When a tech-savvy friend confessed that she loved my book yet had no idea how to leave a review on Amazon, I decided to write this for her and anyone else who may not know. Books depend on word-of-mouth and mouse. It’s part of my job description now to ask readers to leave book reviews the way politicians ask for votes: constantly.
I have not gone this far. So far.
As we all know, Amazon is the hands-down leader in online book sales. Remember when they started? Books were all they sold. The more reviews you leave on various sites the better, but if you only leave one, make it on Amazon. As of this writing, it is not required that you purchase a book through them to review it there. You only need to have bought something on Amazon and have an account. I encourage the “3 out of 10 Rule.” If, at the very least, three out of ten books you read are bought at a brick-and-mortar bookstore, those stores will survive. Bookstores are important cultural meccas for every community and need all the support they can get — especially with Amazon as their competition. Number two in importance of reviews is Goodreads.com (which is owned by Amazon). Good old word-of-mouth (telling friends, bookstores and libraries about a book you love) is just as important as that Amazon review.
Online book reviews do three things.
1) Though everything is subjective, reviews let potential readers know if they should consider investing their time and money in a book.
2) The more reviews, the more the book is lifted in search engine algorithms. Even if a book has lots of reviews, if the reviews slow down, so does the search engine. All books need to be fed. Be generous with your morsels. Just so you know, the longer the review, the more weight it’s given in searches. But even one word is better than no words.
3) It makes you feel good to rejoice in a book you love!
What if you have negative feelings about a book? Does it feel good to vent them? Not for me. I know how hard it is to write a book and have it published. And, see #1. It’s subjective. Why hurt the feelings and ratings of someone whose book just isn’t my cup of tea? There have been many a bestseller I found unreadable. You are welcome to adopt this philosophy with my tomes. No like-ee. No tell-ee.
So here we go.
Find the book’s page on Amazon by typing the title in the Amazon search bar. Or type in the author’s name and go to their Amazon Author Page (which you can find on any book page if you click on their name in blue under a title)
The Amazon Author Page looks like this and gives you an overview of the author with features like their bio, videos, events, discussions, and a “FOLLOW” button under their main photo. Click on the book cover image of the book you want to review.
Once on the page, scroll down to where you see “Write a customer review” and click on it.
If you don’t want to use your real name, once you click on the “Write a customer review” button, look in the upper right corner to change your reviewer name.
Your review does not appear instantly. It must be checked first. Amazon may not post a review where the reviewer says they know the author. However, if the author likes to talk publicly about their writing and interface with book clubs, then telling friends, bookstores and libraries that you know the author can be a win-win for everyone.
Thank you for reading this and spreading the word about your favorite books. Feel free to start with a glowing review right here. 🙂