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What is an ISBN

Most books have a unique, special ID called an ISBN. In this guide, we'll explore what you can do with an ISBN and answer the common question: "How do you find the ISBN for a book?"


How Do You Find the ISBN for a Book?

Whether it's printed on the back cover, title page, or copyright page, locating the ISBN shows you the title, edition of the book, and format (softback or hardback).

  • Check the Back Cover: The ISBN is often printed on the back cover of the book, usually near the bottom. Look for a barcode accompanied by a series of numbers.
  • Look on the Title Page: Open the book to the title page, typically found near the beginning, and you may find the ISBN printed there along with other publication information.
  • Examine the Copyright Page: Flip through the book to the copyright page, usually located near the title page or at the back of the book. The ISBN is often listed here along with other bibliographic details.

There you go, answering ‘How do you find the ISBN for a book?’ is relatively simple, especially if you have the physical copy.

How Do You Find the ISBN for a Book Online?

The internet is a fantastic tool for finding answers. Finding the ISBN for a book online is simple. Here are some easy ways to locate it:

  • Browse Online Retailers: Check out popular online retailers like Amazon, Waterstones, or Google Books. The ISBN is usually listed in the book's product details..
  • Explore Library Catalogues: Library catalogues often include the ISBN in their records. Search for the book in your local library's online catalogue or use a national library database to locate the ISBN.
  • Scan the Barcode: If you have a smartphone, use our barcode scanning app to scan the barcode on the back of the book. Our app will quickly retrieve the ISBN and other details for you

What Can You Use an ISBN Number For?

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ISBNs help publishers, retailers, and libraries keep tabs on their books. They make ordering and shipping a breeze and are essential for organising books in libraries. But that's not all - ISBNs also pop up in promotional materials and online listings, helping with book marketing and discovery for eager readers.

Once you have the ISBN, you can easily sell your books to make quick cash. Simply enter the ISBN to get an instant quote, ship it for FREE, and receive payment quickly. It's a simple way to turn your books into cash while decluttering your shelves or making room for new reads.


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What About Books Without ISBNs? 

No ISBN? No problem! If your book is from before 1967, it might not have an ISBN at all. Simply email us the title, author, publisher, and publishing date to , and our Antiquarian team will provide you with a price where possible.

And if you have a newer book but still can’t seem to locate the number, just email us the same details and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can!

I can't find an answer to my question above?

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