Friday, December 17, 2010

A Slight Change to Store Hours in January/Wrapping up the Senior Book Fairs

We'll have more signage and will be generally getting the word out, but after January 1st, we'll be reverting to our original opening time of 10 AM. I've talked to a number of other bookstores, and this is not an unusual opening time. You'd think we might get more crossover traffic with the Starbucks next door, but in the morning, those folks are hardcore drinkers.

And there are not enough businesses around us driving traffic at that hour. Our destination business simply starts later in the day.

It looked like most of our 9-10 sales could be moved until after we open. It will give Jason and Amie a little more time to get things done off the floor, give us more overlap time in the afternoon for booksellers to similarly work on projects, and will make evening breaks easier to work out. As it was, we were shortest of help during some of our busiest times.

So our new hours are
Monday-Saturday, 10 AM-9 PM
Sunday, 10 AM-6 PM

There are a lot of places we need to update this, and I'm worried we'll miss some. And we'll continue to be able to help folks before 10 AM by appointment.


Not that this isn't vital to communicate, but I certainly need something more interesting than that for the blog. Yesterday I finished our three senior housing bookfairs. I had so much fun (and did enough business) at Eastcastle, to set up a return, and offered the service to St. John's and the Milwaukee Catholic Home as well. Each store attracted some Boswell fans, who in turn helped spread the word.

It was hard to predict what would sell at each fair. In addition to books, sometimes boxed holiday cards went, but at another fair (where they sell cards in their in-center boutique), I had a nice sale in jigsaw puzzles. I heard a little about ebook readers, but also sold some large print. One fair had a lot of talk about Freedom, while at the other two, not so much.

One of my Freedom sales was a classic inadvertent third-party rec, meaning you talk about the book to one person, and another person nearby takes the recommendation. It happened again in the store, while I was talking up Louise Penny. I sold a Still Life to one customer and a Bury Your Dead (which, alas, I sometimes call Bury the Dead) to another. Collateral damage, but in a good way.

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