For bibliophiles nothing is more painful than parting with their books. At times your book shelf may run out of space, or you have read a particular one so many times that you no longer want to posses it — what do you do then? While novels may still find a place in your study or old almirahs, what would you do with your academic books? Selling off old books hardly provides any resale value and keeping them may not be too practical.
If this is the story of your life, www.booknix.com is the place for you. A platform created by Amit Mondal, a second year BCA student from Durgapur in West Bengal, you can post and sell old books at a good price here.
Mondal, who also has a YouTube channel, where he talks about technology and gadgets, doesn’t like to read text books but loves reading tech magazines. “I love to explore more about gadgets and experimenting with them on my YouTube channel,” he says. When asked about the birth of the portal, he says, “One day as I was sitting in my classroom, contemplating on how to start a new venture which can help others, I saw an old library book kept on the table and it was like an Eureka moment! That’s how it began.”
Creating a website like this requires a lot of research because platforms like OLX and Quikr allow one to sell used things including books. “These platforms mainly focus on electronic goods and household items. They do not focus on students’ need. That’s the reason I created this platform. We Indians sell our old books for peanuts to raddiwalas, so I thought if I could come up with a dedicated platform to sell them online, it will not only help the students get a fair price but also the needy who may not be able to afford new books.”
Mondal first confirmed the absence of any such website and then began by creating a demo website to test the back-end and the interface. “When everything fell into place, I purchased a domain name and created the website which took me almost two months and then gave it a final shape,” he explains.
Although his initial plan was to create a platform where people could exchange old books, right now this feature is not active on Booknix. However, once the website attracts more traffic, Mondal plans to introduce some more features to it, so that people can not only sell off books for a good price but they can also exchange and do many other things related to books and reading at a single place.
Although everyone from a 10-year-old to someone in 90s can post ad on Booknix, Mondal’s target audience remains youngsters. “Many students face problems in finding some books after getting promoted to the next class or finishing a semester. So if a senior posts on the website, other students can easily get these books,” says Mondal.
Currently Mondal is promoting his website through Facebook, Twitter and by send emails, and messages to those who may seem interested and would want to help him in his startup.
Speaking of the website’s modus operandi, Mondal says, “It’s simple. Sellers have to create an account and post a free ad. Instead of earning Rs 25-30 from the scrap dealer, the seller can earn around Rs 150-180 for a book that cost him/her Rs 300.”
“If Booknix reaches my estimated user engagement or traffic in six to eight months, I will update it with some more exciting features, so that Booknix becomes a one-stop destination for students and India’s popular site for buying and selling books.”
Follow the writer on Twitter @amu_prasad