PROS / Audiobooks.com has some of the best support services available.
CONS / The inventory of books is not enormous and there are not enough member benefits.
VERDICT / Audiobooks.com boasts great support services and a variety of genres, but the website could be better organized and have more titles in each genre.
Audiobooks.com is one of the best ways to download audiobooks onto a digital device. This audiobook service has some good aspects—the audiobooks are sorted into many categories and they offer an excellent search function. Nevertheless, the site as a whole is difficult to navigate.
This site has become a strictly-for-purchase service, although it does have a great membership price that mitigates the cost of buying audiobooks at a regular price. Nevertheless, it still has over 40,000 titles in its library and excellent support services, so we’ve made it our Top Ten Reviews Bronze Award winner.
A search engine allows you to search by author, performer, title and publisher. You can also limit your search to all editions or full length (unabridged) only.
The search engine is comprehensive, but it is not particularly well-organized. When selections appear, they are not alphabetized by author or title.
Audiobooks.com has eliminated its mail-in service in favor of a completely download-based business. It is much more efficient and up-to-date, but it might alienate some readers in the demographics that prefer CDs, particularly senior citizens who utilize audiobooks because they have problems with their eyesight.
One great aspect of the site are the reviews and starred ratings. Customers are able to rate what they thought of each book, and the rating appears whenever you see a book on the search engine’s results.
A publisher’s summary accompanies each book, and you can listen to a sample to get a feel of the narrator’s voice. The samples are generally quite long in comparison to some other sites on our lineup; one sample went on for ten minutes and covered a chapter that required the narrator to voice many different characters.
Ease of Use
The site as a whole is harder to navigate than most and seems somewhat cluttered. As you search the categories, there are long alphabetical lists of audiobooks and there are no pictures. Even though there is a button that will alphabetize the titles for you, it might look less confusing if the site organized it first before making its users do it themselves.
You might also have an easier time figuring out what plans are available by going to the gift card section, because the homepage does not contain an explanation for how to sign up or what the plans and cost are for the service.
The library of audiobooks is divided into categories and subcategories. Audiobooks.com has audiobooks on all of the major topics. However, the categories are unorganized and we found a number of categories that had few books in them.
The site also does not offer books in other languages, which is potentially a huge shortcoming in trying to cultivate an audience of foreign readers who have difficulty with written English.
There are a huge number of great genres available, however. The fiction and classics have a huge selection, and there are enough biographies to make you an expert in every kind of history.
Help & Support
Audiobooks.com has a user guide to teach you the ins and outs of using the service. You can contact customer support via email. They responded to our email in good time with relevant information.
There is also a telephone support line, and we were never kept waiting for long when we called. The FAQ section is also very helpful and comprehensive.
Audiobooks.com has a huge inventory and may have some hard–to–find titles. However, the titles are hard to find on the site itself, and it would be better if it offered foreign language audiobooks. That said, there are great support services and a decent membership plan.