Book publishers wanting to optimize their web content to drive discovery should approach it as a battle waged on two fronts: the elements they control, and the ones they don’t.
Off-site content, like book reviews, fall into the latter category, but what marketing expert Murray Izenwasser calls the “mechanicals” of publishers’ own sites can be tailored to what search engines look for.
“Just by focusing a little effort on the mechanicals you can start showing up at the top of the search results,” he says.
One common myth is that major retailers like Amazon and Barnes & Noble will always turn up at the top of a Google search no matter what.
That isn’t true, Izenwasser says. Publishers “can compete with the bigger sites. They are not too big or too popular.”
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Book SEO Is about Readers First, Titles Second (The Shatzkin Files)
Much of the descriptive copy publishers develop to turn up in search results is written by editorial staff who know each title deeply. But as more publishers shift from catering to their distribution partners to reaching readers themselves, getting book SEO right becomes more about understanding the intended audience for a book than what’s contained within it.
Related: How to Write a Book Blurb That Sells
Oyster Boosts Discovery in Mobile Apps (Ink, Bits & Pixels)
The ebook subscription service updates its iOS and Android apps to foreground a recommendation feature. Oyster also fine-tunes its algorithm to account for when readers may be looking for new material–be it a quiet afternoon or a hectic commute.
Faber and Faber Splits with FSG in U.S. (Pub Lunch)
The UK-based publisher terminates its partnership of seventeen years with Farrar, Straus and Giroux, with Faber and Faber CEO Stephen Page citing the “increasingly global and digital” market for English-language publishing. “It has become important for us,” Page says, “to be able to operate under our strong brand in all English language markets,” including the U.S.
Open Road Channels Andy Warhol (PW)
The digital-only publisher launches a new imprint called Factory Books, dedicated to publishing content focused on the artist’s life, work and creative circle.
Apple Takes Another Swing at Antitrust Monitor (Pub Lunch)
In the latest chapter in Apple’s disputatious relationship with its court-appointed antitrust monitor Michael Bromwich, the tech giant gears up for a challenge to what it sees as Bromwich’s abuse of a position meant to evaluate Apple’s compliance dispassionately.
Educating Authors in the Publishing Business (Pub Perspectives)
A great many professional authors are extremely savvy business owners, but plenty aren’t. One publisher explains why it behooves all parties concerned for more authors to gain a deeper understanding of the economics of the publishing process.
Related: Authors Taking the Long-View in a Tight Book Market | A Look Inside the Latest Data on Authors
Among Best-Sellers, Higher Prices but Not by Agency (DBW)
The revived agency ebook pricing model is now in full effect at Hachette, Simon & Schuster and Macmillan. But even though the average price of a best-seller shoots up this week as the number of titles costing more than $10 doubles, only two ebooks within the top 25 are marked on Amazon as having been priced by their publisher.
What an Amazon Physical Store Might Do (Mediashift)
It’s uncertain whether Amazon will buy up a number of Radioshack locations, as it was rumored to do a few weeks ago. In the meantime, Amazon’s new Purdue University location–which doesn’t have any browsable shelf space–offers a hint of what future bricks-and-mortar operations might look like.