It’s no secret our world is becoming increasingly digital. Everything from banking to dating has moved online, and people are rarely surprised when a new service appears in this realm. But there is at least one item that might not be so easily turned digital: print books. When ebooks and e-readers hit the market nearly a decade ago, it seemed like print books would become a thing of the past. After all, ebook devices are lighter and can store multiple books, but this doesn’t mean that they’re better.
The Decline of Ebooks
When ebooks first made an appearance, many experts predicted that they would essentially replace traditional print books. For a while it looked like that they were right, but recent book sales are telling a different story.
Ebook sales began to decline in 2016, while print book sales were on the rise in The UK and North America. This is a trend that has continued over the past couple of years.
The Return of Print Books
It looks like the best way to read involves old-fashioned print books, books that you can really feel. Reading a physical, printed book is a very different experience from an ereader device. Each book has a distinct material, scent and cover, as if it embodies a personality of its own. Readers can also see how far they’ve read and where they’re at as they turn each page.
As well, children’s book sales have been on the rise because cuddling up with an e-reader at bedtime does not have the same appeal. Ebook devices like tablets, computers, and laptops also easily distract readers with their other features. These frequent interruptions make it more difficult to focus on the story itself. Another common complaint is that these devices tires readers’ eyes far quicker because of the light emitted from the screen.
In fact, Sony discontinued it’s ereaders and Waterstones stopped carrying Kindles outside of the UK due to its lack of success.
It seems as though much of the decline in ebook sales comes down to a preference in favour of print.
Online Book Sales Are On the Rise
While print book sales are on the rise, how customers are buying these books has changed. There has been a lot of chatter about the resurgence of independent bookstores. What was once a dying area of work has seen a small renaissance with plenty of support from their communities. This indicates that customers are moving away from the traditional big-box bookstores.
The most common way readers are purchasing their books now though is online. Digital sales make up over half of all sales of print books with retailers like Amazon becoming the first stop for many avid readers. Amazon has become so successful in this regard that its opening two bookstore locations in the USA. Amazon is adapting its approach to better suit the current retail climate.
Unlike traditional bookstores of the past, Amazon is using these locations to aid its online sales. Customers will not be pressured to buy the book in store and are encouraged to read as much as they like at the storefront, in which they are directed to the online store if they prefer to wait.
How to Buy Books in 2018
Buying books online is the future of book sales. Amazon often comes to mind, but there are a number of different book buying websites to explore. For instance, Bookoutlet.com offers the best deals for any book that you can think of. Make sure to check websites like this out before making your purchase.
Print Books Are Here To Stay
Reading print books is a pastime that still offers numerous benefits in today’s digital age. Physical, print books are infinitely more satisfying to read than their electronic counterparts and are much more pleasing to look at on a shelf. Although our shopping habits have changed, traditional print books are here to stay.
Photos courtesy of the author
Guest Author Bio
Steffen is a bilingual (German/English) content writer who likes to speak his mind. He enjoys sharing his thoughts—and there are many—online through blogging and social media. To inspire readers to share their own opinions is one of his ambitions.