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Old 01-08-2018, 06:33 PM   #61
binaryhermit
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I skimmed the entire thread... this is surprising how? I'd say that Amazon's eating most of the retail industry's bread and butter so strongly that significant portions of it are facing questions about their long term survival. And the retail book industry, and to a certain extent, the "big 5" (or however many blobs their mergers and acquisitions activity has caused them to congeal into) publishers are having that issue.
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Old 01-08-2018, 09:20 PM   #62
DuckieTigger
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Originally Posted by binaryhermit View Post
I skimmed the entire thread... this is surprising how? I'd say that Amazon's eating most of the retail industry's bread and butter so strongly that significant portions of it are facing questions about their long term survival. And the retail book industry, and to a certain extent, the "big 5" (or however many blobs their mergers and acquisitions activity has caused them to congeal into) publishers are having that issue.
Aehm, no. If B&N goes under completely it would create opportunity for independent book stores. Amazon and independent book stores can coexist. B&N and Amazon? They do the same thing, except Amazon does it more cost efficient.
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Old 01-08-2018, 11:11 PM   #63
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Aehm, no. If B&N goes under completely it would create opportunity for independent book stores. Amazon and independent book stores can coexist. B&N and Amazon? They do the same thing, except Amazon does it more cost efficient.
Interesting point.
I'd disagree only slightly.

Successful independents succeed by tailoring their selection to local interests and not trying to be all things to all people. If they manage to meet their specific customer needs immediacy will mostly offset Amazon's price advantages.

Amazon and B&N do try to be all things to all people but Amazon comes closest because they are much closer to being customer focused than B&N, which is too dependent on BPH front table payola to be truly customer focused.
Over in the UK Waterstones found that divorcing themselves from publisher promotional money was a big net plus because it allowed store managers to, ahem, manage their inventory and displays, tailoring them to local customer interests.

At this point it is questionable if B&N can do without payola but actively promoting the payola books, typically fast moving recent release titles, undercuts the sales potential of the midlist and backlist titles that occupy the bulk of their shelf space.

In that respect the B&N business model is crippled by their own practices more than Amazon competition. They fill their expensive shelf space with books they then backburner in favor of the handful of front table titles, turning most of their shelf space into fallow inventory.
If they are so committed to the payola titles they would be better served by ditching the slow moving books and downsizing the stores proportionally.
The result would look a lot like the old B. DALTON stores. Or the Hudson airport newsstand chain which is nice and profitable.

It's a matter of focus.
Successful independents have it.
Amazon, Costco, and Hudson have it.
B&N doesn't.
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