Wednesday, July 25, 2012

eBooks replace paper books? Too early to draw conclusion

The blooming of Kindle, Nook and other eBooks reader devices has promoted the eBooks industry in popularity, according to the BookStats' survey (which is administered by the Book Industry Study Group and the Association of American Publishers),  the sales for eBooks has doubled last year, and exceed the hardcover's sales for the first time.

eBook's popularity has affected the paper book's sales, the data shows the paper book's revenue decreased from $ 12.1 billion in 2010 to $ 11.1 billion in 2011. Although having trouble in making progress in sales, it may have more of a chance in making money. The income obtained by the publisher from the digital reading has made up for losses caused by the shrinking of the physical book market. The survey says the U.S. publishing market remained stable in 2011, the publisher's net revenue reached $ 13.97 billion, compared to $ 13.9 billion in 2010, there was an increase of 0.5%.

Previously,  American Publishers' attitude towards eBooks is not positive because of the limited types of eBooks and the inefficient publishing. An important reason why traditional publishers can keep calm is they grasp the core of the publishing industry - content resources, the writer must rely on publishers.

But now, Amazon is not only pulling away readers from bookstore, but also pulling away writers from the publisher, traditional publishers begin facing the risk of being replaced.

Last year, the book retailer Borders Group filed for bankruptcy protection due to insolvency, as a traditional book store established in 1971, they once to store across the United States in the 1990s, and they are only second the Barnes & Noble in U.S. But they failed to keep the pace of the digital wave.

Within 24 hours of Borders' bankruptcy, the RED retail group in Australia also announced that they are entering the insolvency proceedings.

E-book sales showed strong growth, but because of the higher profits of paper books, especially the hardcover book, and reader habits, sales of paper books is still dominant.  Managing Director of Book Industry Study Group Len Vlahos said:

Ebooks have demonstrated unprecedented acceptance among readers but the various print formats remain dynamic as well, showing that consumers want options

Digital publishing is the wave of trend, but paper books still hold a considerable market. When promoting the digitization process,  the publisher should grasp the diverse needs of the readers at the same time.