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Fake Books | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksI hope you will never have any use for today’s post, but it could be a lifesaver if you are hit by the so-called “clicking disaster.” If you’re using Amazon Marketing Services (AMS), you will have noticed that the reporting system is somewhat… unreliable. However, there are times when the AMS reporting goes completely bonkers. This has been reported by a number of authors who use AMS, and who notice huge spikes (up to 1,000%) in their campaign clicks.

Now, you may think that this is a good thing. And it would be if there was a corresponding increase in sales. Alas, that is not the case: clicking disasters mean that the AMS reporting vastly overrepresents clicks, but the actual sales (as reported by KDP) are not affected by this.

Why Is This Bad?

Well, there are two reasons why this should worry you. First, since you pay for clicks, you waste money without generating any sales. In marketing terms, your Return On Investment (ROI) suddenly becomes wildly negative.

The second reason is that it becomes nearly impossible to estimate which campaign is actually working out and which is not, especially if you have multiple campaigns running for the same books.

What Can You Do?

Author Michal Stawicki had this happen to him in August. He successfully got Amazon to not only fix the problem but also to correct the invoice amount. He recently posted on a Facebook group the ticket he sent KDP Support as a template for other authors. As it’s a Closed Group, I have edited it and I’m sharing here my own, cut-down version:

Subject: Inflated clicks and costs

Dear Sirs,

My AMS dashboard reported today X% more clicks on my campaigns than my daily average with no change whatsoever in my setup. KDP sales didn’t reflect this. Please use your “advanced click-validation and impression-validation software” to clear our data and modify the current invoice amount.

Respectfully,

As always, be polite in all your communications and remember it’s not the fault of the person on the other end of the line, and that you depend on them to fix the problem!