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How To Make The Most of Amazon Editorial Review Section

Book reviews are an essential aspect of the publishing process. A positive review lets people know about your book and helps readers decide whether they want to buy and read it. Self-published authors often obsess over user reviews and ratings on their book’s Amazon page. While user reviews are valuable, Reedsy ( has found that a book needs at least ten positive ratings before most readers consider buying it. Thus, the effect of professional editorial reviews is significant. This article offers a quick guide on how to get editorial reviews as an indie publisher and use them effectively on Amazon Editorial Review.

What are editorial reviews?
Editorial reviews are evaluations published by writers specialized in analyzing, discussing, and recommending books. Editorial reviewers have reputations to uphold, making their opinions more significant. For nonfiction — and even fiction — your reviews can come from fellow authors, experts in your subject matter or those who have benefitted from your book. As long as they have some authority recognized by your target audience, they can be your reviewers. 

Where do you get editorial reviews as an indie author?
As an indie author, you may not be able to get huge publications like Vanity Fair or The New York Times to write editorial reviews for your work. But other small publications can cater to your needs. These publications include Reader's Favorite; they have a fantastic reviewing service with solid reviewers. You can also consider other options by searching for book review blogs in your genre and pitching your book to them for a review. Some may charge a fee for a prompt, unbiased and professional appraisal. Others may do it for free, but not always with the same gravity or promptness.

How to use the editorial reviews on Amazon
Here are some guidelines for adding reviews to your work on the Amazon Editorial Review section:

1. Pick the quotes that make your work outstanding. First, you need to curate your reviews for maximum impact by picking the best line or two from them. Ensure that the lines you choose for these reviews don't repeat similar comments about your work. For example, if one excerpt comments about your plot, let the other say something about your character and the next about your world-building.

2. Don't rephrase these quotes. You’re not allowed to paraphrase what a reviewer has written. And the review shouldn't be from a friend or relative that's not a professional reviewer or has some authority in your book’s subject matter. According to Amazon guidelines, the reviews should come from an expert, and any random user review is not permitted. 

3. Keep your excerpts short. Copyright law in most countries allows you to use short quotes from a published text for educational, editorial, or critique purposes. So, to reduce the risk of breaking copyright laws, don't replicate more than one or two sentences of the review you want to quote. 

4. Keep your entry in the review section short. Though Amazon allows 3,000 characters in your review, you shouldn't exhaust anything close to that amount of characters. Even the most acclaimed books on Amazon only have a few hundred characters in their Editorial Review sections. Those considering reading your book may not have the patience to read whole essays about your book. It should just consist of well-cherry-picked quotes that sell the merits of your work.

5. Don't add extraneous details. There are things you shouldn't include in your Editorial review. They comprise external links, personal information like email addresses or phone numbers, advertising or promotional links, price information and details that are subject to change. Everything else is okay, and you can get creative with it.

6. Maximize your review's impact with the format features. Amazon Author Central’s text has formatting features like bold text, italicized text and bullet-point or numbered lists. You can use these features to format your work effectively to help Amazon customers quickly identify what you want them to see. Use them to emphasize information like the reviewer's name, qualification, and editorial publication.

Written by Readers’ Favorite Reviewer Frank Stephen