Where do Americans get their books from?

Ever wondered where the Americans get the book they are reading? The Freckle Report claims to have answers to this as that is specifically what they asked 667 adults in the US as part of its April 2022 survey. As Book Riot revealed, the findings are as interesting as they are important as they shed light on the consumer trend when it comes to procuring print books, e-books, or audiobooks that they wish to read or listen to. The survey also brings to focus the role libraries play in letting readers have what they want to read.

For instance, among the facts that have come to the fore is that 57 percent of the books are read in the print format while the rest 43 percent are in e-book or audiobook forms. This shows the good old print books are still on top of consumer preference though the numbers have come down significantly as 76 percent of books used to be read in print before the pandemic.

Further, that the popularity of audiobooks is ever on the rise is evident in the report that found the particular book format, as a percentage of digital interactions, has witnessed a sharp increase from just 4 percent in 2019 to 16 percent in 2022. That libraries continue to play an important role in letting users have the content they need is also evident given that 18 percent of readers sourced their stuff, both print and digital, from libraries.

That said, online retailers have emerged as the primary source of reading material with 43 percent opting to buy their reading material from online sources. This has come at the cost of sales via offline stores that have witnessed a 15 percent decline while people getting books from family and friends have also dipped by 15 percent.

“This most recent survey shows that libraries help put books in the hands of people,” John Chrastka, Executive Director of EveryLibrary Institute, remarked. “There’s an ongoing misconception that libraries are becoming obsolete, but the survey shows that books and reading continue to be an important part of American culture. Moreover, libraries play a critical role in communities and the culture of reading.”

Mr. Chrastka also said, “Libraries continue to lift people up, supplying them with reading material, research material, and other resources. And we should continue to support libraries in our communities.”

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