Barnes and Noble (B&N) bookstore was started as a student book-exchange store. It later evolved into book retail superstores, and also incorporated online retailing, college bookstores and an ebook store. With more than 600 stores today, B&N is the largest bookstore in the nation. As large as they are, they have faced a lot of challenges as well. B&N started as a very innovative business. In fact, they were the first bookstore to air television ads. They were very memorable and still remain in the heads of truly loyal customers even 40 years later. They were also the first bookstore to sell best-selling books at a huge discount in order to sell more and get their name out there. They expanded throughout the country and it was almost as though they became an instant favorite overnight. They made their stores friendly with cafes and comfortable seats to sit in, so one could enjoy a book without the hassle of everyday life to get in the way. They tended towards the slower lifestyle and wanted their customers to be able to have a place they could escape to with their story and enjoy. As can be seen, B&N was incredibly versatile and able to change with customer demands. They were a superstore giant and received great respect, even from those working against them. Decades ago, B&N’s main competitors were Borders, Waldenbooks, local bookstores and libraries. Borders, their biggest competitor, went out of business in 2011 due to their inability to maintain their brick and mortar stores based on their declining sales. That left Barnes and Nobles in the lead, and their other competitors have also had to downsize or were wiped out of the competition. In an attempt to investigate B&N further and provide more background information, a SWOT analysis was performed.
One of the main strengths of Barnes & Noble is the wide variety of selection of books and book-related products they offer. For seven consecutive years, they were awarded the title of