Author Topic: Who else is frustrated with The ZON (Amazon) lately?  (Read 1113 times)


Who else is frustrated with The ZON (Amazon) lately?
« on: November 07, 2018, 06:49:22 AM »
Okay folks. I've had a rough year, and it has a lot to do with Amazon. With the recategorizing of many of my more spicy romances and erotic romances straight into erotica, I've lost exposure on the Zon. Plus, with the change, I can't advertise my shorts or spicy romance anymore on AMS. So, pretty much, I'm fet up with Amazon as a publishing platform.

Add in the fiasco of the Createspace merge, and I'm just happy I've pulled my entire catalog out of KU and am moved onto Draft2Digital. I had been writing longer shorts to try to get people to borrow more on KU, but it didn't seem to make a difference since they weren't being seen. Places to advertise erotica has gone down too. IF it wasn't for my cross-promos with other erotica/erom writers, I wouldn't be getting any sales.

There is hope. I'm moving to Draft2Digital. I get $0.55 per sale instead of $0.35 like on Amazon. But that's with my shorts at $0.99 on the Zon. When they were in KU, they were getting $0.12 a read. So, when I finally have everything wide, I will get more money over all. It's just taking longer. So, I guess I've found a way to survive, it's just frustrating. And everyone has to make the decision because of what they write/publish, etc.

Like right now, I was going to decide to maybe put a new release in KU to try out again. But I honestly can't find a reason why I would want to do that. I know I have followers in KU that maybe would borrow, but it's not a guarantee. So, now that I'm back on the writing bandwagon and writing new releases, I just am feeling there is no reason to go back to KU.

So, I was wondering, has anyone else been feeling this way about the Zon? Have your sales been hurt from the little micro changes?  :HB
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Re: Who else is frustrated with The ZON (Amazon) lately?
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2018, 10:33:33 AM »
Absolutely. When I look at my historical all time sales in the bar graph, from September 2017 it's a sharp cliff into the abyss. I remember sensing something was off back then, but I kept writing and improving the overall package of my historical romances. Things got worse. Reads on new releases would get stuck for weeks at 1756 (for example). I have 3 novel length historicals dropping out of KU this month and I can't wait to get them wide. According to the reports, they've made a fraction of what they would make wide.

I keep prices at 2.99 and 3.99 across the board and rarely hold sales. I have two free novellas that I use to advertise my catalogue. I decided some time ago that I wanted to build a readership and relevant Also Boughts even if it took longer and it was working. So while sales are improving at Kobo and Barnes and Noble, they are tanking at Amazon.

There's a long thread on the KDP Community forum from authors reporting sales not being calculated at all. I think the switch from Oracle to Aurora could have something to do with the dead zones of reads and sales. I don't know, it's a theory floating around CreateSpace. Also not a paperback sale since the switch and no word on when authors with royalties owed from CS will be paid. The accounting and their explanations make no sense to me.

In a nutshell, I went from having a thriving little business that was paying my mortgage to writing for pocket money--while publishing a better product each time. There have been too many glitches, too often and they've had a devastating effect so I'm going wide right off the bat with my new trilogy. So, um, yes. Frustration is the polite term for how I feel about Amazon these days.

ETA: Have you got your shorts on Smashwords? I get a nice stream of income for my Erotica catalogue from Smashwords.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2018, 10:38:45 AM by littleauthor »
"Not working to her full potential."
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Re: Who else is frustrated with The ZON (Amazon) lately?
« Reply #2 on: December 18, 2018, 08:07:22 AM »
I've got my shorts going on D2D now. I have had some books and short stand-alones on Smashwords in the past, and still have them there. But D2D is really working for me for the shorts. It ties things together with their universal link to buy books, and I love the auto message when a new book is released by my pen name. I think that is helping with sales.

So, November was the best month I've had in a long time. Granted, I managed to finally get a new short published along with some good promos and new wide releases. December has slowed down, but that usually happens because books are personable and people buy them mostly for themselves. It should pick up again after Christmas and in January when everyone starts to load up their new ereaders and Kindles.

Just feeling all the bumps and potholes from this year. Looking forward to a better 2019 with this new wide business plan. And get myself back on the shorts writing wagon. I've been working on some novels and now ready to turn back to my shorts. ;-)

Kyra Halland

Re: Who else is frustrated with The ZON (Amazon) lately?
« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2018, 10:11:27 AM »
Even if you're distributing through Draft2Digital, you still want to be in the Smashwords store. They've just changed the adult filter so you can differentiate between regular adult content and taboo content, so I would imagine you might find more buyers for erotic romance there now, people who would potentially buy erotic romance who previously had the adult filter turned on to keep out all the really out-there stuff that's on Smashwords.

I'm not at all in erotica or erotic romance, and I distribute through D2D (though I go direct to Kobo), but I have my books in the Smashwords store, and there are months, like during their store-wide coupon sales, when I sell more there than on Amazon.

Strong women, honorable men, worlds of magic

Kyra Halland | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Genres: Epic Romantic Fantasy; Western Fantasy
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Gaylord Fancypants

Re: Who else is frustrated with The ZON (Amazon) lately?
« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2019, 03:23:02 AM »
Yeah I straight up don't believe the sales numbers Amazon is telling me. My book's ranks are better than ever, but Amazon would presumably have me believe that's cuz tons of people are downloading my stuff in KU and then never reading them.

Edward M. Grant

Re: Who else is frustrated with The ZON (Amazon) lately?
« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2019, 03:45:15 AM »
Amazon jumped the shark with KU1. It's all been downhill since.

I don't even use them much as a customer any more, aside from ebooks... and I tend to buy those from Apple these days. I probably spent $20,000 online in the last year and maybe $1,000 of that went to Amazon.

Actually, I was looking through my decade-long wishlist the other day and realized it's mostly just become a reminder list of things to buy on iTunes when they're available. I went through it a while back and removed every DVD or CD that was available as a download there.

And with Bezos' divorce coming up, I doubt things are going to get better.