Foreword Online

Ideas, information and industry news for collegiate retailers



Adapting to Digital

Posted by Liz Schulte on 4/25/18 5:30 AM

When digital publishing became widely available, the major publishers ignored it. Then eBooks started making headlines, and the industry began to grow at incredible rates. Still, traditional publishers were slow to react. The consensus was that publishers had “five years” to get in front of the issue even though they were already five years behind.

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Make a Plan to Increase College Store Traffic

Posted by Liz Schulte on 3/22/18 5:30 AM

Retail markets have peaks and valleys in customer traffic. Turning the slower months into growth for your college store can be the difference between an average year and a great year. However, this is easier said than done. Start with developing a plan for the slower months. Sometimes the tried-and-true events work best. People know what to expect and how everything works. That same familiarity, though, can be an antithesis of excitement. This year, embrace change and do something you have never done before.

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Spotlight Max Garrett: The Vital Role of Course Materials in Education

Posted by Liz Schulte on 3/19/18 5:30 AM

Course materials play a pivotal role in student success. Whether or not students have their materials by the start of class can have a significant impact on their ability to keep up with the course. It also affects how teachers are able to do their job. How have the recent changes in the educational landscape influenced course materials and students’ expectations?

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How to Make College Stores Successful Retail Destinations

Posted by Liz Schulte on 3/13/18 5:30 AM

College stores are caught between two worlds: education and retail. Maintaining retails sales is imperative to the success of the business, but so is being a part of the campus community and building student trust. Finding balance between the two can be a challenge, but one way to accomplish this is to rebrand your college store as a retail destination — a place students want to be and spend time. Making small changes to the store environment can make the space more inviting to students and encourage them to spend more time within your walls.  

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Spotlight Lori Van Gerpen: You Need at Least One Foot on the Train

Posted by Lori Reese on 1/30/18 5:30 AM

Territory Manager Lori Van Gerpen meets with college stores and campus administrators across the nation. With more than 15 years in the course material industry — plus several years’ experience working in collegiate retail — Van Gerpen has a wealth of knowledge to share with those struggling to find course material solutions. We sat down with her to discuss the future of the industry — digital, Open Educational Resources (OER) and the need for all stakeholders in the course material process to be prepared for change.  

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Share Your Thoughts: How Do You Show Customers You Care?

Posted by Lori Reese on 12/19/17 5:30 AM

Sometimes we need a sales associate’s attention, and sometimes we need to be left alone. For those in customer service, it can be tough to tell the difference, and getting it wrong can cost businesses sales and customers. As college stores seek to become campus destinations that offer memorable experiences, knowing how and when to approach a shopper is critical.

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Communicating With Faculty About Early Adoptions

Posted by Liz Schulte on 12/11/17 5:30 AM

As spring rolls in course material adoptions come back to the forefront of concerns. Finding ways to communicate the importance of early adoptions to faculty can be a challenge. Are you doing enough? Are you doing too much? Students, faculty and college stores benefit from working together. Finding that happy medium where the faculty is informed enough to understand the importance to the student and the store, but does not feel harassed about the subject requires finesse. Here are four best practices when building professional relationships that will create a lasting rapport.

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Last Minute Holiday Promotion Ideas You Need

Posted by Liz Schulte on 11/30/17 5:30 AM

December is to shopping what Halloween is to candy. While it is a busy season for college stores, it is also the perfect time to take advantage of the shopping spirit and run a holiday sale. That’s why we have compiled some last-minute holiday promotion ideas to increase foot traffic in your store.

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Catastrophe: What Happens When the POS Goes Down?

Posted by Lori Reese on 10/20/17 5:30 AM

Let’s say you have the nation’s most beautiful omnichannel college store set-up: a bricks-and-mortar offering that draws traffic with a café and lounge chairs, an app with vibrant color photos of your spirit wear and gifts, and a website students can access from any device.

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Spotlight: Kelly Jones It All Comes Back to Service

Posted by Lori Reese on 9/5/17 5:30 AM

MBS Direct Executive Director of Client Services, Kelly Jones, has been helping educators find course materials solutions since 2002. We sat down with her to discuss the latest challenges in education, the reason more schools are investing in hybrid solutions and the future of the textbook industry.

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