The Importance of Reviews to the Indie Author

Now I’m sure you’ve all read a book and thought, I really should review that, it was good, but then not had time or forgotten about it. I know I have, but since I have become an Indie Author I have begun to understand how important reviews can be.

Reviews sell books, it is that simple.

If you’re talking about a big name author with hundreds of thousands of fans to begin with, reviews are not as important. People still want to read them, but there is a core market there who are going to buy the book anyway. For an Indie who might have only a handful, or a few hundred regular fans or even a couple of thousand, reviews are going to help temp readers in.

Avebury Soft Cover

For example, take Amazon, if you are browsing looking for a new book are you more likely to check out the one with 20 reviews and a * rating or the one with no reviews?

Depending on the algorithms of a particular book site you might not even see the book with no reviews because the popular ones are listed first.

Book bloggers who review books are a god send. I take my hat off to them because I could never read the volume of books they do or come up with the in depth, thoughtful reviews every single time. Some of them are even lovely enough to post their reviews on the major book selling sites are well.

However, every Indie author loves every single review, be it long and detailed, or just one paragraph.

Something that many people will not know is that some of the most popular promotion sites (that the author has to pay for) require a certain number of reviews before they will let you sign up. Counter intuitive you’d think because how do you get reviews without being promoted to new readers (well that is an entirely different post :)). However, you can see the problem.

The golden prize on Amazon is a 5* review of course. Studies have shown that books with 5* reviews sell better, but the volume of reviews is important too. Every author wants a 5* book, but of course different reviewers give different ratings even if they all liked the book the same amount.five star

Then of course you have the problem of internet trolls. You’d be amazed how many people there are out there willing to give a book a 1* review without even having read it, just because they don’t like the subject matter.

So this is me, an Indie Author, asking on behalf of all of us, if you have read and enjoyed a book, please, please consider reviewing it where you bought it. If you’re on Facebook or Twitter, recommend it to your friends.  It doesn’t have to be long, just a few words about why you liked it. Any review that is from the heart shines through.

There is no way of over stating the importance of reviews to authors and we thank every single person who has left one in good faith or will leave one, firstly for reading our books and secondly for taking the time to compose a few words. We really can’t do this without you.

The Avebury Legacy by Natasha Duncan-DrakeSpeaking of which I have had a great review this week for my book The Avebury Legacy from fellow author Dave Higgins:
Review link: The Avebury Legacy by Natasha Duncan-Drake
Thank you ever so much Dave.

Do you like to review? Do you find it hard to review? What would make you want to review?

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By Tasha

Author, publisher and cover designer; co-owner of Wittegen Press.


      1. Hugs right back! I’m a fan of hugs… my sweet pup fills in when my daughter isn’t available… cyber ones are good for the soul! 🙂 🙂

        By the way, this post was excellent. I read a lot, not always the “big” names either. I listen to audio book in my car (I drive a lot) and my Kindle is full of current reads.

        I have given reviews. And, in light of what you mention in this post, mine are of the short kind. I am not a fan of a review that gives the story away. I usually say how the book moved along, how the author shows me things, rather then tells me. Short and sweet! 🙂

        I’ll be back for more.

        Cheers, Jenny
        2015 A to Z Challenge Ambassador
        Twitter @PearsonReport
        Blog PearsonReport

        1. I prefer spoiler free reviews too. I don’t mind a summary of the book as the reviewer saw it, but they are much better when they don’t have spoilers. Some sites prohibit spoilers and I do like the way Goodreads has an option to mark a review as containing spoilers – much better for new readers :).

  1. Good point made about posting reviews. I am such an eclectic reader and frankly I love old books. With books perused on the internet, reviews are considered more. Myself, I rarely look at reviews. I thumb the contents and table of contents if I have doubts.

    1. There is so much online that I suppose we need reviews to help, where as in a shop, especially a used book shop, there may be many wonderful things, but still a much smaller number than Amazon :).

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