This week Amazon announced a new website feature called Author Rank, where the top 100 “most popular” authors are featured, alongside their books. You can view the top authors overall, or view by genre. This data is updated hourly, based on recent cumulative sales for the author’s books.
Authors can view their own ranking in Amazon’s Author Central. (If you don’t have a free Author Central account yet, set one up ASAP. The sales data and ability to update your book page is valuable). Here you will see a chart demonstrating how your author ranking fluctuates from day to day.
Should You Care About Amazon Author Rank?
The truth is that you probably shouldn’t care too much about this new ranking system. While it would be great to be featured there and you can make that a personal goal, the vast majority of authors won’t likely make a top 100 list—without a commitment to ongoing marketing efforts.
Make no mistake about it: this is not a feature that Amazon kindly put together to benefit authors. It’s a feature to help Amazon sell more books by top-selling authors. If anything, this sort of rating system could leave authors feeling disappointed if their rankings aren’t where they’d like them to be.
So as I see it, you have two choices: You can use this data to motivate you to march forward and keep marketing your books, or you can simply ignore it altogether. This data really doesn’t change much for most authors and shouldn’t affect what you’re already doing to spread the word about your work.