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Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers
 

Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers

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Elastic Path Software www.elasticpath.com “Ebook sales will triple to $2.8 billion by 2015, opening up massive opportunities for publishers, booksellers, and device makers. As spend shifts rapidly ...

Elastic Path Software www.elasticpath.com “Ebook sales will triple to $2.8 billion by 2015, opening up massive opportunities for publishers, booksellers, and device makers. As spend shifts rapidly from print to digital, industry players must act fast to re-invent their processes, business models, and products to maintain a foothold in this brave new publishing world.”

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    Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers Document Transcript

    • Brave New Publishing World:Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on ConsumersA consumer research study by Elastic Path™ Software Inc.“Ebook sales will triple to $2.8 billion by2015, opening up massive opportunitiesfor publishers, booksellers, and devicemakers. As spend shifts rapidly from printto digital, industry players must act fast tore-invent their processes, business models,and products to maintain a foothold in thisbrave new publishing world.”
    • Survey Background This 2011 online study polled 1,006 US adults over the age of 18 who had read at least one ebook in the past month. The survey was developed to examine consumer attitudes and behaviors towards print and digital books. Executive Summary The explosive growth of ereading is creating the biggest change to the publishing industry since Gutenberg. Bricks-and-mortar sales are declining as spend shifts rapidly from print to ebooks. The rapid proliferation and adoption of multi-purpose devices like the Apple iPad and dedicated ereaders by tens of millions of US consumers is accelerating this trend. Increased reading across multiple devices and a lack of format and metadata standards are forcing publishers to rethink the way they create and deliver content to gain greater agility. By adopting flexible technologies and processes, they can create content once and distribute it simultaneously across multiple formats, platforms, and screens. Amazon dominates ebook discovery and sales; 71% of those who have purchased ebooks bought from the Kindle store in the past year. Other industry players looking to create viable digital business models should look to the more evolved video, gaming, and music industries for inspiration in finding new ways to monetize. Savvy market participants will act quickly to create innovative ownership models, products, and marketing strategies.www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 2
    • Key Findings Multi-functional devices are gaining popularity for reading. The rapid proliferation of smartphones, tablets, and ereaders has led to an increase in reading across multiple devices. Although half of ebook readers regularly read on personal computers, 35% also now read on smartphones such as the Apple iPhone and 23% on tablets [Figure 1]. Of the dedicated ereaders designed solely for reading, Amazon’s Kindle enjoys by far the highest adoption; 46% of ebook readers use it regularly. The Kindle faces rivalry from commercially successful, multi-use devices like the iPad, the iPhone, and other tablets and smartphones, particularly amongst younger demographics. Unlike dedicated ereaders, multi-function mobile devices can be used for web-surfing, video, games and other tasks in addition to reading. They offer greater convenience for those on-the-go with limited bag space, allow ebooks to be read in color, and provide an engaging touchscreen experience. Which of the following devices do you regularly use to read ebooks? Laptop or desktop computer 50% Amazon Kindle 46% Apple iPad 19% Apple iPhone 18% Barnes & Noble Nook 17% Other smartphone (e.g. Android, Blackberry) 17% Sony Reader 10% Kobo ereader 6% Other tablet computer 4% Alex Reader 3% Other 6% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Base: 1,006 US adult ebook readers [Figure 1]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 3
    • Digital book buying is commonplace across all ebook reader demographics. No matter their age, affluence or level of education, ebook readers are spending on both print and digital publications; 87% bought print books in the past year while 85% purchased ebooks [Figure 2]. Only a small minority are reading free publications exclusively. Of those surveyed, 49% spent over $50 on print books, with 36% spending a similar amount on digital books. The ever increasing availability of low cost titles propagated by Amazon, combined with the proliferation of affordable, easy-to-use ereading devices, has created a large scale market for ebooks. Unsurprisingly, the more affluent ($50k+) and university-educated tend to be the biggest spenders on both print and ebooks. In the past year, how much have you spent on...? Ebooks Print books More than $200 9% 15% $101–$200 11% 14% $51–$100 17% 20% $26–$50 23% 16% $25 or less 25% 22% Nothing 15% 12% Don’t Remember 1% 1% 0% 20% 40% Base: [Figure 2] 1,006 US adult ebook readerswww.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 4
    • Spend is shifting rapidly from print to ebooks. When asked about their buying habits compared to last year, one in three readers (36%) are spending more overall on books of all types (good news for publishers and retailers), with 56% spending more on ebooks and 18% on print books [Figure 3]. Although 36% are buying less print now, just 13% are spending less on books overall, indicating that many readers are shifting the amount they would normally have allocated to print over to digital books. Whether due to low prices, increased title availability, an easy purchasing experience, or other factors, older readers (ages 35+) and the more educated and affluent, particularly women, appear to be switching over their spend more completely to ebooks, making them excellent targets for publishers and booksellers. Compared to last year, this year are you spending more or less on...? More Same Less Unsure Ebooks 56% 34 9 1 Print books 18% 45 36 2 Books of all types 36% 46 13 5 (i.e. print and digital combined) 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Base: 1,006 US adult ebook readers [Figure 3]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 5
    • Still, ebook readers are not necessarily digital devotees. Despite the trend away from print purchasing, if a favorite author was initially only released in hardback, 41% of readers would buy it, whereas 39% would wait for the ebook [Figure 4]. Younger (ages 18-34) and lower income readers show less patience when it comes to new works by their favorite authors. Almost half would buy the hard cover if the ebook version was unavailable, indicating that instant gratification is more important to these groups than other demographics and suggesting that hardback buyers may also be Kindle, iPad, Kobo, Nook etc. users. What would you do if the ebook version of your favorite author’s title was not available at the same time as the hard cover book? Unsure 20% I would buy the hard cover book 41% I would pre-order or wait to buy the ebook 39% Base: 1,006 US adult ebook readers [Figure 4]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 6
    • “Traditional” online booksellers dominate ebook sales. With 70 million unique visitors per month, Amazon is in a league of its own when it comes to ebook sales; 71% of those surveyed bought from the ecommerce powerhouse in the past year [Figure 5]. At 31%, struggling Barnes and Noble is a distant second. Apple iTunes is one of the fastest growing ebook distributors, along with the Google ebookstore and the Apple iBookstore which both launched last year. Males aged 18-34 tend to be the earliest adopters of these newer services, in sharp contrast to those over 55 who purchase almost exclusively from “traditional” booksellers like Amazon. This younger demographic buys from the widest variety of sources, including independent booksellers and directly from publishers like Random House and Harper Collins. Where have you purchased ebooks in the past year? Amazon.com 71% Barnes & Noble 31% Apple iTunes 20% Google ebookstore 20% Apple iBookstore 14% (for iPad) Small or independent book sellers 12% Directly from the publisher 12% (e.g. Random House, Harper Collins) Books-A-Million 10% Kobo Books 7% BooksOnBoard 5% Other 6% Unsure 1% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Base: 848 US adult ebook purchasers [Figure 5]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 7
    • Etailers control ebook title discovery. Readers may purchase more ebooks from Amazon and Barnes & Noble because they typically start their search for new reads there [Figure 6]. The study showed that 47% look for titles on retailer websites, with just 21% beginning the process on internet search engines like Google. Lower income and less educated readers, particularly men, are more likely to begin their hunt using a search engine than other demographics. Titles that can’t be found won’t sell. While Apple, Google, and a wide array of publishers and independent booksellers are all jostling for a slice of ebook revenues, the majority of titles must be available on the country’s largest online bookstore to be discovered by readers. Amazon’s numerous options for customer interaction with a title, such as Look Inside!, reviews, recommendations, and rankings, make it an extremely effective ebook marketer. For those looking to maintain some level of independence from the ecommerce giant, providing unique content like exclusive author interviews or previews of upcoming books can raise search engine rankings, leading to more direct traffic. When searching for ebooks, where do you typically start your search? Retailer website 47% (e.g. Amazon.com) Search engine 21% (e.g. Google) Friends, family and colleagues 6% Blogs and social networks 5% (e.g. Facebook, Twitter etc.) Magazines and newspapers 4% (e.g. book reviews) Bookstore staff 3% Book club 2% Publisher website 2% (e.g. Random House) Other 7% Unsure 3% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Base: 1,006 US adult ebook readers [Figure 6]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 8
    • Most need convincing to buy directly from publishers. Digital book buyers are very price conscious, likely a result of Amazon’s bargain-priced $9.99 ebooks and the recent recession. So when asked what might encourage them to purchase directly from the publisher, it comes as no surprise that the vast majority say lower prices (95%) and promotions (94%), with rewards points coming in third (85%) [Figure 7]. Some of those surveyed commented that they did not even realize that it’s possible to purchase directly from many publishers, indicating a lack of awareness. Still, three quarters of readers cite other factors that could convince them to buy from publishers, such as fewer restrictions on sharing and loaning, a better checkout experience, and a wider choice of payment methods. Tending to be less loyal to “traditional” etailers, younger audiences (ages 18-34) view enhanced content, exclusive offers and products, content bundles, and a large fan base as more of an enticement to purchase from the publisher. How likely would each of the following be in encouraging you to purchase an ebook directly from the publisher? Very likely Not very likely Moderately likely Not at all likely Not sure Lower price than other sellers 72% 23 3 1 Promotion 59% 35 5 1 (e.g. 20% off) Rewards points 47% 38 1 10 4 Fewer restrictions on sharing and printing 38% 39 2 15 5 Easier, faster checkout (e.g. 1-click purchasing) 38% 36 1 19 5 Better choice of payment methods (e.g. PayPal) 39% 35 1 17 7 Enhanced ebook content not available elsewhere (e.g. video interviews) 30% 39 2 20 9 Exclusive preview or sample when you pre-order 30% 38 1 23 8 Bundled with other desirable content (e.g. movie ticket) 31% 37 1 21 10 Offers and products related to the ebook not available elsewhere 25% 40 2 24 9 (e.g. book signing invitation) Large community of fans to discuss the ebook with 15% 27 2 34 22 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Base: 1,006 US adult ebook readers [Figure 7]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 9
    • Readers are open to multiple payment and ownership models. To date, ebook sales have largely been the only method of monetization; however, our research indicates that readers are primed for new business models. A whopping 79% find social shopping à la Groupon to receive discounts at least somewhat appealing, while 71% are interested in all-you-can-read ebook subscriptions and 70% are willing to accept embedded advertising to subsidize costs [Figure 8]. As active digital purchasers, unsurprisingly younger adults (ages 18-34) find diverse buying options more appealing than the average reader, with three in four showing an affinity for free access in exchange for referrals. Ebook rentals also resonate strongest with Gen Y readers who may prefer to borrow for a limited time at a lower cost rather than own outright. And a few recent offerings indicate that the book industry is evolving to follow other content businesses like movies and music to meet consumer expectations. Ads are displayed on the new $114 Kindle, subsidizing the cost of the ereader. A Spanish company called 24symbols.com went into beta in April 2011 with free, ad-supported books and a paid all-you-can-eat ebook subscription plan for multiple publishers. While O’Reilly’s Safari digital library has been available via subscription for years, with authors commonly getting paid based on pages read, the company recently launched individual subscriptions for their frequently updated computer books. How appealing to you are the following payment options for ebooks? Very appealing Not very appealing Somewhat appealing Not at all appealing Unsure Buying each ebook individually 41% 41 1 12 4 Getting a discount if you buy with others (e.g. bulk purchase) 39% 40 2 13 6 Paying a at monthly fee to read unlimited ebooks 35% 36 1 17 10 (e.g. all-you-can-read) Read for free or at a low cost if ads 39% 31 1 17 13 are embedded in the ebook Read for free if you refer enough friends 36% 32 1 19 12 Paying to rent an ebook for a limited time 23% 31 2 25 19 (e.g. one week rental for a holiday) 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Base: 1,006 US adult ebook readers [Figure 8]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 10
    • Fewer restrictions on sharing and more titles could encourage higher consumption. Forty-eight percent of those surveyed indicate that increased title availability would encourage them to read more ebooks, followed by fewer restrictions on loaning or sharing at 36% [Figure 9]. While the number of digital titles is growing (Google claims the largest selection at three million), consumer demand will undoubtedly push publishers to make more ebook versions available, including backlists. And lending is gradually becoming more commonplace; Barnes & Noble has permitted book sharing on its Nook since 2009, and earlier this year Amazon began allowing eligible books be loaned to other Kindle users for two weeks. Later in 2011, customers will be able to check out Kindle books from their local library. One in three also values the ability to read and synch across their preferred combination of devices (31%), an interest that Google hopes to exploit with its cloud-based ebooktore and apps. Members of Gen Y (ages 18-34) show more interest than other demographics in better graphics and rich media. Younger adults also find interactive ebook content, links to related material, and automatic updates appealing. Which of the following would encourage you to read more ebooks? More titles available 48% Fewer restrictions on loaning or sharing books 36% Easier to synch across devices so you can start reading on one device and continue reading on another 31% Ability to read on your preferred combination of devices 31% (e.g. Android phone, iPad and Nook) Better images and graphics 31% Easier to use ereaders 26% Fewer restrictions on copying and printing 24% Automatic content updates 21% More rich media content 20% (e.g. video, sound) More links to related content 17% No need to download les to your preferred reading device(s) 17% Fewer geographical restrictions 15% Ability to interact with or personalize the story 13% Other 15% None of the above 10% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Base: 1,006 US adult ebook readers [Figure 9]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 11
    • Readers highly value the space-saving benefits of ebooks. The number one advantage of digital books over their print counterparts, cited by 70% of readers, is that they take up little space [Figure 10], making them handy for frequent travelers and those with limited living space. Anytime anywhere access (61%), cheaper pricing (55%), and environmental friendliness (50%) are also major benefits. Storage and access are of particular appeal to older (ages 55+), female readers. Members of Gen Y (ages 18-34) value search, multi-device reading, and sharing tools more highly than other demographics. What do you think are the main bene ts, if any, of ebooks over print books? Take up less space than print books 70% Anytime, anywhere access to many books 61% Cheaper than print version 55% More environmentally friendly 50% Can start reading immediately 49% Easier to purchase 45% Can read books on multiple devices 40% (e.g. mobile phone, tablet, ereader, etc.) Easier to search the content and nd information 29% Easier to read 28% Enhanced or interactive features (e.g. video, audio, zoom) 24% Built-in tools for sharing 23% (e.g. notes, highlights, ratings) More up-to-date content 19% Easier to take notes or highlight 18% Other 2% I do not think there are any bene ts of ebooks over print books 2% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Base: 1,006 US adult ebook readers [Figure 10]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 12
    • Print trumps digital when it comes to book lending. Despite the best efforts of ereading platforms and third-party services like Booklending.com, loaning or sharing is seen to be a major advantage of print books over digital ones (54%) followed closely by device-free reading (49%), an easier browsing experience (41%), and the tactile feeling and smell of paper (41%) [Figure 11]. Curiously, younger (ages 18-34), less affluent readers value the aesthetic appearance of physical books more highly than other groups. What do you think are the main bene ts, if any, of print books over ebooks? Easier to loan or share with someone else 54% Can be read without a device by anyone 49% (e.g. less computer-literate person) Tactile feeling and smell of paper 41% Easier to browse before buying 41% More aesthetically pleasing 38% (e.g. look nicer on your shelves) More widely available 35% Easier to take notes or highlight 27% Easier to read 27% Easier to use multiple books at once 27% Easier to search the content 22% and nd information Better graphics and images 21% Easier to print or copy 16% More environmentally friendly 12% Other 4% I do not think there are any bene ts 6% of print books over ebooks 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Base: 1,006 US adult ebook readers [Figure 11]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 13
    • Ebook consumers love sharing good reads. Most readers enjoy letting others know about ebook they have read; four out of five (82%) regularly tell others face-to-face or by phone, while half (52%) do so via email [Figure 12]. The Facebook generation (ages 18-34) are particularly keen to share their influence online. These younger consumers are more than twice as likely as older adults (55+) to post titles of ebooks they’ve read on Facebook, Twitter, or personal blogs and websites (66% vs. 19%), add them to an online book list or app (62% vs. 27%), and rate or review them (64% vs. 27%). However, social sharing has truly hit the mainstream; almost half (47%) of those aged 35-54 regularly tell others about books they’ve read on their social networks. How often do you do the following after reading an ebook? Very often Rarely Sometimes Never Tell someone about it face-to-face or on the phone 37% 45 11 7 Email someone about it 17% 35 26 22 Rate or review it 20% 32 27 21 Tell others about it on Facebook, Twitter, 23% 28 19 31 or your personal blog or website Add it to an online book list or application 24% 26 20 30 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Base: 1,006 US adult ebook readers [Figure 12]www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 14
    • Recommendations With sales expected to triple to $2.8 billion USD (almost half the market) by 2015, according to Forrester Research, ebooks are opening up new opportunities for publishers, booksellers, and device manufacturers while creating pressure to evolve outdated processes and business models. In this brave new world of book publishing, how can companies create and distribute both traditional books and digital products that readers will buy? Below are some recommendations for action based on the results of this research: Adopt flexible technologies and processes to create once, distribute everywhere. With the device landscape in constant flux, and a lack of format and metadata standards, publishers must rethink the way they create and deliver content to gain agility. They must re-engineer their processes, allowing content to be transformed into multiple formats simultaneously and divided into ever-smaller saleable “chunks”, and at a reasonable cost, to feed a growing number of services and screens. Content providers should look to digitally savvy technology partners to aid them in developing strategies that respond to market dynamics and craft enhanced content and mobile applications that meet consumer demands. Adopting streamlined XML-based workflows can help publishers reduce their dependence on bestsellers to take chances on lesser known authors, and turn backlists into ebooks to generate long tail sales. According to a recent report issued by the Association of American Publishers, readers who enjoy a newly-released ebook will frequently buy an author’s full backlist, possibly due to the ease of the digital buying experience or to simply to enjoy the greater portability of the digital format. Leverage content distributors but strive to build closer relationships with consumers. Third party distributors like Amazon, Apple iTunes, and the Google ebookstore are critical distribution channels for trade publishers seeking large audiences of digital consumers. To grow revenues, publishers will need to make their ebooks available across the full range of online ebooks superstores to access customers with Apple, Android, BlackBerry, and other mobile devices. For publishers, augmenting third parties to build direct-to-consumer relationships is challenging but may provide resiliency in a rapidly evolving marketplace. Post-sale, content providers can draw customers to ancillary content through links and references embedded in their ebooks. Another emerging way is by building a brand around an author and then adding related online services and products. Microsoft Press is one company that is experimenting with add-on videos, lab exercises, author seminars, and online courses to extend their technical books. Amazon also just launched a new content destination called The Backstory to foster engagement alongside ecommerce.www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 15
    • The Backstory includes video interviews with authors, guest reviews, authors’ favorite playlists and recipes, and invites customers to post questions for visiting authors via Facebook and the company’s blog that are then incorporated into interviews. Whatever the strategies used to attract prospects, publishers aiming to sell directly to consumers through their own ecommerce stores will need to offer competitive pricing, a frictionless checkout, multiple payment options, and fewer restrictions on loaning or sharing titles to be successful. Act quickly with innovative ownership models and products while seeking a universal ebook format. Ebook sales are strategically important to publishers to create new revenue streams, attract wider audiences, and respond to customer demand. Many traditional publishers like Harlequin have created divisions to publish ebooks exclusively, and sites like Smashwords and Lulu where people can self-publish and sell their own titles are flourishing. But outright sales are not the only method of monetization; our research indicates that readers are ready for new payment models. Savvy booksellers, publishers, and the like should look to the video, gaming and music industries for inspiration in finding new ways to monetize. These markets are more evolved, offering sales, rentals, subscriptions, and ad-supported content of various types. Industry players can leverage their knowledge of customers to innovate with individual ebook subscriptions, monthly or weekly rentals, sponsored links, shorter books, and ancillary content like photos, videos, music, blogs, and games. All-you-can-eat subscriptions, or club models where the consumer receives a free ereader and pays a monthly fee to access books for a fixed term, show potential. While further study is needed to determine buyer interest, the educational, technical, and professional markets show potential for chapter or section sales–or other content chunks like images–either on their own or mixed and matched with material from other authors and publishers. To cultivate the widest possible audience for ebooks, the publishing industry should make interoperability by way of a universal ebook format a major goal, as the digital music world did before it. Closed systems like the Kindle or iPad control the purchasing and reading experience, denying buyers true ownership of their ebooks. Downloading and installing multiple apps to read various types of ebook can be frustrating and time-consuming. Ebook revenues will reach their maximum potential only once every publication works on every ereading device without a proprietary app, no matter where you bought it or choose to store it. Experiment with print and digital cross-sells, up-sells, bundles and release dates. Although we found evidence that ebooks are cannibalizing print sales to some extent, content providers should experiment with print and digital bundles, cross-sells and up-sells for customers who read print books at home (orwww.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 16
    • collect them as souvenirs) and take portable ebooks on the road. Encourage impulse shopping by offering price-sensitive ebook readers an author’s collected works, or a set of similar titles, in a discounted e-bundle right after they’ve finished a book. Implementing flexible ecommerce systems that support personalized offers and dynamic content can raise conversions and build average order values. Considering that 19 of the top 50 books last Christmas had higher ebook sales than print, publishers may find releasing digital versions first, rather than costly hardbacks, helps reduce risk and test consumer appetite. Leading with the ebook version as publisher Corvus did with Gordon Ferris’ third novel, The Hanging Shed, can also speed word-of-mouth, leading to higher print purchases and overall sales across all channels. Explore enhanced ebooks and apps to meet future reader expectations. With 2011 Apple iPad 2 sales anticipated to surpass 30 million units, and multi-functional tablets set to eclipse dedicated ereaders next year, we anticipate readers–particularly younger adults–to gain interest in more immersive ebook experiences. Containing rich media content not feasible in print, enhanced books and apps have appeal for less frequent readers, opening up new markets. “Standard” and enhanced ebook editions, or even multiple enhanced versions, of the same title could become commonplace, with surcharges for extras like audio and video components, interviews, and images. The educational, children’s, and professional markets especially have much to gain from rich media in the form of demonstrations, tutorials etc. With enhanced ebook still in their youth, content providers in those fields should experiment with multi-linear interactive experiences to gain an early mover advantage. Partnering with experienced digital media developers can help publishers maintain focus on what they do best–the creation of unique, quality content and engaging user experiences–improving chances of commercial success. Facilitate title discovery and reader recommendations through social features. Social sharing of ebooks has hit the mainstream and, while not a primary channel for title discovery, is gaining in importance to some readers. By adding social sharing and collaborative tools to content, apps, and ereading devices, industry players can foster peer-to-peer communication and the development of fan clubs and book groups, turning customers into sales channels. Book clubs are prime targets for ebooks because readers can instantly download titles at a fraction of the hardback price, maintain large libraries without using up shelf space, and better meet club deadlines through anytime anywhere access. Take a page from two “social ereading” pioneers: Kobo and Copia. Kobo’s Reading Life app lets readers “check in” with characters and locations inside books, and share books and favorite passages with friends on Facebook. The Copia platform combines the reading and purchasing features of the Kindle app with the social reading functionality of well-established networks like Goodreads that let members make recommendations, compare what they’re reading, keep track of past reads, and form book clubs.www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 17
    • About the Author Amanda Dhalla is an ecommerce consultant with the Elastic Path™ consulting division. A seasoned ecommerce professional with more than 14 years in the field, Amanda has hands-on experience marketing, merchandising, and managing multimillion dollar online stores. Her areas of specialization range from market research, conversion optimization, and analytics to traffic generation tactics such as social media, search engine optimization, and content marketing. About Elastic Path Elastic Path provides the industry’s most flexible enterprise ecommerce platform and strategic ecommerce consulting. We help innovative enterprises sell more digital goods and services in a way that is frictionless, social, and everywhere. Major global brands such as Symantec, Time Inc, and Virgin Media rely on Elastic Path to innovate and grow. Web www.elasticpath.com | Blog www.getelastic.com | Twitter www.twitter.com/elasticpath Contact Us To find out how Elastic Path’s market research and ecommerce consulting services can help you succeed, please email consulting@elasticpath.com or call 1.800.942.5282 (toll-free within North America) or +1.604.408.8078 (outside North America). Methodology From April 14 to 18, 2011 Elastic Path Software hired Vision Critical, an interactive research solutions company, to conduct an online survey among a sample of 1,006 US adults over the age of 18 who had read at least one ebook (i.e. book in digital format) in the past month. The full dataset has been statistically weighted to ensure a representative sample. The margin of error is ±3.1%, 19 times out of 20. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding. © Copyright 2011, Elastic Path Software Inc. All rights reserved. Elastic Path™ and the Elastic Path logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Elastic Path Software Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.www.elasticpath.com Brave New Publishing World: Assessing the Impact of Ebooks on Consumers 18