The American Booksellers Association recently debuted two new features, one to help booksellers identify upcoming titles available for pre-order, and the other to make them easier for customers to find.
These include a new addition to the Pre-Order Calendar, the page on ABA’s website where booksellers can view a list of suggested titles with good pre-order potential, specifically books with added value to help entice customers to order from their local indie. The Pre-Order Calendar lists selected books’ publication dates as well as details for ordering from publishers.
ABA now notes new items on the calendar that are available for pre-order by indicating the date they were added in red. Since the calendar gets updated about once a week, that notation is removed once the title has been listed for a week or two, in order to highlight newer titles being added. ABA has also begun marking which titles will be featured as a pre-order ad in upcoming Indie Next List fliers using the notation: *INL: Month*.
When available, titles on the Pre-Order Calendar will also link to a page with publishers’ downloadable digital marketing assets. The Pre-Order Calendar is also available as an Excel Download at the bottom of the page, along with ABA-created “Keep It Local” pre-order shelf-talkers.
In addition, IndieCommerce recently created a new pre-order button/badge that went live on IndieCommerce websites last week and allows web administrators at member stores to flag books for pre-order by looking under “Staff Reviews & Pre-Order” on the book product page and marking the check box. Sites will automatically display the small version of the badge on small cover images and the large version of the badge on large cover images. An example of a pre-order badge can be seen here for the hardcover version of The Testaments by Margaret Atwood (Nan A. Talese), out September 10.
While websites will automatically display the default pre-order badge, stores can also create and upload their own custom badges. Only titles with a future publication date have the option to be flagged as pre-orders, and the badge will appear only as long as that pub date is a future date. Once the on-sale date arrives and the book appears in a store’s inventory, the badge will be removed by IndieCommerce. Pre-order badges will only appear on a format that is flagged, which means that the paperback version of a hardcover book will not be flagged automatically.
Booksellers who have questions about the new pre-order badge feature are invited to e-mail IndieCommerce staff.