Series Changes with Kindle

Series

Kindle is changing the way that series appear at Amazon:

  • The change will make it easier for customers to see that a given book is part of a series.
  • The change will clearly show the volume number to help customers find the next volume of a series and to read a series in order.
  • The change will show the series name to help customers find all of the volumes of a given series.

Example

You publish an e-book with Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) and enter the following information in the publishing fields:

  • Title: Mr. Wrong Feels Oh So Right
  • Series Title: Bad Romance
  • Volume: 3

When people search for your e-book on Amazon, they will see the following in search results:

  • Mr. Wrong Feels Oh So Right (Bad Romance Book 3)

The parentheses show that this book is part of a series. The “Book 3” makes it clear that this is the third volume of a series.

What If

Are you wondering whether it matters if your book is a stand-alone book that could be read all by itself out of sequence?

  • Doesn’t matter. If you publish your book with a series title, your book is part of a series and will include the series title and volume number in parentheses.
  • Anything that comes in multiple volumes will be treated as a series.

Impact

Personally, I like it. When I first published The Visual Guide to Extra Dimensions, volumes 1 and 2, Amazon included Volume 1 and Volume 2 with the title and subtitle in search results.

Several months later, the volume numbers disappeared from search results, and sales did slow a little along with it. Before, it had been very clear that two separate volumes were available. I had contacted CreateSpace and Amazon, and the volume numbers have reappeared and vanished a couple of times.

As a customer, I had trouble buying Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time. It wasn’t clear which volume was which, or how many volumes there were. It seems to make sense to wave a flag that says, “Over here, I’m volume 7, buy me next.”

If Amazon is making this change, it appears that someone high up has realized that either (A) this will help to improve sales by helping customers find the books they are looking for or (B) this will improve the customer buying experience because customers have been buying books that they hadn’t realized were parts of series. Maybe both.

Do you have a series published on Kindle? If so, you might want to check what you have entered under the title, subtitle, series, and volume fields. You can update this information as needed to help improve the transition.

Right now, it seems that Amazon is doing this for Kindle. I’d like to see it for print books, too (which would make sense, as many Kindle editions are linked to print editions).

How do you feel about it?

(Speaking of changes, WordPress seems to have made a nice one recently. Now, I can copy and paste from one of my blog articles to another and it retains formatting and links. I like it.)

Publishing Resources

I started this blog to provide free help with writing, publishing, and marketing. You can find many free articles on publishing and marketing by clicking one of the following links:

Chris McMullen, Author of A Detailed Guide to Self-Publishing with Amazon and Other Online Booksellers

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