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When searching for textbooks online, TopTenREVIEWS Gold Award winner Amazon.com should be one of the first places to visit. Amazon.com is America’s largest online retailer, offering a wide variety of products, ranging from electronics to furniture, from food to college textbooks. Amazon offers many products, trusted service, and an excellent seller marketplace for buying and selling textbooks online.

Standout Features

  • Amazon iPhone app
  • Amazon Blackberry app
  • Wide variety of new and used textbooks
  • Excellent seller marketplace
  • Amazon “A-to-Z Guarantee”
  • Trusted, safe, secure website
  • Sale items
  • Multiple shipping options (including international)
  • FREE Super Saver Shipping
  • Amazon Prime
  • Local Express Delivery
  • Amazon Rewards VISA Card
  • Variety of other products offered
  • Customer reviews and ratings 
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Features and Product Selection
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9.9
9.6
8.9
8.5
7
8.3
9.1
6.3
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6

Amazon has one of the largest selections of products around. Thus, Amazon.com should be a sure-fire hit for those looking for textbooks. Upon browsing Amazon’s textbook store, you’ll come across 26 categories of textbook topics. You’ll see subjects such as accounting and biology, and aids such as study guides and test preparation materials.

Any student should find the book they need in the condition that fits their budget. Amazon.com sells many new textbooks directly, most of which can be shipped for free with Amazon’s Super Saver Shipping. However, Amazon additionally provides a marketplace for sellers to offer their books to potential buyers. In this marketplace, you’ll find both new and used textbooks varying in condition and price. The Amazon.com marketplace is a great resource for budget-minded students to buy and sell their textbooks online.

Website
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9
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9
8
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7.3

Amazon’s website is easy on the eyes and provides an interface that makes searching for textbooks online a breeze. The most general way to find the textbook you’re looking for involves performing a search on the Amazon.com homepage. For more direct and precise search results, customers can visit Amazon’s main textbooks webpage and search for textbooks by title, author, and ISBN. Users can also browse for textbooks by subject via categorical listings on the left side of the textbooks webpage.

When you click on a certain textbook, you will see a picture of the book’s cover and a list of its details. Further down the page, you may find things such as editorial reviews, links to more information about the author, similar textbook suggestions, and combined-product deals to save you money.

In addition to overviews of the textbooks, Amazon includes helpful user reviews at the bottom of each product page. Users can login to Amazon, rate products (out of 5 stars) and write reviews for other potential buyers to see.

Ordering textbooks online from Amazon.com is quick and easy. Once you create an account and find the textbook you are looking for, add it to your cart, review your order, and complete the transaction. Amazon accepts all major credit cards, direct bank account transfers, Amazon.com gift certificates, and reward vouchers.

Not only is Amazon a great place to buy textbooks online, but it is a great place to sell them, as well. All a seller has to do is enter a book’s ISBN, state its condition, enter some notes, and set a price. Because numerous editions of textbooks can be available, the ISBN entry system makes it easy for both buyers and sellers to identify textbooks and avoid any confusion.

Shipping
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9
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Amazon.com provides flexible shipping service to ensure that you get your college textbooks when you need them. Here is an overview of Amazon.com’s prices and speeds for shipments of textbooks within the United States:

Standard 3-5 day:

• $3.00 per order, $0.99 per textbook

Two-day shipping:

• $9.99 per order, $1.99 per textbook
• Add $10 for delivery to AK, HI, PR
• No P.O. boxes, APO, FPO or DPO

Overnight shipping:

• $12.99 per order, $0.99 per textbook
• Add $15 for delivery to AK, HI, PR
• Add $3 for Saturday delivery
• No P.O. boxes, APO, FPO or DPO

Amazon offers several other shipping services. Orders of qualifying textbooks and other products that totaling $25 are offered to be shipped free of charge with Amazon’s “FREE Super Saver Shipping” service. Items delivered using this free service typically take 5-9 business days to arrive.

If you sign up for the Amazon Prime membership program, you’ll pay $79 per year to get free two-day shipping on your textbooks and other items. You’ll also gain the ability to upgrade to overnight shipping for textbooks for just $3.99, and you’ll be offered free standard shipping to P.O. boxes in the continental United States and APO, FPO, and DPO addresses with U.S. zip codes.

Select items are offered with the option of “Local Express Delivery”, where your textbooks will be delivered on the same day as your order. It costs $14.49 per shipment and $3.99 per textbook, and is only available for select products delivered to Seattle, New York City, Philadelphia, Boston, Washington D.C., Baltimore and Las Vegas.

International shipping is available from Amazon.com, so if you need to buy textbooks online and have them shipped to you while studying abroad, Amazon should have you covered. Standard, expedited, and priority courier shipping services are offered around the globe. The prices for these services vary from $3.99 for standard delivery to upwards of $39.99 for priority courier delivery, depending on the location.

Amazon.com also offers standard shipping rate for textbooks and other items sold via the Amazon marketplace. The following list details the shipping rates per textbook from the Amazon marketplace:

• Domestic Standard (4-14 business days): $6.99
• Domestic Expedited (2-6 business days): $6.99
• International Standard (3-6 weeks): $12.49

Buyers of textbooks online should take note: marketplace shipping times are not guaranteed and vary by seller. It’s always wise to read the details section of a certain textbook and/or contact the seller to learn about shipping times and options.

Customer Service
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7
6
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9
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Amazon.com provides excellent customer service. Amazon.com has an informative and easy-to-navigate help section that covers many frequently asked questions. Customer support is easy to access by phone and e-mail. Customers can choose to e-mail Amazon, call an automated service, or request to have a live Amazon representative call them.

To stay informed about the status of your orders, you can go to the “My Account” section of the website. Here, you’ll see an overview of each of your orders, where you can see their statuses and track their shipments directly. In addition to tracking your order via the “My Account” section, you can visit Amazon’s customer support area to receive updates on your order’s status by phone or e-mail.

Amazon also features a rewards program. If you sign up for the Amazon Rewards VISA card, you’ll earn points every time you use it to buy textbooks and products. You will gain three points for eligible purchases on Amazon.com and one point for purchases elsewhere. For every 2500 points accumulated, you will receive a $25 Amazon gift certificate. Using the Amazon VISA card to buy your textbooks online can save you even more money in the future.

If you need to buy or sell textbooks online but are away from your computer, Amazon provides free iPhone and Blackberry mobile applications that allow you to do your textbook shopping on-the-go.

Return Policy
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5.3
7

Buyers should feel confident buying their textbooks online from Amazon.com, as they are covered by Amazon’s “A to Z Guarantee”. This guarantee covers all purchases made from Amazon.com and its seller marketplace. If you do not receive the textbook or if the textbook you do receive is not as described, you’ll be able to get an exchange or refund.

Items sold directly from Amazon.com are eligible for return or exchange for 30 days. For purchases made within the seller marketplace, buyers have 14 days to contact sellers about a return, and the item must be postmarked within 30 days of shipment. Amazon.com and marketplace sellers can issue partial refunds for certain textbooks and other products.

Amazon.com Summary:
9.5/10

If you’re looking for somewhere to buy and sell textbooks online, there really isn’t a better place to begin your search than Amazon.com. Via its own inventory and the vast inventories of thousands of Amazon marketplace sellers, Amazon.com offers an exhaustive assortment of new and used textbooks and other items. The website is easy to navigate, the selection of products is enormous, and the customer service is helpful and rewarding. Using Amazon.com, you are likely to find the textbooks online you are looking for and save money while doing it. Be sure to check out our other great textbooks online sites.

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Amazon.com

Top Ten Reviews no longer updates this category and keeps it here for archiving purposes only. It was last updated in March 2012.
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