Textbook Buyback on Amazon is a Trade-In Program

Amazon has a portion of its site devoted to buying back things people don’t want anymore. A large portion of that business comes from buying back books. Amazon got its start as an online bookstore, and it is still one of the most popular sites when it comes to buying books, new or used. In recent times, Amazon has grown to allow people to trade in their goods in exchange for credit. While Amazon would want you to believe they operate a textbook buyback program, it is, in fact, a trade-in program hence the name “Amazon Trade-In”.

So how does one go about trading in their books and other used goods? First the product in question must already be in the catalog on Amazon, so there must be demand for it. Amazon is picky about what things it’ll let you exchange, so it’s not like you can go and use this program to get rid of every book title at your disposal. Moreover, your book needs to match the product description exactly. A close match is not enough, as their criteria are actually quite strict. If the condition of the book does not meet expectations, then Amazon will reject your offer for a trade-in and send it back to you. And if you don’t have an address in the United States? Just forget about it. You can send it in, but there aren’t any guarantees that they’ll accept it, and they may not even send it back to you. That’s risky business for international customers of Amazon.
Let’s say someone decides to go through with trading in their goods. What happens? If the book is up to par with their standards upon your inspection, you go to the Amazon website and submit a trade-in. Once you do that, you’ll get to print a shipping label for free. Just make sure to send it in within a week of submitting the trade.

Once it gets to the Amazon warehouse, one of two things can happen. If the trade is accepted, then great. Payment will be in the form of credit deposited right into your account. Easy as that. On the other hand, if it turns out that your book isn’t what they’re looking for, they simply ship your trade in items back to you, free of charge. Of course, that’s only if you live in the United States.

Amazon does not issue real money for these trade-ins. Instead, they issue credit that you can only use on their website. In essence, they get more inventory free of charge because the “money” will eventually go straight back into their pocket. There’s nowhere else you can possibly spend Amazon credit.

There are a few obstacles that might stop you from taking this route with your used textbooks. Firstly, the fact that there is no cash involved in this situation. It really restricts you to one place where you can buy things. If you were hoping to pay the bills with the money from this trade in, it’s best to look into another option. By using credit instead of cash, Amazon locks you into doing more business with them. They don’t want to give you money because you’d probably spend it elsewhere.  Additionally, the trade-in program isn’t available at all to people living abroad. Unless you possess an unwavering loyalty to Amazon, it’s best to choose someplace that will give you cash to sell your books.

Amazon is an online marketing and sales juggernaut intent on keeping eyeballs and pocketbooks tuned in on to their site.  The Amazon Trade-In Program plus the Amazon Student Program are two effective marketing tools to increase customer loyalty from a demographic (college students) who are known to be very apathetic to mass marketing. Amazon is a platform used by millions of students across the United States, but before you jump head first and sign-up, take a moment and read the fine print.