Online Sales

How Publishers Can Fight the Four Horsemen -- Amazon, Apple, Google & Facebook
March 11, 2016 at 4:14 pm

The Digital Book World Conference & Expo (DBW) notably shifted its attitude towards major technology platforms this year. The platform giants Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google were ominously dubbed “The Four Horsemen.” They were referred to as such throughout the conference, and the language used to depict these companies matched the apocalyptic theme. Described as…

Book Industry Data Remains Mysterious at Digital Book World
March 9, 2016 at 2:43 pm

Day two of the Digital Book World Conference opened with a focus on data, particularly data that examines industry-wide bookselling trends. Unfortunately, it’s clear that much of this data is largely incomplete and the conclusions publishers can pull from it are shaky at best. Michael Cader, creator of Publishers Launch, led a session that explored…

Rand Fishkin: Effective SEO Comes Down to Good, “Amplifiable” Content
March 8, 2016 at 2:09 pm

One of the sessions I was most excited to attend at this year’s Digital Book World Conference & Expo was Rand Fishkin’s talk on search engine optimization (SEO) and book discovery. Fishkin is the CEO and founder of Moz, a leading SEO and content marketing software company. I anticipated this session would be filled with…

Is Your Metadata Ready for Direct-to-Consumer Marketing?
March 2, 2016 at 11:52 am

In the age of mobile, digital, social, and online shopping, brand and marketing messages are increasingly interpreted and catalogued by computers. As a result, metadata is taking on a new and important role for authors and publishers. It is becoming a crucial foundation for successful direct-to-consumer marketing and discoverability. We all know that content consumption…

If Amazon Pricing of Ebooks Is the Problem, Is Agency Actually the Right Solution?
February 29, 2016 at 1:59 pm

In the past week, I’ve had conversations with leading executives at two of Amazon’s competitors in the ebook space. They had strikingly different takes on whether the agency pricing regime, which is now in place by contract with all five of the biggest trade publishers, helps keep competitive balance in the ebook marketplace or prevents…

Amazon's Bookstores Should Be Celebrated, Not Feared
February 26, 2016 at 3:22 pm

The view of Amazon from the wider literary world has become increasingly poisonous, to the extent that people have responded with grave concern because the Evil Empire is now … opening bookstores! Is this what we’ve come to, that the opening of new bookstores is something to be feared? Yes – because apparently Amazon will…

B&N & Amazon Take Steps to Reinvent the Bookstore
February 25, 2016 at 3:11 pm

On Tuesday, Barnes & Noble CEO Ron Boire announced at the eTail West conference that B&N will be launching a long-rumored prototype store this year. Though Boire did not reveal the exact launch date or location of this store, he did say that the goal of the store would be to bridge the digital and…

Barnes & Noble Draws Up a Digital Prototype Store
February 24, 2016 at 1:41 pm

Bookseller Barnes & Noble Inc. plans to open a digitally influenced prototype bookstore later this year. CEO Ron Boire made the announcement today at the annual eTail West conference in Palm Springs, Calif. “One of the challenges of that store is going to be the digital experience,” he said. “I don’t think until you’re fully…

Many Questions, Few Answers in Latest Author Earnings Report
February 10, 2016 at 3:52 pm

First published in 2014, the second edition of the controversial “Author Earnings Report” was released this week. Written by the mysterious “Data Guy,” the report claims that traditional publishers, particularly the Big 5, have experienced a significant slump in ebook sales on Amazon in 2015 while indie-published authors surged ahead. According to Data Guy, “The…

What Dallas-Based Half Price Books Has to Say About Amazon Opening Bookstores
February 3, 2016 at 1:26 pm

What does Half Price Books, No. 3 U.S. bookstore chain, think about Amazon.com opening bookstores? Amazon is probably finding out with the one store it opened in Seattle last year that “it’s not as easy and running a warehouse,” said Half Price Books executive vice president Kathy Doyle Thomas. But more importantly, she said, Half…