Whether you’re checking out the marketplace to publish your own books, or looking for great reads at a low price, knowing how to access and download the top 100 free ebooks on Amazon is important.
If you’re publishing your own ebooks, you may know that book sellers can’t actually list books for free or at $0.00 dollars in the Kindle store. However, publishers using KDP Select can decide to give their books away for free five days out each 90 day period.
Why Give Away Your Ebooks?
Why do authors give away their books? Quite simply, to help them find readers who will be interested in their other books. Well, that and get some book reviews or star ratings for the book they’re giving away.
So, if you’re a reader taking advantage of a free listing, and you really love the book — take time to check back into Amazon and let the author. This will help other readers find the best books as well, so you’re helping everyone.
The thing to keep in mind if you’re a new author is that getting “discovered” is likely the hardest thing you’ll have to do. If you have an advertising budget, you may be trying various channels to get the word out. Facebook and Amazon ads are two of the most popular, and for many authors, most effective. However, if you don’t have an advertising budget, it can be to your advantage to use the KDP Select program for the first 90 days after you release your book.
As well as the option to give your book away (or at a discounted price), KDP Select also adds your ebook to the Kindle Unlimited (KU) lending library. The good thing is that you are paid by how many pages are read by borrowers in KU. The bad thing is that how much you’re paid depends on how munch money is in the pool Amazon provides every month for this purpose.
How Important is Market Research to eBook Authors?
The single most important thing any author can do to help guarantee the success of a self-published (or traditionally published for that matter) book is to know the marketplace. Over the years, I’ve had students tell me they never read other books in the genre they’re writing. Why? To ensure they don’t accidentally copy the style or language or plot in their own books.
However, as you can tell from the success that Amazon has had by recommending books to readers based on their past purchases and reads, that’s not really the way the world works. It’s important to know the competition intimately! Typically I review several hundred books (that varies from reading cover-to-cover to scanning copies) in the genre I’m publishing before finishing my final edits. And I don’t just review any titles. I review titles that are best sellers, so I can see what readers are enjoying.
That’s why it’s important to be able to identify the hot titles by doing things like checking out Amazon’s Top 100 Paid and Top 100 Free books in the Best Sellers in the Kindle Store lists. Here’s the link, so you can give it a try!
Are there Other Ways for Authors to Do Market Research?
Yes, there are various ways to do market research in addition to identifying and reviewing the best sellers. My favorite is K-Lytics, which takes the work out of figuring out what’s selling on Amazon by doing an analysis and monthly reports. I also find their specific reports very useful. For example, the category of Children’s Books just moved into third place as the most popular category in the Kindle Store. How cool is that?
While understanding what’s inside best sellers, knowing who’s writing them is also an important part of your market research. One of the easiest ways to do that is to read Indie Author News on a regular basis. New to you? Here’s the link.
Remember, there’s something to learn from every indie (independent or self-published) author. Getting to know them in the virtual world can provide you with everything from writing tips to marketing tips, and of course, some amazing new books to read.