a factor for indexing. However, like I said in #2 above, keywords are the words your customer used to describe what they wanted and a good book description should convince them this IS the book they want. If Amazon continues to see that when people type in a specific keyword, they buy your book, Amazon will wise up and realize, you’re the best product for that keyword 🙂

To Sell More Books, Kindle Keywords should be a FIRST thought...not an AFTERthought. #BookMarketClick To Tweet

Doing the above three steps, you should ‘show up’ for the keyword if a shopper types it in.

But like you can see on the rankings chart above, if you aren’t ranking #1-5, then you’re not getting much out of that keyword.

Even more so, the book that ranks #1 gets 2x more shoppers than the book that ranks #2.

So, how do you convince Amazon to rank your book #1 for that keyword so that your book benefits from all this research?

Well, that’s a completely different subject. Luckily, I have a full free pdf that shows you exactly how to do exactly that, legitimately.

Kindle Keyword Rules To Abide By

While Kindle keywords can be extremely useful, they are restricted by some Amazon rules. Here is a complete list of Amazon Keyword No-Nos – these are Amazon’s rules, not mine:

Do not include these things in your Amazon Keywords:

  • Any information that is covered somewhere else in your book such as title, category, etc.
  • Any claim about its quality like “best” or “top”
  • Statements that are temporary like “on sale”, “new”, or “limited offer”
  • Common information about all books like “book” “ebook” “kindle”
  • Misspellings so as to game the system, unless it is a translation issue like “Mao Zedong” and “Mao Tse-tung” (PS: We have a great article that talks about translations and how to increase your international book sales through this)
  • Variations of words or spacing
  • Anything that is misleading

So, if any of your potential keywords aren’t in line with the above, remove them.

Conclusion

Keywords are important. In order to make your book stand out from the crowd, you must learn how to strategically choose them and ethically harness their power.

There’s a difference between Amazon Keywords and SEO Keywords. I’ve shown you how to choose and use them both to increase your ebook sales.

The right keyword combinations can open up new markets for you. Strategic keyword selection will drive more viewers to your book. You can use keywords to gain more viewers and ultimately, make more sales.

Find the right keywords one of two ways: either use my free methods, or pay once for KDP Rocket and have all the dirty work done for you. With KDP Rocket, you will have instant access to loads of incredibly valuable information at your fingertips.

Whichever method you use, just use this information ethically and you will enjoy the rewards.

BONUS: Don’t forget to download my free guide to increasing your kindle rankings. Just click below to download and start getting your book in front of more customers.

Cheers,

Dave-Signature

 

74 Comments

  1. Dave Chesson on July 9, 2015 at 8:54 am

    I have learned the hard way that comments don’t always work…haha.. testing testing 1, 2, 3.



  2. Michal on July 9, 2015 at 5:52 pm

    *hate comment*
    I really don’t think keywords are any good. Take “personal mission statement” for example. My book ranks at Kindle at #1 or #2 ever since publishing. KW Finder says 9,900 searches a month. I sell 1-2 copies a day and it is not a $9.99 book.

    Another book, another keyword: “persistence”, 60,500 searches, about 5 sales a day.
    IMHO, they are not worth chasing.



    • kindlepreneur on July 9, 2015 at 11:43 pm

      First off, congrats on being able to write a ever green book that brings in $90 – $180 a month, every month. I am sure there are a lot of authors out there that would see that as a victory. And how long did it take you to write that book? But now, you enjoy that passive income, right? Awesome.

      So, how do you think you got those 1-2 copies a day? Is it because you send that traffic to your book? Or is it because the Amazon algorithm sends that traffic? So, what I see is that your keyword “personal mission statement” was easy to rank for, and thus got you to rank #1 in Amazon. In turn, that keyword drove enough traffic to your ebook page to create 1-2 sales per day….and thus brings you $90-$180 a month in passive income. Sounds like keywords worked for you….just not in the uber awesome way you were hoping for.

      Keyword research isn’t perfect, but using the steps above prior to writing the book, you would have seen that your book would have been profitable…which it was. Again, congrats!



      • Michal on July 10, 2015 at 7:52 am

        Dave, you are making a classic mistake assuming that all the trafic to my book goes from keyword research.

        What about word of mouth referals? What about bestseller listings? What about “Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought” section?
        I honestly doubt that even 30% of Amazon traffic comes from keywords.
        And your income math needs some improvement. Amazon’s cut is not my income.



      • Tam Francis: The Girl in the J on February 27, 2016 at 4:35 am

        Agree. That would be dreamy. I’d love to have one sale a day let alone 5. Totally inspired here, thanks!



  3. Dave Koziel on July 13, 2015 at 5:48 pm

    Awesome post! One of the biggest mistakes I made when first starting out with publishing on Kindle was ignoring keywords. I’ve gotten better at them and have seen more success because of it but I’m still not where I want to be. I’ve always just focused on targeting keywords for Amazon’s search engine and never really focused on the actual search engines like Google, Yahoo etc. It’s something I’ve been wanting to learn more about because I definitely see the value in getting your Amazon books to rank high for Google searches. One thing you mention which I’ve actually seen opposite results on was including the title of your book as one of the 7 keywords. You mention it at some points as if it’s breaking an Amazon rule to do this, I never knew this if it is. I’d be curious to know more about you reasonings for excluding it from part of the 7 keywords. When I first started publishing I did not include the book title as part of the 7 keywords because I didn’t think I needed to but someone recommended that I try it and when I went back and put my book title as a keyword I saw an increase in sales. There are a lot of other variables involved in this which may have been the actual reason for the sales increase so I’m definitely curious to hear your thoughts on this.



    • kindlepreneur on July 13, 2015 at 10:49 pm

      Hey Dave – great name btw, the list of no-no’s that I refer to in the post are actually Amazon’s rules. They say you can’t have a Amazon Keyword that is in your title. Here is the reference link: https://kdp.amazon.com/help?topicId=A2EZES9JAJ6H02. Whether or not it helps? I believe it will help to rank your book faster for that term…but not better.



  4. Ariel Sanders on September 8, 2015 at 2:02 pm

    I love Kindle Samurai!



    • kindlepreneur on September 9, 2015 at 3:41 pm

      Awesome sauce Ariel! It totally does the trick, but I really think there are ways that it could be improved.



  5. Flora Morris Brown on October 30, 2015 at 12:28 am

    Hi Dave, thanks for sharing the benefits of Kindle Samurai. I need clarification: at the end of the video it says put your best keyword from the 7 we posted on the KDP page also in the title. Isn’t this exactly what Amazon says DON’T do? Also, wouldn’t we already have our books completed and titled before going to the KDP submission page or is this tool suggesting that we determine our keywords before creating our book’s title.



    • kindlepreneur on January 14, 2016 at 12:01 pm

      The best time to do keyword research is before you start writing. It will help to validate your ideas and ensure there is a market for it…a market that isn’t over crowded that is. With regards to the video, that one isn’t mine. So, go with what I wrote 😉 The only thing that Amazon requires is that you don’t use your title as one of the 7 keywords. Hope that helps.



  6. stvwrd on November 6, 2015 at 1:28 pm

    Let’s say you find a keyword that meets all the criteria above (suggested by the Amazon auto-suggest tool with “Kindle store” selected; actually zero existing books for it on Amazon, 2,400 monthly searches on Google, and after the top three google rankings, every page is a “0” on competitiveness), and the kw is something like “widget fanatic.” How would amazon treat naming the book something like this?: “Polishing your widget; fanatics’s guide to doing it right.”



  7. stvwrd on November 12, 2015 at 4:26 pm

    “Furthermore your Amazon Keyword’s relevance to Amazon QUICKLY dissipates a meager three months after you initially publish your book.”

    Does this mean that keywords are completely irrelevant when publishing a major update to a book? I hope not… I knew absolutely nothing about KW research and SEO when I first published and would love to put some of this into practice.



    • kindlepreneur on November 13, 2015 at 1:15 am

      The 7 “Kindle Keywords” that you initially select will lose their strength in A9’s eyes after about 3 months. However, I have heard (but don’t have personal data on this so take it for what it’s worth) that people have changed some of the 7 Kindle Keywords and seems increases in sales. Again, I can’t prove that and don’t have a case study for it.



      • stvwrd on November 13, 2015 at 3:10 pm

        Well, I’m about to go through it, so I’ll let you know how it goes. I’ve followed your steps and found some great Kindle keywords as well as a title tweak that *should* get me on the front page of Amazon search results regularly, and even a hidden category to shoot for that’s related to the topic but I didn’t know existed. All thanks to your blog. Seriously, I owe you big time.



        • kindlepreneur on November 13, 2015 at 3:22 pm

          That is awesome buddy! And if its the book I am thinking about, then its pretty cool to hear that since I read it a couple of years ago. Go figure!



  8. stvwrd on November 22, 2015 at 1:57 pm

    Argh! Went to purchase Kindle Samurai and it’s not available on Mac…. I did already go through the whole step by step process that you outlined, so hopefully the KWs that process produced are good enough.



  9. Vicky on November 27, 2015 at 8:59 am

    The kwfinder tool is absolutely superb. I am testing this tool for finding the title of my next book. Initially I had thought of another title, but I was convinced to try your kwfinder strategy, and changed the title hoping that it will rank in the 1st page of google as well. Question: Would a “two word” keyword, with 1.900 searches per month, a comp. level of 25, and a couple of “0-10” competitors in the 1st google page, be considered as opportunity? Given that the topic seems to be profitable in Amazon? Should I also promote heavily the permalink of the book in order to help my google ranking in the first page? Thanks!!



    • stvwrd on December 7, 2015 at 6:01 am

      I’m no expert, but I’m finding the length, for one, doesn’t really matter. If you discover that every month 2,000 people are searching for “How to change my own tire with a pocket knife and duct tape,” and only 100 people are searching for “pocket knife duct tape tire change” every month, then you target the first one (and thank God, because good luck making ‘pocketknife duct tape tire change’ sound natural in body text).

      That’s only a partial answer to your question, but that’s the part I *think* I’ve figured out.



      • Vicky on December 7, 2015 at 7:52 am

        Yes, exactly, that confirms my thinking. When I started publishing, I used to spend only a couple of hours in keyword research. Now I realize it is a process that could take me at least 2-3 days for each book!! Thanks 🙂



  10. stvwrd on December 7, 2015 at 6:02 am

    What’re your thoughts on writing multiple books within a single niche in terms of KW selection and category? Target the exact same categories and kws, or mix it up?



    • kindlepreneur on December 7, 2015 at 1:32 pm

      Well, I’m a big fan of buidling series inside of a niche…or making your own competition if you find that your book in that niche is doing well….remember, high traffic…low competition. Can’t help to write more books in the area so it looks like there is more competition and you are making more with it. Also, when building upon your series, you have more chance to regain a previous buyer and build upon previous success.



  11. C T Mitchell on January 14, 2016 at 11:34 am

    I have Kindle Damurai and I’m still tanking in the rankings. Are you suggesting to put powerful keywords into the title, sub title and description AND add another 7 keywords into the internal keyword section?



    • kindlepreneur on January 14, 2016 at 11:59 am

      A lot of that depends. It depends on the competition of the keyword. It depends on how aligned your book is with it. However, if there is perfect keyword for your book, and there is a some competition for it, then the more you use it (e.g. Title, one of 7 kindle keywords, subtitle, description) the better chance the A7 Amazon algorithm will pick your book up for that particular keyword and rank you better. once it decides you should rank better, then ti comes down to your conversions. If no one will buy your book, but they are buying books below you in the rankings for a keyword, then those books will overtake you eventually. But if you continue to make sales when people type in the Keyword, then you’ll rise to the top and stay there….which means more traffic and more sales.



  12. Tam Francis: The Girl in the J on February 27, 2016 at 4:31 am

    Quick question. Can this still be effective if you already have a book title? How effective is this for fiction? I’m almost convinced to buy. It seems more geared to non-fiction. Thanks.



    • kindlepreneur on February 27, 2016 at 11:16 am

      Hey Tam, while it helps if your title has a keyword in it, I wouldn’t change my title to reflect that…unless it works and is natural – especially for fiction. For Fiction, I actually have a post that will come out in a couple of weeks that talks about particular keyword strategies for fiction authors. As for the software, you might want to wait until KindleRocket.com comes out. I’m super excited about that little guy.



      • Tam Francis: The Girl in the J on February 27, 2016 at 3:29 pm

        So, DON’T buy Kindle Samurai, yet? Tell me more about KindleRocket. Also, did I read correctly that you can re-do your key words? I totally did the keyword thing all wrong when I put my ghost story collection on Amazon. So how long for KindleRocket?



  13. .Trade Ideen. on March 3, 2016 at 7:04 am

    Thanks for the great insights dave. Was able to take away lots of valuable information!
    One thing i cant get my head around: when using kindle samurai, it just takes keyword searches on google into account, right? Why would i wanna use the best Google KW for my book on amazon? I can’t see that people are searching the same way on amazon than they do on google. I mean, if a KW gets a lot of volume on google it doesnt necessarily mean that this is a well searched KW on amazon as well, is it?

    Hope this makes sense and would like to hear your opinion on that.

    Cheers,



    • kindlepreneur on March 3, 2016 at 10:58 am

      Although Samurai has the “G Searches” it doesn’t work because the creator of Samurai doesn’t update the software…if yours does work, then let me know.

      However, supplementing your Samurai info with Google Searches is a good idea. The problem with Amazon is that they don’t tell you how many searches a particular word gets, however, another powerful search engine does: Google. Although Google and Amazon are different, knowing things like 120 people a month more use the word “validation” instead of “test” when talking about ideas, gives you a leg up. If they would use “Validate Ideas” more on Google, then they probably use “Validate Ideas” over “Test Ideas” in Amazon as well. Using Google information you can get an idea of what words people naturally use when conducting a search on a platform…or an idea of words to include. Is it perfect? No, but its good info to consider.



  14. Daniel Lewis on March 20, 2016 at 10:55 am

    Very interesting article and I get the software and is great! Thanks!



    • kindlepreneur on April 13, 2016 at 6:46 pm

      Awesome to hear Daniel!



  15. Julia McCoy on April 13, 2016 at 3:58 pm

    AHHH. SUCH A HELPFUL POST. I found killer keywords after using your criteria.

    IE: I went from thinking of using:

    online writing 31241 searches

    to

    content marketing made easy 16 searches
    …and more!!

    The only sadness. I cannot buy Kindle Samurai. WHY WHY don’t they work for Mac!!

    ——————-

    Eating up everything you blog about, Dave! You’re the MAN! Let’s connect soon and have you on my Twitter chat and podcast talking about your expertise. I have your email, after my book comes out this Fri let’s chat! 🙂



    • kindlepreneur on April 13, 2016 at 6:49 pm

      Yeah, about that Mac issue…I’ve got a solution coming out. Me and my team are creating something that will be even better, stronger and faster….and will definitely work on both Mac and PC. It’s KindleRocket.com. Hopefully it’ll launch (literally?) in June…fingers crossed.

      Thank you so much for the kind words…seriously made my day reading that. And definitely sounds good about connecting! Hit me up any time.



  16. Khalid Zidan on April 16, 2016 at 2:59 pm

    sad it is not on mac!!



    • kindlepreneur on April 17, 2016 at 5:20 am

      Dont’ worry Khalid, I’m coming up with a solution very soon. I too am a Mac guy…heck I used to work for them and I completely agree. I placed it on my partitioned hard drive using Parallels but can’t stand that I even have that on my computer. Check out KindleRocket.com.



  17. Wilson on April 21, 2016 at 5:01 am

    Does the software works with other non-kindle products? For example, tshirts?



    • kindlepreneur on April 21, 2016 at 10:46 am

      Nope…just Kindle products.



  18. Aditya Sawdekar on June 7, 2016 at 5:50 pm

    Hi Dave,

    Just bought KD Suite for Keyword Research to start writing my next book. Could you please tell me if Kindle Samurai is good or KD Suite?



    • kindlepreneur on June 7, 2016 at 10:59 pm

      I actually prefer KDPRocket.com right now…but that one won’t be out for a couple more weeks 😉 In truth though, I haven’t tried KD Suite so I can’t say.



  19. Daniele Mariotto on June 9, 2016 at 10:39 am

    Do you suggest to watch what keyword are best and then create a kindle based on the keyword topic?



    • kindlepreneur on June 9, 2016 at 10:45 am

      Yup. I’m a big fan of book idea validation. Unless you have a large readership or following, you’ll need Amazon discoverability to help get your book to more people. The way to do that is to look for keywords that people are typing into Amazon that gets traffic but isn’t too competitive. In a couple of weeks I’ll have a couple more article that go in depth and my software will launch that will do all of the above, work on both PC and Mac AND tell you how many people per month on Amazon type that search term/keyword into Amazon.



  20. Micah Brooks on July 2, 2016 at 3:11 am

    Dave, this post is epic! Thank you for your help! I do have a question for you. I know you said that KWFinder is free. Maybe it has changed since you posted, however, it is only free for five searches/day. Am I missing something or have they perhaps shifted what they give away for free?

    Thank you again for your great content! Just heard you on Authority Self Publishing Podcast. There was a ton of useful information there! Everyone should listen to that one!



    • kindlepreneur on July 2, 2016 at 2:25 pm

      Hey Micah, thanks! Sorry about the confusion, I’ll make sure to edit the post, but my intentions were that KWFinder’s 5x per day would be sufficient for checks. Bit the truth is, my software, KDPRocket.com coming out later this month will do everything listed above, even what KWfinder does…but it will be a one time fee.



      • Micah Brooks on July 2, 2016 at 9:30 pm

        Thanks Dave! I am looking forward to seeing more about KDPRocket. I signed up on the list for information several days ago. Thanks again!



  21. Jorge Chaple on July 20, 2016 at 8:48 am

    Hi Dave,

    You mention KDPRocket will provide Amazon search volume (i.e. how many people search for a keyword in Amazon). Considering Amazon does not provide this data, how are you coming up with it? Of course, the exact formula is your IP but I would like to know the expected reliability of this value. Is it calculated based on Google search volume and Amazon ranking of the top results for the keyword?

    Thanks in advance!



    • kindlepreneur on July 21, 2016 at 11:57 am

      Hi Jorge, our calculations uses the ABSR as an indication of popularity, the location of the product for that term (known Click through rates depending on where it ranks), and expected data that was found in some literary journals about buying on Amazon and other metrics. We also incorporate a little Google factor in there because there ARE things that people type into Amazon, but don’t get a result or the results they are looking for.

      So, our calculation uses popularity of products, popularity of search terms on other platforms (so as to account for untapped potential markets) and statistical data from people smarter than me. I hope that helps?



  22. Gaurav Verma on November 11, 2016 at 7:07 am

    Your article is good but your blog font is bad, please change your blog font



  23. Lizzie Chantree on March 6, 2017 at 10:50 am

    A really interesting and informative article. I will post your link as a resource on lizziechantree.com tomorrow as I have just posted today. I was going to write a blog about keywords, but you have pretty much covered the whole topic here! I think this is very useful to new authors who are still working out which keywords work best. I am trying to learn as much as I can about it and I already use some of the methods you talk about, such as keywords in titles, subtitles and on photos. You’re KDP Rocket software sounds like it could be really useful!
    Even though this article was written a while ago, a lot of the points are still very useful for people starting out.



    • Dave Chesson on March 6, 2017 at 4:13 pm

      Awesome Lizzie, and glad it helps. I’m a very numbers oriented person and I like the idea of knowing what potential market exists. Another way of looking at Keywords is as book marketing research. As a matter of fact, I like to tell authors that they should do their keyword research before they start writing their book…when done this way, you can call it “Book idea validation.” Because if you do the keyword research and see that there is no market on Amazon looking for or buying that type of book, then you know that you can’t depend on Amazon to sell your book for you. You’ll need to create a book marketing plan that doesn’t rely on Amazon in order to succeed. You can read more about this shift here: https://kindlepreneur.com/book-idea-validation-mastery/



      • Lizzie Chantree on March 7, 2017 at 10:17 am

        Thanks Dave. I’ll take a look.



  24. Kristopher Grows on April 3, 2017 at 6:38 am

    What does KDP Rocket take as input? Does it measure the quality of user decided keywords only, or can it generate likely keywords for the less commercially inspired user?



    • Dave Chesson on April 3, 2017 at 10:41 am

      KDP Rocket uses Amazon’s own information to help you know the success rate of the keywords like how much people are making, how competitive the keyword is and how popular that keyword is in searches. It also lets you know of other keywords that people are using in Amazon and Google that are close to your original Keyword.



  25. Heather Walsh on May 29, 2017 at 7:28 pm

    Hi Dave,

    Yes, I’ve been a lurker for a couple months, but finally thought: I need to thank this man! So, here I am, saying thank you! I also had a quick question about Kindle Keywords. When you’re looking to show up on the first page, should it be in the first general page or specific book to our own category? For example, Amazon suggests Suspicious Deaths: 96 Kindle eBooks >Romance: 4, >Mystery & Suspense: 2. (I didn’t use this one, just an example). So, 96 books is hard, but the rest easy. Or does that not matter?



    • Dave Chesson on May 29, 2017 at 9:44 pm

      Hi Heather – aw thanks! As it pertains to this article and kindle keywords, showing up on the first page is the page of results. As in, if someone types something into Amazon, having your book show up on that first page is what you’re striving for. So, imagine that if 1,000 people per month type into Amazon “how to paint” and your book shows up at the top of the first page, then that means every month 1,000 people will see your book at the top…and statistically speaking, buy it – that will happen every month. Yay!

      Now, with regards to the category string that you provided in the comment, that’s about having a better Amazon Best Seller Rank than the other books in that category, so that you can become the #1 bestseller in that category. This doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll make more money, as I show in this article: https://kindlepreneur.com/kindle-rankings-categories-vs-keywords/ . If you’re looking for the best category to choose, then I’d recommend this article: https://kindlepreneur.com/how-to-choose-the-best-kindle-ebook-category/

      I hope that helps! If not, then hit reply and I’ll give it another stab



      • Heather Walsh on May 29, 2017 at 10:01 pm

        Yes, that helps a lot! Thank you so much! And just so you know, “how to paint” has 591 titles!



  26. Kirk Jockell on June 14, 2017 at 9:06 am

    Dave … Thank you for such an information rich article. It taught me how bad my own keywords were. As a matter of fact, it proved that most of my keywords either sucked or were part of the big no-no list. The part about unlocking and using a couple of the “hidden categories” was especially useful. I had no idea. I do have a couple of questions though.

    To me the use of long-tail keywords makes perfect sense. It was a kind of “DUH” moment for me (I’ve had many of those since starting this writing adventure). Anyway … if the long-tail key words are so effective, why does Amazon only recommend single words to be used as keywords?

    And … You state that the keywords become less effective after about three months of publishing your book. Why would Amazon do that? And since Amazon allows authors to experiment and update/change their keywords at anytime and since each change requires an author to essentially re-publish their work, would each update reset the 3-month clock?

    Okay … maybe that’s more like three questions.

    ksj



    • Dave Chesson on June 14, 2017 at 10:45 am

      Hi Kirk, glad to help. Honestly, not sure why they recommend only 1 word keywords. But there’s no denying how a targeted keyword really helps to ensure you show up for that particular one.

      As for the less effective, I should probably update and add more to the article on that. What happens is that Amazon likes to keep their book lists fresh – they give a little bit more love to newer books. So, after publishing, Amazon gives you the benefit of the doubt and boosts you a little bit more. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean you will drop in rankings just because your time is up. In truth, if your book gets the most conversions for that ranking (proof that customers like your book being there) then you’ll stay at the top.

      As for changing them, that’s up to you. It’s not exactly re-publishing every time you change something n the KDP dashboard, so I wouldn’t look at it like that. More like you’re updating your information.



      • Kirk Jockell on June 14, 2017 at 11:28 am

        Thank you, good sir. Your website is a great service.



        • Dave Chesson on June 14, 2017 at 11:47 am

          Awesome to hear and thank you!



          • Alia Khan on June 20, 2017 at 2:45 pm

            So am i understanding it correctly that one can’t use any word that is in your title as one of your keywords? For example, book title: Turtle training – a keyword can’t be: How to train a turtle? – as it has the word turtle in it? I currently use a word in my title in all 7 of my keyword phrases – amazon hasn’t disallowed it but does this mean amazon is just ignoring my keywords? Thanks



          • Dave Chesson on June 20, 2017 at 2:55 pm

            Hi Alia, no it isn’t like that. It’s about direct match. As in, if your title is “Turtle Training” then your keywords, according to Amazon, shouldn’t be “Turtle Training.” But you can do “Training a Turtle” “How to train a Turtle” etc…



          • Alia Khan on June 20, 2017 at 2:58 pm

            Ah, ok thanks for clarifying this 🙂



  27. Tad Wojnicki on July 9, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    Dave, this article (book chapter, maybe?) is a virtual treasure throve of likely in-house secrets,,, It shows how much you dig the topic and cherish sharing it. I first “met” you on Alinka Rutkowska’s website, authorremake.com/ and got very impressed. Don’t lock it up, not yet!



    • Dave Chesson on July 9, 2017 at 9:27 pm

      Hi Tad! Awesome to hear and thanks for making my day. Lock it up? No way 😀



  28. ralph Lecessi on September 5, 2017 at 8:46 am

    Hi Dave. Luv this guide!! Very intuitive, and everything works as described. I have a few questions:

    1)- As we test our first pages for the keyword searches on Amazon, should we use Sort by Relevance option?

    2)- The Amazon Best Seller Rating that we use in “How strong are the books on the first page”, is this the first rank listed (Paid in Kindle Store) ?

    3)- You stated we should use KWFinder to look for an SEO between 20-25. Any guidance for the search result of KWFinder?

    4)- How do we apply SEO keywords? Do we cleverly embed them in the book description under Kindle eBook Details?

    Thanks!



  29. Anthony Kim on September 16, 2017 at 8:18 pm

    Hi Dave, seriously great article. Quick question for you: you mention that the relevance of Kindle keywords quickly dissipates 3 months after publishing. Does this mean that, if you were to re-optimize your keywords say, 6 months or a year after publication, then this re-optimization would not be of much impact?



    • Dave Chesson on September 17, 2017 at 2:24 pm

      Hi Anthony. Good question. In the 3 month period, Amazon tests you out near the top but also gives preferential treatment to new books that come in. However, if you prove that during that time period or even when a new books shows up, that your book is the book that people still purchase over others when they type in that keyword, you’ll sit at the top. Basically, Amazon wants to put the book that gets the best sales conversions at the top for a specific keyword. They’ll show a new book at the top from time to time, but if your book sells better than those, you’ll move right back up at the top and stay there till someone else beats you. However, if you show up and quickly drop, then changing keywords can potential help as well.



  30. Sibo on September 21, 2017 at 1:05 pm

    This has been very helpful, thank you so much!



    • Dave Chesson on October 13, 2017 at 3:14 pm

      Absolutely and glad to help!



  31. Sakura on October 13, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    “But to completely snub this simple tactic is like the Fellowship of the Ring not using the eagles to fly to Mordor…they still got there, but only after a ridiculously long period of serious struggles and some bumps along the way.”
    ARE YOU KIDDING ME? The eagles are NOT a taxi service! They are a highly intelligent species that have free will and their own form of government! Not only that, but do you think Sauron would have hesitated to shoot them all down the moment they were spotted in the sky? The purpose of the Fellowship of the Ring and the linchpin of the entire strategy decided on in Rivendell was to destroy the Ring in a mission of secrecy!



    • Dave Chesson on October 13, 2017 at 3:13 pm

      haha…fair enough.



  32. Thorsten Nesch on October 25, 2017 at 1:27 am

    just fyi free KWfinder is down to 2 a day



    • Dave Chesson on October 25, 2017 at 1:40 am

      Seriously? Ah…that’s not as cool anymore. 🙁 Used to be a perfect amount for the non-seo’ers out there. 🙁



dave2

Hey Guys, I’m Dave and when I am not sipping tea with princesses or chasing the Boogey man out of closets, I’m a Kindlepreneur and digital marketing nut – it’s my career, hobby, and passion.

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