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Flipkart online bookstore review

By on May 19, 2009 in Reviews, Tech Takes | 62 comments

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DSC_8047 - Memorial Wall
Creative Commons License photo credit: Anyhoo
I find it strange that I hardly ever talk about books on my blog, given that I read a lot. You’ll find many reviews of movies, albums and whatnot, but hardly any books. Odd, because I own an extensive book collection – I’ve totally lost track of how many books I have. I’ve donated many over the past few years, and I have quite a sizeable collection at some of my relatives’s place rather than at home. Then there are many many e-books that I have. I’ll try to remedy that over the next few months.

World BOok Fair 2006, New Delhi
Creative Commons License photo credit: Hi Pandian
I prefer buying books during the annual Delhi Book Fair or the biennial International Book Fair in Delhi, just because of the sheer variety of books that you can get. I rarely buy books from bookstores, that too if some new book comes out for which an e-book version is not available which I desperately want to read. I have no preferences among bookstores in particular; I don’t hunt around for deals, I just go to whichever bookstore is most convenient for me to go to at the time I feel like buying. Thus, given a choice, I would prefer to buy books online when these I-must-have-this-book urges spring up.

Till now, this has not been possible India. Shady websites being passed off as ‘online bookstores’ have been around but I know for a fact they aren’t reliable. Ordering from them simply wasn’t worth the trouble – it was far more easier to even trek across the whole city to get a book you wanted. The first people you need to avoid are the Snake Oil Merchants Inc trio of Indiatimes Shopping, Rediff Shopping, and Sify Shopping. As far as I know, these guys have no inventory of their own: local dealers sign up with them, the Snake Oil Merchants pretend they have the book, and pass on the order to one of these local dealers. How quickly you got your book and in what condition was decided by Snake Oil Merchants Inc by flipping a patented 10-sided coin they have, 9 sides of which say “Take the money and forget about ‘customer care'”. Friends of mine who were gullible enough to end up, say, pre-ordering a new Harry Potter release repented their decision when orders were left undelivered for weeks on end (the whole point of pre-ordering is defeated!).

Then there’s Indiaplaza and Futurebazaar. I think they got their websites by the same company, because both show similar and irritating errors. Start adding something to your shopping cart at any of these sites – and poof, in an instant your order choices will be lost because ‘we encountered an error’. Suffice to say that after such ‘errors’ I didn’t have the courage to try Russian-rouletting my way to their payment page.

Penguin India Book search

Penguin India could easily use Google Custom Search, but why stop making a mockery of its own customers?

Even more depressing are dedicated bookselling sites and publisher websites. Navigating Penguin India’s website is a terrifying experience requiring nothing less than a black belt in at least three different kinds of martial arts. Please, Penguin, designing is a website doesn’t mean you throw a few GIFs together like Lego blocks. Heck, try searching for books which books – I tried to find some books which I know have been published by Penguin India, and they didn’t turn up. Oh, it didn’t tell me right away of course. You have to try and trick the Penguin India website into thinking that you’re Chuck Norris, and if you fail to do that then it shows the error message above. Once you do succeed in fooling it (I roundhouse-kicked my laptop screen) it tells you that the book you know exists, doesn’t. Other Indian publisher websites aren’t worth talking about so I’ll give them a miss.

Among dedicated bookselling sites based out of India the most prominent ones are First & Second and A1Books. Both claim to India’s ‘largest’ / ‘number 1’ online bookstore, but till now I have been disappointed with their inventory. Many times when I’ve tried to search up books at these two places I came up with zilch results. Many times these guys claim to have books when they are in fact out of stock, but take your order anyway. Prateek was telling me today of how he faced such an issue with First & Second once where they took an order for an out-of-stock book and it took ages to get a refund.

I have been fairly apprehensive about buying books from online stores in India – until now. Lately I have been hearing a lot of word-of-mouth praise for Flipkart.com. So when Amit Varma’s book My Friend Sancho was released recently (review coming up soon!), I decided to give Flipkart a shot.

flipkart-logoMy rating of Flipkart: 8.2 / 10

The first thing that caught my eye about Flipkart was the no-nonsense attitude. There are no tall claims about being the largest / longest / biggest / highest / smelliest anything in India / world. They don’t keep pushing DVDs, flowers, box of chocolates, or any other crap like some other bookstores either. A list of bestsellers, search box – that’s it. Footer is a bit messed up, but it gets the job done. It seems that a lot of users keep asking them for free PDF ebooks…

flipkart-footer

You don’t pay for courier charges if the order value is above Rs 100 – which should be the case 9 times out of 10. Once you select the books you want, you can quickly create an account and proceed to checkout for payment. You have multiple choices for paying – credit card, debit card, Internet bank account, ItzCash card, cheque / demand draft. Credit card payment processing is done by Axis Bank’s payment gateway, which charges the lowest transaction fee out of any credit card processing gateway (I know because I do quite a lot of online transactions). Opting for cheque / DD obviously means you’ll have to snail mail it to them and then wait for your book – this option is mainly kept just for the heck of it on most e-commerce sites though I’m certain hardly anyone would be using it.

By far the most accessible option for everyone would be to use an ATM / debit card or an Internet banking account. These payments are handled by CCAvenue, the processing gateway that every effing startup in India seems to use. CCAvenue charges merchants a lower transaction fee so this is what most startups end up bootstrapping for payment processing. I hope CCAvenue dies a miserable death. Their servers can be unreliable and sometimes reject payments from legitimate cards, or simply time out while processing. To their credit however, CCAvenue never makes a wrong charge and even if the transaction fails due to a timeout error or something else, they send you an email informing you whether the transaction could be carried out or failed. You can then go back to the merchant site and place the order again safe in the knowledge that your card has not been charged.

Flipkart promises to deliver your order within three business days if the order is placed before noon on the day of the order. I placed my order for My Friend Sancho in the late evening yesterday, so I expected it to take at least two days to reach. I was pleasantly surprised when I found it had arrived early today morning! The packaging used is excellent – they shipped in a paperback-size cardboard box. The quality of packaging is good, no chance of the book getting damaged during transit.

Everything with Flipkart is almost-perfect – you can forgive them for the messed up front page navigation because their core strength is solid. What sucks really bad in Flipkart is its search feature. There is no ‘advanced search’ (none that I could find) which would allow you to search by title, author, publisher or ISBN to lookup a book. If you can find out from elsewhere online, ISBN is the fastest way to track down the exact copy and edition of whichever book you want. Right now, Flipkart’s search is simple text-string match. You can’t “enclose search terms in quotes” to search for exactly that phrase. Consequently it might take a long time to hunt down a book if the title or author name has common surnames / common phrases. Once you get a book, then you can easily look up other editions (hardback vs paperback) and compare prices. I also liked the fact that if a book is out of stock then it is clearly listed as such, with the option to set up an email alert to be triggered as soon as the book is available in their inventory again. I suggest that you use Yahoo! Search / Google Search to hunt down the book you want if it’s getting agonizing; restrict results to Flipkart by adding ‘site:flipkart.com’ before your search term in Yahoo! / Google.

I’ve found an online bookseller that I can trust, ships for free, delivers on schedule in proper packaging and even throws in discounts on books. They got it right by sticking to one thing – selling books – and doing that one thing extremely well. Flipkart might just have become my preferred method of buying books.



62 Comments

  1. chica

    May 19, 2009

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    Flipkart is my go to site too for buying books online. Their delivery service is very good.. And the no nonsense factor of the website is a big plus. But the books they carry are mainly bestsellers, a lot of books have been showing up as Out of Stock for more than an year now. If it takes longer than an year to stock it then just remove it from the inventory. But I still check Flipkart before I check anywhere else.

    • Ankur

      May 19, 2009

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      Must be issues with maintaining a large inventory then. If they can get search feature fixed, maybe more people will be able to find and order less popular books, thus making sense for them to keep proper inventory. I’ve noticed that a lot of Penguin India books are running out of stock quickly these days – Penguin doesn’t seem to be ordering reprints that frequently.

      In situations when I don’t find books online, my recourse would be to go a bookstore and get it. Lately, even that has become a frustrating experience. Many bookstores – mostly bookstore chains – are hiring inexperienced people these days who’ve hardly heard of an author if you ask them! If they get their act together, e-tailers such as Flipkart can capitalize on this as database searches – if done correctly – can be far more accurate and faster.

    • Ankur

      May 19, 2009

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      I checked up some books on Pustak, and for every book it gives an estimated delivery time of 4-8 weeks. That is completely unacceptable.

      • Vikas

        October 1, 2009

        Yup Pustak boasts to have a large database of books but prices are really expensive and books take a long long time to deliver compared to other stores out there.

  2. sahil

    May 19, 2009

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    I remember pre-ordering Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix from Indiatimes Shopping … it wasn’t that bad, the book came two days later but the packaging was pretty neat, bubble-wrap all around, and the book was in very good condition …

    Otherwise, I don’t think I’ve ever bought a book online although Flipkart does sound pretty good. Do you know the difference between a book that is ‘Available’ and one ‘In Stock’?

    p.s. Flipkart does say this in its footer: “The biggest online bookshop in India for best prices and shopping for all kinds of rare books, discounted/cheap books, textbooks, novels and general interest books.” although granted it’s in a tiny font and right at the bottom :)

    • Ankur

      May 20, 2009

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      As I mentioned, ordering from Snake Oil Merchants Inc is a hit-and-miss affair. If the partner they forward the request to bothers about quality, then you’re good – but if that is not the case then you’re screwed.

      Does Flipkart use two different terms – ‘Available’ and ‘In stock’? So far I’ve only encountered the latter, and ‘Out of stock’.

      Ah, now I noticed the Flipkart footer. But to their credit, as you said, it’s right and the bottom and in small font. Dare I say it describes them pretty well? :)

      • sahil

        May 20, 2009

        Yeah, I did a random search and they said ‘Available’ and ‘In Stock’ for different books so I’m not sure what they meant. (I *think* I searched for ‘Artemis Fowl’)

      • Ankur

        May 21, 2009

        Got it from their FAQ. ‘In stock’ means its in their own inventory and will be delivered within 3 business days. ‘Available’ means it they’ll take 4-8 business days, this is mostly for imported editions of books – but they guarantee you’ll get the book.

      • sahil

        May 21, 2009

        Oh okay … that’s good enough then :D

      • Ganesh

        June 11, 2009

        On this- No online bookstore keeps ready inventory with em. They get all their books from a supplier once a customer places an order.

      • Vikas

        October 1, 2009

        Hi,

        To add to the above, it’s not entirely true that no online bookstore will keep inventory.

        For very popular titles (going by the past trend), they might do so. Buying in bulk can get them higher discounts and really fast delivery to the customers.

        But it also results in increased operation costs as well as risks of carrying titles, which might not sell. A fine balance.

  3. Ankur

    May 20, 2009

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    LMAO! To give you an idea of how ridiculous Flipkart’s search is, consider this – a search for ‘Douglas Adams’ turns up Unhooking A DD-cup Bra Without Fumbling by some Adam Adams!

    • pete

      June 15, 2009

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      I read Unhooking a DD Cup Bra without Fumbling – and it is very funny and it doesn’t have any Es

  4. Jack

    May 20, 2009

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    As per you mentioned that there are so many online book stores in India which gives good & satisfactory answers to your query about books. I like your article for giving good online book store names. People buy books online not with selective book sellers but where they find their books. I am using online book purchase services from last 2 years & found some good names like Flipkart
    IndiaPlaza
    Indiatimes
    Rediff
    Sify
    Future Bazaar
    Infibeam
    In.com. These all are very reputed online books sellers online.

    • Vikas

      October 1, 2009

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      Indiaplaza formerly Fabmart and then Fabmall used to be at one time a really great site for buying books online. Sadly, that was 10 years ago and then it just went downhill.

      It is now really trying hard to revamp its look and feel. Maybe the folks there have realized the market share that they have been losing. The latter is not a factual statement but if I who used to buy books in dozens there stopped buying altogether, then it does seem to be so.

  5. Shantanu

    May 26, 2009

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    I came across one more site for buying books. See if you like http://www.coralhub.com

    I once ordered 3 books of which 1 was out-of-stock and I got a full refund for that book immediately.

    Appears to be trust-worthy.

    • Ankur

      May 26, 2009

      Post a Reply

      Hmm. But they should’ve mentioned the fact that it was out-of-stock at the time of placing the order than later on.

      • Ganesh

        June 11, 2009

        @Ankur- I am from the books industry , used to work for an ecommerce store and I can understand a reason why they were unable to show a book as out of stock.

        Many a times, you have issues where the supplier gives u a in-stock list and a few days later the book goes outta stock, this could have been a case of the supplier not giving up to date info to the website.

        From my experience, it is probably the reason, cant be certain though

      • Ankur

        June 11, 2009

        But then that’s their fault! Their backend system should be much more robust in inventory tracking so that they don’t mislead customers.

        I do know that most other bookstores order on the fly, but I don’t that’s true for Flipkart. If they could dispatch within hours of getting an order they must have their own stock – maybe for just the popular-selling books.

      • Ganesh

        June 12, 2009

        I know for a fact that they do not dispatch a single book themselves. They send these over to their suppliers and if In stock , they get dispatched.

        I have had issues with Out of stock books which were In stock when ordered from Flipkart, Post order, I was informed they were Out of stock.

      • Vikas

        October 1, 2009

        Ankur, however robust your own system might be, you cannot have the whole supply chain working perfect. The biggest problem with the Indian publishing industry is nobody knows what they have.

        Even the publishers, go to them and you will find out that the catalogs that they send out have wrong ISBNs, wrong prices and no status of the book – whether it is out of print, considering reprint or in-print. Here the international publishers are way ahead. Most of them have embraced ONIX format which gives complete info about a book along with its availability status.

        Go to the next level, distributors – most of them have outdated inventory management systems, if they do have them in the first place!! The books are not indexed on ISBNs but titles, which can be incomplete or with spelling errors. They do not give live inventory feed. At best, you can hope to have a weekly feed of the stock list and that can be like anything above 5 titles, and they can go out-of-stock in the intervening period.

        So there is a lot of information asymmetry in the industry. It is definitely embracing IT but the progress is really slow.

        That having said, the online bookstores can thus be proactive. Inform their users about book status within a day or two and let them decide whether they want to cancel the order or not if the book can not be delivered in the stipulated time + some reasonable margins.

      • Ankur

        October 1, 2009

        What you say about bad inventory management is quite true.

  6. Azygos

    July 27, 2009

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    Indiaplaza offers min 25% discounts, reward points, fabulous offers on pre-orders [Just check the latest dan brown book at 33% off with free Da vinci code DVD] If books are out of stock, u get a refund. No hassles there

    Their inventory is unfortunately no longer what it was two years ago. You wont get Indian editions of Oxford and Orient Blackswan for instance

    Flipkart offers mid range discounts at best. And buying books without any discount is pretty much unacceptable.

      • Vikas

        October 1, 2009

        A few weeks back the only bookstore from where I would have ordered would have been Flipkart, never Indiaplaza. They might give you discounts but what if the book doesnt reach you but some “Manjula” who you have no clue.

        Yup that was the person who signed for my courier and I know of none who lives in the neighborhood leave alone my house.

        But then again I believe Indiaplaza is making some efforts albeit in the wrong direction.

  7. Yogesh Pandit

    August 7, 2009

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    Have you ever checked the kind of things these guys have on their website? Take a look at the tags that they have on pages. I was looking at children’s books and I was shocked to see savita bhabhi keywords on it.

    Here are links from google which will tell you what all they’ve done in the past to make themselves a high traffic site.
    http://www.google.co.in/search?hl=en&q=site:flipkart.com+bhabhi+sex&btnG=Search&meta=&aq=f&oq

    And btw I’ve also shopped from them. There are problems and then the phone only rings.

      • Vikas

        October 1, 2009

        Having such tags,

        and things like “The biggest online bookshop in India for best prices and shopping for all kinds of rare books, discounted/cheap books, textbooks, novels and general interest books.” and “free PDF ebooks” in the footer,

        are IMO more of a SEO tactic. You have all the keywords that will most probably be searched by any person remotely interested in books. While I believe that the latter approach does have its merits (having relevant keywords in the footer), I have to yet see such tags.

        The first search result in the above link had references to sex and tantra, but if you look closely they come from the popular section. So even a children’s book might have it. Another SEO technique because for once I do not have the patience to actually look at such crammed text.

  8. eliza

    September 29, 2009

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    Flipkart sent my book in a thin flimsy “box” and it came bent and crushed. Any gift value was destroyed. I would never purchase from them again.

    • Ankur

      September 29, 2009

      Post a Reply

      That’d be the fault of the courier company I guess. I didn’t receive the books I ordered damaged (and I’ve ordered from them multiple times).

      • Vikas

        October 1, 2009

        The best packaging till now has always been of Indiaplaza, hands down. Flipkart’s, as mentioned by eliza, was damn cheap using a flimsy box. I hated opening the package.

  9. marcel

    October 23, 2009

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    Hi, nice blog you have, I stumbled upon it by a google search for experiences with the online bookstore Flipkart.com. I was just about to place an order and I see they don’t ship outside of India :(
    I need a book and it really was a bargain.

  10. Eshaan

    October 23, 2009

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    Indiaplaza is rubbish. I searched for a book. The gathering storm by robert jordan which will release on 27th october. They had just the hardcover edition in stock and that also was Rs 1500 or something while the same edition on flipkart was Rs 1200 and flipkart also had the Paper Back edition for Rs 424.

    I will use flipkart for sure!

  11. rj

    December 27, 2009

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    That was an interesting article. But I must warn you that it is unwise to judge Flipkart on the basis of 1 good experience. I’ve had terrible experiences with Flipkart, especially when trying to purchase non-best sellers (uncommon books). The site showed that the books were in stock, they took money up front, promised delivery in 2 weeks and then just forgot about the books! It was a huge nuisance talking to their customer-service and it required several calls back and forth before I got my money back. They had some flimsy excuse of the book being in stock at the time of order, but multiple orders for the same book placed simultaneously resulted in non-delivery!!

    The best online experience I’ve had is easily – http://www.thestorez.com – it is a small concern so you get direct service from the proprietor/owner – Mr. Arvind – himself. Because their overheads are low, you get a competitive rate too (more or less the same as flipkart (if not less), inclusive of shipping). I’m yet to come across any website (any product or service) in the world that gives faster and more courteous customer service.

    However, please note that their website is still being upgraded and so there is a chance that you may not find the book you’re looking for through the search filter. In that case, all you have to do is send a mail across to books@thestorez.com and Mr. Arvind gets back to you promptly with availability details, cost, time for delivery. You confirm via email, make an online payment and then forget about the book. It’ll land on your doorstep – perfect condition – within the promised timeframe.

    I’ve made over 100 purchases at thestorez.com till date. I’m yet to be disappointed. It is the place for books if you’re in India. Long may that be!

  12. Reema Sahay

    January 20, 2010

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    I buy mostly from Indiaplaza, Flipkart and a1books. I have found all three very good in terms of delivery and customer service. Once in a while it happens with everyone that a book is not available and still showing ‘in stock’, then they refund. Plus I prefer searching on 2-3 sites for the best deals.

  13. Rajesh Santhal

    February 15, 2010

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    I have used both Indiaplaza.in and Flipkart.com – both offer good selection. Flipkart UI is neater and simpler, the advantage of a single category. Delivery though is inconsistent, payment gateways are always a problem, packaging is poor.

    Indiaplaza – pricing is superb, delivery is inconsistent, UI can improve a lot, packaging is good.

    Difficult to choose – I use both regularly.

    Maybe some VC should merge these two companies, we can have a real amazon in India then by combining good points of both companies.

    • Ankur

      February 15, 2010

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      Infibeam.com is a spittin’ image copy of Amazon, as far as UI goes. Never used them though.

  14. Neeraj Bhai

    March 13, 2010

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    My experience with indiaplaza.in is very contrary to yours. I have been using them for almost a decade now. Never faced a problem. They are my preferred site. Mainly because of a lrge offering they have. Only ideosyncracy I noticed is in their addressbook. It does not let me delete any mailing address that I may have.

    Their delivery times are impeccable. They confirm the order by sms too. When the item ships they sms alongwith a courier company trackign number. Never a missed order or a wrong order. I give them 9.5 on 10

  15. Reva Kapoor

    March 20, 2010

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    Ankur, interesting review of online book stores. But since you are an avid book reader, I was just wondering what you think of the profusion of online book rental companies? The US has had them for a while but seems like every middle sized town in India is now getting a start up. I joined one called Indiareads last month and so far it seems like good going. I heard about them from a friend who registered at the Delhi Book Fair. Apparently they are present all over India.

    But anyway, here’s what I thought is interesting. I pay 325 bucks a month, and I can get 6 books. My friend pays 150 bucks and gets 2 books. I have already read Idea of Justice, Pirate Latitudes, Freefall, Professor and the Madman this month. I think if i bought those books, I would have to shell out much more. And when I wanted to purchase Idea of Justice, I got a neat discount of 22% and doorstep delivery. They are newbies because they don’t have a payment gateway yet, but so far both my friend and me like what we have seen.

    I have bought from flipkart before and my experience was okay. Once I got the book within 3 days but the second time a book which was shown as In Stock, did not arrive for 20 days.I understand that this is how the online book industry works, but I still think that this online book rental is cool, especially for a student like me.

    • Ankur

      March 20, 2010

      Post a Reply

      A book rental service which then allows you to buy a book sounds like a novel system. I’ve heard of a few ‘online’ library services such as these in India, but most of them work on books donated to them and they don’t sell books. What’s their collection like – as in, can you rent any book they have, or just a selected few?

  16. Srinivas

    April 28, 2010

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    Hi there,

    Thank you for the review, the information was very useful. Few years back i purchased a t-shirt from rediff.com and when i received it looked like the one available at subways and roadsides here. It said that the brand is Gap.

    Then i stopped purchasing online since i had to purchase a book i was looking at Goole books and i found Klipkart and i wanted to review their reputation and you review helped me to choose them.

  17. KD

    May 28, 2010

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    My experience with flipkart has been great. Ordered a computer book, got 10% discount and book was shipped in a day and shipper took 6 days to deliver the book from Banglore to Pathankot, Punjab.

    Very satisfied, had so many doubts initially.

  18. Akash

    June 11, 2010

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    I bought 2 Arthur Hailey classics ‘Hotel’ and ‘Airport’ from flipkart.com. No doubt their service was commendable. I was so excited to see a ‘desi’ online book store that i told all my friends about it. Now my next destination would be indiaplaza i guess. We all want massive discounts, dont we?! Can someone suggest good management humour books? I have read a couple of dilbert books although..

  19. Ayesha Sarin

    August 28, 2010

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    I recently came across 2 great services.

    1) isbn.net.in – a super cool price comparison engine which searches and compares prices across all major online bookstores in India. I find it super valuable and I check upon it always now

    2) http://www.flipgraph.com – Wonderful service, ordered with them 3 times now, found them cheapest every time, books delivered in 2 days, nice package, slick notepad etc. for free. They have an interesting exchange concept where you can send your book and get their virtual currency in exchange. Nice part is some really steal deals with them. I ordered 2 used copies, almost as good as new, for a price which was 20 times lesser (than a new copy). Already loving them, l always used to buy from flipkart or infibeam and these guys seem to be already giving them kicks.

  20. Neeraj Bhai

    August 28, 2010

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    Thanks Ayesha for your useful links.

    isbn.net.in does not send its query to indiaplaza.in. Only yesterday I ordered a book (ISBN 9788184951387) from that site at the price of 156 postage free while this site shows lowest price to be 162. They still need to get there. Neverthe less a very useful link indeed.

  21. yom_cule

    September 15, 2010

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    I used to order from Indiaplaza, but have stopped ordering from the site. Indiaplaza does give the best discounts but its delivery schedules are unreliable. On the top of it the last book I got delivered from them looked like a Pirated Copy. I guess Indiaplaza has a policy of slipping in a few pirated copies of books along with the good ones to improve margins. I will try flipkart now and lets see how good their service is.

      • yom_cule

        September 17, 2010

        @ankur:
        There is no way one can be cent percent sure a book is pirated. After I got the book delivered I tired google searches like “how do i know if my book is pirated” but did not find any useful information. Even now if I can establish (or some one help me establish) that these guys delivered me a pirated book, I will come down on them like a pile of bricks. The book was supposed to be a product of Oxford University Press, and didnot look like even a distant distant cousin of the other OUP books I have.

        Anyways my first experience with flipkart has been good except for:

        1. the delivery slipped by a day (I already have a lot to read, so did not mind)

        2. the courier guy didnot return the change (It was a cash on delivery), small amount but not professional

        One big pro: I had ordered COD and checked the book before paying!! So I saved myself from being Indiaplaza-ed (i.e. conned)

  22. Sapna

    December 28, 2010

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    I found the best online bookstore “flappin” with a fresh stock of books and with a great service. I got my books in a minimal time and with a fresh look as I have purchased it just now from the bookstore.

    You can visit@ http://www.flapp.in

  23. Gopal

    May 17, 2011

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    I’ve been using Indiaplaza for ordering books for more than a year now. There’s hardly any book thats out of stock their; however once you order and make the payment and the book is not delivered after weeks, they’ll say that the book is actually out of stock!!!!

    The only good thing about Indiaplaza is the amazing discounts you get (25% minimum to members and generally 30-40%). But after reading your review on Flipkart I decided to make an order from there (after Indiaplaza had taken my money and said the book was out of stock). Flipkart-the UI is real simple, it clearly says the expected delivery time, discounts are decent (not very high but just about perfect). Hell, if the service is good then even 10-15% discount is good enough for most book lovers.

    Lets see if Flipkart delivers as it has promised but I am already beginning to like the site based on its simplicity and no nonsense mis-selling.

    Thanks

  24. Neeraj Bhai

    May 17, 2011

    Post a Reply

    I had posted my views on this forum long time back. Over a period of time I have seen Indiaplaza service deteriorating (I am their platinum customer) as below:

    a. Often titles I want are not available (I often find them on flipkart). My purchasing which used to be 90% from their site (yes, 25% discount is lucrative) but now because of availability reasons only 20% of my buying happens on that site.

    b. Sometimes even after taking an order they they keep on delaying sending the item (I am talking book alone) especially when it is to be sourced from abroad

    c. Their address book does not allow you to delete an entry you dont want to use. Many calls made to their helpdesk have not yielded any results

    d. In one case they offered an attractive pre-launch price and I ended up buying the book, only to find that I could buy the book cheaper post-launch!

    They would not be able to survive much if they continue like this – is my feeling.

    I find packaging of flipkart much superior to Indiaplaza’s though the latter is also good.

    Neeraj

  25. rupesh

    September 1, 2011

    Post a Reply

    your information and discuss is really helpful.i was looking for online book stores and satisfied but i have question that, will they give their services to rural areas or they focus on only city?by the way what is the sheduled of delhi book fair?

  26. Tulipmark

    October 22, 2017

    Post a Reply

    Nice Article…with nice information every buyer has its unique expierience .which increase our expierence after reading that information

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