Before joining Akademos just a few weeks ago, I worked for many years as a college English instructor at the University of Connecticut. As an “elder millennial” who grew up at the dawn of the Internet age, I was always interested in how the current generation of students relates to technology. I noticed two things: 1] college students are living more and more of their lives online and 2] many students, inundated with technology, crave the embodied experience of the physical campus environment.
Your campus bookstore plays an important role in meeting that second need. I’ve seen how the bookstore helps students connect with their institution on a tangible level. Yes, they can make purchases online, but many students—eager to express their school pride—enjoy browsing the spirit wear and gifts on display at your store.
In light of this, it is worth thinking about how to insulate these valuable brick-and-mortar operations from loss during periods of closure, or when students are away from campus. One powerful solution is to complement your store with a virtual bookstore.
Providing your bookstore a home on the web, allowing students to purchase course materials online 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, lets you maintain your revenue stream and customer engagement even when students are away. Additionally, maintaining a digital sales platform achieves dramatic textbook savings for students, making your store competitive in the age of online retail.
When your doors are open, a virtual storefront can drive foot traffic to your store through cross promotion on the platform. A virtual bookstore takes on the burden of managing your textbook inventory so that your store can focus on the things that make your institution unique—spirit wear, gifts, and special events.
Here at Akademos, we are eager to help your store succeed, both on campus and off. I now witness that happening every day. We know that you are the heart and soul of your school. Our technology and our team is here to support your connection to the campus 24/7/365.