Are Parents Under-Reporting the eBooks They Buy for Their Kids?
One common concern with consumer surveys is that the respondents might not answer truthfully. Whether through unconscious bias or simple oversight, there’s always a chance that data from a survey might not be as reliable as it would appear.
It looks like Neilsen may have identified one such set of unreliable data:
For Nielsen’s Children’s Books in the Digital World report, parents of kids 12 and younger were asked the format of the last book they bought for their children. Ninety-six percent of parents of children up to age 6 reported buying a print book, and 94% of parents of children 7-12 said they bought a print book. However, Nielsen’s Books and Consumer research on reported book sales shows that 25%-32% of children’s books were purchased as e-books in the first-quarter of 2014. So based on this data, parents aren’t coming clean about their purchasing behavior, which suggests that they may be under-reporting their e-book purchases.
I don’t have any data on specifically YA/kids ebook sales in relation to that category, but even in the absence of data I don’t think they’re wrong. I think parents are under-reporting the number of ebooks they buy for their kids, though I wouldn’t go so far as to say that "parents appear to have a bias toward print".
Rather, I would bet that the discrepancy comes from a subconscious bias, or rather an oversight. I think more parents don’t connect the act of paying for an ebook on their mobile device with that of buying a paper book – at least, not until they reconcile their checkbooks.
I don’t think it’s anything overt; if that were the case the parents wouldn’t be buying ebooks, wouldn’t you agree?
Why do you think parents are under-reporting the number of ebooks they buy for their kids?
image by by boltron-