I am crushed. Is there any place on your list for a review for the story? There seems to be room for any review between items five and six. Of course most reviews are for stories that have fairly high scores. The reviewer usually likes the story so he can recommend it.
I think the issue is the dearth of reviews at the site. Only a tiny number of stories are ever reviewed, and those that are tend to be those which are already recommended elsewhere (top 100 stories list, or otherwise already highly rated). Thus few readers base their story selection criteria on reviews.
That's why authors should spend more time on the title. One technique is an eye-catching title. Another is one that gives an insight into the story.
If there's one thing that drives me up a wall, it's the huge number of stories based on some girl's name, which gives no indication of what the story's about, the tone or what to expect. How the hell do I know whether I'll like a story called "Suzie"? I've always considered such tactics as lazy storywriting. If you can't think of a name, just use the name of the secondary character (the one the primary character is chasing). There are plenty of successful books which are named after a specific character, but in those cases, it was a more thoughtful process, often with more distinctive names that make the book easier to find and remember.
I was surprised at how many had the title and author's name dominant on a rather plain cover.
Because I'm a member of Goodreads.com, I get lists of all the books my contacts at the site are reading, and I'm always struck at the wide variety of covers. These aren't just the books that the established publishers prefer, but those recognized by readers as being exceptional books. But the covers range from rich imagery, to plain, to rough drawings to dark images. However, despite the wide variety of covers, most are quite striking, in one way or another. So while the particular style of cover doesn't matter much, I still say it's an important factor.
Overall, I'd have to agree, the cover doesn't seem to mattter much ... except when you're fighting for shelf space in a crowded bookstore. In that case, the cover (and title) are essential, as it's the only reason someone might even pick up the book to glance at it. If you have a poor or uninspired cover, you'll never make any sales!