Rumours of the demise of the physical book are greatly exaggerated. We know this because our customers tell us all the time that books sell more than they ever could have predicted. People still love to buy books.

But when books don’t perform as well as you expect, don’t panic. Here are three things to review before you give up:

1. Does the way you display your books show them off?

Books displayed on a round table in a garden centre

Resist the temptation to place rows of books spine-out on bookshelves. Yes, this approach may have worked for centuries for bookshops and libraries, but people visit those locations purely to browse books. Most of the retailers we work with sell a variety of products, alongside books, so customers are not always shopping with book-buying in mind. Therefore, books need to stand out.

We take pride in offering books with impactful covers that can really pop in visual merchandising. Help these books shine by displaying them face-out and integrated with other products. Beautifully designed books can inspire an impulsive add-on purchase when positioned thoughtfully throughout your space.

2. Is your range the right size?

Cookbooks on a shelf in a retail setting

It might sound counter-intuitive but sometimes we advise our customers to slim down their book range to maximise sales. Say goodbye to the titles that are slower to shift. They are taking up the space of something that could sell better.

Having fewer titles will provide you with more opportunities to display them creatively. Plus, your customers will thank you. Sometimes too much choice can be a barrier towards making a purchase.

3. Are you selecting the right titles?


When selecting books for the first time, it may be tempting to stick with those well-known bestsellers that are splashed all over the media. However, the more famous a book, the more likely someone will head online to buy the cheapest version available. We encourage our customers to select books that complement their retail themes and product ranges and appeal directly to target consumers. We have a great variety of titles across both popular themes and niche topics to inspire you. We also have an overview of new releases and can introduce you to fresh titles on a regular basis. 

Do you need help?

If you’d like to work with a book supplier who can help you succeed, get in touch or open up a trade account today.

Further inspiration

How to boost book sales online

Sales-boosting merchandising tips for small spaces


Images one and two are supplied by our customers Okells and Teals.