The Latest on eBook Sales

Will ebook sales surpass the sales of printed books by 2017 as some have predicted (see Prediction for eBooks)?

A new study by the Book Industry Study Group found that the share of all new ebooks sold in 2013—both in units and dollars—has been flat at about 30% for units sold and just under 15% of book dollars spent. In addition, the study found that the percent of book buyers who read ebooks on at least a weekly basis as well as the percent who have bought an ebook have similarly stalled at around 20% and 25%, respectively.

ebook statsIn essence, ebook growth has not continued on the predicted scale. Yes, ebook sales are still increasing, just not at the rate previously predicted, which leaves the question of just when ebook sales will equal or surpass print book sales.

Those in the industry who favor producing digital-books-only are eagerly awaiting the day that ebook sales surpass print book sales. This leveling out of ebook sales growth may mean these individuals and companies will have to wait longer than previously anticipated.

If you are one that favors digital books, take heart. Not all ebook news is discouraging.

A recent poll by USA Today and Bookish.com found the following:

  • Some 40% of adults own an e-reader or tablet, double the percentage of two years ago.
  • 35% of those with reading devices are reading more than before.
  • 27% of readers say they have used Facebook, Twitter or book websites to comment on a book.

One thing is for sure: eBooks have become an integral part of publishing and selling books. As a result, to achieve optimal sales and profits, publishers and independently published authors must produce and sell their books in both print and digital format.

Are you on board?

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2 thoughts on “The Latest on eBook Sales

  1. Thanks for the good info Sarah! I agree that eBooks are a good tool for readers but I have found they are good springboard for self-published authors as well. A new author can get traction in the market with an eBook before taking the plunge to print a quantity of books.

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  2. Thanks for that input Mike. I hadn’t really thought of ebooks as a good way to test a market because I have viewed the readers as almost two separate markets. But, with the mainstreaming of ebooks, what you say is very true.

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