Voracious readers will often beg or borrow their books from anywhere possible—buy books in person or online, borrow from the library or steal from friends. As part of The Canadian Book Consumer we have the opportunity to drill down into topical questions and we’re interested in understanding more about how book buyers use the library. We look at the following questions:
- How many book buyers use the library?
- How frequently?
- How many loans are e-books compared to print books?
- What happens when a library doesn’t have a book available to patrons or there is a lengthy reserve list?
Here’s a sneak peek of some of our library data. In the first quarter of 2012, 59.43% of book buyers claim to have visited the library within the last 12 months. Of those respondents, 19.4% visit the library, either in person or online, 2 to 3 times a month and 16.3% visited once a month.
HOW FREQUENTLY CANADIAN BOOK BUYERS VISITED THE LIBRARY IN THE LAST 12 MONTHS?
Q1 N= 624
Of the respondents in the first quarter of 2012, 11.4% borrowed one book and 20.83% borrowed five or more titles. Of the books that were borrowed 72.5% were print books.
When asked about what library users do when a book is not in the library the majority of respondents (34.3%) said they would try to get the information from another free source while 22.5% of respondents said they would go and purchase the book.
IF THE LIBRARY DOES NOT HAVE A BOOK YOU WOULD LIKE TO BORROW, WHAT DO YOU DO?
Q2 N= 618
When asked why consumers purchased a certain book there was a notable amount of commentary stating that years ago they had read the book in the library, in particular with regard to children’s book purchases. Gift giving of children’s titles are considerable with 55.83% of all books purchased as gifts being for children or grandchildren.
That’s just some of analysis we’re currently working on. To find out more, you’ll have to wait for us to publish our study, The Canadian Book Consumer, coming out this fall.