13 Places to Find Used and New Books to Sell Online


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It’s been said books are everywhere. This is very true. We have some ideas of where you can find inventory even if you don’t have what you think is a local source to find books. Here are thirteen suggestions:

1. Your own shelves: what are you and your family ready to declutter and share with others? This is a great place to start with and to learn the ropes of selling books online. Your inventory is free, and as you sell your books you build feedback.

2. Yard Sales: what are your neighbors ready to declutter and share with others? My husband loves stopping at the yard sales. Many teachers and students are just dropping their wares for cash to buy their new inventory. Collectors many times are downsizing, as well.

3. Thrift stores: become friends with the staff. If you learn the book stocking schedule then you are ahead of the curve and will save scads of time.

4. Used bookstores: many accept your books in trade, and so it can be a good place to trade in books that don’t sell well for those that do. This is an excellent way to complete a series, or to add books to a lot. If you have your scanner you may be surprised how many gems you can find
on the shelves. Offline inventory often doesn’t sell the same as online inventory.

5. http://www.PaperBackSwap.com is a site where you can trade in your paperbacks for more titles you don’t have. Users list their books, and when one is requested, they mail it out. When it is received, they are given one book credit, which they can then use to request another book. Membership is free as of this writing.

6. Antique stores: for the experienced. If you are used to buying a book for a buck, and selling it for $20, then the next step — buying a book for $50, and selling it for $100, may not be a far reach. If you think about the percentages a bigger investment can pay off better than a small investment. Do your research though since the risk is much greater.

7. Flea Markets: be careful that you know your pricing as it can be overwhelming in that you may have lots and lots of older books you come upon at the flea market and dealers do have a tendency to take their left over can’t sell online stock there. We’ll cover older books and value later in this report.

8. Live auctions: a great place to pick up books. This lends particularly well to the antique and vintage book market. You need to know what you’re doing though. You can even go to the preview and go look up titles if you are uncertain or phone a friend for information. This is where the live auctions do help because you have some preparation time. Find your local auctions here http://www.auctionzip.com/

9. School library discards, private and public: get to know your local librarian, or teachers. Tell them that you would love to help recycle any library discards. Children’s books which were written many years ago can be very collectible, even as ex-library books.

10. Dollar Stores: keep your eyes open; An acquaintance has found multiple copies of the first If you like what you have found in this report, please take a look at our service to better your chances of succeeding with selling books online. An acquaintance found multiple copies of first editions of Stephen King’s On Writing, which sold for way more than a dollar a book. There are several examples of this scenario.

11. eBay: once you know what you are looking for, it can be a great way to buy inventory that you can turn around and sell for a better profit with a more professional listing or on another venue. This is known as ‘arbitrage’. Defined: arbitrage is the practice of taking advantage of a price differential between two or more markets.

12. Other online sources: Deeply discounted (‘remaindered’) overstock books at lower than wholesale prices. A remainder mark is a way that publishers mark books that they are passing on to overstock dealers, so that they cannot be sold for full price. It can range from a hole punched in the cover, to a line through the ISBN, to a mark on the page edges. If you see such a mark on a book you are selling make sure to note it in your description. It may be a black mark through on the page outside block or a dot or other markings that are placed there by the publisher.

13. Book Sales: This has been deliberately left for my last sourcing place since it is one of the best. Book sales are typically sponsored by Friends of the Library (FOL) organizations at public and university libraries. Some churches and sororities and other organizations also sponsor book sales. They are almost always volunteer-run efforts, and proceeds support their organizations. Befriending and treating the volunteers with respect will pay over and over in many dividends. Some libraries have an ongoing sale in a designated area that is open when the library is open like a shop, and others only hold periodic large book sales. Offerings may include donated and/or withdrawn library books; CDs and audiotapes; DVDs & videos; magazines & other paper ephemera; and computer software.

Here’s where to find many of your local library book sales http://wwwbooksalefinder.com , but be sure to call around to your local and not so local libraries to get unadvertised sale dates. Keep your eyes open for announcements of sales at the libraries around the community, also, and register for the free newsletter at: http://www.booksalefinder.com/salemail.html. You will receive personalized announcements of upcoming sales.

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About Julie Schultz

My name is Julie Anna Schultz. I live in rural upstate NY. I have eleven children, one husband, three chickens, a bunny and a dog. Not acquired in that order. :) Since 2002, I’ve been teaching people how to buy and sell children’s collectible books online. Learn More

One Response to “13 Places to Find Used and New Books to Sell Online”

  1. Great list