Local Christian book shop benefits from new online presence.
The Book Well in East Belfast is one of 410 independent bookshops to share in the £1m profit generated in just four months by Bookshop.org. The book buying site empowers socially conscious shoppers to financially support independent bookshops when shopping online.
Located on the Belmont Road, The Book Well joined Bookshop.org in November as an extra window to their own website. As well as listing some popular Christian books and Bibles, they also included lists of bestselling books by Irish writers, as well as some personal recommendations from the owners themselves and their children.
Owner Richard Ryan, well known to the people of St Molua’s and the wider diocese, explains:
“We signed up on the day it was launched, and we’ve been so privileged to be a part of it and to unite with so many other independent bookshops across the UK to get much needed extra support, especially at a time when it’s been a real struggle for so many. We are overwhelmed by the response from members of the public who are choosing this service over other big online retailers, and the desire from them to want to support this project which has benefited so many small bookshops, not just ourselves. It really has been an unexpected blessing.”
Booksellers using the platform have reported the many ways in which Bookshop.org has been a financial lifeline in a particularly challenging time, with the additional income allowing many to avoid furloughing staff, pay out Christmas bonuses, strengthen their online presence to better compete online, and even open new stores.
Bookshop.org offers an ethical online marketplace that ensures independent bookshops receive 30 per cent of the cover price from each sale they generate on the platform. Moreover, 10 per cent from any sale not attributed to a specific bookshop goes into the shared profit pool and a number of important publishers have also been generous in their participation.