The Time Magazine has an article on 'Evil of Showrooming' (link). The concern is that people browse a bookstore, and later buy at Amazon (in our case / my case Flipkart.com).
There was a report in Times of India recently the book sales dipped signficantly in the recent times. (link)
Trends are changing. Here are something to take note of:
a) The bookshops like Crossword, Landmark etc in Bangalore do not really have a good collection of books. They sell much hyped and latest 'best sellers'
b) Like Brand Factory, they are also into Buy 1 Get 1, or throughout the year Sales Festival.
c) I recently searched in 3 or 4 bookshops including Crossword, and Landmark some best books on Brains and Neuroscience. They had them on their computers listed with zero inventory.
d) These book stores have not done to contain the local piracy
e) These book stores added eateries as additional attraction
f) My contact in Reliance Time Out was concerned that he does not get intentional buyers. People who walk into Reliance's electronic showroom, visit the 2nd floor bookstore to buy some stationery and cosmetics.
g) People have enough access to these books thanks to Just Books and other library formats.
In my opinion,
- These book stores should sell best of books, rare collections. They should organize events, strategies to encourage reading more. They should encourage concepts to build home library. You cannot just afford to remain a bookshop. The bookshop owner should build relationship with the buyer. I have not seen any intellectual book seller in any of the bookshops talking passionately to his customers.
Till then, evil of showrooming cannot be contained.
PS: I also would like to add, I regularly buy good books from bookstores despite online offers.