Situation: John Is The Owner Of A Traditional Bookstore Facing Declining Sales In Recent Years

Situation: John is the owner of a traditional bookstore facing declining sales in recent years due to online competitors. He believes that his personal customer service and curated selection can set him apart.

Question: How can John’s understanding of marketing concepts help him revitalize his business and attract customers in this digital age?

Expert Answer

This solution was written by a subject matter expert. It’s designed to help students like you learn core concepts.


Concerning John’s present situation regarding his sales, let’s see how John’s understanding of marketing concepts help him revitalize his business and attract customers in this digital age:


There are many ways in which Brick-and-mortars can thrive in digital world. He can improve his sales and revitalize his business in the following way:

Advertising through social media: John can advertise about his store through various social media, in which he can highlight the features of his story and its legacy.

With sponsorship for various book related events: He can increase his sales through sponsorship for various book fairs. Increasing the brand value make the customer walk through all the way to the store.

Adding online options to the retail store: He can showcase all of his stock both online and offline and make the reach improve.

Partnering with existing providers: Partnering with the online companies which manage everything from online posting to payment processing to pickup of the books from the book store to the delivery to the customers.

Understand Omnichannel: This means John has to be online, in the physical store and on the phone with the customers.

Sell where people are buying : Rechanneling the efforts where are the sales are be it online or in physical store with increasing sales.

Sale some books exclusively in store: As John has curated selection, he can sell few high demand books exclusively in store this will encourage customers to visit his store.

Sell some books exclusively online: This will keep the exclusivity and encourages people to visit your store for other books which are not available at ecommerce website.

Improve customer service : Repeated sales can be made with low cost purchases. John should also sell books at comparatively low cost with less margin.

Engage influencers: John should select apt influencers and involve them in his promotional activities to increase sales.

As John has unique set of books in his store and personal customer services. It helps him a lot in improving his sales in this digital age. Only thing is to use them in such a way that reaches the digital age customers.


E-commerce stores like Amazon and eBay continue to prove that physical locations are optimal for modern business.

Walmart is the world’s biggest Brick and mortar retailer. The band is catching up with Amazon and now ranks the third largest online store in the world.

John can revitalize his business and attract customers in this digital age with his understanding of marketing concepts. He can follow the various methods which we have discussed in step 1 of the answer. The only thing John has to understand is to change with the time. Adaptability is important for every business to align with the market changes. There will be always an opportunity for quality and uniqueness which John possess.