I came across an article today in my trusty Internet & Marketing Report magazine. On the surface, this piece, with the subtitle “Best ways to improve product page results by year-end,” doesn’t seem to have much to do with authors. It’s really written for people who run e-commerce websites with shopping carts and the like. And yet, I think there’s a lot that authors can learn from it.
Remember, one of the primary goals of an author website is to sell the book (or books). Some of the principles outlined in this article focus on how to sell products, which in the case of authors, is their book. Here are some of the tips that I think authors can benefit from:
- Include multiple calls to action. Don’t be afraid to have “Buy the book” links everywhere. If someone scrolls down to read a book description or review, you don’t want them to have to scroll back up to purchase the book.
- Post prices. Don’t make someone click through to Amazon, B&N or PayPal to find out how much your book costs. Display the information in a way that is easy for people to see.
- Optimize your pages. Put your book title in your URL, your title tag, and your page description. This will increase the likelihood that people who are interested in your book will wind up on your website … instead of, for example, another blog that simply reviewed your book.
- Write killer copy. This is a no-brainer. Make your copy easy for the eye to scan, and have it be chock full of bullets, bolded elements, etc… Grab your potential reader’s attention and don’t let it go!
- Share, share, share. Your site visitors are potential marketers. If they like your site, they may decide to share it with friends and family. So add buttons to “like,” “share,” “tweet,” “follow, ” or”+1″ wherever you can.
See? Maybe more authors should be thinking of their websites as smaller versions of the successful e-commerce sites out there. Move over, Amazon…