This is a guest post by a great friend of the Bookshop Blog – Paul Young. Paul runs Prying1 Books please take a moment a pay a visit to his site.
One thing I have discovered in the short time I’ve been selling books online is that a bit of research pays off in the long run. Recently I decided to list an art book and found that on Bookfinder.com the simple title, “Tamayo” (a Mexican artist 1899-1991), was somewhat lacking. In my initial search I typed in the title, “Tamayo”, left it ‘any’ and ‘all’ as far as new/used and hardcover/soft cover goes and got 70 listings. The majority had longer titles and could be dismissed but I found a couple lines that looked promising. They still didn’t look right as I checked them out. Key words were missing from the listings.
So I went to Google and typed in the title, publisher, date and the name of the person that wrote the Intro. Bingo! I find another bookseller that has it for $125.00. That sounds promising but… I’ll dig a little deeper. Back to Bookfinder with the name of the Intro guy… Here we go. 25 listings with some dupes. Low price $30.00 plus shipping. Scroll down… Here are the numbers I like. One for $180 and another for $285.
Again I check out the Google search page I had left open. Click another link and here is an auction house that sold a copy and a pic is provided. Same book hammered down for only $34.00. Quite a disparity. Ten minutes of playing around (this includes periodically adjusting the puppy on my lap) and I now have high/low numbers and a choice.
Do I want to look lovingly at this book forever and ever or find it a good home at a reasonable price? I once asked a friend of mine that owned a wonderful antique store why her prices were so low on most of the items she had. Her reply, “I don’t want to stay married to this stuff.” was a line I will ever remember. Although there are some books I have that this statement does not apply to this isn’t one of them.