In terms of the book, the United States, it’s a bit the future. The diversity found there could be an indicator of what lies ahead: more and more e-books published by conventional publishers but also on account of the author, audiobook growing steadily, and sales traditional paper books that eventually wear is not too bad.
According to statistics compiled by BookStat in 2013 ebooks sales represent a quarter of total book sales. An increase of over 20% in five years. But the paper pulls out of the game. In 2012, paperback books accounted for 42% market share and hardcover books, 27%.
This breakthrough digital book is due on arrival, in 2007, the eReader Amazon (Kindle) to the US market (it was launched in France in 2010). Were added to other brand-readers and Apple’s iPad, sold over 35 million copies in the country.
These major trends do not prevent the future of books to debate in the United States. Some experts believe that the market has reached an equilibrium shape or a saturation point, and the ebook will not entice more American players in the coming years. Others believe instead that its scope for growth is still very large. “The book industry has so many facets … Each may develop in its own way, Jane Friedman analysis, former editor and professor of digital publishing at the University of Virginia. The informative book is already suffering from competition from search engines like Google. What good is to buy a book on gardening when there is so much free stuff online? ”
But the story is written differently from novels, fiction or memoirs. “This is a fascinating area to see where the situation comes down to a matter of preference: some remain committed to paper, a form of talisman, while others embrace the ebook. And if the formats evolve, the text experience is thereby not upset. ”
Recipe. In this sector, the revolution rather concerns the publishing and distribution methods. Unable to minimize the impact of Amazon. If the giant online sales refuse to disclose its figures, it is no secret that sales of books all media are thriving. The recipe for success? The supply and availability, almost unlimited, and very low prices compared to the rates in force in American bookstores. Here, no fixed price law, as in France, and bound books often sell for more than $ 25 (18 euros).
The situation scares increasingly booksellers. Sales of the largest US chain, Barnes & Noble, tumble. “Opposite, independent booksellers resume the bull by the horns. But this is a drop of water compared to sales of Amazon! “Notes Evan Hughes, author and journalist publishing industry specialist. “What is interesting is that the libraries are transformed into something other than just stores in the United States. Seller’s future work for her neighborhood, her community, it does not do it only visit to buy, “says Jane Friedman. As in France, the giant online sales makes fools publishers with its bargain prices. And there’s no reason it stops …
Illegal agreement. This summer, the US court has validated the Amazon strategy condemning Apple to pay damages to his iPad ebook buyers. Because Apple had reached an agreement with the publishers Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Penguin and Simon & Schuster to increase the price of ebooks over the $ 9.99 set by Amazon for its new products and bestsellers. The agreement was unlawful. “But the price set by Amazon continues to debate. Is this really a fair price for a book, allowing authors to live? One thing is certain: at present, one author affects less than ebook royalties on a paper book, while the publisher keeps the same margin. There is really no reason for it, “says Evan Hughes.
“Revolution”. These economic changes are not without consequences. In the United States, the authors decide to spend editor and opt for self-publishing. A growing phenomenon. The Bowker study society, only to quantify this trend accounts 391,000 self-published books in the United States in 2012, against 422 in 2007! This is done for example … on Amazon via Kindle Direct Publishing service. It is also a service provided by dedicated sites like Smashwords, Create Space NetMinds, Authors Solution … They allow any independent author published at the author, ebook or on paper, but without the risks included this type of publication in the past, namely the obligation for the writer to commit to selling his own stock of books. “This is a revolution. This allows authors who were rejected by publishers to publish, but also to develop a trusting relationship with their readers. They talk about their works on social networks, are a small loyal following and eventually take off through word of mouth, “said Jane Friedman. This is the story of the author Hugh Howey, Amazon phenomenon since 2011, whose supernatural series “Wool” has sold millions of copies. Or EL James, author of the autopubliée soft-porn trilogy Fifty Shades of Gray ultimately distributed by the publisher Random House in 2012 …
These two successes illustrate the most popular genres in this sector: the science fiction and erotic literature. Works that are distinguished by their low price, 1 to 6 dollars. Commercial success is assured. This year, self-published ebooks ended up in the ranking of best-selling established by the New York Times, whose erotic novel Damaged, HM Ward, sold over 2 million copies. Traditional publishers have to worry about their future … but the book has bright future in the United States.