Monday, July 29, 2013

If your Amazon ranking drops below 100,000 are you a bestseller? (part 2 of 2)

If you haven't read part one of this series, you can do so HERE. In that post I mentioned (among other things) a blogger/author who thinks he/she is about to hit bestseller status when (I assume) the book's sales ranking drops below 100,000.

A steady sales rank of 100,000 means you are selling about one book a day. Is that the case for the book in question? Not according to NovelRank. The following graph shows the sales rank of the book in question for the past three months.

I'm not going to go into a lot of detail about how NovelRank works, but trust me when I say this book is far from being a bestseller. Each dip in the graph is ONE book being sold, so because the sales ranks goes up into the lower stratosphere after each sale means that the sales aren't steady. One book is sold every now and then.

I just checked the book's ranking on Amazon. It's on the upper swing again. It's ranking is now more than 250,000 (it was 186,000+ a few days ago).

To further illustrate the point, consider the following graph, which shows the number of books sold per month for the past three months.

So, the author in question hasn't even crossed the steady 100,000 line. But does such a line exist?

Only in the mind of some because I don't know of a list of all the books with a sales rank under 100,000. Do you?

My research show that each sales rank doesn't necessarily correspond to one book, especially when you get into the upper atmosphere. The equation is just too complex for that, but for hypothetical sake, let's say it does. That means there would be 100,000 books to list for that coveted spot. Don't give that job to me. I'm busy enough as it is.

So, to call yourself a bestseller when your ranking hits a steady 100,000 is downright delusional. It's like calling yourself a bestseller if you have a ranking under a million when it's actually more like ...

"Good for you. You sold a book this year."

The question remains: what exactly is a bestseller? What do you think? I'll let you know what I think and maybe share some of your thoughts in another post.

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