Read now before it becomes pay-to-access: The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Borders plans to display books with the cover facing out in attempt to drive up sales – though “the new approach will require a typical Borders superstore to shrink its number of titles by 5% to 10%.”
“We always had face-out titles on the shelves and on tables, but they were used as punctuation and tended to focus on popular titles,” says Anne Kubek, senior vice president of Borders U.S. stores. “Today we’re showing the front of books even when we only have two or three copies.”
The approach is evident at some other retailers, as well. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., for instance, displays virtually all of its books face-out, a spokeswoman says.
Will this mean an improvement in cover art? Or more open-shirted-men adorning the romance shelves like buxom male Rockettes, minus the high heels? I can see it now, an endless march of mantitty, female butt cleavage, cartoon legs, and that girl with the pink flippy skirt who is everywhere.
Oh! And don’t forget the monster thumb girl. If we’re really lucky, Borders will start stocking more Mills & Boon titles, such as Kate Hardy’s Sold to the Highest Bidder so we can see lots and lots of monster thumb girl on the Border’s cover-out book shelves.
While the article discusses some of the pros and cons of the decision, such as the potential of visually overwhelming the browser with so many titles and so many selections, the decision to sell books using that cover as a primary tool will probably yield some interesting results in terms of sales data.
Thanks to Renee and to Jill F. for the links.