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Lily Dwyer: Hello and welcome to Tech Forum Online. My name is Lily Dwyer. I'm the
Product Manager for SalesData and LibraryData here at BookNet Canada. And today I'm
going to be talking about what's new in SalesData and LibraryData.
Before we get started, BookNet Canada acknowledges that its operations are remote and our
colleagues contribute their work from the traditional territories of the Mississaugas of the
Credit, the Anishinaabe, the Haudenosaunee, the Wyandot, the Mi'kmaq, the Ojibwa of Fort
William First Nation, the Three Fires Confederacy of First Nations, which includes the
Ojibwa, the Odawa, and the Potawatomie, and the Métis, the original nations and peoples of
the lands we now call Beaton, Brampton, Guelph, Halifax, Thunder Bay, Toronto, Vaughan,
and Windsor. We encourage you to visit the nativeland.ca website to learn more about the
peoples whose land you are joining from today. Moreover, BookNet endorses the calls to
action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada and supports an ongoing
shift from gatekeeping to space making in the book industry.
The book industry has long been an industry of gatekeeping. Anyone who works at any stage
of the book supply chain carries a responsibility to serve readers by publishing, promoting,
and supplying works that represent the wide extent of human experiences and identities and
all that complicated intersectionality. We at BookNet are committed to working with our
partners in the industry as we move towards a framework that supports space-making, which
ensures that marginalised creators and professionals all have the opportunity to contribute,
work, and lead. In spirit of that acknowledgement, I confirm BookNet's and my own
responsibility to mend the sacred hoop with Canada's Indigenous peoples, to be an ally to all
Black, Indigenous, and people of colour, and to unite and work alongside one another.
SalesData and LibraryData are reporting tools that allow retailers, publishers, libraries, and
other members of the book industry to access sales, inventory, and circulation data from
retailers and libraries across Canada. For more information, you can find us at
booknetcanada.ca. So for those of you who are already familiar with SalesData and
LibraryData and are heavy users of our products, welcome back. We'll be going through an
update on what the past year has held for SalesData and LibraryData and what we're
planning for the future.
So on the day I'm recording this, we're not quite at the end of the 2024 fiscal year, but so far
users have run 265,221 reports on the SalesData and LibraryData platform. That's over 1,020
reports per business day so far this year. And on a weekly basis, users received 1,284
scheduled reports by using the platform’s report automation feature. So that saves users
collectively about 42 hours each week. And that adds up to about 2,225 hours each year, or
about 63 weeks of full-time work saved for the industry through automated reporting. Or, if
you're looking to measure that time in a different unit of measure, that's enough time to listen
to every single Sarah J. Maas audiobook at least six times. Or, if you're not taking on a new
book series, at least you'll have that time back to keep engaging in the business of selling,
publishing, circulating, or connecting readers to books.
So where is all the data powering these reports coming from? Well, we added over 30 new
reporting retailers this year from coast to coast, bringing our total up to 269. I should also
mention that we've had some really great presenters over the last little while here at Tech
Forum from retailers, including our recent panel on booksellers adapting, engaging, and
thriving in the book industry. So make sure you check that out on our YouTube channel and
our blog.
To support reporting from our retailer partners, we have integrations built for nine different
point-of-sale systems, and our data processing supports many others not listed here. So we
currently support BookManager, Lightspeed, Nebraska, Ratex, Shopify, Square, Vigie 3000,
Wordstock, and this year we're very pleased to announce that we're also now supporting
WooCommerce. Also at the same time, we're also currently working on a new POS reporting
tool to support Givex. So if your store is supporting WooCommerce or Givex and you're not
currently reporting into SalesData, please reach out to us to get started. And if your store is
not using these POS systems, don't worry, we would still be happy to discuss reporting
options with you. You can drop us a line at salesdata@booknetcanada.ca to get started.
Our library data on the other hand comes from 80 libraries with over 700 branches across the
country. So here are some of them and we're adding more as time goes on. We're really
excited to have so many amazing libraries working with us. We have integrations built for
six ILS systems with two more on the way. So we currently integrate well with Evergreen,
Horizon, Infor VSmart, Koha, Polaris, and Symphony.
Aside from that, we're also working on reporting with Insignia, and we have a new
integration in beta with Sierra. So on that note, if you use Sierra version 5.5 or higher, and if
you've been waiting to participate in LibraryData for the Sierra upgrade, please get in touch
with us at librarydata@booknetcanada.ca and we'll work with you to get started on reporting
into LibraryData. And also if your library is not using one of these ILSs, you can reach out to
us anyway. We really look forward to working with you and your ILS to get your data on
board.
Libraries contributing to LibraryData also have their staff counted towards our Loan Stars
program, which relies on data provided by libraries across Canada to inform a data-driven
list of the top books ordered by Canadian libraries. So for more information on that, please
check out my colleague Kalpana's presentation on Loan Stars. The Loan Stars list are really
kind of a fun place to kind of find out what library staff from coast to coast are ordering for
their library collections.
The team here has also done a ton of research using data provided by our retailer partners. So
here are some of the interesting trends that we've seen in SalesData over the last year. So I
wanted to start by talking about Comics & Graphic Novels. So something that we've noticed
in the past is that Comics & Graphic Novels have been steadily increasing in popularity, as
was the case in both 2021 and 2022. But 2023, however, proved to be the first year that we
can see a significant decline in the subject, with a decrease of about 17% across adult,
Juvenile, and Young Adult Comics & Graphic Novels.
Romance, however, was a category in which we saw continued growth this year. So this
year, this genre has further increased by about 9%, surpassing over three million units sold.
It's been fun for our team to note the shifts that are taking place within that category. So for
instance, Contemporary Romance was still one of the highest performing subcategories of
Romance in 2023, with Colleen Hoover, Hannah Grace, Carly Fortune, and Lucy Scorre
dominating the romance charts. And we saw that there was the slightest shift however in this
category between 2022 and 2023, where Contemporary Romance actually went down by 5%.
As another example, Regency Romance was a Romance subcategory that we saw trending in
past years due to the popularity of the Bridgerton Netflix series. In 2023, however, we saw
that this genre has been going down by about 35%. So while subjects like these have gone
down, on the flip side we've seen huge increases in the subcategory of Fantasy, which
increased by 235% between 2022 and 2023.
Speaking of fantasy and romance, perhaps one of the biggest trends that we've noticed over
the past year is the booming popularity of romantasy. So if you haven't heard of this genre,
"The Guardian" describes romantasy as a portmanteau of romance and fantasy applied to
novels that blend elements of both genres. So these novels are typically set in fantastical
worlds with fairies, dragons, magic, but also feature classic romance plotlines like enemies,
lovers, soulmates and love triangles.
As a defined genre, it's been around since as early as 2008, but within the last year, it's really
taken off with authors like Sarah J. Maas and Rebecca Yaros. And much of this boom is due
to its popularity on social media platforms like TikTok. And there are also theories that
readers are responding to the elements of escapism that romantasy offers. And although there
is no specific romantasy BISAC code, there are three BISAC codes that we can refer to when
looking at romantasy in SalesData.
So those are Romance as a subcategory within the Fiction Fantasy heading, Fantasy as a
subcategory within the Fiction Romance heading, as well as Romance within the Young
Adult Fantasy heading. And as you can see here, there was significant growth across all three
of those subjects in 2023.
We also noticed some interesting developments in the world of Non-Fiction. So cookbooks
about alcoholic beverages, for instance, went down by 12% in the last year, while cookbooks
about non-alcoholic beverages increased by 40%. So this seems to mirror things we're seeing
outside of the book industry, such as the steep rise in the price of alcohol at the end of 2022,
as well as the new guidelines for low-risk alcohol use issued by the Canadian Centre on
Substance Use and Addiction at the beginning of 2023.
And finally, I'll highlight one more trend that our team has noticed in book sales. So, Stats
Canada recently revealed that millennials, so those are people currently aged 28 to 43, now
outnumber boomers, so those aged 60 to 78 in Canada. According to BookNet's Canadian
Book Consumer Survey, we know that book buyers aged 35 to 44, so older millennials and
younger gen xers, bought the most print books in 2022. So this is interesting because this
means that there are a lot of perimenopausal book buyers out there, and we're seeing
significant increase in subjects like Menopause, which increased by 32%, and Aging, which
increased by 70%. And Women's Health books increased by a whopping 185%. So we can
see that bookselling data is clearly reflecting demographic shifts within Canada.
If you're interested in learning more about subject level insights like this, you might want to
check out our recent emerging trends webinar. So you can find that on BookNet's YouTube
channel. Okay, so now that we've talked about trends, let's talk about what was new for
SalesData and LibraryData as features in 2023.
So the first feature we're going to talk about is our brand new top 500 subjects toggle. And
this is a toggle that can be found on our Market Share and Market Comp reports in
SalesData, as well as our Trend Analysis report in LibraryData. So this is a really neat
feature to have because instead of having to input specifically what individual subjects you're
interested in comparing, this will allow you to pull a fuller list of the top performing subjects
in bookstores and libraries. So it's a great place to start if you're not really sure what subjects
are doing well and you want an overall view of growth increases in subjects over the past
few years.
The next feature I'm going to talk about is our inclusion of additional filters on the Market
Share and Market Comp reports in SalesData. So this will allow you to compare things over
time with additional filters. So previously, for example, you could look at a publisher over
time, but you couldn't filter that by a specific subject or format. So you can do that now in
SalesData, and we've added these types of filters across all the different versions of the
Market Share and Market Comp reports we offer. So this feature is really great because it
gives users the ability to narrow down their reports further than ever before.
We also added ISBN counts to the Market Share and Market Comp reports. So something we
kind of get asked quite often is whether sales growth is due to a growing number of ISBNs
being published in a certain category, or if a single title has exploded in popularity and is
therefore uplifting an entire genre. So since we added ISBN counts to these reports, users
now have greater context for subject format and publisher level reporting.
The last thing I'm going to mention here is that we've seen a ton of improvements in the
overall speed and performance of the SalesData and LibraryData website due to some
hardware improvements. So a lot of these changes affect our own internal workflow
processes, such as our ability to process data at a faster pace. However, you may have also
noticed that certain reports can now run through the website at much faster speed. For
example, lifetime reports that took up to a minute or longer to pull in SalesData now run
within a few seconds or even instantly. So we've been very happy to hear back from some of
our users who have seen that their own reports are running at much more rapid rates.
So finally, I'm going to give you kind of a brief sneak peek into what's next on the roadmap
for SalesData and LibraryData. And that's age range data. So this has been something that's
been of interest, especially to those who publish a lot in the children's subject areas. And
we'll be adding new display options across all our title level reports where users can add
columns for lower age, upper age, as well as audience data. And then further along down the
roadmap, we aim to also update our search functionality to include those data points as
search criteria and filtering as well. So at this point, we're very close to releasing this to the
main site, I'm excited to say. So look for those new column display options in the coming
weeks.
Of course, we always have lots of interesting ideas in the can, and most of those ideas for
how we can improve SalesData and LibraryData come from you, our users. So please do let
us know what would make your life easier and what sort of data you really wish you had
your hands on, and we will do our best to help you. Like all BookNet products, our future
development is driven by stakeholder feedback, so please get in touch. We'd love to hear
from you and how we can make your work in 2024 and beyond easier and more data-driven.
If you have feedback or questions, please email us at data@booknetcanada.ca. You can also
find us online at booknetcanada.ca as well as Facebook. We really would love to hear from
you and hear your ideas for how we can continue improving these tools for the future. So
thanks so much for watching and have a great day.

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Transcript: New from BookNet Canada for 2024: BNC SalesData and LibraryData - Tech Forum 2024

  • 1. Lily Dwyer: Hello and welcome to Tech Forum Online. My name is Lily Dwyer. I'm the Product Manager for SalesData and LibraryData here at BookNet Canada. And today I'm going to be talking about what's new in SalesData and LibraryData. Before we get started, BookNet Canada acknowledges that its operations are remote and our colleagues contribute their work from the traditional territories of the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishinaabe, the Haudenosaunee, the Wyandot, the Mi'kmaq, the Ojibwa of Fort William First Nation, the Three Fires Confederacy of First Nations, which includes the Ojibwa, the Odawa, and the Potawatomie, and the Métis, the original nations and peoples of the lands we now call Beaton, Brampton, Guelph, Halifax, Thunder Bay, Toronto, Vaughan, and Windsor. We encourage you to visit the nativeland.ca website to learn more about the peoples whose land you are joining from today. Moreover, BookNet endorses the calls to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada and supports an ongoing shift from gatekeeping to space making in the book industry. The book industry has long been an industry of gatekeeping. Anyone who works at any stage of the book supply chain carries a responsibility to serve readers by publishing, promoting, and supplying works that represent the wide extent of human experiences and identities and all that complicated intersectionality. We at BookNet are committed to working with our partners in the industry as we move towards a framework that supports space-making, which ensures that marginalised creators and professionals all have the opportunity to contribute, work, and lead. In spirit of that acknowledgement, I confirm BookNet's and my own responsibility to mend the sacred hoop with Canada's Indigenous peoples, to be an ally to all Black, Indigenous, and people of colour, and to unite and work alongside one another. SalesData and LibraryData are reporting tools that allow retailers, publishers, libraries, and other members of the book industry to access sales, inventory, and circulation data from retailers and libraries across Canada. For more information, you can find us at booknetcanada.ca. So for those of you who are already familiar with SalesData and LibraryData and are heavy users of our products, welcome back. We'll be going through an update on what the past year has held for SalesData and LibraryData and what we're planning for the future. So on the day I'm recording this, we're not quite at the end of the 2024 fiscal year, but so far users have run 265,221 reports on the SalesData and LibraryData platform. That's over 1,020 reports per business day so far this year. And on a weekly basis, users received 1,284 scheduled reports by using the platform’s report automation feature. So that saves users collectively about 42 hours each week. And that adds up to about 2,225 hours each year, or about 63 weeks of full-time work saved for the industry through automated reporting. Or, if you're looking to measure that time in a different unit of measure, that's enough time to listen to every single Sarah J. Maas audiobook at least six times. Or, if you're not taking on a new book series, at least you'll have that time back to keep engaging in the business of selling, publishing, circulating, or connecting readers to books. So where is all the data powering these reports coming from? Well, we added over 30 new reporting retailers this year from coast to coast, bringing our total up to 269. I should also
  • 2. mention that we've had some really great presenters over the last little while here at Tech Forum from retailers, including our recent panel on booksellers adapting, engaging, and thriving in the book industry. So make sure you check that out on our YouTube channel and our blog. To support reporting from our retailer partners, we have integrations built for nine different point-of-sale systems, and our data processing supports many others not listed here. So we currently support BookManager, Lightspeed, Nebraska, Ratex, Shopify, Square, Vigie 3000, Wordstock, and this year we're very pleased to announce that we're also now supporting WooCommerce. Also at the same time, we're also currently working on a new POS reporting tool to support Givex. So if your store is supporting WooCommerce or Givex and you're not currently reporting into SalesData, please reach out to us to get started. And if your store is not using these POS systems, don't worry, we would still be happy to discuss reporting options with you. You can drop us a line at salesdata@booknetcanada.ca to get started. Our library data on the other hand comes from 80 libraries with over 700 branches across the country. So here are some of them and we're adding more as time goes on. We're really excited to have so many amazing libraries working with us. We have integrations built for six ILS systems with two more on the way. So we currently integrate well with Evergreen, Horizon, Infor VSmart, Koha, Polaris, and Symphony. Aside from that, we're also working on reporting with Insignia, and we have a new integration in beta with Sierra. So on that note, if you use Sierra version 5.5 or higher, and if you've been waiting to participate in LibraryData for the Sierra upgrade, please get in touch with us at librarydata@booknetcanada.ca and we'll work with you to get started on reporting into LibraryData. And also if your library is not using one of these ILSs, you can reach out to us anyway. We really look forward to working with you and your ILS to get your data on board. Libraries contributing to LibraryData also have their staff counted towards our Loan Stars program, which relies on data provided by libraries across Canada to inform a data-driven list of the top books ordered by Canadian libraries. So for more information on that, please check out my colleague Kalpana's presentation on Loan Stars. The Loan Stars list are really kind of a fun place to kind of find out what library staff from coast to coast are ordering for their library collections. The team here has also done a ton of research using data provided by our retailer partners. So here are some of the interesting trends that we've seen in SalesData over the last year. So I wanted to start by talking about Comics & Graphic Novels. So something that we've noticed in the past is that Comics & Graphic Novels have been steadily increasing in popularity, as was the case in both 2021 and 2022. But 2023, however, proved to be the first year that we can see a significant decline in the subject, with a decrease of about 17% across adult, Juvenile, and Young Adult Comics & Graphic Novels. Romance, however, was a category in which we saw continued growth this year. So this year, this genre has further increased by about 9%, surpassing over three million units sold. It's been fun for our team to note the shifts that are taking place within that category. So for
  • 3. instance, Contemporary Romance was still one of the highest performing subcategories of Romance in 2023, with Colleen Hoover, Hannah Grace, Carly Fortune, and Lucy Scorre dominating the romance charts. And we saw that there was the slightest shift however in this category between 2022 and 2023, where Contemporary Romance actually went down by 5%. As another example, Regency Romance was a Romance subcategory that we saw trending in past years due to the popularity of the Bridgerton Netflix series. In 2023, however, we saw that this genre has been going down by about 35%. So while subjects like these have gone down, on the flip side we've seen huge increases in the subcategory of Fantasy, which increased by 235% between 2022 and 2023. Speaking of fantasy and romance, perhaps one of the biggest trends that we've noticed over the past year is the booming popularity of romantasy. So if you haven't heard of this genre, "The Guardian" describes romantasy as a portmanteau of romance and fantasy applied to novels that blend elements of both genres. So these novels are typically set in fantastical worlds with fairies, dragons, magic, but also feature classic romance plotlines like enemies, lovers, soulmates and love triangles. As a defined genre, it's been around since as early as 2008, but within the last year, it's really taken off with authors like Sarah J. Maas and Rebecca Yaros. And much of this boom is due to its popularity on social media platforms like TikTok. And there are also theories that readers are responding to the elements of escapism that romantasy offers. And although there is no specific romantasy BISAC code, there are three BISAC codes that we can refer to when looking at romantasy in SalesData. So those are Romance as a subcategory within the Fiction Fantasy heading, Fantasy as a subcategory within the Fiction Romance heading, as well as Romance within the Young Adult Fantasy heading. And as you can see here, there was significant growth across all three of those subjects in 2023. We also noticed some interesting developments in the world of Non-Fiction. So cookbooks about alcoholic beverages, for instance, went down by 12% in the last year, while cookbooks about non-alcoholic beverages increased by 40%. So this seems to mirror things we're seeing outside of the book industry, such as the steep rise in the price of alcohol at the end of 2022, as well as the new guidelines for low-risk alcohol use issued by the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction at the beginning of 2023. And finally, I'll highlight one more trend that our team has noticed in book sales. So, Stats Canada recently revealed that millennials, so those are people currently aged 28 to 43, now outnumber boomers, so those aged 60 to 78 in Canada. According to BookNet's Canadian Book Consumer Survey, we know that book buyers aged 35 to 44, so older millennials and younger gen xers, bought the most print books in 2022. So this is interesting because this means that there are a lot of perimenopausal book buyers out there, and we're seeing significant increase in subjects like Menopause, which increased by 32%, and Aging, which increased by 70%. And Women's Health books increased by a whopping 185%. So we can see that bookselling data is clearly reflecting demographic shifts within Canada.
  • 4. If you're interested in learning more about subject level insights like this, you might want to check out our recent emerging trends webinar. So you can find that on BookNet's YouTube channel. Okay, so now that we've talked about trends, let's talk about what was new for SalesData and LibraryData as features in 2023. So the first feature we're going to talk about is our brand new top 500 subjects toggle. And this is a toggle that can be found on our Market Share and Market Comp reports in SalesData, as well as our Trend Analysis report in LibraryData. So this is a really neat feature to have because instead of having to input specifically what individual subjects you're interested in comparing, this will allow you to pull a fuller list of the top performing subjects in bookstores and libraries. So it's a great place to start if you're not really sure what subjects are doing well and you want an overall view of growth increases in subjects over the past few years. The next feature I'm going to talk about is our inclusion of additional filters on the Market Share and Market Comp reports in SalesData. So this will allow you to compare things over time with additional filters. So previously, for example, you could look at a publisher over time, but you couldn't filter that by a specific subject or format. So you can do that now in SalesData, and we've added these types of filters across all the different versions of the Market Share and Market Comp reports we offer. So this feature is really great because it gives users the ability to narrow down their reports further than ever before. We also added ISBN counts to the Market Share and Market Comp reports. So something we kind of get asked quite often is whether sales growth is due to a growing number of ISBNs being published in a certain category, or if a single title has exploded in popularity and is therefore uplifting an entire genre. So since we added ISBN counts to these reports, users now have greater context for subject format and publisher level reporting. The last thing I'm going to mention here is that we've seen a ton of improvements in the overall speed and performance of the SalesData and LibraryData website due to some hardware improvements. So a lot of these changes affect our own internal workflow processes, such as our ability to process data at a faster pace. However, you may have also noticed that certain reports can now run through the website at much faster speed. For example, lifetime reports that took up to a minute or longer to pull in SalesData now run within a few seconds or even instantly. So we've been very happy to hear back from some of our users who have seen that their own reports are running at much more rapid rates. So finally, I'm going to give you kind of a brief sneak peek into what's next on the roadmap for SalesData and LibraryData. And that's age range data. So this has been something that's been of interest, especially to those who publish a lot in the children's subject areas. And we'll be adding new display options across all our title level reports where users can add columns for lower age, upper age, as well as audience data. And then further along down the roadmap, we aim to also update our search functionality to include those data points as search criteria and filtering as well. So at this point, we're very close to releasing this to the main site, I'm excited to say. So look for those new column display options in the coming weeks.
  • 5. Of course, we always have lots of interesting ideas in the can, and most of those ideas for how we can improve SalesData and LibraryData come from you, our users. So please do let us know what would make your life easier and what sort of data you really wish you had your hands on, and we will do our best to help you. Like all BookNet products, our future development is driven by stakeholder feedback, so please get in touch. We'd love to hear from you and how we can make your work in 2024 and beyond easier and more data-driven. If you have feedback or questions, please email us at data@booknetcanada.ca. You can also find us online at booknetcanada.ca as well as Facebook. We really would love to hear from you and hear your ideas for how we can continue improving these tools for the future. So thanks so much for watching and have a great day.