Harris advises publishers to get out of distribution and into their own branded bookstores.

What Does the Bookshop of the Future Look Like to You?

In Discussion by Edward Nawotka

By Edward Nawotka, Editor-in-chief

Foyles bookshop in London has solicited advice from interested individuals who want to contribute to the creation of the bookshop of the future. Numerous publishing professionals offered Publishing Perspectives their insights in today’s feature story.

What about you? How do you envision the bookshop of the future?

Does it have a large or small footprint? Offer a broad range of titles? Or is it more specialized and tightly curated? Should it offer a branded ereader? Are community events and the space to host gatherings important to you? Would you take advantage of having an Espresso Book Machine on site? What about foreign language books? Or sidelines? How about same-day delivery for website orders within a particular range?

Everyone’s answer will be different and much of that will depend on the type of community in which they live.

It might also be interesting to reflect on the fact that Borders had re-envisioned its own ‘bookstore of the future’ back in 2008 — and it offered some very intriguing and forward-thinking concepts. Unfortunately, the company’s troubles compounded by the economic crisis of 2009 — prevented the company from ever implementing its plans. Had they been able to re-invent themselves, who knows what the bookselling landscape might look like today.

Let us know what you think in the comments below.

About the Author

Edward Nawotka

Edward Nawotka is the Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. A former foreign correspondent, he has covered the book business exclusively since 2000, serving as daily news editor for Publishers Weekly and columnist for Bloomberg News.