Online Sales

Why Oyster Now Sells Ebooks Too
April 14, 2015

Oyster started as an all-you-can-read ebook subscription service but they recently decided to expand their reach by selling individual ebooks as well. There's been plenty of speculation on why they made this move, including catching up to competitors like Scribd and Amazon. While the competitive point is valid, I think there are two more important reasons for this move: sustainability and customer loyalty.

‘Read First, Pay What You Want’ Ebookstore Launches at London Book Fair
April 14, 2015

A groundbreaking new Independent ebookstore is preparing to launch at the London Book Fair 2015, setting a new precedent with its reader-determined pricing model that offers unlimited copying and sharing, alongside higher levels of compensation for authors. is the first online book retailer to operate its unique and exceptional ‘Read First, Then Pay What You Want’ model, whereby readers can download an eBook for free in EPUB, MOBI or PDF, read it, share it with their friends and decide if and how much they want to pay

Oyster Is Selling Ebooks Now. But Is It Targeting Amazon?
April 10, 2015

Yesterday, the company announced it would be opening an ebookstore, featuring titles from existing clients and the two Big 5 holdouts, Hachette and Penguin Random House. The ebook subscription-which earned the company the moniker 'The Netflix for Books"-remains the company's core identity, but the store is a major development, especially because it's open to non-subscribers. (Melville House books are available for purchase because-final full disclosure-we are distributed by PRH.) While the "ebookstore" (which is a bad word, by the way) element of this story has gotten the most play in the media

Exploring “Smart Bookstores” and Libraries of the Future
April 9, 2015

From intelligent carpets to motion sensor beacons, there are all kinds of technologies in development that will transform our experience of bookstores and other physical spaces. Javier Celaya and Elisa Yuste from - which provides counseling and training services to publishing sector companies - are presenting an overview of what's ahead at the Publishing for Digital Minds Conference in London next week. Here's a teaser.

HarperCollins to Bring Back Agency Pricing as Early As Next Week
April 9, 2015

Following tense months-long negotiations with Amazon, HarperCollins is reportedly planning to force ebook retailers to adopt agency pricing as early as next week. Publishers Lunch reports that:

Multiple retailers report that Harper has informed them their selling terms will change as of Tuesday, April 14. (The change is actually effective midnight Pacific time, rather than Eastern. Amazon would be among those companies that naturally end their business day on Pacific time.) Harper is requiring retailers to implement all price changes within 24 hours.

Amazon is a More “Modest Beast,” says UK Tech Expert
April 7, 2015

"Amazon is no longer as powerful as it seemed" and is suffering a crisis, argues Charles Arthur, ex-tech editor of the Guardian and author of Digital Wars.

If ever there was a place to proclaim the beginning of the end of Amazon, that nemesis of the publishing industry, then it couldn't get much better than the London Book Fair.

And this is precisely what Charles Arthur, author of Digital Wars: Apple, Google, Microsoft and the Battle for the Internet, is planning on doing when he presents his speech "Amazon: An Objective Case Study"

The Sad Story of the Bookish Ecommerce Platform
April 6, 2015

In 2011, three of the world's largest book publishers -- Hachette, Simon & Schuster (CBS) and Penguin, which is now part of Penguin Random House -- banded together to create an online book retail site called Bookish, which they hoped would counter Amazon. At the time, the companies said the site was created for "engaging and informing readers about authors and books," essentially, giving them smarter, more useful recommendations on books. But most observers clearly understood that the actual goal was to challenge Amazon's growing hegemony in book retail.

France, Germany, Italy, Poland Call for Lowering VAT on Ebooks
April 2, 2015

In an unprecedented move, the Culture Ministers of France, Germany, Italy and Poland have jointly called on the European Commission to modify the European Union's law to ensure that ebooks and paper books carry the same value-added tax (VAT) rate. The latest initiative follows a recent ruling by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) which states that ebooks are not equal to paper books, and as such the same VAT rate should not apply.

The Ubiquitous Bookstore
April 1, 2015

A new bookstore is going to have to bring its offerings to where people are rather than the other way around; a new bookstore has to be ubiquitous. A recent example of this comes from HarperCollins,which has created an arrangement with Twitter to sell copies of the bestselling Divergent series of young adult novels from within individual tweets. If the implications of this aren't clear, look closely. Hundreds of millions of people swap information via social media every day. Now these online conversations can have bookstores

HarperCollins May Withdraw All Its Books from Amazon
April 1, 2015

The contract between "Big Five" book publisher HarperCollins and Amazon is about to expire, and HarperCollins is refusing to sign an agreement with the new terms that Amazon is asking, a source with knowledge of the situation tells Business Insider. 

The contract presented to HarperCollins was the same contract recently signed by Simon & Schuster, Hachette, and Macmillan, Amazon confirmed.

If HarperCollins and Amazon don't come to an agreement, no print or digital HarperCollins books will be available on Amazon once its existing contract runs out "very soon," our source says.