You only have a few seconds to grab a potential book buyer's attention in a book store with your cover. The cover is also important in attempting to obtain a book buyer's attention on Amazon. It has long been established that the cover is important and it must look good not only when enlarged to book store size when viewed on Amazon, the cover must look good in its thumbnail version.
Not only must the cover be well thought out, but so must the title. Amazon's computers use proprietary logarithms to produce books Amazon thinks best suit the customer's search query, increasing the likelihood of a sale.
This makes the title even more important. The main title must be catchy, informative and make the appeal to the potential buyer that the book will either be entertaining if a work of fiction or solve a problem for the buyer if it is a non-fiction work. Long titles are usually to be avoided.
It is the sub-title that can make a difference in the world of selling books on Amazon. Let's take one of the best known books in the field of self-publishing, Aaron Shepard's Aiming at Amazon. A common sub-title using traditional methods of creating a title would be as follows: Aiming at Amazon: How to Sell Your Book on Amazon.
Let's compare the title Mr. Shepard actually uses in the book's Amazon listing: Aiming at Amazon: The NEW Business of Self-Publishing, or How to Publish Your Books with Print on Demand and Online Book Marketing on Amazon.com.
Wow! That's a mouthful and hardly fits the traditional model for crafting a book title. It does however, fit the model for crafting a title for a book sold on Amazon. Because Amazon's site is essential a search engine, the use of keywords in the title can go a long way in helping the book rise in the search results.
Let's look at the keywords used in the sub-title: self-publishing, publish, print on demand, online book marketing, business (of self-publishing) and finally Marketing on Amazon.com.
All of these keywords are common words used in searches related to numerous aspects of the business of self-publishing. An author interested in learning more about print-on-demand would find this book useful as would an author interested in learning about book marketing, both online and on Amazon.
The carefully crafted subtitle has increased the possible number of ways the book can come up in search results, increasing the chances Mr. Shepard has of grabbing the potential buyer's attention.
Note, the subtitle that appears on Amazon does not have to be the actual sub-title printed inside the book. Amazon allows the author to enter the sub-title in the product description when entering title information. This allows for the opportunity to craft a search friendly sub-title.