Indigo cuts book prices
New promotion cuts price of all books 10-20 per cent
Oct 31, 2007 01:24 PM
As the Canadian dollar soared early today to its highest level since 1960 and postal warehouses filled up with goods bought online from U.S. retailers, another major Canadian retailer announced price cuts aimed at luring customers into its stores.
Indigo Books and Music Inc. said today that its new Sticker Savings Event entitles customers to a discount worth 10 to 20 per cent off any book in its stores. The higher discount is for customers who belong to its “irewards” loyalty program.
The price promotion comes in response to growing evidence that more consumers are shopping at U.S.-based online sites, said Indigo spokesperson Lisa Huie.
"We’re hearing a lot of movement toward online shopping (and) we thought it was important in light of the disparity in the price printed on the (book) jacket, that … beyond the fact that we’ve already seen prices come down, we have prices today that are at or better than the U.S. prices that are listed on the cover," she said. "We’ve actually ratcheted up the promotional activity since the strengthening of the dollar — more particularly since it hit par."
The discount does not completely close the gap between the printed prices of Canadian and U.S. books. But in a notice to customers handed out in its stores, Indigo says books in Canada will always cost up to 10 per cent more due to differences in the scale of the business here.
The Canadian dollar rose another 0.3 per cent early Wednesday to $1.0513 U.S. and is up 22.6 per cent against the U.S. greenback so far this year. Yet consumers have pointed out that prices for many goods remain as much as 30 to 40 per cent higher in Canada.
Several major retailers have responded by publicizing their efforts to lower prices for consumers, including discount retailers Zeller’s and Wal-mart.
The price gap on books is particularly evident to consumers as both the U.S. and Canadian prices come pre-printed on the book cover, Huie said.
Many consumers don’t understand that the price printed on the book is set by the publisher, not the retailer, often six months before the book appears on stores shelves, Indigo also explained.
The books on Indigo’s shelves today reflect exchange rates in effect six months ago, when the Canadian dollar was trading at 85 cents U.S., the retailer said.
Indigo said book prices have been falling over time as the Canadian currency rose. A new book that retails for $30 today would have hit store shelves six months ago at $35, the company said.
Indigo said its sticker savings program will remain in effect through the Christmas Holiday period and can be used on any book, including those already discounted under another program. The retailer also noted that it routinely adjust prices to reflect new conditions and has lowered the price of 25,000 items in the past four months by between 5 and 30 per cent.
As well, customers have always been able to take advantage of Indigo’s bestsellers discount program, which offers savings of 30 per cent to regular customers and 40 per cent to members of Indigo’s loyalty program, Indigo said.
For example, John Grisham’s popular book Playing for Pizza is priced at $21.95 U.S. or $26.95 Canadian, but is available under the bestseller program Indigo stores for $18.87. If purchased online, the price is even lower.
The company sells books through Indigo, Chapters and Coles stores as well as chapters.indigo.ca.
© Copyright Toronto Star 1996-2007
“Ratcheted up”: This means to slowly increase or to slowly boost the amount of something.
The cheerleaders ratcheted up the spirits of the fans in the stands.
When companies expand they ratchet up the amount of employees they hire.
“hit par”: This means to become even or to be average. It is also used in the game of golf as the standard strokes that a player can get on each hole.
The golfer hit par on the eighteenth hole of the golf course.
John wanted to hit par but instead he was just below.
True or False: