When thinking about making the transition to an online bookstore, there are a number of factors that any school must take into consideration. One such factor is what to do with your physical store space when it is no longer being used for textbooks. With that in mind, we have a few suggestions for ways that your store could repurpose what was once a bookstore into something that serves a new purpose, many of which our partner schools have already used.
By far the most popular option, transitioning from a bookstore to an apparel shop is a simple but effective solution for many schools looking to keep a sales presence on campus. You can keep just about the same setup that you had as a bookstore, but instead of books, you can sell higher-margin items like clothing and memorabilia.
A bookstore with all of its shelves removed makes for a perfect computer lab for students, which is why this option is the right one for many schools that have already made the transition to the online bookstore. A computer lab could get a bit pricey considering the obvious purchases that would need to be made, but it could be one of the most rewarding options for your students.
If you’re looking for a way to repurpose your store space but keep something in that space that will help bring in some extra revenue, a small coffee bar with tables and chairs surrounding it. Not only does a coffee shop prevent your old bookstore space from going to waste, but a coffee shop typically has lower costs and higher margins than a bookstore does.
Similar to the computer lab suggestion, your store space can probably be easily transitioned into office space for your staff. This option is an easy solution for those schools with cramped space in other buildings around their campus.
Another fairly simple idea, your school can exchange its shelves and cash registers for some couches, tables and chairs for students to make use of while studying. This solution is rather similar to the computer lab suggestion, but without as many costs.
Student Recreational Area
Perhaps the idea that your students would enjoy the most, changing your old bookstore into a student rec area is another great idea that schools have successfully implemented. Schools that have chosen this option have typically put in the rec area some combination of televisions, free Wi-Fi, ping-pong tables, pool tables, lounge furniture, video games and more.