In a previous comment I mentioned that the minimum wage here in Australia was approximately $15 per hour add in benefits such as holiday pay sick pay superannuation and the self employed should be looking at around $22 per hour to achieve some sort of parity with minimum wage (we won’t go anywhere near capital return, GST/Sales Tax etc etc)
Like most B&M owners these days I also sell on line and I accept that it is a cutthroatedly competitive market and that the megasellers can list used books for pennies AND make money using a high volume, low margin business model. We are fortunate that this business model is not common in Australia as we don’t have a listing service that caters to it and no one has the millions of used books required to make it work.
Even as a hobbyist I tried hard to realise the best price for my collection.
But it is the low volume ,low margin online hobby sellers who bug me; they chortle gleefully as they undercut your price by pennies, endlessly checking your listings to see what they should be selling, never thinking past the wow I bought this book for 50c and sold it for $3.50, never thinking beyond gross profit to selling expenses or the value of their time.
They clearly don’t rely on selling books to make a living and they can’t see what underpricing their books does to book selling as a trade, about how buyers start to expect everyone to sell on the same basis as they do.
They come into the bookshop and get cross because they can’t buy my books cheaply enough to resell online and you feel like saying “See that computer on my desk? It’s connected to the internet and I know how to use it”
The only time I love them is when they operate at the other end of the scale, they make no effort to ascertain market value and they price so high not even the most gullible buyer would fall for it. Then you can list your reasonably priced, accurately described copy and sell it within a reasonable timeframe.
My in store de minimis is $6 and my on line de minimis (depending on the listing service ) is $7.95 below that and the build in selling costs mean I would better to send off to sent the books to landfill and go and work for someone else.
Welcome to the world of on-line selling but remember; factor in your time, effort (your wage) and selling costs (travel, internet, listing fees etc) into your selling price so you can have fun, make some money and keep a little value in the booktrade.
10 Station St