This survey news, reported by Shelf Awareness, surprised me. Here's the text.
At the ABA's Winter Institute…Jack McKeown, director of new business development for Verso Digital and a bookstore owner, will update his presentation last year of reader attitudes. Once again, many of his results will cheer independent booksellers. The most recent survey of 3,819 adults, which took place during the first two weeks of December, followed up on trends identified in the first three surveys, particularly book-buying behavior of e-reader owners and e-book buyers. Among the findings:
The percentage of e-reader owners who describe themselves as avid readers—intending to buy 13 or more e-books in the next year—is 26.8%, roughly the same as avid readers among all readers, regardless of what form of book they read. This indicates that e-reader owners are no longer mainly early adopters: they now mirror the overall book-buying population.
E-reader owners are buying nearly as many print books as e-books: 25.8% of e-reader owners said that they would buy 13 or more print books within the coming year. Moreover, on average, all e-reader owners plan to buy identical amounts of print and e-books: 7.2.
McKeown commented that "there is no overt evidence of e-books cannibalizing print books among avid readers" and suggested that a hybrid market of print and e-books is emerging and will persist for years.
Some 81.7% of all e-reader owners said that if e-books are priced competitively, they will buy them from indies. "If any bookstores are on the sidelines about developing a robust e-book solution for their stores," McKeown said, "this statistic should serve as a huge wake-up call."
The survey found e-reader ownership had risen to 7.9% from 6.8% at the time of its survey done for BEA last May. Likely it's risen more since then because of holiday gift giving.
Here's the link to the Shelf Awareness issue:
I suspect that what people say they'll do and what they actually do may be two different things. I certainly have stopped buying print books since owning my Kindle. I read them from the library and read print books that are given to me, but I rarely buy them.
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