I just released my newest thriller, Port of Sorrow, and, out of curiosity, have been monitoring the numbers to see how accurate Novel Rank is. For February (1 1/2 days so far) Novel Rank says I have sold 8 books. However, when I check the actual sales on Kindle Direct, I see that I have sold 26 copies. Quite a difference. So a) obviously I'm not a bestseller by any means, but b) Novel Rank's numbers can't be relied on for a true picture of sales. Just thought I'd share.

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Yes, and the more books you sell the worse the underestimation gets.

Novelrank is always listing low numbers.  It may have something to do with the fact that books get returned. As long as they pay you for the right number it doesn't matter. Congrats on some good sales so early!

Thanks, I.J. I found it interesting as it can be very difficult to get accurate numbers from a traditional publishing deal, so I've been monitoring Novel Rank - now I know it's not much better than guessing ;) 

I suspect Novelrank (which carries a warning about numbers being lower than actual) is far more honest than the figures used by publishers. In fact, I wouldn't trust the latter if they had the blessing of the Holy Father.


I'm glad you posted this. I like to check my sales on Novel Rank too but my publisher warned me not to put any stock in those numbers because Novel Rank isn't accurate. An understatement! I'd like to check my sales on Kindle Direct but I'm not sure how to do that. Any words of wisdom?

Hey Patricia: As far as I'm aware, you can only check the sales on Kindle Direct for titles that you have self-published since it generates the report for the rights holder.

Thanks, Grant! Actually, when I went to the site, I realized that was true. My novels were not self-published so I'm not able to use Kindle Direct. There is another link on Amazon's Author Central where I can get some numbers so I'll have to be satisfied with that, I guess. Darn it!

Yes. I'm a mix of traditional (Random House, Penguin, Midnight Ink, etc.) and self-published, and would love to have some real numbers on my traditionally-published books as I'm sure Random House UK owes me money.

Beware of publishers! When they under-report, something is really wrong. Amazon's NovelRank underreports, but Kindle Direct is very accurate and Amazon pays based on Kindle Direct. I can see why publishers dislike the fact we have a way of checking now.

Actually, my numbers are slightly less on NovelRank, but if you have huge sales, that may be different. 

Thanks, I.J. Believe me, tracking huge sales is NOT one of my problems. :) I wish it were.


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