For immediate release


(Victoria, BC – 5 September 2006) Prices for both new and secondhand college textbooks found on the Internet are falling thanks to fierce competition among Web-based booksellers, according to – the world’s largest online marketplace for new and used books.

The average sales price for all textbooks, both new and used, sold on in August 2005 was $34, but last month that figure fell to $32 as sellers offered cut-price books at increasingly cheaper prices in a highly competitive market.

An example of lower pricing is Marketing Management (March 05 edition ISBN 0131457578) by Philip Kotler – a key text for business studies. A year ago, the cheapest price at was $51 but now prices start at $7.99. In August 2005, its retail list price was $140 but today it is $153.

Marketing: An Introduction (Feb 04 edition ISBN 0131424106) by Philip Kotler and Gary Armstrong is another example. A year ago, the cheapest used copy at was $70 but today secondhand prices start at $15.34. Its retail list price is $121 – up from $112 from 12 months ago.

With record numbers of students now using the Internet to avoid sky-high prices at bricks and mortar stores,’s monthly top 10 best-seller list for August features only university textbooks for the first time in the company’s 10-year history.

It shows students of sciences, mathematics, accounting and business are the heaviest online buyers:

  1. Biology by N. Campbell, J. Reece
  2. Principles of Anatomy and Physiology by G. Tortora, S. Grabowski
  3. Lehinger Principles of Biochemistry by D. Nelson, M. Cox, A. Lehninger
  4. Managerial Accounting by R. Garrison
  5. Calculus: Early Transcendentals by J. Stewart
  6. Intermediate Accounting by D. Spiceland
  7. Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association
  8. Intermediate Accounting by D. Kieso, J. Weygandt
  9. Human Anatomy and Physiology by E. Marieb
  10. Principles of Marketing by P. Kotler, G. Armstrong normally sells up to 25,000 books each day but enjoyed sales that were 20% higher during August.

“Booksellers are aware prices can be compared instantly online so they are adjusting prices on a daily basis to stay competitive,” said Lisa Stevens, VP of marketing at “That’s good news for students who are turning to the Internet in record numbers. We estimate 25% of America’s college students will have bought at least one textbook online for the fall semester by the end of September.”


About is the world’s largest online marketplace for books, with over 80 million new, used, rare, and out-of-print titles listed for sale by thousands of independent booksellers from around the world. AbeBooks has millions of customers who purchase up to 25,000 books a day from its 5 global websites. A true internet success story, AbeBooks has been selling books online since 1996, and is a private company based in Victoria, BC Canada, with offices in Germany, Spain and USA. Internet Retailer magazine ranked AbeBooks at No. 67 among North America’s online retailers in June 2006.

Richard Davies, PR & Publicity Mgr.,
Office Ph: 250-412-3238 / e-mail