Today we launched simple integration with Shaman Drum Bookshop of Ann Arbor, MI. Basically, users can put themselves down as customers and get availability and pricing information on work pages (see right). There’s are no strings or costs to the program; we’re just trying to give give people a better service.
To integrate you need to have an inventory system that can write a file to the web. To make it work, we need a simple XML feed. For performance reasons we can’t be querying an API book-by-book.
The format of the feed is very simple. Here’s an example:
<isbnlist><isbn count="1" price="29.95">3598710364</isbn><isbn count="2" price="19.95">351911304x</isbn><isbn count="1" price="69.50">3519112892</isbn><isbn count="4" price="69.50">3519112906</isbn><isbn count="1" price="59.50">3519112884</isbn>...</isbnlist>
We are open to modificatons (eg., if you can post availability, but not prices). In addition to the feed, we’ll need to have URLs to link to the book pages, and a URL for searching. We willl grab the file between midnight and 2am every night.
LibraryThing isn’t going to double your sales—you’ve probably already have the loyalty of the Thingamabrarians—but it’s a nice service to give your customers.
In the near future, I’ll be producing some stats for bookstores, like holdings patterns against work popularity, that might be interesting or useful to them.