Services for Publishers & Distributors

The Nielsen BookScan service is the world’s largest continuous book sales tracking service operating in the UK, Ireland, Australia, South Africa, Italy, US, India, Spain, Brazil and New Zealand.

In the UK we collect total transaction data at the point of sale directly from over 6,500 retailers each week, ensuring that detailed and highly accurate sales information on what books are selling, and at what price, is available to the book trade. In a typical week, sales for over 220,000 different titles representing over £29 million of consumer purchases are collected, coded and analysed, producing complete market information for retailers, publishers, libraries, agents and the media.

This is an invaluable market research tool, providing extra information for publishing strategy, providing answers to questions raised regarding supply chain and reprint decisions and measuring the impact of promotion and levels of sales:

Publishing strategy & new title development

  • How big is the genre?
  • Is it growing or shrinking?
  • What is already selling?
  • In what quantities?
  • What formats exist and at what price?
  • What are the life cycle shapes of titles within this genre?
  • Where is it selling regionally and in what type of store?
  • How are our competitors performing and which authors are driving
    their success?
  • What value should you put on an author?
  • Who are the new and successful authors in other countries?

 Supply chain & reprint decisions

  • How many are selling through?
  • Is there pressure (an over-stocked issue) that will lead to returns or
    a vacuum (under-supply), which will lead to lost sales?
  • When should reprints be timed or cancelled?
  • What should the initial print run be and can we keep it low and then
    reprint quickly to match consumer demand?
  • Controlling stock cost at the warehouse.

Sales & marketing

  • Measuring the impact of promotion
  • Responding to competitors’ initiatives
  • Learning what has worked for others (and what has not!)
  • Reducing marketing spend on under-performing titles and Increasing it on winners
  • Checking that sales levels are matching the business plan
  • Forecast for the title
  • Stimulating sales of a book that is overstocked for its consumer
    demand to eliminate high returns.

BookScan provides essential intelligence to assist with strategic decision-making. In an industry where up-front risk is considered routine, we can help you to decide how many of a title should be printed and to track both new and backlist publications – improving sales whilst reducing costs.
To download the Nielsen Book Research Brochure

Nielsen BookScan Online Sales Summaries is a service specifically designed for smaller publishers and gives you access to sales data as and when you need it: this simple web-based service lets you look up lifetime sales, week-by-week. It also provides expanded weekly bestseller lists covering five key genre with vital information including discount levels and the last ten weeks’ sales, week-by-week. Full training and support are provided, including helping you make the most of the data for your business. 

  • Enter an ISBN and its lifetime sales within the BookScan TCM database will be returned including units sold, retail value and ASP (actual price paid by the consumer)
  • Enter an author's name and sales of ALL that author's titles will be returned including units sold and retail value
  • Set up bespoke author and/or ISBN reports to refresh automatically with last week's sales
  • Each week we also post the details of the Top 50 bestselling titles by five key genre (Hardback and Paperback Fiction; Hardback and Paperback Non-Fiction and Children's)

In addition to the above, you have open access to all book sales data for the UK market.

  • Lifetime sales reports for up to 1,000 ISBNs (volume & value from 2001 to date) 24/7
  • Search for any ISBN or title – your own or your competitors'
  • Choose two categories and receive Top 50 charts each week for a year

For further information: BOSS and BOSS Plus

BOSS Ireland
In a typical week we will measure over 41,000 different titles, with an average volume of 234,000 units and a value of €2.5 million. The sales data is available by volume and value (Euro), though the RRP listed continues to be Sterling as not all books have a published Euro price on the Nielsen Book database. BOSS Ireland is a simple web-based service that lets you look up lifetime sales by ISBN, title or author, week-by-week to assist your day to day business decisions.

  • Each week we post details of the Top 20 bestselling titles by five key genres (Hardback and Paperback Fiction; Hardback and Paperback Non-Fiction and Children's)

Nielsen BookScan Online Sales Summaries provide the key information your business needs to keep ahead in the increasingly competitive retail book market.

For further information:  BOSS Ireland

Understanding your sales using Nielsen BookScan

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To download information by market click on one of the following links:



* Lifetime sales is for the defined Nielsen BookScan panel of retailers and covers the period from January 2001 to date. Note all figures quoted are for actual customer purchases via this panel of retailers.


Other Publisher Services available within the group:

For BookData services click here.

For BookNet services click here.


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