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European consumers flock to online booksellers

30 October 2013 - 13:23 by Mike Price

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Close to a quarter of people in the EU have used safe shopping online to purchase books and magazines in the past 12 months, according to a report published by Eurostat.

People living in Luxembourg were found to be the most voracious consumers of this type of material, with 47 per cent of respondents to the study saying that they had used e-commerce sites to buy literature and other educational resources this year.

The UK lags a little behind, with 36 per cent asserting their interest in online book sales, but this still puts Brits ahead of the continental average.

The same study conducted back in 2008, found that just 27 per cent of UK consumers had bought books online at the time, which shows that this market has grown over the intervening half decade, according to The Bookseller.

Analysts found that countries which are more recent additions to the EU, where e-commerce and internet infrastructures tend to be a little less extensive, are home to lower levels of online book sales, which is to be expected.

The study also looked at different types of products and their popularity in the e-commerce sphere across Europe.

The most popular items include clothes and sportswear, along with the arrangement of travel and accommodation for holidaymakers.

Although there are some who feel that the rise of eBooks is a bad thing, the good news is that in the UK, people are still keen to own physical copies of their favourite reads, even if they are being purchased via safe shopping online.

The web has made literature and content of all kinds available to a huge audience, but the digital revolution has not completely killed off books, as a growth in recent sales clearly shows.