Thursday, November 15, 2012

A short guide to starting and running an online used book business


A short guide to starting and running an online book business, 

by eBay seller, Trent Crane


Used books are probably some of the easiest and most profitable items you can sell online today.  If you would like to work from home and enjoy running your own business, consider a used books business.

In the United States alone, nearly $8 Billion dollars worth of books are sold each year. Nearly $2 Billion dollars worth of those books are sold on eBay.com and Half.com.  Amazon will not release the book figures from its' sales, but it is expected to be over $1 Billion annually.  There is a lot of money being made here, wouldn't you like to be a part of it?

If you are interested in selling books on Amazon.com and eBay.com, there are a few things to know.

One of the easiest businesses that a person can have is selling books online.  Look around, have you noticed how many resellers of books have popped up in strip malls and near college campuses in recent years?  Well....it's because there is so much money to made in the used book industry.  It doesn't take much to get a used book business up and going either.  Normally, you can start for around $20-$100 dollars.  Anybody can do this.

Selling books online is super easy and failure is nearly impossible if you are willing to put in a little effort.

 The only reasons people could fail in this business:
  • Not willing to work, laziness.
  • They won't learn how it works.

Why should I Sell Used Books Online?

Let's take a look at the advantages:
  • Demand. People are always buying books.
  • Access. You probably have books lying around the house that you aren't using.
  • Books are easy to stack and easy to ship.
  • Discount shipping using media mail (specifically for books, and cheap).
  • Stores are always having clearance sales on books.
  • Where else can you buy an item for $0.25 or $0.75 and sell it for $10, $30, or $60+?
  • Putting them online is as easy as scanning a barcode with your smartphone!
  • Books don't take up a lot of space.
  • IT'S EASY.
Make money your first week


 I talk with people almost every day who are struggling to find the right items to sell online.  They are struggling because there are a lot of sellers who are selling the same items making high profit margins nearly impossible.  Used books may have some competition, but it doesn't matter, you can find used books just as easily as anyone else.  Even if you list the books you buy and you don't sell them for tons of profit, chances are you will at least break even and not lose money.  Try it out, what do you have to lose? Gain? 

Profit margins on used books are like none other

Okay, so you might be thinking, "I know nothing about books or which ones would sell."  Don't worry, I'll help you out below.  I always look up a book online before I buy it.  There are several apps out there for smartphones that have barcode scanners that allow you to see where else they are currently selling online, and for how much.  Also, read my article http://tinyurl.com/9gm927o to get more tips on how to research items and the prices that they have sold for in the past.

 The best books to sell online:



  • Cookbooks
  • College textbooks
  • How To books
  • Photography and Art
  • Legal books
  • Medical books
  • Books about cars, trains, trucks, airplanes, etc.
  • History books
  • Sports books
  • Children's books


 Now get out there and try it! 
Good Luck!
Please comment if you have any questions or need clarification.