Buyback Guide

 

Introduction

We love buyback. It’s a powerful tool for acquiring books straight from your customers, cutting out wholesalers, suppliers and publishers. Since you don’t pay third party prices for these books, buyback lets you acquire inventory cheaply, which puts you in control. And of course if you are in control, your store is free to grow.

These aren’t the only ways to leverage the buyback process, but these are some of the great ones:

  • If the book is one you know you’ll need for a future term, retain it. You just lowered your sourcing costs, and you’re keeping local inventory in the local market.
  • If the book is valuable on an external marketplace, and you have the logistical resources to sell online, sell it. External marketplaces allow you to expand your customer demographic worldwide. Sidewalk Marketplace allows you sell directly to (and source directly from!) your peers in the bookstore industry.
  • If you have the ability to source cheaply and don’t need to be tied to a wholesaler’s buyback guide, you can also get a little crazy with your buyback prices. It’s possible to source inventory at great prices (which makes you happy) and to give your customers fair market value for their books (which makes them very happy). Happy customers tell their friends.

This document lists the quickest, smoothest way to complete Sidewalk Pro’s buyback processes. We’ve even added in a bit about buyback-specific price rules.

Before Buyback

A successful Buyback begins with sound preparation. Here are some system topics to explore before your Buyback:

Labels

Since our system prints a label for each book that is purchased you will want to have sufficient labels on hand for your buyback.  For serialized book inventory the system will print a new serial ID. For non- serialized book inventory a used book label will be printed.  Labels will display information to help you sort your books.

Buying Guides

What guides do you intend to use for your Buyback pricing?  You should check to see your store’s wholesalers and active guides to be sure that PRO has appropriate guides active for you to use. To see what wholesaler guides your store has access to:

  1. Click the Ship menu at the top of the page.
  2. Click Wholesaler Ship next to the  icon.
  3. The “Begin Wholesaler Ship” window will open, showing you all wholesalers that you have access to.
  4. You can select on a particular Wholesaler to see the dates for the buy guides. The guides are listed from more recent to oldest.
  5. Cancel out of the Wholesale Ship process when you have viewed all necessary information. 

If you do not see your partner wholesalers or an active buy guide which you intend to use please contact Sidewalk Support.

Promos

You may wish to consider running a promotion during buyback to encourage students to bring their books to your buyback, or for rewarding other customer behavior such as purchasing from your store and selling back to your store.  There are many buyback promo options which would increase the dollar value paid to your customer.  You can set up a Buyback promotion by clicking on the Admin drop down menu and then clicking on Promos. Further help in setting up a Buyback promotion can be found in the Knowledge Base or by contacting Sidewalk PRO support.

Here are some system settings to set before Buyback:

In Options>General>Retail tab: Buy Return Deadline

  1. Click the Options menu and select the General option.  You will be on the Retail tab.
  2. The very first setting on the Retail tab is the “Buy Return Deadline.”  This is the deadline for a customer to get a refund on a buyback transaction. This can be confusing, since a refund on a buyback transaction involves the store returning the book to the customer and the customer returning tender (usually cash) to the store.
  3. Enter the last date for which your store will accept a buyback transaction return. 

Rounding Buyback Prices

  1. Click the Options menu and select the General option.  You will be on the Retail tab.
  2. About halfway down the screen, you will see a setting labeled “Round Buys to nearest Dollar.”
  3. Click this checkbox if you wish your buyback pricing to be rounded to the nearest dollar when a Promo code is being used. This setting only applies if the user scans a Promo code for the transaction.
  4. If you have an open buyback cart with books scanned into it, you will need to close and re-open the cart, then re-scan the books to see this setting take effect.

In Options>General>Pricing tab:

 

Price Caching

  1. Click the Options menu and select General.
  2. When the Edit General Options window appears, select the Pricing tab.
  3. Note that you can set different price caches for your store and website.
  4. The Price Caching setting will determine how often a price is computed using the price rules and overrides that you have set. It speeds look-up times to set a longer price cache, but you will not see price changes until your cache time expires. During peak business times you may wish to have a long cache time to optimize performance. During times when you are making price changes you may wish to have “No Cache” set.
  5. When you have set your desired price cache settings, click OK to exit the window.

In Options>Markets>Amazon tab: Use Amazon Setting

  1. Click the Options menu and select Markets.
  2. When the Edit Market Options window appears, select the Amazon tab.
  3. Regardless of whether or not you have an active Amazon seller account you can reference Amazon prices to inform your buyback prices by checking the Use Amazon checkbox.
  4. NOTE:  If you select a Buy Price Rule that uses Amazon this setting will enable Amazon pricing to be considered in your buyback pricing offers. Do not “Use Amazon” if you only wish to buy books for your Catalog or for Wholesalers.  If you are using Amazon you will acquire books that have value on Amazon but not necessarily on a Wholesale guide.  This is an opportunity for additional profit using a non-traditional channel for selling.

In Catalog>Catalog Perspective: Buying Dates for Terms

For what terms are you buying books?  You should be sure to have your Buying Dates set correctly to include the terms for which you are buying and to exclude terms for which you do not want to buy. To check Buying Dates for a term:

  1. In the Catalog perspective right click on school name and click to expand.
  2. Choose a Term name and click to load the term.
  3. Once the term is loaded you can right click on the term name to Edit the Term.
  4. In the Edit Term screen you should ensure that the term is open for buying and the buying dates are set appropriately so that during your Buyback period you will be buying books for this term. (In addition this is a good time to set the other pertinent dates for the upcoming term.)

In Admin>Price Rules: Buyback Price Rules

This section has been copied and adapted from our complete Price Rules Summary. Be sure to check out the full Price Rules Summary; for now, though, we’ll stick to focusing on Buyback.

Buyback Price Rules Glossary:

Target: Target is a special flag that can be attached to a title. All Target titles are subject to a different Price Rule for buyback than books that are not flagged.  Typically, this allows a store to pay a premium price for these books, since these will be valuable on either wholesale guides or external marketplaces. 

Good Target: When attempting to complete a buyback transaction on a Target Book, it must meet certain criteria if it is to be considered a “good” Target (see the image below Bad Target’s definition). If it does not, the book will be marked as a Bad Target book and can be priced differently. This will ensure that the store never pays a premium price for a book that is not in excellent condition.

Bad Target: When attempting to complete a Buyback transaction on a Target Book that does not meet the specified criteria, it will be marked as a Bad Target book and can be priced at a lower amount.

Catalog: Catalog books are adopted textbooks that are bought back from students while the inventory level is below the set quota. Since there is still an open quota on Catalog books, the store might choose to pay a premium for them until the quota is met.

Quota: Quota is a quantity set for a particular title that indicates the number of that title you wish to purchase at Buyback. While a title has an unmet Quota it is considered a Catalog book. After the quota has been met it will be considered a Standard book. When our system is computing the remaining Quota 

Standard: Standard books are ones that do not meet the requirements for Catalog or for Target.

Commonly Used Buyback Price Rules:

Hovering a mouse pointer over any field in a price rule will generate a short description of that field.

All Wholesalers Advanced Buyer Buy Price V2:

This Rule looks at all of the store’s wholesaler guides and returns the amount that is most advantageous for the store. It checks Amazon prices only in the event that the book is not on any of the guides the store has access to. It will only check Amazon if the “Use Amazon” setting is checked in Options>Markets>Amazon.  This rule can be very effective for using market driven pricing to establish your buyback pricing for Standard, Target and Catalog books.

Basic:

The Basic Tab only applies only to books that are designated as Target Books.  This multiplier will be applied with the Wholesaler Good Target or Wholesaler Bad Target percentages to compute a price offer for Targeted books.

  • Percent of target: This percentage will be applied to the result of the Wholesale Good Target settings.
  • Percent of Bad Target: This percentage will be applied to the result of the Wholesale Bad Target settings.

The system does require a numeric entry in these fields but if you have not targeted any books the percentages will have no impact on your buy.

Wholesaler:

The Wholesaler Tab only applies to books that are NOT targeted.  If you use this rule for Target books the entries on this page will not be used. Our system requires an entry in each field even if not used.

  • Percent of Wholesaler:  If set to 100% this would return the highest wholesale guide price exactly. Setting above 100% would return a price higher than the highest guide price offer.
  • Rank A-E: Sidewalk determines Wholesaler ranking through a combination of factors, much like Amazon determines their book ranking.

A-level books, for example, are premium. They are very valuable to most of the wholesaler guides, and certainly sellable on the open market.

E-level books might not be carried on the next wholesaler guide, so they might not be valuable to buyback. Or they might just be very low-value books, and not a title a store would want to chase.

For premium books, a store might choose to input over 100% into these fields. By offering customers a premium price, the store can both secure customer loyalty and save money by sourcing without relying on wholesalers.

  • Wholesaler Good Target

These settings will only apply to a book designated as a Good Target Book if the title is on a wholesaler guide.  If this rule is used for Standard or Catalog pricing the entries made on the Basic, Wholesaler Good Target and Wholesaler Bad Target will be ignored. 

  • Wholesaler Bad Target

These settings will only apply to a book designated as a Bad Target Book if is on a wholesaler guide.  If this rule is used for Standard or Catalog pricing the entries made on the Basic, Wholesaler Good Target and Wholesaler Bad Target will be ignored.

 

  • Amazon: If no wholesale price exists, this rule will then look at the following Amazon criteria:

Maximum Buy Rank: The Rule will only price out books that fall at or below a certain Amazon ranking.

 Amazon Ceiling: This is the highest amount the store would pay the student if the title is not on a wholesale guide. The ceiling is there to keep the store from spending too much on buyback.

1-2500: This will price the book at a specific percent of the Amazon Qualified Low if the book is ranked 1-2500 on Amazon.

25001-50000: The remaining fields will allow the store to price each group of ranked books differently until the Maximum Buy Rank is reached.

 

Quota Buyback Pricing with a Modern Marketplace Twist

If you would like additional information about using the All Wholesalers Advanced Buyer Buy Price V2 to price titles that are adopted for the upcoming term, we’ve created a video for you, and put it on YouTube:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2oTb0F8wI0g

 

Priority All Wholesalers Advanced Buyer Buy Price Version 2:

This Price Rule will look first at a specific guide indicated in the Basic tab. If the book is not on that guide, it will look at each of the store’s other guides and function the same as All Wholesalers Advanced Buyer Buy Price V2. This may be used if the store has a contractual obligation or receives other benefits to send books back to a certain wholesaler, making that wholesaler worth considering before any others, regardless of the wholesaler’s offerings.

 

 

Clear Price Overrides

In Admin > Clear Price Overrides:  

  1. Click the Admin menu and select Clear Price Overrides, next to the  icon.
  2. Select the Channel and Type.
  3. Select .
  4. The Confirm Clear Price Overrides window will appear. Click OK to confirm.
  5. The Manager Required window will appear. Enter Manager or Admin credentials to proceed.
  6. Caution: This is a method to clear all price overrides for a particular channel, so be careful to confirm your choices before clicking OK.

 

Clear Price Overrides Report: 

  1. Click the Admin menu and select Clear Price Overrides, next to the  icon.
  2. Select the Channel and Type. 
  3. Select 

 

Here are some title settings to determine before Buyback:

Buyback Notes per Title

  1. Click the Search menu and select Title Search, next to the  icon. 
  2. Enter ISBN, Description or Author. 
  3. Select desired title from the results. 
  4. Select the  button. 
  5. Enter desired notes in the Buy text box (top field) and select OK. 

Blacklist a Title

  1. Click the Search menu and select Title Search, next to the  icon. 
  2. Enter ISBN, Description or Author. 
  3. Select desired title from the results. 
  4. Select the  button. 
  5. A Blacklist Title window will pop up where you can put notes as to why you're blacklisting the title. 
  6. Repeat steps 1-4 to see why a certain title has been blacklisted. 
  7. This will prevent a title from being purchased at Buyback. 

Remove a Title from Blacklist

  1. Click the Search menu and select Title Search, next to the  icon. 
  2. Enter ISBN, Description or Author. 
  3. Select desired title from the results. 
  4. Select the  button. 
  5. Select the  button. 
  6. Confirm you want to remove the title. 

Buyback Price Override

If no price override is set for a book then the Price Rules will apply.  If the book meets the definition of a Catalog book and there is a Catalog price override then the override price will be offered. Similarly, if the book meets the definition of Standard or Target and a price override is set then the Standard or Target override price will be offered. Overrides trump Price Rules.

  1. Click the Search menu and select Title Search, next to the  icon. 
  2. Enter ISBN, Description or Author. 
  3. Select desired title from the results. 
  4. Select the  button. 
  5. Make sure the "Buy" tab and the "Store" Channel are selected and then click 

Set a Target Book

  1. Click the Search menu and select Title Search, next to the  icon. 
  2. Enter ISBN, Description or Author. 
  3. Select desired title from the results and then click .
  4. Select the check box and then click OK. 
  5. This will inform the system that this title should follow the Target price rules that you have set. 

Set a Quota for a Book (in Merchant)

  1. Click on the Catalog Menu, then Catalog Perspective.
  2. Expand the Term lists and select the Term for your book.
  3. Drill into the listings either by using the tree on the left side of the catalog screen OR by using the arrow icons.
  4. Click on a title to highlight it.
  5. Click on the Edit icon.
  6. When the Edit Listing box opens you will be on the General tab.
  7. You can enter Quota numbers in the field and click OK to complete your entry.

Set a Quota for a Book (in Studio)

In Studio you can search using many different criteria to gather results for entry of Quota and QTP. This may be a more efficient method to enter Quota for a large quantity of titles.

  1. Click on the QTP tab.
  2. Use the search feature to search for the title for which you are setting quota.
  3. When the search results return you can enter the Quota quantity in the Quota field and click OK.

Multi Location Buyback

For stores operating within a multiple location environment we are frequently asked if there is a way to set up a store to offer Catalog rule Buyback prices for other locations. There is not one perfect set-up for this situation because shared catalog Quota quantities will not be added in to the Quota for Catalog books at your location. Depending upon the situation either of the following options may work to help maximize your Buyback results:

 

  1. Add active catalogs to your store to represent the adoptions for other locations. Set up the catalog for the other location(s) as an additional catalog at your location.  This is not the same as setting up a shared catalog. Give it a name to make it obvious that this catalog is for another location.  You may wish to also name the term and departments with a prefix that makes it obvious that this is for a separate location.  Input appropriate Quota quantities in this additional catalog and activate the Buying dates. This other catalog is now part of your active buyback. These quotas will be added to your other active catalog quotas and the books will be purchased at the Catalog price rules prices. Drawback:  In PRO the system cannot see the quantity of titles being purchases at another store, so there is a potential for you to overbuy at catalog prices if locations are running simultaneous buybacks.
  1. Share a catalog with the other location and use this as a reference point at the time of the buyback transaction.  A shared catalog will not be added into Quota values, but Term and Department-Course data will appear in the line item when you scan a book into the Buyback cart.  If a book is scanned and is not pulling a Catalog price but you see Term and Course data from your shared catalog you could increase your offer for that book. Drawback:  This would be an individual decision title by title which could result in uneven pricing and will increase the transaction time.

Buyback

Let's start with the basic process for Buyback. Skip a couple sections, though, to see how the Buyback cart can help you sort your textbooks.

Basic Buyback Process (Cash Tender)

  1. Select a register (if you haven't already) by clicking the register button, .
  2. Open a Buyback cart by clicking the Buyback icon, .
  3. Scan in the book's ISBN.
  4. If prompted, select any applicable included items (such as CD, access codes, etc.).
  5. Scan any additional books.
  6. Press  to complete the cart. This completes the transaction. 
  7. Give cash to customer. 
  8. Select emailed or printed receipt, or both. 
  9. If you have a label printer connected, a label will now print. 

Basic Buyback Process (Store Credit Tender)

  1. If you wish to pay the customer with Store Credit instead of cash follow steps 1 through 5 above.
  1. Click the Buyback with Store Credit box on the Retail Cart screen.
  1. Select a Customer to receive the Store Credit
  1. Continue by clicking DONE to complete the cart.
  1. Select emailed or printed receipt, or both. NOTE:  At this time the Store Credit balance does not print on the receipt so you may wish to show the customer the screen display to confirm that the balance was added to their Store Credit account. The amount of this transaction does show on the Buyback receipt.

Self-Sorting Buyback Cart

Buyback is a crazy time of year, where you’re trying to sort inventory for returns, source inventory for your next term, and spec buy inventory you want to sell online. We've added a feature that will allow the buyback cart to help you.

If you want to turn this feature on, go to the Options menu, click General, and click the Locators tab. Select “Enable wholesaler destination for buyback.” Here’s what will happen:

  • If a book in your buyback cart has an open quota, which we call a Catalog Book, it will be highlighted in blue and a book label will print.
  • If a book in your buyback cart doesn’t have an open quota, and Amazon has the best offer for the book (based on how you configure your Buyback Price Rules), it will be highlighted in blue and a book label will print. You can sell it online at your leisure.
  • If a book in your buyback cart doesn’t have an open quota, and a wholesaler has the best offer for the book (based on how you configure your Buyback Price Rules), it will be highlighted in yellow and no label will print. If you really want to print a label, you can do it manually; the label will just say “Wholesaler” on it, rather than the course information.

Quota Info

  1. Scan an ISBN or EAN into a buyback cart.
  1. Notice that in the Quota column a fraction appears such as “6/13”. This fraction means that the Quota set for this title is 13 and there are 6 books left to purchase at the Catalog price.
  2. Right-click on the product, then click Quota Info, next to the  icon. 

Quota Info Details:

Inventory: This number reflects how many of this ISBN are in your current inventory.

Outgoing Quantity: This number reflects how many books you have sold during the Selling Dates set for any active terms in the Catalog. If you have any outgoing quantity, it will have reduced the number of available customers.

Outstanding Rentals: This number reflects how many books could be returned to the store as Rental Returns. 

Remaining Quota: This number reflects any adjustments made by the preceding fields. It is your cumulative quota.

Select Offer

  1. Scan an ISBN or EAN into a buyback cart.
  2. Right-click on the product, then click Select Offer, next to the  icon. 
  3. What you see here will depend on how your store's price rules are configured, what wholesale buyback guides you have access to, and whether your store has integrated with Amazon. 
  4. Select the offer you prefer, and click OK. 
  5. A price configured like "#### price" denotes a wholesaler buyback guide. To see what wholesaler guides your store has access to:
  • Click the Ship menu at the top of the page. 
  • Click Wholesaler Ship next to the  icon. 
  • The "Begin Wholesaler Ship" window will open, showing you all wholesalers that you have access to. 
  • Once you have the information you need, click OK. 

NOTE:  $0.00 Buyback Price books that are in the cart when you click “DONE” will be added to inventory at a cost of zero and a label will print for them. If you intend to give these back to your customer you need to right click and remove these titles from the cart before you click “DONE.”

 

Buyback Refund

 

If a customer returns and wishes to get their book back and return the cash or store credit and it is before your Buy Return Deadline you can reverse the transaction, return the book and take the cash back from the customer.  Ideally this would be done by scanning the bar code on the Buyback Receipt to bring up the original transaction and complete the refund. This would ensure that the exact buyback price and correct tender is used for the refund. Since at most buybacks the transactions are done without customers, and without printed receipts we will outline the way to complete a Buyback refund without a receipt here:

 

  1. Click on the Search menu, then Transaction Search.
  2. Change the Search type to Title.
  3. Enter the ISBN of the book you want to give back to the customer.
  4. Enter the appropriate date range of the original transaction.
  5. Click Search.
  6. The search results will likely return a list of transactions with that title included.
  7. Choose a transaction and click the refund icon. If you have paid varying prices for this title you want to choose a transaction which was done for the correct price paid to this customer.
  8. When you are in the Buyback Refund screen you can either scan the book’s ISBN or double click on the title to add that book to the cart.
  1. Click  when you have all books being returned to the customer in the cart.
  2. Accept the cash from the customer in exchange for the book(s) you are giving back to them.

 

If the original buyback transaction was done for Store Credit you could initiate the Buyback Return transaction by first searching for the customer and searching for the original buyback transaction within that Customer’s history.

Buyback Reports

There are a number of reports available from Sidewalk PRO to be used during and after Buyback. 

Quota Report 

The Quota Report can be run for all books or only for books with a Quota set on them. This report allows you to see the Quota set, Inventory on hand, Books that have already been sold for the upcoming term, books that have already been bought and the net total of books that you need to meet your original Quota.

  1. Click on Reports.
  2. Click on Inventory Reports.
  3. Click on Quota Reports>View.
  4. Click on the checkbox for “Show Quota Books Only?” if appropriate.
  5. Click OK
  6. After the report runs you can click in the upper right corner on the Export icons to choose a format for your report.

Buy Report

The Buy Report allows you to see Buyback figures at the highest level. This report shows the total of buyback resources spent and the total number of titles bought with only refunds reported separately:

  1. Click on Reports.
  2. Click on Inventory Reports.
  3. Click on Buy>View.
  4. Enter the date range that would include your Buyback time period.
  5. After the report runs you can click in the upper right corner on the Export icons to choose a format for your report.

Textbook Buyback Report Summary 

The Textbook Buyback Report at the summary level allows you to see the total of buyback resources spent and total number of titles bought with Catalog and Not on Catalog information presented separately:

  1. Click on Reports.
  2. Click on Inventory Reports.
  3. Click on Textbook Buyback Report.
  4. Click on Summary, then View.
  5. Enter the date range that would include your Buyback time period.
  6. After the report runs you can click in the upper right corner on the Export icons to choose a format for your report.

Textbook Buyback Report Details

The Textbook Buyback Report at the detail level allows you to see the title detail with transaction information for each Buyback transaction. It is a lengthy report but it does give you the finest granular detail to help research a problem. You can run this report by choosing Details, then View when following the previous direction for the Summary report.

Wholesale Comparison Report

The Wholesale Comparison Report must be run by Sidewalk PRO support staff. This is a powerful report that will provide buy guide comparison pricing for up to two guides and Amazon. If you share your commission rate with us we can have that included in the computations. This report would indicate the best place to sell your buyback books if you are electing NOT to keep them for ongoing store inventory. Your store must have permission to utilize the wholesaler guides that you compare using this report. This report runs overnight so it is not available immediately when you request it. It will be emailed to you the next day.

Surplus Transfer Report

The Surplus Transfer Report is a powerful report used to suggest inventory transfers in multiple location organizations.  Suggestions for transfer are based on inventory, QTP and term start dates of the partner stores.  Access this report by going to the Reports drop-down menu, then clicking Inventory Reports, then Surplus Transfer, View.  Choose an Originating location, (usually your own location) and the Default location (your warehouse or “hub”.) When the report runs each destination store will get its own page with a list of proposed transfers to that store. Columns will show the Surplus quantity and the quantity to transfer to the partner location.  The frequency and order in which this report is run for each location should be planned by corporate management since simultaneous reporting could result in inaccurate inventory transfer suggestions. The first time you plan to run this report please contact PRO support several weeks ahead to allow our developers time to set up your operator for this functionality.

We hope that this guide provides you with the information you need to plan and execute a profitable Buyback in your store!

If you have a question that this document doesn’t answer, feel free to reach out to us. We always love to hear from you.

support@sidewalkpro.com

800.699.4558

 

 

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