News

Book sales pass the £1bn mark

Printed book sales in 2011 have passed the £1bn mark two weeks later than in 2010 with David Nicholls' One Day the biggest selling book of the year to date.

In total, £29.5m was spent at UK booksellers in the week ending 24th September, bringing the 2011 total to £1.008bn. However, the figure is down 5.3%, or £53m on 2010, when book sales passed the £1bn mark on 11th September.

The decline in printed book sales appears largely due to the transfer of sales from print to digital, with recent reports from many UK publishers suggesting digital book sales now account for around 9-10% of their overall book sales compared to 4-5% last year.

According to Nielsen BookScan top 5,000 bestseller list data for the 38 weeks to 24th September period, sales of novels have been hit the most by the migration to digital. With fiction titles dominating the Amazon Kindle, Apple iBooks and Waterstones.com e-book charts, spending on novels in 2011 is down approximately 10% year-on-year.

In comparison, spending on non-fiction books is slightly ahead of last year, while children's book sales are down marginally due principally to a decline in the popularity of dark romance novels. Sales in the summer have been particularly poor, falling 8%
year-on-year in July, 9.3% in August and by more than 10% in September.

In a difficult year for traditional booksellers, David Nicholls' One Day (Hodder) sold 756,000 copies across all editions. Jamie Oliver's Jamie's 30-minute Meals (Michael Joseph) was the biggest seller in revenue terms, its 453,000 sales converting to £6.2m at the tills, which is around £2m more than the amount spent on One Day.

2011's bestselling books

1) David Nicholls' One Day (Hodder) 756,000
2) Jamie Oliver's Jamie's 30-minute Meals (Michael Joseph) 453,000
3) Emma Donoghue's Room (Pan) 387,000
4) Dawn French's A Tiny Bit Marvellous (Penguin) 349,000
5) John Grisham's The Confession (Arrow) 318,000
6) Stieg Larsson's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Quercus) 286,000
7) Stieg Larsson's The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest (Quercus) 274,000
8) Marian Keyes' The Brightest Star in the Sky (Penguin) 271,000
9) Kate McCann's Madeleine (Bantam Press) 266,000
10) Stieg Larsson's The Girl Who Played with Fire (Quercus) 260,000
 

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The printed book is not dead. Repeat, the printed book is NOT dead.
So why do do we talk ourselves into believing it is? Of course e-books have their place, and e-commerce has its place, but let us not bite off completely the hand that has fed many of us for decades.

Quite agree with Patrick. Books will always be beautiful items to hold and treasure while reading and we need all our book publishers and sellers to respect the need to continue with the printed book, and be respected and supported for producing them.
There is still plenty of space in the market for the e-book alongside its paper original!

Well said Patrick. E-books with 9-10% of the market are currently it seems getting a totaly disproportionate share of the press and media coverage.

Hmmm. Agree, of course, but this IS a news piece on printed book sales passing £1bn.

Agreed - they're not dead.

Just won't be sold in bookshops anymore.

Because of publisher's stupidity, there won't be any. Very soon.

Wait for Christmas to be over before declaring the printed book -and bookshops- are dead.

You may be surprised...

Do you people actually go into a book shop? Ever??
My shop has never had no people in it (when we're open)The book (and bookshops) won't die out because of a bit of technology. Books are not just something to read, they also decorate a room, you can't do that with an e-reader, how exciting is it to open a present and it's a gift card to spend on e-books? it's not. Both formats will co-exsist, much like blu-ray and DVDs.

Maybe e readers are DVD, iPads are Blueray.

What does that make printed books? VHS? Betamax?

If e readers are DVDs... then printed books are like the films that get made (and seen) in order for people to then be interested enough to buy the dvd.

And a book in your hand never gets a low battery.

The printed book is not dead. Repeat, the printed book is NOT dead.
So why do do we talk ourselves into believing it is? Of course e-books have their place, and e-commerce has its place, but let us not bite off completely the hand that has fed many of us for decades.

Quite agree with Patrick. Books will always be beautiful items to hold and treasure while reading and we need all our book publishers and sellers to respect the need to continue with the printed book, and be respected and supported for producing them.
There is still plenty of space in the market for the e-book alongside its paper original!

Well said Patrick. E-books with 9-10% of the market are currently it seems getting a totaly disproportionate share of the press and media coverage.

Hmmm. Agree, of course, but this IS a news piece on printed book sales passing £1bn.

Agreed - they're not dead.

Just won't be sold in bookshops anymore.

Because of publisher's stupidity, there won't be any. Very soon.

Wait for Christmas to be over before declaring the printed book -and bookshops- are dead.

You may be surprised...

Do you people actually go into a book shop? Ever??
My shop has never had no people in it (when we're open)The book (and bookshops) won't die out because of a bit of technology. Books are not just something to read, they also decorate a room, you can't do that with an e-reader, how exciting is it to open a present and it's a gift card to spend on e-books? it's not. Both formats will co-exsist, much like blu-ray and DVDs.

Maybe e readers are DVD, iPads are Blueray.

What does that make printed books? VHS? Betamax?

If e readers are DVDs... then printed books are like the films that get made (and seen) in order for people to then be interested enough to buy the dvd.

And a book in your hand never gets a low battery.