Everyone loves cleaning, right?
Here’s a quick and easy (don’t you just love those words?) way to clean something super important: buy links for your books.
Hmm… Long, messy link. (Clean-up on aisle five!)
Happy, clean, pretty link!
How did I get that? Easy. Delete everything highlighted in yellow. (That would be everything after your ASIN.)
What are those reference, encoding, string of letters and numbers thingies? Why are they there? If the link works without them (it does), why include them? You need your ASIN (Amazon Standard Identification Number) but after that…?
You could take out the “https” or the “www” (or even the title of your book if you’d like) to shorten it for sharing or just to look nice. But, for now, I’m thinking that stuff at the end there would be great to, you know, not be there.
I don’t know much about the mumbo-jumbo techie stuff like algorithms or backlinks or tracking or, actually, anything of the sort but I still think cleaning links is a good idea. If there’s even a potential problem, why risk it? I read this post on D.G. Kaye’s site a few months ago regarding Amazon links. She gives info on what all this stuff might mean for you and your books. If you haven’t read it, you really should.
And, though I’ve seen many people write about this, I’m still seeing lots of long links out there. Perhaps it’s not crucial to remove that gobbledygook but…what if it is? Get rid of it.
I guess that’s all I’m saying.
So now you’re saying, “Yah, well my links are clean, lady!”
Then I say, “That’s great! What about the links to other people’s books? The ones you’re promoting on your blog or posting on social media?”
Clean those up, too, you know? Because. You’re nice that way.
A global or universal link will eliminate the need to do this for your books but a lot of people haven’t gotten around to that yet. *raises hand* Also, that doesn’t help when you’re sharing other people’s books or they’re sharing yours and don’t have your link. If you get into the habit of dropping that gunk after the ASIN (see the highlighted link up there ↑↑↑), it won’t be an issue. You’ll always have clean links. And your fellow authors will, too.
Are your links clean? If not, why? Is this a choice or have you just not gotten to it yet? (P.S. Even if you use clean links in your posts, please check your sidebars… Just saying.) 🙂
P.P.S. I’m just taking a shot in the dark here but you should probably clean before creating a universal link. I mean…who knows what happens if you use a long link with all those encoded reference thingies to paste into a global link? Does it clean for you? Does it forever track you? No clue.
I’m sharing Debby’s comment in the post here for more info:
“it’s important to clean off the links of other’s books when you’re promoting them because anyone who…decides to buy from the link provided to get to Amazon can be misconstrued as a ‘friend’ of the author…it’s a target and flag to Amazon that the book was purchased from a tracked link making you look like you knew the author because it was a trailed link, not the clean link you’d see if you actually just went to Amazon direct to the book page. 🙂 [Also]…Universal links should be clean…”