Business books have been a big hit for the online bookseller since its inception, but it’s the new wave of ebook sales that are really taking off.
But where are they coming from?
The first step in understanding this is to look at the sales numbers.
For example, Amazon’s Kindle bookstores are seeing a huge boost in ebook sales this year.
This week, the e-commerce giant revealed that its sales of e-books had grown by an incredible 70% year-on-year to $13bn (£7bn).
The company says this growth is due to a number of factors, including the popularity of books on the Kindle app and Kindle Book Club.
But it’s hard to pinpoint exactly how it all started, as the ebooks are not necessarily from the same company.
“When we started in 2007, we did not have the sales model that we have today,” says Mark Foskett, Amazon Publishing Group head of digital and Kindle publishing.
“There were a lot of different companies competing and competing with each other, and we had to adapt.
Now, we have the platform to compete with those other publishers and compete with other publishers on an equal footing.”
The growth in ebook revenues over the past few years is a direct result of this innovation.
“We have the ability to build this ecosystem with publishers,” says Foske.
“And then once we have this platform, publishers will want to add it to their books.”
This year, Amazon is expanding the reach of its Kindle app, which lets you buy books directly from Amazon, and now lets you order and download your books from other retailers.
It’s also introducing the Kindle Book Store, which is currently limited to Amazon.com.
Amazon says that this will make it easier for publishers to sell their books online.
However, Amazon isn’t the only publisher making an impact in this space.
“With Amazon, we’ve been able to build the ecommerce ecosystem for authors, publishers and retailers to sell our books, and they have the same opportunity to sell books online as they do on their own,” says Chris Lacey, director of eBooks and Kindle at Apple.
“That’s a big change from, say, Barnes & Noble or Target.”
The Amazon platform allows publishers to put their books on shelves at Amazon, Apple and other retailers, so the books are available to customers from all over the world.
The e-reader is also a great way to get into the Kindle book club, which has over 50,000 members.
“As we’ve seen with the Kindle, when you’re doing that, there’s always a lot more to learn about how to best sell your book,” says Lacey.
“Amazon is helping to bridge that gap by providing access to Kindle books in a more seamless way than we’ve had in the past.”
While the Kindle is certainly benefiting from the rise in ebook volumes, the platform is also being used to market new products from publishers like Simon & Fisher, which recently announced that it would start offering its books for free on the eShop.
“The Kindle has been an incredible tool for authors to build their audience,” says Peter Stenning, managing director of Simon &s; Fisher.
“They’re using Kindle books to sell to a much wider audience than they would have done otherwise.
We believe this is a great opportunity for authors and publishers to tap into the potential of ebooks and create a new marketplace for authors.”
The eShop is also bringing in a whole host of new retailers.
Amazon announced last week that it will launch a new Amazon Books division to offer its authors an opportunity to promote their books at new and established retailers.
The first big retailer to launch in this new role is Amazon, which launched its own eShop in November and has launched more than 20 new stores.
These are all places where Amazon will sell the books, but Amazon says it will be open to partnering with other retailers to provide authors with the tools they need to create and sell their bestsellers.
“A great way for an author to expand their reach is to sell directly to a retailer,” says Stenting.
“It’s a great platform for authors who want to grow their business, but don’t have the tools to grow in that way.
They can now have their books reach the widest possible audience through the Amazon platform.”
The next big step is the eBookstore, which Amazon announced it will open in May next year.
These will be retail stores that are designed to be an online destination for books.
The Amazon Books section of the eBooks section of Amazon’s website will also have a section dedicated to books on sale in the Amazon Books store.
There are also a number that are curated to focus on the genres that are the most popular among authors.
“These new books are being curated to create an even more seamless platform for creators to sell,” says Gaurav Srivastava, chief operating officer at the publisher Simon &ing