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  • Writer's pictureKali Kuzma

What are Editorial Reviews and Do You Need Them to Become A Bestseller?

What Are Editorial Reviews?

If you are reading this then you are probably getting ready to publish your first book. Research is key when writing and self-publishing your very first novel.

Well let me help you out with a hot topic you will come across in your research... editorial reviews.

What are editorial reviews?

Editorial reviews are used by publishers to market books by getting an third party expert, of the subject, to write an unbiased opinion about the book at hand. These can include anything from grammar, to the plot of the story, down to the formatting used.

Reviews can be found on either a description page of the site you are searching, or the inner/outer cover of the book.

Editorial Review On Back Page

Amazon's Editorial Reviews

How do you Get an Editorial Review?

There are two ways to go about getting an editorial review for your story.

The first and cheapest(by this I mean free) is to reach out through email. Find authors, bloggers, and/or experts in your field or book genre who are willing to review a free copy of your book. Make sure it's the final copy before sending it off!

The second option is to go through review sites and purchase different packages based on what you want in a review. Most of the time it's related to word count or a specific topic wanting to be discussed in the review. These are high end professional sites who do this for a living so once again, make sure your book is the final edited copy.

Reasons Why You Don't Need Editorial Reviews?

After explaining what editorial reviews are and how to get one for your story let me tell you why you don't actually need one. But, wait! Aren't 1-3 reviews needed to help sell a book? No, they aren't, and here's why.

1. Expect to spend hours on end researching and emailing potential reviewers only to have no one email you back or refuse your book. Most people nowadays are busy which means your pool for reviewers is small. Finding someone to review your book is extremely difficult due to wading through endless sites upon sites to see if anyone is accepting reviews at this time. Just when you think you find one the last sentence says "NOT TAKING REVIEWS AT THIS TIME". This will all be found under the Review Policy Page.

Even when you do find someone to finally send your book to they might have special requirements you must follow. These can be extreme and take several minutes to hours depending on what the reviewer is looking for. In the end, they are a big waste of time which could be spent preparing your book to launch.

When I worked on Princess Gabriella and the Never-Ending Kiss I spent over 100 hours, if not double, going through bloggers, authors, and experts to email. Out of the 75 plus reviewers, I managed to find only 3 or 4 who responded saying they would review my story. After sending them a free copy I never heard back from them or they replied saying they didn't want to review it.

2. Buying editorial reviews is extremely expensive. Even though professional, review packages can range anywhere from $99 to $800 depending on what sites you search. This will only include one review which might be 100 words or less. Even though the review you would receive is honest the cost does not equate to book sales.

Even though I was enticed to get one for my bestselling children's book I decided to put the money I would have spent to better use.

3.Most people won't review your book unless you have a hard copy to give them. Like I mentioned above reviewers have certain requirements. The most popular is them wanting to have a free physical copy to read and keep. Not only is this expensive to buy and then ship to them but often times they take the book and never review it.

I'm not saying all reviewers are shady, but some people will take free stuff when they can.

4. No one reads them. How many times have you scrolled past the editorial reviews and gone straight for the verified purchased reviews on Amazon? In the end, most people don't care what experts have to say, but they do care about the general population as those are the people most likely to be reading your story.

Even though honest, publishers or authors only use the positive editorial reviews so they tend to be more biased than the rated reviews which is why the professional reviews often get skipped over.

5. Editorial Reviews busy your book cover. Not only do they busy your cover but they can distract from the important information like the title of your story and the description. No one is going to want to read your book if they don't know what it is about. So save your cover for the important stuff and leave the editorial reviews off.


Remember to become a bestseller you don't need to have editorial reviews. Spend your time and money wisely by avoiding the unnecessary things when you can. In the long run you will be doing yourself a favor!

If you enjoyed this post you can check out my other tips and tricks about self-publishing and becoming a best selling author here:

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