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Borders Forced to Liquidate, Close All Stores

  07/19/11 14:08, by , Categories: General

Link: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303661904576454353768550280.html

Close to 400 Borders stores will start closing up shop this Friday and the rest are to follow, resulting in all Borders stored closed by the end of September.

I always preferred Waldenbooks/Borders over Barnes & Noble. When I tried to think of the reason for that, I couldn’t come up with much. The only bookstore in the town where I grew up was a Waldenbooks. Over the years, their prices always seemed more reasonable than B&N (of course, they were still more expensive than Amazon). Finally, Borders stores somehow seemed a little cozier than B&N stores. It’s possible that the last point may be connected to the first.

I haven’t shopped at Borders in over a year and I know it’s because I bought Molly a Nook. Having that piece of hardware made a connection between us and the B&N brand. Molly wanted to buy books from B&N so that they wouldn’t go out of business and the Nook store would continue to be available.

Though I’m only speaking from my experience, e-readers may be a large part of why Borders failed and B&N didn’t.

Still, fewer physical bookstores in the world saddens me a bit.

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4 comments

Comment from: mike
mike

Borders failed because computer books, among other books, were 30 to 40 percent less online for over a decade and they refused to drop their prices to combat that. Instead of making a sale by matching an online price, the Einstein management decided to take that hardline and refuse. Also, they hardly ever ran sales on computer books. I say computer books because I primarily purchased computer books - but you can swap in any type of book really.

If I can get X book online within 3-5 days with shipping and, in many cases, no tax, then why would I go to Borders? Well, maybe I want that book now. Maybe the Einstein management should have taken a policy that allowed matching of online prices or even GET CLOSE TO online prices. Maybe I would have purchased a few more books at the local store instead of going there to browse the book at the local store and actually place the Amazon order from within the local store using their FREE WIFI.

And that brings up another point, why would you allow people to walk around and read books for free, while drinking coffee (that you had to purchase) anyway? Why would you turn your brick and mortar STORE into a library where you could eat and drink and read everything you wanted to, then get up and leave? Coffee shops dont give out free coffee for your entire visit. Maybe free refills and maybe they even have a limit (if they’re smart). But you had to purchase that first cup of overpriced coffee - no? The entire business model of the brick and mortar bookstore spelled doom for them. People used to go there, buy coffee, take dozens of magazines or books or whatnot to the coffee shop and read for hours, then leave everything on the table and go home.

If they required that you purchase that book, they might not have been out of business. Maybe they wouldnt be selling much coffee but personally, I dont go there (or anywhere) for coffee as I can make it at home for a LOT LESS than getting goughed at the coffee shop - which is a completely different, although related, story.

07/25/11 @ 10:14
Comment from: mike
mike

OH, and by the way…. to prove that there is a fool born every minute - I went to my local borders to witness the frenzy of buying “discounted” books by people who, I dont know where their brains are.. There were NO DEALS, as usual, with this “clearance sale” as there have not been in the past with Circuit City or Linen and Things, etc, etc. Its the same clearance company, the same signage, the same boost-the-price and slap a 40% off sticker on it, deal. Ugh. I had to laugh at the 40 people long line as I walked right out.

And, by the way, the computer books were ONLY 20% off – which means I could still order a book from Amazon at 35% off and even with shipping, have it delivered to my front door cheaper than waiting on that long line of fools all thinking they’re getting a deal. Oh well.

07/25/11 @ 10:19
Comment from:
Dustin

Yeah, my wife and I went to Borders on Saturday. Huge sign out front said “Everything up to 40% off!” The place was packed.

Almost all of the fiction books were only 10% off. Graphic novels were 20% off.

I pulled out my smartphone and did some price comparisons. Every item I was interested in was cheaper on Amazon.

07/25/11 @ 10:26
Comment from:
Alison

I am weeding books right now at the library. People’s personal habits are DISGUSTING. I say buy at Amazon. If you’re not sure about it, check it out at the library, and then buy it on Amazon if you can’t live w/out it.

07/31/11 @ 07:43


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