I don’t know about you, WG2E-Land Peeps, but I don’t have a good gut feeling about the future of Barnes and Noble brick and mortar stores. They could end up with the same fate as Borders.
Following an article in the Wall Street Journal (which is subscription only…ugh!) early last week, things ain’t lookin’ too good.
Digital Book World (DBW) is doing a great job covering it and analyzing it. So, here are the links you’ll want to check out:
Barnes & Noble Worries Spread (read all of the extra articles attached to this too, a few of which I’ve linked to below)
And, it’s not just their brick and mortar stores that are in trouble. Their Nook division, even with Microsoft’s money, isn’t doing great either. Sales of their new Nook tablet didn’t meet expectations during the holiday season.
Me personally, my Nook sales are waaaayyy down from what they were last year at this point. For example, I did around $8,000 (4400 units) there last December (2011) compared to $800 (835 units) this year. That said, I’m still making between $30 and $50 per day on Nook right now which still makes it a decent market. ***Note: I did have a B&N Top 10 product last year at this time though, with my first Ebook Boxed Set, when Ebook Boxed Sets were brand new. That wasn’t the case this year.
So, what does all of this mean for Indie Epublished Authors? Does Discoverability via a brick and mortar store even matter for us? Some studies suggest it does, although there are just as many examples saying it doesn’t matter at all, especially if you’re Epublished-Only, not both Print (with distribution to B&N) and Epublished.
Here’s one take on it, recorded at DBW 2013:
What is perhaps going to change regardless of how you’re published is the overall reading experience and how readers find us. In other words, how will readers find/discover books and authors in the very near future, with and/or without any major brick and mortar chain like Barnes & Noble?
I just don’t think brick and mortar stores are in our future at all. Even with highly-illustrated books as in the travel and childrens’ genres, with tablets, there’s simply no need for glossy paper.
My gut tells me the future for authors will be found in two places – Ereaders/Tablets and The Library. (Yep, I’m betting if you want the paper/print book experience, you’ll go to your local public library for that.)
What do y’all think?
The Best of Discoverability Wishes — D. D. Scott
P.S. I also did a post on this today on our sister site, The RG2E (The Reader’s Guide to Epublishing), so head on over and see what readers have to say about this too.
D. D. Scott is an Amazon and Barnes and Noble Top 100 Bestselling Romantic Comedy and Humorous Mystery Author. She’s also a Writer’s Go-To-Gal for Muse Therapy and Indie Epublishing, the Co-Founder of The WG2E- The Writer’s Guide to E-Publishing, and the Founder of The RG2E – The Reader’s Guide to E-publishing. You can get all the scoop on her, her books, her Online Classes and Live Workshops, plus juicy tidbits too from her new cyber home…D. D. Scott-ville.