Don't discount bookshops

<p>I keep seeing that not only are book sales down, but sale values are too. You can't pass a Tesco/Asda/W H Smith/Waterstone's, without having all the 50% offers thrown at you. I know all these stores will work on low margin/high sales, but that they can all sell at half price&mdash;or less&mdash;and still make any margin at all shows how uneven our playing field actually is.</p>
<p>It's cheaper (and quicker) on most occasions to nip round to one of the above to purchase one of the 50%-off books than it is to put in the order with the wholesaler. I agree a shrewd negotiator should be able to get a percentage or so extra discount from their supplier&mdash;it's part of bargaining&mdash;and also that larger volume should also get a larger percentage, as when some customers ask &quot;what can you do on this?&quot; (and one's thoughts are maybe, &quot;buy 10 we'll see what we can do&quot;).</p>
<p>Loyal customers keep coming back to where they get good personal service and can find a book the others don't/won't stock, but at 50% discounts what can the loyal customers do . . . they are highly likely to be feeling the pinch of the credit crunch too.</p>
<p>I'm not saying that chains and supermarkets should not be able to discount at all but there should be maximum discount that can be put on any book, then maybe at certain times either we could compete with their discounts and maybe even match them.</p>
<p>And perhaps then customers would change where they shop&mdash;if people had a choice other than monetary, would they buy from these big places? Or would they buy from their local independent?</p>
<p>And the question remains&mdash;if the celeb author can make their money, the publisher theirs and the supplier theirs, and still sell a &pound;18.99 book at &pound;9.99, should it have been &pound;18.99 in the first place?</p>