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Thread: Problem with ascertaining demand on Kindle

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    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    Problem with ascertaining demand on Kindle

    I'm writing an article about publishing Kindle books and have hit a brick wall with this question. As with any other product, you need to ascertain demand and supply.

    I would usually assess demand by using G or Bing to see how many people were searching for the product and what search terms they were using. However, any mainstream search engine isn't going to give me very useful results, because their results are going to include many freebie info seekers and perhaps not many buyers. So, if I could ascertain the demand for the product on Amazon/Kindle itself, it would be a lot more useful to know how many buyers are in the market for any given niche.

    However, I've been unable to find anything. Dave tried too, without success. Perhaps Kindle doesn't make this info publicly available.

    All the "how to" books and articles which I've seen on the subject recommend ascertaining the demand using G. (Keywords tool, traffic estimator, etc). I know how to do that but it's not going to provide the info I really want.

    Any ideas, please?

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    Hi Kay,


    This might seem a bit obvious but you might want to check out bestseller lists. Don't limit yourself to Kindle or even Amazon - there are tons of lists posted by publishers, wholesale booksellers, etc. Usually you can find them broken down into genres.

    Andy

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    Kay (1 September 2012)

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    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    Thanks, Andy. It'll provide a clue about the demand so I'll give it a shot. However, there's bound to be a steady market of sales for books which aren't best sellers so I was really looking for something with more info about the total market than just what the lucky few at the top get.

    Meanwhile I found a kinda workaround for the purpose of the article. Let's say my keyword is "Bangkok" then I can search for that in the Kindle Store, but when I come to use the G Keyword Tool, then I would use "Bangkok books" instead. It's a bit of a quick and dirty fix but it's the best I've got right now.

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    For your purposes, I think 'bangkok travel guide' would be more effective - Adwords Keyword Tool shows me 2,900 monthly worldwide searches for that, but nothing for '...guidebook' or '...guide ebook'

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    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    Thanks, Chabrenas. I'll bear in mind your findings when I get to drilling down on specific keywords and keyword phrases.

    At this stage I'm just trying to find out how to ascertain demand for niches on Kindle, particularly if it can be done without using G tools. "Bangkok books" was just an example, it's not necessarily what I'll use as a keyword phrase. I'll decide what keywords to use after I've done my keyword research.
    Last edited by Kay; 1 September 2012 at 8:02 am. Reason: typo

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    Good luck, Kay. You may not be getting Ryan Deiss's artificially explosive growth, but it looks as though you're building up interest steadily (and hopefully more permanently) When you have time to come up for air, how about starting a new thread for turning CanDoCanGo into an e-book (or, rather, making an e-book part of the product)? I believe that idea has serious potential.

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    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    Thanks. The CAN! thing is definitely something I'm looking into - also similar with some of my other sites. Jumping into this Kindle publishing in the way I did without any research or planning at all was a bit daft. But I've learned a lot and seem to be flying by the seat of my pants as usual.

    It's going rather well so far. Dave and I 'invested' 2-3 days (not full-time, by any means) to write it. And now if we make anything, it truly is money while we sleep, ie passive income. We've made over five quid in the last day from sales. Amazing!

    Now I'm investigating how to do it properly instead of going at it half-baked like I did the last time.

    Edit: PS - I forgot to say how we're getting on with our ranking in the Kindle Store.

    For the keyword "Bangkok", we're #18 on A .co.uk, and #26 on A .com so we've not got off to a bad start. And I haven't done the keyword research yet.
    Last edited by Kay; 1 September 2012 at 8:37 am.
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    I keep going back to this problem because it's niggling me. Don't worry, I've not been doing it all day! (I've watched an episode of Colditz, had a go at trying to clean out my EP inbox, and had a cheese and wine party - just Dave and me.)

    The best I can come up with for now is that there's often a correlation between a book's "Best Sellers Rank" on Amazon and the number of books it's likely to sell. There are various articles around about this if you can dig them out. This guy is pretty good, although he's not talking about Kindle specifically.
    http://www.fonerbooks.com/surfing.htm

    Come to think of it, Ryan Deiss gave us a free tool to do this as part of his Kindle Challenge materials, which I may have mentioned somewhere on the Kindle Challenge thread. But by the time I'd got access to it, I wasn't believing much of what he was saying any more, and I probably didn't pay as much attention to it as I perhaps should have. I still dunno how accurate it might be.

    It's a tool they've created called the Kindle Sales Rank Calculator. You enter the Amazon rank of any book and it estimates how many sales it might make. He asks us not to share his content or videos without going through his challenge page, so here's a way in for anyone who's interested.

    numberonebooksystem.com/kindle-challenge/calculator/

    So, that's the best I've come up with so far after some persistent digging. Damn! Now I'm going to have to rewrite a big chunk of my article.

    In any case, the tool only lets you estimate the number of sales you can expect according to a book's Amazon/Kindle rank. I've still not found any figures yet for the number of buyers in any given niche. Ah, well, it's a step forward.
    British Expat - helping people to live and work abroad since the year 2000.

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    How about this as an approximation :
    1) There are a number of correlations that have been published between Amazons ranking and numbers of books sold , eg this one (PDF) or this one (which is mostly a discussion about your fonerbooks.com article with some extra info)
    2) Go to a niche ,eg Travel Books , and for each of, say, the top 20 books in the bestsellers list for that niche, note where it is in the overall Kindle store. Tie that in with estimated books from (1) and you have a very rough indication of the popularity of different niches.

    You could probably get someone to scrape this info for you.

    Also, assuming readers of ebooks are not too different from readers of physical books theres probably a wealth of stats for those that you can use as indicators of which niches sell well. For example libraries in the UK release (very high level ) figures of what book categories popular among borrowers over a single year under the PLR.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kay View Post
    I'm writing an article about publishing Kindle books and have hit a brick wall with this question. As with any other product, you need to ascertain demand and supply.

    I would usually assess demand by using G or Bing to see how many people were searching for the product and what search terms they were using.
    This blog post by James J Jones has an interesting take on what not to do, along with some suggestions on solutions in his Kindle Publishing Archives. While I like his idea to use the best seller's rank as an indication of demand on Kindle, it doesn't seem specific enough.

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