Spotlight Reviews

A real nuts-and-bolts guide to making money, December 3, 2005
Reviewer: Michael J Edelman (Huntington Woods, MI USA) - See all my reviews
There are untold thousands of books on the market that promise the buyer a way to make money. Most just provide an outline, or some ideas that the author claims will produce guaranteed millions, buying distressed properties, government surplus, whatever. Some are by successful business owners, but don't really get into the details of running a business. And some are out-and-out frauds.

This book, though, is almost unique among how-to business books. It's written by a successful businessman, and it's a real, practical nuts-and-bolts guide to setting up an internet-based used book store. In fact, it's so detailed you have to wonder why the author is going to such pains to help set up his own competition.

There are chapters on where to buy books, what books to sell and which to avoid, how to grade books, the best selling venues, how to describe books, how to set up an inventory system, how to deal with problems- if you can't run a business using this book alone, you shouldn't be running a business, period.

Now reading this book won't guarantee you can make a successful go of an on-line used bookstore; you still need the kind of drive and perseverance that characterize all successful business owners. This isn't something you can make a go of in a few hours a week; it requires dedication. And you need to be flexible; I suspect that this business model won't be profitable forever, as the publishing market changes. But it's a good model for more than just books. I could see applying the same model to other used goods.

If you are, in fact, the kind of person who has the drive and the devotion to make a business work, and you're looking for a good business model to start with, you could do a lot worse than to get a copy of "The Home-Based Bookstore". I strongly suspect that this book will spawn a lot of new Internet entrepreneurs.
This one is TOPS and lets you hit the ground running, December 21, 2005
Reviewer: A. Corn "jcorn59483" (Indianapolis,, IN United States) - See all my reviews
Read this one and you WILL be able to hit the ground running. And I say that as someone who opened this book warily, knowing what it SHOULD contain- and hoping that it did. I'd been disappointed so many times before with similar books. This time, I wasn't disappointed.

My perspective is that of a former bookseller. When I started out, I'd bought ever book on the subject I could find. Even so, l had a steep learning curve because every single one of those books omitted important info.

THIS book is the one I should have had and it is the ONLY one I would have needed. It is very, very user-friendly, written in clear language and arranged in short sections that contain all the details yet are easy to read. There isn't a single word that is unnecessary. In short, the guy not only knows his business but knows how to pass on the info quickly and painlessly. It is a joy to read such a well-researched, concise volume which somehow manages to squeeze in all the important points about bookselling, from start to finish.

I was delighted to see that this volume not only included the basics (where to find books, what books to buy and which books to avoid like the plague) but also contained the kind of detailed info that most new sellers need but don't automatically know. In fact, I learned quite a bit myself, a reminder that no one is so experienced that a "refresher course" won't help.

I'd done quite well in the business myself and yet there was plenty of info I found here that I hadn't seen before (but wish I had). The sections on organizing your inventory, inventory software and using the newest innovations in wireless price lookups can save buyers needless time and energy. I adapted some of my own methods of book organization after reading this book.

ALL booksellers, new or experienced, could use a review of the info contained in the Taxes, Legal Requirements and Records section of the book.

Finally, the author doesn't contain only CURRENT info but gives readers a "heads up" about the future of bookselling, types of sales venues, etc, making the information not only timely but useful in the future as well.

Readers should look carefully at the sections on Amazon and Ebay, as the author gives an accurate comparison of the pros and cons of each venue (Amazon's "auction" format is defunct, for all practical purposes) and how each has changed over the years. His view is accurate, revealing how a single year can change everything in the online bookselling world. In another year, who knows? Things could change just as quickly.

With this book, you ought to be able to stay on top of the learning curve.
Informative and well-written, December 19, 2005
Reviewer: E. A. Lovitt "starmoth" (Gladwin, MI USA) - See all my reviews
Everyone who sells books on the internet would benefit from reading Steve Weber's "The Home-Based Bookstore." My husband and I began to sell books through this site (the 800 pound gorilla of online book sales) when we ran out of room on our shelves to store our latest acquisitions. We sold over $700 worth of books this year, without even breathing hard, out of a stock of around 200 books (some of them are duds).

This author started selling books as a hobby in 2001, made enough to quit his day job and has sold more than $1 million dollars worth of used books since then. In this book, he teaches us how to do the same.

"The Home-Based Bookstore" is lucidly written and well-organized--one of the best how-to books I've ever had the pleasure of reading--and it is packed with everything you will need to know. There were many surprises for me, especially in the categories of books that sell, how to store your books, and the types of automation tools that are available.

The information that Weber covers is divided into the following sections: "Where to find books;" "What books to buy;" "Where to sell books;" "Grading and pricing books;" "Focus on service;" "Your fulfillment system" (including a practical method for storing your stock--I'd been storing my books in boxes and basically memorizing which box they were in. Not very practical); "Collectible books;" "Advanced Automation;" "Online Postage;" "Taxes, legal requirements, records;'" and "The future of bookselling."

Useful appendices, a glossary of terms, and an index round out the book.

I hope the author is wrong about the future of 'brick and mortar' bookstores, because I still love a good browse through their stock. Often I find books I didn't know I was looking for, which is something that is still hard to do online. Other than this slight murmur of distress, I can whole-heartedly recommend this book.
Super Guide For Those Considering Selling Books On The Internet , December 17, 2005
Reviewer: Irvin Goodman - See all my reviews
This is a great 165 page, quick read, essential for everyone considering breaking into the on-the-internet book sales business. It really provides most everything you need to know, to help you make an appropriate decision whether this business is for you or not. All aspects of the business are covered, both positives and negatives. Like any business, all is not peaches and cream, and it's doubtful that you will become rich overnight !! For the novice to bookselling, I highly recommend that you read this book, before you take any steps to establish your new business. It will save you time and money and help you avoid much grief !!
I f You Sell Books You Must Have A Copy Of This Book And Keep It By Your Computer, December 13, 2005
Reviewer: Gloria J. Kaiser "" (Phoenix, AZ USA) - See all my reviews
This book is a must have for anyone who sells books. This book addresses issues such as how to handle dissatisfied customers, how to resolve delivery mistakes, what to do if you get a bad rating. The resources are up to date and useful. Steve also has a section for those who sell collectible books, and important information about taxes, legal requirements and records. Well written and understandable for all sellers at all levels. Get a copy read it and keep it by your computer for reference.
An Introduction to Online Bookselling, December 13, 2005
Reviewer: Robin Friedman (Washington, D.C. United States) - See all my reviews
I was pleased and flattered when Steve Weber, the author of "The Home-Based Bookstore," a guide to selling used books over the Internet, invited me to review his book. Judging from the reviews of his book, he is showing the same drive and spirit in seeking out readers as he has shown in establishing his bookselling business. There is, indeed, a valuable lesson to be learned from this alone.

Mr. Weber tells the reader that he entered the business of used bookselling over the web some five years ago with an initial investment of $80.00. Within two months, he was able to leave his job (he doesn't say what he had been doing) and enter the world of online bookselling full time. He points out the undisputed virtue of being in a business one loves and that is valuable to others, taking control of one's future, accepting risks, and bettering oneself. In an opening "Warning and Disclaimer" to the book and throughout the short text, Mr Weber points out the difficulties and uncertainties of online bookselling, and the hard work and good luck required to attain success.

In successive chapters, Mr. Weber discusses the best sources for used books, the types of books most likely to find demand over the internet, pricing books, sources for selling books (sites such as Amazon or one's own website), filling and tracking custormer orders, responding to complaints, automating one's system, taking care of postage, handling, and inventory, special considerations applicable to "collectible" books, and much else.

Besides introducing the online book business, the book includes information about Amazon and the intricacies of navigating its site that I found interesting. For example, Mr. Weber explains what Amazon's sales ranking for a book (for example 10,000) translates into in terms of weekly sales. He also, kindly, discusses the influence Amazon's amateur reviewers, frequently exercise in determining whether a book succeeds commercially.

The book is short and appealingly written. Probably one of the most useful features to anyone contemplating entering the business are the detailed lists of online venues to sell books, automation services, remainder book dealers, book wholesalers, and shipping supply vendors. It is undoubtedly useful to have all this information in one place.

I don't think online selling will ever replace the ambience, feel of books, and opportunity to browse and reflect provided by a walk-in used book store. But online selling has distinct values and virtues of its own. Steve Weber has written a good guide.

Robin Friedman
Well written and even-handed look at the used book business, December 12, 2005
Reviewer: booksforabuck "" (Dallas) - See all my reviews
People who read voraciously, as I do, end up with with their houses full of books. If you take the books to a used bookstore, you'll be lucky to get a penny on the dollar you paid. So, what's the answer? Beginning a few years ago, the Internet became a huge part of book sales--and used books exploded from being a tiny niche part of the market to being one of the fastest-growing elements. I'm sure I'm not alone in wondering whether this should be a business I could address. After all, I've got thousands of books--many of them wonderful. Somebody is making money on Amazon and other Internet venues. So, what would it take to make this a successful business for me?

If you've been asking yourself this kind of question, THE HOME-BASED BOOKSTORE by Steve Weber is a critical resource. Weber mentions his own experience (he was able to quit his paid job, move into a house from an apartment, and supports himself selling books), but the real meat of the book is dealing with the real issues of on-line used book sales. Weber brings up real issues--like customer insistence on paying for the cheapest postage, then complaining when the book doesn't arrive promptly--and suggests strategies for dealing with them. In order, Weber discusses how to buy books, what kind of books to buy (and critically what kind of books to avoid), how to describe your books for maximum customer satisfaction, how to organize your collection for minimal handling time, and the many automation tools available to Internet-based used book sellers.

Like many self-help books, parts of THE HOME-BASED BUSINESS turn into lists of features in different packages rather than a real critical analysis of what is best or worst. In a list of software with prices ranging from free to more than a hundred dollars a month, it would be useful to have discussion of whether the free software does the job. In contrast, Weber's discussion of the merits of media mail vs. priority mail, and how to get delivery confirmation for 13 cents vs. 50 cents standard are exactly what the prospective book-seller needs.

Unlike some self-employment books that overly hype their subject, Weber brings balance to his analysis. Sure he talks up the opportunity, but he also mentions the volumes needed to generate revenue, the requirements to achieve positive customer feedback (including daily trips to the post office), and the risks involved in getting stuck with unsalable inventory. THE HOME-BASED BOOKSTORE answered my questions for me. I now believe it's possible to make a living selling books on the Internet--and that doing so is not how I want to spend my time. Definitely a good return on investment for me.
Unique content that is well written, December 11, 2005
Reviewer: Jack D. Herrington "engineer and author" (Silicon Valley, CA) - See all my reviews
That author obviously knows what he is writing about with this book. It's a short book that is clear and straight to the point. It's only flaws are that it sometimes he takes it too far as some chapters come out like long bullet point lists. But that's a minor complaint. The book is well written and informative.
What a pleasant surprise!, December 10, 2005
Reviewer: Sarah Luciani (Phoenix, AZ) - See all my reviews
Steve Weber's book is an absolute must for those with an interest in bookselling, or those active in the market today. I have sold books online on and off for several years, and have always had a strong interest in the subject. I have read several books with a similar intent, but even at their time of publishing they seemed dated to me.Mr. Weber has done his homework. He is up to date on all the new advances and tools in this vast market.

One of the great things about this book is that some taboo questions are answered. If you are a new seller, one thing you may quickly learn is You are going to get shot down with the infamous question, "Where can I obtain good quality books to sell?". Mr. Weber has given me some new ideas that I never would have thought about. He also has great recommendations on selling good quality books, how to recognize the duds (material that will not sell), and recommendations on when to cull your material. He has excellent suggestions on how to specifically deal with the bookselling market, this is not a broad, general book on sales. If you happen to sell books on line, you may know the all too familiar questions that come up, "Why has my book taken so long?" "How can I get a refund?"

As a seller, he recognizes the importances of maintaining a positive feedback rating,and gives some great ideas on how to do this. Interested in some Wholesale distrubitors? There is a vast array in the back. Thought you knew about all the seller tools available? You may be wrong. There are a lot more than I knew existed. Thought about creating a SKU (organizational system) as your book shelves are growing, he has some excellent ideas. Even if you have been selling for awhile and do have a broad knowledge of the many items available sometimes (as happens to all) We lose our motivation. This book gave me that spark I needed again to get things going. Yes, YOU can make money selling books online. It is work, it is rewarding, but this book is a wonderful, highly recommended place to start.

You Can Do It!, December 9, 2005
Reviewer: H. Cota "takingadayoff" (Las Vegas, Nevada) - See all my reviews
I used to dream of owning a secondhand bookshop. But lately, my favorite used bookstores (Wessex in Menlo Park, Old Capitol in Monterey) have been closing down. It makes you wonder how a small shop like that can stay in business at all with fixed costs such as rent, taxes, and utilities. It doesn't seem possible to make a living running such a shop. If you could eliminate those costs, as well as advertising and pilferage, you could really have a chance of making money. And that is exactly what internet bookselling has done for thousands of would-be bookshop owners.

If you have already started selling used books on Amazon or eBay, you know firsthand much of what author and bookseller Steven Weber has to tell you in The Home-Based Bookstore. You know about the Sellers' Discussion Board on Amazon and you will have learned about packing and shipping. But chances are, he has a few tricks up his sleeve that you haven't stumbled on yet. For instance, the web address to download the current list of buyers waiting books on Amazon is worth the price of the book alone.

And as much fun as it can be to wade through the bickering and ramblings of the discussion board, reading Weber's book is a much quicker way to get information from a pro. His chapter on the future of online bookselling is interesting as well.

The Home-Based Bookstore is a concise, complete, and honest guide to online used bookselling for both beginners and old hands. I would have liked Weber to give his opinion or personal experiences about various websites and products, but it is understandable that he would want to stay impartial. I'll step out on a limb here, though and say that this is a better book than Windwalker's. Windwalker's book is good, but aimed more at the new bookseller, while I think even pros can get something from Weber's book.
Valuable tips and not just for selling books, December 9, 2005
Reviewer: Charles Ashbacher "(" (Hiawatha, Iowa United States( - See all my reviews
The advent of the web has generated many opportunities. One that many have taken advantage of is the ability to develop and manage an online business. The literature and news media is full of examples of people who are selling some type of wares on e-bay and other online auction sites. Weber has followed in the footsteps of Jeff Bezos and in developing an online bookstore. Bezos was a visionary when he realized that people would be eager to purchase new books online and then experienced a second flash of genius when Amazon developed the structure so that anyone could sell their used books online.

Weber is one of those who have been very successful in doing this and he shares his strategies in this book. He spends almost no time in demonstrating how to set up an Amazon account, which is not a significant omission. It is so easy to set up such an account that it would have been largely redundant to have included how to create such an account.

The strategy for a successful retail business is rather simple. Find a sufficient and affordable source of inventory and then sell it at a price that earns a suitable profit. Weber gives you some very sensible and effective tips on how to do both. His points about how to set the price for your product and how to cull your inventory are excellent. He also lists out many web sites other than Amazon that can be used to aid your selling of books. These tips are the most significant in the book, as there are some that were totally unexpected.

While it is true that the tips are about the selling of books, many of them can also be applied to other products. Well worth the price, it is a book you should read if you are running or contemplating the start of an Internet based business.

Excellent Advice and No Rosy Glasses. Highly recommended, December 8, 2005
Reviewer: B. Marold (Bethlehem, PA United States) - See all my reviews
`The Home-Based Bookstore' is written by Steve Weber, who solicited this review from me and supplied me with a copy of his book. I expect this will not influence my review, but it is good for you to know this up front.

Before I opened this book, I posed some questions I thought the book should answer. These questions, with the author's response follow:

1. What are the criteria for choosing, eBay, or one's own site for selling a particular title?

The author clearly prefers Amazon over most other options, although he gives some good reasons for setting up your own web page.

2. How do you pick titles to sell? Some obvious examples, such as Stephen King hardcovers are really poor second hand sellers.

The author gives some very general suggestions on which titles to pick and which titles to avoid. I agree with him almost entirely, although I can think of some exceptions to most of his titles to avoid; however, that is based on special knowledge of certain fields such as cookbooks.

3. How do you acquire interesting titles cheaply? Whenever I browse a second hand bookstore, 99 out of 100 titles are pure junk. I have yet to find, for example, an important out of print cookbook at any used bookstore.

The author provides many good sources, including every one I could think of, plus one or two I did not think of.

4. How do you track your stock so you can quickly determine whether or not you have a title OR where you may be able to acquire a title for a book hunter.

The author gives many useful answers to this question, including some new technology options that really surprised me, based on accessing the Internet through your cell phone.

5. What is the best shipping option considering cost versus speed?

The author gives some very good analyses on the advantages and disadvantages of fast versus slow delivery options.

6. Is there any value to branching out to recordings?

The author never once discusses how to apply his suggestions to other merchandise, even though he does go so far as to consider expanding an Internet sales operation to a brick and mortar store.

One of the reasons the author does not deal with other goods is that marketing books through the Internet is so much richer a subject than I imagined, in spite of the fact that I am a major customer of these services. The amount of software written to support this enterprise is staggering.

In a nutshell, Mr. Weber has given us an excellent manual on how to do this very specialized, albeit very popular form of Internet marketing.

The first sure sign that Steve was not pulling the wool over our eyes was when he stated that while this activity can be really rewarding, it is still hard work. The plus side is that you get to keep all the rewards of this hard work.

Since running a bookstore was always one of my secret ambitions, I really appreciated almost everything Weber had to say about this adaptation of the corner bookstore. If I were to point out any one thing where the author was light on his recommendations, it would be with the fact that I think a person who really knows and loves books in the first place will do much better than the average entrepreneur. I suspect that one could get into real estate investing without a good knowledge of law, carpentry, or finance, but unlike houses, books are something which not everyone knows well. One test for an aspiring book merchandising operation would be to name the leading textbook authors in statistics, economics, symbolic logic, and organic chemistry. I cite these because Mr. Weber makes the excellent point that non-fiction books hold their value much better than fiction, especially current popular fiction. The author does not point this out, but a major exception to this rule should be manuals on computer software. No one has any use anymore for a text on Multiplan, dBase III, or Wordpro.

I especially liked Mr. Weber's recommendation that the reader consider specializing in a particular field, such as cookbooks. This is an especially good suggestion as everyone must eat and so everyone needs someone to cook for him or her. It is also a good field as there is a rich bibliography of out of print cookbooks which most foodies would love to have access to, such as English writer Jane Grigson's catalogue.

While Mr. Weber does not deal with any other type of goods, I suggest his suggestions would work almost as well for records, toys, or collectibles in general, as long as you know your subject.

I am very happy Mr. Weber provided his book to me for review as it is very unlikely I would have found it on my own, and it is an especially fertile plot of ideas, suggestions, and guidance regarding this enterprise. I am happy for him that he got his work into print when he did.
Essential Tools Of The Trade, December 8, 2005
Reviewer: L. Shirley "Laurie's Boomer Views" (fountain valley, ca United States) - See all my reviews
Anybody that has ever made a purchase at Amazon, may have seen a link provided that says, Sell Your Purchases, or while perusing the used books for sale, have seen the link to Sell Yours Here. You may have thought about reselling some of the many books on your shelves, but maybe you were a little leery about taking the plunge in the big ocean of used book sales. Even still, maybe you have dipped your toe in, sold an old text book or two, and are wondering if you could really make a go out of selling books from home. You could go through all your books and pick out the one you can part with, but then what? Where do you get books for sale? How do you know which ones will sell and turn a profit? What about shipping costs,listing the books in proper condition,and keeping an inventory? How to deal with the occasional unhappy customer? So many questions, and so much research to do, before you decide whether making it a full time job is right for you.

"The Home-Based Bookstore" by Steve Weber, will answer those questions for you and much more. Weber, a successful book seller at Amazon, imparts his experience and has given you the essential tools of the trade you will need to get started. Learning how to grade and price books, customer service, how to keep shipping costs down,an idea of what sort of books to stock in your inventory, and good places to find them. Time saver ideas that will come in very handy as your business grows, a chapter on legal requirements and taxes is most informative for the full-time seller, and there is even a glossary of terms you need to get used to and use in the listing process an so forth. It's all here. And what's more Weber has taken the time to research and list many valuable sites for you to explore further as you gain experience.

The book is a well written and easy to understand reference book. An interesting and enlighten read. Read it straight through, and then keep it close by as you start your business. Although eBay and other selling sites are touched upon in this book, the main focus is on Amazon, which is the most popular place for buying and selling single books.

Mr Weber has given the new seller some very valuable information.It's a book that will more then pay for itself in a short time. Highly recommended!

Go For It.....Laurie
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:

A "must read" if you are an online bookseller (or want to be)..., December 7, 2005

Reviewer: Thomas Duff (Portland, OR United States) - See all my reviews
Yes, I play around with selling a bit on Amazon. I've done OK, but I've had to learn as I went. Now everything I should have known up front is in a nice concise book... The Home-Based Bookstore - Start Your Own Business Selling Used Books on Amazon, eBay, or Your Own Web Site by Steve Weber. Bottom line, you need this book if selling books is something you're interested in...

Contents: Why Online Bookselling?; Where to Find Books; What Books to Buy; Where to Sell Books; Grading and Pricing Books; Focus on Service; Your Fulfillment System; Collectible Books; Advanced Automation; Online Postage; Taxes, Legal Requirements, Records; The Future of Bookselling; Remainder Book Wholesalers; New Book Wholesalers; Shipping Supply Vendors; Amazon Best Practices; More Resources; Further Reading; Glossary; Index

The author contacted me and asked if I'd be interested in reviewing this book. Since it's a subject of interest to me, I gladly accepted. I'm so glad I did. Weber has condensed down a tremendous amount of hard-earned wisdom and advice into a concise 167 pages. If you've never sold books online before, you'll quickly learn why it's an appealing hobby (or a full-time business like it is for him). You'll also get started off on the right foot in terms of picking your selling avenues as well as making sure you have a satisfied customer base. If you're already a seller, there's also tips and techniques you can use to take your selling to a new level. For instance, maintaining an inventory of 10 to 20 books for sale is no big deal. But what if you have 100 to 200? How do you quickly find the right book (or the right copy of the book) that was purchased? He explains a SKU system that is simple in concept but that would work and scale with no problems. There are also plenty of references to other sites and vendors that offer tools you can use, like software to look up Amazon pricing via a wireless connection so you can decide whether to spend $5 on a book at an estate sale that might be worth 10 times that on Amazon. And you can find out *now*!

Even more impressive to me (as a person who reviews a *lot* of books) is that this is a self-published title. Most authors who go that route end up with a book that either is rough when it comes to presentation and editing, or they just don't have enough of an audience to justify the involvement of a major publisher. In this case, I found the writing to be smooth and the content to be solid. Every chapter is useful and deserves to be there. If this had been labeled a "Pocket Guide" or "Dummies" series title, I don't think the writing style and content would have to have been modified much. It's obvious that Weber is not only just a successful seller, but he also reads and understands the art of writing.

Obviously, this isn't the type of book that will appeal to everyone. If your life doesn't revolve around books (like mine does), the concept of selling a book or two every couple of months on Amazon probably doesn't cause you any excitement. But if this type of activity appeals to you in the least, The Home-Based Bookstore is the place to start... Highly recommended.
Excellent new guide, December 7, 2005
Reviewer: Kimberley Wilson (VA USA) - See all my reviews
Steve Weber began his online used bookstore in a small apartment as a sideline. Now it's a thriving business and he tells how, if you're willing to work hard, do the research, and make the extra effort in customer service,you can do the same.

This is not a quick overview of the industry. Weber really gets into the nitty gritty of online bookselling. He tells you which sites are the best places to list your books. He is specific about where should you get your stock and what places to avoid. He tells you waht books sell well and what books are gauranteed to just sit unsold on your shelf. He tells how you figure out how to price your books and he tells you how to describe the book in the online description.

Weber writes in a pleasant, highly readable style. Much to my delight he heavily emphasizes doing right by the customer. I once bought a used book that was listed as being in excellent condition. The book I got was heavily foxed, had a grease stain on one of the pages and smelled of cigarettes. I never bought anything from that seller again. Weber makes it clear that being straight with the customers is not only a good thing to do but it's good business.

Whether you sell a book once a month or whether you're so busy that the folks at the post office know you by name do yourself and your potential customers a favor and buy this book and study it.
Very useful information for anyone considering a business in selling used books, December 5, 2005
Reviewer: Craig Matteson (Ann Arbor, MI) - See all my reviews
This is a handy book for anyone who is even slightly considering getting into the (used) book selling business. The author, Steve Weber, is not only in that business, but he also published this book. I enjoy the way he lays out what a novice would need to know about the nature of the business, where it is today, and that he is honest and open about how very competitive it is.

Even though he shares good information about what to look for in acquiring inventory, he cannot supply the reader with talent. And in an extremely competitive industry, it is talent plus hard work that will lead to success. Someone who works hard, but can't develop a real feel for what will sell and what will become deadwood is still doomed. They simply cannot make enough money to overcome the financial weight of inventory that will not move profitably. The concepts needed to understand the quality and value of the books being considered for purchase for inventory and what prospective buyers will require are all accurate and quite useful.

Weber shares great information about the places a home operator could sell his inventory and the strengths and weaknesses of each. He also helps the prospective seller understand how to focus on her business as a service and what kinds of standards she should expect to live up to.

This is a very useful book. It is easy to read and will help the novice get a good footing in considering building this kind of business. All I would like to add is a strong word of caution to the inexperienced. Take some initial tours of the sources for purchasing books that the author recommends. Make sure you have a real eye for buying the right inventory properly and then sell a few first to make sure that you understand the whole process before you take the big plunge.
Must own book for the avid book buyer/seller, December 4, 2005
Reviewer: Beth Hartford-DeRoos "motherlodebeth" (Jackson, California) - See all my reviews
As someone who buys new and used books via I found this book to be of great value because as he notes on page 35-36 'The biggest advantage for Amazon sellers is that used merchandise is displayed right alongside Amazons new items. So buyers looking for new books discover the used and collectible items at the same time.' Now I admit I usually buy new from Amazon unless its an out of print or extremely expensive book that I need to own, but looks don't matter that much.

The book is also helpful for the beginner because it spells out the fees that Amazon, eBay and others charge for selling on their sites. This is great since it can be hard to follow all the directions some sites have so having this book as a guide makes the journey easier. Common sense also will tell you that just as the Internet changes as fast as it comes out with something new, so do many of the book selling sites. Which is why I see this book as a guide not an end all bible.

Also like how he shares how books should be rated when put up for sale 'As new. This term is to be used only when the book is in the same perfect condition as published. It is to have no defects, missing pages, or library stamps, and the dust jacket (if issued) must be in mint condition.' As a buyer of used books I only wish I had know these definitions earlier. But am sure glad I know them now.

His Focus On Service chapter should be mandatory reading for anyone selling anything online! He write in great detail about shipping choices both domestic and international and I learned something new myself where he writes about how long media mail takes for those who live in Hawaii and Alaska (easily 4-6 weeks).

His Advanced Automation chapter is packed with information and Internet sites that offer pricing and inventory software for the serious seller. Same with his next chapter dealing with Online Postage. And the vast amount of information the author shares on who all is selling on Amazon, eBay etc. makes the book a serious must own book for any serious book buyer.

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