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Thread: What is best way to sell and ship quilting books?

  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    I am seeking advice from those of you more experienced with the process of selling and shipping quilting books. Most of these are new, unused, not even cracked open. Some are gently used.

    So, is this board, Ebay, Amazon or some other site the best place? It seems to me that the fees of Ebay and Paypal have gotten way out of hand. It wouldn't seem to me like someone would want to pay that much for a book. Is this true?

    Media Mail would be the best price, but no delivery tracking. Flat rate USPS envelope would be great and include delivery confirmation but it costs nearly $5 and can only hold maybe 3 books.

    So how do you all ship?

    If you are wondering why ... I am in the "downsizing" process. Now living with my son, using his living room as my workroom. He will be retiring from the military and need his room back within a year or so. I will keep the machine and a few treasured and well-used items ... everything else will eventually go.

    Advice, anyone?

  2. #2
    Junior Member CraftyGardenMom's Avatar
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    When I was purging my quilt books I listed them all on Amazon.com - very simple, I could see what others were selling the same book for and decide what to price mine at, and they already set the shipping at $3.99 for regular (media mail/parcel post) or I think $8.99 for expedited shipping and let the customer choose which they prefer. I liked it because they handled collecting all the money vs. having to go through Paypal. Downside is you have to pay to ship it prior to getting your money from Amazon.com. But once you have confirmed you shipped the book, you can immediately request your money from Amazon via direct deposit into your account.

    Hope that helps!

    Tanesha

  3. #3
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    Thanks. So media mail or parcel post with no insurance or delivery confirmation? How did the customers feel about that I wonder?

    Did you use a padded envelope? Or wrap in plastic and heavy brown paper? Or something else?

    Thanks for your help!! Gratefully appreciated!!

  4. #4
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    Books ship cheaply via USPS media mail. Ship that way unless the customer wants to pay for quicker delivery. You can use amazon to see what others are selling the same book for. I would try listing on this board first, since it's free and your target audience (quilters) hang out here.

  5. #5
    MTS
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    Personally, I think this board would be the easiest way to sell quilting related material (fabric/notions/machines/books). I've been on eBay for years (buying and selling), but when I do my next purge, I'm doing it here.

    First of all, no fees. The only expense you'll have is PayPal and materials like envelopes and tape (if you don't ship via Priority), which you'd have even if you went the Amazon/eBay route.

    There are only the emails or PM's between you and the buyer - not the gazillion auto-generated deluge you get at eBay (no matter how you set your preferences).

    You can request money orders (or even cash) if you want to as a form of payment. Me - I'd stick with Paypal - way, way easier. If I did accept money orders, I'd only take those from the USPS. I don't want to deposit MO to my bank account, or run around to cash them at WalMart or supermarkets for instant cash.

    And you most certainly can get Delivery Confirmation on Media Mail (as well as First Class) if it's done via PayPal.
    It's only $.19 (free for Priority).

    If you have to buy envelopes, add a $1 to the postage cost. Or quote a price with shipping included - but mention the method. If someone thinks it's being shipped Priority, and you're sending it Media Mail (which could take 2 weeks), that buyer can get ticked off - resulting in more annoying emails.

    One thing I did notice on this board was how high some prices were - almost regular retail. Pretty much everyone already knows you can get any new book at Amazon for 34% off list, so why would you compete with that? It's like real estate - be smart about price and it will sell (even in a crappy market). Be greedy and it will sit, and taking little deductions just makes the seller look more desperate.

    Ok, no more of my secrets! I don't need the competition. :lol:

    Good luck!

  6. #6
    Super Member donnajean's Avatar
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    Media mail is not as cheap as it used to be & sometimes can take up to 2 weeks for delivery. Also, you have the expense of packaging which has to be good as Media Mail is brutal. If you use USPS.com you can ship Priority Flat Rate Envelope for $4.75 & get free Delivery Confirmation.

  7. #7
    Super Member sewwhat85's Avatar
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    great info

  8. #8
    Super Member Treasureit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by donnajean
    Media mail is not as cheap as it used to be & sometimes can take up to 2 weeks for delivery. Also, you have the expense of packaging which has to be good as Media Mail is brutal. If you use USPS.com you can ship Priority Flat Rate Envelope for $4.75 & get free Delivery Confirmation.
    Prices went up yesterday for Priority - check USPS.COM

  9. #9
    Super Member Treasureit's Avatar
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    I just sold a ton of books from my old appraising business on ebay. Prices were very inconsistent. I would try here and see how it goes first - then try some of the other options if you have some left.

    I shipped everything media mail...outside of one that got sidetracked they all made it to there destinations in about a week. Shipping through Paypal (if they pay that way) includes delivery confirmation so you can see that it was delivered and when. If you don't use Paypal then you have to take it to the Post Office to ship media mail or 1st class. Priority you can do online. Hope that helps a little!

  10. #10
    MTS
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    A few other thoughts:

    I don't think a buyer would have problem paying $5 for Priority for THREE books. I think that's a fine deal. And most quilting books are the same size. If you're particularly inclined, you might be able to stuff 4 books into a Flat Rate USPS Priority envelope for that $5.

    And in case you didn't know, the tape is free also. Just ask at your LPO for a roll next time you're there. But it can ONLY be used on packages being sent via Priority. If you use it on the Media Mail packages, it will get kicked back to you.

    Media Mail for a book will probably run around $2.00. I think the average quilt books weighs around 12-13oz. Add in some for packaging.
    Also, you can check on Amazon, as they have the book weights listed (without packaging).

    Media Mail is NOT available on USPS.com, nor is First Class. Very annoying. I guess they don't trust us to really only approved Media items via Media Mail.

    And, fyi, Magazines are not allowed to be send via Media Mail as they contain advertising.

    Even if they're 50 years old. So in the unlikely event that they open your package (which they never do), be prepared. I have heard it happen with someone who sold old LIFE magazines.

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