AddMe - Search Engine Optimization Book Printing Forum: April 2006

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Rewriting the Book

Sony demonstrated the new Sony Reader at the LA Times Festival of Books today. This stylish, 9-ounce e-book reader has an amazing 6” SVGA 800 x 600 display. The display is the “electronic paper” display from e-paper. The display is so sharp, it makes reading on the Sony Reader very similar to reading paper pages. With the touch of one button, the print size is adjusted to the reader’s comfort level. The entire Reader is 5 inches by 7 inches and half an inch thin; making it smaller than some paperbacks.

The Sony Reader can store 80 electronic books. An optional Memory Stick or SD Memory Card provides room for hundreds more books. The Reader has a rechargeable lithium-ion battery that last for up to 7,500 page turns on a single charge.

Sony’s Reader will read e-books in the Sony proprietary format which can be downloaded from CONNECT Reader PC software. It also reads JPEG, PNG, BMP and GIF images, Adobe PDF documents, BbeB Book, RTF and other text file formats. It also functions as an audio player for MP3 or AAC formats.

The cost of the new Reader will retail at $299 or $399 depending on the memory configuration. Sony Readers will be sold by Sony and in many Borders bookstores throughout the country beginning in the summer of 2006.

I read on the Sony Reader using beta software. The text was sharp. I read in sunlight, something I’ve never done before with an e-book reader. The beta software didn’t read some illustrations. This glitch will be fixed before Readers reach the stores. Overall, the performance of the Reader was remarkable. It will be interesting to learn if book lovers will pay the price for the new device.

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Friday, April 14, 2006

Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid

There is a fortune at the bottom of the publishing pyramid. Most book printers work with publishers in the hope of printing a book that sells 5,000 copies, or more. Those titles are a small fraction of the titles published each year. There is greater opportunity for book printers with books that sell fewer copies because there are more of them.

Fewer sales of more titles has been the trend for many years. Statistics from BookScan for 2004 validate that trend. Over one million titles sold 5,000 copies or less.

Who prints those books? And how many copies were printed on the first print run? Clearly there is an opportunity for a book printer willing to identify and market to the publishers producing books that sell fewer than 5,000 copies.


SALES PER TITLE: Of the 1.24 Million ISBN titles in print
10 titles sold. . . . . 1 million or more copies
22 titles sold . . . . 500,000 - 999,999 copies
324 titles sold . . . . 100,000 - 499,999 copies
767 titles sold . . . . .50,000 - 99,999 copies
23,000 titles sold . . .5,000 - 49,999 copies
67,000 titles sold . . .1,000 - 4,999 copies
202,300 titles sold . . 100 - 999 copies
948,000 titles sold . . 1 - 99 copies

Average sale per ISBN through bookstores: 15 copies
(Based on BookScan-Sales from 4,000 retailers, excluding supermarkets)

Bookscan does not get numbers from all bookstores and does not count sales made by the 82,000+ publishers in the U.S. to individuals and stores outside the book trade.

So, bookstores move the higher-selling books and far more books are sold outside the booktrade.

Statistics for this post are courtesy of Dan Poynter from his newsletter, "Publishing Poynters."

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