Basic literacy skills are something many of us take for granted. With the growing digital divide and more students learning online, many children are not getting the same opportunities with reading and writing that students did in the past. For individuals in countries where technology is not easily accessible, this limits their opportunities even more.
September 8th is International Literacy Day, which was founded by UNESCO and has been celebrated since 1967. Despite all of the progress that has been made, over 773 million young people and adults across the globe lack basic literacy skills.
International Literacy Day aims to improve literacy for everyone across the globe to improve the equality of basic dignity and human rights
There are several brands that offer the tools needed to help change this. Let’s check out a few book and stationary brands that you can shop with to continue improving your own literacy skills.
1. The Book Bundle
One of the best parts of reading is getting completely immersed in a new fictional world. Whether you’re lost in the magical wizard world of Harry Potter or you’ve stepped through the wardrobe into Narnia, there is something special about reading a good series. UK-based brand, The Book Bundle allows its customers to purchase collections or “bundles” of books at a discounted rate.
With book categories ranging from Action and Adventure all the way to Business, Finance, and Law, The Book Bundle has something for everyone from all age ranges. As a small book brand, this company harnesses the power of referrals to stay competitive through their rewards program. For every referral an existing customer makes, they give the new shopper €2 and receive €2 for themselves as well. Customers can also rack up points as they make more purchases to redeem for euros off their next purchase.
The Book Bundle enhances their customer experience even more by integrating reviews from Goodreads.com on their product pages. This allows customers to gain other people’s perspectives to influence their decision. This form of social proof can really build authenticity and trust with the brand in the mind of the customer, increasing customer loyalty as a whole.
If you’re looking for a great new series at a great price for your children (or yourself), look no further than The Book Bundle.
2. Eco Kids Planet
The changes brought about by the pandemic have caused a lot of disruptions for everyone. One of the most important changes is in the way young children are learning. Whether it be through online learning or distance education, children have had to adapt and many of them are now learning basic literacy skills through a screen. However, Eco Kids Planet is offering a way for parents to still bring educational content to their children on paper no matter where they are.
This educational brand offers nature and science magazines aimed at children ages 7-11. Eco Kids Planet is a subscription-based magazine brand geared towards children. Developing good literacy skills starts at a young age and that is when a love for reading can form as well. Not only does Eco Kids Planet offer valuable content, but it does so in an ethical way. They use eco-friendly packaging and don’t include any advertisements aimed at children. This is a brand you can feel good about shopping with.
With customer reviews and images on their home page, Eco Kids Planet builds an emotional connection with their customers. Comments like these allow parents to picture their own children enjoying the products in a similar way.
With individual magazines for just €3.99, customers can purchase one magazine about a certain animal or climate to cater to their own child’s interests. Magazines are a great tool for building literacy skills with kids because of their short articles, varying segments, and pictures to help children visualize what they are learning about.
Eco Kids Planet is here to help children keep learning in a way that is exciting for them!
3. Drawn and Quarterly
For some smaller book brands competing with giants like Indigo or Barnes and Nobles may feel impossible. However, there are several effective ways to differentiate yourself from these big brands. Drawn and Quarterly is a small Montreal-based business that does just that.
For starters, they have positioned themselves in a very specific niche in the market - sophisticated comics! What really makes them stand out is their dedication to their authors. Drawn and Quarterly is more than just a bookstore - they are a publishing company as well. They attract comic authors from across the globe and even have an Author page on their website featuring all of their contributors.
They really have honed in on their brand community as well by offering virtual and in-person events that bring readers together from anywhere in the world to discuss their common interest - Drawn and Quarterly. These personal events feature their authors, which is a an excellent way to bring an experiential reward to your customers that they just can’t receive anywhere else.
With comic books ranging from business and entrepreneurship to feminism, Drawn and Quarterly proves that comic books are not just for children. When we think about literacy skills, comic books often aren’t the first thing that comes to mind. However, everyone learns in a different way and comics, especially sophisticated ones such as these, are a great tool for developing or maintaining your love for reading.
4. Future Aids Braille Bookstore
Literacy is a skill that should be accessible to everyone of all abilities. Whether you are visually or hearing-impaired, it should not be a struggle to find brands that cater to your needs. For those who are visually-impaired, Future Aids is a Braille Bookstore with thousands of books, toys, aids, games, and even household accessories for their customers.
With product offerings for every age range, they truly are the definition of an accessible brand. This is also a great resource for educators who are looking to inform their students about what Braille is and how you can communicate with those who are visually impaired. They have an entire section dedicated to Braille Workshops where they offer Braille handouts, as well as resources to learn the ABC’s of Braille. This is great for everyone to learn because even if you are not visually impaired yourself, improving your Braille literacy skills may help you make someone who does rely on Braille feel more comfortable communicating with you.
If you are looking for a brand that can help you or a loved one enjoy the joys of reading and writing while still being accessible, you’ve found it! Check out Future Aids Braille Bookstore today.
5. A Kids Book About
Although we’ve established comic books aren't just for children, here’s a brand that absolutely is. Kids Book About has a variety of books about different important topics. The world is changing and becoming more and more complicated every second. Some things can even be difficult for adults to keep up with so imagine how your children feel. This brand delivers important information to children in a format they can understand.
What started out as a children’s book company inspired by a dad’s desire to teach his children about racism has since evolved into a “kids media company”. A Kids Company About allows their customers to select from a variety of product offerings including books, podcasts, and even classes about a range of social topics from racism, gender, mental health, and more.
Basic literacy includes just being able to read and write. But, this brand takes it a step further by allowing parents to equip their children with valuable, insightful information to make them socially aware people. If you’re looking for a great way to educate your kids at home because of the change in education brought about by the pandemic, look no further than A Kids Company About.
Customers also have the option to purchase a customized monthly subscription box. They can either select one, two, or three books to keep the conversation going with their children about important and empowering topics. This is a great strategy to increase purchase frequency for A Kids Company About and a great way to keep customers engaged and excited to see what’s in their next box. It’s a win-win!
6. Knack Shops
We’ve covered a lot of book brands but reading is only half of the story with literacy - writing is another part of it. Knack Shops allows customers to create curated gift boxes including stationary, journals, pens and more!
Writing goes beyond writing essays in school. Journaling is a great resource for anybody to help cope with stress and anxiety that we all face. It’s also a great way to take a break from the go-go-go hustle and bustle of the online world that we are experiencing all the time. This is a great way to give a thoughtful gift while supporting several small businesses at the same time.
Knack Shops may aim to make it easier for their customers to give gifts, but they also deliver gifts to their customers. They offer multiple ways for customers to earn points, which they can redeem for dollars off their next purchase. If the convenience of creating curated gifts in one place wasn’t appealing enough, the chance to earn and redeem points should be enough to keep customers coming back time and time again.
Knack Shops also acts as a small brand community by offering gifts from BIPOC owned, Black-owned, and women-owned businesses and allows customers to even filter by these categories if they choose to. Knack truly has a knack for delivering an easy way to support small businesses all in one place.
Seeing as this post is in recognition of International Literacy Day, it wouldn’t be complete without some book brands from across the globe. 99Bookscart.com is an online book retailer based out of India that offers books for 99 rupees. Customers can purchase best sellers for this discounted price, or purchase a Bookscart Box for 999 rupees.
When purchasing a custom box, customers get to select a genre which will feature 15 different books from various authors within that category. This is a perfect way to discover new books and start your mini at-home library for a great price. Not only does this provide a personalized, curated customer ecommerce experience, but it also acts as a fun surprise as you wait to find out what’s next on your reading list.
99BooksCart also features thousands of customer reviews on their website. This allows you to see what previous readers thought of certain books, as well as what the quality of the books they received was. As a brand that sells second-hand books, this social proof is a great strategy to build brand trust and authenticity for future first-time shoppers.
This brand levels up its exceptional customer experience with a language filter that allows customers to find books in their native language. By having this drop-down filter bar on their homepage in their navigation bar they make it extremely easy for customers to have a seamless user experience. With great prices and even better personalization, 99BooksCart will be a brand their customers just can’t put down.
8. Book Beau
Every book lover enjoys cozying up with a good book every once in a while. The key is having a comfortable reading setup. Book Beau makes this possible with their variety of reading-related accessories. They sell book sleeves and book beans which are comfortable pillows to help you find the best reading position for you.
They also sell book sleeves to prevent your books from being damaged. Whether you are renting a library book or are a student with piles of textbooks in your backpack, chances are you want your books to be in top-notch condition when you reach for it next. The book sleeves are offered in a variety of cute designs and sizes to fit every readers’ preferences.
Book Beau also has a customer loyalty program to keep their customers coming back for more. They offer a variety of ways to earn points to redeem for Boba cash, as well as a strong referral program. After all, book nerds love to share their favorite books with friends and family, so why not share their favorite book accessories as well?
Start your next chapter now
Whether you’ve always loved reading and writing, or it’s your goal to read one book by the end of this year, it’s no secret that building strong literacy skills are essential. Next time you think about buying a new book for your summer vacation, we urge you to check out one of these great brands before logging onto Indigo or Amazon. You might just be surprised at what you can find!
But for now, if you’ve made it to the end of this post, you’re already on the right track for celebrating International Literacy Day. Happy reading!