ABACUS-16, the American Booksellers Association’s annual financial benchmarking survey, has launched, and bookstores have begun submitting their data in an anonymous and fully secure online platform.
The ABACUS project, available only to ABA members, is a confidential survey of key bookstore financial information that provides participating stores with in-depth, customized reports that are an important tool for improving business operations and profitability.
“I don’t know if bookstores realize what an incredible resource ABACUS is — one that’s not available in every industry, and one that I think has helped to fuel the resurgence of indie bookstores in recent years,” said Jessica Stockton Bagnulo of Greenlight Bookstore in Brooklyn, New York. She noted that the ABACUS report’s analysis “has helped us to make informed decisions about our business, from creating yearly budget projections to making changes to our practices and infrastructure.”
This year, ABA is working to compile and create the ABACUS report with Industry Insights, of Dublin, Ohio, a company that has worked with associations for more than 35 years in preparing studies of business demographics, operations information, and financial ratios. An e-mail was sent on August 23 to ABA member bookstores from Michael Becher of Industry Insights (via the e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org) with instructions on how to access this year’s survey. Members will be able to complete the survey securely online or they may download a PDF version of the form to complete and return to Industry Insights.
The deadline for submitting to ABACUS-16 is Wednesday, September 27. ABA member bookstores can begin the submission process by going to www.ABACUSbenchmarking.com.
By submitting their store data for ABACUS-16, stores will receive a detailed individual store performance report that analyzes their financial results, including relevant and insightful benchmarking comparisons across a number of criteria.
As part of this new partnership with Industry Insights, in addition to the customized printed report, bookstores participating in ABACUS-16 will be able to access a secure and private online searchable results tool that allows users to compile ABACUS data using criteria that they select.
Booksellers with questions about submitting to ABACUS-16 are encouraged to contact Michael Becher, CPA, of Industry Insights at (614) 389-2100, ext. 114, or at email@example.com. Booksellers who have general questions about ABACUS can contact ABA’s Dan Cullen via e-mail or at (800) 637-0037, ext. 7560.