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Unlock SEO Sales: A Step-by-Step Guide to Using Amazon's Search Bar for Keyword Research for Your Book Pages

SEO For Authors

If you're an author, you've likely spent countless hours crafting your narratives. But how much time have you spent understanding how to make those stories easily discoverable online? Welcome to the SEO for Authors Guide. This simple roadmap is designed to help you navigate the often confusing landscape of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to make your work more visible online.

What is SEO?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. It's a series of strategies and techniques aimed at increasing your visibility in search engine results. The objective is to improve the ranking of your website—or your book's sales page—so that potential readers can find it more easily.

In today's digital landscape, people use search engines like Google to find almost everything, including their next read. If your book or author website ranks well for specific terms related to your genre, topic, or themes, you're more likely to attract a target audience genuinely interested in what you have to offer.

You might not realize it, but SEO is also vital when listing your books on platforms like Amazon. Your book description should include relevant keywords that potential readers are likely to use when looking for a book in your genre. Incorporate these keywords naturally into the description so that it reads well and doesn't appear "stuffed" with keywords.

Where to Use Keywords

  • Website: Your author website's titles, headers, and content.
  • Blog posts: If you run a blog, make sure to optimize each post.
  • Social Media: Use keywords naturally in your social media updates.
  • ​BOOK LISTINGS:  In the book title, subtitle, and description.

Other SEO Strategies

- Backlinks: Try to get other reputable websites to link to your site or book page.

- Local SEO: If you do local book readings or signings, make sure your location is mentioned on your website to capture local searches.

- Mobile Optimization: Ensure your website is mobile-friendly; many people browse on their phones.

Use Tools: Dive Deep into Keyword Research

Navigating the world of SEO can feel like sailing in uncharted waters, but the good news is that you don't have to go it alone. There are several free and user-friendly tools designed to make your keyword research voyage smoother. One of the biggest is the Google Keyword Planner. Using it is fairly simple:

  • Sign in to Google Ads: You'll need a Google account for this.
  • ​​Navigate to Keyword Planner: Find this under the "Tools" tab.
  • Enter Your Keywords: Put in some basic terms related to your book or genre.
  • Analyze the Data: You'll see the search volume, competition, and even suggested bid amounts for AdWords.

The real gold is in the keyword ideas Google will generate based on your input. These are words or phrases you might not have thought of but could be valuable in optimizing your book descriptions and website content.

Amazon's Search Bar

Using Amazon's search bar in incognito mode is a fantastic way to gather keyword insights for your book's product listing page. Here's a detailed guide on how to go about it:

Amazon's Search Bar

  • Open an Incognito Window:
    - On Chrome: Press `Ctrl + Shift + N`
    - On Firefox: Press `Ctrl + Shift + P`
    - On Safari: Press `Command + Shift + N
  • ​Navigate to Amazon's Website: ​Type in `` into the search bar and press `Enter.`
  • ​Focus on the Book Section:​ You can either scroll down to the 'Books' section or manually choose 'Books' from the department dropdown next to the search bar. This will ensure that your keyword research is specific to books.
  • Begin Typing Keywords: ​Start typing in keywords related to your book's genre, topic, or themes. For instance, if you've written a mystery novel, start typing "mystery" into the search bar.
  • Analyze Auto-Suggestions: ​Amazon will begin to show auto-suggested search queries. These are real phrases that users have searched for. Make a list of relevant phrases that appear in the dropdown. These are potential keywords to consider for your book's product listing.
  • ​Go Deeper: ​You can dig deeper by clicking on one of the auto-suggested keywords. This will take you to a page listing products (books, in your case) related to that keyword. Scroll down to see additional, "related searches" at the bottom of the page for even more keyword ideas.
  • ​Check Competitiveness: ​If you're serious about your keyword research, don't stop at just gathering keywords. You should also check how competitive these keywords are. Click on a keyword to see the listed books. Check how well these books are ranked. If the first page is filled with bestsellers or very highly ranked books, that keyword may be too competitive for you.
  • Compile Your List: ​Gather all your findings in a spreadsheet or document, categorizing them by potential impact, competitiveness, and relevance to your book.s of individual perspective.

Why Go Incognito?

Incognito mode is useful because it doesn't store cookies, so Amazon won't tailor your search suggestions based on your past behavior. This provides a cleaner look at what the average user is likely searching for.


SEO is a powerful tool in an author's marketing arsenal. Invest some time to learn about it, and you'll likely see an increase in your online visibility, leading to more sales and engagement with your target audience.

Mastering SEO doesn't happen overnight, but the benefits are well worth the effort. Happy optimizing!

Author SEO Checklist

Below is a fast-and-dirty recap to ensure you're well on your way to making your work more visible online. Keep this checklist handy and tick off each box as you go along!

  • Understanding SEO
    ☐ Know that SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization
    ☐ Understand the goal is higher visibility in search engine results
  • Where to Use Keywords
    ☐ Author website's titles, headers, content
    ☐ Blog posts
    ☐ Social media updates
    ☐ Book listings: title, subtitle, and description
  • SEO Strategies to Employ
    ☐ Backlinks from reputable sites
    ☐ Local SEO for events like book readings
    ☐ Mobile optimization for your website
  • Keyword Research Tools
    ☐ Google Ads Keyword Planner
    ☐ Amazon search bar
  • ​Using Amazon's Search Bar for Keywords
    ​☐ Open an Incognito window
    ​☐ Navigate to Amazon's website
    ​☐ Focus on the 'Books' section
    ​☐ Begin typing in related keywords
    ​☐ Analyze auto-suggestions and note them down
    ​☐ Go deeper by clicking on an auto-suggested keyword
    ​☐ Check competitiveness of selected keywords
    ​☐ Compile your findings in a spreadsheet
  • Why Incognito?
    ☐ Use Incognito to avoid tailored suggestions based on past behavior

Welcome to the Bestseller Life Blog!

I'm Michaelbrent Collings, an international bestseller and produced screenwriter, as well as a multiple Bram Stoker Award and Dragon Award finalist, and maker of a fair-to-middling chocolate chip waffle.

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