Money Saving Tips

Why Buying Books Online is the Best Idea

Why Buying Books Online Is the Best Idea
Written by Oana Schneider

With the emergence of tablet computers, e-books and e-readers, are there still people who read actual books? For bookworms and bibliophiles, nothing beats the experience of walking into a bookstore and holding an actual book in the hand. The smell of an old book or the crisp pages of a new book are part of the reading experience. It’s time you go buying books online!

But with the popularity of e-readers, is there a way for the two to co-exist? Or are we seeing the end stages of publishing and reading actual books? Experts agree that readers retain more information when reading from actual books than from e-readers. There’s just something about the distraction brought about by the presence of a browser in an e-reader which makes it more difficult for users to concentrate on finishing the actual book.

However, e-readers can carry a virtual library with thousands and thousands of titles, making it more convenient for users to access. Perhaps there’s no reason why actual books and e-books should not co-exist harmoniously. From a practical standpoint, however, there are many reasons why you should purchase books online rather than from a physical store – be it an e-book or an actual book. Buying books online will cost you less than you’d expect!

The Rise of Digital Reading Media

To give you an idea about the numbers involved, let us take a look at a few statistics from Statista.com:

  • In November 2012, 89% of readers stated that they had read at least one printed book.
  • As of December 2011, 32% of survey respondents said that they read 6-10 books in the past 12 months. 26% read 11-50 books, 15% read 1-5 books and 5% read more than 50 books.
  • As of December 2011, 64% of owners of e-reading devices purchased their own books; 15% borrowed titles from someone; 11% borrowed from the library; and 10% got their books from other sources.
  • As of December 2011, 46% of readers who do not own e-reading devices purchased their own books; 25% borrowed titles from someone; 15% borrowed from the library; and 15% got their books from other sources.
  • As of December 2011, 59% of tablet owners purchased their book titles while 47% of non-tablet owners purchased their own books. Others borrowed from someone else or from the library, and there are other resources as well.
  • Here is a list of the number of books that people typically read in an average year for 2014:
    16% did not own any books.
    17% owned 1-2 books.
    18% owned 3-5 books.
    13% owned 6-10 books.
    15% owned 11-20 books.
    21% owned 21 or more books.   

Reasons for Buying Books Online

Buying books online

Buy A Book With Just A Click!

Whether you’re an avid reader who is into fiction or a college student who needs a number of textbooks, there are plenty of reasons why you should purchase what you need online rather than from a physical store. Take a look at the following list before buying books online:

Online bookstores have a huge selection of titles to choose from.

The number one reason why you should buy books form online stores is the huge selection of titles that you can choose from. Even the biggest bookstores in your neighborhood can only hold so many titles because physical books take up plenty of space. This means that if you are looking for a specific title or edition, there’s a big possibility that it is not available in your local bookstore.

When you go online, you can simply search for the title, author or edition of the book that you need and you can see which stores can deliver a copy straight to your doorstep. That is, if you need a physical copy of the book. It’s even easier to download e-books online because after paying for your purchase, you can easily access it from your browser or e-book reader. When buying books online, make sure you compare as many offers as possible and pick the right one. 

You can save money when buying books online.

Almost anything purchased from online stores are a lot cheaper than what you can buy from brick-and-mortar stores. Why? Because the owners of online stores do not have a physical shop to maintain. Let’s say that a small bookshop is operating in your area. The owner has to pay for renting the office space, maintaining the store, stocking it up with books, hiring the sales staff, etc. All these overhead expenses will be passed on to the prices of the individual books that they sell to make a decent profit.

When you buy books or other items from online stores, they are typically shipped from a warehouse or even the publisher, straight to your doorstep. Since a lot of the third party and store-related expenses are eliminated, you can purchase the individual titles at a very cheap price. The savings from not having to maintain a brick-and-mortar store can be passed onto you, the buyer, in the form of discounted rates. Everyone loves buying books online, right?

You can save space when buying e-books online.

For avid book readers, they claim that part of the reading experience is holding the weight of the book in your hands and physically flipping through its pages. The downside of owning real books, however, is that they do take up a lot of space. Even if you only have paperback books and not the hardbound titles, you will still need a lot of space to store them. This results to clutter, something which is eliminated when you only have e-books. No matter how many titles you store on your e-book reader, as long as it has sufficient memory, you can easily access the books that you want without having to deal with clutter.

You can hoard thousands of titles without having to spend a fortune.

As mentioned earlier, you can easily purchase hundreds or even thousands of books on your e-reader without having to spend a fortune. There are websites where you can download classic books and other titles for free. So all you need to read the book is the extra space on the memory of your e-reader. If you are paying for the titles, you’ll be glad to know that the rates are way lower than what you would pay for a hardbound or a paperback copy. Buying books online is not just cheaper, but also a lot more fun!

You can buy textbooks at almost 90% off the regular price.

If you’re a college student who is looking for textbooks, you can visit websites like ValoreBooks.com. The site allows you to rent textbooks, buy textbooks or even sell your old textbooks. Since college books are simply reference materials for when you are studying, you would be using the titles for a specific amount of time. Afterwards, you can easily earn additional income by selling the titles that you have to other students, or through sites like ValoreBooks.

If you need a physical copy of the book, you can buy them from this site as well as other bookselling websites for 50% to 90% off. There’s actually no need for you to splurge on brand new books because even the newer editions have pretty much the same content. Students do have a limited budget so it is more practical to buy the reference books that they need from websites, where they can be downloaded for free or for a minimal fee. 

There are plenty of websites where you can read books online, for free.

Finally, there are numerous websites where you can read books online – without having to pay a single cent for the privilege. What’s good about visiting these websites is that you don’t even need a special e-reading device like a Kindle. Even a regular iPad, tablet or laptop computer will do because the books can be read using a browser like Google Chrome, Safari, Firefox or Internet Explorer. You can also use your mobile phone to read the titles from these sites which have books that you can read for free:

Buying books online

Save Money On Books By Buying Them Online!

Bookish

This site has a gorgeous reading interface, although you need to set up an account in order to start using the service. The site serves as your own cloud bookshelf, and public domain titles can be browsed using the dashboard of Bookish.

Blurb

Blurb is a haven for self-publishing where online users can see book previews or entire content. The authors earn once print versions are ordered from the site.

Google Books

Search giant Google came up with this project where they scanned and turned books into viewable files. Not all titles can be fully previewed, but you can narrow your search into ones which can be read in full. Buying books online can be such a wonderful experience!

Internet Archive

Founded in 1996, this is a site where you can access more than six million e-books and other text files.

Project Gutenberg

Known as the mother of all e-book sites, Project Gutenberg started in 1971. There are 45,000 public books in the domain right now and with such a huge selection of titles to choose from, you might find yourself spending a lot of time at this site.

Smashwords

A huge site where independent authors and publishers release their work, there are more than 100,000 authors at the site.

Scribd

Fondly called the YouTube for documents, you can read books, comics, brochures and presentations from Scribds.

Wattpad

This is a Canada-based website which has millions of readers spending more than 2 billion minutes per month. Wattpad support more than 20 languages and you can get book recommendations from other users.

Indeed, there are plenty of reasons why buying books online is the best idea you’ve ever had. Thanks to the advancement of technology, you don’t have to break your back carrying tomes of books just to read the information written in the individual pages. Through e-books, e-readers and websites which publish public domain books, you can have a huge array of book titles to read through and enjoy. Check out our blog for other pieces of advice before buying books online! 

 

About the author

Oana Schneider

Oana Schneider is a published author located in Chicago, Illinois, who currently works for DontPayFull.com as a communication specialist and blog editor. She writes about lifestyle, family budget, has a degree in Communications and advocates for women’s rights. Her future plans include getting a Labrador and losing a few pounds.

6 Comments

  • Saving money is the best incentive to buying books online. That and all the free space that you’re going to save. I already have two bookcases crammed full of books that I’ve had since college. I imagine my office would be a little less cramped if they were removed.

  • I love buying books online, although I do know that there are a lot of people who don’t really agree with me. One of the things that I think about is the fact that so much paper is saved, and it is obviously much, much cheaper to deliver an e-book to somebody than it is a physical copy. I love my eReader, and will more often than not buy books on there rather than paperbacks now. However, one thing that I really do love is that you can get so many books on there for free. Doing that means that you’re supporting lesser-known authors whilst still being able to find something that is great that you can enjoy. So if you’ve not tried it before, you should definitely think about it now.

  • I love getting books online, and I love having electronic books. I really wish I were someone with a huge, sprawling library, but I move around way too often to lug books around. The best part of Kindle is just checking out the free books or getting chapter previews, then being able to pick up something for 99 cents that you can have instantly and take anywhere.

  • I still prefer to have an actual book in my hands to read. I just can’t seem to get on the e-book bandwagon. I have purchased free and cheap e-books to give it on a try on my tablet which is great. I am all for free reads. My favorite way to buy books is still at thrift stores. I will take someones second hand books any day over paying full price.

  • I prefer to get online books too. It’s true that the additional features can sometimes become a distraction instead of help. But e-readers like the Kindle seems to have added some usable features which can actually help us on reading books.
    Agree much that it’s great benefit to be able to get lots of free e-books, and have many books stored in a single lightweight device. I also like highlighting and taking notes on the Kindle just with my fingers, instead of having a pen with me. The instant dictionary is handy too, whereas, you will need to look for a dictionary while reading a physical book everytime you hit a word which is not currently in your vocabulary.

  • I really like your point about how buying an ebook will cost less than a traditional hardbound or paperback copy. You also make a great point about how you’ll just need to have the memory on your e-reader to enjoy lots of books. My husband and I love to read and travel a lot. Buying ebooks might be a great way to help pass the time while we travel and have some down time.

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