Become a Kindle Bestseller Using Category Selection And KDP Promotions

How Amazon Kindle Store Categories Affect Your Amazon Sales Rank

Experienced Kindle Publishers understand the importance of category selection.

Your positioning on Amazon can make all the difference to the visibility of your book as well as your potential to get on the best sellers list with very little effort.

When publishing your book to Kindle using the Amazon KDP Platform you will be asked to select two Kindle Bookstore Categories for your book.

Before making your Kindle Category selection I recommend doing a little research to set your Kindle book up for success.

There are many categories your book may be applicable to, your selection will highly affect your chances of getting your book to the top of the Kindle Best seller list.

Kindle Store Category Breakdown

Kindle Store Category Breakdown

 Top Factors In  Kindle Book Publishing Category Selection

  1. Number of books per category. Fewer books means less competition
  2. Best selling rank of top 10 Best Selling books in that category versus the same numbers in another category.
  3. Number of free books in Best Sellers Rank per category.
  4. Relevance to your book

In the image on the left you can see that in Crafts and Hobbies -> Framing there are only 5 books in there. So you can instantly hit the top of the best sellers list for this category with anything that you publish.

For example in the image the Knitting category has 2096 books whereas Lace and Tatting has only 56 books. So you can see that you can automatically become a best seller under Lace and Tatting with very little effort because there is very little competition.

Kindle Book Category Selection – Must Be Relevant

Many people try to game the Amazon system. In many cases people list books in completely unrelated categories just to hit the best seller’s list.

While this can be done I do not recommend or condone it. If you book is clearly fiction do not list it as a non fiction book.

The strategy above should be used in determining the BEST categories for your book. There are always additional factors to take into consideration (such as strength of competition).

 Using KDP Select Promotions To Hit the Kindle Best Sellers List

 When you run a KDP Select Promotion for your Kindle book you are offering your book for free on Amazon for the selected time period.

Free books always get downloads. People love free stuff in general. You can also schedule KDP promotions as part of a bigger marketing campaign.

In the example on the left you can see that any book published to the knitting category and promoted with Kindle Select Promotion would reach the first page of the Knitting Category Best Seller!

  If your selected Kindle Category has less than 100 books, by promoting your book as free you stand to gain immediate access to the Top of the free Kindle books list.


Get the Kindle Publishing advantage with 11 Essential Tips To Make More Sales Publishing with Kindle

11 Essential Tips To Make More Sales Publishing with Kindle~Duru

Share your thoughts and comments below!





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Comments or questions? Please share them below!


  1. says

    Thanks for this very helpful post Duru. I was doing some keyword research and this article popped up. Very handy as I’m about to run a KDP promotion next week. :)

  2. says

    Awesome Frank!

    Would love to hear about the results from your new KDP Promotion! What is the title of your book?

    Take action and have a great day,

  3. Demetrius says

    I have written an updated Sherlock Holmes where his name isn’t Holmes on Amazon.
    I put the category “fiction mystery and detective police procedure” and ” Fiction short stories” when I didn’t see any change in ranking, I just recently added “Traditional British ” to the category.
    Was this a good move?
    What do you suggest?

  4. Demetrius says

    Thanks for responding.
    If you go to the bottom of this article, you can click the link of what my story is about and read the very short story for 99c if you wish.

    I thought I would include the article as it may explain what I am attempting to do in these stories if you haven’t read James Patterson or Sherlock Holmes

    Thanks again.

  5. Demetrius says

    I should add that I saw :Kindle edition Sherlock Holmes read (5)
    And so, trying to apply the advice in your article I just took the path :

    Kindle eBooks> Fiction> Mystery & Thrillers> Mystery> Sherlock Holmes

    Will doing this increase my ranking?

    • says

      Hi Demetrius,

      You might consider optimizing your Kindle listing a little. Your product description is very short and you need some reviews and social proof. This will help you book sell much more..
      The path you propose is a better one, you got the hang of starting in a smaller category and climbing up!

      Also consider running a KDP Select Promotion after you get some more reviews..

      You can also improve your blog a little and feature your book and book cover higher up above the fold…

      If you need some private help on all this feel free to contact me today for Duru Coaching

      Take action and have a great day!

  6. Demetrius says

    Thanks. I’m in the process of attempting to get more reviews.
    If you read it then why not write a review on the site?
    I appreciate your help.

  7. Demetrius says

    It seems there are two ways to get reviews. One is approaching Amazon reviewers. The other is putting the story on Goodreads. Do you have a recommendation or suggestion on this?

  8. P. Armanno says

    I’ve looked at your blog and I will buy your book 11 tips for promoting a book in kindle.
    I’ve published my first book last week but it doesn’t show in the kindle list of new releases. I though that they would place it automatically but they didn’t. So what I’ve to do to make it appear in their catalogue?
    Many Thanks

  9. says

    I just want to drop a hint here for you as a Kindle ebook author about the selection of the best categories for your Kindle ebooks.

    The fact is selecting the best categories for Kindle ebooks are NOT as direct as it appears on the Kindle publishing platform.

    If you check the “Look for Similar Items by Category” section on your Amazon product (ebook) page, you will see that there are two types of category paths.

    There is one which begins with ‘Book’ and ends in the category in which your book is. The other starts with ‘Kindle Store’ and also ends in the category in which you book is. The word ‘Book’ here denotes paper published books (i.e. through Amazon CreateSpace) while ‘Kindle Store’ relates to Kindle ebooks (published through the KDP platform).

    Have you ever asked WHY Amazon will categorize your ebook in its ‘Book’ shelf when you have not even published your ebook as paperback or hardcover? You ought to know the reason and here is it.

    Amazon counts both Kindle ebooks and real books generally as ‘Book’. It follows, therefore, that Kindle authors need to know how to relate Amazon paperbook categories to the KDP plaform categories so as to select the right categories for their ebooks. I termed that doing that as pairing.

    I have been keenly researching and that is one of my research findings. I wrote the Kindle ebook: “Bestgorize Your Amazon KDP eBook: How to Select the Best Categories for Kindle eBook – Including How to Get and Use the Print Handbook of All KDP eBook Categories” which provides the details on how to choose the best KDP categories.

    Search Amazon with the word below to access the book:


    • says

      Hi Joe,

      You are absolutely correct. In fact Amazon may associate your books to more categories than you originally select in your KDP submission including “book” categories.
      Not only that but when you actually select the categories within KDP the structure may seem different than it appears on Amazon and can be quite confusing.
      It is extremely important to scope out your potential competition and see what categories they are selling in. Of course if the book does not have a high sales rank, this information may not be easy to find…

      Congrats on publishing your book to Kindle, I look forward to reading it!

      Rock on,

  10. says

    Hi P. Armanno,
    Congrats on publishing to Kindle!
    This is strange, usually Amazon showcases new releases. Perhaps you are far down in the feed (depends also on sales rank). What is the name of your book?

  11. J.P. says

    Hi, I have just published my first book on Amazon Kindle and would be grateful if you could kindly take a look at it and if you like what you read, perhaps help me spread the word around. It is entitled “International Student Part One,” and it is primarily a comedy about an African student who travels to America and in the process becomes exposed to the extremes of its society. If you have a kindle account, you can download and read it for free, since the book is currently on free self-promotion for five days. The link is:

    The synopsis:

    An African student travels to America for college. He’s in for the ride of his life…

    One afternoon in the spring of 1999 in the Republic of Boluake in Central Africa, John Malinke’s parents call him to the living room of their family home for a chat. The conversation turns out to be anything but ordinary when his father Jacob suddenly says to him:

    “John, we would like you to go to college in the United States of America.”

    Rather than being overcome by a rush of excitement like most future college freshmen would be, this revelation creates a deep sense of uncertainty and reluctance in John’s mind for valid reasons:

    •First, at almost 26 years of age, he would be no regular college freshman. After his father loses his stable job of many years at the Ministry of Agriculture, John is forced to put his high school education on hold for an indefinite period of time to support his parents in an experimental family business venture.

    •Secondly, as an only child, he considers it necessary to remain a source of support for his parents with regards to running the family business and taking care of them as they come of age. Living far away from family in a different cultural setting isn’t an experience he feels ready to undertake.

    •And then there is Emelda, his love interest and the hottest woman in his neighborhood. Despite their on and off relationship marked by conflict and disagreement, John believes that both he and Emelda need more time to make amends, consolidate their relationship and probably take it on to the next level. Hence, the news of his imminent journey to America couldn’t have come at a more inopportuned time.

    Leaving his parents, his neighborhood sweetheart, and his childhood environment, John transitions into an entirely different world and discovers more than what he had bargained for. Upon his arrival in the city of Philadelphia, he gets robbed by a man pretending to be a cab driver. At his new school, Rodeoville University, he learns there are strict immigration rules each international student must abide by in order to maintain his or her status within the country and avoid the harsh consequences that are expected to result from any violations.

    Along the way, John undergoes through several experiences of culture shock and consistently struggles to maintain the values with which he was raised. First there is D., his dorm roommate-a street smart, Hip-hop/urban type black male and ladies’ man who introduces him to the world of clubs, exotic dancers and the Philly night life and who in every sense of the word represents the opposite of what John stands for. Then there is Valence, a white male student in the room next door to them who is filled with prejudices and stereotypes about foreigners and Africans in particular. John finds himself constantly playing the role of ambassador to his continent and culture.

    Realizing that the income from his on-campus job at Rodeoville University’s Call Center is insufficient to help him meet up with his financial needs, John ponders whether or not to engage in some form of unauthorized, off-campus employment to survive, a decision which if taken would have constituted an immigration violation and jeopardized his continued stay in the United States.

    In the process and separated by hundreds upon thousands of miles from each other, John’s relationship with the demanding Emelda is sacrificed and he now needs to open up his heart to the possibility of a new love. As time goes on, he develops an attraction to Mpule, a female student in his Math class. Everything seems to point to the fact that if they hook up, they would make a perfect match. But Mpule has a secret that she would reveal to him and much of the conflict John would face is just about to begin…

  12. rene says

    You actually make it sesem so easy with your presentation but I find this matter
    to be really something that I think I would never understand.
    It seems too complicated and extremely broad for me. I am
    looking forward for your next post, I will try to get the hang
    of it!


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