Thursday, May 12, 2016

8 Ways to Use Goodreads to Promote Your Book

Updated 4/4/23

Goodreads is one of the most powerful social networks for authors looking to connect with readers. At 85 million members, it is the world’s largest site for book recommendations, with readers adding 30,000 reviews to the site every day. What's more, those reviews get syndicated and appear on Google books, USA Today, the Los Angeles Public Library, WorldCat, Better World Books and other locations.

As an author, you are probably wondering how you can make use of this popular site.

1. First sign up for an account. This is easy. Just go to and enter your name, email address, and password. You can also sign up for an account with Facebook. 

2. Second, open an author account. To do this, search for yourself and click on your published author name. The author name is listed below the title of your book in the search results. If you do not find your book in the database of published works, see who can join.
Clicking on your name takes you to your basic author profile page. This page has your name at the top and "author profile" to the right of your name. This page is part of their database of books and authors and is separate from your member profile page. Scroll down to the bottom of the page. Click "Is this you? Let us know." to send a request to join the Author Program.

3. Set up your author profile. Your profile is very important. Anyone who is interested in reading your books (or reviews) will check you out, so make sure your photo is appealing and your bio informative. You can also add a link to your website, and videos.

4. Add your blog. As a Goodreads author, you can add your blog to the site. Your blog posts will automatically appear on your author profile when you publish them. Conversely, you can also simply write a blog on Goodreads.

5. Events. If you are doing a book signing, giving a talk, or presenting at a conference you can promote your event on Goodreads. Events appear on your profile.

6. Post reviews. Posting reviews is the best way to gain followers. People join Goodreads to share what they are reading and, based on those recommendations, find new books. As a writer, you have a unique advantage, not just because you understand the inner workings of composition, but because you can WRITE. Turn that talent to writing about what you are reading, especially books you have found most enjoyable. 

7. Ads. Goodreads offers paid ads. The click through rate is fairly low (.05%), but unlike Google Adwords, the people who frequent Goodreads are actually interested in buying books. The low cost of their ads combined with the huge number of readers make Goodreads an advertising platform that may be worthwhile. Learn more about Goodreads ads HERE.

8. Giveaways. Historically, authors and publishers have been allowed to post giveaways on Goodreads for physical books only. But Goodreads has announced that it is now open to Kindle giveaways. (Learn more HERE.) Goodreads will charge a fee of $119 for Kindle (and print) giveaways. Publishers and authors will set the time period for the promotion, however, unlike print giveaways, Goodreads will select winners and see to it they receive their books. The limit for giveaway books - print or Kindle -  is 100.


  1. There is a way of giving away your digital book on Goodreads for free which I outline in my Goodreads Guru guide ( if interested give me a shout and I will send you a review copy :-)

    All the best,

    1. I'd love to see a copy. You can contact me directly through my Contact Us page.


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