Publishers' Outlook 2011
According to West Academic's Justin Hummel, the company's digital tools, such as The West Education Network (TWEN) "are changing how people are using [and] accessing content."
Rothberg: Online retail will continue to grow for sales of both physical and digital books. The bricks-and-mortar marketplace has been unsettled for the last couple of years, due to … the economy, the growth of online and financial pressures. We certainly hope that traffic increases and consumers come back to retail in pre-recession levels.
BB: How many titles will S&S publish in 2011? How does this compare to 2010?
Rothberg: We publish, domestically, nearly 2,000 titles annually, and will do so again in 2011. That number includes reprints, which have a separate ISBN and represent a different purchasing decision for the consumer.
Neil M. Alexander, President and Publisher, United Methodist Publishing House
➜ United Methodist Publishing House (UMPH) encompasses Cokesbury Press, a publisher and distributor of materials for Christian clergy and laity, as well as Abingdon Press, teen website ILeadYouth.com, and several other websites. As part of an overall digital strategy designed to improve customer experiences, UMPH recently enhanced its two core websites, Cokesbury.com and AbingdonPress.com. Cokesbury also operates 64 retail locations in the United States and is the lead retail publishing outlet for several other religious denominations.
BB: Why was now a good time to improve your websites? Do you expect online sales to be your fastest- growing sales medium in 2011?
Alexander: Improvements to our retail site, Cokesbury.com, are ongoing every year and not triggered by a point-in-time event. The bar is set high and rising in the marketplace, and customer expectations are increasing with respect to search capabilities and ease of check-out. Yes, we expect that online sales will be our fastest-growing Cokesbury retail channel in 2011.
The Abingdon Press site was enhanced to support the launch of the Abingdon Fiction line, which is more end-user/customer and author-relationship centric than many of our other publishing categories. And yes, we expect that sales of Abingdon Press books through Amazon, B&N.com and other online retailers will be our areas of biggest growth next year for both print and digital formats.