Booksellers are not on the list of businesses authorized to open during confinement. To counter Amazon, booksellers are ready to be creative again.
With the return of confinement at least until December 1, libraries, considered as “non-essential businesses”, must lower the curtain again. They find themselves subject to competition from Amazon and other online retail giants. Last spring, booksellers had succeeded in reinventing themselves. With this new delicate period for them, they want to believe that the game is not over.
The first confinement had proved it : reading is not just a hobby. “I would even say that it is indeed vital for some people, considers Marie Zannini, from the theater bookstore in Bourg-en-Bresse. “We will miss each other with our clients because we have sometimes weekly appointments. The price of the book is unique so you have to take advantage of it, you have to make your booksellers work”, she adds.
Since the deconfinement of 11 May, frequentation in bookstores has only increased. “I never imagined for a second that customers come back to bookstores so quickly, says Xavier Mon, co-manager of the boutique like a novel in the Marais district, in Paris. It was a wonderful surprise. It's up to us to invent or reinvent another way of working. We're all on the Internet. We don't have the same shooting power as a company like Amazon, but we are present”, he adds.
The “click and collect” set up five months ago worked fine, just like the lalibrairie.com site, which allows you to order and reserve your book at an independent bookstore. “We still remain an SME on a human scale”, says Georges-Marc Habib, bookseller in Paris and president of Générale Librest.
We have the experience of the first confinement. We should be able to meet the demand of our customers.
“We realize that local commerce still has an essential value in today's world”, notes the bookseller. As they stop at the dawn of Christmas time, most important to them, booksellers today say they need everyone's support.
Bookstores closed during confinement : “How can we neglect the book so much ?”, s’indigne Daniel Picouly
World news – FR – Confinement : booksellers will organize themselves to face Amazon again