Publishers having control over e-book pricing has been a resounding failure in the United States over the course of the past few years, but this is not the only market to see a consistent decline in revenue. The United Kingdom has also been experiencing lackluster sales, as readers are buying less.
According to the UK Publishers Association digital sales have declined 7% year-on-year across the board to £182m, driven by a marked decline in digital revenue for trade publishers, which was down by a steep 19%. Digital revenues for education and English Language Teaching publishers by contrast were strong, up 32%, whilst academic/professional digital revenues were also up, by 9%.
Buying less e-books has been a boon to the print industry. Print sales increased by 1% in the first six months of the year (January-June 2016) to £898m in comparison to the same period a year earlier, driven in particular by a 6% growth of trade books.
Why are we seeing such a large decline in e-book sales in the United Kingdom this year? The trend first started two years ago when major publishers started to control the price of an e-book. This dramatically increased the average cost per title by over 30%. Publishers thought they knew how to sensibly price digital content better than Amazon, and were wrong.
via the Bookseller
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.