A Book Advocate’s Guide to Signing Up For NetGalley

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Do you love recommending books? Do you spend your professional or personal time championing your favorite authors? Then NetGalley is the place for you! Start your book advocate journey here by learning everything you need to know about NetGalley, how to become a member, and what to do once you’ve signed up.

Current members: We haven’t forgotten about you! Over the next few months we will be rolling out a new Profile Walkthrough to all members in stages.

What is NetGalley?

NetGalley helps publishers and authors promote digital review copies (DRCs) and audiobooks to book advocates and industry professionals. Publishers make books available on NetGalley for the community to discover, request, read, and review. These books are available for members to read primarily before they are published. In the book trade, these are called “galleys” (hence our name!).

 

Who can sign up for NetGalley?

If you are a reviewer, book trade professional, librarian, bookseller, educator, journalist, or member of the media, you can use NetGalley for free to request, read/listen, review, and recommend books. 

 

How does it work?

When you visit NetGalley.com you’ll see books available for request. When a member requests a book, the book’s publisher looks over their Profile and can approve or decline the request based on factors such as a member’s Feedback Ratio. Publishers can also invite members to view a specific book or make a book available as Read Now, meaning no request is necessary before accessing the book.

 

What’s expected of members?

Publishers and authors make digital review copies and audiobooks available for the NetGalley community and, in exchange, members provide reviews, star ratings, industry list nominations, and more depending on their Member Type. Your reviews and feedback are essential to publishers and other readers! Each review submitted raises your Feedback Ratio, which can lead to more request approvals.

 

Now that you know more about NetGalley, let’s walk through the signup process.

 

Signing Up

Start your journey by visiting NetGalley.com and clicking the orange button that reads “Become a Member.”

You’ll be taken to the registration page, where you’ll be asked to choose a login and password. Your login won’t appear anywhere on the site, and it’s still helpful to choose something you’ll easily remember for future logins. A unique password is key to protecting your account—try a password generator to help.

Next, you’ll fill in your name, email address, and the country you live in. NetGalley currently operates in five different territories: U.S., U.K., France, Germany, and Japan! Make sure you’re signing up on the website that matches your country.

Finally, select your Member Type. After you’ve finished with the registration page and verified your email, you’ll have the opportunity to confirm or update your Member Type. We’ll talk more about this in the next step, but feel free to peek ahead if you’re unsure of which type to select.

Before you hit submit, we recommend subscribing to NetGalley newsletters to stay up-to-date on new books!

 

Member Types

After confirming your email, you’ll be redirected to a guided walkthrough to help you complete your Profile. The first step is selecting your Member Type, which gives publishers a sense of who you are and how you use NetGalley. 

There are six options to choose from and members may only select one. Carefully consider your primary audience and where you promote books and then choose the one that best reflects your use of NetGalley. It’s especially important to select the most accurate Member Type because as a publicity manager shared with us, one of the most common reasons a book request is declined is an incorrect Member Type. If your job changes or you realize you accidentally selected the wrong Member Type, please contact support and we will help you change it.

To choose a Member Type, think about what best defines you as a book advocate or industry professional. Here’s a rundown of each:

 

Reviewer
If you select this Member Type, it means that you primarily review books online, such as on a blog, social media, or a website like Amazon or Goodreads. If you have a book blog, Bookstagram, Booktok, Booktube, etc.—this is the Member Type for you.

You’ll see four options for where you primarily review: Blog/Website, Consumer Website, or Social Platform. You may publish reviews in all of these locations, so choose the one you use most often and consider to be your primary audience for book reviews. You’ll also be prompted for links to any websites or social media channels to give publishers the full picture of where you review.

On the next page, you’ll fill out your Bio, which provides more opportunities to talk about your Member Type. If you have a blog or other form of bookish social media, talk about the type of content that you create. Including important stats about your platforms—such as average monthly pageviews to your blog or your social media following—is incredibly helpful for publishers. Make sure to include the date you pulled your stats so it’s clear to a publisher how recent those numbers are. Set a recurring reminder for yourself to update those stats on a regular basis. 

 

Bookseller 

If you select this Member Type, it means that you work at a bookstore and buy or recommend books for that store and to patrons.

Once you select this type, you’ll be prompted to select the kind of bookstore you work at (Bookstore Chain, Distributor/Wholesaler, Independent Bookstore, Online Retail, Retail) and to share the name of your store. Note: Online Retail refers specifically to stores that operate online and do not have a physical storefront. It does not include individuals who sell books online or use affiliate links connected to their blog or social platforms.

On the next page, you’ll fill out your Bio, which provides more opportunities to talk about your Member Type. In your Bio, you can share events or programs you plan, any purchasing you’re in charge of, and professional associations you may have, such as the American Booksellers Association. Use the field when prompted to validate your membership so publishers will see a special icon in your Profile. Requests from validated members are generally approved more quickly and given the ability to nominate for the Indie Next List directly in NetGalley!

Finally, you’ll have the chance to share links to any websites or social media platforms where you talk about books!

 

Librarian

If you select this Member Type, it means that you work in a public or private library and buy or recommend books for collection development and to patrons.

Once you select this type, you’ll be prompted to select the kind of library you work at (Academic, Public, Primary or elementary school, Secondary school/high school, Special) and to share the name of your library.

On the next page, you’ll fill out your Bio, which provides more opportunities to talk about your Member Type. In your Bio, you can share events or programs you plan, any purchasing you’re in charge of, and professional associations you may have, such as the American Library Association. Use the field when prompted to validate your membership so publishers will see a special icon in your Profile. Requests from validated members are generally approved more quickly and given the ability to nominate for the LibraryReads List directly in NetGalley!

Finally, you’ll have the chance to share links to any websites or social media platforms where you talk about books!

 

Educator 

If you select this Member Type, it means that you work in a school and adopt books for the classroom.

Once you select this type, you’ll be prompted to select the kind of school you work at (Primary school/elementary school, Middle/high school/secondary school, Homeschooling (all ages), or Professionals/adults) and to share the name of your school.

On the next page, you’ll fill out your Bio, which provides more opportunities to talk about your Member Type. In your Bio, you can share the department you work in, the subjects/ages you teach, if you’re involved in curriculum development, and any events or programs you plan.

Finally, you’ll have the chance to share links to any websites or social media platforms where you talk about books!

 

Media / Journalist

If you select this Member Type, it means that you work in media and promote authors and review books through a traditional media outlet.

Once you select this type, you’ll be prompted to select the type of media you work in: TV, Radio/Podcast, Newspaper/Magazine/Online Publication, or Film/Production Company. Please note that Online Publication does not include a blog or social media, which can be found under the Reviewer Member Type.

On the next page, you’ll fill out your Bio, which provides more opportunities to talk about your Member Type. In your Bio, you can share details about the outlets that you write for, the type of content you create and how you work with books/authors, and the stats about your platform’s reach and audience.

Finally, you’ll have the chance to share links to any websites or social media platforms where you talk about books!

 

Book Trade Professional 

This is a new Member Type on NetGalley specifically for those who work in the publishing industry—such as authors, agents, or anyone who works at a publisher but is looking to use a member (reader) account to access books. 

On the next page, you’ll fill out your Bio, which provides more opportunities to talk about your Member Type. In your Bio, you can share more about your role in the industry and your use of NetGalley. Authors should include information about the books they write (and endorse/blurb for others), agents should similarly mention the books they work on and the type of rights they secure, and publishers can share the department they work in.

Finally, you’ll have the chance to share links to any websites or social media platforms where you talk about books! 

 

Categories & Topics

Once you’ve selected your Member Type, make sure to enable your preferred  Categories—the kinds of books that you’ll focus on. As we learned from a publicity and marketing manager, it helps to be specific here rather than broad. The categories you select should also be a reflection of your Member Type. For example, a middle school librarian will likely want to select Middle Grade and Young Adult, and possibly also Children’s Fiction. You can always edit these Categories later if needed. In addition to Categories, you should also select Topics that interest you (such as Audiobooks and Book Club content).

 

General Tips for Your Bio

Make sure to keep your Bio professional and succinct. A love of books brought all of us to NetGalley, so don’t worry about expressing that passion to publishers. Instead, focus on relevant information about how you use digital review copies and explain your role as an industry professional. Remember: Publishers see this while deciding to approve requests (but other members do not), so think of your Bio as your book advocate resume! 

We shared some specific Bio tips above for each Member Type. But here are a few ideas that work for all types: share 3-5 of your favorite authors, mention if you run a book club or host online reading events, name any author street teams you’re on, and if you’re comfortable you can mention if you are an OwnVoices reviewer.

 

Final steps

You have the opportunity to choose how your name is displayed on reviews: your first name and last initial or an alias. Keep in mind that when you submit your review via the Feedback section, it will be sent to the publisher and visible to fellow NetGalley members from the NetGalley title details page. You’ll notice that members can indicate if your (and other) reviews are helpful. Public reviews on the NetGalley site will be displayed with your profile photo, member type, and either your first name and last initial or alias depending on which you select here. 

 

I’ve signed up! What do I do now?

It may be tempting to rush off and request as many books as you can, but we highly recommend checking out these resources first. 

Everything You Want To Know About Requesting Books on NetGalley
This is a must-read for anyone new to NetGalley to help ensure you know all of the ins and outs of the request process.

Feedback Ratio 101
Check out these articles for information on growing, maintaining, and recovering your Feedback Ratio.

Review Writing Tips
We have articles on how to write a review, a critical review, an audiobook review, and what to do when you encounter reviewer writer’s block.

Social Media Tips
Are you looking to start a bookish social media channel, or maybe level up the one you currently use? This page has everything you need from guides to setting up platforms to tips for everything from how to review on Booktube to taking e-reader photos for Bookstagram.

Member Knowledge Base
Find the answers to all of your questions about how to navigate NetGalley here, including accessing books on your favorite device, navigating your account, and general troubleshooting.

Book Advocate Toolkit
This resource on NetGalley is available for all members and includes valuable tips about shaping your Profile, social media, and more!

 

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Kelly Gallucci

Kelly Gallucci is the Executive Editor of We Are Bookish, where she oversees the editorial content, offers book recommendations, and interviews authors and NetGalley members. When she's not working, Kelly can be found color coordinating her bookshelves, eating Chipotle, and watching way too many baking shows.

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