Published in Book Business magazine.
“Awesome,” should be the headline to describe the features and analytical power of the new AAP/BISG sponsored Bookstats report on industry sales and trends, for which the analytical work is managed by Bowker.
It is especially so when one looks back on the decades during which BISG struggled with data gathering and data analysis tools that were short of the task—resting on a lot of intuitive extrapolation; and the AAP contented itself with industry reporting that used actual returns from participating publishers and no extrapolations; and neither included most of the emerging vast universe of independent publishers. And publishers had two sets of figures to work with.
Now the BISG’s accessible “data cube” dashboard analytics can enable you to focus and drill down between and among 10 categories: five adult and juvenile trade levels, K-12, higher education, professional and “all others”; six physical formats (hard, soft, mass market, textbooks, audio, other), and five digital formats (eBooks, audio downloads, course materials, internet products and services, “other non-physical”), and bundled products and “all other formats”; and seven retail channels (chains, indies, mass, specialty, college, online retail, unclassified), plus direct to consumer, institutional, clubs and fairs, export, jobbers and wholesalers and “all others.”
You can learn not only that publisher sales in all formats and through all channels between 2010 and 2011 dropped 2.5% from $27.9 billion to $27.2 billion, while unit sales rose 3.4% from 2.68 to 2.77 billion – but if you purchase the “deep dive” option you can find the increases or decreases by second level of bisac codes.