Your Amazon Author Page ~~ Is it Working for You?

Written By: Admin - Mar• 26•14
Jackie Weger

Follow Jackie on Amazon

When it comes to social media authors leap onto  to Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest and a myriad of other social media platforms and often overlook the power and presentation of an Amazon Author Page. Inside Author Central is where all of your books are listed and the place to create your bio. When an author launches a book and begins to promote a title, more often than not, the information on your Amazon Author Page bio is what lands in a promotion highlight.  When you guest post on blogs, very often the only link to your name is your Amazon Author Page.

Here’s why: Savvy Bloggers are not going to send their followers to your blog. Yes, a guest blog article will send a viewer to your books’ page because the savvy blogger has installed his/her Amazon Associate’s link to your book ASIN. That is how many if not most blogs earn a few pennies for site maintenance. And almost all promotion sites whether FREE or FEE want those pennies.

I recently read a guest post on Indies Unlimited. It was interesting and I wanted to learn more about the author, I wanted to read more of the author’s blog. The tag at the end of the article sent me to the guest blogger’s Amazon author page. It was a DEAD END. There was nothing in the bio that steered me to the

New Release 130 Reviews

New Release 130 Reviews

author’s blog, Facebook page or Twitter–all of the SOEs in which I could message the author, or follow.  All that was left to me was to Google the author’s name. Guess what? There are nine people with the exact same name as the author. It took me five minutes to click through and check the names until I found the author. What a time waster!

One of  the most savvy authors in our indie universe is David Gaughran. Every indie author needs to read his book, Let’s Get Visible.  Gaughran puts paid to misinformation and myths floating around in the indie universe such as: “It’s well-known fact that Amazon uses the number of book reviews in rating best seller stats.” Wrong! Gaughran points out book ratings are due to sales. Period. Sales are to Amazon what Reviews are to Readers. Here is Gaughran’s  Amazon Author bio…

Sign up to Dave’s New Release Mailing List here: (Simply cut-and-paste that address into your browser. Your email will never be shared and you will only be contacted when a new book is out.) David Gaughran is an Irish writer, living in London, who spends most of his time travelling the world, collecting stories. He runs the publishing blog Let’s Get Digital and the South American history site South Americana, has a regular column at Indie Reader, and his work has been featured in the Huffington Post, The Sunday Times, and the Irish Times.

Even this masterful indie author guru didn’t get it right.  His first words to the reader are: Sign up for my newsletter. Hey, David! Perhaps I want to know a little more before I add another newsletter to my already crammed inbox. David’s bio is speaking to authors, not readers. Gaughran mentions his blog and his history site. But, again, to get there, I’d have to Google. Well, I ain’t. And I love the guy.  It is NOT the done thing to use parenthesis in a bio or book description. So, don’t.

Amazon will not allow a live link inside an author bio, but you can as David has done, list a cut and paste link. That is easy. I wish he’d add the links to Let’s Get Visible Blog and the South American history site. I’m a historian and I’ve been visiting South of our Borders for over fifty years. I have an intrepid interest in the S.A. culture, artists and authors.

Plus, I love books in those settings.

Some authors use the AZ author bio section  for everything going on in their books, when the next in a series is due, the problems with writing it and nothing about themselves that speaks to the reader. Amazon provides a specific place for this data in From the Author: The info can be updated so it is not static. Some authors list every school they have ever attended, all of their degrees up to a Ph.D and every dang job they’ve held in the past twenty years in their author bio. It reads like a resume. Just a reminder. The reader is not hiring you for a job. It’s fine to mention you graduated from Georgia Tech and spent your life building bridges all over the world as long as you finish with, “the bridge I most enjoyed building was from engineer to writing adventure thrillers.”  That last bit piques my interest because I know the author has traveled and I’m likely to be taken on a thrill of a ride. He’s been there and prolly not using Google Earth to locate a back alley in Marrakesh. Or make the mistake of having a character toss twenty Euros to a cabbie for a ride to Orly. Last time I was in Paris, a cabbie  wanted 130 Euros from hotel to train station. Parisian cabbies ain’t cheap. Take the underground!

The rule of thumb for Amazon bios and back cover bios is: Compose in third person. Here’s a bio I discovered recently on Amazon.

I wrote (title) ten years ago and put it on a shelf in my closet. I decided to publish it on Amazon. I hope you like reading it.

Sure I will, dust bunnies and all.

There are several places where you can speak to readers, followers and fans in first person. One is in interviews. The second is on Facebook and the third, best of all, is at the back of your book in From the Author. Or,  in a Note From the Author. You can label it anything you want and you can get a bit more personal.

The Merry Go Round by Donna Fasano

The Merry Go Round by Donna Fasano

I’m a romance writer. I use USA Today Best Selling author  Donna’s Fasano’s bio on her Amazon Author page as a guide. Donna updates her bio often. I like it and readers and fans like it because we can find her. We can find her blog and her Twitter account. We can message her, tweet we read her  book and  loved it. We can leave a comment on her Facebook page. Donna’s Amazon Author page is not a Dead End.

Of course, you are reading this and saying to yourself: Hey! I can write what I want in my bio and how I want to. Sure you can. But are you speaking to the reader? Are you speaking to your fans? You can say, “Well, best selling authors write their Amazon bios in first person.” Some do-or their editors do. When your title is #1 on Amazon, NYTs, Kirkus, B&N and iTunes–go for it. But, it is not the Rule of Thumb.

Amazon suggests an author reveal some neat tidbit about yourself.  One of the most interesting author tidbits I’ve ever come across is:  She’s a three-time winner on“Jeopardy!” Stop right there! I went to Lorrie Farrelly’s book’s page and bought her books. I was not disappointed. The girl can win Jeopardy! and write, too?


Terms of Surrender by Lorrie Farrelly

She laid words on a page in Terms of Surrender that kept me enthralled.  I read it and went back for seconds. I didn’t know Lorrie when I bought her books, but I do now. Had to look her up on Google. She and her books were worth the search. Her bio caught my interest and I bought her books. Her bio works. Here’s the snag: Lorrie has a huge presence in the indie cyberworld and a large following but you can’t tell it from her bio because there isn’t a single SOE link. (Prob’ly will be tomorrow after she reads this!)  Or, she might shoot me. Meanwhile, say hello to Lorrie on Facebook.

Here the skinny: You know who you are, your current followers and fans know who you are and most of them will be there for your next book. But one of the most important ways to expand your readership and followers is to create an uncluttered Amazon Author Page that speaks to your readers and makes it easy for them to find you. Update it often to keep your current fans interested and pique the interest of new fans. Do remember your Amazon bio is the bio mostly likely to be quoted and sent out on RSS feeds.

If none of the above convinces you to create a well-written bio for your amazon author page, listen to Michael Levin in the Huffington Post

“Amazon distributes every book in the world…every minute of the day. Distribution from a New York publisher means that your book will be in some Barnes & Nobles — not all, just some — for about four to six weeks, before it is returned for a full refund and replaced by more books from the same publishing house. Which means that an author must hope that enough people in his or her niche audience will wander into the right B&Ns during that brief window, find that book among the 99,999 other titles and buy it, to justify “distribution” lasting longer than, say, Brazil in the World Cup. Sorry. If you link your website or social media to your book’s Amazon page, you will have better distribution than any author in the history of mankind.”  Same goes for your Amazon Author page. Don’t procrastinate! Get it done.

Two last things!  Preview your bios for misspelled words and punctuation. Do a trial run: Check that when your links are cut and pasted that they WORK.  Y’all have a good one. Comments are open and Welcome.

@Copyright 2015 Jackie Weger


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  1. Mike Markel says:

    Thanks, Jackie, for the excellent advice. I’ve already made some revisions on the basis of your ideas.

    • Jackie Weger says:

      Mark! I love it when an author reads a tip, a suggestion and/or a “must do” and goes proactive. You are one of the smart ones. For every hundred authors who read the article only one or two will actually review his/her Amazon Central Author page and revise to make it reader enticing. You’ll notice Donna Fasano’s comment: She is a USA Today and Amazon Montlake Best Selling Author. Donna is the epitome of proactive. Thanks for stopping in and commenting. We appreciate it.
      Jackie Weger

    • Jackie Weger says:

      Actually, those are not my ideas, but advice and suggestions from the experts and best-selling authors. I follow and try to emulate the advice of successful authors. By experts, I mean indie authors who have walked-the-walk before they talk.

  2. Donna Fasano says:

    Jackie, thank you for using my Amazon Author page as a sample! I’m very flattered. AND I’m happy to say that I just added a book trailer to my Amazon Author page. It’s fabulous and I hope everyone will go take a look at it.

    Authors do need to make the most of their Amazon Author page. It’s THE place Kindle readers go to learn more about an author.

    Great information here.

  3. Jackie, this is a great article. As a blogger and reviewer I have often attempted to link an author and their book to their Amazon author page only to discover there isn’t one or there is nothing in it I can use. Jackie is correct about making the page appear as if it were a resume. The reader is looking for entertainment not a job applicant. I don’t really care where you went to college or what your degrees are. I want to know what you write, what inspires you, something personal about you, where I can contact you and letting readers know if your work was recognized by winning awards or making a bestseller list. I mean, really, who cares where Agatha Christie went to college or how many degrees she had? Every bit of Jackie’s article is spot on. I have found myself spinning in circles on the internet when I shouldn’t have to work that hard to find you. I want to help you get noticed and the best place to get you connected to my blog is through the Amazon author page. The importance of this can not be stressed enough!!! This will help your sales greatly!! Great advice folks- listen up!

  4. Mary Smith says:

    Lots of great advice here, Jackie. Thank you. I shall now go off and digest it all before putting it into practice.

    • Jackie Weger says:

      I am glad you weighed in, Mary because you are on another continent. You have Amazon UK and focus there, which is natural. But, it is critical for those indie authors who live outside Amazon US to create a bio that speaks to readers who buy on AZ US. Indie authors who do not have access, need to create their bios and send it to Amazon to post on AZ US. Amazon is happy to do that. Contact Amazon via your local Author Central account to make it happen.

  5. Jenny Harper says:

    I found this really useful. I actually printed it off last week, and it’s finally made it to the top of the action pile! Loads of good common sense – thanks!

  6. Sarah Lane says:

    Thanks Jackie…going to fix mine up right now!

  7. Dale Furse says:

    Another post packed with good advice. I’ll refurbish my Amazon page asap. Thanks, Jackie. Keep these informative posts coming.

  8. Cherime MacFarlane says:

    Immediately went and fixed my bio.

  9. Excellent post Jackie! It is the second one from you that I read with useful advice on how to set up your Amazon page. Of course I took it the first time round to amend the said page accordingly, including the editorial reviews section. Also, I bought Let’s Get Visible after your recommendation last time and have now read it from cover to cover. As I am a newbie it sort of went over my head a bit and so a couple of more reads are to follow….but I did get lots of insights and useful tips from the first read! You offer a wealth of information with every post, Jackie! Thank you for sharing and as always, wish you success honey 🙂

  10. Rosie Dean says:

    Very interesting article.

    I’ve noticed that links in bios do not work. You have to copy and paste a link from Amazon into the browser.

    Also, it’s surprising how many authors have not completed their author bio page. I wonder why they wouldn’t?


  11. Deborah Cox says:

    I’m updating my bio asap! Thanks for the info!

  12. […] to your Webpage/blog, Twitter and Facebook. Four links is ideal. More than four is too many.  Go HERE to read some great tips and see examples of  Amazon Author pages that pique a reader’s […]

  13. […] ask for feedback and respect it. They share information. Every single successful author has an Amazon Author Page and updates it regularly. They refresh their book covers. Above all, they don’t whine in […]

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  15. […] Author Central, build an interesting Author bio page. A wealth of tips here. The do’s and don’t’s. Here is what I know: Only one percent of indie authors […]

  16. […] Once your book is live, do you download the first copy of both digital and print? Nope. Because I see indie books often with no sales rank. And a book won’t have a sales rank until it has been downloaded. Is your author bio short and aimed at readers, or a job description?  I discovered an author bio today that went on for 2000 words. Took me longer to plow through the thing than the sample book feature. Author bio suggestions HERE. […]

  17. Livia Quinn says:

    LOL, I’ve already made other changes based on your blog posts for the past couple months and now I need to revamp my bio. Question: if you use Donna’s as a patter and you don’t have the awards and accolades, what do you suggest? Just keep that part professional, short and sweet? I purchased Let’s Get Visible in a bundle. Now I need to actually read them!

    Thanks for the awesome post.

  18. Johnno Payne says:

    This article caused me to go to my amazon biography and change it completely. My biography now tells a little story about me and how I came about to writing my stories.

  19. I confess to thinking I had a great bio – even had it checked by a pro and edited it so all was cool.

    After reading your article, I arrogantly went to gloat about how perfect my bio was – and well, poo, the long irrelevant introduction has probably been turning off readers for months.

    Thanks to you, I rewrote it today.

    • Jackie Weger says:

      Nice to meet you, Jason Stanley aka Lori Jean: You are so not alone. After a book description, our indie author bios are the most difficult to compose. There is so much misinformation and ehow to manage our indie authorships. Amazon bios and back page of print editions are best in third person–because those are what promoters/bloggers quote. When we think ‘bio,’ we think ‘resume.’ They are not the same. Less is always better. And all the other bit and pieces can be used in interviews, etc. It won’t go to waste. Adding this: Smart you to revise your Amazon bio. You acted. Many don’t. Thank you for sharing. Wishing you much succees with your books.

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