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Posts in Publishing
Tags and Likes–RIP

Without much fanfare Amazon took away the Tags and Likes for books. This was obviously going to happen, as it was mostly used for pushing books up in the search algorithm.

Unfortunately this also takes away all the Likes and Tags my books had collected from real readers. I understand why Amazon has to do it and it’s fine with me – it is their platform and they want to keep it fair for everyone.

However, there should be a better way of doing it – just deleting these sections and not telling anyone is not very customer friendly. Not many readers actually write a review, but many did click on the Like button. This feedback for me as an author is now gone.

Hot New Releases on Amazon

As I have just hit the Hot New Releases List in my Category for “The Ten Rules of Efficiency” for the first time I thought I do some research on the topic.

(Help me to keep my book up there – get your copy now: - it’s only $0.99 and will change your work forever)

Looking around the obvious places (KDP support, Goodreads, etc.) it seems that the general understanding is that you have to have a specific amount of sales in a specific amount of time to get listed in the Hot New Release section and you have to be new (obviously).

So how did I get into that spot? Well, first of all you need to pick the best category for your book. If you are in a generic category like “Management” your competition is very high – on the other hand “Time Management” is a lot more specific and the amount of new books is more limited – therefore my chances of getting into the list are much better.


When I released my book I started a “free” campaign for three days immediately and had over 1000 downloads. The book carried the momentum and slowly afterwards the sales started to pick up. After one week I hit the “Hot New Releases” spot.

So it seems there is no secret sauce, just sales and a little bit of planning (Category, Promotions).

What happened since I have been in the spot? Well, Sales picked up considerably. It’s a sweet spot to be in and probably one of the best Sales driving advertisements on Amazon. Unfortunately it is not something you can plan or bank on.


Tagging & Liking

Tags and Likes are powerful marketing tools on Amazon. They give your book more visibility and help interested potential buyers to find and judge your book.

Let’s look at the difference and importance of these tools.


The “Like” button on Amazon works fairly easy. People “Like” your book and others basically see this
as a counter when they look at your book.


 The more “Likes” the better. Be aware that if you have the same book in different formats “Likes” and “Tags” do not carry over. This means even though I got 38 “Likes” on the Kindle version of my son’s book “Into the light” the Paperback edition does not automatically have the same number of likes but has its own counter:


The same you will see when we look at tagging – this is not true for reviews however. Reviews do carry over from one version to the other.

(If you are offering your book internationally it gets even more confusing as there is no connection between the different country Amazon sites. The only connection is that you will see reviews mentioned on all other Amazon sites – but this works only in one direction and only for reviews. “Tags” and “Likes” are not universal and reviews from or do not show up on the site. This is something to be aware of, if you plan for an international release.)

But back to the “Like” button. People have to be logged in and can only “like” once. The counter goes up and that’s about it from a marketing point of view.

The “Like” is of course a lot less powerful as a review – but it is much better to have many “Likes” than just one or two. The “Like” is the most obvious notification to potential buyers, how many people are really interested in your product.



“Tags” are different from “Likes” in many ways. First of all, tags are less obvious to most customers.

You find them more or less on the bottom of the product page, and in many cases there are no tags at all (which is bad!). You can define your own tags (up to 15) but customers can also add tags. Make sure that you create the important tags for your book.

How to increase your “Likes” and “Tags”

Unfortunately not everyone who looks at your book or even buys your book is interested in promoting your book. Don’t be surprised, that you have decent sales figures, many promotional downloads but no “Likes” or “Tags”.

But you can improve your numbers by asking your fellow authors and interested readers for support. There are many websites that include discussions / forums on “Tag Exchanges” and “Like Exchanges”. Basically you provide your links like this:

Hi guys, please tag and like:

My Books:

Author Pages:

Thank you! Will return the favor! 

And you help other authors by returning the favor and like/tag their books. A good place to start, and a valuable community is – here you will find dedicated groups that help you with all questions related to promotion in general and “Tags” and “Likes” in particular – one group that I recommend is the “How to promote your book on Amazon” group.

From the list of discussions you see immediately what the main tool of Amazon marketing is:

Besides „Tags” you’ll find many other groups and discussion threads who will help you with pushing the visibility of your books up in Amazon rankings. Here is an example list of books/author pages/tags and reviews (I will go into reviews and review voting in its own chapter):

This is a list you should have available for your own books to easily inform others so that they can help you without having to search all over Amazon – remember you want their help – make it easy for them!

1. Author Pages:

2. My Books:

3. Tags:

4. Reviews: