Last Updated: January 2019
What Is Metadata?
Once you’ve mostly settled on where you want to sell your book, it’s time for one of my least favorite parts of the publishing process: metadata. This is the information about your book that tells publishers, retailers, and search engines how to categorize it and how to find it. Such information can include:
Title, Subtitle, Author Name
Genre (or Category), sometimes more than one
Book Description (the back-cover copy that describes your book’s content)
Blurbs (promotional quotes, typically from famous authors)
A lot of the emphasis placed on good metadata relates to how it affects SEO (Search Engine Optimization)—in other words, your book’s visibility to a reader looking for their next purchase. If someone searches the internet or a retailer’s site for “friendly aliens,” you want your book about Earth’s first contact with a race of benevolent extraterrestrials to appear as high in the search results as possible. Fine-tuning your book’s metadata will help it ascend the ranks.
How Do I Fine-Tune My Metadata?
First, let’s get the obvious out of the way: