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10 Advantages of Paper Books in 2024

It’s impossible to ignore the popularity of digital entertainment. However, books are one medium where digital options can’t quite compare with a more traditional approach.

After all, humans appreciate tactile experiences, such as popping bubble wrap or writing with an exceptionally smooth pen. There’s something about the feel of paper when you turn the page that doesn’t stack up against swiping on a screen — not to mention the appealing smell of a freshly printed book or yellowed, aging parchment. 

That’s why physical books still thrive in the entertainment market, even in the face of impressive technology that makes our lives easier each day. So if you’re an author looking to market your own books and offer the most gratifying reading experience available, e-books are an important market to consider, but you can’t afford to ignore the appeal of physical books.

10 Benefits of Paper Books

People prefer physical books for a variety of reasons, but these are some of the most common reasons that should prompt you to think twice before exclusively publishing digitally:

Enhanced Reading Comprehension

Something about holding a book in your hand engages your mind in a way that digital devices haven’t been able to replicate. Studies have shown that print books can help readers absorb more information and remember more details compared to reading digital text.

Allow for Better Sleep

Staring at your phone before bed has several detrimental effects. First, the harsh, blue light tells your brain that you should be awake and alert. Secondly, phones are communication devices and the feeling that a call, text, or email can come at any second primes you to be ready for an emergency. On the other hand, one of the main advantages of paper books is that they relax the mind before sleep.

Easier on the Eyes

Screens cause eye fatigue with high use. One of the reasons for this (according to the Mayo Clinic) is that when you stare at screens, you don’t blink as much as you would otherwise. This dries out your eyes and is hard on your vision. Additionally, the American Optometric Association says that screen use can cause computer vision syndrome, manifesting in eyestrain and blurred vision. 

No Need for Batteries

When you’re on a plane or a train, you might not have access to a charger. Thankfully, physical books require zero power to operate! Also, if your device has to go into airplane mode or loses internet connection, you could lose the ability to read your e-book, depending on the platform you use to read. With a paper book, there’s no need to remember to bring your charger – get right to reading instead.

Artistic Book Covers

Unlike plain e-readers, paper books often have artistic covers that showcase great designs. Visually appealing covers not only make the books themselves more attractive but also add aesthetic flair when the books are displayed on bookshelves, enhancing your home’s decor.

Opportunity to Build Your Library 

Unlike digital books that come and go, paper books allow readers to permanently collect and curate a library that reflects their interests. Building a home library of cherished books can provide not only personal satisfaction, but allow opportunities to reread favorites, loan books to friends, and enable serendipitous discoveries by browsing spines on shelves.

Ability to Share Books With Others

While sharing e-books is possible (depending on the platform), handing a physical book to a friend is far easier. Printed books have the added benefit of sidestepping compatibility issues. Some e-book platforms have proprietary formats, which makes sharing books even more difficult. Of course, you can still offer a digital copy of your book from your website or storefront in a universal format if you desire.

Personable Experience

Paper books can provide an experience in and of themselves. Physical books give an excellent sense of progression, and the feeling of finishing a book and turning the final page is immensely satisfying. E-books may show progress in terms of a “percentage completed,” but it doesn’t have the same impact as satisfactorily sliding the book back into its place on the bookshelf.

Paper Books Can Evoke Nostalgia

The tangible smell and feel of paper pages can bring back nostalgic memories of beloved childhood reads or special moments spent lost in a good book. Unlike cold glass screens, curling up with a comforting paper book provides a traditional, timeless experience that evokes cozy feelings of nostalgia for many readers.

Recyclable

While e-books can have an advantage over printed books in terms of environmental impact, paper books are still recyclable! Also, once a book has been printed, its carbon footprint is set. On the other hand, e-books require electricity to read, which means that devices will require additional charging time.

Advantages of Printed Books over E-Books

Especially for self-published authors, printing physical books can be seen as a form of legitimacy. Creating a product that a customer can hold in their hands gives real weight to it and can make it seem more special. While e-books offer the ability to keep an entire collection of books on a single device and generally cost less, many readers believe that paper books’ advantages — such as information retention — more than overshadow the benefits of e-books.

Bring Your Book into the Physical World with Print Bind Ship

It’s safe to say, that even in the age of e-books, paper books aren’t going away anytime soon. They offer too many benefits and have earned their place as a classic. Have an idea for a printed book? We work with self-published authors and publishing companies alike to turn ideas into the real thing – namely, paper books. We’re one of the leading book printers in North America, whether you’re looking for small-batch printing or print-on-demand books. We maintain some of the most sophisticated printers in the industry and offer fast turnaround times.

And our solutions don’t just stop at printed books, we can create textbooks, custom kits, specialized print-on-demand merchandise, and so much more. We’re also a leading book fulfillment provider, managing the hassles of warehousing, order fulfillment, packaging, shipping, and returns. Our solutions are second to none, so get in touch if you’re looking to print a book by partnering with Print Bind Ship!

FAQ

Why are paper books better than e-books?

Paper books offer increased information retention and a more pleasing experience for readers. Many prefer paper books over e-books because of the tactile experience they offer, the lack of screen-related eye strain, and the pleasure of physically flipping pages. Also, if a reader wants to share a book with a friend, that process is as simple as handing them a copy.

Why are paper books better for your health?

Screens can cause eyestrain and disrupt sleep cycles, while paper books are much more relaxing for the eyes and mind. They’re also better for the planet’s health since they don’t require power and are usually recyclable.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of paper books and e-books?

Paper books don’t require batteries, are better for your health, are recyclable, and are more easily shared. However, e-books don’t take up physical space and are generally cheaper.

Can paper books be safer for children than e-books?

Unlike tablets that emit blue light, paper books avoid disruption of healthy sleep cycles in kids. Paper books also avoid exposure to internet dangers and allow parents to have greater control over the content their kids are consuming.

Why are paper books better for retention and comprehension?

Paper books allow readers to highlight, take margin notes, and visually flip through pages already read to refresh comprehension. Studies show paper book readers absorb more information.