What Is A Good Amazon Sales Rank For Books?

Figuring out what a good Amazon Sales Rank is for your books can be difficult to determine. You first need to understand what a certain ranking means in terms of overall demand. As well as ensuring that you are getting an accurate representation of that demand when looking at sales rank data.

So, how do you figure that out? By examining your specific book category to determine what is the average rank using a few key pointers that we will discuss below. Including:

  • What Is a Good Amazon Sales Rank for Books In Your Category?
  • Understanding Why The Amazon Sales Rank Is So Important
  • What Are the Basics of Understanding Amazon Sales Rank?
  • How Are Amazon Sales Ranks Affected By Sales?
  • How Many Sales Does It Take to Hit #1 on Amazon?
  • What Are The Best Ways To Get Your Books Ranking Higher on Amazon? 

What Is a Good Amazon Sales Rank for Books In Your Category?

Among the most investigated metrics used by Amazon is the Amazon Sales Rank, or BSR (Amazon Best Sellers Rank). Many Amazon authors indeed have difficulty getting their books to maintain a good rank. That is why there is such a love-hate relationship with BSR.

A book’s ASR (Amazon Sales Rank ) determines whether it is popular or not within a particular category. Hence is directly tied to the number of sales or page reads your book gets.  Each category will have a different rank. For instance, a 10,000 ranking in the Contemporary Romance or Epic Fantasy categories is amazing as these are extremely competitive categories, but a 10,000 ranking in Crystallography, however, would be less impressive in comparison.

When it comes to the overall Amazon store, however, most people consider anything below 100,000 to be a good rank. This typically means you are at least selling a few copies periodically. 

By the time you reach, say, from 300,000 to 700,000 ranks, the book is kind of okay in terms of rank. This does not mean that it will not sell. Remember, rankings can be fickle, your books may sell a ton within a day and drop like hot cakes as the sales ranks are updated hourly. 

Why Is The Amazon Sales Rank For Books So So Important?

BSR and ASR matter to sellers for multiple reasons. As a new author in the publishing world, it is a sign to new readers that you’ve written a book that is selling and helps you look credible enough for them to take a chance on you.

It also tells you where you stand in the online marketplace. Think of it as a report card. What is the impact of your previous semester’s grade on the one to come? Absolutely nothing! All they do is show you how you performed previously. They tell the people you show that you have a grasp of what you are doing. 

The same can be said for the Amazon ranks. An extremely high Amazon sales rank can deter a potential reader from buying your book as it screams to them that your book isn’t selling well and makes them question why that may be so.

What Are the Basics of Understanding Amazon Sales Rank?

The Amazon Sales Rank works like a golf score: The lower it is, the better your book is selling. At any given point in time, the #1 bestselling book on Amazon can change; it is all based on the book sales for that given period. It is completely possible for a book to become an Amazon #1 bestseller for days, weeks, or even just minutes.

Amazon sales ranks, for books, are updated hourly, but it may take up to 48 hours for them to appear. The rankings are based on both historical and recent sales activity, with recent activity weighing more heavily. 

Fun Fact: Sales over the life of the book are not included in the ranking. For instance, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was ranked #276 in books when I wrote this post. One of the best-selling books of all time, but if the popularity of this book were factored into Amazon’s rankings, the Harry Potter books might have remained in the top spots forever.

According to Amazon’s rankings, sales are occurring (or not) right now, so any book can strive for the #1 ranking, regardless of how fleeting its presence might be there.

How Are Amazon Sales Rankings Affected By Sales?

Here are a few general rank guidelines to keep n mind as the number fluctuates over time:

1. A Book With An ASR Greater Than 1 Million Usually Hasn’t Sold In A While.

As little as a week may have passed since it last sold or it may have sold only a few copies on Amazon. The longer it has been since anyone bought a book, the higher its ranking will be.

Those books with sales in the 8 million range or more may have had only one sale on Amazon, whereas books with sales in the 3 million range may have been sold numerous times, but their last sale may have been months ago.

2. If Your Book Is Purchased, It Will Immediately Shoot Up To A Ranking Of 100,000 To 200,000.

Sales boost your rank temporarily. What determines if it remains that way is whether or not sales continue to roll in. The book may fall back into the 300,000 to 500,000 range by the following day, and return to the one million or more rankings within four or five days if only one copy sells.

As long as a book’s rank stays between 100,000 and 200,000, this indicates the book is selling at least a copy per day.

How Many Sales Does It Take to Hit #1 on Amazon?

This is a question that many authors wonder about, especially in the early stages of their careers. Unfortunately, there is no clear-cut answer. The truth is, it depends not only on how well your book sells but also on how other books do on any given day.

The day that you release your book also plays a key role in whether or not your sales rank drops low enough for you to make Amazon’s bestseller list. So, if you are trying to make the Amazon Bestseller’s List you will want to be abreast of what else is being released as well as what’s going on in the world on your release day. 

For example, attempting your one-day sales boost and release on the same day as a bigger author like Stephen King or Nora Roberts releases a new book could compromise your chances of getting that #1 one spot if you write in those same categories.

In most people’s experience, if you want to move from a four-figure ranking to a three-figure ranking on the same day, you will need hundreds or even thousands of sales. For a single-digit ranking, you will need even more.

What Are The Best Ways To Get Your Books Ranking Higher on Amazon? 

The best way to rank higher on Amazon is to have a well-optimized listing, use quality branding (good cover and keyword-rich title), and provide good content.

Running ads, getting a professional edit on your book, garnering good reviews, and building your backlist (writing more books) are also great ways to get more copies sold and boost your Amazon Sales Rank organically.

References

Sales Ranking (amazon.com)

How to Become an Amazon Bestseller: A Guide To Reaching #1 (scribemedia.com)

Amazon Sales Rank Explained: What it is? & 12 Steps to Improve BSR (sellerapp.com)

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