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Old 11-29-2012, 07:16 PM   #1
Steven Lake
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How many book details should one list on their website?

Hi all, I'm BAAAAAAAACK! Sorry for the AWOL again, but it's been a choice between work (ie, earning money to pay bills) and writing this year, and work has sadly won out with a vengeance. But anyways, that aside, now that I've got freetime again I'm working on a new version of my website and I'm wondering something. When listing a book you intend to sell through your website (or if you're simply pointing them to another site) what's the minimum amount of information you want to list about the book? I need just enough to wet their appetite and give them some crucial starting information, but no more. I currently list all of the core stats, but I'm thinking I don't need that much stuff. (of course, I could be wrong, hence why I'm asking.)

Here's what I'm thinking of listing for the stats: ISBN (13 only, no 10), Price and Genre. IE, just the core stats, along with the teaser, and leave the rest for the individual book sites to handle since they have the full exhaustive list of stats for the book itself. Since my site will only be a jumping off point, I'm trying to keep the details to a minimum, ie. information lite, as it's there for general reference only. So what do you guys think? Am I going too lean on information, or would that be just right? I'm also putting reader quotes on the site as a sales tactic (ie, a snippet from a reader review) to help draw them in. Sorta like the big boys do with books, movies, etc to draw people in.

So, what's your thoughts guys?
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Old 11-29-2012, 11:51 PM   #2
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I share everything. Why not?
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Old 11-30-2012, 03:05 AM   #3
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I'd say the Title and a short blurb telling something of what the story is about as well as an image of the book cover should be enough. When I pick up a book at Amazon or in a pbook store I just look at the cover and read the blurb on the back as a way of deciding if I want to buy the book or not.
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Old 11-30-2012, 11:30 AM   #4
Steven Lake
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VydorScope, my goal is to minimize the info dump that's on most of my pages. Hence why I was thinking of downsizing the info. Besides, with direct buy links it's kinda pointless these days to have all those details anyways. Or at least that's my thinking, and apparently Chich70's too. My only concern was how far to take my minimization. Based on what Crich70 suggested, and I kinda like his idea, bare minimum and buy links should be all that's needed anymore.
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Old 11-30-2012, 01:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
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I need just enough to wet their appetite and give them some crucial starting information, but no more.
Most authors want to WHET (sharpen) their readers' appetites, not WET (dampen) them .
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Old 11-30-2012, 07:07 PM   #6
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Sorry, we're not quite that sophisticated around here. Besides, it's a lot more fun to half drown them than just splash them a little. J/K. :P
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Old 12-01-2012, 03:17 AM   #7
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The way I see it, the book post on my page is the one and only place where I get to actually control how my book is presented. Everywhere else you get whatever comes out of their automation system - and as I noted on a previous thread, there can be significant inconsistencies. Amazon seems pretty well organised, but - so far - the rest leave a lot to be desired (my three simple paragraphs can't be that unusual, nor difficult to handle, yet still they couldn't do it).

So, within the constraints of my site design and software, I will try to present the book as I want it presented - cover, full blurb and any less formal notes I may wish to add (thinking also of links to posts/pages discussing details of the world created by the book). I'm still working out exactly what it is that I want, this is my first book after all, so I'm expecting to have to adjust things as I go along.

In support of this approach I would add: there are two ways in which people will find the page. One (arguably the most common) is from somewhere like Amazon where they have found your book or author details and (it seems to me) will be looking for something more (rather than less). The other is from having found your website off Google or other reference (maybe even MobileRead) in which case it seems even more important (to me) to present the book in the light you want it presented.
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Old 12-01-2012, 06:27 AM   #8
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Quote:
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Sorry, we're not quite that sophisticated around here. Besides, it's a lot more fun to half drown them than just splash them a little. J/K. :P
Sorry, Steven. I'm sure it was just a typo on your part, but many people seem to be genuinely unaware of the correct form of this expression, and it really bugs me to see it misused .
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Old 12-01-2012, 08:19 AM   #9
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Quote:
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Sorry, we're not quite that sophisticated around here. Besides, it's a lot more fun to half drown them than just splash them a little. J/K. :P
Ah, waterboarding....it's not torture...

and with a name like 'Lake' even....hmmm....
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Old 12-01-2012, 08:54 AM   #10
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VydorScope, my goal is to minimize the info dump that's on most of my pages. Hence why I was thinking of downsizing the info. Besides, with direct buy links it's kinda pointless these days to have all those details anyways. Or at least that's my thinking, and apparently Chich70's too. My only concern was how far to take my minimization. Based on what Crich70 suggested, and I kinda like his idea, bare minimum and buy links should be all that's needed anymore.
Hey its your site... but I would suggest you do the exact opposite of what you are suggesting. People tend to look for manufacture/author/artists/etc sites because they want MORE information on a product/thingy.
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Old 12-02-2012, 12:09 PM   #11
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Hey its your site... but I would suggest you do the exact opposite of what you are suggesting. People tend to look for manufacture/author/artists/etc sites because they want MORE information on a product/thingy.
This is very true in my case. Especially if I find a book I like, I go to the author's website to find out more about the book and other books the author has available and upcoming. I don't consider the author's site as a jumping off page, that is usually the retail site I find the book on. The author's page, to me, is a destination to get more info. But maybe I'm not representative of an average reader. *shrug*
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Old 12-02-2012, 12:45 PM   #12
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I agree. I would never go to an author's site directly; I'd go there because I'd found one of the author's book at Amazon, and wanted to find out more.
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:15 AM   #13
Steven Lake
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Thanks guys. I eventually went with a split approach. I have a quick and dirty book presentation on the front page to get them interested and then an info dump on the actual book pages just like before.

PS, sometimes I think that building your own website and marketing your books are a thousand times more stressful than any story could ever be. o_0
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:24 AM   #14
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[...]PS, sometimes I think that building your own website and marketing your books are a thousand times more stressful than any story could ever be. o_0
"sometimes" ??? Having-done/still-doing the release of my first book: it seems to me that although I might know the right process in advance next time around, the work and stress involved is not likely to vary much. Though I have been told that I worry too much - and I know I do - that doesn't stop it happening.

I'd gladly part with a decent share of the profits to avoid all that ... oh, wait. You have to have profits before you can share them.
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