The question isn’t if you should collect sales tax because that is impossible to do on most sites except eBay.  Trying to collect sales taxes would kill sales if you are the only one doing it.  Now – I am not a lawyer or accountant so I will simply tell you what I do – which is to pay my states sales taxes.

Some states do not require you to pay sales taxes on online business but I know where I live requires it.  So I pay the few hundred dollars a year.  I hate doing it (though my wife handles figuring out what I owe which is the most frustrating part).  I don’t do it to be moral or anything but I do it because I am running a business and do not want to jeopardize my bookselling business by cutting corners.  I don’t do mental gymnastics over this decision – I just keep it simple and cut the check to the state and I have no worries.  I did my research about whether I need to pay and that was that.

If you sell books online check with your accountant ( if oyou have one) or go to your states website and start doing your research – or just ignore it and hope you have no reason to be concerned

There is almost never a case when I do not accept returns - most markets require you to accept them (see Amazon's A-Z policy). I keep my return policy simple. The only time I have not accepted a return is when a significant amount of time has passed between the purchase date and the return date or if the books condition is materially different from when I sold it (such as full of highlighting). Sometimes it is easy to lose sight of the customer experience when I run a business from home and do not interact with the customers. Continue reading
What does CWS mean for us booksellers? Not much. You will not have your account credited until you ship a book. If you use The Art of Books or a similar inventory management system Amazon should be automatically updated when the book is shipped. There are a couple of downsides to Amazon's Charge When Shipped - you do not get to send your own confirmation email to the buyer and the buyer can still leave feedback on a canceled order. Continue reading
Sales of the Kindle are one thing but it remains to be seen if people are actually going to adapt to using it as their primary way to read - as we have seen with Amazon recenlty deleting Orwell titles there are several issues with the Kindle that will effect its popularity. Continue reading

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Filed under: GeneralSelling books online

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