2022
9
UK Books and E-Books Market Report 2022
2022-10-21T04:07:35+01:00
OX1100541
2195
156730
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Report
en_GB
“While the pandemic instilled or revived a lasting love of reading for some, others have abandoned their pandemic reading habits. Social media has proven it can drive the physical books…

UK Books and E-Books Market Report 2022

£ 2,195 (Excl.Tax)

Description

The UK Books and E-books Market Report examines consumers’ purchasing and reading habits, how the books and e-books market has changed following a boost to reading during the pandemic, and how technology is transforming the UK books market. This report covers the books and e-books market share, market forecast, market segmentation and key reading trends in 2022.

Current Books and E-books Market Landscape

Demand for books increased during the COVID-19 pandemic while social media trends such as BookTok have helped drive ongoing interest. But there are signs this wave of interest in the UK books market is waning, and while sales are up, it is very unlikely to match the much higher rate of inflation currently being experienced. The economic uncertainty will force consumers to make tough choices, albeit books are a relatively low-cost purchase, so those with a love of reading are unlikely to cut back too much.

UK Books Market Share and Reading Trends in 2022

During rising inflation, the second-hand book market and Amazon may increase market share while independent and high street bookstores struggle as readers look to maintain access while seeking ways to save money.

As consumers take a closer look at their mental health, experiences like reading that speak to holistic wellbeing, are being actively sought out. This means targeting consumer moods and spreading positivity becomes an engaging focus for the UK books market. This trend is driving growth in the self-help genre as stressed-out readers seek advice on how to cope with uncertain times

  • Books and e-books market size: The market reached £1.5 billion in 2021, and is expected to reach £1.6 billion in 2022.
  • UK books market share: Amazon is a leading retailer in the UK books market, 59% of book buyers have bought from Amazon in the last 12 months.
  • UK books market consumer behaviour: 31% of book buyers have watched a book review on social media in the last 12 months.
  • Books and e-books market trends: 68% of readers choose to read to improve their mental health.

Future Trends in the UK Books Market

The biggest threat to the books market continues to be the battle for attention. However, the success of social media and influencers in driving book discovery, highlights how it can be a driver of the books and e-books market rather than just competition for attention.

In the longer term, as inflation comes down, the UK books market will find it starts to grow again in real terms. Future innovations in the UK books market, such as the metaverse and virtual reality, offer a glimpse of an exciting, experiential online experience where readers can enjoy immersive book launches, meet authors and share book recommendations in digital book clubs.

To discover more about the UK Books and E-books Market Report 2022, read our UK Magazine Market Report 2022, or take a look at our Media and Books Market Research Reports.

Quickly Understand

  • How inflation and economic uncertainty are mpacting the books and e-books market.
  • How the books and e-books market has changed following the boost to reading during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • How the e-book market and audiobook subscriptions are faring as consumers look to reduce household spending.
  • The online and offline retailers buy books.
  • How technology is transforming the UK books market and the ongoing potential for change, including social media and the metaverse.
  • Explores the books and e-books market share and size.

Covered in this Report

Brands:  Waterstones, Spotify, Blackwell’s, TikTok, Amazon Prime, Apple Music, WHSmiths, The Works, Bookshop.org, Foyles, Daunt Books, Penguin Books, The Publishers Association, Society of Authors, The Booksellers Association, Google Play, Kyobo Book Centre, Booker Prize Foundation, Spiracle, Sonantic, MacMllian Publishing Ltd, Harper Collins Publishing, Bibliophile Books, Simon & Schuster Publishers, Steven Green, Lifebook Ltd, Signature Gifts, Lost My Name Ltd, Canongate Books.

Products: Print and digital books (e-books and audiobooks).

Expert Analysis from a Specialist in the Media & Books Sector

This report, written by Grace Alexander, a leading analyst in the media and books sector, delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends in the UK books market and add expert context to the numbers.

While the pandemic instilled or revived a lasting love of reading for some, others have abandoned their pandemic reading habits. Social media has proven it can drive the physical books market, rather than competing with it, and this is likely to continue with the experiential and immersive nature of the metaverse offering an exciting new way for the industry to bring the joy of reading to a new generation.”

Grace Alexander Grace Alexander
Research Analyst

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

      • Key issues covered in this Report
        • Products covered in this Report
        • Executive Summary

            • The five-year outlook for the books market
              • Figure 1: Category outlook, 2022-27
            • The market
              • Market for books and e-books estimated to be worth £1.6 billion in 2022
                • Figure 2: Books and e-books market value, 2017-22
              • Market forecast for slow but steady growth
                • Figure 3: Market forecast for books and e-books, 2017-27
              • Companies and brands
                • Waterstones acquires Blackwell’s to extend high street domination
                  • Spotify expands its audiobook offering
                    • Social media and TikTok majorly influence book industry
                      • The consumer
                        • Print books are the most popular book purchase
                          • Figure 4: Book purchases in the last 12 months, 2022
                        • Proportion reading books continues to fall after pandemic-induced peak
                          • Audiobooks on the rise
                            • Figure 5: Reading habits, 2022
                          • Digital subscriptions on the rise, but not for e-books
                            • Figure 6: E-book and audiobook subscriptions, 2022
                          • Amazon continues to dominate book selling
                            • Figure 7: Where they shopped for books, online and in-store, 2022
                          • Social media is increasingly significant, especially for young people
                            • Figure 8: Impact of social media on book buying, 2022
                          • Highlight the mental health benefits of reading
                            • Figure 9: Attitudes towards buying books, 2022
                          • Harness the power of AR/VR to reinvigorate book industry
                            • Figure 10: Consumer interest in reading related events/products, 2022
                        • Issues and Insights

                          • Experiential nature of book shopping should not be limited to in-person
                            • Books industry should mobilise around mental health associations
                              • AI-narrated audiobooks offer a low-cost entry to market
                              • Market Size and Performance

                                • Market for books and e-books worth £1.5 billion
                                  • 2022 will prove yet another challenging year
                                    • Figure 11: Market size for books and e-books, 2017-22
                                • Market Forecast

                                  • Books market set for real terms decline
                                    • Figure 12: Category outlook, 2022-27
                                  • Growth set to continue but will struggle to match inflation
                                    • Figure 13: Market forecast for books and e-books, 2017-27
                                    • Figure 14: UK publishers UK sales of consumer books, (net invoiced value), 2017-27
                                  • Print market set for slow but steady growth
                                    • Figure 15: Market forecast for UK publishers UK sales of consumer print books, (net invoiced value), 2017-27
                                    • Figure 16: Market forecast for UK publishers UK sales of consumer print books, (net invoiced value), 2017-27
                                  • E-books struggle to maintain pandemic boom
                                    • Figure 17: Market forecast for UK publishers UK sales of consumer digital books (net invoiced value), 2017-27
                                    • Figure 18: Market forecast for UK publishers UK sales of consumer digital books (net invoiced value), 2017-27
                                  • Learnings from the last income squeeze
                                    • Forecast methodology
                                    • Market Drivers

                                      • Inflation is the key concern for consumers and brands
                                        • Consumer spending power will be curbed
                                          • Unemployment is at a near-50 year low
                                            • Consumers’ financial wellbeing has fallen from the highs of 2021…
                                              • Figure 19: Household financial wellbeing index, 2016-22
                                            • …and most people are feeling the effects of price rises
                                              • Decline in library numbers could pose a threat to the culture of reading
                                                • Proposed change to copyright laws in publishing not followed through
                                                  • Stricter digital piracy measures in Europe
                                                  • Competitive Strategies

                                                    • Waterstones acquires Blackwell’s to extend high street domination
                                                      • Social media increasingly utilised to boost readership
                                                        • Technology innovations open up novel opportunities within book industry
                                                          • Augmented reality books under development at University of Surrey
                                                            • Figure 20: Next Generation Paper project
                                                          • Digital worlds open up potential to publish books as NFTs
                                                            • Pearson plans to sell its textbooks as NFTs
                                                              • Pushing sustainability and ethics in publishing
                                                                • Diversity and inclusion comes to the fore
                                                                  • Society of Authors adds new disability-focused book award
                                                                    • Underrepresented authors promoted as Penguin Books join forces with Twinkl Educational Publishing
                                                                      • Books distributed to Ukrainian refugees amid crisis
                                                                        • Audiobooks identified as substantial untapped market by Spotify
                                                                          • Number of independent bookstores rises
                                                                          • Launch Activity and Innovation

                                                                            • TikTok launches virtual book club
                                                                              • Booker Prize looks to foster social media activity with a bookclub contest
                                                                                • Spiracle adds an independent flavour to the audiobook market
                                                                                  • Google Play Books adds AI audiobook narration
                                                                                    • Spotify makes moves into the audiobook market
                                                                                      • New scheme enables authors to earn from second-hand sales
                                                                                        • Is the bookstore of the future in the metaverse?
                                                                                        • Advertising and Marketing Activity

                                                                                          • Adspend on books slowly recovers from pandemic-induced dip
                                                                                            • Figure 21: Total above-the line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on books and e-books, 2017/18-2021/22
                                                                                          • Some publishers remain cautious, whilst others more than double adspend
                                                                                            • Figure 22: Above-the line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on books and e-books, by advertiser, 2021/22
                                                                                          • Pandemic causes a fragmentation in spending to occur
                                                                                            • Figure 23: Breakdown of above-the line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on books and e-books, by media type, 2017/18-2021/22
                                                                                          • Smaller publishers focus spending
                                                                                            • Figure 24: Above-the line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on books and e-books, by advertiser and media type, 2021/22
                                                                                          • Nielsen Ad Intel coverage
                                                                                          • Book Buying Habits

                                                                                            • Generation Z are most likely to have purchased a book in the last year
                                                                                              • Figure 25: Book purchases in the last 12 months, 2022
                                                                                            • Print book buyers fall below pre-pandemic levels
                                                                                              • Figure 26: Book buying habits (NET), 2019-22
                                                                                            • Women more likely to be book buyers than men
                                                                                              • Younger men are key purchasers of audiobooks
                                                                                                • Figure 27: Book buying habits (NET), 2019-22
                                                                                            • Book Reading Habits

                                                                                              • Reading habits fall back after pandemic-induced peak
                                                                                                • Younger readers spearhead e-book reading…
                                                                                                  • …but read on smartphones instead of e-readers
                                                                                                    • Figure 28: Book reading habits, by format (NET), 2019-22
                                                                                                  • Audiobooks are the ideal way for readers to fit books into busy lives
                                                                                                    • Opportunity for cross-promotion of e-books and audiobooks
                                                                                                      • Figure 29: Reading habits, 2022
                                                                                                  • E-book and Audiobook Subscriptions

                                                                                                    • Almost half of e-book readers have a subscription
                                                                                                      • Figure 30: E-book subscriptions, 2019-22
                                                                                                    • Growing interest in audiobook subscription services
                                                                                                      • Offer free trials to draw customers in
                                                                                                        • Figure 31: Audiobook subscriptions, 2019-22
                                                                                                    • Book Retailers Used

                                                                                                      • Amazon dominates book buying
                                                                                                        • Figure 32: Retailers used to buy print books in the past 12 months, 2022
                                                                                                      • Harness virtual technologies to create online experiences that rival in-person shopping
                                                                                                        • Figure 33: Retailers used to buy print books online in the past 12 months, 2022
                                                                                                      • Consumers crave in-store experiences
                                                                                                        • Figure 34: Retailers used to buy print books in-store in the past 12 months, 2022
                                                                                                    • Books and Social Media

                                                                                                      • Social media activity is increasingly shaping the industry
                                                                                                        • Figure 35: Social media and attitudes towards reading books, 2022
                                                                                                      • Harness the power of TikTok to tap into younger readership
                                                                                                          • Figure 36: Social media and attitudes towards reading books, by generation, 2022
                                                                                                      • Attitudes towards Books

                                                                                                        • Economic and environmental pressures drive interest in second-hand market
                                                                                                          • Price is of high importance to younger readers
                                                                                                            • Figure 37: Circular economy and attitudes towards reading books, 2022
                                                                                                          • TV/film adaptations offer a growing opportunity
                                                                                                            • Now is the time to strengthen reading’s associations with mental health
                                                                                                              • Figure 38: Attitudes towards books and reading, 2022
                                                                                                          • Ways to Engage Book Buyers

                                                                                                            • Add an emotional element to loyalty schemes
                                                                                                              • A quarter of digital book buyers are interested in print/digital book bundles
                                                                                                                • Figure 39: Ways to engage readers, 2022
                                                                                                              • Young people most interested in use of AR/VR in book industry
                                                                                                                • Utilise VR to immerse readers in literary worlds…
                                                                                                                  • …and add excitement to book-related events
                                                                                                                    • Figure 40: Interest in potential technology-related methods of engagement, 2022
                                                                                                                • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                                                    • Abbreviations
                                                                                                                      • Consumer research methodology
                                                                                                                      • Appendix – Forecast Methodology

                                                                                                                        • Market forecast and prediction intervals
                                                                                                                          • Figure 41: Market forecast and prediction intervals for the total books and e-books market, 2022-27
                                                                                                                          • Figure 42: Market forecast and prediction intervals for the printed books market, 2022-27
                                                                                                                          • Figure 43: Market forecast and prediction intervals for the e-books market, 2022-27
                                                                                                                        • Market drivers and assumptions
                                                                                                                          • Forecast methodology

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