Best Sellers Rank

How to Choose the Right Book Category on Amazon Using Best Seller Rank


When it comes to self-publishing your book on platforms like IngramSpark, or Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP), there’s an often overlooked step that holds significant weight: selecting the right category for your book. Many authors rush through this decision without proper consideration, sometimes making a hasty choice just before publishing their work.

But here’s why category selection matters:

  1. Discoverability: The chosen category determines where your book appears on Amazon, making it easier for potential readers to find it.
  2. Best Seller Lists: Your selected category impacts your chances of reaching the coveted Best Seller and New Releases lists on Amazon.

Each category on Amazon boasts its own Best Seller and New Release lists. Your book’s best seller rank¬† is a crucial factor in determining its position on these lists within its category.

Locating a book’s best seller rank is straightforward; it’s listed in the Product Details section of the book’s Amazon page.

Best Sellers Rank
best sellers rank

For example, if the best seller rank is 197, it indicates that 196 other books on Amazon are currently selling better than your book. This rank also varies between the subcategories. In Parenting and Family Reference category, this book is the highest selling book. In the Reading and Phonics Teaching Materials there’s only one book selling higher than this book. Likewise in the Early Childhood Education category, there’s just one book doing better.

The lower the best seller rank, the higher a book’s sales relative to others. The objective is to find a category where books on the Best Seller lists have best sellers ranks with higher numbers. This way, you won’t need as many sales to secure a spot on those lists.

Here’s a simple approach to achieve this:

1. Identify potential categories for your book on Amazon.
2. Analyze the Best Seller and New Releases lists in these categories.
3. Note the best seller ranks of the books in the first and tenth positions on each list.
4. Utilize available tools (like those mentioned below) to estimate the number of sales required to enter the top 10 of each list.
5. Opt for the category with the lowest required sales for a top ten placement.

To gauge the approximate number of sales for a particular best seller rank, you can use third-party tools such as or These tools allow you to input a best seller rank and receive an estimate of the corresponding daily book sales. For instance, a rank of 95,000 might indicate around one sale per day on Amazon.

Here are additional tips to enhance your category selection:

Niche Sub-Categories: Opt for sub-categories instead of broad ones. Your book will not only appear in the sub-category but also its parent categories.
Adapt Over Time: As your book’s sales patterns change, consider switching categories to attract new readers. This is particularly useful for eBook promotions. Try changing categories before running a new eBook promotion campaign to find new audience.
Unlisted Niches: If your desired niche category isn’t available during book submission, list your book in a similar category and request a change from Amazon after your book is live.

Remember, the right category can significantly impact your book’s visibility and sales potential. By thoughtfully navigating the category selection process, you can set your book up for greater success in the competitive world of self-publishing.

Happy writing and publishing!

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