A Review of Heroes’ Reserve Policy

October 10, 2019 at 3:28 pm By:

In a few months, Heroes Aren’t Hard to Find will celebrate our 40th Anniversary. For the majority of our four decades, Heroes’ founder Shelton Drum has utilized a reserve system to make sure our regular customers secure the comics they want. As we wind down 2019 and approach this Heroes milestone, we want to take the opportunity to remind you what it means to be a reserve customer, and what that commitment entails.

The process of ordering new comics is far from an exact science. Even though we spend countless hours working to tighten our numbers, it’s common for us to accumulate hundreds of dollars worth of unsold comics from cancelled reserve customers each week. In other words, even if our order numbers are perfect, we still lose money every week because of delinquent reserve customers. 

The comics we stock are non-returnable. We don’t receive refunds from our distributor for comics that don’t sell. Back in the early decades of Heroes Aren’t Hard to Find, purchasing books with cover prices of 35-75 cents wasn’t such a huge risk, but in an era where cover prices range anywhere from $4.99 – $9.99, unsold product can mean a death sentence for many comic shops. 

The Reserve System:

  • As a reserve customer, you must have 10 or more regular monthly titles on your reserve list to qualify for the discount of 10% on new comics.
    Mini series and one shots do not count toward your 10 titles. You must purchase everything in your reserve bag when you check out in order to qualify for the discount. If you do not purchase all the items in your reserve bag when you check out, you will not receive the discount.
  • Trade paperbacks and hardcovers will not be held in your reserve bag unless they are from a Previews order or a  special ordered item.
  • Back issues cannot be held in your reserve bag. Your reserve bag is not a place to store books for possible purchase at a later date. 
  • We expect every reserve customer to stop by and pick up their reserved comics at least once a month. If we do not see or hear from you by the end of each month, we will attempt to contact you via phone or email. We reserve the right to cancel a customer’s bag at any time after that month, at our discretion. If you will be out of town for a period of time and will be unable to collect your reserve for a period of time longer than one month, simply let us know and we will save your books for you. If you are moving out of town, simply let us know so that we can cancel your bag before months worth of books accumulate and cost us money.
  • Your reserve list should be used for comics you are fully committed to purchasing month in and month out. If we repeatedly observe you putting certain books from your reserve bag back on the rack, we will assume that you are not committed to that title and will remove it from your list. 

We order comics 2 – 4 months before they become available for sale. If there is an increased number of people who add a specific title to their list after the initial order is placed (i.e. House of X and Powers of X), we cannot always guarantee that every request will be filled. We will honor orders based on when a title was added to a customer’s list, or when the request was received. You can update your reserve list in the store, or by emailing Elias@heroesonline.com.

Utilizing the PREVIEWS Catalog:
It is important to remember that Previews orders are an excellent way to ensure that you will receive a book that you want. Previews orders are due at the same time we place our initial order, which is usually the third week of each month. Placing a Previews order is the best way for you to secure an issue that you want to try, but not yet ready to add to your reserve list. This is also how to secure a trade paperback or hardcover that you’re afraid might sell out before you make it to the store. (Plus Previews is full of Statues, Action-Figures and other items that you can order!)

Calling to reserve a book on the week it is released (or the night before) is NOT a guarantee that you will receive that book. If it’s not already on your list, that request will only be honored based on availability. We will honor requests based on when we receive them. If you already have a book on your list or placed a Previews order, you will be at the top of the list to receive it.

We reserve the right to limit quantities on any item, and make those decisions at our own discretion.

It’s important to remember that you can help yourselves by staying plugged in to what titles are on your reserve list, and by giving yourself a few minutes to flip through each month’s new Previews catalog at the front of the store. We understand that not everyone wants to do the ‘work’ of paying close attention to these things, and that many people simply enjoy coming in and being surprised by new books on the shelves. As comic fans ourselves, we enjoy that too. There will always be great new books available each week that you weren’t aware even existed. 

We are in the business of selling comics, and we rely on observable data to help us do that. We will not order a book with the hope that an extra 25 – 100 people might show up to buy copies. Those are hypothetical sales at best, and we can’t operate a business on those. Staying up to date with your reserve list is your responsibility and burden. We will maintain it to your specifications, but we can’t speculate on whether or not you will want every new relaunch of a title just because you’ve read a similar title in the past. It’s up to you to know what is on your reserve list, to know what upcoming books you might be interested in, and to know what is in your reserve bag. 

With next year being our 40th Anniversary, we know we wouldn’t have reached this marker without our loyal customer base. The comics industry has changed in innumerable ways since Shelton first opened the doors to Heroes Aren’t Hard to Find. There really are comics for everyone of every age and background right now, which is something we love about the state of today’s comics.  Now more than ever there are countless new titles, relaunches, mini series, and one shots being published each week. There is also a wider array of both critically acclaimed comics and an explosion of speculative buyers to navigate in today’s industry. You can help us by regularly updating and purchasing your reserve bag, and by utilizing the Previews catalog each month to make sure you get the comics you want.  We appreciate you sticking with us and helping us continue to fine tune our operations as we enter a celebratory year for us at Heroes.


Filed Under: Uncategorized

  • www.flickr.com