Publisher Revenues Down in May 2015

5474825330_4470fa5928_bThe AAP reports today that the legacy publishing continued its decline into irrelevance in May.

New figures from the 1,209 publishers participating in the AAP’s monthly Snapshot program showed that revenues decline across the board in the first five months of 2015, and also declined in most trade categories.

Overall publisher book sales were down 5.8% for January through May (to $4.0 billion) compared to $4.3 billion for the same period last year. Trade book sales also declined 3.4% (to $2.56 billion, from $2.65 billion) over the 5 month period.

aap logoAll categories, including adult, religious presses, and kids/YA were down in May 2015, compared to May 2014. However, sales of adult books were up 1.5% over the January-May period last year.

In terms of formats, downloadable audiobooks kept the title as the astest-growing format, with 38.0% growth through May. Paperbacks also continued their good performance this year with 8.4% growth, but both hardback books and ebooks were down year-to-date (11.6% and 10.2%, respectively).

Compared to Jan-April figures released last month, the decline has only gotten steeper, suggesting that the May results had dragged down the revenue figures of the previous four months.

For more details, PW and PL both have some figures for the month of May.

image by Images_of_Money


Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. Ed Bear1 September, 2015

    Are there any details listed by publisher? If so, where?

    1. Nate Hoffelder1 September, 2015

      No, sorry.

  2. Sheogorath1 September, 2015

    The AAP reports today that the legacy publishing continued its decline into irrelevance in May even as authors’ revenues continue to rise.
    CTFY. 😉

    1. Nate Hoffelder1 September, 2015

      That latter part isn’t strictly relevant, so I left it out.


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