Choose a search engine friendly subtitle for your book, regardless if you self-publish it or accept an offer from a trade publisher

Posted February 18th @ 11:51 am by Roger C. ParkerPrint

Monday’s planning tip

As Published & Profitable members know, a great deal of a book’s success is based on choosing the right title and subtitle. That’s why I devote several articles, assessments, checklists, and videos to choosing the right title and subtitle. Aaron Shepard’s Aiming at Amazon offers additional title and subtitle ideas based on his own hands-on research and self-publishing experience at

Aaron encourages authors interested in self-publishing their books to include as many relevant keywords in your book’s subtitle as possible. This makes your book much easier for search engines to locate on, and elsewhere. He advocates covering as many possible keyword combinations as possible in your subtitle, even if the results are, in his words, “sometimes inelegant.”

For example, the subtitle of Aiming at Amazon is: The NEW Business of Self Publishing, or How to Publish Books for Less, Sell Without Hassle, and Double Your Profit (or More) With Print on Demand and Book Marketing on Note the many possible search terms that are contained within the subtitle.

Although Aiming at Amazon is aimed at self-publishing authors, his advice is equally valid for subheads used by authors working with trade publishers.
Other valuable Aiming at Amazon advice includes limiting the total number of characters in the title and subtitle to 200, to avoid the inside words being replaced by an ellipses. He also also points out that longer subtitles buy you more “shelf space” on Amazon’s listing pages, because the longer subtitles occupy more space.


  1. Chris Moran
    February 18, 2008

    I found your site on technorati and read a few of your other posts. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed to my Google News Reader. Looking forward to reading more from you.

    Chris Moran

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