It is January. It is time for everyone to make predictions about the next year. I have read as many as I can. For even if I disagree with the predictions, I do like to understand the logic. Many say the same things. Certain predictions are easy (the eBook growth will flatten a bit and the years of triple-digit growth are over). Some are crazy. But then in a transformative time, crazy can quickly seem normal.
As Jimmy Buffett sings,“If we weren’t all crazy, we would go insane.”
Maybe these are just continuing trends rather than predictions. Everything is in motion and what I see in 2013 is some intensifying and others easing.
So my thoughts for 2013:
- Ebook growth will continue to flatten. The growth will continue to be healthy but in double digits.
- Digital sales will end 2013 as 33% of the overall trade book business. It is around 20% now.
- Children digital will continue to be more and more about subscriptions and web sites. Disney, Scholastic, Ruckus and Amazon to lead. Consuming children’s content continues to blur the lines. What is an eBook? Video? game? etc….
- There will be a serious new player in selling eBooks in America. The last major platform was Apple iBookstore.
- There will be more consolidation among the corporate publishers. Everyone is saying this. So, I almost feel bad putting it in. But there needs to be a few easy ones so my overall prediction rate is better.
- A major author will split from his/her Big 6 publisher and branch out independently.
- Amazon will continue to be the eBook sales leader, but will have growing pains in their publishing operations.
- Publishers will lighten up a bit and start to experiment much more in 2013 than in the past five years.
- Magazines will continue to create eBooks from their content. But will start to question if this is actually helpful and worth the efforts.
- Porn will not dominate the top of the best-sellers lists as it did in 2012. 50 SHADES has brought it out of the darkness (and that is a good thing) and stores will continue to stock and sell. The category will continue to grow, but the huge sales at the top will erode.
- Physical bookstores will continue to evolve and offer consumables in the store. First it was coffee; then food; then wine; maybe weed in CO and WA?
- Graphic novels and comics will have an explosive year in growth. Many will read on their smartphones.
- The New York Mets will win the World Series.