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Biteucation: The Importance of Keywords

Every other week, we share tips, tricks, and new release information to help both readers and authors get familiar with Book+Main. We’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions, but if you have something you’d like more information on, please email marketing@bookandmain.com.

You may have heard us mention a time or two that Book+Main boasts more than 350 keywords—categories based on popular romance tropes and subgenres. As a “book search engine,” we have all of these keywords for a very good reason: we want readers to find the exact book they want, at the exact moment they want it. Which is why, for today’s Biteucation, we’re going to be talking keywords.


Specifically, how to use them as an author and as a reader, and why they’re important. Let’s get started!

KEYWORDS ARE POWERFUL

Much like a blurb, keywords can tell a reader a lot about a book. And they can do it in a single glance, which makes them one of the most powerful tools on Book+Main. Readers, after all, have a variety of tastes—simple or eclectic, static or ever-changing—and there’s no denying that there are a wide range of books out there in the world. Narrowing down what to choose as a reader can become a frustrating task, which means having a starting point (like, say, a selection of Bites from books that fall into a particular category *cough cough*) is vital to ensuring that the book you end up reading is one you love.

HOW TO USE KEYWORDS AS A READER

If you’re an avid reader, then you probably have certain tropes and sub-genres that you return to time and again because you just love them. We totally understand that—some of us here at Book+Main can’t pass a billionaire without stopping, while some are desperate to wrangle a cowboy and some simply swoon for dukes and duchesses.


When it comes to books, we are all the same in wanting what we want. And that’s where keywords come in. By giving authors the option to add up to five keywords to their Bites, we are making it easy for you, the reader, to search for your favorite tropes and sub-genres. There are three ways to do this:


1. Type your preferred trope or sub-genre into the search bar and hit enter. Search results will populate with Bites and books related to your keyword.

2. In the app, click on the 🔍 to open the search screen, then click on “Browse Subgenres and Tropes” to see the complete list. This list can also be accessed on a browser by typing anything into the search bar and pressing enter—it will appear on the right-hand side of the results page.

3. Clicking on a keyword at the bottom of a Bite. This will open a new page showing all Bites tagged with that particular keyword.

DID YOU KNOW?

Using Keywords isn’t a one and done deal. What does that mean? Simply put, it means that if you’re interested on two or more tropes or subgenres, you can search for both—at the same time. Yes, that’s right! Searching isn’t limited to one keyword at a time, and then hoping that you Bite you select just happens to have another keyword you’re interested in attached. If you want to read about opposites attracting in a summer setting, you can type “Opposites Attract Summer” into the search field and voila! BITES! Or maybe you want to try “Single Dad Instalove” and see what comes up. (Spoiler alert: Goodness. So much goodness comes up!)

Get creative with your search terms, because the chances are, you’re going to find something that fits the bill for exactly what you’re looking for. After all, that’s what Book+Main Bites is all about—matching readers with the perfect book for them.

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE!

No, it’s not a free set of steak knives, and we’re sorry if we got your hopes up. But it IS another way keywords can help you… Ever buy a book, only to let it sit on your e-reader until you can’t remember anything about it? (We know you have, because we have too.) By searching the title on Book+Main and discovering if it has a Bite posted, you can also see immediately if it’s the right book for you—based on its keywords, and whether they match your reading mood.


Keywords are great for many reasons, but they all boil down to this: they make it possible for you to find something to read based on your habits and moods—and they do it quickly. You can be in and out within five minutes with the help of keywords!

HOW TO USE KEYWORDS AS AN AUTHOR

As we mentioned above, every Bite posted to Book+Main is able to be tagged with five keywords (and five hashtags, but we’ll chat about those another time!), selected by you, the author, based on book the Bite is from. Authors, this means that while a particular Bite might not mention the fact the hero is a Rock Star, you should still add that category to your Bite, allowing readers to find your book when they’re looking for a rock star read!


So, why five keywords? That’s simple: we believe in making a book as searchable as possible. After all, that’s the point of our platform.


Think about it for a moment. If you tag your book in only two categories, you’re limiting your ability to be seen. There are potentially three more groups of readers who want what your book has to offer . . . but they’re not going to know that if you don’t show them. This means, if you’re posting a Bite from your Billionaire, Cowboy, Duke, Historical, Single Mom book, you’re going to want to tag it in each and every one of those categories to increase the chances that people searching for any of those five are going to find you. (Side note: we’re going to need a Billionaire, Cowboy, Duke, Historical, Single Mom book ASAP.)

Now, we’re not suggesting you tag your book in categories that don’t apply to them. In fact, please don’t do that. But do take careful stock of your book. When is it set? Who are the key characters, and what do they do? What makes them unique? Is the romance Sweet, Erotic, or Taboo, and what readers are you hoping to reach? If you have a featured element to your book, the chances are we have a keyword—and a reader—to match. And if we don’t, then tell us! Emailing feedback@bookandmain.com your suggestions ensures that we’re made aware of what might be missing and what might need to be included.

Don’t forget, Book+Main has tens of thousands of Bites, and keywords are vital—are key—to matching a Bite and its author with a reader. So, the next time you’re looking for a book or uploading a Bite, take a minute to think about keywords and how they might work for you.

If you have a question about using Book+Main, please don’t hesitate to email us at support@bookandmain.com.

Authors, if you’re interested in promotional or marketing opportunities, please reach out to the team at marketing@bookandmain.com.

For all other inquiries, please send us an email at contact@boodmain.com.

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