Are e-Readers Just a Fad?

Closing Too Soon  I just found a used bookstore for sale via the internet.  In the listing, the current owner writes, “Looking for a new owner who knows people read something other than the Kindle.” I’ve seen a few bookstores liquidating inventory, listing their store for sale on eBay, and simply closing up shop.  My immediate thought […]Read More

What’s Happening to Teen Literature?

  Has anyone else noticed the incredible push toward publishing books geared toward 12+? A number of major fiction authors have crossed over into teen writing (e.g. John Grisham, James Patterson). Does anyone know why this is happening? I can only assume that the big bucks earned from the likes of Harry Potter, Twilight, and […]Read More

Is Free Help in the Bookshop Wise?

After church this past Sunday, a 15-year-old girl came to me and asked, “Do you allow free help in your stores?” I told her, “I’ll think about it.” Consequently, it made me think about a number of times I’ve been asked that same question in the past. Sometimes, you don’t know what you’re getting yourself […]Read More

Used Bookstore Franchising

  In a previous article called, “Can You Franchise the Used Book Business?” I wrote the following: “I do not plan on ever franchising. I simply do not want to give the branded name of my store to someone else.” Well, almost exactly 3 years later, I’m now the CEO of Gottwals Franchising, Inc. which […]Read More

What's Your Favorite Bookshop Website?

Shane Gottwals www.gottwalsbooks.com A Tour of Bookstore Websites I spent two days last week looking at 87 different bookstore websites. After doing all that, I came to a couple of conclusions: 1. my eyes hurt and 2. bookstores do a poor job with their websites. Obviously, most of us don’t have the funds to hire […]Read More

What Makes a Bookshop Visually Stand Out?

Shane Gottwals www.gottwalsbooks.com As I’ve written many times before, Gottwals Books has experienced change after change after change.  We opened our fourth store two weeks ago, and we are now in the process of expanding our first location.  We began in Warner Robins, GA with 1500 square feet and little clue about how to operate […]Read More

A Week in the Life of a Multiple Location Bookshop

Shane Gottwals www.gottwalsbooks.com Gottwals Books, as of this coming Friday, is a 4-store operation. This would be adventuresome enough if all the stores were within a close proximity, but our newest location in North Carolina is seven hours away. In the past four weeks, here is my typical schedule: Sunday Church, family, and rest. Monday […]Read More

Open a Used Bookstore!

Shane Gottwals www.gottwalsbooks.com Want to open a bookstore? Don’t want it to fail? I’ll assume both of these are affirmatives since you have come to The Bookshop Blog. In the business world, there are few ways to “ensure” (not quite the right word… you never have sureties in retail) success. The biggest way is to […]Read More