Thu. Oct 6th, 2022


Shopping for new books on-line is fairly straightforward—all of us simply head off to Amazon (or E book Depository, or Waterstones, or no matter) and shut our order. However it’s best to undoubtedly take into account shopping for second-hand books as an alternative. For one, they’re at all times low cost. And for an additional, it is higher for the surroundings.


Discovering them on-line is usually a bit daunting, particularly when you’ll be able to’t see the photographs and have to fret about issues like high quality. So, this is a information to the 5 greatest web sites you should utilize to supply your previous books, and be sure to’re getting precisely what you need.

eBay ought to be the primary port of name for anybody trying to purchase second-hand books. It has a variety of titles, particularly these which might be extra standard, and you may typically discover them right here cheaper than anyplace else. Plus, you are very more likely to be acquainted with the way it works already, which incorporates checking vendor rankings and sorting by worth.

On the whole, there ought to be sufficient sellers on eBay providing books at a sure worth that you do not have to bid. Bantam Books and Cmedia are two of the best-known sellers on the market, however there are a complete host of others.

Many provide multiple-purchase reductions, which let you save a proportion in the event you purchase a number of books directly from the identical vendor. Utilizing it, it’s best to be capable of slot in 4 or 5 books for between $10 and $15—one thing that might be unimaginable in the event you had been to purchase them new.

The one draw back to eBay, which is considerably true for the entire platforms on this record, is that you simply rely closely on the vendor to appropriately classify the standard of the e-book. Is it “Like New”, “Very Good”, “Good”, or simply “Acceptable”?

False expectations are an actual concern, regardless of how reliable the vendor could also be. Because the vendor will not often trouble to add precise photos of the e-book utilizing inventory photos as an alternative, it is actually anybody’s guess how the e-book will ultimately end up.


Additionally, strive to not have your coronary heart set on particular covers. When accumulating sequence, many individuals are keen to ensure the spines are all fairly and matching, however matching bibliographic information for particular volumes is important to getting the quilt you need (and Nonetheless, it does not at all times work). You may not care an excessive amount of about it, nevertheless it’s undoubtedly one thing to think about if in case you have all the opposite books in a sequence from a particular print run.

General, nonetheless, shopping for second-hand books from eBay is affordable, quick, and dependable.

Some of the standard second-hand books, AbeBooks, is devoted to matching sellers with consumers. It might typically be pricier than eBay, so it is at all times good to check first, nevertheless it has a pleasant consumer interface.

Many unbiased booksellers use this platform, so it is a great way to assist them as properly. Not like eBay, the place it’s nearly solely as much as the vendor what particulars they wish to embody about that e-book, nearly all EbayBook listings include a superb variety of bibliographic particulars—together with the all-important e-book standing, binding and publishers.

AbeBooks has an particularly good deal with textbooks and uncommon or collectible books. Whereas we do not think about that lots of you need to purchase the primary version of EM Forster’s Passage to India, which lately price over $18,000, you could find loads of signed books right here.

In the meantime, AbeBooks additionally has its personal podcast, Behind the Bookshelves, which covers a variety of literary subjects.

Thriftbooks is very nice for getting nice offers on books which might be not in print, and might be ridiculously costly elsewhere. That is all as a result of its wonderful email-notification setup.

Should you signal as much as be notified when the e-book you need is in inventory, you may be emailed instantly when it’s added to the location. That means, you will typically be capable of decide up cheaper copies of books, which can be costlier elsewhere, so we won’t advocate the location sufficient for uncommon e-book hunts.

There are another advantages to procuring at ThriftBooks as properly. For instance, it has a studying rewards system that permits you to earn factors in your purchases (eight factors per greenback spent), which might then be redeemed on books. There are additionally multi-buy presents on some books.

Should you’re inquisitive about promoting your previous books, ThriftBooks can be one of many apps on this record of greatest apps to promote previous books on.

Like World of Books, a significant benefit of Higher World Books is that it presents free transport on all books, with no minimal buy quantity required. That is true regardless of the place you reside, however the worth of the e-book modifications to replicate the underlying prices. For instance, a duplicate of Cressley Cole’s fantasy romance novel A Starvation Like No Different (based mostly in Indiana) prices about $10 when it arrives within the UK, however solely half that when shipped inside the US.


BWB additionally sells new books, which is why it seems on this record of the very best Amazon alternate options to purchase books. Nonetheless, its providing of second-hand books is the place it shines.

We’re impressed with the vary of titles on show, together with its environment friendly, easy-to-handle search performance. Like ThriftBooks, there is a multiple-purchase low cost that permits you to save 15% while you purchase 4 books (a proportion that will increase to the extra books you purchase directly).

Additionally like Thriftbook, there’s a rewards program that permits you to earn eight factors per greenback spent. Once you rating 500 factors (or about $63), you will be entitled to a $5 voucher.

Whereas Alibris typically has good finds, it’s final on this record for a motive. First, it does not mechanically provide free transport: solely sure books are eligible, and even then, you will have to order $39 value of books. It does not mechanically add transport prices to the e-book price, so you do not see the precise price of buying the e-book immediately.

That is to not say that Alibris does not have its plus factors. For one, you get a $5 low cost code while you join its publication. For one more, it has a number of methods to filter search outcomes. You’ll be able to type by worth, situation, launch date and even how far the vendor is positioned from you.

Speaking about sellers, it has eBay-like characteristic of vendor ranking. They’re ranked and starred, and even have vendor storefronts, the place you’ll be able to see critiques from different clients.

Assembly your second-hand e-book wants

The 5 web sites we have listed above ought to be capable of get you each second-hand e-book you’ve got ever wished to learn. Between them, eBay, AbeBooks, ThriftBooks, BWB and Alibris have thousands and thousands of titles.

Shopping for second-hand might imply phone book and bizarre curved covers, however it can unencumber your price range for tons of latest books—and that is a very vital factor.



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