Leading academic bookseller Blackwell’s has invested in the future of University bookselling, announcing the opening of two new campus shops, each of which is to act as a pilot for a new concept of academic bookshop.
The entire look and feel of a traditional academic bookshop has been renewed and modernised, with a focus on creating a retail environment students are comfortable shopping within. The new shop spaces feature digital displays, interactive touchscreens and a contemporary retail design.
The new shop format brings together both physical and eBooks, giving students the choice on how they study. eBooks can be browsed on Blackwell’s Learning Platform through interactive instore screens and purchased at the till, enabling students to experience the benefits of owning and using digital textbooks. Blackwell’s Learning, is a bespoke academic eReading platform, specifically designed for study and is supported with free to download Apple and Android apps. It enables students and lecturers to access content across laptops, tablets and smartphones. It provides full educational functionality including bookmarking, annotation and note sharing, along with additional accessibility features such as text to speech.
Blackwell’s understands how important fast access to the full catalogue of books is to both students and academics. Prompt and flexible delivery of over 8m titles will be supported by the, newly optimised, infrastructure of Blackwells.co.uk in order to offer fast delivery for collection from the shops, or direct to home or university. These new systems, driven by Blackwell’s dedicated and highly trained customer service teams at Cardiff and Liverpool Universities, will deliver outstanding service across a fully-fledged multi-channel offer.
At Cardiff University, Blackwell’s is re-opening a shop in the Student Union building following the redevelopment of the student shopping zone, whilst in Liverpool, Blackwell’s has partnered with Caffe Nero to integrate books and coffee seamlessly, creating a space students will want to relax and socialise in as well as shop in.
Blackwell’s is reopening with considerable support and goodwill from both Liverpool and Cardiff University and this support has been a crucial factor in piloting our new concept with these Universities.
Blackwells is innovating with its offers as well as its shop design and this autumn launches its ‘Student Price Match Guarantee’ to all students, providing all customers with the peace of mind that they will be buying textbooks at the cheapest UK price; an eBook multibuy offer, where, if students buy a physical textbook, they can get the eBook for just £5 and also the ability for students to buy and sell second-hand textbooks at every UK shop.
Blackwell’s CEO David Prescott says:
“When students come in for textbooks we want to show them an environment that will inspire them to come back and see us throughout the year. These new format shops will provide a new experience with more space for students to sit down and take advice from our expert booksellers, to browse multiple channels on interactive touchscreens that not only gives them access to the stock in shop but also to the 8 million titles we have online for home delivery or collection on campus.”
The Astute team placed this announcement as the lead story in book trade title, The Bookseller – read the online version here.