Even In the Digital Age, Brick-And-Mortar Bookstores Are Thriving

Print may not be dead yet: independent booksellers are seeing a bump in sales.

By Hady MawajdehFebruary 17, 2016 12:34 pm,

It feels like the obituary for print media has been written so many times. But even as tablets and e-readers became all the rage, people were still buying newspapers and books. Now, it looks like what was once old is new again, because for the first time in nearly a decade, bookstore sales have gone up.

There was a 2.5 percent increase in sales from 2014 to 2015 – about a $800 million bump. Valerie Koehler, owner of Houston’s Blue Willow Bookshop, says that indie booksellers have seen an increase in traffic and sales recently.

“Most of the indie bookstores saw an increase,” she says. “More bookstores are opening every year. I’m not sure that we’ll see numbers like 2005, but I think we will continue to see the growth of our channel.”

What you’ll hear in this segment:

– How large the gap between previous sales levels were compared to today
– Popular trends that are driving this uptick
– The outlook for brick-and-mortar bookstores, including indie bookstores