If you're new to ordering textbooks online, you might find yourself overwhelmed by the plethora of online textbook ordering options available. Moreover, you might be wary of well-publicized Internet scams or wonder whether you'll truly receive the textbooks you pay for. The following presents benefits to ordering textbooks online, what to expect during the ordering process, and how to protect yourself from common online textbook ordering pitfalls.
Benefits of Ordering Textbooks Online
Ordering textbooks online allows you to save both money and time. In addition, the online environment makes it easier to find textbook titles that you might not find in your local bookstore. You can take advantage of a free textbook price comparison service to search popular, trusted bookstores with a single click. If you use a service such as Direct Textbook, you'll be able to view your search results and compare prices for new and used textbooks on a single page; plus, you can see if any coupons are available to further reduce your price. With a little bit of research, you'll be able to get the lowest textbook prices without ever having to leave your home (or dorm).
To recap, the benefits of ordering textbooks online include:
• You get the best possible price
• You save time
• You can find obscure titles
• You enjoy the convenience of never leaving your house
• Your textbooks will be shipped directly to you
How to Order Textbooks Online
The online textbook ordering process is fairly straightforward, but it's a good idea to know what to expect before you buy. The following outlines the process of ordering textbooks online using the Direct Textbook price comparison service:
1. Browse to Direct Textbook and search for your textbook by title, author, or ISBN number
2. Compare prices and check for coupons on the search results page
3. Click on the textbook you wish to purchase. You'll be taken to the seller's page
4. Follow the seller's purchase process. This typically involves adding the textbook to your cart and checking out. You'll have to provide payment information and a shipping address to purchase your textbooks. Be sure to enter any applicable coupon codes to get the lowest possible price, and print your receipt with your order confirmation number for your records
5. Your textbook will arrive at the address you gave within the time frame specified by the seller (this could range from a few days to a few weeks, depending on which shipping options you select during checkout)
Potential Pitfalls of Ordering Textbooks Online
Ordering your textbooks from trusted sellers is the best way to ensure your satisfaction and security, and it's helpful to be aware of the potential pitfalls. The following lists what can go wrong, how to prevent common pitfalls, and what to do if they occur.
You receive the wrong textbook. This rarely happens, but you can protect yourself in the event it does by familiarizing yourself with the seller's return policy before you order. Most reputable online textbook sellers feature an easy return policy and will even refund your money or send the correct textbook to you before receiving the book back from you. And, of course, make sure you order the correct textbook in the first place – including the correct edition.
Your textbook is missing materials. Some textbooks come bundled with workbooks, DVDs, or passwords to online account access. Make sure you order textbooks that include such bundled materials if they're required by your course instructor.
You receive a textbook in a different condition than you expected. Used textbooks have wear and tear, and their condition as-sold should be mentioned on the seller's page. If you receive a textbook in an unexpected condition – for example, poor condition with torn pages when you expected light wear – you should be able to return it to the seller and/or request a refund.
Your textbook takes too long to ship. Be certain you understand how long it will take to receive your textbook before you order. The last thing you want is to start a new semester still waiting for your textbooks! If it takes longer to receive your textbook than the seller stated, contact the seller immediately to find out when it will arrive. If they've made a mistake, request free overnight shipping.
You must provide financial information. All online payments require a funding source, whether it's your credit card, debit card, PayPal, or other source. Some sellers also accept payment plan services such as Bill Me Later. Protect your financial information by only ordering from trusted textbook sellers (vetted by Direct Textbook) and by checking the fraud and identity theft protection services offered by your payment source. Many major credit card providers, for example, offer free zero liability protection in the event your credit card or identity is stolen.
You are scammed. No reputable textbook seller will scam you, but if you purchase textbooks from unknown parties or directly from private sellers via sites such as Craigslist, it's possible to be scammed by unscrupulous companies and individuals. The best policy is to only purchase textbooks, new or used, from reputable sellers; and, as previously mentioned, understand what level of fraud and identity theft protection covers your payment source.
If You're Not Sure, Ask
If you have a question regarding a textbook or a seller's policies, just ask. Reputable sellers make it easy to contact them, and you can gauge their level of attentiveness by how quickly they respond and how relevant their response is.
Ordering your textbooks online is a convenient way to save time and money while granting you access to a vast library of new and used textbooks for sale. Do your research, compare textbook prices, and avoid common pitfalls to get the textbooks you need at the lowest prices.