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Ebook Revenues Rising Abroad For American Publishers

29 June 2013

From Digital Book World:

Ebook revenues for American publishers selling the digital content abroad are rising — both in aggregate and as a percentage of overall international book publishing revenues.

According to the latest data from the Association of American Publishers, revenues for American Publishers selling ebooks internationally rose 63% to $121.5 million. Meanwhile, international print revenue increased 1.3% to $711.8 million.

Internationally, where Amazon, Apple and Kobo dominate ebook sales in many countries, ebooks now account for 14.5% of all publisher revenues.

Link to the rest at Digital Book World

Ebooks, Non-US

10 Comments to “Ebook Revenues Rising Abroad For American Publishers”

  1. Oh, gee, when WILL this tiresome ebook fad ever end…

    • Patricia Sierra

      It’ll end when Jeff Bezos figures out how to transfer books directly into our brains.

  2. This is why I’m can’t use KDP Select. I’m surprised Amazon is included in the mix above.
    My (admittedly-modest-compared-to-Romance-people) sales to overseas markets via Smashwords are increasing and broadening each quarter while my Amazon sales, almost all to American and British readers have plateau’ed now for a year of only consistent sales. Yeah, I’m grateful, but I had hoped for more lift-off. My monthly Amazon deposits all look about the same over a two-year stretch. So now, Smashwords sales are running neck and neck with Amazon. Well, make that trotting along.
    Perhaps this is because my legacy books were a bigger success outside America in the first place, (the publishing house was based in London). I’d be thrilled if Amazon could compete with Apple or Kobo in Australia, Canada and New Zealand, but so far, it’s just not happening in my own Amazon reports. Maybe others are doing better with Amazon outside the States.
    I also think it’s a question of attitude. Smashwords’ Mark Coker just launched a “Summer-Winter” promotion starting July 1 with coupons. N.B. Summer AND Winter in July. This doesn’t seem to be Amazon’s global mindset yet.
    I’ve had enough Euro sales to add it to my spreadsheet, but these seem to be aberrations, not markets for me.
    Are are any other Anglophones out there doing really well with Amazon Canada?

  3. I’m not doing any better in Canada than elsewhere, but I am pleased to have sales in so many different countries. I’ve even sold one book in France. I don’t know why that tickles me so much, but it does.

    • Patricia Sierra

      I have the same reaction when I see my foreign sales. I’m perplexed about one country — Japan — because my Christmas story for kids sells there no matter what time of the year it is.

  4. I’ve had nearly zero success at Smashwords and only small success at B&N. Most of my sales are from Amazon. This seems to match general reports about these venues.

    Having said this: yes, my sales at Amazon have also plateaued. I ascribe it to the enormous increase in self-pubbed books offered at very low prices or free.

    My foreign sales are a welcome addition. From what I can see, I now have modest sales in the UK, but slowly Canada (added more recently), France, and Germany show regular sales and others are beginning to show some life.

    For me, Amazon is still the best bet. It may soon be the only one.

  5. To give the flip-side on this, being an American who is finally able to read my favorite New Zealand authors, for example, without having to pay as much (or more) for shipping as I did for the cost of the book, I rejoice by how ebooks bring world authors closer to me on time and cost levels. To get physically closer than the New Zealand example I originally gave, even when just looking at U.K. purchases I’ve had to wait “weeks” sometimes for books I could only buy from British booksellers, as the purchases had to finally make it through Royal Mail and into the USPS system to reach my door. And don’t even get me started on paying ten times or more in shipping charges than American shipping costs to get even slow foreign shipping. Worse, any sub-level packaging meant my books didn’t arrive in “New” condition, but I never wanted to send them back for better copies since I would have had to wait those same weeks again.

    Other countries have had this same problem with purchasing American published books. They had to pay the huge shipping costs and long waits.

    Thank goodness for ebooks.

  6. Amazon is far and away the best for me but I’ve been excited to see sales in New Zealand (2nd behind Canada) on Kobo for the last 2 months.

  7. I had my best month EVER in the UK this month – it’s actually a significant portion of my sales for the month. Go, UK pervs, go!

    In related news, I was at a panel at Duckon yesterday about ebooks. Four tradpub authors (including one who runs a small press.) Refreshingly, only one of them hated ebooks, and two of them unreservedly declared that they loved ’em. And even the hater dude admitted that when he got the rights back on some of his books and published them through his press, he didn’t sell any books for 18 months because he refused to put out electronic editions. He finally gave up and did it and now he’s selling books. He still hates them – he’s a book designer and it apparently offends him that he can’t use drop caps on Kindles, or something – but he couldn’t deny that it got the books in readers’ hands and made money for his authors.

    One of the questions that was asked was about the greater reach of ebooks, and the short answer was, “Yep, you can reach a lot more readers with ’em.”

  8. Fascinating stats. No doubt with Amazon making inroads into major foreign markets with large numbers of English speakers such as India this will only increase. I just wrote this blog post about Amazon’s global domination if you are interested – http://guyportman.com/2013/07/05/amazons-domination/

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