Independent Book Stores Can Survive – Good News for 2012

Perhaps the unfortunate demise of chains like Borders Books has opened the proverbial window of opportunity for independent bookstores to step in to fill the void. One such store, Battenkill Books in Cambridge, New York, should serve as a model for all mom and pop’s looking for a way to adapt and remain relevant in a world torn between traditional paper and digital books.

I first heard of Battenkill Books from the writer Jon Katz, a vocal supporter of independent bookstores and libraries. Mr. Katz frequently mentions Battenkill in his popular blog and actively participates in store events. He’s not shy about requesting that his readers order copies of his books through its website, and as incentive he’s spent countless hours personalizing each book. Sales this past holiday season were phenomenal, and the mother and daughter who run Battenkill plan to sign up other authors for similar promotions.

To be sure, Battenkill has embraced the digital age by offering ebooks alongside the paper variety. This store has found a way to adapt to the changing marketplace, and one can only hope that it enjoys much future success. One doesn’t have to be a big-box chain to offer the same quality product. Doesn’t it feel more satisfying to buy from one’s neighbor than support a corporate headquarters located who-knows-where?

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4 Responses to Independent Book Stores Can Survive – Good News for 2012

  1. DM says:

    Such good news! I do think every business will have to grasp the digital era to survive. Good for this bookstore.

  2. This morning’s edition of my local newspaper contains an article about a coming “cash mob” event, in which a flash mob of shoppers descend upon a local business at a predetermined time to spend at least $10 each on an item in the store. Social media networks serve as word of mouth for these events. Would be nice to see a local bookstore “terrorized” in such a way!

  3. Thedesertrocks says:

    Always love hearing positive stories about bookstores!

  4. Same here. And especially when they showcase local authors, not just those the big publishing houses promote.

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