You might have seen my post last week on some book gift suggestions for various types of people, well, today I’m going to make sure you also have the best buying experience whilst purchasing those books.
They’re gloriously fun, they’re beautiful, they make for excellent whacking tools, they sometimes even have dragons in them, but most importantly: they’re affordable. I feel like going into a bookstore at Christmas time really is a magical experience, but bookstores can sometimes be frustratingly pricey or lacking in selection for that special book that you want to get that special (or not so special, annoying Kris Kringle?) person. But even if you just want to browse at Christmastime then just going to the store can be fun – for example, look at all these amazing stores in London that I talked about a while back.
Online bookstores are, therefore, a godsend. There is a book for everyone out there, mark my words. You’ve just got to think hard enough and find that golden ticket of a book for someone and bingo! Instant best friends forever and ever because bookish buddies are the best people in the whole world, obviously. I’m also bringing you this post today because you’ll need to start thinking about shipping cut-off dates for online stores.
Popular online stores include things such as Amazon – but I don’t want to talk about Amazon today. I’m an affiliate for three amazing companies, two of which are Australian, so I’m sharing the love and making sure you’re ready to get clickity-clicking because any excuse to buy books, right? So let’s look at these stores.
The Book Depository
This mother of all bookstores. The queen of the bookniverse. The god of bookish delights. The Book Depository is hands down the number one stop for people who don’t get the lovely benefits of stores like Amazon. Amazing prices and free shipping world wide (!!) is an insane deal and I don’t think I’ll ever work out how they do it. The most glorious thing about TBD is their range; you could wish for almost any book EVER and there’ll more than likely have it in. None of this frustrating hunting around physical bookstores.
TBD has sales all the time – they even have a frequently updated Bargain section where books up over 50% discounted (and they’re good books too). It will recommend relevant books to the ones you’re currently purchasing. You can see a range of new releases, popular pre-orders, or gifts ideas. They even give you free bookmarks which are beautiful with every order (plus other discount coupons, too (for wine and food, if you’re wondering)).
The store also offers plenty of options once you create an account with them. My personal favourite feature is their Wishlist. This is how I keep track of all my books and let’s just say I have quite the extensive list. It’s super easy to add a book to your wishlist and they even send you e-mails to let you know when the price drops! If you’re really lucky, they sporadically send out coupons for 5% off any book(s) on your list, too! This Wishlist is also sharable and this is how I handle Christmas – you can create as many different lists as you like so I also polish my main one up and send out the link to family and friends. That way, I won’t know what I’m getting exactly but I’m guaranteed to get a book I want and don’t own!
TBD has excellent customer service with their quickest response usually coming from their Twitter page. If you need a refund, no problem – if your book is faulty, they’ll send you a new one. It’s easy to keep track of orders and pre-orders and you’ll be told when an book has been dispatched via e-mail!
If you’re really weird, you can also watch other people shop. They have a cool map which shows what book is being bought from what country at that exact moment – just so you can get all excited about the sheer number of other book addicts out there. The Book Depository is well worth the stop because books are easy to find on there for amazing prices and a fabulous shipping deal.
Make sure you get your orders in before the cut-off dates for Christmas shipping, which you can see HERE.
Booktopia is an Australian online bookstore. It’s slowly climbing the ladder and quickly becoming a popular and acclaimed store for all your online bookish needs. Booktopia does not have free shipping like TBD, but they have constant sales and deals on. If there’s not a free shipping deal out whilst you looking – just wait a few days and I betcha something will come up. Even so, shipping is AUD$6.95 at a flat rate within Australia and New Zealand, which isn’t all that bad if you stock up big time all in one go.
Best of all! Students get 10% off from Booktopia and there’s almost always deals on such as there current one of 30% off bestsellers. The store also has a lovely green aesthetic which I greatly appreciate, but perhaps shouldn’t be the sole reason you shop with them.
They let you see bestsellers and trending books, hot pre-orders and all round popular books for various genres. Booktopia offers exclusive deals with signed copies of books and other knick knacks and even better, they sell gift cards! So if you really can’t find a book that you think that person will like, but they a gift card! They range from AUD$20 – AUD$200!
Booktopia also sports a Wishlist. Similar to TBD, you can also share the link to your Wishlist but with more options. Not only can you copy the link to it (which I should mention, does NOT give anyone else access to your account) but you can share it on social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. Get those presents rolling in, I say! It’s very easy to keep track of everything on this website and being Aussie there’s also a contact number you can ring for any enquiries.
There are some wicked deals from Booktopia and this is my go-to website for finding crazy bargains especially when they have free shipping deals. You can find amazing books for less than AUD$2.00 – in fact, this was the website where I bought Maggie Stiefvater’s Wolves of Mercy Hall boxed set in hardback for AUD$20.00 – it’s definitely worth keeping an eye out for these deals!
But if you get sidetracked and overwhelmed by their great choice of books then fear not. You can also purchase games, puzzles, DVDs, audio books, stationary, and magazines from their website too. Get all your Christmas shopping done in one place without having to get out of bed? Methinks the answer is yes.
Make sure you get your orders in before the cut-off dates for Christmas shipping which are:
Non-stocked titles: 30th November
New Zealand: 12th December
WA, NT, SA, & Non-metro areas: 14th December
QLD, NSW, ACT, Vic, Tas Metro areas: 16th December
Angus & Robertson Bookworld
This store is the combination of two bookstores. Earlier this year, Bookworld and Angus & Robertson joined forces and their combined efforts and really brought the online shop to the fore. I’ve always been particularly fond of this store because I really love the way it looks – and that’s important for a store that’s solely online! It’s easy to navigate and they have special deals for “citizens” (those who make an account). Standard shipping is AUD$7.95 but if you purchase more than AUD$60.00, then it’s free shipping for you my dear.
If you do sign up, then you’re privileged to excuse sales and shipping offers and they tailor recommendations to you. They have a lovely range of books as well and match Booktopia on their scope of things for sale. So if you can’t find that free shipping deal over on Booktopia then hop along to ARBW and stock up on your books, DVDs, games, music, stationary and more and away you go.
There is a delightful little option on this website for “My Library” wherein you can make lists to your heart’s content, be that a wishlist or anything else your heart desires. It’s very easy to navigate and you can search within your own lists (which is very handy when they get long) to find a particular book you’re seeking. You can also save addresses and credit cards onto the website if you wish to make purchases nice and quick!
I Dare You:
Get all your Christmas shopping done now! Beat the rush – imagine having it all done in November? Ooh, can you feel that relieved feeling?? Everything would just turn up at your doorstep and you only have to life one finger. Go on, choose your poison.
I am an affiliate with these companies so I receive a small commission for each purchase. This is at no extra cost to you but greatly appreciated! A little goes a long way so please, don’t be shy to use my links! Thanks!