Judging by their windows - the most important showcase of a shop's ethos - Waterstone's is publicising value-for-money, while Ottakar's caters to people's interests. I am not suggesting that there is anything wrong with either approach, but both are needed if the consumer is to have the best possible book-buying experience. Competition is not just about providing products at the lowest price, but about offering choice as well. When I want to buy a book I am looking for two things in a bookshop - a fair price and a wide range of books to choose from.
Thursday, September 29, 2005
Author Tracey Chevalier explains in The Guardian why she is worried about Waterstone's proposed takeover of Ottakar's.