Why Finding A Fiction Niche Matters
The Kindle store is full of every category of book imaginable.
If you are a writer of fiction, it can be difficult to know exactly where to place your book.
After all, if you are new to the world of eBook marketing, you may find yourself torn between placing your book in a fiction category with a broader appeal, therefore maximizing the amount of potential readers, or placing it in a more niche fiction category, in order to target a narrower market.
Both approaches can work – however, if you are just starting out publishing fiction, it’s advisable to try and find as specific a niche as possible.
This Article Will Teach You –
- The Benefits of Finding a Fiction Niche
- A Step by Step Process for Finding the Right Fiction Niche
- How To Fit Into Any Fiction Niche
The Benefits Of Fiction Niches
If you are a fan of fiction, you probably have a few genres which you particularly love to read.
Let’s say you’re a fan of horror, for example.
If you spend some time reading within the horror genre, you will begin to notice specific sub-genres – for example, vampire horror, supernatural horror, or psychological horror.
Amazon’s Kindle Store has a classification system which identifies obscure sub-genres within any broad fiction category.
By choosing the right sub-genre, you stand to –
- Target only the fans who like your specific type of book
- Narrow down your book cover and book description to fit a narrowly defined market
- Have a better chance of catching the attention of Amazon customers than in a broader niche
Examples Of Fiction Niches
The above image shows the range of niches available within one example genre – science fiction.
You can see that within the parent category of ‘Kindle ebooks’ there is a broad category of ‘Science Fiction & Fantasy’.
Then, within that, is the slightly more narrow category of ‘Science Fiction’.
Then, within the classification of ‘Science Fiction’, there are the 20+ categories listed above – including Time Travel, Galactic Empire and First Contact!
Let’s imagine you’ve written a book based on time travel, specifically – wouldn’t it be better to target time travel story fans specifically, rather than more general science fiction readers?
How To Find The Right Fiction Niche
Step 1 – Draw Up A List Of Books Similar To Yours
You need to begin by carrying out some research on the books yours will be competing with.
You may know a list of similar titles, or authors, to your own book. If so, write them down.
If not, you should begin by searching within the broad fiction genre that your work would fall under – romance or mystery, for example.
By reading the book descriptions of books within that broad category, you should begin to find a number of books which sound conceptually similar to your own.
No matter how you identify similar books to your own, you should keep going until you have between 10-20 books which you will use as the basis for your fiction niche research process.
Step 2 – Note Down Every Category The Books Are In
By clicking on a particular title within the Kindle Store, you will see a range of information about it, including the Kindle categories it appears in.
For each of the books you have identified in the preceding step, go through its information, and note down the range of categories the book appears under.
Each book may appear under several different categories – be sure to not them all down.
Repeat this process with each of the book titles you have identified until you have a list of different book categories.
As you are going through the information related to different books, you may notice other books which you wish to add to your ‘similar books’ list. Feel free to do so as you go.
Step 3 – Assess The Categories You Have Identified
At this point in the process, you should have a list of potential book categories which you have identified as being potentially suitable for your fiction book.
However, at this stage, you have nothing to differentiate each category from the other.
It’s now time to go through your list of potential categories, systematically analyzing each one relative to the others.
Begin by going to the main page for your first category.
Go through the front page of books which show up for that category, noting down the ABSR (Amazon Bestseller Rank) for each title.
Average out the ABSR for the front page for each category.
Next, go through the ‘new releases’ for each category, and work out how many books have been released within that category in the past month.
By the end of this process you should have two numbers for each category –
- Average ABSR
- Releases Per Week
You can then use these numbers to assess the categories you have chosen.
The higher the average ABSR, the more popular a category is relative to a category with a lower ABSR.
The releases per week shows how much new competition your book will be up against should it be placed within a given category.
Ideally, you are looking for a combination of a higher ABSR and a lower releases per week. This gives you the best chance of picking a fiction niche for your book which will result in some sales while also not being too competitive to stand a chance in.
Step 4 – Note Down The Norms Of Your Chosen Category
By following the above steps, you should have identified a niche fiction category that is suitable for your ebook.
In order for your book to stand a chance within a particular category, it is vital for your book to follow the norms and conventions of the category.
Note down the following pieces of information related to the books on the front page of each category –
The typical color scheme used for book covers in the category
The type of language used in the book description
Anything that the 5* reviews for each title focus on praising
The average length of books in the category
Whether any patterns/conventions are apparent with regards to book titles
By noting down this information, you give your book the best chance of seeming ‘at home’ in a particular niche fiction category.
How To Secure Your Fiction Niche
After carrying out the research process above, you should now know not only the right fiction niche for your book, but also the conventions of that niche with regards to book cover, length etc.
The next step in the process is to make sure that your book ends up in the particular niche you have chosen for it.
To do this, you can suggest to Amazon which category your book should be placed in at the time of uploading.
You can also make use of the Kindle Keywords which you can allocate to your book to indicate which category your book should be in – this is especially relevant if you need to find a specific category for your book which does not ordinarily show up at a default choice.
Making The Most Of Your Fiction Niche
Identifying the proper fiction niche for your book has benefits that go beyond simply uploading the book to the Kindle Store.
By identifying your book’s fiction niche, you can take advantage of the following opportunities –
- Build a mailing list for fans of this specific niche
If you notice that your book is doing well within the niche you have placed it in, you should consider building a specific section of your author mailing list for fans of this niche specifically.
If you release a book within the same fiction niche in the future, you can use the readers on your mailing list for purposes such as early review copies and downloading the book at launch to help its ranking.
- Find fan communities that exist for this specific niche
Often, specific fiction niches will have very diehard fans that populate online communities. This communities may exist as Facebook groups or separate fan forums online. By finding these forums, you can reach out directly to fans of any given niche, and build a relationship with them.
- Target advertising towards this fiction niche
Facebook advertising is one of the best ways to find fans for your books. By identifying a very targeted niche within a broader genre, you make it easier to target ads specifically towards readers of your sub-niche, rather than the broader parent genre as a whole. This gives you a better chance of converting
- Find authors for potential collaborations
One of the coolest and most interesting trends within the indie publishing world is collaboration, either in the form of new stories, or box-sets, between authors of the same specific fiction niche. By establishing a presence in a given fiction niche, you open up the potential for collaboration and crossover success with a different fan base.
Fiction Niche Final Thoughts
At this point, you know how to –
- Explore the different specific fiction niches identified by the Kindle Store
- Find the niches in which your competitors are operating
- Assess and fit into any given fiction niche
- Make the most of the fiction niche you have chosen
It’s almost a cliche online, but ‘going niche’ and being as specific as possible almost always helps your efforts.
Book marketing is no exception.
Each fiction niche found on Amazon represents a potential goldmine for you to establish a presence in and then consistently release targeted ebooks to – thus building a steady source of passive income through the Kindle Store.
Plus, discovering all the weird and wonderful fiction niches out there is enjoyable in and of itself.