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Book and E-book Market Research - September 2012

About the Book and E-book Market Research Report

In the eighteen months or so since Mintel last reported on the market for books and e-books, the publishing landscape has changed considerably: the balance of power when it comes to the pricing of e-books has shifted very markedly in favour of Amazon, which has also managed to further increase its already dominant market share. A great deal of these gains can be attributed to the success of its Kindle platform within the e-book market. Publishers have been reporting stratospheric growth rates for sales of e-books and, with steady growth in the ownership of e-readers and tablet PCs, demand shows no sign of abating.

Meanwhile, the market has been taken by storm by the surprise growth in the popularity of erotica, with a single trilogy blowing away all book sales records, including those of bestselling authors like JK Rowling and Dan Brown.

Despite most of the focus of publishers and media attention being on e-books, print remains the dominant medium for books, and reports of its imminent demise are premature. In fact, this report identifies considerable support and demand for print among book buyers, which is likely to mean that the two formats will survive and thrive alongside one another, rather than one format replacing the other.

Mintel last reported on this market in Books and e-books – UK, February 2011. This report assesses the current status of the market, including the division of sales between print and e-books and examines consumer buying behaviour and considerations, as well as attitudes and opinions surrounding book buying, discovery and reading.

This report covers the purchase of books through all sources, and the total market sizes provided also include institutional book sales.However, the main focus of this report is on purchases by private consumers, what Nielsen BookScan terms the Total Consumer Market, and market size estimates are also provided for this sector of the industry.

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Definition
        • Abbreviations
        • Executive Summary

            • Consumer book sales set to rise
              • Figure 1: UK consumer book market size and forecast, 2007-17
            • Market factors
              • Figure 2: Trends in device ownership levels, January 2012-July 2012
            • Pricing continues to hit the headlines
              • Events boost sales
                • Companies, products and innovation
                  • Figure 3: UK publishers’ share of total consumer market, 2011
                • The consumer
                  • Figure 4: Book buying behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                  • Figure 5: Book buying considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                  • Figure 6: Book buying and discovery, June 2012
                  • Figure 7: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, June 2012
                  • Figure 8: Books and e-books target groups, June 2012
                • What we think
                • Issues in the Market

                    • Is print doomed as a book format?
                      • How important is it to consumers to be able to read e-books on multiple devices?
                        • Will the tablet become the reading device of choice?
                          • What are the opportunities for bundling together different types of book?
                          • Trend Application

                            • Trend: Home of the Senses
                              • Trend: Guiding Choice
                                • 2015 Inspire Prediction: Access, Anything, Anywhere
                                • Market Drivers

                                  • Key points
                                    • Device ownership levels
                                      • Figure 9: Trends in device ownership levels, January 2012-July 2012
                                      • Figure 10: Device purchasing intentions in next three months, July 2012
                                    • Erotica comes of age
                                      • Fifty shades smashes all records
                                        • Sales explode
                                          • Mills & Boon targets erotica segment
                                            • e-book pricing hits the headlines
                                              • Digital Rights Management (DRM)
                                                • Library closures still a hot topic
                                                  • Literacy concerns abound
                                                    • Rise of the supermarkets
                                                      • Events drive awareness and sales
                                                        • Book programmes and book clubs also influence sales
                                                          • The growth of self-publishing
                                                            • Publishers move to outsource printing
                                                              • UK economy struggles to recover from global economic crisis
                                                                • Figure 11: GDP, PDI, consumer expenditure and savings, at constant 2012 prices, 2007-17
                                                              • Household incomes squeezed
                                                                • Figure 12: Trends in inflation and average weekly earnings, 2008-12
                                                              • Consumer confidence remains at low levels
                                                                • Figure 13: Trends in UK consumer confidence, January 2010-August 2012
                                                              • Public transport boom provides more demand for reading on-the-go
                                                                • Figure 14: Public transport journeys, 1981/82-2010/11
                                                              • Higher education enrolment growth has double benefits
                                                                • Figure 15: Higher Education enrolments*, by level of study, 2004/05-2010/11
                                                            • Competitive Context

                                                              • Key points
                                                                • How does the US book market compare to the UK?
                                                                  • Figure 16: Trends in number of titles published in the UK and US, 2007-11
                                                                  • Figure 17: Top 20 subjects in traditional book titles published in the US, 2007-11
                                                              • Who’s Innovating

                                                                • Key points
                                                                  • Publishers continue to push boundaries with new formats
                                                                    • Mobile apps flood onto the market
                                                                      • Bringing covers to life
                                                                        • Bardowl launches ‘Spotify for audiobooks’
                                                                          • Getting social: online communities, crowdsourcing and social media
                                                                            • Tempting readers with chapters
                                                                              • Authors tap into crowdsourcing
                                                                                • Wattpad enables discovery, sharing and collaboration
                                                                                  • New e-book stores target academic, education and business sectors
                                                                                    • A challenge for Kindle’s supremacy?
                                                                                      • Guardian seeks to bolster independent bookshops
                                                                                      • Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                          • Digital growth slows overall market decline
                                                                                            • Figure 18: UK total sales of books*, by value and volume, 2007-17
                                                                                          • 2013 to be the tipping point?
                                                                                            • Print will still have a role to play
                                                                                              • Physical book sales continue to decline
                                                                                                • Figure 19: UK total sales of physical books, by value and volume, 2007-11
                                                                                              • The consumer book market
                                                                                                • Figure 20: UK consumer book market, 2007-17
                                                                                                • Figure 21: UK total consumer market (TCM*) for books through the retail market, 2007-11
                                                                                                • Figure 22: UK consumer e-book market, 2007-11
                                                                                              • Forecast
                                                                                                • Figure 23: Forecast UK consumer books market value, 2007-17
                                                                                            • Segment Performance

                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                • Non-fiction is biggest sector ahead of academic/professional
                                                                                                  • Figure 24: UK total sales of physical books, by value, by segment 2007-11
                                                                                                  • Figure 25: UK total sales of books, by volume, by segment 2007-11
                                                                                                • Adult non-fiction prices rise by nearly a fifth
                                                                                                  • Figure 26: Average book prices, hardback and paperback, September 2005-September 2011
                                                                                                • The impact of e-books on fiction
                                                                                                  • Sector trends: e-books
                                                                                                    • Major publisher e-book sales trends
                                                                                                    • Market Share

                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                        • Hachette and Random House fight for market leadership
                                                                                                          • Figure 27: UK publishers’ share of total consumer market*, 2010-11
                                                                                                      • Companies and Products

                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                          • Industry overview
                                                                                                            • Figure 28: Trends in the number of UK publishers registering for their first ISBN prefix, 2007-11
                                                                                                            • Figure 29: Number of VAT-registered book publishers, by turnover size band, 2010-11
                                                                                                            • Figure 30: Number of VAT-registered book publishers, by employment size band, 2010-11
                                                                                                            • Figure 31: Number of VAT-registered book publishers, by region, 2010-11
                                                                                                            • Figure 32: Number of VAT-registered book publishers, by age of business, 2011
                                                                                                          • Bloomsbury Publishing plc
                                                                                                              • Figure 33: Bloomsbury Publishing plc financial results, 2007-12
                                                                                                              • Figure 34: Bloomsbury Publishing plc, breakdown of revenue by region, 2007-11
                                                                                                              • Figure 35: Bloomsbury Publishing plc, breakdown of revenue by segment, 2007-11
                                                                                                            • Hachette UK
                                                                                                                • Figure 36: Financial results of companies comprising Hachette UK, 2006-10
                                                                                                              • HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
                                                                                                                  • Figure 37: HarperCollins Publishers Ltd financial results, 2007-11
                                                                                                                  • Figure 38: HarperCollins Publishers Ltd breakdown of turnover by region, 2007-11
                                                                                                                • Independent Alliance
                                                                                                                    • Figure 39: Faber & Faber Ltd financial results, 2007-11
                                                                                                                    • Figure 40: Atlantic Books Ltd financial results, 2009-10
                                                                                                                    • Figure 41: Canongate Books Ltd financial results, 2009-10
                                                                                                                    • Figure 42: Profile Books Ltd financial results, 2010-11
                                                                                                                    • Figure 43: Quercus Publishing plc financial results, 2007-11
                                                                                                                  • Macmillan Publishers Ltd
                                                                                                                      • Figure 44: Macmillan Publishers Ltd financial results, 2006-10
                                                                                                                      • Figure 45: Macmillan Publishers Ltd turnover by business segment, 2006-10
                                                                                                                    • McGraw-Hill International (UK) Ltd
                                                                                                                        • Figure 46: McGraw-Hill International (UK) Ltd financial results 2006-10
                                                                                                                      • Oxford University Press
                                                                                                                          • Figure 47: Oxford University Press financial results, 2007-11
                                                                                                                        • Pearson plc
                                                                                                                            • Figure 48: Pearson plc financial results, 2007-11
                                                                                                                            • Figure 49: Pearson plc breakdown of revenue by segment, 2007-11
                                                                                                                          • The Random House Group Ltd
                                                                                                                              • Figure 50: The Random House Group Ltd financial results, 2006-10
                                                                                                                              • Figure 51: The Random House Group ltd, breakdown of turnover by region, 2006-10
                                                                                                                            • Simon & Schuster (UK) Ltd
                                                                                                                              • Figure 52: Simon & Schuster (UK) Ltd financial results, 2006-10
                                                                                                                              • Figure 53: Simon & Schuster (UK) Ltd, breakdown of turnover by region, 2006-10
                                                                                                                          • Channels to Market

                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                              • March of the internet channel continues apace
                                                                                                                                • Figure 54: Share of book sales*, by volume and value, by distribution channel, 2009 and 2010
                                                                                                                              • The specialist retailers
                                                                                                                                • Figure 55: Brief overview of major bookshops, July 2012
                                                                                                                              • Waterstones goes for broke
                                                                                                                                • WH Smith defends its position
                                                                                                                                  • Foyles shakes off its dowdy image
                                                                                                                                    • Online and non-specialist retailers
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 56: Brief overview of other major retailers, July 2012
                                                                                                                                    • Kindle drives Amazon forward
                                                                                                                                      • Supermarkets look for a slice of the action
                                                                                                                                        • Independent booksellers struggle to stay relevant
                                                                                                                                        • Brand Communication and Promotion

                                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 57: Top 20 advertisers in book publishing and retail, 2008-11
                                                                                                                                          • Brand spend quite fragmented
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 58: Top 20 book brands advertised in 2011
                                                                                                                                          • Outdoor is the favoured media channel for books
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 59: Book publishing and retail advertising spend by type of media, 2011
                                                                                                                                          • Significant campaigns/promotions/sponsorships
                                                                                                                                          • Book Buying and Reading Behaviour

                                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                                              • Paperbacks dominate book buying
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 60: Book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                              • Four times as many people buy print books than e-books
                                                                                                                                                • e-books make biggest impact on fiction
                                                                                                                                                  • One in ten adults has read a book on a laptop
                                                                                                                                                    • Book buying and digital reading correlations
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 61: Book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by most popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                  • Book Buying and Reading Considerations

                                                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                                                      • Consumers most likely to consider buying more hardbacks in next year
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 62: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                      • Quarter of print book buyers expect to buy an e-book in the next year
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 63: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by most popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                    • Book Buying and Discovery

                                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                                        • Almost half of book buyers use the online channel
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 64: Book buying and discovery, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                        • Impulse reads?
                                                                                                                                                          • A new lease of life for libraries?
                                                                                                                                                            • Browsing in bookshops and then buying online is an issue
                                                                                                                                                              • It’s good to talk
                                                                                                                                                                • A positive year ahead for e-readers
                                                                                                                                                                  • E-book buyers less likely to browse, more influenced by reviews and recommendations
                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 65: Book buying and discovery, by most popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                • Attitudes Towards Books, Bookshops and Reading

                                                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                    • Consumers expect e-books to cost a lot less than print
                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 66: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                    • A stay of execution for print?
                                                                                                                                                                      • Consumers lukewarm on in-store e-book ordering and bundles
                                                                                                                                                                        • E-book buyers fail to feel the magic…
                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 67: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by most popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                        • …but print buyers do
                                                                                                                                                                          • More tactile technology required?
                                                                                                                                                                            • Is it in the interest of publishers to subsidise digital reading technology?
                                                                                                                                                                            • Books and e-books Targeting Opportunities

                                                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 68: Books and e-books target groups, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                              • Bibliophiles
                                                                                                                                                                                • Traditionalists
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Digitalists
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Apathetic
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Bibliophiles most likely to buy books but Digitalists not far behind
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 69: Book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by target groups, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Digitalists to continue leading migration to e-books
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 70: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by target groups, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Market Size Forecast Scenarios

                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 71: UK consumer book market forecast scenarios, 2012-17
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Book Buying and Reading Behaviour

                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 72: Most popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 73: Next most popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 74: Other book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 75: Least popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 76: Book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by next most popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 77: Book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by other book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 78: Book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by least popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Book buying and reading and technology ownership
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 79: Book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by most popular technology ownership, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 80: Book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, by personal technology ownership, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Book Buying and Reading Considerations

                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 81: Most popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 82: Next most popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 83: Other book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 84: Least popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 85: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by next most popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 86: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by other book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 87: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by least popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 88: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by most popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 89: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by next most popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 90: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 91: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by other book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 92: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by least popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 93: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by most popular technology ownership, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 94: Book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, by personal technology ownership, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Book Buying and Discovery

                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 95: Most popular book buying and discovery, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 96: Next most popular book buying and discovery, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 97: Book buying and discovery, by most popular book buying and discovery, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 98: Book buying and discovery, by next most popular book buying and discovery, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 99: Book buying and discovery, by next most popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 100: Book buying and discovery, by other book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 101: Book buying and discovery, by least popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 102: Book buying and discovery, by most popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 103: Book buying and discovery, by next most popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 104: Book buying and discovery, by other book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 105: Book buying and discovery, by least popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 106: Book buying and discovery, by most popular technology ownership, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 107: Book buying and discovery, by personal technology ownership, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Attitudes towards Books, Bookshops and Reading

                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 108: Most popular attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 109: Next most popular attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 110: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by most popular attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 111: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by next most popular attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 112: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by next most popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 113: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by other book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 114: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by least popular book buying and reading behaviour in the past 12 months, by type, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 115: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by most popular book buying and discovery, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 116: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by next most popular book buying and discovery, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 117: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by most popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 118: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by next most popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 119: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by other book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 120: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by least popular book buying and reading considerations for the next 12 months, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 121: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by most popular technology ownership, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 122: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by personal technology ownership, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Books and e-books Targeting Opportunities

                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 123: Books and e-books target groups, by demographics, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 124: Book buying and discovery, by target groups, June 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 125: Attitudes towards books, bookshops and reading, by target groups, June 2012

                                                                                                                                                                                    Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                                    • Bloomsbury Publishing plc
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Faber and Faber Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Financial Times Group
                                                                                                                                                                                    • HarperCollins Publishers Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Hodder Headline
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Icon Books Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Little Brown Book Group
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Macmillan Publishers Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                                    • News Corporation (The)
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Octopus Publishing Group
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Orion Publishing Group
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Oxford University Press
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Pearson plc
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Profile Books Limited
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Quercus Publishing Plc
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Random House, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Simon & Schuster
                                                                                                                                                                                    • The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                    • The Penguin Group

                                                                                                                                                                                    Book and E-book Market Research - September 2012

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