I’ve now sent out all of the statements to publishers who have books in my store. Some of them have, I hope, got very welcome holiday presents. Certainly the great Finnish book buying festival set all sorts of records that probably won’t be broken for a long time. However, just as heartwarming was the fact that sales continued to be strong for the rest of the month, including a single order that was bigger than many past monthly totals. Even without that one incredible day, we would still have smashed sales records for the month.
Of course this is not money in the pocket. It is the first month that the store has ever covered costs. The extra can go towards making up for two years of losses. But the good thing from my point of view is that most of the money goes to the publishers, and that means I will be sending over $1500 to US companies this month. If I could do that on a regular basis I’d have a reasonable argument for applying for a business visa.
Of course I’m not expecting sales to continue at that level from now on. What I am hoping is that this will prove to be some sort of watershed event, and that from now on sales will continue at a higher level than they achieved before. But I’m not kidding myself that this will just happen. It will need work.
The first thing I’m going to do is some actual marketing. I have a lot more customers registered with the store, and most of them have kindly ticked the box saying that they are happy receiving email. So I’m going to start doing a monthly newsletter. Hopefully that will be a start on developing more of a customer community for the store. I’ll post it to the store blog as well, but if anyone who isn’t yet a registered customer wants to go on the mailing list just let me know.