It’s been a week and I’ve learned some things. Fortunately, already knowing this is a slow process, the ebook sales are occurring but not as fast as I’d prefer. But they are happening and that’s good. What’s even better is nearly 400 people have checked it out in just a week’s time. The first 35% of the book is a free sample, so perhaps many of those viewers will become customers once they’ve gotten that far. Below are some individual stats from retailers, and just to be clear, I didn’t ask friends and family to buy the book because I wanted the results to be from perfect strangers.
Smashwords.com – I don’t know how many views it’s had, but the sample of the book has been downloaded 19 times and 3 of those samples have turned into sales (good!). It’s also been linked in to 3 libraries which means those viewers don’t want to forget about it. (Maybe they’ve got a few books going and would like to check back to it soon.) Overall, I’m thrilled with the sales to download ratio but wish there was a stat for views.
Amazon.com – here the book had 2 sales in the past 5 days. Amazon doesn’t approve ebooks as quickly as the others so a bit slower getting listed with them, usually between 48 and 72 hours and even then have to wait another day or so before the description appears (and of course those sales occurred after the description was posted). Unfortunately Amazon doesn’t have any stats for views or samples downloaded so nothing to report there. The book is currently number 4 ranked in the category of Desktop Publishing, so that’s terrific. Any book in the top five will show up to viewers checking out a specific subject. Being on the first page is ten times better than page two and a hundred times better than page three (for any site). If it can stay there and move up in other categories simultaneously, that would be fantastic.
Scribd.com – so far scribd shows 132 views which is great. I don’t believe any sales have happened though. Hard to tell with Scribd since they don’t have an open indicator that says zero. I assume something would pop up if a sale happened. My other novels have been on scribd for 6 weeks and have 143 views collectively and also zero sales. Again, I didn’t expect scribd to be a great place for selling but good for views. Let them see the first 35% and maybe they’ll buy at Amazon or Smashwords. Scribd is so chock full of freebies, that sales there may be really tough.
Myebook.com – this has been a delightful surprise. Hasn’t turned into any sales yet, but it’s already had 173 views. I also uploaded one of my novel’s, Jim’s Life, at the same time and that’s had 202 views. I had sort of forgotten The Little Universe was there already, and it’s had 790 views in just a few months. All three books have only been available in full version and for sale for one week so understandably no sales yet but very happy with the viewing audience. I underestimated this outfit.
Youpublish.com – the book there had 59 views and 1 sale. No bad, actually better than expected. I also learned that youpublish now pays a 70% royalty to authors when they used to just pay 50%.
My own website – fortunately 1 sale has already occurred here, which is cool because that means about a 90% royalty after the PayPal transaction cost. It’s had roughly 42 unique visitors and roughly 70 pages viewed. I say roughly because the stats counter seems doesn’t work so well with AOL users and some other folk who maybe have cookies disabled or things like that.
So the overall numbers indicate approximately 425 known views (no idea what Amazon stats are for this) and 7 sales. You’re right, it’s a decent number of views but we’d love to see the sales higher. And yet, it’s got to start somewhere and hopefully pick up momentum, so any sales in the first week are actually a good sign.
In other news, I created an Addendum’s page on both this WordPress Blog and the other main site for anyone who wants to add tidbits of wisdom or experience to help all of us in this process. Please feel free to check those pages out now and especially in the future as there’s not much feedback yet.
The other part to that… is there’s also a Member’s Page for the forum. I didn’t ask friends and family to sign up because I wanted it to be absolutely authentic with just other ebook authors, and so it’s still kinda bleak with me as the only current member. Oh well, hopefully that will improve. (It should as it will be a good place for authors to market themselves.)
These things take time.
Finally, still not showing up super high in the Google rankings. If you Google “Jason Matthews,” my sites or references are well represented in the first page of results (I’m not the signer, he’s another guy). The term “sell ebooks” still doesn’t show me until the fourth page, and that’s a Smashwords listing. This is however, highly competitive and so I’m okay with being on page 4. Google rising takes time but would like to be on page 1 in one month, so maybe if I just follow the advice in the book that’ll happen.
Thanks for reading. Let me know if I can help with your endeavors. firstname.lastname@example.org