U.S. publishers earned $27 billion in net revenue in 2013

BookStats 2013

Image credit: BookStats

The Association of American Publishers and the Book Industry Study Group recently released their 2013 update to BookStats, an annual survey covering trends and sales in book publishing. New for 2013: In the Trade category, adult non-fiction grew faster than juvenile (includes children’s and young adult), the category that had been the leader for the previous 2 years. (The Trade category includes “general consumer fiction and non-fiction.”)

Ebooks hit a record number in terms of volume sold, but revenue from ebooks was flat. Trade paperbacks were still the #1 format. E-audiobooks also had a strong year in 2013, hitting all-time peaks in sales and volume.

In sales, the book publishing industry’s revenue from online retail (of both ebooks and print) surpassed that of physical stores. While Trade revenue for 2012 was so strong—thanks to The Hunger Games and 50 Shades of Grey—that experts anticipated a large drop for 2013, the reality was that revenue did drop slightly in 2013 but overall numbers seem to mirror pacing set in previous years. Pulling together revenue data from all sectors—including K-12, Professional/Scholarly, Higher Education, and Trade—overall industry revenue was flat compared to 2012.

The full report is available for purchase, but you can also check out the press release and news brief to read more about how 2013 shaped up for U.S. book publishers.

Note: This post is part of our series, “The Weekly Number.” In this series, we highlight statistics that help tell the story of the 21st-century library.


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