Question {About Book Scouting}

by Anonymous
(Location Unknown)

September 19, 2012


How long do you spend at each scouting location? I am just curious as to other fellow scouter's scanning habits.

I spend quite a bit longer than the average person when I scan books. I am verrrry thorough.

Can you give some examples at how long it takes you at different types of locations?

Response:


September 19, 2012

Since I scout a preset route each day I'm pretty familiar with the available inventory at each location.

Therefore, I allow one hour for each stop on my route, including drive time. I typically try to space my stops about 15 minutes apart so that gives me 45 minutes to scan each location.

I don't always need 45 minutes, especially if no new books have been put out since my last visit. When that happens I can be in and out in less than ten minutes. I understand that some internet book sellers need more than that.

Sometimes I need more time if there are lots of new books on the shelves and/or I'm carefully browsing through a vintage book store. Under those circumstances I may need the entire 45 minutes or more to do a thorough job.

Of course, none of these estimates include time I spend at library book sales.

Using these criteria, I try to hit at least eight Phoenix book stores per day. Often I'm able to do more because I don't normally use my entire 45 minute allotment at each stop. So I keep reserve stops on hand in case I have time to hit a couple of more places.

On other days I'm running late and can't do all eight stops in one day. That's okay so long as I'm meeting my quota for the day. If I'm not meeting my quota, I keep going until I reach my minimum number of books purchases for the day. That can take me right up to 9pm if it's a slow day.

Fortunately, that doesn't happen very often.

If you have more questions, don't hesitate to ask using the Contact Me Form. Also, you can registister with my Internet Booksellers Forum and get help from dozens of experienced booksellers from around the world.

Joe Waynick
Bookseller, Author, Mentor

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Original Comment: November 28, 2014 Just to add to Joe's excellent rebuttal to Anonymous' overly simplified post, just because a thrift store …

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