Tech Tip Tuesday: Connect to local Amazon stores with global shortlinks

Today’s blog will be a short one – appropriate, as I’m talking about creating shortlinks for books. It’s also directed towards people who have books in the Amazon store, or plan to in the future. If that isn’t you, look away now.

If you already know about global shortlinks, I apologise in advance. If you didn’t, don’t thank me, thank Nat Russo, as I learnt about what I’m sharing today via his blog post on link globalisation. His post is much more detailed than what I’m putting here, and if you haven’t come across Nat’s blog before, it’s a great read.

Finding your Amazon shortlink

Lots of people know how to find the shortlink for their book in the Amazon store. This is the best version to share with people, as it takes up less space/fewer characters (particularly handy on Twitter), and looks neater than the version you’ll get if you just copy what’s in the address bar.

If you don’t know where to find it, go to your book in the Amazon store and look on the top right hand side, either above or below the ‘buy or get a sample’ information (it varies by country). You’ll see various sharing options, as below.

Screen Shot 2016-05-10 at 15.26.53

When you click the word ‘Share’ a box will open, and there you have it, a nice tidy shortlink which you can copy and paste as the fancy takes you.

Screen Shot 2016-05-10 at 15.32.55

However, it isn’t that  short, and it will take anyone who clicks it to the Amazon UK store, whether that’s local to them or not, so they may then have to go to their local store and search all over again. This is where the global shortlink comes in.

Making a global shortlink

In his blog post Nat Russo discussed two link-creating services: Geniuslink and Booklinker. I’m just going to talk about Booklinker, as it’s the service I used.  It’s free and simple to use. Once you’ve created an account, all you need to do is paste the URL for your book into a box and click the button which says ‘Create Universal Link’. Once that’s done you can do the fun bit: personalising your link. The only thing to remember is not to make it too long!
Screen Shot 2016-05-10 at 15.44.44

Here’s mine: If you click it, it takes you to your local Amazon store. You can create a global link for your Amazon author page, too. If you want to create an affiliate link, the Q&A in Nat’s post will tell you how to do that.

But that isn’t all! Another very cool thing about this global shortlink is that you can monitor it. If you sign in to Booklinker and click ‘Manage Links’, you can see how many times your link has been clicked and where. To date, 71% of the clicks on my shortlink are from the US, while 12% are from Germany – information that could be useful when thinking about where to direct your promotional energy.

And that IS all, as I’ve gone on quite long enough! Hope this post comes in useful, and happy shortlinking!

The featured image is Scissors by Rhian, and is shared under Creative Commons license 2.0.

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