Season’s greetings!

The end of 2022 is near but indie booksellers are still hard at work. Thank you to the dedicated bookstore owners and staff who are working long hours to serve their customers and communities during the holiday season.

This month, we share some highlights from the past year, campaign updates, details about upcoming events, and more. 

Please enjoy.


2022 was an exciting year for CIBA! Our success was made possible by our growing membership of 200+ bookstores, publishers, and supporters. Thank you for your continued investment in this association and industry.

A major highlight of this year was seeing the full impact of our early advocacy work. In its first year, the Support for Booksellers component of the Canada Book Fund awarded $12 million in funding to more than 175 small chains and independent bookstores. We will continue to support members as they explore new ways to reach customers online and increase book sales. We are also pursuing three exciting new projects in 2023 with support from the program.

CIBA’s Supplier Relations Committee had their work cut out for them this year. They met seasonally with eight major distributors to negotiate improved terms of trade for independents. Bookseller Members can catch up on the details of their negotiations in the Member Portal. Please also keep an eye out for another supplier relations survey in the New Year!

This year, we hosted more than 30 professional development sessions that provided unique opportunities for booksellers to learn from their peers and industry experts. Missed a session? No problem! Members can access event recordings here. Thank you to all the partners and participants who helped make this series a success.

Finally, our 2022 marketing campaigns celebrated indies and their contributions to Canadian culture. We saw immense growth to our flagship marketing campaign, Canadian Independent Bookstore Day, and we received a great response to our #IndieBookshopHaul summer contest. We're grateful to all those who helped us boost the signal on these initiatives.

For more details about our accomplishments this year, you can check out our annual report. If you would like to chat about your experience as a CIBA member or inquire about joining the association, we’d love to hear from you. Please reach out to Laura Carter.


Our holiday campaign was a great success. We'll share our final post promoting indie bookstore gift cards today on InstagramTwitter, and Facebook.

Thanks to the bookstores, publishers, industry organizations, and readers who encouraged Canadians to shop early, take advantage of indie bookseller expertise, and gift the indie bookstore experience to others.

As you know, this multi-phase campaign was designed to promote indie bookstores during this important time of year and complement existing bookseller marketing plans. We hope you found our content useful and compelling!

If you’d like to share feedback about this year’s campaign, please get in touch.

Ask the Bookseller: Design Your Store for Discoverability!
Thursday, January 19
4pm PT, 5pm MT, 6pm CT, 7pm ET, 8pm AT, 8:30pm Newfoundland 

Independent bookstores stock something for every reader, but how do booksellers set up their (physical and online) space to promote discoverability? How can we encourage the sale of more Canadian-authored, BIPOC, and independently published titles?

Join our panel of experienced booksellers to learn strategies for increasing discoverability in your store.

Publisher Picks: Spring Edition 
Thursday, January 26 – Multinational Publishers
Tuesday, February 7 – Independent Publishers
3:30pm PT, 4:30pm MT, 5:30pm CT, 6:30pm ET, 7:30pm AT, 8:00pm Newfoundland

CIBA's Publisher Picks series is back with its spring edition! We'll bring you to the heart of publisher marketing discussions to discover the season's best bets – the books you might not know you need but will be glad you have on hand.

Publishers will present highlights only in a speed-dating format.

Café Books is a staple of the Canmore, AB community. Started 20 years ago as a small corner section of a café, the store has grown into a varied space for both local and visiting readers. We spoke to co-owners Joy and Charlie McLean about this unique store and why they love the bookselling business.

“When aspiring booksellers ask for my advice, we always say: ‘You can’t be afraid – you must have the stock, you must have the books. Order daily to keep on top of the bestsellers rather than rigidly sticking to a set time to reorder. If people take a book in their hand, they are more likely to buy it.’”

Read the article here.

We’re ramping up our plans for Canadian Independent Bookstore Day, which will take place on Saturday, April 29, 2023. 

Here are some updates on what we have in the works:

  • Canadian artist Alexander MacAskill will create custom artwork for the campaign that will be used across our promotional materials and assets

  • Our Contest for Book Lovers will once again reward three lucky book buyers with generous gift cards to their favourite indies 

  • We're working with publishers and industry partners to create dedicated swag and exclusive books and products for the big day

We’ll provide more details in January and promotional materials will be made available to members in March. In the meantime, please save the date!

Not a member yet but want full access to the campaign? Join us today.

Please note that the CIBA office will be closed beginning on Friday, December 23 and back to business-as-usual on Tuesday, January 3. We look forward to our return in the New Year!

We hope the holiday season brings you all joy, rest, and good books.


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