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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

eBook sales increased 1274% over past 3 years

From Dianna Dilworth at GalleyCat 

New figures from the American Association of Publishers reveal that over the 3 years 2008 to 2011 eBook sales jumped from 0.6% of total trade market share to 6.4%.  Small numbers, maybe, but it is an increase in eBook sales of 1274%

Even more significantly, it is now plain that as eBook sales climb, sales of mass market paperbacks drop.  In fact, they have plunged, descending 13.8% since 2008.

This confirms what I observed over five weeks at sea.  eReaders, many of them brand spanking new, were much more prevalent than mass market paperbacks, and the dozen or so owners of eReaders I spoke to were uniformly delighted with their new acquisitions.  (As a footnote, those who owned iPads were thrilled, while those with Kindles and other gadgets that read just in black on gray were merely very pleased.) 

There is a ray of hope for traditional publishers, though.  It seems evident that it is the humble paperback that is going to be replaced by the eReader, and good quality, beautifully produced "real" books are always going to find a market, albeit a discerning one.


Shayne Parkinson said...

Yes, I've thought for a while that eBooks share the market space of mass market paperbacks. I find flimsy paperbacks fairly difficult to read (especially as the print seems to get smaller as my eyes get older).

Interesting that you encountered so many eReaders on your travels!

Joan Druett said...

I was surprised. I think the owners had bought their eReaders especially for the 4-week cruise and were getting used to them. A man who proudly showed off his top-level iPad had only 3 books on it, one of them Winnie the Pooh, which looked brilliant, just as good as I remembered.