Your Books Page and How to Optimize Your Point of Sale
Episode #4 of the course How to market your book online by John Robin
I hope I’ve got you reflecting on your author website from yesterday’s discussion on the limit of five links. Today, I’m going to go into detail on the books page to help you garner better visitor interest for your books.
If you have more than one book, then you should create a page for each book and list them as drop-menu items under the “books” link—this way, you can apply what follows to each book.
Your books page should consist of (in order):
• Your book cover
• Summary copy
• First call to action
• Second call to action
• Positive reviews you might have obtained
• Last call to action
Now, let’s break these down:
Cover: Your book cover (low resolution, under 1MB, for quicker load times), set to a width of about 300 pixels. Align the image to the left or right of the text components so readers can be reading the caption/summary when the cover catches their attention.
Caption: Usually a bold header font, meant to highlight your book in under 80 characters. For example, if Stephen King reviewed your book and said, “There’s a new king of horror in town,” that would be a great caption! Or, if your book is like Terminator but with steel dragons, you might have something like: “In the year 2034, the dragons of steel will rise. Are you ready?”
Summary copy: The 150-250 word description that you have to write for Amazon (on a print book, it’s the summary found on the back). Make sure this is concise, compelling, and clear. I highly recommend you hire a copywriter to do this for you, but if you are doing it yourself, here’s a helpful article.
First call to action: Links to where readers can buy your book, that reads, “Buy the book,” or a small graphic with this text if you want to have an even more professional edge. The idea here is if the reader is interested after reading the summary, they have the option to buy.
Excerpt: The opening three to five pages of your book. The purpose of adding this excerpt is so your book page can give the reader a similar experience as being in a bookstore, holding your book: 1) a cover to catch their attention, 2) the back summary to intrigue them, 3) a flip to the opening to read a few pages and decide if it captures them.
Second call to action: This is a repetition of the first call. The idea here is if they were on the fence at the first call, but now, having read to the end of the excerpt, they might be interested in buying.
Positive reviews: After the excerpt, you might include reviews to further strengthen confidence. You should condense longer discussion in reviews using ellipses (…), so you can highlight important parts.
Last call to action: Repeat of the first and second call. The idea here is that if your reader is at the bottom of the page now, their option is scroll back up or check the book out and see if they want to buy.
Use the books page as a marketing opportunity to simulate the experience of flipping through your book in a store. Tomorrow, we’ll talk about the author bio—not just for your website, but your entire platform.
Book Marketing Is Dead by Derek Murphy
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