Comic Culture Dec 14th

This week’s show has hosts Chris Owen and Walter Durajlija discuss Amazon’s attack on brick and mortar shops, Amazing Fantasy #15 possibly being a bad investment, the passing of Jerry Robinson, great Spider-Man writers of the past, the whole J. Michael Straczynski fiasco and a quiz on the most published characters in comic book history. Chris and Walt also open up the Comic Culture mailbag so please kick back, relax and enjoy  Comic Culture, the radio show full of possibilities.

Comic Culture is produced by Anthony Falcone and is engineered by Andrew Roebuck.

Enjoy Comic Culture December 14th 2011 Edition

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[audio http://www.comicbookdaily.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/comic-culture-dec-14.mp3]
Walter Durajlija
Walter Durajlija

Walter Durajlija is an Overstreet Advisor and Shuster Award winner. He owns Big B Comics in Hamilton Ontario.

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Scott VanderPloeg
Admin
12 years ago

It’s not a knock against Amazon that a customer would go into a comic shop, browse, and then scan the book and buy it online.

The store has failed to convert that customer.

Scott VanderPloeg
Admin
12 years ago

That’s not Amazon’s problem, it’s the customer. If the customer is doing that then there’s no relationship between them and the store.

When you run a radio ad you’re promoting people shop at your store and not at a competitors. Last I checked retailers are there to make money.

If I see a graphic novel at a store that I want should I pick it up right there OR go to my local comic shop, the one I regularly frequent, and buy it from them?

Kevin Boyd
12 years ago

I would say that the customer who actually does that would be acting against human nature. Once you have the product in hand, most would buy it then and there. Is it worth it to scan, fill out an order online and then wait days to weeks for the books to ship to you? Or would you just pay the extra 5% to buy it at the store. I know I couldn’t be bothered for such a miniscule discount. Seems silly on Amazon’s part. Also, although it would be a bit of a dick move, but the customer could always say, would you give me a 5% discount if I buy it from you know instead of ordering the book from Amazon? 5% is not unreasonable.

Kevin Boyd
12 years ago
Reply to  Kevin Boyd

Now, not know.

Kevin Boyd
12 years ago

Stores sometimes will match advertised prices, or even promise to beat them. But it seems contrary to common sense to tell customers to go to another business to look at a product, hold it in their hands, and then abandon that copy to go online and initiate a transaction process that will take time and perhaps additional shipping costs to buy. 25% or more I could undersand, but 5% seems piddly. Plus, once the customer is in the retail environment, the bookseller has the opportunity to win the customer over with other product they may not be able to get at Amazon.

Charlie
Charlie
12 years ago

Walt, I think certain people do this regardless of the reward… in my case 5% is not worth the effort and the reverse is also true. Generally, I try not to buy on impulse and where comics are concerned, I may go to Chapters and read a good chunk before committing to buy the trade at my comic store.

Amazon may be cheaper over all but stores in Toronto have blow out sales 2-4 times a year. 20% to 40% off trades, including HCs and sometimes 60% off back issues. The only caveat is the book you’ve been eyeing may get picked up by someone before you but this has never been a problem for me so far. In fact, the only books that I pay retail for are ones that I feel may be difficult to find later.

I rarely ever by from Amazon or Chapters online. The few times I did, I received books that were overly handled or it’s sent to me in an over sized box with a square sheet of bubble wrap that isn’t even around the book. During transit, it gets tossed around and arrives with the corners all blunted. Majority of the people may not care about this but I was raised with a reverence for paper ^_^

I actually have no idea who buys comics from Chapters… No body I know. I mean, why would you? They only carry popular titles for a fast turn over, a lot of it looks beat up from over handling and if price is the draw, informed collectors know when and where to go hunting. During boxing day, they’ll have a 30% discount on HCs and an extra 10% if you have an iRewards card. I may buy some books for my kids during this time but usually not comics.

Of course there is no true discount cause some where along the line, some one has to eat the difference… unusually some wage worker sweating away… but I digress.

I think the real challenge here is that you’re dealing in commodities. And it because of this that comics don’t have the respect that novels do but I digress again.

Between the years 2009 to 2010, I counted 6 comic stores that closed it’s doors in the GTA… I feel bad for these retailers but having spoke to them… many of them refused to accept the change, or if they did, they did very little about it.

Scott VanderPloeg
Admin
12 years ago

Let me state this for the third time: the problem lies with the customer doing this and not a retailer offering a discount to lure new customers.

Yes it’s predatory but Amazon is king of book sales and they got there by bringing in sales no matter what. If someone has the book in hand and they don’t buy then there’s a disconnect between the retailer and the customer.

If I wanted to get the best price I would only buy from Amazon, since no brick and mortar store can match their discounts. I do all my book shopping at my local comic shop.