Two million books, new and used, which can be purchased in a few clicks and will be delivered to your doorstep directly by bookstores. This is the concept of "Cdiscount Librairie", the new niche which the French e-merchant is launching on Tuesday and which we are revealing exclusively.
“We do not want to compete with booksellers. We will not be selling books ourselves, ”said Jonathan Gorges, director of this new category and director of the Cdiscount market place, straight away. Big names in the bookstore such as Decitre, Chapitre, Gibert (formerly Gibert Joseph) or Recycle Livre have chosen to partner with us to have an additional sales channel and benefit from our 20 million unique monthly visitors. "
A partner of booksellers
Once listed as sellers on the Cdiscount market place, booksellers are billed an average commission of around 15% on their sales, but they themselves send novels, essays, comics, guides and other documentaries directly to customers.
Why is the platform launching into this segment of the book? "It is a category on which Cdiscount was present in its beginnings, 20 years ago, and we had abandoned it in favor of other more technical goods," recounts Jonathan Gorges. We had in our strategic axes to develop it again and the Covid-19 accelerated the decision. We found, during the confinement, that people were looking for books on the Internet. Our aim is to offer the widest possible range of goods and services. "
In France, 3,300 independent bookstores employ 12,000 people. According to GFK, the book market, all sales channels combined, amounted to four billion euros in 2019.
This new offer, Cdiscount is convinced, is timely. “Beyond the crisis, consumer behavior will change profoundly, says Jonathan Gorges. They are even more interested in having their deliveries delivered quickly and securely to their homes. And for the damaged library sector, which recorded a drop in value of between -60 and -70% between mid-March and mid-April, we can be a valuable partner. "
"Cdiscount is less perceived as a predator than Amazon"
If it places itself as a partner of bookshops, Cdiscount competes with Amazon and Fnac, the two giants of e-commerce and online books. But the site denies it. "No, we are in a client logic and in supporting small businesses that do not have the means to develop their site and animate it commercially as we can do", underlines Jonathan Gorges. Contacted, neither Amazon nor Fnac have expressed their reaction to the arrival of this new player.
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"This logic of market place is inevitable in my opinion and it will develop in other universes, even little digitalized like the niche trade, analyzes Thomas Husson, vice-president of the specialized cabinet Forrester, which follows in particular the usage consumers. To sell online, you need know-how, ergonomics, critical size. Difficult to reach for a trader. And the choice of Cdiscount by the major bookstores hardly surprises him. "It is more natural for them to go to a new player, less perceived as a predator than Amazon," says Thomas Husson. It is a local player, in a good dynamic, that the last weeks of confinement have accelerated. "