First published on http://www.marketwatch.com
August 6, 2013 (New Providence, NJ) – In the year following the exit of Borders from the book retail scene, online retailers — led by Amazon — earned 44 percent of Americans’ book dollars, up from 39 percent in 2011. The insights into where book buyers are spending come from the 2013 U.S. Book Consumer Demographics and Buying Behaviors Annual Review, the publishing industry’s only complete consumer-based report integrating channel, motivation and category analysis of U.S. book buyers. The Review, an information staple published this month byBowker® Market Research and industry trade magazine Publishers Weekly, notes that while book retailer Barnes & Noble (including BN.com) remained the second largest bookselling outlet, it depended more on sales of print books in 2012 than it did in 2011, with consumer ebook spending there declining from six percent in 2011 to four percent.
“The Review reveals the larger industry impact of the growth of ebooks,” said Jo Henry, director of Bowker Market Research, a service of ProQuest affiliate Bowker. “This is more than simply a format change. Ebooks are driving powerful behavioral changes among book buyers. The Review captures those trends, providing greater ability to predict and prepare in a very dynamic landscape.”
The Annual Review explores who is buying books, what they’re buying, along with where and why they’re buying them and the industry changes those demographics and behaviors are driving. Information is culled from the Bowker Market Research consumer panel of almost 70,000 Americans who bought books of any format and from any source in 2012 and reveals another pivotal year in the evolution of the book industry. Among the Review’s highlights:
- Women increased their lead over men in book buying, accounting for 58 percent of overall book spending in 2012, up from 55 percent in 2011. However, men are bigger hardcover buyers – the only area where their buying outpaces women’s.
- The slowly improving economy has improved the climate for purchasing books. By the close of 2012, 53 percent of consumers said the economy was having no effect on their book buying habits, up from 51 percent at the end of 2011.