Up for sale is my ~ $275,000 inventory current listing value amazon book business. Yes, that value is current. I currently have 10,900 unique listings for sale on amazon, with duplicates (2 or more copies of same thing) adding another 900 or so for sale items. I am asking $8000 as a firm basement price and will take higher offers and sell to the highest bidder over the next couple weeks. I have watched ebay and craigslist for many years for big lots of books to buy, including existing amazon businesses, and I can say confidently that 3 cents on the dollar purchase price for already listed and database transferable is incredibly cheap compared to most all competing big value book lots, and will make you lots of money sometime in year 2. Year 1 and part of year 2 should pay back your investment at my current rate of sales, which are reaching for $10K annual sales, but haven’t gotten there yet.
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I am not a distress seller and will keep on selling until money is paid by some buyer. It is located in Winona, MN on a quiet street with plenty of parking. I simply have another investment I would like to add to at this time. I love selling books!
I have been selling on amazon from 2006 to 2011, then sold my then 13K items worth $50K plus to a twin cities buyer for $2500 prior to moving overseas.
In 2015 I returned to the US, rapidly listed my own local buys by the hundreds and thousands, bought out a 4K+ item collection in Ohio for $2900 in 2016 worth about $60K (and tacked on another $2K in shipping costs) and then bought out a Pine Island bookseller 3500 items worth $200K. I was initially skeptical of the Pine Island owner’s $200K claim but it turned out to be accurate.
I have sold more than $20K in 4 plus years as my inventory has grown from zero to 11K items. My current sales are slowly increasing to about $20 a day so far this year and averaging 2 sales per day. My record sale is a $525 set so far. I am selling this at about 1x annual sales. Steady cashflow profits have been at least ½ of sales. I have sold many items over $100 every year since buying the Pine Island medical/dental books.
Some quirks of this massive online business:
1-All of my shipping is merchant fulfilled. None is FBA. I have lots of shipping materials included in sale price.
2-Much of the value is in maybe 2500 medical and dental research ex library books.
3-For hundreds and probably over a thousand items, I am the only seller of that item on the internet! Make up your own price, that’s what I have to do.
4-About Half of the inventory is priced at $6 or less. I price nothing under $4 due to shipping costs. I sell many $4 and $5 items every month at a decent profit.
5-300 + stage plays which sell a couple every month and are in their own location. Mostly low priced.
6-Couple hundred VHS, some with high values ($246!). Sell a few every month (highest sale $99).
7-Very few dvd, as amazon forbids resellers like me from selling them. Some quirky non movie titles slip through and so I have a few listed, highest dvd sale $138 for some women’s empowerment dvd..
8-Cassette tapes and library cd books on tape- some hundreds. Still selling.
9-A few cd’s, again, amazon restricts general resellers from selling cd’s, but some titles slip through.
10-Hundreds of old books, some with high listing values.
11-Hundreds of auction catalogs from 70s and 80’s. Very few competitors and so I price most of them at $10-25.
12-Hundreds of SIGNED, AUTOGRAPHED books which are all premium priced. These are mostly listed as collectible and have higher listing prices. I’m sure I’ve missed a few signed books. Many autographed books are poetry, which have small runs and thus are fairly valuable for my signed ones.
13-I love history and Christianity books for myself and so there are a fair % amount of Christian and history books listed. There is also a lot of kids book, thousands. Some high value, but most under $10.
14-Lots of foreign language books. These are mostly high value due to often unique listings of mine. I have thousands cumulatively of french, spanish, italian, german mostly from 1960’s on to present.
15-As is usually the case when someone is selling their book business, there are many hundreds of unlisted books which I have simply not gotten around to listing. 800 or so CD’s too. Have a couple hundred very old Scandinavian books which are mostly unlisted. Norway, Denmark, Sweden. The few of these I have listed have HIGH listing values.
16-I have over 1600 former half.com books which I have not relisted onto amazon. Half.com closed a few years ago and these books are still on my shelves but are not listed on amazon. I will show you what sku’s include them. I still have the half.com computer file you can have which lists what needs to be relisted under amazon.
17-I have a whole box of 36 rolls of 3” tape with industrial tape dispenser. Black markers for addresses
18-Hundreds of mylar mailers with adhesive strip. 6x9, 10x15, 9x12 for my most flat and or cheapest items.
19-Hundreds of # 0 though #7 size bubble wrap yellow mailers when counted together.
20-includes all non bookcase shelving. I will be keeping my bookcases for my own books. The vast majority of my books for sale are on very sturdy 4” thick concrete block and ¾” particle board shelving with plastic sheeting
21- I also have an address writer and postal scale, neither of which i use. They cost me $130+ used from one of my big sellers but I just do things manually. I just take mine to usps myself. You could buy shipping and addresses and do from home if desired.
A word on my inventory value. Penny booksellers have eaten away at the sub $4 market, so many of my $4 and $5 listings are not close to the cheapest. I do not use a software repricer but manually reprice when I have time. Prices do get stale and would benefit from more attention, either manually or with a software repricer. There would most likely be a big bump up in sales if you knew how to software reprice.
Increasingly, massive book sellers like better world books and other similar giant outfits are even price cannibalizing a few of my super obscure medical and dental books. I am trying to be the next highest price in many cases rather than follow them down in price in all cases.
A paragraph on sku’s. All important for a bookseller is to quickly find a book once it has sold. My collection of ⅓ Ohio, ⅓ Pine Island and ⅓ my own buys have somewhat different sku systems. I will patiently explain differences. Suffice it to say that my own ⅓ has great and quick and accurate sku’s, but Ohio ⅓ has some issues which I have been slowly fixing section by section. Sometimes my ohio items sell but there is no inventory. I then either cancel the sale or buy someone else’s item for sale and have it mailed to my customer in order to keep my ratings high with amazon. I have been fixing much of the ⅔ of the inventory with proper sku’s but due to endless Overtime at my full time job, haven’t completed the task. I will very clearly delineate which sections have been properly re sku’d and which ones still need that done for greater accuracy in order fulfillment.
If i had completed sku ing it, the asking price for all of this would be $10,000+.
As I have sporadically resku’d dozens of sections, I have found hundreds of items not yet listed but present on my supposedly all listed for sale shelves. There is real upside in value for finishing this task, easily $10K in value remains to be found and listed on my existing for sale shelving. For instance, 2 medical books were listed in my Pine Island buy which I have so far not found (½ done re skuing pine island) with listing values over $1500. They should be somewhere on my shelves, but they are not currently listed for sale.
I would be willing to show this to a very interested buyer and will have lots to say about my 3 sku systems which overlap somewhat so a buyer would be thoroughly informed of the way my system works.
This is a serious business, I ship daily and sometimes 6 days a week. The inventory value is in the ballpark. Even if you removed the bottom ½ of this, say 5000 items below $6, there would still be $240K in listing value.
Having an amazon business is hard work and not an easy route to riches. This is a workingman’s business to build and maintain.
This is not a distress sale, if no $8000 or higher bids appear, I will happily keep on selling profitably every month. I have another investment I would prefer to make with this sale.
DO NOT offer me any price below $8000. If there are multiple serious inquiries you had better be offering UP from my low low price of 3% of current listed value.
I don’t have hundreds of boxes to box this up, and having hauled it all down to my climate controlled basement, I am not willing to carry it back up the dozen or so steps. A 26 foot uhaul would have to be double or triple stacked in order to haul it all away. You are responsible for getting boxes, boxing them up and loading.
I am eminently flexible with regard to a move out date, no hurries. I will keep selling until money changes hands. After that, I will cease operations. It should be possible, with amazon’s help, to transfer my inventory to your account so it can immediately start selling for you. Knowing a pick up date farther in advance will give me time to hopefully get off work. If there is a future date that is far enough out before you can move them yourself, I will ask for a meaningful deposit of $1000 or $2000 to hold them while I keep on selling. Only full payment in cash will stop me from selling them completely myself.
I will take cash, which must pass inspection at a local bank both for quantity and quality (meaning not fake money), before you may load any inventory. I suggest a video device so you can record my in depth explanations of what is where, what remains to be done to finish up the sku system inadequacies, and what should be in pretty near perfect shape.
Contact me via email only.