The American Booksellers Association and e-book provider Hummingbird Digital Media announced today a non-exclusive marketing partnership that includes the integration of Hummingbird with ABA’s IndieCommerce platform websites, enabling the convenient purchase of e-books through independent bookstores.
Indie bookstore customers now have an additional option through which purchase e-books while supporting their local independent bookstore. The Hummingbird platform integrates with ABA’s IndieCommerce and IndieLite programs by automatically supplying a “Buy the e-book” button next to the “Buy the Book” button on the bookstore’s title pages.
“ABA is always interested in providing a selection of options for readers and book buyers to purchase digital titles from independent bookstores,” said ABA CEO Oren Teicher. “We are pleased to have this new partnership with Hummingbird, which gives ABA member bookstores an additional choice for offering e-books to their customers.”
With the IndieCommerce integration, an e-book purchase option appears on the IndieCommerce product page for titles available in that format; Hummingbird supplies the shopping cart and fulfillment via a store co-branded white-label site, and the company collects and remits sales tax in all relevant states. Hummingbird will also provide a link back from the white-label site to the referring store for purchase of the print book. Unique to Hummingbird, booksellers get a branded storefront and a branded app that mirrors what has been placed on the bookseller’s storefront.
According to Josh Mettee, co-founder of Hummingbird and a 25-year veteran of the book industry, “Bookstores without an effective way to capture their existing customers’ e-book business are subtly sending their customers to their major online competitor’s program for e-book purchases. Besides missing revenue, there is the danger that the bookstore’s loyal customers may be lured into buying print books from that competitor as well. Hummingbird is dedicated to working with independent bookstores in order to help them receive their fair share of the e-book market.”
Hummingbird helps bookstores promote e-books through in-store and online marketing with a full catalog of resources. More than 75 ABA member stores currently sell e-books through Hummingbird, and Hummingbird will be added to the list of ABA Marketplace Partners, which includes other e-book and digital audiobook vendors.
ABA member booksellers are invited to explore the choices in vendors of audiobooks and e-books. Through ABA’s marketplace partnerships, booksellers can select the vendor that best suits their needs (though booksellers are encouraged to use just one vendor per product type to avoid customer confusion). Marketplace partners are also fully integrated with IndieCommerce and IndieLite sites.