How To Choose the Best Tags!

Picking Tags…

A number of folks have asked me how to choose the best tags. So I thought I’d post a few pointers that I believe will maximize your marketing opportunity with tags.

The key is to maximize your visibility to your target audience, so you want to pick tags related to your book. However, you also want to pick tags that have active customer communities on Amazon. Othwerwise, you could have the #1 spot in a community no one frequents – so no visibility.

How do you do this?

The easiest way is to start with Amazon’s “Tag Cloud”. What is a tag cloud? Well, it is a graphically representation of the most frequent and recent tags customer’s use. The graphic shows Amazon’s tag cloud as of 17 January 2009. The larger the words in the cloud represent the most frequently used tags. The darker the word, the more recent the tag has been used. For example the tag “Fantasy” is one of the largest and darkest meaning it is used very frequently and has also been used recently. Clicking on this tag takes you to the “Fantasy” customer community.

Amazon Tag Cloud

Amazon Tag Cloud

Here you will find over 1000 discussions in this group, many of which have had activity within minutes and hours. This is a very active community and imagine your book is #1 here. In every discussion group, your book’s picture would appear in the upper left hand corner – wow, that’s visibility.

On the other hand, if you go to the “Amish” customer community, you’ll see there are only 2 discussion groups which have little activity (days since anyone posted a reply). However, “Amish” is also a very specific community versus fantasy, so while infrequent, this still may be an appropriate target.

My suggestion is to explore the customer communities you think may be appropriate for your book by either clicking on the tag in the tag cloud OR by searching on your tag using the “jump to tag” box in the upper right hand corner of the Amazon tag cloud page.

For Amazon tag cloud click here!

I hope this was helpful! Please feel free to comment.



Filed under News, Tagging Instruction

16 responses to “How To Choose the Best Tags!

  1. Great info here. Thanks for enlightening.

  2. I taged the book The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Wicca and Witchcraft,

  3. Thank you. This is GREAT information!

  4. Thanks Todd,
    Just one question about choosing tags.
    Do you not think that it’s better to have your book rank #1 in an obscure category (like Amish) than #1000 in a popular category (like Fantasy)?
    My strategy would be to find a balance: since Amazon only allows customers to agree on 15 tags per product, then try to develop 7 tags in the most popular genres, and 8 tags in obscure genres.
    That way you have all your bases covered.

  5. Regarding choosing to be #1 in an obscure tag vs. #1000 in a popular category – my thoughts are if you are going to be in an obscure category check out the customer community to see if it is an active one. While Amish isn’t on the top of most people’s minds, it is a fairly active community (niche) that has some discussions on a fairly frequent basis. So if you product fits this niche it will be appropriate. However, some tags/communities are obscure and no one goes there – these would not be as beneficial. For any tags, I suggest folks check out the community in general to get the pulse of the discussions and even in the more popular ones if your book is a good fit, it would be good to choose tags there as well but be patient because it will take a lot longer to get to the top of that heap – good luck!

  6. Thanks for the cup o’ clue! I suck at sorting out the technical stuff and always appreciate great, clear, informative tidbits like this.

  7. garnerchristina

    Wow, this is a revelation–thanks! I’ll definitely be submitting my book in the next week or two when I upload to Amazon.

  8. Thanks for this; I was curious as to how it worked.

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