January 25, 2022

Research Article: “Amazon.com vs. EBSCO’s GOBI Library Solutions: Evaluating New and Used Book Vendors While Building a Diverse Collection”

The following article appears in the February 2019 (36:1) issue of Technical Services Quarterly.

We’re sharing an open access version of the article. The DOI of the published version is 10.1080/07317131.2018.1532057.


Amazon.com vs. EBSCO’s GOBI Library Solutions: Evaluating New and Used Book Vendors While Building a Diverse Collection


Russell Michalak
Goldey-Beacom College

Monica Rysavy
Goldey-Beacom College

Trevor A Dawes
University of Delaware


via Washington University Open Scholarship


This article will share a small college’s comparison of the benefits and challenges that occurred when ordering a curated list of new and used print books from EBSCO’s GOBI Library Solutions, a traditional book jobber, instead of Amazon.com, a book retailer. The researchers analyzed the acquisition process, final purchase cost, and reconciliation workflow between the two vendors. Results from this study revealed a 3.1% final cost difference between the two vendors. Additionally, this case study addressed the workflow undertaken to build a curated list of new and used LGBTQ and Title IX print books. This research contributed to the literature as scholarship that compared titles in academic libraries between one subject area, gender studies, in combination with an assessment of the collection development, acquisition, and ordering software tools provided to academic libraries from a traditional book jobber and a book retailer was scant.

Direct to Full Text Article
28 pages; PDF.

On a related note…

Ithaka S+R Releases “Library Acquisition Patterns” Report (January 29, 2019)

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.