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As eBook Sales Grow, So Do Online Opportunities

Posted on 4.17.2011

We’ve discussed the potentially big business of eBooks here in the past, and it’s happening even faster than expected.

Not only have eBook sales tripled in the past year, but the total February sales of digitally formatted books were higher than all of their traditionally paper-formatted counterparts, according to the Association of American Publishers. For the month, and for the first time in history, e-book sales outpaced those of hardcover books, trade paperbacks and mass-market paperbacks.

That is no small feat. And for those traditionalists afraid of what the rise of eBooks would do for the publishing industry, there’s another equally extraordinary effect occurring.

“Trade publishing houses cite eBooks as generating fresh consumer interest in – and new revenue streams for – backlist titles,” the AAP reported.

Backlist titles are books that have been in print for more than a year, and many publishers are reporting that eBook enthusiasts often buy an author’s full backlist after digitally consuming a new release.

This is uplifting news for authors, publishers and the book publishing industry as a whole, as well as for opportunistic online entrepreneurs.

For many, the potential within the space has been obvious for several years. But the fact that a once reluctant industry is now widely accepting the medium as a savior rather than a threat greatly enhances the possibilities.

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