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Spring Cleaning or Hobby: How to Make Money on Your Used Books


If you find you are addicted to buying used or old books, but your hobby is getting the better of you, there is a way to make some money while doing a little spring cleaning of your bookshelf. Although you will not get rich from selling your books, it is a nice way to make a little extra money while making room for some new arrivals to your collection. If you are not sure how to start or even go about the online selling of your used books, keep reading for some simple suggestions about online book sales.


There are several different venues available to you that will help you in making some cash for your used books. Each one is a little different and has its own drawbacks and benefits. Explore all of them to see which works best for you. In the meantime here is a brief overview of what you need to know and where to go to get you started.

ISBN, Book Title and Condition

In order to Sell Books Online, make sure your books have an ISBN number. For almost every site that sells books, the ISBN and often the title as well are required. This information will allow the site you are using to determine the current circulation of the book you are selling, as well as what others are asking for it.

Also, helpful is if you make note of the condition of the books you are planning to sell. Purchasers will need to know the status of the book they are buying. Does it have a torn cover? Or is it like brand new?

Online Venues

Once you have established that the books you are considering are in the right condition for sale, you need to find an online venue through which to sell your items. There are several companies that will help you to sell online. Amazon, Powell’s, Abe and are some of the sites you can go to for selling used books.

The drawback to using the services of these companies, who turn around and sell your product, is that your profit is not as impressive. The benefit is that you do not have to wait until each book sells, having to handle all of the administration and processing that it takes.

Do not Re-invent the Wheel

A good practice is to talk to others who are currently selling online. Often they will recommend that you keep a detailed inventory of all your books, the ISBN and condition of the book. Devote a particular area of your home to this collection so that you can stay organized. Finally, always replenish your listings. Adding new titles will increase your likelihood of making a sale.

Wondering where to get more books? Yard sales, library book sales and local thrift stores are excellent sources for cheap books you can then sell for profit.

Most likely you will not make a profit large enough to support yourself. Selling your old books online however, can earn you some extra cash. A little spending money is always a good thing.

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