Wired has more info on Image’s big digital news today including charts and graphics. Basically, Image publisher Eric Stephenson isn’t afraid of no pirates since, as we’ve seen digital has been additive, not killing print sales but sending them up industry-wide.
“Over the last several years, we’ve learned the answer to the big question, and guess what: Digital comics have not destroyed the industry. Digital has shown tremendous growth, but we’ve also seen growth in the direct market and the book market,” said Richards. “If you look at other publishers, they’re seeing the same thing.”
Image has the statistics to back it up — and even more surprising in an industry where publishers have been notoriously cagey about providing data about digital sales, actually shared them. Although the publisher only started selling digital comics in 2009, digital sales now make up more than 11 percent of the company’s overall revenue, and is currently projecting sales of 15 percent by the end of 2013. Image’s best-selling comic, The Walking Dead, sees 22 percent of its sales in digital. And when measured solely against print comics sold in the direct market at comic book stores, digital makes up 27 percent of revenue.
Makes you wonder about Mark Millar’s stated “stand with retailers” not to go digital for six months.
Although there were some early malfunctions with the Image store that seemed to be adding sales tax, and the activation emails don’t actually activate, it took us about 45 seconds to sign up for the Image digital site. Our attempt to buy SCATTERLANDS was thwarted by the fact that they don’t yet take PayPal or Google Wallet. but it’s only opening day….give it some time.