Every few weeks Good e-Reader Research conducts statistical analysis of the digital publishing industry. Over the course of the last three weeks we wanted to find out how readers discovered their next great read. Over 388 people responded and we are pleased to present our findings.
When you think of book discovery in the past, it normally involved going to your local bookstore and seeing what they were promoting, in other cases you may consult a newspaper such as the New York Times. With the advent of digital books, there are many options that simply weren’t available in the past.
GoodReads is a book discovery website and has a vibrant social community. It captured the crown in our report, garnering 14.63% of the vote. One of the advantages of this service is that it connects up with your Facebook account and you can see what books your friends are reading. It also serves as an avenue to meet new friends with the same taste in books as you and thousands of big name authors also share their reading lists.
In second place with 13.41% of the overall voting population are book blogs. This could be anything from a small one man operation to a large scale site with many different reporters. I think blogs are important because most sites are written by one person and you can trust in reading their reviews over the long haul. People are fairly loyal once they find a few sites they really like and put heavy stock in their opinions about a great new title.
Third place capturing 11.59% of the overall vote, was friends. Often books will inevitably come up in conversation and its far easier to loan out physical titles. You trust your friends and are unlikely to discount their opinion if they are raving about a new book they just finished.
I was very surprised that bestseller lists, newsletters, the library and podcasts did not resonate with readers as much as I thought they should. Instead, people tend to make buying decisions based on what Amazon, Barnes and Noble or Kobo are hyping in their online bookstores.
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 CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and Verge.