Friday, November 20, 2009

Waterstone's rolls out secondhand bookstore

19.11.09 Philip Jones in The Bookseller

Waterstone's has become the latest online bookseller to begin selling secondhand books with the launch of Waterstone's Marketplace. The chain has also unveiled an online DVD store, and a "tickets" shop described as "an exciting way to buy tickets for hundreds of great events nationwide".

Waterstone's has launched a standalone Marketplace site in conjunction with Alibris, the giant online bookshop that sells used and rare books via a network of independent bookellers. In addition, individual book searches on the Waterstone's site now show secondhand copies, which are available to buy via a marketplace link.

Waterstone's said the development meant it could offer "access to tens of millions of items stocked by independent sellers from 45 countries around the world". Featured shops on the marketplace site include, Bailey Hill Book Shop, Castle Cary, Somerset; Literary Cat Books and Prints, Wales; Cromer Books; and Spinetinglers, Ballygowan.

Academic bookseller Blackwell signed a similar deal with Alibris in February last year. Borders made the same deal in September thus year. Waterstone's will also be competing with Amazon and, which both offer secondhand books.

Alibris offers its affiliates a baseline 5% commission which can increase to 7.5% dependent upon sales. Any purchase made within 30 days of initial clickthough, will also pay out a commission.

Waterstone's tickets offers "exclusive tickets offers on The Rat Pack Live from Las Vegas, Oliver!, A Christmas Carol, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Legally Blonde - The Musical and The Shawshank Redemption". Meanwhile, Waterstone's DVD store is selling DVDs from "as little as £3.99".

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