Username Post: Opening an Anime store next to a comic shop?        (Topic#2964)
Posts: 2

Reg: 06-06-12

09-11-13 12:51 PM - Post#12805    

I been in the anime business for 6 years now and I finally saved the money to open up an Anime store in my area, the only problem is a brand new local comic shop opened up in town 3 months ago. The only anime merch they carry is playing cards(yugiho), if you even count that as anime merch.
Also if I did open a store, my store would only been 1 block away from the comic shop, this could be a bad thing or good thing.

So I need your thoughts on this, do you guys think an anime store would make it next to a comic store? There are lot of things we would have they don't. The only thing that is bugging me is that all the teens go there every Saturday for card tournaments. I was planing on having video games tournaments on Saturday, animeclub night on Friday.

Sorry if I posted this in the wrong part of the forums.

Edited by Lineant on 09-11-13 12:53 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

Executive Producer
Posts: 5081
Loc: California
Reg: 12-07-06

09-11-13 01:51 PM - Post#12807    
    In response to Lineant

If they don't carry much anime stuff and you don't carry much comic stuff, I don't see a problem. If anything, you may benefit from each other since people can go and visit BOTH stores in one trip rather than having to decide to go to either your store OR that comic shop.

I don't know where your store is located, but in the Boston area (which has a LARGE anime community due to the number of colleges), I've seen 3 anime stores close down. It's hard to compete with online sales...or people downloading anime illegally. Video game tournaments and an anime club may help, but an anime store that a friend runs in Maine has stopped carrying anime because it just wasn't selling and has turned to Pokemon (and other gaming) tournaments as a source of income. They still have a large manga selection, but I don't know how much sells or how well. I've seen some pretty old titles still sitting on those shelves.
-PatrickD Executive Producer
Co-Founder: Anime Boston and Providence Anime Conference
Host of The Chibi Project & Anime Unscripted™

Obsessed with robots
Posts: 1468
Reg: 02-25-09

09-11-13 05:53 PM - Post#12809    
    In response to Lineant

It really depends on the market and how the comic shop is.

I regularly go to one comic store in the area that's about 45min (by subway) versus the one that's right around the corner from me because nearly half their store is manga, it's a selection you can't really find at any other store in the area, and that includes the anime stores Patrick mentioned. I think one of the anime stores held on the longest only because they were right next to a college campus.

Location and selection are going to be your biggest factors. If you've got items that are easily found online, and you're not in a heavily populated/easily accessible location, people aren't going to put in the effort to make regular trips to visit, but rather go once in awhile.

If you do still decide to make the leap and create a physical storefront here's some suggestions from what I've seen really hurt other anime stores

-Keep current: Too many anime stores have stuff just stagnant on shelves, never reducing prices even if they've been sitting there for YEARS.

-Expand slightly outside of anime: I know it might sound crazy, but hear me out. There's plenty of other fun stuff from Japan that might attract people, especially if it's eclectic gift stuff or snacks.

-Talk to local conventions: A great way to do some win-win marketing is to see if a local convention wants to organize a pre-reg event at your store. Maybe do a costume contest around Halloween. Several stores in the area I know have always seen an increase in sales during and after these events. That comic store I mentioned earlier? I found out about it because there was a pre-reg event there.
-Doug Wilder
Resident Mecha fanboy of AnimeCons TV!

New England Con Whore
Posts: 1724
Loc: Massachusetts
Reg: 06-24-07

09-16-13 12:03 PM - Post#12812    
    In response to Lineant

Do they carry manga? My hometown has two comic book stores, one has manga and one doesn't. I say if they don't have manga, that's you niche right there.

I don't think you're stepping on their turf at all. And not everyone who plays video games plays CCGs. But, I would maybe work with them about the timing. Cards seems like a daytime event, video games a night time event. Maybe you can make it a big Gaming Day in your area? If there is a food place in between or nearby, see if they want in on it too (gamers need food in between tournaments ).

I would definitely create a strong business relationship between the two of you. That way if someone goes into his store looking for an anime, he can send them your way, and if someone wants comics you can send them his way. Create a two-stop nerd shopping experience. Have an area recommending anime and manga titles similar to popular comic book series, and he can do the same with comic book recommendations based off of anime and manga. Have joint events (like mentioned above), advertise each others' stores, promote events they have and they can promote events you have. I think it's a win-win if the two companies work together. A rift between the two would only be bad business for both.
Elizabeth: Website and Podcast Writer
My Conventions

Edited by EllyStar on 09-16-13 12:03 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

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