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How to Re-introduce Students to Buyback

Posted by Liz Schulte on 4/11/22 6:30 AM
Topics: buyback, used books, textbook buyback

After the last couple years, many students on campus haven’t participated in or experienced a “typical” buyback. This term, make a plan to introduce, or re-introduce, students to the benefits of selling back their course materials.

How to reintroduce students to buyback

As you know, a successful buyback event gives your store the opportunity to buy back course materials that will be used again, which, in turn, helps students recoup some of their course material costs and provides more low-cost used book options the next term. However, the pandemic changed buyback on many campuses.

Now, a lot of students on campus may not be familiar with buyback or understand how it works. This gives your store an opportunity to reframe buyback for students and show them how it is beneficial.

Create multiple buyback opportunities

Before you start promoting buyback, it is good to have a plan. What buyback opportunities will you offer this term and how can you quickly get everything set up on your end? Let’s review the main options available to stores for buyback:

On-campus buyback and rental return
A traditional on-campus buyback is still a great choice. A campus event can help draw attention and adds a lot of convenience for students who are returning rentals and selling their other books that they no longer need. These events also help ensure students don’t accidentally sell back their rental books. Check out these tips for planning an on-campus buyback.

Online buyback

MBS Online Buyback is a wholesale buyback site where students can easily sell back their books and educational materials while still avoiding crowds. The process is simple:

  • Students visit your school-branded website
  • They generate a price quote and prepaid shipping label
  • Students ship their books directly to MBS

We mail them a check or deposit funds into their PayPal account. Meanwhile, your store earns a commission on each buyback purchase that MBS makes through the store site. Learn more about MBS Online Buyback.

Daily Buys

Another option that offers students a lot of convenience is simply hosting a daily buy. This can help cut down buyback crowds and offer students access to this specialized service for an extended length of time.

With a daily buy, a student can sell back a book any time they come into the store (or during set times established by the store). The store uses the current buyback database to purchase the book and sends the wholesale buyback books back to the wholesaler in a guide shipment (usually once a month). Stores are then reimbursed for the books, plus they earn commission. Learn more about daily buys.

Explain and promote buyback

Tackle explaining buyback as if students have never heard the term before or sold back a single book. Explain how buyback benefits students (recoup costs, lower course material prices for the next term, helping the environment by reusing existing materials, etc.).

Look for ways to get this information to students. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Posters and signage
  • Educating your staff to bring buyback up with student customers
  • Social media posts
  • Social media video explaining how buyback works
  • Contact the school paper about doing a story about how students can sell books back to the bookstore at the end of term — remember to keep the focus on student benefits
  • Post a reminder on the school’s LMS
  • Emails and text messages
  • Work with your school’s marketing department on additional options for raising buyback awareness

A checklist to help prepare for the event

Contact your MBS representative to help you prepare for your buyback event(s). Here are some ways they can help:

  • Offer advice on selecting a good campus location
  • Make a logistics plan for setting up the event
  • Order your free MBS marketing materials when you utilize our buyback and rental return services
  • Create a custom buyback list - Some titles used on your campus this term might not have wholesale values listed in our buying guide. MBS Custom Buyback gives you a chance to provide students more value for their books during buyback by reviewing those titles that don’t have a wholesale value listed. Just send the list of titles used on your campus this term to your MBS representative and they will create a custom buyback list that is specific to your campus.
  • If you are a Premier Partner, make suggestions for how to use your MBS Promo Dollars
  • Give you promotional ideas
  • Assist in downloading the latest MBS guide and test that it is working as intended

Set up an MBS Online Buyback in three easy steps. Get started  


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