Choosing The Smartest International Book Categories On Amazon

If you are new to publishing on Amazon Kindle, you need to get savvy about your category selection. Choosing the right categories can make all the difference to your book\s visibility. When you publish, you are given the option of selecting three categories, but there are actually simple ways to get your book added to even more – and in doing so, you are increasing the chances of your book being seen by your readers and beating your competition. 

One of the great ways to maximize your advantage is to make sure that you have taken advantage of each international Amazon market as well.

Not only can you select up to 10 categories in the US market, but a further 10 in each of the markets your book can be sold in globally too. 

But how do you choose them?

When you initially publish your book, you can see a set of BISACS – these are codes for the categories across all countries – but not the categories themselves. They are rather the industry-wide standard for classifying books on the site to help shops know where to place them.

You, as the author, can select a couple of BISACs, and in doing so, Amazon will then automatically choose what it seems to be the appropriate Amazon category in each of the individual markets. 

What’s important to understand is that the types and amounts of categories available vary from market to market. For example, the United States has nearly 6,000 categories, where the United Kingdom has just over 4,000.

Because of this, your book could appear in some entirely different categories then you want it to because of the automation. 

So how do you handle this?

You can override the automated system and instead select the ten best categories that fit your book. It is vital to note here that you should only choose relevant categories. Some authors have abused the system, and that’s why irrelevant books might show up in lesser-known varieties – as they put their books where the competition is low. 

With thousands to choose from, selecting the best categories for your book is not always a super simple process, and some research is required. You can do this by translating the keyword or key phrase that best sums up your book into different languages and using that to do an Amazon search in the relevant country’s market. You can then browse the books that show up in the search result and see which categories they appear in. However, you will only get to see three categories and not the category chains – which are much more helpful if you want to communicate with Amazon and get them to help ensure you are in the categories of your choosing. The chain is the roadmap to where it sits on the site i.e., Kindle-Shop > eBooks >Crimes, Thrillers & Mystery>Psychological Thrillers. So you may have to work that out before continuing.

Once you’ve identified the categories you want your book to be part of, you need to complete the following process:

Sing into your KDP account, then Contact Amazon here https://kdp.amazon.com/en_US/contact-us. From the list on the left, you need to select “Amazon Product Page and Expanded Distribution. From here, you will see an option to “Update Amazon Categories.” You need to choose the title go your book, the ASIN, which market (US, UK, DE, etc.), and the category you want to be added to or removed from.

Within 24 hours, you should be able to check if your book was added to the requested categories.

So there you have it. By following the above, you can add categories to your book in the different markets and give your book the best chance of being discovered by readers worldwide!

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