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How I made $82.36selling freebooks on Amazon

How I Made $82.36 Selling Free Books On Amazon

Staggering numbers right?

Hahaha, hey I said this was done with FREE books, plus I kind of just did the work up front and every now and then I have a book sell and I just run over to the post office.

Now, this took place over about 2 months and for those wondering, $82.36 was my net profit.

Here’s how I did it and why you should try it too, it takes a little work, but it’s free money.

Plus if you don’t half-ass it (like I did lol) you can really scale this up, I know someone who’s made a full-time income selling books on Amazon.

Now I’ll admit I learned this make money from home method from my good friend known as “Zero Fatz” and you can see a WAY more in-depth way to do this in his membership site (cleverly placed affiliate link here, tee hee).

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But for now, you can go for my ghetto version and still make some moolah ;).

Tools of the Trade

*I save money wherever I can just FYI, you should too*

  • Bookshelf: You can pick one up off of Craigslist for free usually (go to the getting free books section below on how to do this).
HP Printer
  • Printer: My girlfriend prints out copies for me from her work, hahaha just being honest. Alternatively you can just buy one (as long as it prints in black and white it’s fine) here’s a decent little printer from Amazon.
  • Bubble Mailers: The one thing I did buy was Kraft #2 bubble mailers, 8.5X12. Perfect for most books and you can buy them in bulk for cheap.
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  • Packing tape: I haven’t bought packing tape yet because my roommate has some and it hasn’t finished lol. You will need it however, pick some up at your local Walmart, Family Dollar-type store, or just add this tape to your Amazon order along with the bubble mailers and printer. (You could print your copies at the local library it’s roughly $0.20 per copy, at least in Irving, TX).
  • Computer: Laptop or desktop will work as long as you can access your Amazon Seller account and print. (If you work at an office, just print your stuff there for free or use your local library just remember it’s going to cost you PER copy there).
  • Scale: Digital is better, here’s a nice scale you can get from Amazon.
  • Boxes: You will come across books that are bigger and heavier (make sure and check how much others are selling these for to see if they’re worth posting). The bigger and heavier they are, the more likely they’ll need a box. Check with your local Walmart, ask an employee when they throw boxes out (they have tons) and come around the store and take them for free. Usually, they get rid of them in the morning. (If you don’t want to buy boxes, stick with acquiring books that are small enough to fit in your bubble mailers).
  • Notecards: Feedback related, keep reading to find out why 😉 Oh and you can pick these up at….pretty much anywhere, just keep it cheap.

Finding free books

Craigslist people.If you didn’t know this already, people give away stuff on Craiglist all the time (hint: it doesn’t stop with books, people give away older TVs, furniture, kids clothes, you name it).

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It’s in alphabetical order kiddos, just in case you don’t see it hehe.

Anyhow, this next part requires some rocket science (can you note the sarcasm?).

You hit the “free” tab in the “for sale” section and then look for books.

People give away all kinds of books, make sure the commute is worth your while wherever you go.

Where I had luck was with a “community library”, a smaller library than usual.

You see what I found out is that they have library sales, but they don’t always sell everything, naturally.

What happens with these small “mom and pop-ish” (we’ll roll with that) libraries is that they’re small and run out of space easily.

I saw that one library put an ad out on Craigslist and after I picked up my first batch of free books, I found out that they clean house every month.

TIP: Befriend them and get a business card or number to call to see if you can come by and take away whatever you can, they’ll have boxes and if they don’t accommodate them.

  • Sell books you have already
  • Ask friends/family to donate books to you if they need space
  • Don’t go for free, attend library sales, garage sales (you can see garage sales posted on Craigslist often), and find them at thrift stores too for cheap. If you buy books KEEP YOUR COSTS DOWN, don’t pay $5 per book, you want to be in the $0.25-$1 tops range, but it better be a good book.
Now most of the free books you get will be…well complete crap.

This is ok because you can sell books on consignment to save space (I haven’t done this yet to be honest, but I will soon).

If not you could just donate them to Goodwill if you’re feeling rather generous.

Keep the ones that are more likely to sell.

What kind of books to sell (for the most part)

You may be thinking to yourself “Hey I’ll just find best sellers, they’ve got to sell!”

Be careful though because most best sellers are EVERYWHERE, so their demand is not high.

I like heeding Zero Fatz;s advice on staying in the top 5.5% of books ranked by Amazon.

What does this mean?

I’m glad you asked my adorable, little friend.

If you haven’t already, create a seller’s account with Amazon.

I wouldn’t mess with a Professional Account until you can sell at least 40+ books or items per month, stick with selling as an individual until you scale it up.

Ok back to the 5.5%.Once you create your account, go to Inventory>Add a Product

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You’ll type in a book’s name or ISBN number (usually located on the back or on the first couple of pages in the book unless it’s older than 1970 or so).

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You’ll click on Product Details, let the page load up, and then find where it says “Amazon Best Sellers Rank”.Screen Shot 2015-08-27 at 12.24.16 AM
There are currently 61,949, 476 books ranked by Amazon right now, that means that to stay in the top 5.5% you want your book to rank within 1-3,407,221.

This number is based on how fast the book sells and a few other things I don’t understand.

The closer you are to #1 ranking the more likely your book is to get sold faster UNLESS there are a gazillion copies of that book (you may have noticed that some places sell books for $.01) move on if the first couple of pages are littered with this.

Exceptions to the 5.5% rule

For the most part, the 5.5% rule works well, but the exceptions to the rule are:
  • New books (or at least close enough)
  • Obscure Non-Fiction books
  • Audio books

I’ll give an example…take a book that’s all about taking care of Shih-Tzu’s okay, it might not sell like crazy, but it’s niched down enough that someone out there is going to pay decent money to get that specific book therefore it’s worth keeping it on your shelf for the long haul.

Charge a little more for rare books like these.

Book condition guidelines

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Ok, so you have your books and you’ve done your research on whether they can sell for a decent amount.

(You want to be able to list your book for about $2, minimum).

DO NOT think that it is cool to lie about the condition of one of your books, you will get bad feedback if you’re not truthful, YOU DO NOT WANT THIS!

Sorry, had to get that off my chest.

It’s hard to get feedback in this game, don’t shoot yourself in the foot by being a stupid liar.

I have just 1 positive review despite selling over $80 of books in 14 transactions.

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You want to be honest with people.

Tell them it has scratches, nicks, that the book is written in, etc. I HATE seeing “We are the best book seller in the F___ing world, blah, blah, blah…”


Tell me about the book!

What you can do is simply look at the book condition guidelines and get rid of generic statements and make them specific to the book. Below is an example of a book that sold for me.

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You see how I used this copy instead of just copy or this book, it’s specific to the book.

I’d say go ahead and throw in “this copy of ______”

I’ve done that on other books too.

This was the last book I sold on the 24th of this month.


This part is simple, make sure and add a handwritten notecard saying “Hey thanks for your purchase, if you like my service I’d love some good feedback”.

It may take a while to get it, but it’s inexpensive and can at least PREVENT negative feedback, which is great!

Also, add a packing slip to your books too.

It just looks more professional.

That’s it for that 😉

Wow, this post is getting long lol, it’s time to wrap it up kiddos.


You don’t have to be an expert to start selling these little books on Amazon as you can see.

I haven’t even gone full force on it and I’ve made some money.

It’s a little work up front, but once you post your books they just sell here and there and it’s friggin’ cool, at least I think so.

In this post we covered:
  • The tools of the trade and where you can find them
  • How to find free books (and some cheap ones too)
  • What kind of books to sell
  • Exceptions to the 5.5% rule
  • Book condition guidelines
  • A simple little feedback tip
I hope you have enjoyed this post and get off your butt and take action.

I will remind you that this little ghetto version is just my specific way of selling free books on Amazon, you’ll learn things along the way.

If you want a little more of a step-by-step, in-depth, video and written instructions-laden (hmm yeah we’ll go with that) method on how to scale this up, you HAVE to check out my boy Zero Fatz’s membership site.

Try it for 1 month and learn what you can just to get started, I assure you he knows his stuff when it comes to selling books, ebooks, Amazon FBA, and much, much more I’m a member there as well and there are just SO many perks.

I’ll remind everyone that there are affiliate links in here, but I’m only recommending things I use as well and any purchase you make through them comes at absolutely no additional cost to you.

And…we’re done lol.

Alright kiddos, I know you have tons of opinions on what I might have left out, tell me so in the comments below 😉

Before I depart I will share this one video that makes me laugh like a little schoolgirl:

Thanks guys!-Phil

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