Public library statistics

Last updated:  31 May 2024

Each year the State Library collects comprehensive statistics from NSW councils about their library services. 

The key indicators of public library use show that they are highly valued by their communities.

In 2022/23 there were:

  • 22.8 million physical visits to NSW public libraries
  • 35.9 million loans of collection items
  • 13.1 million virtual visits to public library websites
  • 9.4 million internet bookings (including wi-fi)
  • 2.5 million ebook loans

Source: NSW Public Library Statistics 2022-23

Annual statistical reports

Public Libraries Statistics is an annual compilation of statistical data highlighting the usage and activities of public libraries in NSW.

Latest report

The 2022-23 report and data tables are available to download below.

 

Previous reports and data tables

Previous statistical reports and data tables are available to download below.

ReportsData tables

Please contact Public Library Services staff for access to earlier statistics.

NSW public library staff can use the Bibliostat Connect database to view historical statistics and additional statistics not included in the annual publication. You can also undertake benchmarking and comparisons with other library services. Passwords are provided to each NSW public library manager. 

Statistical data collection

Annual statistics are submitted online via Bibliostat Collect. Passwords are provided to each NSW public library manager.

Go to Bibliostat Collect

Note: If you have issues accessing this link contact your council IT department and ask them to modify your network security to allow access to collectconnect.baker-taylor.com on TCP/8880

Statistics collected on this form are used to compile the annual Public Library Statistics report. Selected data are also reported to the NSW Local Government Grants Commission, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and the National and State Libraries of Australasia (NSLA) to be used for reports on public libraries and local councils.

NSW public library staff can use the Bibliostat Connect database to view historical statistics and additional statistics not included in the annual publication. You can also undertake benchmarking and comparisons with other library services. Passwords are provided to each NSW public library manager. 

Go to Bibliostat Connect

Instructions

Detailed instructions are available to download below 

Assistance

Please contact the Public Library Services team if you have a question about the statistics or annual data collection.

Statistical sampling periods

Sample survey periods provide library services with the ability to estimate annual information and customer service requests. Collecting and reporting data for this important indicator of use assists in demonstrating the value of public libraries.

NSW public libraries can use the enquiry completion rate (ECR) survey templates and forms to collect statistics for annual library service reporting.  

Download the ECR survey instructions below.

Survey periods

The ECR survey periods are set for seven calendar days, beginning on a Saturday and concluding on a Friday. This period ensures the full spread of library opening hours are included, whatever combination of hours or days a library facility is open to the public.

The survey runs from Monday to Sunday.

ECR survey collection dates - 2024/2025
  • 6 May 2024
  • 5 August 2024
  • 4 November 2024
  • 3 February 2025
  • 5 May 2025
  • 4 August 2025
  • 3 November 2025
ECR forms

These forms were originally developed by the Public Libraries Evaluation Group (PLEG). 

ECR tally sheets