Online Book Shopping: The Pros and Cons

Online Book Shopping: The Pros and Cons

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Published by TOP4 Team

The significant increase in the popularity of online book stores over the past decade is due to the comfort and convenience they bring. Browsing book titles will lead you to the best retailers who offer the best deals at amazingly low prices. On the contrary, offline (physical) book stores can take advantage of their nature by hosting events such as book signings which draw huge crowds at any given time. Ultimately, for some readers, reading a book is about the whole experience – the touch and feel of the book make it more pleasurable.

Of the many motivations and enthusiasm to buy online, these are the standouts:

• Online stores are cheap. Because they do not suffer the costs that brick and mortar ventures have to deal with such as rent, they can pass these savings onto the consumer.
• Online shopping is very convenient. Not only do they make physical travel to the actual store unnecessary, but online book stores simplify the process of searching for the books you want via comprehensive search engines.
• Online stores are not limited by space and can, therefore, provide an infinite amount of books to select from.
• Online book stores simplify access. They allow individuals from all over the world to make purchases of the books they desire.
• Online stores allow both authors and consumers the opportunity to view feedback from previous customers. This feedback can be proven essential to readers who might be looking for recommendations to guide them in their purchase.

Despite all the benefits they bring to the table, online book stores are not without faults. By choosing to buy books online, you will encounter the following complications:

• As with most online transactions, you need a lot of trust to use online book stores. Because you can’t see and touch the books you’re buying, you can’t guarantee that what you saw on the website is what will be delivered to you.
• When you buy books online, you won't be receiving any personalised service. This may not be much of a deterrent for most, but some people enjoy having direct access to a store rep for answering questions or for assistance in their browsing efforts.
• By choosing to buy books online, you’re also choosing to accept the risks of fraud. Fraud is a big problem plaguing transactions across the internet. While you can always take measures to protect your finances, there’s no way to completely remove fraud from the equation.
• Though the actual books purchased from an online store may be cheaper, you oftentimes have to deal with high shipping costs.
• Returns are very problematic when you buy books online. The return policies of online stores can make the process either impossible or more costly than you’re willing to accept.

There’s nothing wrong with buying books online, but you should also consider visiting local book stores from time to time.


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