Why Have e-book Sales Flattened?

November 10, 2013 in Daily Bulletin


E-book reader sales grew by 252% in 2010, but only 5% in 2013. What has caused this drastic decline?  Nicholas Carr offers some suggestions:

  • E-books may be suited to some genres better than others. It may be lovely reading novels on an e-book reader, but not so great for flicking between equations in a textbook. Perhaps the e-book is, like the audio book, a complement to the paperback but not a replacement.
  • Early enthusiastic adopters already have one, and other people are more reluctant to transfer from hard copies. 59% of Americans have ‘no interest’ in e-books.
  • Prices for e-books have not fallen as drastically as expected, and are in many cases the same as paperbacks. One analyst suggests Amazon has seen the plateau in e-book sales and is no longer willing to invest in loss-leaders.
  • Or maybe buyers of e-book readers had more colourful motives; 50 Shades of Grey aside, the UK e-book best seller list is full of erotic fiction. More socially acceptable to have a Kindle on the kitchen table than shelves full of Mills and Boon, perhaps?

For the full article click here, or for a short but infographic friendly response from the Ivy Business Review click here. We have previously looked at the economics of daily ebook deals, have a look over here

Source: Rough Type

via: Ivy Business Review