Did you know there is a stress-free way of selling books online for profit? Whether you are downsizing or want to get rid of old textbooks, you can sell books by ISBN.

It’s one of the easiest ways to make a profit online.

But what is ISBN? And what has that got to do with your textbooks? Stick around!

We’ll explain how to look up book value by ISBN and other perks to make the journey easy for you. 

Let’s dive right in. 


What Is An ISBN? 

An ISBN is your best friend. But it can also be your worst enemy when you want to look up book value by ISBN.

It all depends on how well you know it and how easily you can find it. 

And it doesn’t matter if you sell outdated textbooks or not on various bookselling websites.

ISBN is an acronym that stands for Standard Book Number.

You can usually find a numerical code at the top of a book’s barcode or publication information page.

Think of the code as a social security number that identifies the textbook’s publisher, where it was published, and its edition. 

A book’s edition is the first time a publisher releases a new book.

If the initial book release sells out and the publisher produces another book, it’s called a second edition.

However, there have to be substantial changes made to the textbook.

So we have 3rd edition, 4th edition, 5th edition, etc. 

Every Book Has Different ISBNs

Every book, including its numerous editions, has different ISBNs, especially textbooks.

Almost every book published after 1970 has an ISBN. ISBNs have 10 or 13 digits long.

The 13-digit ISBNs start with the numbers 978, and the 10-digit ISBNs begin with 0 or 1, particularly in the U.S. 

If a publisher releases a book in a different country, the 10-digit ISBN might start with a different number.

So what do all these mean to you? And how does it help you sell books by ISBN? 

If you want to find out how much your book is worth, you need to find your book value by ISBN.

And you can do that by entering your book’s ISBN on BookDeal.com.

BookDeal will take it from there and tell you how much different buyback companies will pay for your book.

That’s how easy to sell textbooks online.

It sounds simple, but not always to check the value of books by ISBN number. 

Problems With Searching Books By ISBN 

searching books by isbn

Most of the time, ISBN is the best way to sell textbooks, even if you plan to sell outdated books.

Scan the barcode at the back of your textbook using a barcode scanner.

However, sometimes, the barcode doesn’t contain the ISBN. Instead, you will find the Universal Product Code (UPC).

The UPC is a different set of numbers that can also identify a book. 

Unfortunately, most places that sell books by ISBN don’t recognize the UPC, which means you won’t find any information concerning the book.

You can determine if a barcode contains a UPC or ISBN by looking at the numbers below the barcode. 

If the numbers start with 978, it’s an ISBN. Otherwise, it’s usually a UPC.

ISBNs Covered With A Sticker

Sometimes, your book’s barcode may contain an ISBN but might be covered with a sticker from the book store it’s being sold in.

These stickers come with their barcode, so no information will pop up if you scan them. 

If you encounter such situations, you can peel off the sticker enough to see the actual ISBN barcode.

But make sure it doesn’t damage the book’s ISBN barcode.

Sometimes, removing the sticker might not be possible because the bookstores stuck it too hard. 

It can be frustrating. Believe us, we know! 

Most people give up early whenever they are faced with this challenge.

It’s not their fault. Searching books by ISBN to make extra money online can be fun.

But problems like these can cause headaches if you don’t develop an excellent strategy to overcome them. 

So how do you get on top of these challenges? Here’s how. 


Three Places To Find The ISBN Barcode 

You can usually find the ISBN barcode on your book’s back cover.

That’s the most common place to search for, but it’s not the only place where it is located.

If, for some reason, you cannot see the ISBN on the back cover, search for the ISBN somewhere else in the book. 

For example, turn to the inside front cover if the book is a paperback.

Most paperback books have a second ISBN barcode found inside the front cover.

If the book is a hardcover with a just jacket, search the dust jacket’s insider edges.

It’s possible to see the ISBN barcode there too. 

As stated earlier, sometimes, a book may not contain a barcode or be covered with a sticker.

But it can have an ISBN you can locate.

In such a situation, you need to manually input the ISBN into your smartphone, laptop, or tablet.

That’s because there is no barcode to scan with your barcode scanner. 

It can be frustrating, but if you have a book you think can sell for lots of money, it’s worth a shot.

It will take a little bit of your time to type in the ISBN.

However, since numerous book dealers may have rejected or passed over, it increases your chances of getting more value for the book.

Other Places To Find An ISBN  

sell books by isbn

First of all, take a look at the back cover again. It doesn’t matter if it might not have a barcode.

You might still find an ISBN printed on the back of a book or a sticker. If it doesn’t work, turn to the publication information page.

Usually, it’s the first five pages of the book. You can find the ISBN there. However, you have to tread carefully here.

You can sometimes find multiple ISBNs on the publication information page for the paperback and hardcover book versions.

So to check the value of books by ISBN number, you need to enter the book version’s ISBN.

If you find the best time to sell textbooks, ISBN can make the process easier.


There’s nothing to worry about if you want to sell books by ISBN.

If you look at the challenges you can face with finding an ISBN, it’s nothing compared to the book’s value.

Usually, it won’t take much of your time, and you will find the ISBN code most of the time.

So you have nothing to worry about if you want to sell books by ISBN. 

Searching for books by ISBN is one of the easiest and fastest ways to get paid for your textbooks.

If you want to sell books by ISBN, we recommend BookDeal.com. We sell your books and ensure you get the highest price.

We provide that the selling process is smooth, and we have a vast network of reliable book-buying companies. 

Selling books online for profit is possible. Visit BookDeal.com and find your book value by ISBN.

Check out other relevant articles if you want to know how to sell books.



1. What does ISBN stand for?

An ISBN stands for International Standard Book Number. It shows the title, registrant, format, and edition of products used by bookstores, publishers, libraries, etc.

2. What is ISBN?

An ISBN is a 13-digit number uniquely used to identify books and book-like products published intentionally. ISBNs are calculated using a particular mathematical formula, and a check digit is used to validate the number.

3. How do I get an ISBN for my self-published book?

The method to acquire an ISBN as a self-publisher is the same as any other publisher. You can purchase an ISBN or get a free ISBN from your self-publishing platform. If you’re a U.S. resident, you can buy an ISBN via Bowker. For more information, check out ISBN International and MyIdentifiers.

4. How much does an ISBN cost?

You can purchase a single ISBN on Bowker if you want a less expensive alternative. However, if you publish another book edition or another book altogether, you will need more ISBNs. The best option is to buy the 10-back bundle.

A single ISBN costs $125, while 10 ISBNs cost $295.100 ISBNs cost $575 and 1,000 ISBNs cost $1,500. Keep in mind that these prices are what is listed on Bowker.

5. What is the difference between ISBN-10 and ISBN-13?

The difference between ISBN-10 and ISBN-13 is the prefix “978” in front of the 13-digit. That results in a different check digit. However, it doesn’t mean that adding “978” at the beginning of an ISBN-10 will automatically become ISBN-13.


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