7 Top Reasons for Writers to Be on Goodreads

15 Oct



How Can Goodreads Help Your Book Take-Off?
Goodreads is a kind of Facebook / Google+ for people who love to read books. A free website for book lovers. Bookshelves, reviews, ratings, reader communities, author pages, book giveaways  … all this is Goodreads. There is more offered on their website: join a discussion group, or start a book club, contact an author, and even post your own writing. More tips about the benefits of joining Goodreads and how you can use Goodreads to promote your blog.

1. Goodreads Author Program
Use it to promote yourself and your books. What is the Goodreads Author Program? It is a
completely free feature designed to help authors reach their target audience — passionate
readers. This is the perfect place for new and established authors, to promote their books. What
Can You Do as a Goodreads Author?

a) Show Your Author Profile

  • Add a picture and bio.
  • Share your list of favorite books and recent reads with your fans!
  • Write a blog and generate a band of followers.
  • Publicize upcoming events, such as book signings and speaking engagements.
  • Share book excerpts and other writing.
  • Write a quiz about your book or a related topic.
  • Post videos. Add the Goodreads Author widget to to your personal website or blog to show off reviews of your books.

b) Promote Your Books

  • Sign up to advertise your book to up to the Goodreads Community—16,000,000 readers!
  • List a book giveaway to generate pre-launch buzz.
  • Lead a Q&A discussion group for readers.
  • Participate in discussions on your profile, in groups and in the discussion forums for your books.

How do I join and who can join is explained in detail in one of our former blog posts about Goodreads.
The Author Program is designed for people with published books, or who are just in the process of
publishing a book. It’s best if your work is on a bookseller’s website, such as or Barnes & Noble, but Goodreads will accept any author who has published a book. This includes authors from
other countries as well as authors who are self-published. If your book is self-published and is not yet in the Goodreads database, you may manually add it.

How To Use the Author Program
Learn more about how to promote your books with special tools on Goodreads. Each slideshow
demonstrates a different aspect of our Author Program.

2. Reader and Writer Forums
Did you realize how many writer forums and groups are on Goodreads? Just go to the top of each page and click on Groups. A new page opens and shows “Recently Active Groups”, “Featured Groups”, “Goodreads Author Groups” etc. and one the right hand site of the page “Browse by Tag”. This is were all the groups are listed by over 1,000 keywords. For sample:

  • Book Club
  • Historical Fictionistas
  • Non-Fiction
  • Young Adult Book Groups
  • Suspense
  • Super-Natural
  • The Perks Of Being A Book Addict
  • Womankind Worldwide Book Group

As you can see, when you scroll down on the right hand site, there are ten-thousands of groups!!!
Books & Literature (26598) Business (1393) Entertainment & Arts (2222) Friends & Common
Interest (6914) Geography (490) Goodreads Authors (2535) Just for Fun (22709) Organizations
(3365) Student Groups (6129)
There is even a group that encourages Author-Publishers (Indies) to promote their books – a rarity
at Goodreads, were obvious self-promotion is not well received otherwise. These groups are a hidden gem to meet readers and reviewers. Almost all are public groups. Anyone can join and invite others to join. However, it’s not a place to blatantly tout your books, with the exception I just mentioned. ”Authors are welcomed and Goodreads supports authors in many ways, but the groups are primarily geared towards readers. Authors should join and participate in the group as a reader first.” Once you are known in these forums, your author site and your books will automatically be read – and often reviewed.

3. Get and Give Reviews
When I was talking recently with an author, who desperately wanted more reviews. When I asked him how many reviews he has written in the last year, he stumbled … and said: “well, NONE so far”. Shall I say more? Don’t forget: To be a Goodreads member and to benefit, especially from reviews, requires that you are a bit more active on this site, for sample in shelving books of other writers, in participating from time to time in forums, read books and review them. How could someone expect to receive reviews if they are not writing some for others? Be a good pal in this book community!
From a Goodreads statement: “Books with no written reviews are added, on average, by 7 people, while books with just five written reviews are added by more than 40 people.”

4. Friends Can Recommend Your Book
And you can recommend books from your writer friends? To send out a book recommendation, go to the book’s page and click on the “recommend it” link at the top right side of the page. A new site appears with three possibilities: “friends” “manual” “facebook“.

Under the icon “friends” your Goodreads friends are listed and you click next to the name to whom
you want to send your book recommendation. Enter under “manual” single email addresses of readers that are not yet on Goodreads. The “Facebook” icon lists your FB friends, who are not yet members of Goodreads to recommend the book to.
Click on “My Books” in the top navigation menu and add away! You can add books into read, currently reading, to read categories or edit your bookshelf to add your own categories. Once you read them, write a review!  Many authors who’s books you recommended will return this favor to you.

5. Share This Book
Another hidden gem on your Goodreads page, that your visitors, readers and friends can use in order to promote your books: “Share This Book“.  Did you realize that everyone of your Goodreads book’s pages has share buttons to submit your book to Google+, Pinterest, Twitter and to their Facebook page, even “like” it on Facebook?  Go to the right hand side of your books page and scroll down, until you see the button: “Share This Book
There is another possibility to spread the word about your book:  Next to these Social Media icons are two unassuming words: Your Website. When you click on it, a window appears with some code that one can be easily copy and paste onto their blog or website and will show an image of your book and a link.  Another way to spread the work about your book! Let your friends ping to Google+ and FB
On the left lower corner of Goodreads are icons to these two websites to which your friends can send your image, books name and a link for your book – as well as a comment, such as “must read”, “great book” or “you will love it”.

6. Advertise Your Events for FREE
Goodreads encourages you to publicize upcoming events, such as book signings and speaking engagements. This is a feature, similar to the one which is offered on Google+  –  see our blog Start about 3 weeks before your book launch with your event announcement. Use Goodreads’ event listing form to start the process. It has an RVSP feature and people can state if they are “coming”.

7. Give Away Copies of Your Print Book.
It makes sense to give away books – if your goal is to get reviews. More than 50% of giveaway winners review the books they win, so the more books you offer, the more reviews you are likely to get. Run your giveaway for two weeks to a month. Goodreads says, “Giveaways less than two weeks run the risk of not getting enough entries, while a four-week giveaway will generate more entries.

Goodreads recommends even two giveaways: one about three months before publication to build pre-release buzz and reviews, and a second to increase awareness when your book hits the stores. Both will result in a lot of people adding your book to their to-read shelves – visible for all their friends.” Read more about Goodreads Giveaway rules in a former blog post.




If you would like to get help in all things publishing, have your book intensively promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites: We offer all this and more for only $ 159 for 3 months. Learn more about this individual book marketing help:
Or visit to advertise your new book, specials or KDP Select Free Days.

Please check out all previous posts of this blog (there are almost 900 of them : ) if you haven’t already. Why not sign up to receive them regularly by email? Just click on “Follow” in the upper line on each page – and then on “LIKE” next to it. There is also the “SHARE” button underneath each article where you can submit the article to Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and to StumpleUpon.

Thanks a lot for following:

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10 responses to “7 Top Reasons for Writers to Be on Goodreads

  1. thebetterwaycfs

    October 15, 2013 at 8:02 am

    Thanks- that was very helpful!

  2. isylumn

    October 15, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    I support Goodeads completely. I’m a believer. But one thing, those folks over there don’t like me. They don’t think very much of me at all…

  3. Courtney

    October 15, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    I really had no idea Goodreads was so involved. I’ll have to take some time to familiarize myself with it. Thanks for posting!

  4. thomasafowler

    October 16, 2013 at 11:38 am

    Reblogged this on Writer's Conquest by Thomas A Fowler and commented:
    A list that doesn’t have a weak point, I’m used to lists on blogs having one or two filler points. This isn’t the case. All seven reasons are incredibly valid and necessary to take on as a writer.

    • ebooksinternational

      October 16, 2013 at 12:00 pm

      Hello Thomas,
      thanks a lot for re-blogging. Have a lovely day,


  5. angel7090695001

    October 16, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    I’m already on goodreads and I like it because I can integrate my blog.

  6. Debby Gies (D.G.Kaye)

    October 16, 2013 at 8:40 pm

    Great info as always, thanks!

  7. profesorbaker

    January 25, 2014 at 5:10 pm

    Reblogged this, here ==> .

    Very informative and definitely useful info for authors interested in promoting their books.

    Thomas. .

  8. Gene Pozniak

    March 30, 2014 at 3:05 pm

    I’ve been trying to get involved in Goodreads for a month, doing everything a writer is supposed to do according to Goodreads, but what I’ve found are just snooty, insular cliques of either teenagers or crochety old folks for whom an “intellectual” discussion of books consists of making lists of books they like or hate without giving reasons. And God forbid they should respond to a post from someone they’re not already Friends with. Also, Goodreads is the most haphazardly pieced together website I’ve ever been on. Pretty worthless so far.

    • ebooksinternational

      March 30, 2014 at 5:01 pm

      Hello Gene,
      why don’t you first look for like-minded souls on Goodreads and invite friends?
      There are more than 20,000 communities on Goodreads and for sure some in the area of your interest.
      After all it is a Social Media site and it is a bid odd to choose only one friend. If you don’t want any friends, you don’t need to join Goodreads.

      Cheers, Doris


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