If you make the investment in an ISBN for your eBook (optional for Amazon, Apple, B&N, Kobo), or for your print book, you can improve online discovery (SEO) of your book by going beyond the minimum required ISBN fields in the MyIdentifiers record. Studies show that including these elements can improve sales by 55% compared to books that have none of these elements.
To review, the minimum required fields include: title, contributor name and function (such as author), medium, format, subject and 7 sales and distribution fields like price and publication date. All of these are clearly marked with a red asterisk. (See my post on completing your ISBN record, here.)
4 enhanced metadata fields not required, but which contribute to SEO
In addition to the above minimum requirements there are 4 additional elements, or metadata, that Bowker uses to enhance your book listing in trade databases. If you are the author you’ll know most of the answers off the top of your head but it is helpful to have the following items handy or pre-written before you begin. Here is the checklist:
- Your book in PDF format: file size is 40MB maximum.
- Cover image in JPEG format: file size between 4KB and 5MB.
- Book description: 350 word maximum.
- Contributor bios (for each person): 350 word maximum.
There are a number of other fields and completing them is optional. Use your judgment and think in terms of someone ordering your book. For example, I would ignore the File Type or File Size fields. The selection of Medium under Format and Size is sufficient.
The key is to be consistent in completing these fields for each version of the book. In other words, use the same description and PDF file for both the print book and the eBook ISBN records (assuming of course that the books are exactly the same). Bowker indexes your PDF and then creates keywords based on the text. Other Bowker customers never see your PDF.
That’s it! Thankfully it is a one-time effort but the good news is that you can use the Clone this Title button to duplicate your entry and then edit the Format & Size fields unique to your edition, obviously ideal for completing both print and eBook registrations for the same book.
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