We often wonder what writer/industry analyst John Jackson Miller does for fun. Is it really crunching sales charts? Looking at his extensive 2012 Comic Book Sales Figures round-up, it doesn’t seem to be anything else. The above link will give you his estimates of the top 100 comics and graphic novels for 2012. Here’s his analysis of these charts. Including this interesting metric:
Marvel maintained its top publisher spot in both inits and dollars for December, as Diamond released preliminary charts for last month. The Marvel Now books made up 6 out of the top 10 comics, topped by the final issue of Amazing Spiderman. DC’s Batman titles had a strong showing, however.
Over in graphic novels, Image pretty much crushed it, not just with The Walking Dead but strong showings for Saga, Chew and Fatale as well, making for one of its strongest monthly shares in a while.
By Paul Mellerick
For a rare change we get the number one book this month, as Walking Dead #100 breaks records all over the place. Saga and Buffy are still doing decent numbers, while the third Valiant relaunch, Bloodshot does very well too. Elsewhere, Adventure Time and the Trek / Who crossover continue to punch above their weight, while new licensed Transformers and Crow titles launch strongly for IDW.
145 indie books charted this month, up on last month’s 135. The bottom book sold 4,187, up on last month’s 3,302. They sold approximately 1,717,229, up on last month’s 1,344,491, the difference being almost entirely made up of Walking Dead #100. Average sales are 11,842 per book, also up on last month’s 9,959, but without Walking Dead it would have been 9,448. As usual, UK and European sales from Diamond UK are not reported in this chart.
Out of the 145 books, 27 went up in sales, a little less th
The Walking Dead #100 led the charts in July, even as DC just barely edged out Marvel in both dollars and units—a sign that Marvel NOW can’t come soon enough perhaps. BATMAN: EARTH ONE led the graphic novel charts, topping a strong month for DC.
Sales were generally flat from June, although remain much higher year to year. Comics were down a tad while GNs declined in dollars but gained in units.
Diamond has released their preliminary information on May’s sales charts, and Marvel is back in units and dollars—both hard won victories—while AVX topped the singles chart and the New 52 trades topped the books charts quite handily.
Comics sales are up 40% from May 2011 —so if you want to know if the New 52 was a sales success, there’s you answer right there.
Marvel bashed its way back to the top in March, winning both dollars and units and the top book with AvX #1. After getting shut out of the top 10 books for the last few months, they had three books, including the AvX 0 issues and AVENGERS ASSEMBLE #1.
AvX #1 is invoiced for March although it only went on sale yesterday, in April, because it shipped to retailers a week early.
Comparative charts showed March 2012 pretty flat with 2011, with only graphic novel sales up appreciably — and that’s because of a surge in WALKING DEAD VOLUME 1 sales. This perrennial led the GN chart yet again, buoyed by the TV show no doubt.
Over the weekend, I did a rough estimate of Diamond Top 100 sales chart. Good ‘ole Walking Dead turns out to have sold 32,361 in the “official” estimates vs. the 31,596 from January I used for the estimate. That +2.4%, which is just barely outside standard deviation, so it looks like the initial estimates were close again.
Walking Dead and Buffy top the chart again, but the debuts of Lord of the Jungle, Fatale and Danger Girl: Revolver push the Turtles down to sixth. Elsewhere there are two new Transformers ongoings, a few more new Image books, and the end of several titles.
136 indie books charted this month, 10 up on last month and again less Marvel or DC books charting this month. The bottom book sold 2,606, half of what it was 2 months ago. In total those books sold approximately 1,052,459 down from last month’s 1,067,927 with more titles. That’s the second month in a row that’. Average sales are 7,739 per book, well down from last month’s 8,475. As usual, UK and European sales from Diamond UK are not reported in this chart.
This month Image were again the number three publisher, with 5.48% dollar share and a 4.83 market share, followed by Dark Horse with 4.89% dollar share and 3.55% market share, IDW with a 4.35% dollar share and a 3.78% market share, Dynamite with a 3.46% dollar share and a 3.66% market share, Boom with 1.66% dollar share and 1.35% market share and Eaglemoss with 1.47% dollar and 0.30% market share. IDW, Dynamite & Boom are up for the month, everyone else is down.
Diamond’s initial December figures are out, and Marvel eked out a 1 point lead over DC in dollars and a 2 point lead in units in December — but they did it the hard way with a ground war fought one ship week at a time — DC basically sat out the fifth week and Marvel went for it. Of course they are also double shipping and so on. This is the war of the trenches.
Elsewhere, comics were up a tetch for the year, with GNs down 5% in dollars. And GNs have just had a massive slide — down 10%in units for the year. This seems to be one of the underreported sales stories of the year for us. In the department of no surprise, JL was the best selling comic and WALKING DEAD the best selling GN.
Comics Alliance has run this amazing infographic by Tim Leong, based on the year’s NY Times graphic novel bestsellers. This is a topic ripe for study since it has contained many many surprises — like appearances by DAVID B. on the list? Awesome sauce.
What is not a surprise is that WALKING DEAD and SCOTT PILGRIM have dominated the charts for most of 18 months. The future of comics is masterful, multi-volume media tie-ins that speak to contemporary life, it seems.
Buffy continues in the top spot, while a double-shipping Walking Dead takes second and third places. Turtles creeps back up to fourth, and Star Trek/ Legion of Superheroes gets off to a very promising start. Further down, Orchid benefits from a rock star contributor, Garth Ennis & John Byrne launch new titles and a remarkable success story finishes off the month.
This month everyone wants to know how DC’s New 52 has affected the sales of everyone else’s books. It’s a little too early to tell, the re-charting DC books have pushed a lot of indies off the charts, but while the indie publishers have a lot less titles charting this month, their market and dollar share have only dropped a little, suggesting that sales are up overall. The next three months will show the effects far more clearly.
Only 87 indie books charted this month, down from last month’s high of 127 and again the number 87 book sold around the same as the number 87 book last month. The bottom book sold 5,167 compared to last month’s 3,341. In total those books sold approximately 921,878, well down on last month’s 1,053,116. That said, last month the average sales were 8,292 per book, this month it’s 10,596. As usual, UK and European sales from Diamond UK are not reported in this chart.
A look over the sales seem to suggest that the better-selling books have weathered okay, but a lot of books further down the charts have suffered serious drops, with retailers maybe choosing to spend their re-stock money on DC books rather than indies.
This month Image were the number three publisher, with 4.49% dollar share and a 3.98 market share thanks to two issues of
Writer Ivan Brandon gives voice to the frequently-stated among creators idea that sales charts are a dangerous thing for the business, and may actually help put people out of work. He was most upset by the recent iFanboy piece that looked at all the Marvel books that seemed to be below the line that spelled cancellation:
Buffy returns in the top spot, although with sales far down on the beginning of the last Season, with Angel in third place. Sandwiched in between is Game of Thrones’ debut issue, while TMNT drops to fourth place after being last month’s best-selling indie. Further down the charts IDW’s other new licensed ongoing titles seem to be benefiting from the increased awareness the new DC books seem to be bringing, while many of Dynamite’s licenses seem to be tanking, the aforementioned Game of Thrones apart.
There were 127 indie books in the chart this month, well up on last month’s 103. The 103 book this month sold almost exactly what the 103 book last month sold, so this was certainly due to less Marvel and DC books released this month rather than stronger Indie sales. In fact those 103 books sold almost 35,000 less copies than last month, although top 300 indie sales are 1,053,116, almost 55,000 up on August. The bottom book sold 3,341 compared to last month’s 4,514. As usual, UK and European sales from Diamond UK are not reported in this chart.
This month Dark Horse were the number three publisher, with 4.76% dollar share and a 3.51 market share, followed by IDW with 4.13% dollar share and 3.10% market share, Image with a 4.08% dollar share and a 3.29% market share, Dynamite with a 3.07% dollar share and a 3.02% market share, and Boom with 1.39% dollar and 0.94% market share. That’s the same order as last month, although all but Dynamite have reduced figures.