Selling Used Books Online

from the seems-to-work dept

Following yesterday’s story about authors being encouraged not to sell their books on Amazon, the NY Times has a column about a guy who is testing out selling his old books online. So far, it’s been quite a success. He first set a “control” price by taking the books he wanted to sell to the local used book store, where he was offered a grand total of $30 for 4 books. He put them online at Amazon and almost immediately sold one of the books for $24. He says he understands why authors would be worried. Of course, there have been used bookstores around for many many years – and yet you don’t see authors picketing them. I think this is overreacting on the part of the Authors Guild. Used books generate interest in their works from people who might not otherwise buy them. I know I’ve bought a number of cheap used books completely on a whim, which later led to me buying more new books by that same author.

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Comments on “Selling Used Books Online”

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thecaptain says:

Used books.

I agree with you, used books are a GREAT idea, especially with the prices on paperbacks going ever higher (I used to think 7.99 canadian was high a few years ago….now its 10.99 or even 12.99 in some cases). And browsing through a used book store is a great way to spend an afternoon too.
What these authors are not taking into consideration are the facts that:
1) a lot of people (I would think anyway..from talking to my other bookish friends) won’t buy used books from…I mean, if I’m gonna buy used, I can hunt around for it around here and save a lot more..
2) If I’m buying a used book, its already been sold, so they’ve already gotten a sale
3) Your point, that used book sales raise the visibility of the book AND the author..I don’t know how many times I’ve picked up a used book from an author unknown to me and after reading and enjoying it, went out and bought the rest of his books NEW.
4) Also, and admitedly this isn’t a large segment of the population, but I would think its significant that some people who buy and love books KEEP their books…for example, in most used bookstores, the sci-fi/fantasy selection is a little slim 🙂
All in all, Amazon selling used books on the same page as new ones shouldn’t be that big of a deal really….they may not get first sale royalties, but they DO get excellent advertising for themselves.

sb says:

Re: Used books.

BOTTOM LINE, SOMEONE is gonna become the KING used books online.; is already the leader. Used books online (usd ANYTHING online for that matter) is only starting….

AMZN knows they cant stop it. if you cant beat em, join em…. Yentas are only now getting the idea of buying used on the net.

hopefully, the days of crooked scam University bookstore GOUGING is OVER.

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