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Describe about the Marketing plan for used book?


Marketing plan for used book

Converting something old into gold might be a proverb but selling used books online is definitely something worth of taking a closer look.

Promotion of used book online

Any promotion requires a lot of back end support of what is the search volume for a particular author or subject and what exactly the search pattern is.

Search engine optimisation would come handy in this case and before creating a niche online the following things needs to be looked into closely

  • Search volume for used book

  • Search volume data for particular author or book title

  • Price range of books that are searched for

  • Time spent on page carrying the book details

The database for such books and titles or authors gives an insight into how the package should be promoted.

  • Reverse marketing is one method where the marketer would seek out the customer instead of customer seeking out the promoter.

  • Offers along with the main book or title searched for are definitely going to work

  • Offering latest edition could also help in enticing the customer

  • Free shipping within city limit and minimum flat courier charge for countrywide distribution

  • Guarantee of all pages availability

  • No tear or tampering of pages guarantee

  • Steady and prompt supply of books

Pricing of used books

Pricing should be competitive as street vendors offer most of the books approximately 50% of list price. But there is a glitch of street book supply. There is no guarantee of condition of the book and if lucky the book might be in immaculate condition or else it’s a take it or leave it kind of offer.

The pricing needs to be little less than what a customer gets from street supply of used books. Pricing of books at 45% of the list price would be ideal (Jain, 1993).

Positioning of used book

Positioning of a product online is a critical element for marketing. The positioning needs to be understood from the target customer’s needs, available competitors online, line of communication available to get in touch with the target group, promotional language used for brand positioning of such products.

  • Positioning of used book should be in low end product segment

  • Discount of 50% and above needs to be placed for such products

  • Free shipment needs to be highlighted

  • Flat courier service across country needs to be highlighted

Distribution of used book

Distribution of used book should be kept in within the purview of easy search option along with customer orientation and preference.

The used book should be placed in amazon and eBay where customers come for easy buy and big discount offers.

Warehousing and procuring materials from local vendors for easy distribution is necessary.

Procurement of such books locally will be cost effective as well.


Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats analysis (SWOT analysis)

Landscape analysis

Used book market is huge as not every college going student can afford to buy new edition and getting the latest edition costs a lot for students and others who looks for easy buy.

  • Amazon and eBay are basically platforms for sellers who market their products. Before placing the products in either of these platforms one has to identify the competitors and pricing these competitors are offering for similar used books.

  • Analyse the discounts offered by them and by what extent the products are viewed by target customers.

  • Target customers usually search from low price to high price for their book titles and more than often use (Ansary, 2009)

  • Search patterns needs to be analysed before placing the product for better response

Matching and converting opportunities

Book titles needs to be looked into and products needs to be placed accordingly as certain products sell better if matched promptly.

  • Match searched author and title

  • Match price and convert prospects into sales

  • Free service within city limits and return policy outlined clearly

  • Target group analysis for better pricing

Internal and external factors for sale

Communication is a big factor for platform selling and that helps in clinching a sale.

  • Feedback mechanism from customers is essential to understand target group expectations

  • Prompt communication with key partners is essential for better service to customers

  • Courier service needs to be tracked properly for quick dispatch and receive

  • Better packing materials gives a feel of secured service for customers

  • Payment gateways needs to be secured for better service


Planning of products placing needs to be understood and completed before placing for sale.

  • Quality and quantity of products on offer is the bench mark for all kinds’ goods marketing.

  • Unplanned positioning of products might end up not getting sold

  • Dispatch and proper packing of products

  • Discount offered should apply on payment page (Davidson, 1982)

  • Secured payment gateways for better transparency

  • Cash on delivery option should be made available wherever applicable

Threat perception

Platform selling through key partners has its own dangers as well. Too many competitors in same segment can ruin the selling practice.

  • Need to understand the competitors selling capacity

  • Too big a consultancy can ruin a secured segment of used book selling

  • Small consultants making inroads into a narrow segment can ruin the selling plan

  • Discounts offered by competitors and quality of books along with authors in demand can also ruin the selling plan (Palmer, 1985)


For every venture the milestones are necessary and an apt sales team along with instant chat help and backend support for customer service is essential to send across a good vibe to potential customers.

  • Customers buying online always look for secured environment to buy and access information about the product.

  • Prompt back end customer support will help achieve such target group easily.

  • Feel good factor should be played upon customers to return for more buys and future reference.

  • Shopping experience should be good and secured

Revenue forecast

Total revenue generated by amazon from book sale is 5.25 billion dollars and used book sale could be just less than 10% of that. That comes to around $ 525000000.00

A two percent share of this huge market is good enough for a start up company.



1. Jain, S. C. (1993). Marketing planning and strategy. Cincinnati South-Western Publishing Company 1985..

2. Kumar, S., & Phrommathed, P. (2005). Research methodology (pp. 43-50). Springer US.

3. Cohen, W. A. (2005). The marketing plan. John Wiley & Sons.

4. Kolb, B. M. (2005). Marketing for cultural organisations: new strategies for attracting audiences to classical music, dance, museums, theatre & opera. Thomson Learning Emea.

5. Strauss, J., Frost, R., & Ansary, A. I. (2009). E-marketing. Pearson Prentice Hall.

6. Berman, B. (1996). Marketing channels. John Wiley & Sons Inc.

7. Davidson, W. H. (1982). Global strategic management. John Wiley & Sons Incorporated.

8. Palmer, G. D. (1985). Principles of marketing. Thomson South-Western.

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