The print book and physical music sectors showed resilience this Christmas despite the prevalence of digital rivals, according to new data.
In the week leading up to Christmas Day, the print book market recorded sales of £83.3m.
This marks the highest takings during the seven-day period since 2007, according to figures from Nielsen BookScan, as reported by The Bookseller.
Overall sales in the print book category across 2016 were up for the second consecutive year.
In 51 weeks of 2016, 192 million physical books were sold for a total of £1.56bn – 5.1% up on 2015’s 52-week total, and 2.5% up with a week in hand.
In his end-of-year review, Booksellers Association chief executive Tim Godfray said: “The graph for booksellers is starting to move up, after a very difficult period.
“Thank heavens so many were wide of the mark when predicting the death of the physical bookshop and the demise of the printed book.
“Consumers do appear to be coming back to the printed book and to bookshops.”
The biggest-selling book of 2016 – shifting 1.45 million copies at a value of £15.8m – was Jack Thorne’s play script of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.
Paula Hawkins’ The Girl on the Train was the biggest adult fiction title, with 1.1 million copies sold for a total of £5.3m, and Joe Wicks’ Lean in 15 was the best-selling non-fiction title.
The rebirth of vinyl
Likewise, a resurgence in vinyl records has spurred sales in the physical music category.
According to figures from the BPI, the UK labels’ association, vinyl sales topped £3.2m – up 53% year-on-year and the highest sales figure since 1991.
David Bowie’s Blackstar was the year’s biggest-selling vinyl album. Bowie also had four other albums in the Top 30 vinyl albums of the year.
BPI chief executive Geoff Taylor said: “Led by sales of David Bowie, demand for vinyl jumped to levels not seen since the start of the 90s, and fans also bought and collected music on CD that they are discovering and enjoying through streaming services in ever-larger numbers.”
But while vinyl sales have been on the rise for nine consecutive years, sales of CDs slumped 11.7% in 2016 to £47.3m.
Physical albums remain the sector’s biggest category, however, accounting for 41% of UK music consumption, at an estimated value of £1bn.
Music streaming now makes up for 36.4% of music consumption and hit a landmark one-billion-stream week in December.