E-commerce

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02 Jan

Facing Rising Deficits, States Consider Enforcing Sales Tax Regs

The troubling effects of falling tax revenues continue to multiply for elected officials facing rapidly growing deficits. Forty-one states collected less revenue in fiscal 2002 than they had planned for in their budgets. Nationwide, sales tax collections were 3.2 percent lower than originally budgeted, personal income tax collections missed states' targets by 12.8 percent, and corporate income taxes were 21.5 percent lower than projected.

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19 Dec

ABA Again Calls for Governors to Enforce Sales Tax Regs

The American Booksellers Association has once again called on the U.S. governors in the 45 states that collect sales tax to fully enforce existing regulations by ensuring that retailers with a physical presence in their state collect sales tax on online sales.

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12 Dec

Bah Humbug! Fraudulent Orders Grow During Holidays -- Here Are Some Tips to Remember

Over the past few days, a number of booksellers have contacted ABA to say that they have received fraudulent orders from overseas -- via either their retail Web sites or e-mail -- for large numbers of hardcover books, often Bibles or medical texts.

Here's a reminder of important e-commerce advice that BookSense.com sent to participating stores earlier in the year.

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11 Dec

BookSense.com Welcomes More New Member Stores

Though BookSense.com ended its free trial at the end of September, a large percentage of trial participants are continuing with the BookSense.com program. Since October 31, when BTW reported that BookSense.com had welcomed 20 new member bookstores to the fold, another 19 bookstores that participated in the BookSense.com free trial officially joined the BookSense.com program.

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26 Nov

BookSense.com and Regional Booksellers Associations Offer Members New Benefit

Six regional associations are working with BookSense.com to offer to their members who have a BookSense.com Web site the opportunity to add their association's regional holiday catalog to their site. It's as simple as adding a link to their content page, said Len Vlahos, director for BookSense.com. "This is just one more fine example of how regional associations and ABA can work together to the benefit of all their member bookstores," he told BTW.

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21 Nov

Will Consumers Surf Their Way Toward Holiday Gift Buying?

With the Thanksgiving holiday approaching -- and the starting gun for the holiday season poised to fire -- many consumers appear ready to turn to the Internet for gift buying.

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20 Nov

BookSense.com Establishes Council of Booksellers

BookSense.com recently announced that it has created the BookSense.com User's Council (BUC). The council was established, in part, as a result of the suggestions of numerous booksellers, and, while it is not a governance body, it will provide valuable feedback and will play a key role in helping ABA staff determine the future direction of BookSense.com. "We do seek a lot of bookseller feedback, but we thought it would be nice to formalize the process," said Len Vlahos, BookSense.com director.

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06 Nov

Booksellers Challenge South Carolina Internet Statute

On Wednesday, November 6, booksellers and free speech advocates filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina a complaint asking that a South Carolina law be permanently enjoined. The statute criminalizes any work communicated on the Internet that is accessible in South Carolina and contains a depiction of nudity or sexual conduct considered to be "harmful to minors." Booksellers are concerned that the law could be construed to include material with sexual content sold on their Web sites.

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31 Oct

BookSense.com Welcomes New Member Stores

The BookSense.com free trial may have ended, but many trial participants are continuing with the BookSense.com program. Since September 30, over 20 bookstores that participated in the free trial have officially joined the BookSense.com program, and "we're expecting more than double that number to ultimately convert from the free trial to the official product," Len Vlahos, BookSense.com director, told BTW. These bookstores join an ever-growing BookSense.com family, which currently numbers more than 230 bookstores.

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30 Oct

Virginia Seeks to Reinstate Internet 'Harmful to Minors' Law

On Monday, October 28, Virginia's Internet "harmful to minors" statute was back in court. Before a three-judge panel in the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, the state of Virginia asked that a U.S. District Court's judgment that permanently enjoined a statute criminalizing Internet communications deemed harmful to minors be overturned and the statute reinstated.

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24 Sep

Holiday Coupons Offer Barnes & Noble No Discount on Sales Tax

On Thursday, September 12, the California Board of Equalization (BOE) issued a Memorandum Opinion stating that Barnesandnoble.com was obligated to pay California back use taxes for a period of four-plus months -- from November 15, 1999, to March 31, 2000. BOE ruled that, because the bricks-and-mortar Barnes & Noble stores were offering customers coupons that discounted purchases made at its online store, Barnesandnoble.com had established a physical presence, or nexus, in the state of California.

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13 Aug

BookSense.com's New Inventory Upload Keeps Customers in Store

Recently, BookSense.com announced a new functionality that will allow bookstores to upload their store's in-stock quantities of items to the BookSense.com database. For participating bookstores, BookSense.com's new inventory upload feature creates an "On Our Shelves Now" inventory status for any book that the store has in stock. As a result, the customer knows not only that a title is available, but also that it is actually in stock.

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31 Jul

Low-Cost, User-Friendly Author Web Sites Offered by Authors Guild

Published writers who don't know HTML from a hole in the wall can now set up their own multi-service Web sites in a day or two at minimal cost under the auspices of the Authors Guild, according to Paul Aiken, the Guild's executive director.

Aiken told BTW that many authors are responding to the Guild's offer of individual Web sites with the capacity to feature up to 50 titles with links to online booksellers, to post book excerpts, to host discussions, and to send and manage e-newsletters.

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18 Jul

BookSense.com E-newsletter: Promoting Your Independents

Over the past year-and-a-half, BookSense.com's e-newsletter has established itself as a fun, promotional vehicle strengthening the bond between consumers and independent bookstores. "We get a lot of feedback from consumers," Linda Castellitto, BookSense.com's creative director, told Bookselling This Week. "And the newsletter will often prompt them to go look for books on their local independent bookstore's site, too. It's helped increase awareness [of independent bookstores]."

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09 Jul

BookSense.com Affiliate Program: Driving Web Traffic Home

For almost two years, the BookSense.com Affiliate Program has been successful on the national level, with currently close to 500 affiliations made up of a mix of authors, political organizations, and businesses. Now, the number of independent bookstores that are initiating their own affiliate programs through their BookSense.com Web sites is rapidly growing. A major reason for the burgeoning numbers is simple, according to Meg Smith, BookSense.com business development and marketing manager. "It's a great marketing tool," she summed up.

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About ABA

The American Booksellers Association, a national not-for-profit trade organization, works with booksellers and industry partners to ensure the success and profitability of independently owned book retailers, and to assist in expanding the community of the book.

Independent bookstores act as community anchors; they serve a unique role in promoting the open exchange of ideas, enriching the cultural life of communities, and creating economically vibrant neighborhoods.

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