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  1. #1
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    Default CBR: comiXology Announces Retailer Resale Program

    Digital comics distributor comiXology has announced a Digital Storefront Affiliate program which is designed to allow comic store owners to sell digital releases through an integration with the store's website.


    Full article here.

  2. #2
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    That is kind of cool. :)

    My biggest gripe about comixology is that the "buy in print" feature is pretty buggy (at least for this area). It pulls up comic shops that closed years ago, places that don't sell comics, and ignores other comic shops in the area. I have a comic shop a block and a half from my house that has been there for 12 years and it says the closest shop is 10 miles away at a spot that doesn't sell comics. Where is it getting this data from?

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by POWRSURG View Post
    That is kind of cool. :)

    My biggest gripe about comixology is that the "buy in print" feature is pretty buggy (at least for this area). It pulls up comic shops that closed years ago, places that don't sell comics, and ignores other comic shops in the area. I have a comic shop a block and a half from my house that has been there for 12 years and it says the closest shop is 10 miles away at a spot that doesn't sell comics. Where is it getting this data from?
    I'm thinking the retailer may have to be signed up with them to be listed... and probably maintain their information in an online database.

    Personally, I would love to give my LCS a little extra from my digital purchases, especially since some weeks I spend more on digital back issues than I do on new print comics... I will have to point this program out to him and keep my eyes peeled for what publishers sign up. It's only worth it if it's the stuff that will bring traffic...

  4. #4
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    This is exactly what I've been talking about for the last year!! I love supporting my local comic shop, but I'm only buying digital comics from here on out. Now I can shop locally and buy the product in the form factor I want!

    This is a huge step in the right direction. FYI: the reason it is integrated on the retailer's website (rather than in an App) is to avoid having to pay Apple 30% for transactions. Ultimately, this needs to migrate directly into an iPad/Android app, and just kick out to the web to process the purchase. This is totally doable longer term. Very excited about this!
    --
    matthh

  5. #5

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    Given Comixology's past history with retailers I will be extremely skeptical about this.
    Visit the Ace Comics & Games Digital shopfront:
    http://www.acecomics.comicretailer.com

  6. #6
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    The spin on this is amazing. This is not good for lcs, it's good for comixology. Digital will eventually be mainstream making print comics very collectible since there will be lower print runs. What your lcs will lose in volume will be made up on higher prices for collector issues. Provided the LCs can wait it out.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pyramid View Post
    The spin on this is amazing. This is not good for lcs, it's good for comixology. Digital will eventually be mainstream making print comics very collectible since there will be lower print runs. What your lcs will lose in volume will be made up on higher prices for collector issues. Provided the LCs can wait it out.
    I don't get this logic. The concept here is that an LCS can now sell any comic in the program (and if the publishers are serious about 'being totally committed to supporting the LCS' then we should expect that they'll ultimately put all their comics in this Comixology Retailer program.)

    And these digital comics are sold without the LCS ever having to hold them in inventory. All they have to do is get the customer to make the purchase through their site.

    Here's how I envision it working:
    1) I walk into my LCS. I look around at all the new releases, plus all the awesome curated displays my local shop has, getting recommendations from friends and store staff
    2) I make a note of the comics I want to purchase
    3) I whip out my iPad, go to mylocalcomicshopswebsite.com/digital and purchase those comics (via my Comixology account). If I don't have an iPad, I wait till I go home and do the same thing
    4) I get my comics and am happy
    5) My LCS gets a check from Comixology for their percentage of said comics
    6) At home, I decide I want to buy some more comics, so I go to mylocalcomicshopswebsite.com/digital and purchase them. My LCS gets paid some more without even having to be in the transaction

    Obviously, the big question is Step #5, what is the LCS % cut of the transaction. I would think this will work swimmingly if that % is roughly equivalent to what they make now (after factoring in paying for their print inventory...)

    This strikes me as a huge win for the LCS, the consumer, Comixology, and the publishers...

  8. #8

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    As a retailer of physical comics online I have a comparative advantage - I get the comics at a better price than many of my competitors (both other comic shops and online retailers) and can draw on my local inventory rather than having to order stock and wait for it to arrive.

    Switching to digital removes that comparative advantage and based on what I know so far I strongly suspect that my margin on digital sales will be significantly lower.

    I was already planning to add a digital alternative - through either Diamond or Google. The key word there is alternative. What I was not planning for was for the current service - which I've been paying for for the past year despite severe defects because I was regularly assured that Comixology was going to fix the problem - was going to be removed.

    I would have severe reservations about doing further business with Comixology.
    Visit the Ace Comics & Games Digital shopfront:
    http://www.acecomics.comicretailer.com

  9. #9
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    Definitely interested in understanding what the margin on digital sales will be for LCS. That is obviously key. Meanwhile, I think you are absolutely right in terms of the other potential players. Diamond will no doubt roll out a competing service, so maybe they'll have to compete by giving you a better margin? The challenge with Google is that they don't currently have the relationships with the publishers or a comic reading app...

    Quote Originally Posted by Iangould View Post
    Switching to digital removes that comparative advantage and based on what I know so far I strongly suspect that my margin on digital sales will be significantly lower.

    I was already planning to add a digital alternative - through either Diamond or Google.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by matthh View Post
    Definitely interested in understanding what the margin on digital sales will be for LCS. That is obviously key. Meanwhile, I think you are absolutely right in terms of the other potential players. Diamond will no doubt roll out a competing service, so maybe they'll have to compete by giving you a better margin? The challenge with Google is that they don't currently have the relationships with the publishers or a comic reading app...
    No but they have librqry of soemthing like 750,000 e-titles and growing and have already announced an affiliate program for independent bookshops.
    Visit the Ace Comics & Games Digital shopfront:
    http://www.acecomics.comicretailer.com

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iangould View Post
    [Google has a] library of something like 750,000 e-titles and growing and have already announced an affiliate program for independent bookshops.
    Mostly public domain and out of print shovelware. They still have no knowledge of or connection to the comics business. Not that I wouldn't like to see them offer digital comics trade paperbacks.

    Quote Originally Posted by matthh View Post
    I what is the LCS % cut of the transaction. I would think this will work swimmingly if that % is roughly equivalent to what they make now (after factoring in paying for their print inventory...)

    This strikes me as a huge win for the LCS, the consumer, Comixology, and the publishers...
    I really doubt it will be anything close to the cut they get now. On the other hand, the transition to digital is already happening for some people, and it's just not viable for each independently owned brick and mortar store to set up their own digital comics store from scratch. And there would be no real risk and likely little real expense to joining the program.

    Austin has some insanely great comic book stores, and I buy t-shirts and stuff from them, but it's been years since I purchased many actual comics from them. First I went to buying trade paperbacks mail order because I could save so much money, and now I buy all my comics digitally on my iPad to save space. Since I shop from ComiXology anyway, I'd love it if my local shops got a cut of that.
    -Goodman


    Comics reader since 1974. Now purchasing 100% of my comics digitally.

  12. #12
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    Everybody knows that most towns don't even have a comic store,
    so this is really a great idea to keep comics flowing to the limbs.
    This is actually a win win, because it's an extra safety net for the
    publishers to keep on selling physical copies until the digital market
    really takes hold, and also a form of comic book lottery for any stores who
    decide to be a part of it. If I was that guy I would buy up cheap auctions
    of back issues and start selling them myself as well.

  13. #13
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    I think you hit the nail on the head here. Even if digital comics offered LCS a lower percentage, the alternative has increasingly been LCS getting $0 because people were buying trades/hardcovers on Amazon. Hibbs has talked about this pretty extensively (he used to sell tons of Absolute, etc. but that has really dried up because of the $40 price difference between his shop and online.)

    I think this is a no brainer opportunity for shops.

    Quote Originally Posted by mistergoodman View Post
    I really doubt it will be anything close to the cut they get now.... And there would be no real risk and likely little real expense to joining the program...First I went to buying trade paperbacks mail order because I could save so much money

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