How Do Readers Decide What Book to Buy?

It is not easy for an author to know what will make his or her book a bestseller. The hope is that it will mainly be down to the fantastically well written story, the thrilling plot and the marvellous characters. Unfortunately, it takes a lot more than that.

While I was wandering through various posts, forums and blogs, I collected a selection of reasons why readers buy books. I thought it would be interesting to place ten of them in a poll and see which one came out on top. I reckoned it would be a great help to authors, and me, if they could check if they hit the spot with their respective books.

The polls ran on a UK forum and on one which is mainly inhabited by American readers. Here are the results of the poll. Interestingly, the top four points in the UK and US are the same, albeit in a slightly different order.

Blurb Read others by the author
Genre Blurb
Read others by the author Recommendations
Recommendations Genre
Cover design First few paragraphs
Price Price
Independent reviews Forum buzz
First few paragraphs Independent reviews
Title Cover design
Forum buzz Title
Advertising Advertising

There are a number of points worth noting, for example, Cover Design seems to be more important in the US. Also, readers don’t rate advertising and title turned out to be a lot less important than I had imagined.

What do you think?

Six Word Stories

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