With the year drawing to a close, everyone has been gazing into their crystal ball while trying to predict the major trends of the coming year.
In past year’s I have sat out this annual tradition, but no longer. The following posts details a few of the trends and events I expect to see in 2019.
Other year-end posts have made the prediction that self-published authors will earn more in 2019 than before. I considered making the same prediction, but then I realized one part of the industry would consider it self-evident while another part (the industry segment that still doesn’t regard authors as part of the industry) would consider it bunk.
Thus, I will skip over this prediction and instead make the safe prediction that everyone will continue to disagree about the state of the industry. The one prediction that I can make is that Amazon will sell more books in 2019 than they did in 2018.
Barnes & Noble
This will be the year that Barnes & Noble will face a financial crisis. Following years of mismanagement, CEO musical chairs, and nasty infighting, will the company will reach the point where it is unable to cover its operating expenses because it can’t extend its line of credit. B&N will file for bankruptcy protection, and may be forced to liquidate. If it does survive, B&N will shed many of its money losing stores and also sell/outsource the Nook to Kobo.
Amazon is going to amaze everyone by releasing a new Kindle that will include incremental improvements over an existing model. Several of the new features will be hailed as ground-breaking and innovative even though competing ereaders had already contained similar features.
There will however also be at least one new and interesting ereader related device in 2019, but it will come from an unexpected source rather than from one of the major tech companies.
Amazon will expand its Amazon Author Academy program. These one-day conferences are currently only being held n the UK, but I expect that similar events will be held in the US in 2019. I predict the first one will be scheduled to coincide with BookExpo 2019 in New York City.
Facebook will make headlines again in 2018. At least one of the scandals will focus on ad fraud similar to the revelation that video plays were being systematically over-counted. Internal Facebook docs leaked to media outlets will show that Facebook knew that half or more of the ad impressions recorded were actually from bots rather than people.
At the same time, Amazon will continue to grow their ad revenues. Rumors are circulating that Amazon will remove the also-boughts section from book listings in order to squeeze in more adverts, and we will also see more adverts take up space on Amazon’s search result pages. Adverts have already pushed organic results off the bottom of Amazon search result pages, and in 2019 the number of adverts will increase.
O O O
So there you have it: my publishing predictions for 2019. How do they stack up against your predictions?