Here on MakeUseOf, we’ve made you aware of the various ways you can buy books cheaply online How To Find The Cheapest Books Online How To Find The Cheapest Books Online I’ve written before about my love for reading, but I also have a side of me that loves bargains and hates spending unnecessary coin. What’s a man to do when he wants to buy and... Read More , but just how do you go about selling them? How do you get a quick sale, and is it possible to get a rare or unusual book to sell for the right price?
For truly valuable and rare books, online booksellers are not the best place to find reliable information on achievable prices. These websites show the price a seller would like to achieve, not what a buyer is actually willing to pay. The seller has nothing to lose by asking a totally unachievable price in the hope of catching someone with more money than sense.
When I first got started, I really didn’t know what kind of books to look for.  So after doing a little bit of research, I discovered that modern day first editions are collectible!  A modern day first edition is simply the first edition of a recent publication (in the past 30 years or so).  First editions for books older than this will typically command even higher prices.
You just need to create an outline for the book to follow, set a schedule for when you’re going to write (if it’s original work) or when you’re going to work on it, how you will market the book and when each task needs to be done, and set a goal publication date when it will be offered on sale. It’s a matter of setting aside time each day. You can’t just work on this when you “feel” like it… otherwise, it’ll never get done.
One of the first questions that arises when contemplating selling books online is, how do I know which books will sell? A quick glance at eBay book listings might discourage you from selling them at all because, sadly, the majority of books offered for auction ultimately receive no bids whatsoever. This is why it's crucial that you do your homework before spending the time and energy to list a book for auction.
“I think the impact of people not having access to books or being able to enjoy books is huge,” Mullen says. That enthusiasm for reading is common among all of the used book sellers I spoke with. I don’t suppose it would be possible to devote so much effort to rescuing literature from oblivion without some affection for what’s being saved. “We want people to read,” Mike Ward says. “It doesn’t matter how you read or how you get your books. It just matters that you read.”
Next, I researched other methods of selling books. I had a roomful of used books stacked up everywhere, a lot invested, and a strong desire to get some of my money back. I found that you could resell them by comparing prices online from one bookstore to another, but the returns were pathetic. Pennies on the dollar. If you sell to bookstores, they buy them from you wholesale and resell them retail. They make money, but there’s no room in there for you to make a profit.

Colin Stephens, founder and director of Sunrise Books in England, was thumbing through a charity shop’s bookshelf when the manager told him how much she’d come to hate used books. Every few days, she complained, she would have to load the trunk of her car with the shop’s excess donations and shuttle them to the landfill, in her own spare time and at her own expense.


1. Purchase books that are in good condition, without marks in the text and without a remainder mark (a marked line) on the bottom edge of the pages. Hardback books that originally came with a cover need to have the cover. Paperback books are fine provided they are trade paper (the larger books) and not mass market (the books that are roughly the length and width of a checkbook). Also, it is important that any book you attempt to trade in at Hastings have a barcode on the back. While older books may sell on Amazon, they typically are not eligible for sales at Hastings.
You might end up getting more money from this system overall, since Amazon really just wants you to spend your money at Amazon, even if it’s money they give you. Just, like, try to buy a book from a local indie to even out your book-buying karma later. You can also sell books the traditional way on Amazon, by setting up a seller account and listing your books. If you do this, you’ll have to set up a product page for each book you plan to sell and wait for a buyer. This is totally doable, but it does take some commitment.
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