The prices of textbooks at generic student bookstores can be quite high, often costing students hundreds of dollars every semester. Since students don't typically have a lot of extra money, finding cheaper textbooks online is a great way to save some cash. Buying new and used textbooks online is a convenient and economical way to get the books you need. You may also want to look into selling your textbooks online to put even more money in your pocket.
Many factors contribute to a quality textbooks online business. They must offer a good selection, present an accessible website, provide adequate shipping options, exhibit caring customer service and guarantee purchases through a trusted return policy. Here is a further breakdown of the main criteria we adhere to when reviewing textbooks online services.
Features and Product Selection
No textbooks online business can have success without an adequate selection of textbooks and related items. All of the websites we reviewed offer great selections of textbooks. Some offer more vast and varied selections of books than others, and some even stock items such as movies, music, video games and other things. Giant inventories filled with many products can only make a student’s buying experience more fulfilling.
The better structured a website is, the easier it will be for a user to find what he or she is looking for. We consider each website’s look and accessibility to determine how well a user will be able to navigate. Detailed search options, useful help sections and aesthetically pleasing construction all contribute to a pleasant user experience.
There are times when online transactions can be marred by poor shipping policies. Thus, we take the time to go over a company’s shipping speeds and prices. Every service we reviewed ships throughout the United States, some offering many different options. Most, but not all, also offer some form of international shipping.
Every successful company strives to provide excellent customer service. Each textbooks online company we reviewed provides some form of customer service, whether it be through a helpful website, order tracking, e-mail and phone correspondence, mobile applications, or some combination of these methods. Some provide more options and better service than others, but all do an adequate job.
Before you purchase anything online, it is wise to know the return policy of the company from which you are buying. Since almost all purchases of textbooks online involve shipments of products, returns may sometimes involve restocking fees and additional shipping costs. Most companies have specific guidelines that denote when and how refunds are processed. We have taken the time to detail each website’s return policy and offer our decision of whether it is fair and effective.
Each of these aspects is important in providing a worthwhile experience for those looking to buy and sell textbooks online. Having a good selection of products is not good enough if a company’s return policy and customer service are poor, and vice-versa. Be sure to check out our articles related to textbooks as well as our top-rated textbooks online services, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Alibris. At TopTenREVIEWS We Do the Research So You Don’t Have To.™
TopTenREVIEWS no longer updates this category and keeps it here for archiving purposes only. It was last updated in March 2012.
|Amazon.com||Barnes & Noble||Alibris||AbeBooks||Textbooks.com||Biblio.com||Half.com||Bookbyte||ValoreBooks||TextbooksRus|
|Features and Product Selection|
|Free Shipping||Orders Over $25||Orders Over $25||Some Orders $49+||*||Orders $25+||*||*|
|Additional Books||Fee Per Book||Fee Per Book||*||*||*||*|
|Express (2-3 Day)|
|Bill Me Later|
|Returns/Exchanges Accepted||Seller Approval/Error|
|Free Return Shipping|
|Return Window||30 Days||14/30 Days||60 Days||30 Days||30 Days||30 Days||7 Days||14 Days||30 Days||14 Days|
|Restocking Fee||Up to 15%|