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Bookstore Visit Challenge 2016

Many of the more successful stores have a secret tool…other stores. Owner and staff visits to other bookstores provide a wealth of ideas.

Between now and September 18, 2016, to encourage booksellers (owners and staff) to visit other bookstores and share that experience, NAIBA will award the winning store with two free guest-room nights at the Fall Conference hotel.

Rules of Engagement:

  • The bookstore visit must involve discussion with staff/owners on operations of the bookstore. (No drive-by’s!)
  • Proof via a photo of the visit, along with a description of an idea shared or something you admire in that store, is required.  Send that to It will be posted on our website and newsletter.
  • Visit must be between January 1 and September 18, 2015 to count. (Don’t try slipping in last summer’s road trip.)
  • There are no geographic boundaries. If the store is in Hawaii, that counts. (Aloha!)

Point System:

Each visit by any staffer is one credit towards this challenge.  So if two staffers visit a store together, that is two credits.

Happy Trails!!

** Be sure to let the store know you are coming!

Submit your photos and comments to NAIBA at

Donna Fell Wins 2015 Bookstore Visit Challenge

 "I first have to say that visiting bookstores has always been a hobby of mine and this felt nothing like a challenge to me!" said Fell throughout her travels this spring and summer.  "I have always found that booksellers have one common theme, putting a great read in the hand of their customer."

NAIBA challenged booksellers this spring to go out and visit other bookstores, wherever they might be. There were no geographic boundaries. The challenge encouraged all staffers to participate on behalf of the store and their collective experience would go towards points for the contest, but more importantly, strengthening their bond with other booksellers and learning more about the industry through each other's businesses.

Donna Fell was regularly emailing NAIBA photos and comments from her visits to stores. She took advantage of the time at NAIBA events to visit with local stores; she traveled to stores in our region; and she went on a busman's holiday to Europe. She led the pack with 14 store visits.

"Traveling around regionally and globally has only strengthened my theory that no matter what the language, who the customer, where the location, booksellers want their customers to leave their store with a book they will love," said Fell. "Each bookstore owner or employee I met was very willing to share information, knowledge and ideas with me, knowing I was a fellow bookstore owner with the same interests.

Fell summed it up nicely, "There isn't another industry I would ever want to work in seeing how my fellow bookstore owners are not only my equals but also 'my friends'."
at Ye Olde Warwick
at Bethany Beach Books
at Posmans Chelsea Market
a chain & indie store on same block in Italy