International publishing news from the perspective of China

REPORTSIndustry ReportAnalytical Presentation on Book Market in China in February 2017

Analytical Presentation on Book Market in China in February 2017

2017-06-22 16:13:26
by Yuanna Dou

International Publishing Journal

Beijing Openbook Information & Technology Co., Ltd.


Fiction: Miracles of the Namiya General Store topped the list once again; High-quality IP promoted the overall sales of the original

In February 2017, as the impact of winter holidays gradually weakened, the Bestselling Fiction list holds a relatively stable status once again with Miracles of the Namiya General Store topping the list; otherwise the list shows a few changes Throughout the whole list, Keigo Higashino's works still display an increase in popularity this month. Miracles of the Namiya General Store, Journey Under the Midnight Sun , The Devotion of Suspect X and Laplace's Witch which were on the list last month had an overall rise this month, and Salvation of a Saint debuts on the list. In addition, Malice (2016 Eadition) also had obvious ascension in ranking, and made it to the Top 40.


On the list for fiction, two editions of The Peach Blossom of the Three Lives joined forces in the market under an obvious influence of the hit TV series with the same name. The Peach Blossom of the Three Lives by Tang Qi is an ancient romance novel, and a hot net work literacy Intellectual Property (IP).


Since 2015, the so called "First IP Year", network literature has made up a substantial proportion in show business. The union among network literacy, film and television has improved the latter's advertising, whilst opening a new door for promotion and marketing of the original novels. However, while net literature can provide the adapted dramas a vast new audience with online fans, not all adaptions has received desirable recognition.


Starting in 2016, an increasing number of adapted dramas appeared turned out to be failures with little to no positive appreciation; audiences were even less eager to buy the original novels. In stark contrast, those which were not popular IPs, such as Ode to Joy and With You, have promoted the sales of the original novels and made it onto the Bestselling Fiction List.


Non-Fiction: Classic bestsellers back on the list; Hot new books get ranks on the list

The Non-fiction Bestseller List has seen a few changes overall in February 2017. Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow and Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Harari dominated by ranking Top 2 in the list. Two new books Speak Well: Fresh and Interesting Speaking Skills and Biography of Celebrities (New Edition) joined the list. Two other editions of Biography of Celebrities were also on the Top 30. Stories about the Ming Dynasty: the Vile CourtΙΙΙ published in 2011 made its first appearance on the list, ranking 30. Besides, another two bestsellers As Long as You Are Here and The Willpower Instinct:the Most Popular Psychology Course at Stanford (Hardcover) made a return on the list.


U CAN U BIBI was the first talent talk show in China launched by Iqiyi in 2014. The host Ma Dong teamed up with Cai Kangyong and Gao Xiaosong, two prominent debate coaches. The show was designed as a talent search for someone of ethnic Chinese origin, with a vast knowledge as well as perspective on various matters as well as being an excellent speaker; or as they called it "the most eloquent human". This web show has won a great number of die-hard fans by its onstage energy, type of entertainment, and topics discussed.


In June 2016, the host Ma Dong led a think-tank consisting of Ma Weiwei, Zhou Xuanyi, Huang Zhizhong, and those who have participated in the show U CAN U BIBI, launched an online audio course SPEAK WELL . In the following December, a new book produced by Ma Dong and co-written by Ma Weiwei, Huang Zhizhong, Zhou Xuanyi and others, Speak Well: Fresh And Interesting Speaking Skills aroused a buzz in the media and public the moment it was published. The book ranked No.5 on the Non-fiction Bestseller List this month.




Children's Books: Sales Fall Back, Periodic Changes Obviously

In February 2017, right after the Chinese New Year holiday, the market sales figures for Children's books fell by 8.13% on a month-by-month pattern. Recommended books and classics are still the two major categories on the children's bestsellers list, which also includes other genres.


Compared by the figures from the month earlier, the list changed little as the Top 3 titles remained the same. However, as the winter holidays came to an end, the rankings of several recommended classics dropped. The rankings of The Piggy Xilihulu (Part I,II), The Cricket in Time Square, Pippi Langstrumpf and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory dropped sharply by at least 5 positions, respectively. Additionally, these recommended classics are estimated to fade out of the bestselling children's list gradually, then rejoin when the summer holiday comes.


Apart from those with a noticeable drop in rankings, some books actually witnessed a rise, amongst which Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows ranked No.11, a big ascension by 16 places. Since the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child topping the list in November last year, there has been four volumes of Harry Potter series on the list every month.


Openbook's Bestselling Children's rankings has seen an obvious pattern which alternates during the winter and summer holidays. During summer and winter holidays, the List shows more genres represented on the Bestseller List; on the contrary, books in series dominate the list during non-holidays, also referred as a slack season.


Apart from the periodic changes shown on Children's Bestseller List, there are similarities as well for the list of both physical and online bookstores. As for the similarities, both sales channels have recommended books category showing up regularly on the list, though the monthly sales figures of these books differ greatly through the year, such as classics like The Winter of Three Hairs (Complete Works)(Colored and Phonetic Edition) and Charlotte's Web and so on.


In terms of irregularities, the genres of the ranked books would be very different. For physical stores, listed books are primarily children's literature; while the ranking would present more genres in the ranked books on online bookstores. With the exception of children's literature and cartoon/comic/picture books, children's science encyclopedia, puzzle games and children's English are all on the list as well. Additionally, volume sets of books are more frequently listed on online stores while the majority of listed books in physical stores are single copies.



Analytical Presentation on the growth of Physical Bookstores in February 2017 

Month-on-Month Analysis

In February 2017, the number of physical bookstores have reached 410.47, rising by 52.83 points compared with last January, with an increase of 14.77% in a month-on-month term. Among the main 12 genre markets of physical bookstores nationwide, with the exception of children’s books, all genres have shown a decline. The remaining 11 genre markets have experienced an ascension compared with figures month earlier. Additionally, the Engineering & Technology category had a large rise of 46.75% while children’s book decreased by 8.13% on a month-on-month term.


Year-on-year Analysis

In comparison with that of last year, the number of physical bookstores increased by 6.93% in a year-on-year term in February 2017. Engineering & technology, literature, academic culture, reference books, English, psychological self-help, children, art and economics & market management have all increased respectively compared with the figures from same period of last year, among which engineering & technology showing the biggest growth with 12.76%. The sales for the remaining 3 genres dropped in a year-on-year basis, with medicine showing the biggest decline of 13.08%.


Regional Analysis

In contrast with the sales figures from physical bookstores in five major regions in January 2017, all regions showed growth in a month-on-month basis, except for the Northeastern region. Compared with the same period last year, Northern China, Western China, Eastern China and Northeastern China have all witnessed a rise, while Central South Region dropped. 



2017-06-22 16:13:26
by Yuanna Dou


Have 0 comments
Read More