Libraries & Numbers

I love examining the statistics associated with library materials at the end of each calendar year. And, in libraries, there are so many numbers: which titles were checked out the most; what collections have fallen out of popularity; what subjects have a growing interest. (Who knew macramé, canning and paper folding were going to make a comeback?)

Using these numbers we can build collections that better meet library patrons’ needs and desires. For example, if our language learning materials in print were barely checked out in 2018 and our digital ones were always checked out we know that we need to purchase more digital materials.

Take a look, see what you think. If there’s something in the lists below you haven’t heard about, stop by the reference desk. We’d love to add statistics to 2019.

Below are some actual numbers:

Top circulating adult books in 2018 for Watertown patrons:

  1. Refuge by Nayeri (403)
  2. Little Fires Everywhere by Ng (262)
  3. The Woman in the Window by Finn (156)
  4. Manhattan Beach by Egan (139)
  5. A Gentleman in Moscow by Towles (126)
  6. The Great Alone by Hannah (123)
  7. Fire and Fury by Wolff (121)
  8. Origin by Brown (112)
  9. An American Marriage by Jones (110)
  10. Sing, Unburied Sing by Ward (97)

Current books with the most Watertown holds:

(This is an interesting one because it shows how many holds are on a title in the whole network and then how many of those are specifically for Watertown patrons. One reason we have so few holds on popular titles is that we try hard to purchase additional copies so patrons don’t have to wait too long.)

  1. Becoming by Obama 1,529 system holds/46 Watertown
  2. Educated by Westover 1,022 system holds/33 Watertown
  3. Nine Perfect Strangers by Moriarty 993 system holds/22 Watertown
  4. Kingdom of the Blind by Penny 583 system holds/21 Watertown
  5. Unsheltered by Kingsolver 579 system holds/17 Watertown
  6. The Witch Elm by French 533 system holds/16 Watertown
  7. Past Tense by Child 385 system holds/11 Watertown
  8. White Fragility by DiAngelo 66 system holds/11 Watertown
  9. Ottolenghi Simple by Ottolenghi 265 system holds/11 Watertown
  10. One Day in December by Silver 187 system holds/9 Watertown

Top music albums checkouts on hoopla:

  1. Greatest Showman
  2. Hamilton
  3. Reputation –Taylor Swift
  4. Best of 2017
  5. Here we Come –PJ Masks
  6. Moana
  7. WOW Hits 2015
  8. Ultimate Worship: Hillsong
  9. What Makes You Country –Luke Bryan
  10. Dear Evan Hansen

Top Lynda.com Courses:

  1. Excel 2016 Essential Training
  2. WordPress Essential Training
  3. Programming Foundations: Fundamentals
  4. Project Management Foundations
  5. How to use Lynda.com
  6. Excel 2013 Essential Training
  7. Learning Python
  8. Photography: First Steps
  9. Time Management Fundamentals
  10. HTML Essential Training

– By Aimee, WFPL Reference Librarian

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