Bookstore Sales Erosion Is Only Part of the Story
Double click on the above chart to view the PrintCom monthly bookstore volume comparison for sales from 2007 to 2010.
Although growing rapidly according to IBIS World research, e-book sales make up a small portion of the industry’s 2,760 publishers’ revenue. The advent of e-books, combined with recession-induced tighter spending, had pushed a growing number of publishers to reduce inventory costs—long a major “thorn in the side problem”—through the utilization of digital printing, shorter initial printing run lengths, on-demand store replenishment and direct order fulfillment. Trade books—hard and soft cover—have led the move to digital printing.
PrintCom research shows that 30-40 percent of current e-book sales are generated by adults who previously bought few, if any, printed books. Low cost, instant availability convenience and gift giving are the three primary factors behind this new book market. The printed text book market has not yet felt a significant impact from e-books. However, with the introduction of color capable readers, a significant share of the text book market is expected by PrintCom to migrate from print to electronic.
The 2011 book industry can best be described as volatile and disrupted, requiring companies with a vested interest in this market to continuously monitor the industry’s modus operandi.
The PrintCom Consulting Group is one of the print and communications industries’ leading consultancies. Headquartered in Charlotte, NC, the group includes 16 associate consultants with a broad senior level background and experience in conventional and digital production processes as well as the requirements of the industry’s market segments. For detailed information about PrintCom, contact Bill Lamparter, the group’s president and well known industry analyst. PrintCom Consulting Group; 1020 Farm Creek Rd.; Waxhaw, NC 28173; (704) 843-5350 or PrintCom@aol.com.