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Old 07-29-2013, 08:54 AM   #11
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Re: Why do companies use polymailers for damageable items?

Originally Posted by BinahYeteirah View Post
My experience is that the book corners get smashed. I frequently buy used and new books from various sources, such as Amazon sellers, eBay, and private individuals. Virtually every book mailed in an unpadded polymailer has sustained some kind of damage. Even those books mailed in padded mailers often have smashed corners. It's especially annoying when I specifically ask the seller to mail the books in a box, they don't, and I get a trashed book that was supposedly in "like new" condition when it left the seller.

I think sellers do it for a number of reasons. One reason is that shipping damage occurring to a used book is less noticeable. If a seller deals mostly in used books, most buyers won't notice or care enough to complain about minor damage to a book in used condition. Another reason is that many sellers of used books on the Internet deal with high volume and would rather refund for the occasional trashed book than switch to packing everything in more expensive padded mailers and boxes.

I sell our old books on Amazon, too, and I always use cardboard pieces inside a mailer or a sturdy box to prevent damage to the books. I only sell a few items from time to time, so I can use recycled boxes and take my time with packaging. I understand why bigger sellers don't, but it's still annoying to get a damaged book that was supposedly perfect when it was sent.
I used to sell my old college textbooks on There you list what you have and how much you want to sell it for, but they determine the shipping price (I think they default at $2.99 for most books and movies). The problem is, when you pay $2.99 for shipping, the seller doesn't get $2.99. decides how much the book weighs and bases the shipping payment to the seller on that. They don't account for boxes and padding, and it is never the full shipping amount. They may pay me $2.04 to mail a book, and then it ende up costing me $2.63 in a polymailer. So most sellers there don't splurge on boxes when they are already paying the extra shipping OOP.


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