Deciding how to categorize your book is one of the most significant ways to make sure it reaches the right readers (and as many of them as possible). From collecting years of data on how books sell online, we've learned that making the right category choice, even between closely related categories, can be impactful.
Amazon, the most popular retailer, has thousands more book categories than anyone else, and they range widely in terms of popularity and competitiveness. Since there are likely many categories that are relevant to your book, the key is to choose one with the right balance of popularity and competitiveness, so you can position your book to rise through the rankings.
Enter a topic or genre related to your book, and we’ll show you related categories. As you look through the list, compare categories in terms of how many books they have, and how popular their books are. Remember: you may not want to choose the category that most precisely matches your book's content. If another relevant category is more popular or less competitive, it may set your book up for more success.
When you find the right one, select it and repeat the process for your second category.
While we do our best to get you into your chosen category, you may find that your book is placed in a slightly different one. This is because Amazon doesn't let publishers or authors specifically set their categories, but instead uses a combination of data points to determine category placement, including title, search key phrases, and an industry standard system of category codes known as BISACs. We do a lot of work in the background to make sure your book has the best possible chance of getting into the categories you choose (including setting the right BISACs), but we may not be 100% successful due to constraints Amazon enforces. If you're not placed in the exact category you chose, you'll most likely be placed in a closely related category.
We automatically set your categorization settings for other retailers based on your Amazon selections. Your first category shows up as your book's “genre” on iBooks, and both categories appear as “related subjects” on Barnes & Noble. Kobo and Google Play don't display your book's categories, but they use them to organize your book in their systems.