Subject:   I agree, in theory, but...
Date:   2003-12-31 01:21:00
From:   jwenting
Response to: I agree, in theory, but...

What is the survival of the bookstore worth to you?

I've had long talks about the price differences with store owners and they fully admit they can't compete to the larger online stores.
They DO see the problems but are powerless to do anything about it.
For example, one item I could buy online for 7 each and I use 100 a year of would cost the store near where I live and where I buy most relevant equipment 10 each from the importer.
And it's not just that item. Other things are similar. At one point I asked for a quote on a 1500 piece of equipment (online price) and they told me they would have to charge me 2500 to break even on the sale.

Calculate in the higher cost the small retailers have for real estate, stock, staff (their staff will be higher trained than the highschool dropouts in the warehouse at Amazon who know only how to most economically build packages), etc. and they simply cannot compete.

Therefore I give local stores (especially the small independents) some 25% on the lowest online price (including shipping cost) I can find. Only if they can't beat that (or can offer a competing item for that cost that serves my purpose just as well) do I go online.