With the advent of online shopping, many local comic stores have struggled to stay afloat. The local comic book shop is the lifeblood of comic book sales and without these stores, the world of comic books would be much smaller. These small and large stores all across the country take in the daily sales that keep the publishers afloat.
These seeming small stores have also started to hold a bit of clout in the comic book industry. They have started an organization just for the small business owners the world over in Comics Pro. This organization holds meetings, seminars, and gives resources to business owners all over in an effort to solidify their market base. They hold an annual meeting and also meet with publishers to share their concerns to help mold and shape the industry.
The rise in digital sales have hurt some comic store, but some digital distributors, like Comixology, have tried to find ways to help comic shops with additional online resources that funnel patrons into their businesses and help them select their comics. The future of how comic books are read and distributed is a bit murky, but it is safe to say that the friendly local comic shop is not going away anytime soon. The market is still viable for these stores and the publisher's fate is tied to them as well.