Multichannel books retailer Barnes & Noble Inc. has revamped its key online education community and given it a fresh look and more advanced features, including the chance for readers to purchase e-books.
Barnes & Noble, No. 41 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, has re-launched SparkNotes.com, a study aid web site and digital community. New features and functions include:
- An updated test preparation blog for the Scholastic Aptitude Test written by Allen Mogol, a former marketing director with the College Board.
- The ability to purchase more than 700 digital textbooks with accompanying study guides.
- A new flashcard application for studying vocabulary, history, biology and other subjects.
- Interactive quizzes for 20 literature study guides.
- New blogs that cover writing, grammar, style, assignment planning, and guidance on selecting and applying for colleges and financial aid.
- A new non-scholastic area called SparkLife, which includes content related to the social and cultural side of school and college.
The newly re-launched SparkNotes.com is the latest in a series of moves by Barnes & Noble to target the textbook and student markets. Last month Barnes & Noble acquired sister company Barnes & Noble College Booksellers Inc. for $596 million. Barnes & Noble College Booksellers, which generated revenue of about $1.8 billion in fiscal 2009, operates 624 college bookstores through multi-year management agreements.