In less than nine months since its opening in the heart of Milan, the Mondadori Duomo bookshop has registered 1.5 million visitors and an increase in turnover compared to the megastore previously located in the same location in Piazza Duomo. The enthusiasm that greeted the new opening testifies to its ability to meet the needs of a wide audience, becoming a unique meeting point designed to promote reading, entertainment and culture.
The bookshop has succeeded in combining technological innovation and cultural tradition with a highly distinctive concept and design, while maintaining a focus on books, with over 100,000 volumes available. In addition, with its 1,300 square metres, thematic areas and immersive, experiential and sensory spaces, Mondadori Duomo has experienced continuous growth in the number of visitors, the number of sales and, consequently, profits.
‘We are very proud of the results achieved by Mondadori Duomo. Through the passion, dedication and professionalism of the teams involved, it represents not only a symbol for the city of Milan but a true cultural centre for an international and intergenerational audience,’ says Carmine Perna, Chief Executive Officer of Mondadori Retail, the Group that manages the largest network of bookshops in Italy. ‘The new Mondadori Duomo has proven to be a place where one can fully experience the world of books, while finding many other products and services related to culture — from music to writing, from gaming to events. Ultimately, it aims to be a place where people can meet and spread ideas, a cultural and experiential hub serving the city and anybody who is interested,’ Mr Perna concludes.
From 23 March 2023, opening day, the bookshop has also become a major destination for younger generations due to the Just Comics area — the format created by Mondadori Retail for comics fans that has intercepted the reading tastes of the youngest readers — and the range of music products, with hot new releases, a vast selection of K-pop and an extensive assortment of vinyl.
Moreover, by integrating some of the best technologies in a traditional point of sale, an all-round customer experience is ensured: simple, immediate and even more engaging.
As examples, we mention:
- the Cilindro immersivo (Immersive Room): a place in the We Are Junior area that provides children and young people with a space for sharing and interacting with fantasy worlds; it has recorded over 1,000 visits per week. The schedule and selection of video stories is continually updated according to the preferences expressed by young customers, who can experience and be carried away by them during their time in the room;
- Trovalibro: touch screens located on all floors of the store allow people to explore products, helping them to navigate the bookshop and locate their books easily and effectively;
- the installation of self checkouts: 1 in 5 people use them, proving that customers have gradually become accustomed to handling payments by themselves, promoting optimal flow management.
Finally, the Mondadori Duomo Arena has become a point of reference for national and international authors and artists due to the rich calendar of events, presentations, meetings and book signings. To date, it has hosted over 200 events with international guests such as the great American director Quentin Tarantino and the American cartoonist Frank Miller, as well as many other personalities in literature, music and entertainment. For 10 days last October, the bookshop also hosted Emma Marrone’s exclusive Flagship Store for the launch of Souvenir, where the Italian singer met all her fans to sign copies of her latest album in an authentic journey through emotions and connections. There was also a merchandising point for fans to purchase products created especially for the occasion.
The innovative capacity and uniqueness of Mondadori Duomo has already received several prizes and awards:
- Gold level LEED Certification for Interior Design & Construction (ID+C), for paying close attention in the design phase to improving energy use and the quality of interior spaces, lighting and air, water management and the use of materials with a low environmental impact;
- special mention for the best communication project and engagement strategy by Touchpoint Awards Engagement 2023 thanks to a partnership with Absoluta;
- the Kikilab Innova Retail Award in the Non-Food category;
- prize for the Best Customer Experience by Forum Retail Awards 2023 – IKN;
- finally, the Smart Retail Award – Retail Institute: overall prize in the six Best in Show categories and Best Store Design, for the unique concept developed by Il Prisma and the other partners who worked on the project. Also, for the occasion, runner-up for Best Digital Marketing, in partnership with Blimp.
For the Christmas period, the bookshop in Piazza Duomo will offer customers and visitors a unique and immersive Christmas experience based on new LED technology. Special Christmas-themed animations will be projected on the skylight throughout the month of December, carrying adults and youngsters on a sensory journey of lights, colours and emotions. The idea was developed by the artist Sergio Pappalettera, founder of Studio Prodesign, a graphic design and art studio active in visual research and experimentation known for its collaborations with leading Italian artists.
Mondadori Store is the largest network of bookstores in Italy. It is a cultural organisation active nationwide, with more than 500 stores in both large cities and small towns, an e-commerce website — Mondadoristore.it — and also a book club. Its bookshops are conceived to be places where local communities can meet and learn, and future readers can develop a love of reading. In addition to books — the core product — formats and products specific for the younger generations are also available. These include ‘Just Comics’ (dedicated to comics and illustrated volumes, from manga to graphic novels, from superheroes to major Italian authors) and ‘We are Junior’, an area designed to welcome younger readers, with books and educational games to stimulate the imagination. Mondadori Store also supports readers and users through entertainment, events and multi-channel services. The special attention placed on organising meetings with writers, singers and performing artists, workshops and activities for children (also online) has made it possible to increase the number of places to meet and opportunities to involve and interact with local customers. This has made Mondadori Bookstores an important landmark for culture and entertainment, making a difference with its responsiveness and ever-innovative offers. The Mondadori Group network is active on four sales channels: direct sales, franchising, the Internet and book club.