After looking at a list of “best promotion sites for your book” with no money constraints, right under BookBub was Freebooksy. The list for their Paranormal/Fantasy section had over 200k email subscribers, a Facebook post to a page of 500k followers and a feature on their website. It cost $110. Here’s my experience.
Are they picky about selecting books?
They are not picky! Your book needed to have a few minimum requirements that are borderline negligible so long as your book is a full book and looks decent. Just pick a date that’s available and make sure your book is free on that day. You’ll be taken to a portal where you can manage your promotion.
So after filling in some details and completing the payment, you’re good to go.
What I used to do before
Before I found Freebooksy, I used Fiverr, Twitter, Amazon ads and Freebook listing ads all together for a promotion. Fiverr was the bulk of my expense and yielded the most results. Twitter (just promoting it verbally) and Amazon ads did close to nothing, and the Freebook listing (I did over 50 websites in one go) were all free but had underwhelming numbers anyways.
So I would spend about 80$ for all of that, and my end result for 3 days of free books would be around 300-500 downloads.
What were Freebooksy results?
To test the raw authenticity of the website, I did not do any other promotions and just focused on this, and this alone. So all the numbers are only from the Freebooksy website.
Keep in mind, my book was just recently published. It had no reviews, no reads, no clicks or anything.
After paying $110, on the day that it goes live they send you an email, and you see your book go up on their website.
After checking their Facebook page, my book was not there, but a link was posted to encourage people to view the new catalog.
I checked their Home Page, my book appeared on the second page of the Home Page.
And I checked their Fantasy Page, and my book was there a few books down. A clean image of my cover, the 300 character text that I supplied, and the link to my amazon page in the form of a button.
Within the first 1-2 hours, I got 200-300 free downloads.
I was up throughout the night to watch the numbers, I would check them every 20 or so minutes and deducted that at peak hours I was getting 3 downloads per minute. The number gradually decreased as the night went on.
For the first day of the promotion, I clocked in at 1,500 downloads.
My promotion was up for 3 days. (8th, 9th, 10th, with the Freebooksy promo being on the 9th so I made sure there was time before and after. But it’s enough to put it up for just the 1 day as well, they’re smart about it.)
So for the next day, I had another 170+ downloads come in. And on the next day when my free promo was over, 3 people bought the book with money. My final total was 1690 downloads, 3 purchases, and an astounding rating while it was free.
I always found the Epic Fantasy genre to be very competitive, so I was quite surprised to see it be the #2. Perhaps some downloads came from being listed up so high on Amazon, but I can’t specifically confirm that.
I read another blog post somewhere about their Freebooksy experience. They said their promotion yielded 5000 downloads. That was in a different genre than mine, and their book already had a good reputation with good reviews.
My book had absolutely no reviews and no reputation, so I confidently assume that it impacted my numbers by a lot.
The book that I promoted was The Crestalium.
I’ll be trying BargainBooksy later as well in exactly one month, which is $45 to a 137,000 people list.
I’ve compared the numbers to BookBub, and FreeBooksy yields a similar ratio to them but on a smaller scale. You’d be paying 400-700$ on BookBub and getting the same bang for your buck as FreeBooksy just on a smaller scale.
Especially if you’re a new author or your book has no other ways of gaining attention, I would strongly recommend this.
The beauty then is, once your book gets reviews from those who downloaded your free book, you can then look into paid promotions as well.
Just make sure your book is top notch. Imagine what possible negative reviews your book could get and see if you can fix it before you actually get one.
Look forward to my BargainBooksy blog post later in a month!