(CEO Heather Reisman’s digital focus) is in stark contrast to book retailers in other English-language markets where digital, be it online print sales or ebooks, is something best kept at arms’ length, where acknowledged at all.
Canada’s Indigo bookstore, or as it likes to call itself “leading book and lifestyle retailer”, saw a 27% rise in revenue in its Q1 results, just announced, but that should be seen in the context of a CAD 31.6 million loss in the same period 2020, leaving the company still struggling with a CAD21.9 million deficit.
But optimism abounds as Canada’s economy emerges from one of the harshest global lockdowns with online sales helping carry Indigo through the worst of the lockdown period, and an unexpected boost coming from TikTok, the video-based social media site that has been credited with boosting sales of books pretty much everywhere.
In addition to re-openings, Indigo credited a surge in sales to younger customers fueled by book marketing on TikTok, which prompted sales of backlist titles, an increase in capacity for click-and-collect facilities at stores, as well as a boost in sales of the chain’s proprietary line of sidelines.
Indigo is no stranger to digital, having early on partnered with Kobo to sell digital books, and placing strong emphasis on its website to generate online sales alongside the sales from its bricks & mortar stores empire.
Craig Louden, CFO and executive v-p of supply chain at Indigo stated that online sales were,
a path to growth (and) well beyond historic levels.
New, younger customers come to the online channel and (we) expect them to stay there.
Looking at the bigger picture, CEO Heather Reisman said,
This protracted pandemic has changed the consumer. What we are seeing is an evolution of the customers (and sales channels). Right now we are focusing all our attention on digital investment.
The statement is in stark contrast to retailers in other English-language markets where digital, be it online print sales or ebooks, is something best kept at arms’ length, where acknowledged at all.
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