Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Looking to the Future

Today PRNewswire released the results of a Harris poll conducted 7/11-7/18, 2011 on reading habits in the US. The headline was that one sixth of the population is now using an e-reader of some sort, with the same number projecting that they are likely to purchase one in the next year. Various variables are analyzed but what do they really mean in terms of book sales. I decided to do the math. With the current penetration of the market, and assigning median values of 1.5, 4, 8, 15, and 25 for the number of books purchased per year, we can figure the number of books sold per 10,000 people. That comes out to 45,390 books / 10,000 folks for conventional book sales and 15,030 books / 10,000 people for e book sales. So about a third.

What is interesting is to extrapolate where we'll be if the projected growth in e readers materializes. In that case, conventional book sales would be expected to drop to 37,380 books/10,000 people and the number of e-books should jump to 30,060 e book sales/ 10,000 individuals. So at 30% penetration almost half of sales are of e books. When costs and profit margins are taken into consideration, I think where we're headed is obvious.

Scott Anderson
IsoLibris Publishing

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


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