Selling books online is one of the simplest ways to make money, to be honest. It’s also a great business for people who just want to do something on the weekends or as a side job.

Have a bunch of old books lying around in your attic, gathering dust? You could make a lot of money from them.

With online shopping, it’s so easy to buy books that they’re now one of the most popular things to buy on the internet. People just have to pick a title, put in their credit card or PayPal information, and the book will be sent to their address.

Ecommerce has made it easy for publishers and merchants to sell books online, and it has also made it easy for people to buy books online.

In fact, many publishers have already taken advantage of this opportunity. According to the American Associated of Publishers, publishers made more money from online sales than from sales in physical stores. Online sales brought in $8.83 billion, while sales in physical stores brought in $6.90 billion.

So, if you love books and have been wondering for a while how to sell them online, now is the time to get started.

This article is a detailed guide that will teach you how to get into this business in the best way. I will talk about all the ways you can make money selling books.

This article will help you whether you’re a business owner who wants to learn how to sell books online or a person who wants to sell a lot of used books.

Where To Sell Books Online And How To Do It
Where To Sell Books Online And How To Do It

What kind of books can I sell on the Internet?

At this point, you might want to know which books will make you the most money for your business. There are four types of books you should look for. Whether or not you sell them will depend on how popular they are in the market and how you promote them.

These things are:

  • Textbooks
  • Books that are no longer in print
  • Books that are old, rare, or collectible
  • New books that came out first

These books can be sold both as new and as used. Also, you can use a book scanner app to figure out if the genre you want to sell will make money.

Scanner apps like ScoutIQ can give you a good idea of how much a book costs to buy, how much you can sell it for, and how much you might make from it.

The best way to use these apps is to resell books on sites like Amazon.

Even if you want to open an online bookstore, metrics like target price and profit can help you figure out which books will sell well and which won’t.

How to Make a Bookstore Online?

You want to know how to make the most money when you sell books online, right? This means opening your own bookstore where you don’t have to pay a commission on sales.

I suggest setting up with Shopify. It works with many templates that are perfect for online bookstores.

Most of the themes also have a lot of other features that can be used by new book sellers.

For example, you can connect your site to social networks, make your product pages SEO-friendly, put a slideshow on your store’s home page, and more.

Shopify themes also look great on mobile devices like tablets and phones, so you can make money from people who shop on the go.

I also told you to make sure you meet all the legal requirements for opening an online bookstore. For example, you should register the name of your business and get a Federal Tax ID number.

Doing so will help you stay out of trouble with the law in the future.

Most guides on how to sell books online don’t talk about the legal side of the business, so be careful because you can get fined for doing business without being registered.

Also, make sure your bookstore has its own domain. You can do this with Shopify or with a third-party domain seller like GoDaddy. It would cost you no more than $10 to $20.

How to Publicize Your Online Bookstore

Any entrepreneur who wants to learn how to sell books online should learn about marketing.

With a Shopify-powered bookstore, you can collect the email addresses of potential customers so you can send them a weekly newsletter with links to your product pages.

You could also run contests on social media and give discount coupons to people who buy from you often. If you go either of these ways, make sure to use referral marketing.

For example, you can ask people to tag their friends on the Instagram account for your bookstore for a chance to win something free. This is a great way to get your brand in front of a lot of new people.

Putting high-quality images on your product pages is another way to get more people to look at them.

Make sure to use a good camera (an iPhone will do) and take pictures of the book from all different angles.

Maybe you have a few books that have five different covers? In this case, show a picture of each cover and tell customers in the product description that the book has more than one cover.

Besides all of that, I think you should work with people who have a lot of followers on social media.

People who get a lot of attention on social networks are called “social media influencers.”

You can ask them to write a full review of your book and send their followers to your store’s link.

In exchange, you can give them a cut of sales that come through their store. But if you send them a free copy, most influencers will just write a review.

You can find people with a lot of followers on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.

Because the influencer can make a detailed video about your books, YouTube should work best. Let’s not forget that it’s the second biggest search engine after Google.

Keep the momentum going no matter what you do to market your bookstore.

If you can find a way to give a discount, you should. Big sites like Amazon always have sales and discounts.

Discounts are easy to set up and manage thanks to Shopify. Watch this video to see how it’s done:

You can use any or all of these ways to promote your store, so don’t be afraid to do so.

The Best Wholesale Book Distributors and Suppliers Around the World

If you’ve decided on an online bookstore, the next step is to look for wholesale book distributors and suppliers.

This may be the most important part of running a business based on books. When you buy inventory at wholesale prices, you can keep a good margin, which will help you make more money.

Also, once you’ve built up a good relationship with a wholesaler, you can get discounts from them.

I’ve put together a list of 4 good book sellers where you can get all kinds of books at low prices.


At any given time, UsedWholesaleBooks has more than 7 million books for sale.

You can buy books in many different types, such as hardcover wholesale books, mass market fiction books, softcover books for kids, and more.

The stock is put in big, sturdy cardboard boxes called “gaylords” for customers to pick up. Here’s what the price list looks like:

Each box can hold anywhere from 800 to 1200 books, depending on how they are bound and how big they are.

Every book has been looked at to make sure it can be sold, which means it is in great shape to buy.

Bulk Bookstore

Up to 55% of the retail price of a book is taken off at Bulk Bookstore, and shipping is free.

Users only need to type in the book’s author, ISBN, or title to see if it is available. There are thousands of books for sale in both paperback and hardcover in the online catalog.

If you have a list of book titles, the wholesaler makes it easy to save your cart as a “quote” that you can pay for later. You can also email the company your list, and they’ll get back to you with a quote.

This is cool because even Amazon doesn’t work with title lists or give quotes.

You can be sure to find a copy on the website, whether you want to buy a modern first edition or a general textbook.

Buy Bookstore sells at least 25 copies of each title or a total of $100 worth of books.

Book Depot

Book Depot has one of the biggest selections of cheap books, with 75–90% off the list price. This means that you can put great titles on your product pages for a lot less money.

The company’s stock is made up of extra books from publishers. These books may have been held a few times, but they are all real and guaranteed to be in great shape.

You can find books about almost anything, like antiques, biographies, young adult fiction, games, foreign languages, philosophy, drama, and medicine.

There are also a number of “blowout titles” that Book Depot chooses from its stock and sets aside as blowouts. There is a minimum order for these books, and they are very cheap.

If you don’t mind dusting and removing stickers, blowout books can be a great way to save money if you don’t mind having to clean them.


BetterWorldBooks sells a wide range of books and other media in bulk. Fiction, nonfiction, best sellers, and even religious texts are all on the list.

There are many different kinds of books for sale, such as mass market paperbacks, old books, playaways, and leather-bound books.

Prices vary based on the type of book and whether you want to buy a box, a pallet, or a container.

For example, a box of old books from before ISBN costs $95 and a box of playaways costs $40.

I suggest looking for deals at yard sales, discount racks, and offline distributor outlets in addition to finding wholesalers.

You might be surprised at how much money you can save by shopping at these places. If you bargain, you might be able to get stock for as little as 10 cents a book. Crazy.

If you want to start your own business and want to sell first edition books or textbooks, you can also look on eBay and Craigslist for reasonably priced books. The books can then be resold to make money on another market.

This method works best with books that cost at least $30.

How can an author sell books online?

If you’re a writer, you might want to sell your own books rather than those of other people.

You need to know a lot about self-publishing and marketing, and you also have to take care of all the shipping.

Which is hard to do if you work full-time. There are platforms that can meet your needs, which is good news.

One example is Blurb.

Writers who want to know how to sell books online can use it to create, publish, promote, and sell their work in different formats.

You can use Blurb to turn your work into:

  • Photo albums
  • Books for sale (paperbacks and hardcovers)
  • Magazines
  • Notebooks
  • Ebooks

If you want to sell hardbacks and paperbacks, you can ask Blurb to handle the shipping and fulfillment for you. This service can be used both for print-on-demand and mass printing.

For all kinds of trade books, publishers also get a free bar code and ISBN.

Blurb has a list of templates that you can use to print a book. Choose the one that fits your genre the best, and then upload your work.

With Blurb’s Adobe InDesign plugin, you can also make blank templates, but you won’t need to because there are already a lot of beautiful templates for a wide range of industries.

Once you’ve made a book, you can set its price by going to the “Sell and Distribute” section. If you want to make money in this business, make sure to keep a good margin.

Set up your promotional channels is something else you should do. This is very important because you need to let people know about what you’re selling.

You can add the book page to both your Instagram and website. If you do this, your business may make more money. Put some effort into marketing.

Getting good reviews for your books is another good idea. Reviews help people decide what to buy, so send some free copies to people who might be interested and ask them to leave their thoughts.

When it comes to money, Blurb sends you a check or PayPal payment at the end of each month for any sales you’ve made.

But each creator must make at least $25 before they can join.

How to Sell Books on Amazon Online?

You can still use a third-party website to design your book if you’d rather sell it on Amazon. Amazon only needs the book’s ISBN to get it ready for self-publishing.

You’ll also get an author profile that will be linked to all the books you’ve written and put up for sale.

Also, each book will have its own landing page where you can find out more about the story.

Set the price of your book once the author profile is up and running. Make sure to include Amazon’s fees and the cost of getting your book ready.

Customers have 30 days to return the book or ask for a refund through the ecommerce platform.

After 30 days, Amazon will count the sale, figure out how much money you made, and send you the money within 15–45 days. The lowest amount you can get from Amazon is $25.

You can also use Amazon FBA to sell books from other people.

In this business model, you will need to buy the stock and send it to one of Amazon’s fulfillment centers.

Lucky for us, that’s not too hard to do. Put the books in a box and send them using one of the carriers Amazon suggests.

Amazon will handle packaging, shipping, and handling, so you won’t have to worry about anything.

When you set the list price for your books, don’t forget to include the shipping costs.

Also, make sure you have good customer service to keep getting sales. One way to do this is to check in with your customers to see if they like what they bought.

If you list the books correctly, your customers are likely to give you good feedback. If you want to sell a lot of books online and make a lot of money, be honest about how the book looks.

The best places to sell books online and how to do it

You might make a lot of money selling books on Blurb and Amazon, but there are a lot of other websites that can help keep your sales engine going.

Here are the top places to sell your books. Here are some places where you can sell paperbacks, hardcovers, and textbooks.

Half Price Books

Half Price Books is the biggest family-owned bookstore in the US. It has more than 120 locations all over the country.

This is a great way to sell your books if you live near one of their stores.

All you have to do is pack up your books, bring them to an HPB store, and wait for a representative to give you an estimate.

Then, Half Price Books will make you an offer on every book you bring in.

If you like the amount, take the cash and enjoy what you’ve worked for.

The company pays the most for collectibles and recent bestsellers, but it is also interested in paperbacks, hardbacks, and other types of books, whether they are new or old.

I think you should watch this 3-minute video in which an HPB Buy Guy tells you how to sell things to the company.

Book Scouter will tell you how much different companies are willing to pay for a certain title.

This can give you a good idea of how much money you could make.

But the rates change all the time, so it would be smart to sell books for a short time.

Put the ISBN number of a book into the site to see how much it pays. Before you make your final decision, a pro tip is to write down on a notepad the titles that get the best offers.

Keep in mind that all of the companies give quotes based on how much they think they can sell the book for again. This means that titles that are in higher demand will get better quotes.

AbeBooks Book Buyback

Use AbeBooks’s buyback service if you only have a few books to sell.

The company says it has the largest online buyback catalog and will pay you more than your college bookstore.

But your stock should have at least $15 worth of titles in perfect condition that you can sell.

So, don’t make the mistake of sending the company used textbooks. If you do, they will be recycled, and you won’t get anything at all.

Powell’s Books

Powell’s is similar to Half Price Books in that you can bring your books to one of their stores to be valued and sold. If you can’t find one nearby, you can also sell through their website.

But the company only takes titles that are in great shape.

So you can’t sell them books that have been marked up, torn, or have broken bindings.

On its website, the company shows what kinds of problems would cause it to turn down a book.

If Powell’s does buy your books, you’ll get store credit or money through PayPal.

At first glance, people think that is only a place to buy textbooks.

But the company also sells used books directly to students and guarantees cash back on some titles.

This site can help you make a good amount of money if you have a variety of college textbooks in stock.

The unique thing about this site is that the books don’t have to be in perfect shape. You’re good to go if some of the pages are bent or there is writing or highlighting in the book.



Whew. This guide on how to sell books online has finally come to an end.

Remember the tips and links above if you want to start an online bookstore or find places where you can sell your books.

They will help you avoid problems and complaints when you start selling books. Cheers.