The next page: Readers have returned to traditional print media, to the benefit of industry operators

Over the past decade, the Book Retailers industry has faced intense competition from external operators such as supermarkets, department stores and online-only retailers as well as competition from e-readers, which led to a tough operating environment at the beginning of the past five-year period. Competitive pressures have been aggravated as online retailers such as Amazon expanded their product ranges to include both new and second-hand goods, pricing them lower than specialist retailers. The growing popularity of audiobooks has also exacerbated competitive pressures.More recently, however, there have been signs of industry growth. In 2015-16, revenue from print books grew rapidly due to the release of popular titles and film more.

Industry Statistics & Market Size
Annual Growth 15-20
Forecast Growth 20-25

Industry Threats & Opportunities

  • The industry has rebounded from a period of considerable pressure, but threats do remain
  • E-readers, which once posed a considerable threat, have declined in popularity in recent years
  • The government has been called on to offer a discount on business rates for small bookshops
  • Industry Report - Industry Analysis Chapter

    The Book Retailers industry faced difficult operating conditions at the start of the past five-year period, as strong online sales limited demand for bricks-and-mortar stores. The decline of the industry was exacerbated by reduced household disposable income. Increased online competition has also weighed on the industry.Nevertheless, the industry has experienced a revival of fortunes. Over the five years through 2019-20, industry revenue is anticipated to increase at a compound annual rate of 2.7%, although this masks a considerable degree of revenue volatility. In 2015-16, revenue from print books grew rapidly thanks to the release of popular titles and film adaptations. Strong demand for non-fiction and children’s titles have also helped buoy revenue. Ope...purchase to read more.

    Additional Insights for the Book Retailers Industry

    IBISWorld identifies 250 Key Success Factors for a business.The most important for the Book Retailers Industry are

  • Ability to alter goods and services produced in favour of market conditions
  • Ability to raise revenue from additional sources
  • Access to niche markets
  • IBISWorld analysts also discuss how external factors such as Total online expenditure and Demand from book publishing in the Book Retailers industry impact industry performance..

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    What's in this report

    What is the Book Retailers Industry?

    Industry participants are primarily engaged in the retail sale of new printed books of all genres. Industry operators purchase book titles from publishers or distributors to sell at the retail level. The industry does not include online book retailers who do not own physical store locations (see IBISWorld report G47.910) or second-hand bookshops (see IBISWorld report G47.790).

    Industry Products
  • Adult non-fiction trade titles
  • Adult fiction trade titles
  • Children's and young adult titles
  • Adult non-fiction specialist titles
  • Textbooks and educational titles
  • Industry Activities
  • Non-fiction book retailing
  • Fiction book retailing
  • Children's book retailing
  • Educational book retailing
  • Table of Contents

    Industry Definition
    Main Activities
    Similar Industries
    Additional Resources
    Industry Statistics Snapshot
    Industry Structure
    Executive Summary
    Executive Summary
    Key External Drivers
  • Total online expenditure
  • Demand from book publishing
  • Real household disposable income
  • Consumer confidence index
  • Demand from supermarkets

  • Current Performance
  • Revenue volatility
  • External competition
  • E-reading
  • Print revival
  • Other growth strategies
  • Market structure and profit
  • Chart: Revenue Growth

  • Industry Outlook
  • A new focus
  • Market structure and profit
  • Business rates
  • Trade with the EU
  • Table: Book Retailers Industry Revenue Outlook

  • Industry Life Cycle
  • Life cycle reasons
  • Chart: Benchmarking - Book Retailers Industry Lifecycle vs The Economy

  • Supply Chains
    Key Buying Industries
  • Consumers

  • Key Selling Industries
  • Book Publishing
  • Wholesale of Other Household Goods

  • Products & Services
  • Adult non-fiction trade titles
  • Children's and young adult titles
  • Adult fiction trade titles
  • Adult non-fiction specialist titles
  • Textbooks and educational titles
  • Other
  • Chart: Book Retailers Industry Products and Services Segmentation

  • Demand Determinants
    Major Markets
  • Consumers aged between 45 and 54
  • Consumers aged between 55 and 64
  • Consumers aged between 35 and 44
  • Consumers aged between 25 and 34
  • Consumers aged under 25
  • Consumers aged over 65
  • Chart: Major Market Segmentation for the Book Retailers Industry

  • International Trade
    Business Locations
    Chart: Business Locations by State
    Market Share Concentration
    Key Success Factors
    Cost Structure Benchmarks
    ProfitOver the five years through 2019-20, IBISWorld estimates industry profit to increase from 2.5% in 2014-15, to 7.1% in the current year. Despite increased competition from supermarkets, online retailers and e-books, margins have slowly continued on an upward trajectory over the period aided by the resurgence in demand for physical books. In addition, intense competition has pushed unprofitable operators out of the market while others players have adapted to changing market trends and expanded their operations. PurchasesPurchases of books for resale are the major expense for the industry, and are expected to account for 50.1% of revenue in 2019-20. Data from the Office for National Statistics suggests that purchase costs have varied considerably over the past five-year period. Overall, however, purchases are expected to have decreased as book publishers offer bulk purchasing discounts in an attempt to drive sales. Declining purchase costs have also aided growth as publishers continue to fight against digital disruption by offering lower prices. WagesDepreciationRentRent is estimated to account for 2.5% in 2019-20. Rent has absorbed an increasingly proportion of revenue over the past five years as prime real estate prices have increased, adding to operators’ expenses. UtilitiesWith minimal capital equipment, utility expenses are expected to account for 1.3% of revenue. MarketingOther
  • Chart: Cost Structure Benchmarking – Sector vs Book Retailers

  • Basis of Competition
    Internal competitionExternal competition
    Barriers to Entry
  • Table: Barrier to Entry Checklist for the Book Retailers Industry

  • Industry Globalization
    Waterstones Booksellers Ltd, WH Smith plc, The Works Stores Limited,
  • Table: Waterstones Booksellers Ltd - financial performance
  • Table: WH Smith plc - financial performance
  • Table: The Works Stores Limited - financial performance

  • Capital Intensity
  • Chart: Level of Capital Intensity for the Book Retailers Industry
  • Chart: Tools of the Trade: Growth Strategies for Success

  • Technology & Systems
    Revenue Volatility
  • Chart: Volatility vs Industry Growth

  • Regulation & Policy
    Industry Assistance
    Table: Industry Data for the Book Retailers Industry
  • Industry Revenue (2011-2025)
  • Industry Gross Product (2011-2025)
  • Establishments (2011-2025)
  • Businesses (2011-2025)
  • Employment (2011-2025)
  • Wages (2011-2025)
  • Wages (2011-2025)
  • Purchases (2011-2025)
  • Profit (2011-2025)
  • Depreciation (2011-2025)
  • Marketing (2011-2025)
  • Rent (2011-2025)
  • Utilities (2011-2025)
  • Other (2011-2025)

  • Table: Annual Percentage Change for Key Industry Data
    Table: Key Ratios for Industry Key Data
    Academic Book
  • A book from which a person can gain knowledge on a particular topic. These books are often used for study.
  • E-Book
  • A book in electronic format that can be read on a computer or downloaded to a portable reading device.
  • E-Reader
  • A handheld device on which electronic versions of books can be read.
  • Hardboard Books
  • A children's book that has a hard cover and thick pages to make it durable for young children.
  • Specialised Book Retailers
  • Bricks-and-mortar stores that focus on the sale of physical books.
  • What Our Customers Say

    Why buy this report?

    IBISWorld’s Book Retailers market research report is a comprehensive guide to market size and growth prospects. Our industry reports offer strategic industry analysis of the factors influencing companies, including new product developments, economic, lifestyle and demographic influences, distribution and supply chain factors and pricing issues. Full analysis accompanies our data forecasts to illustrate how the market responds to emerging industry trends.

    IBISWorld industry market research reports enable you to:
    • Find out about key industry trends
    • Identify threats and opportunities
    • Inform your decisions for marketing, strategy and planning
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    This report on Book Retailers:
    • Provides Market Size information to assist with planning and strategic decisions.
    • Includes the necessary information to perform SWOT, PEST and STEER analysis.
    • Helps you understand market dynamics to give you a deeper understanding industry competition and the supply chain.
    • Analyses key performance and operational metrics so that you can benchmark against your own business, that of your customers’ businesses, or your competitors’ businesses.
    The Book Retailers market research report includes:
    • Historical data and analysis for the key drivers of this industry
    • A five-year forecast of the market and noted trends
    • Detailed research and segmentation for the main products and markets
    • An assessment of the competitive landscape and market shares for major companies
    • And of course, much more

    IBISWorld reports on thousands of industries around the world. Our clients rely on our information and data to stay up-to-date on industry trends across all industries. With this IBISWorld Industry Research Report on Book Retailers, you can expect thoroughly researched, reliable and current information that will help you to make faster, better business decisions.

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