Comic Book Sales Increase in 2014

Amazing Spiderman 1 - H 2015
<p>Amazing Spiderman 1 - H 2015</p>   |   Humberto Ramos/Marvel Entertainment
Collected editions were the fastest growing format, while digital sales growth slowed in comparison to previous years.

Ahead of next week's San Diego Comic-Con, a new report prepared by industry analysts suggests that the comic and graphic novel market is continuing to grow, with sales hitting a 20-year high in 2014.

The estimate, prepared by ICv2's Milton Griepp and Comichron's John Jackson Miller, estimates total comic and graphic novel sales in North America to have grown 7 percent last year, reaching $935 million for the 12-month period. "It's a very exciting time in the comics business," Griepp said in a statement accompanying the release of the figures.

Growth was visible in every aspect of the market but one (Newsstand sales fell, likely down to Marvel's abandonment of that market), with the greatest amount of growth being seen in the bookstore market with graphic novel and collected edition sales up 16 percent, from $245 million to $285 million, compared with 2013. Digital sales continued to grow, albeit at a significantly slower rate than in 2013; 11 percent, against 29 percent the year before.

Print sales in the comic book specialty direct market rose 7 percent for the year, with growth of collected editions and graphic novels again outstripping those of single issues, which only grew 4 percent year-on-year. (The best-selling single issue of the year was Marvel's Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 3 No. 1.)