How Amazon is Undercutting Authors on Kindle
There is no doubt that Amazon Kindle has become a real force in publishing, allowing anyone to publish their works and sell them for a profit. For many, this has been a real liberating experience because they are not subject to traditional book publishers with the fees, delays and ultimately the broken promises when they fail to deliver the audiences needed to make a book successful.
Kindle has revolutionized the market because all an author needs is something to publish and the platform is now there to take it as far as they want. With virtually no money up front and a shared profit system, Kindle has changed the rules for how authors can publish their works.
Although Amazon has allowed untold thousands to publish their books of all types, underneath the success is a secretive campaign that is actually robbing many of the authors who use the service of potential profits.
How Amazon Robs Authors of Potential Profits
The Kindle system uses the Amazon platform for people who want to purchase all types of items. In this platform is a customer review section that allows people to comment on the item itself and provide their opinions. Such a system has the potential to offer valuable insights by allowing potential customers to see the opinions of others who supposedly have purchased the product.
However, there is no such restriction on anyone from publishing comments no matter if they have purchased the item or not. While for most items this will not cause any real issues, it is different for Kindle authors who are selling books for over $3.
Basically, there are groups on Amazon who have trashed entire literary works in the comments section for only one reason, pricing. There have been many books on Amazon priced over $3 that have come under a withering attack by these particular groups. They post one-star reviews and write fabricated material in order to drive the ranking down of the book itself.
Ranking is vital in terms of how a particular book is seen by the public. A low rank means that fewer people have the chance to discover the material and read it for themselves. What worse is when they actually do find it, only to see what they believe are honest, negative reviews and they become discouraged from actually making a purchase.
How Amazon Encourages This Behavior
By tying in customer reviews with rankings, Amazon is trying to force authors to keep their prices down. These kinds of attacks are nowhere near as present with books priced at $2.99 or less. While Amazon itself is not writing the bad reviews, it is clear that they are actually encouraging the behavior. As to exactly why Amazon is pursuing this strategy seems to be short-sighted to say the least and reckless for any author who wants to price a book the way they feel is best.