Books app means easy access for your customers. Early reviews are good.
CONS: Not as many of these in the wild yet, and few being used as
e-readers. Expect a lot of growth in the # of these devices in 2011.
Pricing of ebooks by publishers has become a major issue arising in two approaches. The Wholesale Model is the traditional approach where the publisher sells to distributors and booksellers at a discounted wholesale price, who in turn resell it. Instead, some publishers are using the Agency Model, where the publisher sells directly to the public and gives an agent commission to the booksellers enabling the sale. Here is how these two models split out last year:
Non Agency Discounted= 15%
Non Agency Full Price= 30%
The top ten bestselling ebook titles last year were:
- Freedom (MacMillan)
- Autobiography of Mark Twain (University of California Press)
- Cleopatra (Hatchette)
- Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk (Hachette)
- Unbroken (Random)
- The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (Random)
- Moonlight Mile (HarperCollins)
- Object of Beauty (Hachette)
- Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter (HarperCollins)
- Room (Hachette)
Competition is driving some interesting steps forward for ebook selling. Now giant Amazon is being directly challenged by giant Google with their 3,00,000 ebook titles. These will be sold by independent booksellers who use the American Booksellers Association IndieBound.com web hosting system. Ingram is being challenged by their major rival, Baker and Taylor Distributors, who will be selling ebooks within the next two months.
Up till now, small presses and self-publishers have had a fairly clear playing field because their non-traditional capabilities to react to developing technologies quickly. Now the big boys have waded in and are trying to recapture market control. Still, the big guys are still flailing. As a proponent of long-tail marketing, I think the little guys still have the advantage in supporting niche markets. The secrets of future small press successes will be to: keep on top of developing technologies and continue to take advantage of your quick reaction time to industry changes. Indie booksellers have a much more difficult challenge to keep providing beloved print books while figuring out how to sell ebook downloads against Amazon et al.