Right now we are living in unprecedented times and not only is this a health pandemic but it’s also a huge hit for the economy. Loads of both large and small companies are struggling to stay afloat and we need to do our best to support these small independent stores while staying inside! So this is how to support an indy bookstore.
Hive is a website I just found out about and I have instantly fallen in love (till I start researching it to do a blog post and discover it uses kittens running in wheels to power their website or they’re owned by the devil.) Hive allows you to search for not only bookstores in your local area using your postcode as well as allowing you to pick up your order from that bookshop. They get a percentage of the money you pay for being a pick up point and you get your book! It’s a win win! I really think you should check it out, support an amazing business. They also deliver so it’s perfect for the way things are right now as well as some bookstores are still open for you to go pick up.
Another really simple way is to just keep an eye on a bookshops social media. Loads of independent shops are currently offering their own pick up/delivery service. Words on the Water in London are offering a flat rate of delivery for up to 10 books and have a huge library for you to pick from. As well as this it’s good to just call or email your bookshop of choice (but be aware that it may take them a little longer than normal to get back to you so be prepared for that. You can search for your local store using the booksellers association or using Hive’s bookshop search. I suggest you use Hive as that seems to be a little more reliable.
Also if you’re friendly with the owner of an indie bookstore ask about a gift card or voucher. It may be just a little bit but every little helps. As well as just engaging in their social media, it takes nothing to drop a like or share their post. It’s such a simple thing to do but it makes a huge difference for shops.
As a last resort you could use AbeBooks. So I did a review on this website last year and I do think it’s a good website but I think there are much better options out there for supporting inde shops.
But it’s also amazing to see bigger companies doing their bit for the small guys too. Bloomsbury publishers are offering a scheme where inde shops can share a link to Bloomsbury’s website and the bookshop will be credited back 15% of the sale price. Also look at charities or other ways you can donate.
When this is over the world is going to be very very different. We are going to live, shop and love differently and it’s important that we have something to look forward to. I can’t wait till a time when I get to walk around a bookshop again and I need to know that they will be there at the end of all this. If you agree with me then you need to help too.
Check out my last blog post here where I talked about dystopian novels and maybe consider subscribing to my newsletter on the right.