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Unread 7th February 2017   #1
Pacific
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Do you think the independent new/used (trade-ins accepted) type of bookstores are still good ideas, business-wise? I've been wanting to open one (if the time is ever right and I am brave enough) but want other opinions. Not that I know the entire market, but it seems that e-readers have not stopped people from wanting physical copies of books; and for me personally, I can't stand e-readers.
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Unread 7th February 2017   #2
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I enjoy going to bookstores!
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Unread 7th February 2017   #3
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I love my Kindle
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Unread 8th February 2017   #4
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I love book stores, but sadly over the years have seen many new and used book stores going out of business. With the internet, I don't think libraries are used any where near as much as they used to be either.

Newspapers are dying, and even comics are being printed digitally now. Magazines used to be a popular form of education and entertainment that is rarely seen these days.

I hate to squash anyone's dreams but I would be very hesitant to invest in this.
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Unread 8th February 2017   #5
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Independent bookstores are closing all over. I'm not sure how well the big chains do.
Do you have experience in business and bookstores? If not, you might want to work in one
to see how it goes. Also, anytime you are starting up a business, getting a mentor is a great idea.

Have you considered online sales of books like eBay?
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Unread 8th February 2017   #6
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I buy books on Book Depository and seldom go to bookstores now. If time allows, I will go to an independent bookstore and buy some secondhand books. I really love old books as they feel and smell good... however I don't think it's easy to sustain because online bookstores - convenient, economical, free-shipping!!!
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Unread 8th February 2017   #7
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I do of course recognize the convenience of amazon, one-click and then the book is at my door process has taken over, but I guess my angle is that the shop-type atmosphere is for those looking for the "experience." Sometimes, online shopping is definitely the way to go, but I suppose it depresses me a bit that the concept of the experience is dying. I think bookstores might do well in quaint towns where there is already foot traffic, not sure a bookstore tucked away in some shopping center that requires a car is a good idea. I am thinking stores also have to sell on amazon to supplement their foot-traffic, which I am fine with.
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Unread 8th February 2017   #8
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Go talk to some independent bookstore owners. Work part-time in a bookstore. These are the guys who know the struggles, pitfalls and successes. Odds are they probably work long hours, too.
Again, get a mentor who is in the business before you invest too much time and money.
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Unread 8th February 2017   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pacific View Post
but I guess my angle is that the shop-type atmosphere is for those looking for the "experience."
I know what you mean. I could spend hours in bookstores (and I sometimes do; I'll spend an age in Waterstones browsing, and then buy a couple of books and go for a coffee in their in-store coffee shop and sit on one of their sofas reading, surrounded by books)

I have a Kindle, which I find handier to carry around than a huge book sometimes, but I do prefer a physical book to read in all honesty, and their are certain authors I will specifically track down in store and buy their new releases in hardback.
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Unread 9th February 2017   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pacific View Post
Do you think the independent new/used (trade-ins accepted) type of bookstores are still good ideas, business-wise? I've been wanting to open one (if the time is ever right and I am brave enough) but want other opinions. Not that I know the entire market, but it seems that e-readers have not stopped people from wanting physical copies of books; and for me personally, I can't stand e-readers.
I read somewhere that physical books are making a comeback vs. readers. I have an easier time reading on digital screen because my eyes are screwed up, but I love bookstores. We have two great ones in our area (@cellardweller do you go to Montclair Book Center and/or Watchung Booksellers in Montclair?). The former does deal in used books and is a big maze of a place... I could wander in there for hours although I wonder how much they make on used books. The latter is smaller and a little more upscale, only deals in new books, and has a coffee/sandwich place adjacent.

Annapolis seems like a place that would support such a thing assuming the market is not saturated.

My advice would be:
  • Put it someplace where there is foot traffic especially students
  • Make the space inviting for people to linger.... comfortable seating, fireplace, table games, maybe space flexible enough to allow for events (live music, small group meetings, book groups, NaNoWriMo write-ins, etc.)
  • Either sell or be friendly to coffee, pastries, etc.
  • Join one of the networks of independent booksellers that lets people shop online and fulfill through your store. I do this through Watchung Booksellers mentioned above... they order it and I go there to pick it up, usually within a few days.
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Unread 22nd February 2017   #11
Dan1980
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I could spend hours in a bookstore!
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Unread 24th February 2017   #12
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If you love books you'd love browsing here:

http://www.countryliving.com/remodel...-buenos-aires/

It's regarded by many as the most beautiful bookshop in the world.
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Unread 24th February 2017   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CellarDweller View Post
I enjoy going to bookstores!
I don't think he meant the ones with the booths in the back
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Unread 24th February 2017   #14
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i honestly have to say with a heavy heart that its not a businesses i would want to get into unless its to do with rare books , limited editions - that kind of thing.... You now have huge corporations that are pushing ebooks ... they buy the written work from the writer/publicists and from that one deal they sell it on in digital form for virtual no cost to themselves but rape the profits - why would people like amazon want to go back in time - books will never die as vinyl records haven't but it will be a niche very soon i fear
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