Because of inflation, booksellers forced to rewrite the price of their books

Noa Moussa, edited by Juliette Moreau Alvarez
modified to

06:44, January 14, 2023

The literary re-entry of the month of January is placed under the sign of inflation. With the rise in the price of paper, publishers had to increase their prices, while the last stocks printed with the old rates. Results: it is up to the booksellers to change the prices themselves, manually.

The literary re-entry of the month of January is placed under the sign of inflation. With the rise in the price of paper, books are not immune to rising prices. It has increased by 85% since July 2021 according to the National Publishing Union. On the side of bookstores, this increase is managed somehow. If publishers increase prices, they must at the same time dispose of their last stocks of books that display the old price on their cover. Consequently, it is up to booksellers to warn customers and rewrite the correct price.

An increase of 4 to 8% in one year

In his bookstore, GrĂ©gory welcomes his customers with his hands busy sticking stickers on the prices of his books. “I put stickers there to hide it, because I don’t have any tags to put the new price on.” The bookseller is obliged to do this additional work, since the prices fixed by publishers aren’t always up to date on book covers. “This book, today, it is marked 10.95 euros but if I ‘beep’ it at the checkout, you will see that it is 11.50 euros”, he shows. “So there is already a difference of a little less than one euro, but it can reach up to 4 or 5 euros on very beautiful books.”

If this corresponds to an increase of 4 to 8% in one year, some customers are still ready to accept it. “When I go to buy a book, it’s not the price that stops me”, explains Francis. “It’s not because I paid 27 euros for a book rather than 24 that it will change anything.” For the moment, GrĂ©gory has not received any complaints from his customers, but he expects a change of tone in the coming months.