A good author friend of Mrs. PG asked her if signing books up for KDP Select was worth it. Mrs. PG asked PG to answer the question.
Of course PG complied but (as usual) didn’t do exactly what Mrs. PG requested.
Instead, he tried to distill what he’s heard (or thinks he’s heard) from a lot of visitors to The Passive Voice about today’s consensus concerning KDP Select with a warning that everything can change, so these aren’t cast in stone.
Here’s what PG thinks most indie authors think:
- One of the basic elements in an author’s decision is whether he/she is selling a lot of ebooks outside of Amazon. If you’re selling 40% of your ebooks on Nook, you definitely don’t want to turn those royalties off to sell exclusively on Amazon.
- The free pricing promotion used to be the best part of Select because it could goose sales rank and push a book into the top 100 in a genre or higher for much better visibility. Lately, free pricing has lost its luster in spurring “sales” because a lot of authors are doing it. Authors suspect many readers download free books that they never read, so authors don’t get many flow-over sales from free books into paid books. Additionally, some authors and analysts believe Amazon has modified its sales rank algorithm to give less weight to free “sales” than it does to paid sales.
- Some people generate quite a few borrows from the Prime Lending program and regard those as the equivalent of sales. This seems to be the biggest draw at the moment, but its success varies a lot from author to author. Borrows do seem to be treated similarly to paid sales for Amazon sales rank purposes.
- Nobody seems to be selling much in India, so the higher level of royalties there doesn’t mean much.
- Fewer authors are putting all their books into Select. Typically, they’ll list one book to see what happens with borrows during the 90 day period, then take it out of Select to see if there is any increase in sales.
If your results vary or you think PG is full of hooey, please chime in with a comment.