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Australian Romance Readers Survey 2015: results

22 October 2015

The Australian Romance Readers Survey for 2015 was launched on
15 August and closed on 30 September. A total of 294 people responded to the survey (down slightly from 310 last year).

You can download the full results HERE, but here’s a look at some of the interesting results:

  • The majority of respondents were from NSW (91), with high rates for Vic (60) and Qld (53). Next was WA (31), SA (25) and ACT (17). Tas had 5 respondents and the NT just 2. The percentages of all these are fairly similar to those from the 2014 survey, with a slight dip in responses from Qld and Vic and a slightly higher response rate from ACT and SA.
  • This year we had only 4 male respondents (down from 7 last year).
  • We had a new question this year about social media. Way out in front was Facebook, with 89.8% of respondents saying they use it. Twitter came in second with 49.1%, then Pinterest on 42.8%.
  • 86.7% of respondents said that 50% or more of the books they read are romances, with 19.9% saying all the books they read are romances.
  • The most popular sub-genre this past year (as for the previous year) was contemporary romance, read by 79.9% of respondents, followed by historical romance (62.5%), romantic suspense (55.5%), rural romance (53.7%, up from 45.6% last year), erotica (51.9%, down from 62.5%), paranormal romance (48.1%, down from 59.8%) and romantic comedy (44.9%).

2015 graph2

  • When asked which one sub-genre they read most often, rural romance has raced into the lead at 24% (up from 10% last year), followed by contemporary romance at 22.6% (down slightly from 23.5% last year). Coming a distant and joint third place were historical romance and erotica on 8.5%.
  • Ebooks have continued as the most frequently purchased book format, now accounting for more than all other formats combined. The chart below shows the decline of mass market purchases (from 68.8% in 2009, falling to 26.8% in 2015) while ebook purchases climb (up from 10.2% in 2009 to a 62.7% in 2015).

2015 graph1

  • 75.6% of respondents indicated they own an ereader or tablet device (down slightly from 78.6% last year); respondents who indicated they don’t read ebooks at all held steady at 8.5%.
  • The Kindle was still by far the most popular ereading device.
  • Buying of paper books is down again this year, with 88% buying less than 5 new romance books a month (85.9% last year) and 9.7% buying 5–10 new books (12.0% last year). The number who don’t buy any new books each month has risen from 23.6% in 2014 to 29.2% in 2015.
  • When comparing ebook purchases to paper books, 63.4% of respondents said more than half of all books they buy are ebooks. That is up from 59.8% last year.

Thank you to everyone who took the time to fill in the survey.


One Comment
  1. Deb permalink
    23 October 2015 12:20 pm

    Loved filling the survey in, and the results are good to look at. thanks Girls for this

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