With its mission of ensuring social and academic success for students, it’s probably an understatement to say that Barnes & Noble College is taking the campus bookstore experience to places it’s never gone before. “We’re helping our students succeed by acting as a complete support system, rising about the transaction and providing them with all kinds of services for their college journey,” explains Lisa Malat, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer for Barnes & Noble College. And that philosophy of putting the student experience first is clearly on display with the expansion of the Company’s Price Match program to most campuses this Winter Rush.
With 418 campus bookstores participating in the Price Match program during Fall Rush, student response was overwhelmingly positive. In surveys conducted post rush, students said the program was “efficient and easy,” saving them money while enabling them to enjoy the convenience of getting the books they needed right at their campus bookstore.
“We had great success with the Price Match program in the fall,” explains former Augustana University Bookstore Manager Janine Haslach, who oversaw its introduction at the University this past rush. Although the campus bookstore was already competitively priced, Haslach says “the important thing to understand is that the program gave our customers even more confidence to shop with us, knowing we were going to give them the best pricing possible — and these kinds of savings are crucial as we look for more ways to help reduce the cost burden for students.”
Barnes & Noble College’s Price Match program matches the prices of any textbook advertised or offered from local brick-and-mortar bookstores or online retailer (i.e., Amazon or bn.com). Any price difference is refunded back to the customer through their original form of payment, and includes
rental, used and new textbooks.
One of the reasons behind the great success of the program at Augustana University was its clear communication to students, and as the company rolls out Price Match to more campuses this year, putting the word out that students can obtain all the resources they need to succeed from their campus bookstore is key. “Students have told us that they need more help when it comes to selecting and purchasing their textbooks,” says Barnes & Noble College’s Director of Consumer Marketing, Tamara Vostok, “and programs like our Igniting the New Student Connection outreach are often the only way they can learn about the options that best suit them,” she says.
Faculty also benefit from the Company’s Price Match program with the exact cost of textbooks clearly visible to them at the moment they are making textbook adoption decisions for their classes. “At the end of the day, we are a strategic partner to the schools we serve, to help them realize their goal of increased student retention, graduation rates and overall student satisfaction,” says Malat. “Programs like Price Match are just the latest way we are demonstrating that commitment.”