Factors that Influence the General Public’s Book Buying Decisions
In 1996 the American Booksellers Association and the Book Industry Study Group did a study called the 1996 Consumer Research Study on Book Publishing. In the survey they asked adult book purchasers what were the most critical factors behind choosing the books they buy. Most people expect that the top reasons people buy books are book covers, marketing, price, reviews, etc. However, the two answers that stand-out beyond all others are:
1) The subject of the book (44%)
2) The author’s reputation (24%)

This implies that authors will do best when they write about a subject that has a strong demand and the author is qualified to address the subject intelligently.

What is the most important factor after the book’s subject and the author’s reputation? A 1997 study sponsored by Publisher’s Weekly and the Book Industry Study Group found that the informational content about the book on the inside flaps and the back cover were most critical (66%).

IMPLICATION FOR WEBSITES: For authors primarily using the Internet to market their books and relying on online purchases, it is essential that the website for the book immediately indicates the subject of the book along with the author’s reputation—ideally on the home page. Second, make sure that the information found on the inside flaps and back cover of your book are easy to find on your site. If you’re missing these keys pieces, or even if this information is not readily available, then you can greatly improve the sales performance of your website by making a few simple changes.

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