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(Victoria, BC - January 26, 2005) More students than ever before are buying used textbooks at vastly discounted prices through the Internet, according to, the world’s largest marketplace for new, used, rare and out-of-print books.

With students’ suffering from a chronic shortage of used textbooks across North America,, which has a dedicated student section called Textbook Central, is enjoying its most successful textbook retail campaign since the site’s creation in 1996.

Sales of textbooks for the spring semester have already amounted to more than $5 million in book value and are still going strong as the end of January approaches. The figures represent an increase in orders of about 400 per cent on 12 months earlier.

For thousands of cash-strapped students, the decision to search for a used textbook on the Web has been easy. Marketing Management by Philip Kotler was the best-selling textbook on in 2004. There are currently more than 350 copies on the site with prices starting at $1 - yet new copies cost around $125 from traditional sources.

A recent state study in Connecticut* revealed students were suffering from expensive textbook prices with three out of four spending between $300 and $700 each semester on textbooks.

The average used textbook sale price on AbeBooks is currently $27. However, students will be pleased to hear online prices for used textbooks are falling - despite the overall shortage - as the online textbook market becomes more competitive.

“The college grapevine and the students’ overpowering need to save money are driving this trend, but we are surprised that sales are still going strong so late in January,” said Sue Connors, AbeBooks director of bookseller community. “Used textbooks have always been part of academic life but they can be hard to find from local sources. Supply simply cannot match demand and that’s why students are turning to the Internet.

“We have worked hard to increase the number of specialist textbook sellers utilizing our site and that’s greatly widened the choice for students. We have the books and prices that students want.”

AbeBooks has also been working to raise its brand awareness with on-campus marketing activity around North America during the past 18 months.


Notes to editors:
Further details about the Connecticut study can be found at:

About is the world’s largest online marketplace for books, with over 60 million new, used, rare, and out-of-print titles listed for sale by more than 12,500 independent booksellers from around the world. AbeBooks has millions of registered customers who collectively purchase more than 20,000 books a day from its 4 global websites (,,, A true internet success story, has been selling books online since 1996, and is a private company based in Victoria, BC Canada, with offices in Düsseldorf, Germany.

Richard Davies, PR & Publicity Mgr.,
Ph: 250-412-3238

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Richard Davies
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