Borders Tests More Covers, Fewer Books
Space-hogging move will cut titles 5%-10%
By Kate Rockwood,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 13, 2008 3:00 PM CDT
Vice President Dick Cheney browses as he waits to pay for items at Borders in downtown Washington on September 25, 2007. Borders execs hope placing more books face out on its shelves will boost sales.   (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)
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(Newser) – Borders is betting you do judge a book by its cover, the Wall Street Journal reports. In hopes of catching more customers’ eyes, the nation’s second-largest book retailer will dramatically increase the number of face-out books it displays. The move, aimed at countering stagnant sales and distracted customers (elections, Olympics, Internet shopping), will gobble up shelf space, cutting titles by 5% to 10%.

The face-out plan saw individual title sales in a prototype store 9% higher than other locations. But some fear trimming titles could give Barnes & Noble a greater advantage; it already outpaces Borders by at least 30,000 titles in an average store. Borders says a new website, to launch in May, will cater to customers seeking greater selection.