Sell a textbook on amazon

How to Sell a Textbook on Amazon- Flip Your Book Now!

Are you an author? Or, do you have a collection of old textbooks that you no longer need?

You have a pretty good opportunity for making money – selling them on Amazon. In this post, you will learn how to sell textbooks on Amazon efficiently. If you’re a student in need of extra cash or just a person with some textbooks that are just lying around at home, we believe this post will be very helpful.

Can we share a little secret with you?

Being the end-of-classes months, May and December are the two months when textbook buyback booms. That doesn’t mean that you can’t sell textbooks during other months but be sure to take advantage of these two months.

So, to sell a textbook on Amazon, the first thing you need to do is create a seller account. After that, you will be able to either ship the textbooks through your own means or let Amazon do it for you through their Fulfillment by Amazon program.

If you have short time in hand you can watch this video to know details about selling books on amazon.

Let’s go through the step by step process of selling textbooks on Amazon.

1. Create a seller account

Go here to create a seller account. You can either choose to go for an individual account or a professional one, based on what suits you better. If you only have a few books to sell, an individual account fits you better.

The difference between an individual and a business account is that an individual account has no monthly charges while a professional one has a 39.99-dollar subscription fee. Another difference is that an individual one features a 0.99-dollar charge per sale as closing fee while a professional one has no closing fee.

Also, a professional account lets you use spreadsheets and feeds in managing your stock, and provides you with order reports while an individual one doesn’t.

On the page, you will see a “Register now” button; use it to create your seller account.

In the process of creating it, you will need to give an email address and choose a password, and you will also have to fill some basic info, including your name, preferred business name, physical address, billing info, and more.

Once you submit your details, you will be sent a confirmation email notifying you that your account has been created successfully.

2. Key in your payment info

To be able to receive payments, you’ll need to provide valid checking account info.

To do that, click on the “Account info” button under Settings. Once you follow the link, you’ll see a “Deposit Method” part. Click on “Edit” to provide the payment info.

Under the “Bank Location Country”, choose the country where you opened your bank account. After entering the checking account number as well as the routing number, click on “Submit”.

Once you have submitted the info, wait for the confirmation email. This might not come until after a few days, as Amazon needs to verify the account first.

3. Look up the title you’d like to sell

On your main account page, find the “Sell your stuff” link; it will allow you to search for textbook titles. Alternatively, you could perform a standard search.

If you’re going to use the “Sell you stuff” link, the first thing you want to do is ensure that “Books” set as the product category. Then, after following the link, type the ISBN or the title of the book in the search box. To kick off your listing, click on “Start Selling”.

If, on the contrary, you choose to use the standard search method, type the title of the book you would like to sell on the Amazon search box as though you were purchasing it. After locating the book and going to its detail page, click the “Sell on Amazon” tab to start your listing.

4. List your new title

If the textbooks you’re looking to sell are new, then you’re going to have to list a new title. But, before starting a new list, you have got to make sure that the title is not already listed on Amazon. To do that, go to the “Sell your stuff” page and search for the book’s ISBN. If there are no results for it, then you will be directed to a page where you can start a new listing.

When doing a new listing, be sure to provide all the relevant info, including the title, author, ISBN, and so on.

5. Set your price

If the book you’re selling is already listed, you can look at what the other sellers are offering it for and quote a similar price (a slightly lower price would be better/more competitive).

6. Specify the book’s condition

Is the book new or used? – specify that. A new textbook is one that has never been read.

Conditions for used items range from “acceptable” to “like new”. A “like new” textbook is one that has been read maybe only a few times and appears as though it’s new; it shouldn’t have any signs of damage like creases, tears, and writings.

A “very good” book is one whose pages and cover are still intact but there are signs of aging, such as a few creases or mild folding.

A textbook is “good” when the cover and pages are intact but the spine shows various light signs of damage and the text has been highlighted a bit.

When a textbook is rated “acceptable”, then the cover and the pages are still okay, even though they might have creasing and folding. Such a book also has highlighting and notes in the pages, though they shouldn’t be so much that they obscure the words.

Books with missing pages or covers or obscured text are unacceptable and can’t be sold on Amazon.

7. Save your listing

Before you save your listing, choose your shipping method. You can either choose to ship your books through your own means or use the more convenient Fulfilled by Amazon (FBA) program.

If you’re going to use the FBA services, then you will need to ship your textbooks to the nearest FBA center; Amazon will provide you with a list of these centers and give you the procedure you should use to ship them there.

The best part of using FBA services is that Amazon practically does everything for you. They store and ship your products and all you have to do is monitor the listing and manage your profits.

When one of your books is bought, Amazon ships it and updates your listing, and of course, they also send you a notification. The cost of shipping is incorporated into the service fees.

How Much It Pays?

If it’s a new textbook, of course you can set any price you like, taking into consideration various factors like production cost or buying price (if you bought the book for resale), demand, how much similar books are going for, and so on.

On the other hand, if it’s an old textbook, it’s only reasonable that you set a price lower than what you bought it for. 80% of the buying price would be a good rate; some books will go for lower or higher, depending on the quality, demand, and other aspects.

If you’re not sure how much you should sell the book for, there’s a way you can figure that out. Just go to the Amazon Trade-in site and enter the title or ISBN of the book you’d like to sell. The results will tell you whether the book is eligible for a trade-in and how much you will make.

You will need to answer a few questions about the book, particularly the condition of the book. Be sure to give truthful answers. 

After that, you only have to specify your return shipping address and you are all done. You can add more books to the trade in order and once you are finished, click on “Confirm”.

After that, all that is left is packaging the books, printing off the free mailing label, and getting the books to the nearest Amazon fulfilment center.

Final Tip

The Textbook buyback program that Amazon runs is part of its greater trade in program, which offers you a fine opportunity for selling your unwanted stuff. Therefore, while selling your old textbooks, search around the Amazon site for other items you can send in, like electronics, clothes, lawn mowers, and so on. That way, you will be able to make even more money. 


The catch with Amazon’s trade-in program (for old items) is that you will not be paid in cash. Instead, you will be paid in Amazon gift cards but for most of us, that’s as good as cash, because one can use the credits obtained to buy other items on Amazon, perhaps even new/used textbooks for the next semester.

Tips for Maximizing Your Textbook Buyback Results on Amazon

Keep your textbooks clean. Don’t write notes or other stuffs in the book; even writing your name reduces your odds of success, so let it stay looking new and unused. Keep them away from water/moisture as it tends to be a great cause of wear and tear.

Buy your textbooks from Amazon. When you’re ready to sell them, and you log into your account and access the buyback program, Amazon will give you a list of previous purchases that qualify for the program. That makes the process a lot easier and convenient.

 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Will I pay to sell on Amazon?

Payment depends on the plan you pick. If you know you’ll be selling less than 40 books per month, then the plan you’re looking at is the Individual plan. For this one, you’ll not pay a monthly subscription fee. But, Amazon will charge you 0.99 dollars for every book you sell.

If you’ll be selling more than 40 books per month, you’re looking at the Professional plan, which requires you to pay a subscription fee of 39.99-dollar monthly.

2. What does FBA stand for?

Fulfillment by Amazon. Under this arrangement, you let Amazon package, store, and ship your books to customers.

3. Should I ship my books to buyers or let Amazon’s FBA do it?

If you’re looking to sell under the professional plan and you’re targeting a wide market, the FBA would be the best choice. We recommend shipping your books to customers only when they’re not many and when you’re looking to sell locally.

Final Word

We have simultaneously described the process of selling your used textbooks and your new ones. By following the procedures and the selling tips we have outlined here, you should be able make profits selling textbooks on Amazon, whether in cash (for new textbooks under new titles) or in gift cards (in case of used textbooks).

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