Why Campus Bookstore Textbook Sales Continue to Decline (According to College CFOs)

Posted by Jonathan Shar on May 7, 2015

Two years ago, Akademos published the first comprehensive survey of college CFOs regarding the future of college bookstore and textbook services - and in an exclusive webinar held on April 29, released the highlights of the eagarly aniticpated 2015 follow-up study

In both surveys,participants were asked to estimate the trend line in their bookstore's textbook sales over the past 3 years.

In the latest survey, 91% of respondents indicated textbook sales have been flat or down over the past three years and in just two years there was a 36% increase in CFOs reporting declines of more than 10%. 

Source: CFO survey on Textbook Delivery and Bookstore Services. Akademos, 2015. 

the survey data reviewed during the webinar provides some valuable insight into why sales declines have accelerated and why they are likely to continue to decline in the future. 

Robert Pignatello, SVP of finance and Administration at CUNY’s John Jay College shared some valuable insights on this topic as one of the featured speakers during the webinar and commented on his own expereince and observations:   

"We started to think about providing low-cost options to students and re-thinking the traditional way of viewing the college store," recalls Pignatello. We began to build up other areas of revenue producing activity at the college, knowing this trend was going to continue. In a few short years we saw [textbook sales] go down by 50%, and it continued to go down."

To learn more about key trends and predictions on the future of textbook sales and campus bookstore services, the full presentation and recording of our "2015 College CFO Survey on Textbook Affordability and Bookstore Services” webinar session is now available for free download.
Click here to request webinar materials

Topics: Bookstore Sales, Research