Smashwords today released an enhanced metadata option for box sets. The new option will pave the way for us to make box sets more discoverable in the Smashwords store, and longer term (and more importantly), it will enable better merchandising at our retailers.
But one step at a time. First we need to collect the metadata, and that’s where you come in.
Smashwords authors and publishers are already well-versed in metadata. Metadata is data about your book. Metadata is comprised of things like book category, book title, author name, book description and price. Metadata makes it easier for readers to discover your book by screaming, “Look here! I’m what you’re looking for!”
Ebook box sets are a relatively new phenomena, and indie authors are leading the charge. Until now, metadata for box sets has been lacking. Most obviously, a box set is treated like an ordinary ebook, when in fact it’s a bundle of books either from a single author or multiple authors. Retailers have shown increased interest in box sets over the last two years, but the process of identifying them is still manual. Retailers who want to promote them, and customers who want to read them, must perform manual searches on the phrase “box set” and hope the author placed the words in their title or book description. That’s kludgey. There should be a special designation for box sets so retailers have the option to create custom virtual shelves to promote them, and so customers can easily find them.