What Is Amazon Author Rank and How Can You Climb It?

This past week, Amazon added a new feature to the site. It’s author rank, and it basically ranks authors by books sold, much like it has always ranked reviewers for how their reviews are rated.

Amazon calls this new feature, which is still in beta, the “definitive list of best-selling authors on Amazon.com” According to Amazon, “this list makes it easy for readers to discover the best-selling authors on Amazon.com overall and within a selection of major genres.”

The information on Amazon Rank is updated hourly and is based on the sales of all of an author’s books on Amazon.com. The top 100 authors overall, and the top 100 authors in each genre, will be displayed at any given time.

Obviously, all authors are probably clamoring right now to figure out a) how they currently rank; and b) how they break the top 100 in their genre.

The first one is easy. Log in to your Amazon Central account and click on the Rank tab. The information there dates back to September 28, 2012 and you can see a cool chart demonstrating how your author ranking fluctuates from day to day.

As far as the second, there’s certainly no magic bullet that can make you J.K. Rowling by tomorrow. But here are a few ideas on how you can start climbing the Amazon Author Rank…

1. Sell your e-books at a steep discount. Obviously, reducing the price of your book will help you sell more copies, which can then increase your author rank.

2. Publish more books, short stories, etc… The Amazon Author Rank is based on the total number of sales of your books on Amazon. That means that someone who has published one book is going to have a much harder time climbing the ranks than someone who has published 20 short stories.

3. Market, market, market. Make sure that your Facebook page, your author website, your blog, and any other online publications include a picture of your book cover with an easy link to purchase the book through Amazon. It sounds simple, but you’ll be surprised how many authors make it more difficult than it should be for someone to click once and buy a copy.

Remember, the higher your rank, the more likely someone is to find your books. So it may be worth a little extra effort to get your ranking up a bit. You may never crack the top 100, but it’s worth a shot!