Bookshop horrays!

26 Mar

Although we are failing miserably with our personal money at the moment (our car tax, insurance, MOT, service and breakdown cover is all due this month – well planned there), we have finally got our figures back from the accountant at work and it turns out I’ve been doing well with the bookshop since I took it over. Horray!


The old bookstall

The old bookstall

I have no experience of management within any time of sales context so I just been doing what seems best, and it seems to have paid off. The bookshop is at the back of church and is just there to make things available to the congregation and to visitors. We don’t have to cover the rent or running costs, we basically just need to break even with the stock that we are buying. Therefore it’s a perfect learning ground for shop management!


The first thing I did was move the shop around and make it more open and accessible. Everything was moved together so that all the cards and music is in one corner, and books in another, with a special corner for the kids with a colourful rug, beanbags, and a magnet board.

I sorted out all the cupboards and ordered the stock so I knew what was what. That meant I could cut down on what we were ordering in to save money. I also improved stock taking mechanisms (we don’t have a fancy till that does it for us) so that we could order what we needed, when we needed it.


From what I can understand of the accounts (which is little), last year we made a loss of £3521 in the bookshop and this year we made a loss of £575. Hang on, I hear you saying – a loss isn’t a good thing. Well no it isn’t, but because the loss of 2007 was carried over into this financial year it actually means that I increased the income of the bookshop by £2946. This means that from this year onwards we should be in the black because we don’t have much of a loss to make up.


There is still so much work to be done in the bookshop, I don’t spend as much time out there as I would like because I am so busy with other admin work. Things should be tidied more and stock could definitely be displayed better and rotated more. I hope that whoever takes over from me – or me if I carrying on working here after the summer- will be able to take more time out to further improve the bookshop! Obviously as a church we are a non-profit organisation, so to make loads of money isn’t the point. But the more money we earn, the more money we can give away – and that’s got to be a good thing.


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