Smart Back to School Shopping


The leaves might not have changed colors yet and the mercury is still high but it’s time to think about school once more. College especially can be a hectic time, as moving in and purchasing your own books is an extra layer of stress. Alibris is happy to help make this transition as smooth as possible.

New and Used Textbooks

As a marketplace of thousands of sellers across the country and over 175 million items, we’ll have what you need. New textbooks can easily cost hundreds of dollars and your school bookstore might have a limited number of used copies for sale. Take advantage of being able to shop across many stores with one shopping cart.

The best way to ensure you get the correct textbook is to search by ISBN, a 10- or 13-digit code that’s unique to each version of a book. Many textbooks are updated frequently and have multiple editions with different homework problems or newly discovered research. If your professor lists only the title of a book, ask for the ISBN to be sure you purchase the correct one.

Save on Access Codes

Many courses also require you to purchase access codes for websites to do homework, such as Pearson’s Mastering Physics. They’re on a physical card that has a unique combination of letters and numbers that can only be used once. New books can be bundled with these codes but your instructor might not use it for their class. Used textbooks don’t come with these, which is why school stores suggest you buy a new book every time.

Luckily for you, we sell these codes as well! Like your books, these also have an ISBN that you can use to look up the exact version you’ll need. Your professor will be able to tell you which you’ll need.  Combined with a used book you can save big.

Trade Books, Professional Books, and Fiction

Of course, many classes and majors specialize in books that aren’t considered textbooks. A journalism major who needs the latest AP style guide? Want cover options for the novels for your Tolkien class? Need to brush up on Go while you apply for your co-op at Google? Curious to see what’s all the fuss about Good Omens? We have in stock pretty much any book you can think of, both new and used, as well as audiobooks. large print, international editions, and other languages!

Clubs and professional organizations might recommend you books that your school store won’t carry since they’re not textbooks on any class’ list. A common one is Cracking the Coding Interview which prepares programmers for the unique interview questions they’ll face when applying to companies like Apple and Microsoft. Weapons of Math Destruction covers how algorithms in products and services are influenced by implicit bias and shape the world around us. Thought leaders, scientists, and even your professors will write new books that will help you grow as a professional as you continually learn.

Sell Back to Save Even More

The semester is over and it’s time to think about getting even more books. What about those old ones taking up space in your dorm? Sell them back to Alibris for cash to buy more textbooks, supplies or anything else you want! We’ll even pay for the shipping.