Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Book Buying Habits

Would it help writers to know the book buying habits of readers? Maybe. If you think it might, you can go see (it’s a slideshow) the stats and info posted by Verso Advertising.

Here are just a few of the things they noted:
30.2% of avid readers purchased 10 or more books within the previous 12 months
Avid book buyers skew older … and female.

Total estimated U.S. avid book buyers – 70 million

The #1 principal way of discovering new books? – Personal recommendations 48.2%

You’ll even find a slide that breaks down the genres and gives stats on which genre is bought most for an eReader.

There are 41 slides, so you’ll probably find something interesting or revealing. Let us know in the Comment section if something catches your eye or surprises you.


  1. I was surprised that advertising was third in the way people discover new books. How often do you see a book advertised? Maybe it is different in the US, but I very seldom ever see any sort of book ads. I wonder what is considered advertising here? At first I though review, but that has a category of its own.

  2. I also wondered if the buying habits were generational or chronological. Lots of information there!
    Couldn't they have made a nice, little arrow button to click instead of making me try to hit the numbers with my mouse? Sheesh!

  3. Its interesting that there is such research because that would mean on some level that writers do care about the readers opinion. Ok this is not the right place perhaps to write this thought but its just that there's a guest post on my blog about how to write a great reviews and one of the comments eluded that once a best sellers are published they have no interest in what a few readers think of their books. I suppose its true but then would there be research focused on what we by and why?

  4. Laurita, I haven't seen a lot of advertising, but I have seen ads in magazines or newspapers for some of the big name author books.

    I'm with you, Laura, on having to click those teeny buttons at the bottom.

    Wendy, it makes me wonder - if publishers/authors don't care what a few readers think of the books, then why to they send out review copies? To get reviews - and, thus, they do care.

  5. I'm a male book buyer, doing my best to remove the skew towards female. Can't do much about the age skew. Sorry about that >:)

    Cold As Heaven

  6. I remember taking part of a pol that asked questions about my buying habits for books. Interesting survey.

    I need to pop over and have a look.


  7. Just went through the presentation. Really interesting. Thanks for posting the link. I have to say I was happy to see that the resistance to e-books is growing. Maybe it's a sign of my age--and I do own a Kindle--but I will always prefer holding a book in my hands.

  8. Very timely ... this is the kind of stuff Irv Nesbaum is urging me to do.

  9. Thanks, Helen, that was very interesting.


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