Thursday, August 2, 2012
Why Borders Failed
An interesting side note. This week’s Smashwords informed us that five of their authors are on the New York Times Best Seller’s List. That doesn’t mean that Smashwords put them there all by itself, but it does signify the significance of the digitals in the publishing industry. If you don’t know the story – Borders went out of business because it failed to see the new digital trend. By the time Borders realized the power of the digitals, Amazon was already making 50% of its sales on their Kindle platform. Barnes and Noble had introduced Nook and was well on its way to the 50% point. Borders woke up and found that the world had changed and that didn’t have either a digital reader or a digital platform. It simply could not compete. As someone from South Africa told me – back in the paper book days they would first have to figure a way to send dollars and then they’d have to wait six weeks for a book to arrive. Now they pay in whatever currency they pay in and they get the book they want in ten seconds. The book world has been placed on it’s head. It’s going to be interesting to see what happens next.