Digital book sales have been in a state of freefall all year long, in the United States. eBook revenues were down 8.3% for the month as compared to April 2021 for a total of $84.3 million. The Downloaded Audio format was up 5.6% for April, coming in at $66.6 million in revenue. Physical Audio, such as CD’s was down 47.9% coming in at $1.2 million. Are trade sales, such as paperbacks and hardcovers making up for the decline?
Year-to-date eBook revenues were down 9.7% as compared to the first four months of 2021 for a total of $338.1 million. Digital audiobooks was up 3.4%, coming in at $261.1 million in revenue. Physical Audio was down 31.5% coming in at $4.9 million.
Trade (Consumer Books) sales were down 8.9% in April, coming in at $685.7 million. In terms of physical paper format revenues during the month of April, in the Trade (Consumer Books) category, Hardback revenues were down 16.8%, coming in at $232.4 million; Paperbacks were down 2.8%, with $251.9 million in revenue; Mass Market was down 22.0% to $14.1 million.
Year-to-date Trade revenues were down 1.0%, at $2.8 billion for the first four months of the year. Hardback revenues were down 6.8%, coming in at $974.0 million; Paperbacks were up 9.6%, with $1.0 billion in revenue; Mass Market was down 20.5% to $63.6 million; and Special Bindings were down 2.0%, with $56.1 million in revenue.
Michael Kozlowski has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past twelve years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times. He Lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.