Ever Heard of Kobo? If You’re an Author, You Should! (Part Two)


If you read our last post about the eBook retailer, Kobo, then you’ve already learned a bit about how their website works for authors looking to sell their books.

Now it’s time to talk about what the Kobo experience looks like for customers who are searching for books to read.


How Readers Use Kobo to Search

After readers input keywords into the search box, Kobo utilizes an algorithm to generate a list of search results. The search results are automatically filtered to put books with the highest number of sales on the top of the list, but readers can manually switch to sort the list by other filters as well.

Within this same search, there is also preference given to books with keyword matches.

Interestingly, Kobo seems to treat all exact keyword matches equally whether they are in the series title, book title, book subtitle, or author name. One of these metrics does not lead to a higher page placement than another: any keyword match located within any of these elements of the listing will generate a response in the search engine.

Exact versus Phrase Keyword Matching

What does make a difference is whether the keyword is an exact keyword match. While this may seem like a simple enough concept, it can be easy to confuse an exact match with its counterpart: a phrase match.

Phrase Match

A phrase match will connect the keywords to the listing’s words even if they appear in a different order; are a snippet of a longer phrase; or are singular instead of plural, and vice versa.

Exact Match

An exact phrase, on the other hand, occurs only when the keywords mirror the words used in the listing exactly. This means that every aspect of the keyword in the listing must match up— you guessed it—exactly.

Kobo gives far more credit to exact matches than to phrase matches.

Book listings that contain the exact search engine keywords in their series title, book title, book subtitle, or author name will appear on the page when a reader makes a search. Then, within this selection of books, the Kobo.com website will automatically filter the list to place the books with the highest sales at the top.

Be Strategic About Keywords in Your Book Listing

This information can help you consider how to best phrase your keywords, titles, and subtitles, but it shouldn’t encourage you to stuff your book’s product listing full of unnecessary and superfluous keywords.

This technique might make your book’s product listing appear in more searches, but it will also make your product listing read in a very unnatural, stilted, and robotic manner that is not user-friendly.

Overall, it is important to consider Kobo’s algorithm to understand how your book appears from a reader’s perspective. Once you learn why some of your books seem to generate more views than others, you can increase your marketing efforts for these books that need extra support.

Digital Content Creators Can Help

Publishers and independent authors are facing unprecedented challenges in garnering the attention of potential readers as well as getting their books to market. No longer is it enough to just have great content. It is now essential to have that content create an experience for their readers.

Besides the competition of other books, authors and publishers face the daunting task of competing with free quality content, the attention span of the new generation of readers and the emerging immersive technology that will yet again disrupt the publishing industry.

Digital Content Creators is uniquely positioned to assist both publishers and independent authors to create and implement a strategy that includes all aspects of this brave new publishing world.

We want to help your book get in front of the largest audience possible. Contact us today to get started.

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