In my book publisher days I recall saying the following to our Amazon rep: “You guys are capturing a ton of reading data from our customers. When are you going to start charging us to access that information?”
She looked at me like I just arrived from another planet and declined to answer the question.
A few years have passed since that encounter but some things never change. Amazon is still the dominant ebook retailer and they continue hoarding reader data, sharing only bits and pieces from time to time. I’m still convinced once day they’ll offer a detailed reader analytics service to publishers…for a price. The data will be anonymized, of course, but it will benefit publishers by shedding valuable light on reading habits and preferences.
In the mean time, Olive Software, the company where I serve as director of strategy, is in the process of revamping its ebook reader app. We want to take our analytics to the next level and we’d like your input. You see, at Olive, we believe in providing publishers with every bit of data about their readers and we do so at no additional charge.
As a former publisher these are the types of questions I would want the data to answer:
- How many people opened the book they bought?
- Did the typical consumer read from beginning to end, in chronological order, or did they jump around a lot, reading out of sequence?
- When readers didn’t finish the book, at what point did they tend to abandon it?
- What are the most popular phrases searched for when reading the book?
I’m sure there are plenty of other questions publishers, editors, marketers, etc., would love to see answered with analytics. What are the questions you need data to help answer?
Click here to email me the reader behavior questions you’d like analytics to answer. I’ll gather all the input and will summarize it in a follow-up article. That’s probably yet another thing Amazon would never do for you. :-)