Update Announcements

by Craig Stark

#113, 4 February 2008

The buzz last week, of course, swirled around the announced changes at eBay. Never before have I seen so many changes in one shot - changes to fees, feedback and more. Predictably, the response has been largely negative, but there's a curious difference this time: Most of these changes play right into the hands of the bookseller BookThink has been urging you to be and in some cases may even result in a net reduction of fees. Can you spell "PowerSeller"? The term will actually mean something now. I explain why in my article, "The Kind of Bookseller eBay Now Wants Forces You to Be." Thanks go out to bookseller Keith Wease for granting us permission to publish a series of charts which analyze how the fees changes will impact you.

Next I'd like you to read and ponder this paragraph from Chris Lowenstein's article:

"Like all booksellers, the antiquarian bookseller will research the current price and availability of a particular book to determine its current market value. But unlike other booksellers, the antiquarian bookseller also researches the book to see if others have overlooked anything significant about it that would add to its value. When this type of research turns up something new, the antiquarian bookseller can, with a well-written and well-placed description, set his price above what others are asking, thus driving the market upward."

Also, if you have time, read this article.

Surely your success as a bookseller depends to a large extent on your ability to locate and purchase high quality inventory, but to truly advance in this profession, sooner or later you'll need to develop the ability to add value to books. As Chris explained last month, this ability is what distinguishes antiquarian booksellers from other booksellers. Today she discusses various approaches to learning how to master it.

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