Getting Reviews That Make People Want to Buy Your Book

By Steve McFarlane

Reviews add credibility to your work, helps reader to determine what to expect if they were to read your work. As a bonus good reviews can boost book sales as well.

Buyers rely on reviews to decide whether or not they will make a purchase now or at all.  Your job is to remove as many barriers to a customer deciding to hit the buy button.

You may have an appealing blurb, title and cover as well as the right price, but the truth is some buyers may not make a purchase because there weren’t enough reviews on your product for them to make an informed decision.

While some books will sell without reviews, particularly those that come with a recommendation, books sell even better if they have good reviews— the more early reviews there are the better.  In fact, having early reviews is critical if a book is going to climb the bestseller list without hindrance.

In this article I will show you how to get legitimate reviews that make readers want to buy your books, and how to get them fast. Some methods will test your patience; some are downright simply but they are all effective.

Ask Your Readers or fan base — Easy

The best people to ask for reviews are those who are already familiar with your work. Here are some options you can use to ask your fans and readers for reviews and feedback.
Put a review request at the back of your book

The best time to ask for a review is just after someone has finish reading your work. Think about it. The book, its characters, plots and your writing style are fresh in the reader’s mind just after they finishing reading your work.

It is that time that their opinion and memory of your work is freshest so there is no better time to ask for a review than just after they just finished reading. Hopefully you have made a strong and positive impression.

Just after the story ends ask for the review. Here is a sample of how you could craft the review request:

Thank you for reading x. If you enjoyed reading this book PLEASE leave a review on Amazon. 

Ask your mailing list

If you have a mailing list you can segment the list to find your most responsive readers. You can then invite some of these readers to join an advance readers list. Send the list ARC (advanced reviewers copy) so they can read the book and be ready to post a review once the book is released.

I am sure you can image what it would be like to have 10 or more reviews on the very day your book is released. While it is true that these reviews won’t have the ‘Verified Purchase’ badge they nonetheless will help boost sales. As a bonus, some of these reviewers will actually buy your book even though you sent them a free copy. BookFunnel is a great tool for managing the release and delivery of ARC’s.

Contact Amazon’s top reviewers

One of the best places to find lots of people who are eager to read and review your books is Amazon itself. There are actually quite a few persons who enjoy writing reviews and make a serious hobby of it. It’s quite easy for you to contact them with a review request.

To find these reviewers start by looking at who has reviewed your previously published work or the work of others authors in your genre. As a bonus to doing this activity you will get an idea of what readers in a certain like and are buying.

To find reviewers do the following:

  1. Start by clicking the “customer reviews” link below the authors name that is at the top of a page on a book listing.
  2. Click on the name of each reviewer to see their profile. You are looking for reviewers that give contact details in their profile. You may need to click “See more” to see their contact details. If you don’t see any contact details move on to another reviewer.  Tip: Right click on the reviewer’s names to open each profile in a new tab. This makes going through the large number of reviewers easier.
  3. Click the “Send email”, website address or whatever other contact details the review gave. Be sure to copy and save the reviewer’s Amazon URL from the browser’s address bar and save it to a spreadsheet so you can track who you’ve contacted.
  4. Contact each reviewer explaining to them that you found their contact details on Amazon. Tell them that you have a book that you think may be of interest to them, and that you would like to send it to them. Explain that you are seeking an honest review of the item you’ll send but that there is no obligation on their part to give a positive review. You are inviting reviews not demanding it in exchange for a gift.Pay attention to the average star rating of reviewers. Don’t ask a review from someone who routinely gives one and two stars expecting—you are unlike to get a favorable review from such reviewers.

You can also find a listing of the top Amazon reviewers here: https://www.amazon.com/review/top-reviewers/

Get in Touch with the Book Blogger Community

You can use the process outlined above to contact bloggers who review books in your genre. Just beware that this process can be time consuming. While less than 10% of the bloggers you contact will eventually post a review, contacting them is still worth the effort.

As a bonus some bloggers have a good following and any review they post to their channels has the potential to send you buyers and fans.

Don’t

It can be tempting to skip the work and use online gigs to get reviews quickly, but the risk surrounding the buy-reviews strategy are too great. You may have heard of some authors who gamed the system by purchasing fake reviews and you may be tempted to purchase reviews from an online gig, but do not buy reviews.

Amazon and some astute readers will find and expose your sins. The retailer will remove your reviews and you would have spent your money in vain, not to mention the embarrassment of getting called out in a very public way. The greatest transgression of all is that you would have abused a system of trust by which real online buyers can have confidence in the purchases that they make.

No it’s your turn. Go get some reviews.

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