After doing hours of research to find that perfect category for your ebook, you discover that you just cannot select it?
As it turns out, Amazon doesn’t offer every existing category when you go publish your book.
Well, you wouldn’t be alone in this frustration. However, there is hope. There are a couple ways in which you can ensure that your book is included into the “secret category list” that amazon doesn’t offer you.
In this article, you will learn:
- The Importance of these secret categories
- Step by step on how to unlock them
Okay, let me be clear. The list isn’t secret. As matter of fact, they even publish a page to help you find out what categories exist that aren’t offered, but we will get into this later.
The point is, they don’t exactly make this information public unless you know what to look for…or, you’re a fan of the Kindlepreneur.com 😉
WHY SHOULD YOU DESIRE THE SECRET CATEGORIES?
Simply put, these secret categories are not selectable in the KDP dashboard…that’s why.
For this reason, they will definitely have lower competition than the available ones on the Amazon dashboard.
Be sure to check out my article on how to find low competition categories that will help you to reach best-seller status here.
I don’t have any solid numbers, but I don’t think it is too far off from the truth to believe that only 35% or less of self-publishers know about the ‘secret’ category list, and only a smaller percentage actually know how to unlock them.
That means that more then 65% of all kindle self-publishers target the pre-generated list of categories that you find in the Amazon dashboard.
Starting to see why unlocking that list can be important?
HOW TO UNLOCK THE SECRET AMAZON CATEGORIES
When you go to upload your book for the first time, you’ll be offered a select list of categories to choose from. You will probably notice that these categories are very broad and do not include every subject that you see other books listing for.
Amazon does this because they want new books to be included in well-known e-book lists.
Over time, Amazon will sometimes automatically add a book to a secret category because it feels as though it belongs. However, if you’re like me, then you don’t want to just leave it up to fate and hope that Amazon will one day decide to include your book in a particular category.
So, to get your book showing for the category you want, just follow these two simple steps:
In some cases, a specific keyword must be used in order to unlock it. Check out this Amazon page which actually lists which categories require what keyword in order to join that category:
If you can legitimately place that category name into your title, subtitle, and/or summary, it should also help to persuade the Amazon algorithm that your e-book is best served under that particular category. In a way, this is a sign that your book is about that particular subject and should therefore be included in the category.
These two steps will help Amazon to see your book as a part of that category.
However, if that doesn’t work and your book isn’t automatically added into the particular category, there is one more step in which you can get Amazon to notice it.
Contact Amazon and ask them to include your book into that particular category. Amazon will then look at your book, it’s cover, and the information you placed on your product page and will make a determination as to whether or not your book will be suitable inside a particular category.
Be sure that this category is a legitimate fit for your book or else otherwise Amazon will reject your claim and might even penalize you for such a request. So don’t be SPAMMY!
How to Contact Author Central
What many of you don’t know is the path in which to get them to notice your book. To contact Amazon so as to include your book into their secret category list, perform the following:
First go to Author Central: https://authorcentral.amazon.com/gp/help/contact-us
On the Contact Us Form:
- Under “Select An Issue” select “My Books”.
- Under “Select Details” select “Update Information About a Book”.
- In the fields that appear, select “Browse Categories”
- Then “I want to browse categories in the Product Details section.
The Category path should look like this like this:
# Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Romance > Anthologies
Once you’ve submitted your email request, give it a few days and check to see whether or not Amazon placed in that category.
In most cases though, authors will see the fruits of the email labor in a matter of 24 hours…which is nice.
So, there you have it. Simple steps towards unlocking the coveted secret categories of the Amazon Kindle world. I hope you enjoyed this and please comment below on how these process worked for you.