EIBF is pleased to announce the publication of the Global Bookselling Markets report for 2022, which explores current trends in the sector, analyses the impact of inflation on bookshops and highlights the different development paths they could take in the future.
2022 has been a year of transformation and transition for the bookselling industry, following two unprecedented years of disruption. When looking at the overall book sales numbers from all the analysed markets, we can observe two distinct trends across the globe. Half of the analysed markets experienced a clear decrease in book sales last year, while the other half reported stability and, in some cases, a positive development in turnover.
Broadly speaking, this decline can be explained by two main factors. On the one hand, the exceptional circumstances in 2021: after months of closure, bookshops reopened, boosting sales to a 10-year high, especially at Christmas. Thus, if 2022 sales data still display some positive and encouraging results, they appear very modest when compared to the preceding year. On the other hand, the inflation rising throughout 2022 and the energy crisis, partly caused by the outbreak of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, has limited readers' purchasing power, as well as pushed up production costs within the sector.
That said, when taking a closer look at each of the analysed markets we can see that their performance throughout 2022 has been very diverse. In some cases, the complete return to physical spaces has boosted brick-and-mortar sales. As for digital sales, several of the analysed countries report more modest numbers than in 2021.
The report is based on a survey carried out by EIBF over the past semester. National booksellers associations and EIBF associate members from sixteen countries have responded to a questionnaire, providing an insight into the state of play of their respective markets and the potential directions that the sector could be heading in: Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and United States.