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Survey : ebooks boom

Posted by Michael Bloch in web marketing (Saturday December 19, 2009 )

2009 will probably be the year remembered as being the real beginning of ebook popularity thanks to rapid Kindle and other e-reader uptake. The growth rate of e-book trade sales was an incredible 176% this year and the time ahead looks good for ebooks in all sorts of formats – half a billion dollars worth next year.

While the Kindle may seem to be synonymous with ebooks now, according to an item on Internet Retailer referencing a Forrester report; a mail survey of 4,711 consumers found that people weren’t only interested in reading ebooks on a dedicated ebook reader. 19% say they would read e-books on a desktop, 11% on a notebook computer and 5% on a smartphone.

I love to read paper-based books, but having a bit of a green streak, I always think about the paper. I recently watched a colleague grab a copy of Kindle for the iPhone and then purchase and downloaded a book. I was pretty impressed – the whole buying process was very smooth, the book text was very easy to read and while there’s a lot of page turning, it’s very quick.

But you don’t have to set out to design something for the iPhone – an ebook can be as simple as a PDF for people to view on their desktop computer (or iPhone for that matter). If you want a little more control to prevent people from distributing a premium ebook product to all and sundry, there’s also some great ebook generator software available.

Ebooks don’t have to be a premium product either – they can be used as a marketing tool – incentives for newsletter subscription signups or as bonus products to accompany purchases. Remember that an ebook doesn’t have to be an epic novel; it’s just a self contained document that can be viewed offline – it could be a report, a compilation of tips on a specific topic, blueprints, whatever – and “free ebook” sounds a lot more enticing than “free document” :).

Learn more about creating ebooks and ebook generator software


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