Borders Big Box Bookstore No More
September 23, 2011 • Sanda Cavallaro, Reporter
Filed under Opinion
Forty years after opening the very first Borders store in Ann Arbor, Mich. closed Monday, Sept. 12. The bookstore chain had been experiencing trouble since the late 90s when bad management, imported from the new management, brought in after the chain was sold to K-mart, proved unable to keep up with the shift in change from the widespread use of the internet. Along with an unwillingness to change, Borders executives squandered millions- yes, millions as in six to eight figures- on redecoration projects. Meanwhile customer service and satisfaction were falling by the wayside.
Anyone who shops around the Baybrook Mall knows that Borders was having problems: their Webster location was closed in August after multiple liquidation sales got rid of everything from books to shelving. After all, “Every thing must go.”
The Webster’s Borders location couldn’t have been helpful for business; it was right across from a Barnes and Noble. The putting off of getting online, and not developing E-books, helped drag that specific store, and the rest of the company, down. Borders dealt with the competition with B&N intelligently. It teamed up with many CCISD elementary and junior high schools: the store would have coupons handed out at schools when summer reading list were handed out.
Even so, B&N is now the one breathing easily. Despite the fact that Borders and B&N were both similar big box bookstores, everyone you ask has a definitive opinion on which store they preferred to shop at. Now it doesn’t really matter- if you want a new book, and you don’t want to buy online, you pretty much have to shop at Barnes and Noble.