Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Scholar Selection: Chegg

Chegg
iTunes App Store - Free!


All us students know how much a monopoly our campus bookstores are. Spending close to $500 for books we're only going to use for just over 4 months, and then returning them for a fraction of the original cost. Many of us are left to look for alternatives as our wallets get skinnier and skinnier throughout our term in school. Many of you probably heard of Chegg Book Rental Service before and used alternatives such as Amazon or other rental sites. Well, the Chegg App is the website equivalent made specifically for your iDevice for those on the go.

Packing their ISBN database into this App you can easily find your books for a fraction of your bookstores cost, while your browsing the shelves for to correct texts. Broken down into an easily navigable 5-button toolbar, you can access your Chegg account whenever, and utilize all the features Chegg has to offer to get you saving that dough you saved up over vacation.

When you first open the App, it will ask you for your account information one time only and/or ask you to sign up, which is free. Then from there, you'll always be at the Search tab upon startup, which is where you will find your books. Here you can simply enter in your ISBN numbers that your professors have provided you with, or, if you're like me and browsing the bookstore for price matching, you can pick up the text you need and scan its barcode. Searching their massive database, you'll be directed to a screen in which you can choose to rent the book for the entire semester for a greatly reduced price. Just keep in mind that it is a rental, unless you decide to keep the book where you'll be charged the full price.

Once you find all the books that you're going to rent, you'll be taken to the Cart tab before you checkout. Here you can make any last minute adjustments before you checkout and see the total amount of money you'll be dropping on books you'll probably only be half reading anyway. $150 sounds much better than $300 doesn't it?

The My Books tab will show you all the rentals you have, and all the books you've ever rented from Chegg. You can track the shipping, see the approximate date of arrival, and when you're going to need to return the book (in which Chegg is really gracious with the time given, about 3 weeks longer than the actual end of my semester). By tapping any current book; you can extend your rental if need be, you can return the book by having the app print you out a return slip, and you can purchase the book at full price (minus the rental price). You can also find the closest UPS store in your area via GPS and drop the book off in the original box with the packing slip you printed for your free return.

Your Alerts tab will show you any noteworthy progress or complications of your order, also sending you push notifications and badge numbers with each new alert keeping you on top of your game. The More tab allows you to edit your account information such as name, email, shipping address, and school info (to give the site a social network feel, knowing who else from which school rented what). The help section contains plenty of menus for any sort of issue you may be having with Chegg (which I haven't had yet), and you can always give them feedback to let them know how they're doing. Lastly, there's another button to find UPS Stores around you.

I've personally had experience with Chegg for over a year now, and let me just tell you that their service is one of a kind. I've dabbled with other sketchy book rental services that can't deliver quickly and always sent your book in a shipping bag or torn up box, usually degrading the quality of the book a bit. Chegg has always shipped my book immediately with an arrival of usually 4 days or less. The books always come in a high-quality orange Chegg box (which you should keep for easier returns!!), with packing foam to protect the contents. Chegg has also won me over with the little freebies they like to throw in each of their boxes, such as Chegg post-it notes, bookmarks, notepads, pencils and coupons for plenty of other things. It's the little things that turn me on to their high-quality customer service. When it comes time to return, they'll even call you to let you know that the books are due soon from a pleasant recording from Chegg's CEO.

I'd have to make this one of my Scholar Selection Essential Apps, simply for the quality of their service. Plus, who doesn't like saving a couple hundred dollars on mandatory books?

And for all the eco-friendly people out there! With each purchase from Chegg, they will plant a tree to whichever forest reservation you choose, so they're keeping it Green.


Wanna see more from my Scholar Selection? Follow the link below to see more!
The Scholar Selection for Great Apps Related to School

Like Saving or Earning Money from Apps? Follow the link below to see more!
Apps That Save and Earn Money to Get That Cash Flow

As always, let me know how I'm doing with a comment! Follow me if this material is awesome!

49 comments:

  1. Cool, might download it for my iPhone.

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  2. Will defiantly be downloading this for next semester, thanks!

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  3. nice!! I hope this helps out the college kids out there

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  4. Never tried renting, but it's a great option!

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  5. Looks pretty useful, but it's still so expensive. How can they charge that much if you're only owning/renting a digital copy?

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  6. @Wobbles

    It's not a digital copy, it's the actual textbook that gets shipped to you.

    Look at it this way, You go to the campus bookstore, and a new, lets say, science text is $150. Sound about right? Now Chegg, could have the same book rental for $50-$60. Right there you save $90-$100. At the end of the semester you go to sell your book back and, would you look at that. There's a new edition coming out next semester. The bookstore is only going to buy the book back for $5-$10 max. You're still saving $80-$95. It makes sense to me :D

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  7. wow this seems like a really useful way to save money

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  8. Ahh cool, does this work on all androids or just the Iphone?

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  9. i download them..
    or buy them at amazon..or ebay!

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  10. I cannot begin to say how bummed I am that this did not exist when I was in school! I wasted (I mean, spent) so much money on books!! Great read, I can't wait for more!

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  11. It seems quite involved haha, but I might get it for my android phone.

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  12. hey i dont have a iphone can u do some android apps

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  13. @The Govenor
    @ThePrynce

    I'll be doing more crossover apps as the week continues. Keep an eye out!

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  14. I wish I knew about this last month. I'm defiantly trying it out next semester.

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  15. I'm actually working on an app myself. Good insight.

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  16. as poor student thanks a lot for this`

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  17. would've loved to have had this when i was going to school...

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  18. Yeah I use Chegg all the time, thats always how i get my books every semester. Thank you chegg.

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  19. Amazon used list is the best :)

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  20. Oooh nice, will definitely look into this!

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  21. I've looked into renting with chegg, but I have found greater savings in buying used and selling back to my school library or amazon.

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  22. Thanks for sharing this application. This is a useful application especially for university level students. I will install it on my iPhone.

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  23. did not know about this one. good to know for next year when I gotta buy books again

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