Monday, July 20, 2020

The Evolution of the Book Publishing Industry

Following the birth of the internet there have been massive changes in the way we read books, one of the biggest changes to happen was the birth of the ebook.  Online publishing has changed the industry like nothing else, but for most creators it's a blessing in disguise.  Here are some of the biggest advancements.

Huge Changes in Customer Buying and Reading Behaviour

Ebooks have changed the publishing industry forever, but love them or hate them, they're here to stay.  Like every other newfangled contraption, ebooks have had a pretty bumpy ride.  With a drop in sales from 17.4% to 16.8% in the first quarter of 2020, according to the Hachette Book Group.  Things were starting to look bleak until Covid-19 hit and bookstores started closing.  Making digital books an instant bestseller, all thanks to an instant purchase, and availability on apps, tablets or e-readers.

What I forgot to mention is the fact that the rest of the world is starting to catch up with this global phenomenon,  making it easier than ever to purchase a book via mobile phone.
Knowledge, Education and Entertainment is a Must-Have for Anyone with a Mobile Phone

In countries such as Africa, South America, and Asia where desktops and laptops are hard to come by for many people, mobile phones are the only connection to the outside world.  This opens up new markets for creators craving new audiences.

The age of the pandemic has given rise to a new minimalist culture, as mentioned in a previous paragraph, this has shown how practical ebooks really are, and how much they're needed in times of crisis.  For the lovers of technology, and the need to have less stuff, you can listen to your books through membership programs such as audible, while taking up one of Amazon's other reading subscriptions such as  Prime Reading and Kindle Unlimited. 

✸With Kindle Unlimited you have access to over 1 million Kindle ebooks, Audible audiobook companions, digital newspapers, magazines, and comic books, at the cost of a $9.99 monthly fee.

✸Amazon Prime Reading is part of Amazon Prime, which gives you a number of benefits if you sign up and pay the monthly fee of $12.99.

There's a whole generation that's grown up knowing nothing else but digital reading.  Compared to an older generation that are just getting to know it.  The over 60s is a popular market for ebooks, because you can alter your ebook font size when you want to. 

In the days before ebooks, large print books were difficult to get a hold of, and only certain books could be purchased in the form of an audiobook from local libraries.  The world has opened up for the Boomer Generation, giving them access to just about any book they can think of. 

The invention of voice controlled technology such as Amazon Alexa and Google Home could be the next step in the way we listen to books.

Where Does that Leave the Book Printing Industry?

E-commerce has gone through the roof since lockdown started.  People have been left with nowhere else to go but the internet.  Leaving high street bookstores scrambling to get their websites setup or up-to-date in order to keep up with demand. 

As a first-time author you're more likely to be found online than in a bookstore on the high street these days.  Publishers such as Amazon offer advertising to their publishers, allowing them to expand their audiences, and revenue streams.

How Indie Authors have Changed the Publishing Industry

Independent authors, or indie authors, have put independent creators on the map.  They've put the creativity back into writing, and made writing more authentic and edgy again.

Many writers prefer to stay small, instead of linking with big corporations that may have more ambiguous plans in mind.

Think about your current shopping habits.

  • Do you listen to music by indie artists, or watch indie movies?
  • Do you prefer the taste of a locally brewed beer, or do you buy your meat from your local butcher?
  • Are all your vegetables grown by local sellers?
  • Do you like gifts from a big store such as John Lewis, or do you prefer a smaller seller on Not on the High Street?

People like hand-made and locally grown produce, they also like the feeling of buying jewellery from a seller that has made the item by hand.  Online learning has changed the way students learn, especially when people are no longer learning like they used to on university campuses, or in colleges.These days you can find just about any kind of course you want online, if you know where to look.

At this moment in time creators are becoming more and more valued, and that's a thrilling thought.
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