Alibris — Getting Started

Document created by neilt Employee on May 16, 2017Last modified by neilt Employee on May 16, 2017
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This guide walks you through the steps required to launch on Alibris, and provides you with links for further reading. The following sections are included:


  • Things to consider — Details about the market you should review first.
  • Marketplace setup — Requirements you’ll need to meet before opening an Alibris account.
  • Monsoon Marketplace setup — Settings you’ll need to adjust in Monsoon Marketplace before and after enabling Alibris.
  • Enable the marketplace — Steps to follow when you’re ready to turn on the market in Monsoon Marketplace.
  • Next steps — Tips about Alibris and additional helpful information.


Things to consider


On Alibris, you can list items from the following categories: Books, DVDs, Music, VHS, and Video Games. Non-book items must have a Product ID (UPC or EAN) in order to list on Alibris.

Prohibited Content

The Alibris policies on listing content rules specify words and phrases that can’t be included as part of your listings. If you include these words or phrases, your listings will be placed on administrative hold by the Alibris system, and will require a delist/relist to synchronize again.

When you evaluate your listings for prohibited content, don’t forget to check your notes, including classification notes if you use them.

Sales tax

Alibris will collect and remit sales tax for orders placed in California and Nevada, and for “Ship to Alibris” orders. All other sales tax calculation, collection, and reporting is up to you.

Monsoon Marketplace does not support any sales tax activity for the Alibris marketplace at this time.


If you would like to include images with your listings on Alibris, you can add them directly on the market. Monsoon Marketplace does not send images to Alibris at this time.


  • Consider what percentage of the Amazon Base Price you want to use to determine your Alibris price. Keep in mind that Amazon requires price parity, which means that you aren’t supposed to sell below your Amazon price on other marketplaces.
  • Do you need to add Alibris to (or exclude it from) any inventory pricing groups?
  • Do you want to use a price floor modifier for this marketplace?


Monsoon Marketplace supports selling FBA items on Alibris, with special requirements. For more information, refer to the Monsoon Marketplace Help article Multi-Channel Fulfillment for Alibris.


You will configure and maintain shipping directly on the Alibris website. Alibris has specific requirements in terms of expedited shipping and tracking, so you’ll want to be familiar with their policies.

Read more in the Alibris Shipping Rules article in Monsoon Marketplace Help. Seller Program

If you are selling on Amazon already, make sure you don’t enable the Seller Program. Enabling that feature when you are already selling on Amazon directly will duplicate your inventory, which can cause an account violation in addition to high cancellation rates.

Alibris Pricing Service

If you are already selling on Alibris prior to using Monsoon Marketplace, you may have opted-in to the Alibris Pricing Service. Monsoon Marketplace does not integrate with this Alibris program. If you remain opted-in after enabling Monsoon Marketplace, your pricing will be adversely affected. To disable the Alibris Pricing Service, contact Alibris Seller Support and ask them to remove that option.

Communication with the marketplace

Alibris uses the FTP communication method, rather than a direct API (used by markets such as Amazon or eBay.) You must make sure that your antivirus software and any other firewalls or security programs are set up to allow communication with Alibris. You can read the specific requirements in the Alibris section of the Monsoon Marketplace Help article Firewall exceptions and outbound connections.

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Marketplace setup

If you are new to Alibris

  1. First set up a Seller’s Account to receive your Seller Credentials (UserID and Password).
    •  Verify that your Listing Upload Format is set up correctly in your account preferences. Standard-date upload and Product/package condition should be selected.
    •  Configure your shipping directly on the marketplace.
  2. Next you must obtain FTP credentials from Alibris, and ask them to correctly configure your orders so that you receive automatic order feeds. For detailed instructions, refer to the Monsoon Marketplace Help article Setting up Alibris.

If you already sell on Alibris

  • If you already sell on Alibris, in addition to the steps above, you will also need to remove your listings before you enable the market. For details, refer to the Monsoon Marketplace Help article Setting up Alibris.

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Monsoon Marketplace setup

  • Adjust your item notes as necessary, to avoid prohibited content.
  • Determine what items you want to list on Alibris using your listing rules.
  • Decide how you will configure pricing for Alibris: determine the percentage of base price, whether Alibris should be added to or excluded from any inventory pricing groups, and whether you want to use the price floor modifier.

Enable the marketplace

  1. On the Settings tab, click Alibris, then click Enable Market.
  2. Type your Seller Account information and FTP credentials in the appropriate fields.
  3. Set up your listing rules in the Sell these items section.
  4. Set up your Market Note and Category/Condition Notes, if applicable.
  5. Enter the percentage of Amazon base price you’d like to price at on Alibris.
  6. Click OK.

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Next steps

Packing slips

To comply with marketplace requirements, Alibris packing slips cannot be customized.

Order processing

Alibris gives you 48 hours to mark an order as shipped before it is automatically cancelled on the marketplace. Therefore, Monsoon Marketplace uses a unique workflow for Alibris orders, to ensure you have enough time to process them.

  • After an order is placed on Alibris, it comes into Monsoon Marketplace and is automatically marked as shipped. Then, a second shipment confirmation is sent to your customer, along with any tracking information, when you actually do ship the order.
  • If the order is imported and the item is not available, the order will automatically be cancelled and should not be filled. The order will be flagged as a Problem Order and may be “shipped” in Monsoon Marketplace as a cancellation. You will not need to refund Problem Orders, since they have already been refunded by Alibris.
  • The only time you may need to cancel an order from Alibris is if the item is available in the Monsoon Marketplace database, but is not found or damaged when your pickers look on the shelf. If you must cancel this kind of order, you will need to sign in to your Seller account on Alibris to process a refund manually.
  • You can read more in the Monsoon Marketplace Help article Alibris order types and packing slips.

Via Alibris orders

There are two different kinds of orders on Alibris – the typical kind that you ship yourself, and also orders that are shipped to the Alibris distribution center. You can read more about these special orders in the post Textbooks sales and Via Alibris orders and in the Monsoon Marketplace Help article Alibris order types and packing slips.

Additional resources

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