It’s a question I’ve seen many times. Authors either don’t know about Goodreads or they aren’t sure what it can offer them. Those Authors who’ve joined Goodreads know the benefits it can offer. Those who don’t wonder why it’s pushed so much. Goodreads reaches millions of people and has thousands of books on its site.
If you’re a new author it is relatively simple to set up an author profile and begin listing your books. Once listed it means your books have just reached a wider audience. They are able to series link your books for you on one page and they provide many other attributes helpful to an author.
Your readers can comment on your books and leave reviews and a rating. This will show on their profile and their followers will see these reviews which will bring more people to your books. Which is a benefit for the author.
They provide a great author profile page and allow your readers to ask the author questions. This raises the author's profile. They offer an easy to understand stat summary on each book you register on their site and they also offer a state summary per book. You can see who’s marked your book to read and how many are reading it currently. It allows you to add your blog to their site. It also allows you to track your followers easily.
They offer a comprehensive author tutorial and may other tips. There is a vast range of forum boards which offer tips, advice and many other aids for an author.
Most people check against Goodreads when looking for a book or to get reviews on a book. You need to beware of the Goodreads give away as this has a fee and it doesn’t often work in the author's favour. The author may send 100 free books to someone for a return of just five or six reviews. Ensure you do your homework before entering this.
It is worth registering with Goodreads and getting your name and books out there. It’s a vital part of marketing and you’re cutting your nose off to spite your face if you don’t belong to one of the biggest marketing sites for authors!