Are you looking for an honest review on the Books Library plugin? Then, here’s what you were looking for.
Books Gallery is a simple WordPress book library plugin with which you can create an online book store, gallery, or library.
Using it, you can beautifully showcase the books and sell them directly from your site or third-party stores like Amazon. Also, it allows you to easily create stylish book product pages. And it’ll take just a few minutes to build your mobile-friendly books store.
To know more, we tested the Books Library plugin and brought you this detailed and comprehensive review. Here, we’ll go through the features, pricing, support, pros & cons, and more of the Books Gallery plugin.
And then, we can decide whether it’s the best WordPress library plugin that you can use or not. So, let’s begin.
A) Introducing Books Gallery – WordPress Book Library Plugin
Books Gallery is one of the best self-publishing freemium WordPress plugins to create an online book library or store. It’s a simple yet effective and powerful plugin.
Whether you’re a book author, publisher, or book store, you can easily build your own online books library and self-publish your books online. And the visitors can download the books for free or buy them. You can sell your books directly from your site with WooCommerce or sell them from a third-party site.
In fact, you can create a book gallery showcasing others’ books only and earn good money through affiliate marketing.
For example, you can set up a book gallery and market Amazon’s books. When people buy books on Amazon following the links on our site, you’ll earn a certain percent referral commission. But you should use your affiliate links for that. You can get such links after joining Amazon’s affiliate program.
If you’re a great marketer, then simply creating a book showcase site can make you self-sufficient. And, Books Gallery is the perfect plugin for making such a site!
Another option is to sell your own books from your site. And, even that’s easy with the Books Gallery plugin.
The plugin provides you with tons of necessary fields for a book library. Also, you can fully customize those options and make your book store look beautiful. Once the gallery is created, simply integrate WooCommerce, and then you can start selling.
That’s a great advantage because WooCommerce alone isn’t sufficient for making a feature-rich bookstore as it lacks features one needs to run a bookshop.
Now, let’s move forward in this Books Library review.
B) Key Features of Books Gallery Plugin
In this section of the Books Library review, we’re discussing the key features of the Books Gallery. As a freemium plugin, it comprises multiple free and paid features.
So, let’s have a look at these features.
1. Responsive Book Showcase
Books Gallery allows you to create a clean, modern, and responsive book showcase. So, using this plugin, you can display your desired books with a nice-looking view.
You just need to add books with the details. While the rest of the front-end display of the books is done by the plugin itself. And it’s carefully designed to provide an easy and cool look that adjusts on any screen size.
2. Fully Customizable Search Panel
A search panel is important for a bookstore or library to easily search the books on a huge list. For your visitors to quickly find their desired books, Books Gallery contains a fully customized search panel.
In the admin dashboard, you can find the Search Panel Settings. It includes Content settings and Style settings for you to adjust and customize the search panel, respectively.
There are 7 free search items that you can include in your search panel. They are book name, year, language, category, author, publisher, and ISBN.
Some of the options on the Search Panel Settings are:
- Show or hide the search panel.
- Enable or disable all the search items to show or hide on the search panel.
- Able to search items by placeholder or default text.
- Ability to search by submit button text option.
- Change the color of the submit button, border, and text.
- Can add a refresh button to reset the form data.
3. Powerful Gallery Settings Panel
Similar to the search panel, you can also manage your book gallery from the dashboard. For that, you must go to the Gallery Settings menu. There, you’ll see the Content settings and Styles settings as mentioned before.
On the Content settings, you can manage gallery columns for desktop and mobile devices. Then, you get to choose the book cover width to be default or full. Also, it includes various sorting options like ascending and descending order based on specific information. And these are just a few of them. There is more that it offers.
Next is the Styles settings. Here, you’re able to customize the contents you just finalized for your library. It involves choosing the color and font color of the download or buy button, books title, etc. Also, you get to control the font size of the book title, book description, and more.
4. Multiple Shortcodes
This plugin comprises multiple shortcodes to easily set up simple to complex functions on the online library. Some of these are for free while some are available on the paid versions of this plugin.
Going through the free ones, the first one is [wp_books_gallery]. Using this, all the books with their details will load on your webpage.
You can also display the books by a category using the shortcode, [wp_books_gallery category = “Thriller”]. (Replace Thriller with your book’s category name).
Using shortcodes on its paid versions, you get to show or hide the number of books to display. And if you want to display the books of an author, then it’s also possible.
Along with that, you can also show or display the search panel through a shortcode. Moreover, you’re able to add a pagination option for your gallery also by using a shortcode.
5. Numerous Books Details Settings
Note that users can check the details of a specific book on the detail page. So, when you click on a book, another page opens that contains information about that book.
For managing and customizing these book details, you can find the Books Details Settings menu on the admin dashboard. There, you get to choose how to display the author, category, publisher, publish date, ISBN, number of pages, country, language, and more along with their label text.
6. Integration with Many Other WordPress Plugins
Books Gallery has a deep integration with many other popular WordPress plugins. To start, you can use the Amazon Affiliate plugin in a very smooth way and sell other authors’ books with affiliate marketing.
Also, to sell your own books in your store itself, you can use WooCommerce. Books Gallery is well-integrated with WooCommerce to easily sell the books in your store. Furthermore, you can also integrate the book reviews and rating functions in your library.
You can also have a look at some of the other WordPress plugins that this company provides. Such as HM Product Catalog, HM – Cool Author Box, etc. that you can use alongside Books Gallery.
7. Other Premium Features
The premium version of the Books Gallery plugin contains numerous exclusive features. Here, we’re also going to discuss some of them in this Books Library review.
I) Advanced Book Showcase Page
The premium version has some amazing features for your book showcase page. Such as, you can show unlimited books and add pagination there. Also, you get to display the cost of each book.
Furthermore, you can allow visitors to add reviews and ratings to a book. Not only that, but you can add 2 buttons on the same book i.e. for download and buy now.
II) Featured Books Slider
In the Professional Plan, you can display the featured books in a slider using this shortcode:
[wp_books_gallery_view layout=’slide’ type=’featured’ display=8]
III) Latest Books Slider
Similarly, you also get to display the latest books in a slider using the following shortcode:
[wp_books_gallery_view layout=’slide’ type=’latest’ display=8 orderby=’date’ order=’desc’]
IV) Categorized Books Slider
Also, for displaying the slider on a specific category, you can use this shortcode:
[wp_books_gallery_view layout=’slide’ category=’Thriller & Crime’ display=6]
Now, let’s get into the next section of this Books Library review.
C) How to Install and Configure Books Gallery Plugin?
Here in this section of the review, we’re going to show you how to download and install the Books Library plugin. The process below is shown for both free and paid versions.
Install and Configure the Free Version
You can easily get the free version of this plugin to test and use on your site. For that, you need to install and activate it on your WordPress.
And the process to install and activate Books Gallery is similar to any other WordPress plugin.
So, please follow these steps to easily do so.
Step 1: Install the Plugin
First, you’ve to log in to your WordPress dashboard. After that, go to the Plugins section. Then, you need to click on the Add New option there.
On this page, there’s a search box on the top right side. There, you must type the keyword ‘Books Gallery’ and click enter to search this plugin.
In just a few moments, you can see the search results. So, you can also find the ‘Books Gallery’ plugin here. On this plugin, click on the Install Now button for installing it on your dashboard.
Step 2: Activate the Plugin
After the installation completes, the Install Now button gets replaced by the Activate button. So, you can click on the Activate button now.
By doing this, Books Gallery gets activated on your WordPress site. And you can find a new menu added on your dashboard i.e. ‘WBG Books’.
Here, you can see an option to activate the Freemius service while using the Books Gallery plugin in WordPress. By clicking on the Allow & Continue button, you get the ability to view and upgrade the premium features of the plugin.
Step 3: Configure the Settings
By default, most of the settings are disabled in this plugin. So, to display the required information about the books and customize their contents, you can check the settings in the dashboard.
We’ve already mentioned the Search Panel Settings, Gallery Settings, and Book Details Settings in the previous section. Now, as per your need, you can first enable some of the settings you need.
Like in the Content settings of the Search Panel Settings, tick on the Display Search Panel option and then enable the search items there. While in Gallery Settings and Book Details Settings, enable the information to display on the book showcase and detail page, respectively.
Similarly, you can customize your content from the Style settings of each of these settings. After making any changes to a setting, please don’t forget to click on the Save Settings button.
Now, you can start using this plugin for your book library.
Purchase and Install the Premium Version
To use the premium version, you need to purchase the plugin. And here we present you the steps to do it in this Books Library review.
So, you can do so from the website of Books Gallery itself. Or also from the Upgrade option in the WBG Books menu of your dashboard if you already installed the free version.
Step 1: Purchase the Plugin
Here, we’re referring to the purchase from the website. So, go through the FAQ menu on the navigation of the website. And then among the 3 pricing plans, choose one. On that chosen pricing plan, click on the Purchase button.
Now, you’ll be redirected to another webpage. There, you can see options to buy a Single Site License, 5-Sites License, and 20-Site License on a dropdown menu. Plus, there’s also an Annually and Lifetime access option for each license.
After you choose the license and payment option, you must enter your personal information including your email address on the form. Also, you’ve to fill in the payment information there and click on the Review Order button.
Note that, if you’ve got a promotional code, then you can also enter that.
Once you click on the purchase button, you’ll get an email that contains the download link. So, open that link, and the premium version will get downloaded to your system.
Step 2: Upload, Install and Activate the Premium Plugin
To install the premium version of Books Gallery on your dashboard, you need to first upload the downloaded file. So, go to the Add New option on the Plugins menu of your dashboard.
There, click on the Upload Plugin button and then the Choose File button. Now, upload the downloaded file here and press the Install Now button beside it.
After the installation completes, you can see the Activate link. For the activation, click on it and then, it’ll ask for the license key. So, add your license key and lastly, click on the button Activate.
Once the process completes after a certain time, the plugin gets completely installed and activated on your site.
Don’t forget to configure the settings as in the free version for your premium version as well.
D) How to Create a Book Showcase Page Using the Books Gallery?
In this section of the Books Library review, we’re going to show you how to use this plugin for creating a book showcase page. For that, we’re adding some random books as examples.
Moreover, here we’re first showing how to add a download button with the download link. This will enable your visitors to download the book for free.
Note that you can add any top WordPress theme that’s compatible with the plugin. And among the numerous theme options, we recommend you to use Kadence. It’s because it’s a popular theme with many free customizable templates. Plus, it’s also compatible with top WordPress plugins.
Here, we’ve also inserted the Astra theme. After that, please follow the steps below carefully.
Step 1: Create a Book Category
First, go to the Book Categories section in the newly added WBG Books menu of your WordPress dashboard. There, you need to add a new book category.
For that, enter the fields Name, Slug, and Description of the category as shown in the screenshot. Remember that the slug name must be in lowercase. Then, you must click on the Add New Book Category button to save the category.
Now, you can see the list of the added book categories on the right side of the same page.
Step 2: Add a New Book
After adding a category, it’s now time to add a book. So, go to Add New option in the WBG Books. There, enter the title of the book on the Add title text box. Then, in the big text area, you can also keep a short description of the book.
Next, you must enter some important information about the books. It includes author, publisher, published on, ISBN, and more.
Here, you can also add the download link of your book in the Download Link textbox. This enables your users to download the chosen book for free.
Also, make sure that you’ve enabled the settings to display the information as discussed before to show it on your page. And for book downloads, the download button must also be enabled in the settings.
Now, to add the image of the book, click on the Select Book Cover Here link available in the Featured Image section. Then, upload and select that specific image to set for that book.
Lastly, you can select the category of the book from the Book Categories section on the right side of this page. Also, choose the category of the page in the Categories section. If you haven’t made one, then you can add and select it from there itself.
Now, all you have to do is click on the Publish button.
Step 3: Create a Book Showcase Page
After the book categories and books are added, you must create a new page on the site. So, click on the Add New option in the Pages menu of your dashboard.
Then, add the title of the page like ‘My Books’ there. Also, you must use a shortcode that displays the books on your page.
So, on the body section of the page, add [wp_books_gallery]. After which, click on the Publish button.
Step 4: Preview the Page
Now, your book showcase page is ready. To check how it looks, click on the Preview option. The screenshot below is the demo of the book showcase page.
If you click on a book, then the book details page opens. There, you’ll see the overall information about that book. For that, make sure the book details page is enabled on the settings.
E) How to Sell eBooks Using the Books Gallery & WooCommerce?
In the previous section, we mentioned the steps to create a book showcase page where users can download the book for free.
Now, in this section of the Books Library review, we’re talking about how you can sell those ebooks from your WooCommerce store.
For that, follow these steps accordingly.
Step 1: Install and Activate WooCommerce
The first step is to install and activate WooCommerce on your dashboard. So, click on the Add New option in the Plugins menu.
Then, on the right side of this Add New page, you’ll see a search box. There, you can type the keyword ‘WooCommerce’ and press enter to search it.
Now, you may see the ‘WooCommerce’ plugin on the search result. Here, click on the Install Now button. By doing that the plugin will be installed on your site.
Right after that, you need to click on the Activate button. Now, WooCommerce is completely activated and running on your site.
As soon as WooCommerce is installed on your dashboard, you can see a few menus are added there.
Step 2: Add a New Product
Now, in this step, you must add a new product on WooCommerce. For that, click on the Add New option in the newly added Products menu.
There, you can add the product name and a short description. Below, there’s other various information that you need to fill in.
So, in the Product Data section, tick the Downloadable checkbox. It’s because you’re selling the ebook that users can download. Also, add the Regular price and Sales Price there in the General settings.
Then, on the Downloadable files, click the Add File button. Upload the book there and also keep the book name.
Now, click on the Publish button.
Step 3: Change the Download Link of the Book
Now, you need to change the download link of the book to the cart page link. First, you need to go to the cart page. For that, click on the View option in the Cart page available in the Pages menu.
Then, copy the webpage link. In our case, it’s ‘www.example.com/cart/’.
After that, go to the All Products option. It’s in the Products menu of the dashboard. There, when you hover in the previously added WooCommerce product, you’ll see the ID of the product. So, remember that ID number, like in our case it’s 142.
Next, go to the edit option of the previously added book on Books Gallery. It means Edit link on the book from the All Books option. It’s available in the WBG Books menu of the dashboard.
There, replace the free download link with the above-copied link. Also, you need to add the ID of the WooCommerce product here.
So, you must make it like this, ‘www.example.com/cart/?add-to-cart=142’.
Lastly, click on the Update button for saving changes.
Step 4: Keep the Product Hidden
Publishing the product saves it in the WooCommerce shop. But we already have a Book Showcase Page built using the Books Gallery plugin.
So, what we need to do is open the cart page of WooCommerce when you click on the Add to Cart button on this book showcase page.
For that, you must first hide this product page of WooCommerce. And you can easily do so from the Catalog visibility option in the Publish section.
So, click on the Edit link there and choose the Hidden radio button. Then, save the changes by clicking the OK then the Update button.
Step 5: Change the Button Text
Previously, the button that was displayed on your book showcase page was Download. But since you’re selling your books now, you need to change the button text to Add to Cart.
To do that, go to the Gallery Settings on the WBG Books menu. And at the end of the settings, you can see the Button Text option. There, write Add to Cart.
Finally, click on the Save Settings button.
Step 6: Preview the Page
Now, it’s time to see the result of integrating WooCommerce with the Books Gallery plugin. So, click on the View link of the book showcase page you’ve created from the Pages menu.
When you get the preview of the book page, you can click on the Add to Cart button for a book. This redirects you to your cart page with 1 quantity added to that book.
This shows that the integration is successful.
Step 7: Download the Book
Now let’s see what your visitors can do to download the book after purchasing it.
From the cart page, you can order the book by clicking on the Proceed to Checkout button.
Note that you can use any of the payment integration plugins on your WordPress site. Using such plugins, customers can pay through their credit cards via the gateway.
Next, fill in the user and payment information. After that, press the Place Order button. This redirects you to the Checkout page from where you can click on the button on the Download section.
Now, you can download the book only after the purchase.
That’s it! Hope that you followed these steps and also were able to do so.
Want to use a theme for your book store that’s compatible with WooCommerce? Then, here’s a list of the best WooCommerce themes.
F) Books Gallery Pricing Plans
The free version of this plugin is available on the WordPress.org directory. So, you can easily download it from there.
If you’re looking for the pro version, then the pricing plans are also quite affordable. Plus, you can try the paid versions as a trial for 14 days.
Going through the pricing plans, there are 3 of them. A brief discussion of all of them is explained below:
At $39.99/year, you can get this pro version with all the free features. Plus, it also provides:
- Normal support and updates for a year.
- Able to display unlimited books.
- Add free or premium book cost types.
- Contains 2 book price options i.e. regular and discount.
- Available in 115 different currencies, and more.
This plan costs you $59.99/year. Apart from all the basic features, it also offers you the following pro features.
- Priority/chat support and updates for a year.
- Able to show featured books, latest books, and categorized books with slider/grid view.
- Contains a book reading age option and book grade level option.
- Allows you to add an external image URL as a book cover, and more.
The Enterprise plan is priced at $179.99/year. Along with all the above-mentioned professional features, it also includes:
- Super-priority support.
- Perform setup service for free.
- Includes small customization for free if required, etc.
G) Customer Support in Books Gallery
Customer support is very important for anyone using a WordPress plugin. Whether you’re an expert or a beginner, you must check the customer support options of the plugin before using it.
To help you with your queries, Books Gallery provides you with many customer support options. With this, you can easily use the plugin.
If you’re using its free version, then you can see the Support Forum of the plugin on WordPress.org. Here, you can check how well users are asking and get their answers about the plugin. Similarly, you can also post your queries there.
Moreover, the original website of Books Gallery provides the rest of the support options. First, going to the FAQ menu of its navigation, you can find the answers to the commonly asked questions. Then on the Docs menu, you can see multiple video tutorials on using the plugin.
Furthermore, on the Blog menu, there are multiple blog articles written by experts on using the plugin. Also, it includes reviews on using other WordPress plugins.
On top of that, there’s also a Contact menu on the navigation. It includes a contact form from which you can send an email to the company. Also, you can connect with them using the social media links on this page.
And lastly, at the end of every webpage, you can find a subscription option. By submitting your email there, you’ll join their community. With that, you get to receive daily newsletters to know more about the plugin and its services.
Not to mention, there’s a live chat option also available. By that, you can solve your queries with the experts.
H) Pros and Cons of Books Gallery
Every plugin has its pros and cons. So, here we provide you with a list of certain pros and cons of Books Library in this review.
Pros of Books Gallery
The pros of the Books Gallery WordPress library plugin are:
- Easy to use and set up the plugin.
- Able to self-publish books or sell books from other authors and publishers.
- Ability to sell on your store or a third-party site.
- Contains multiple shortcodes to add simple to complex functions.
- Comes with powerful settings and customization options.
- Translation-ready plugin to translate it into your language.
Cons of Books Gallery
The cons of the Books Gallery WordPress library plugin are:
- Some of the important features are on the paid versions.
- New plugin with less community and resources to easily know about it.
Books Gallery has enough pros that make it one of the best WordPress library plugins. But if you’re still in confusion or would like to see other kinds of library plugins, then check its alternatives.
We’ve mentioned some of the alternatives in the coming section of this Books Library review.
I) Alternatives of Books Gallery
Books Gallery allows you to create a book showcase and manage the library for books. Similar to it, there are other alternatives to this WordPress library plugin that works for different areas.
So, you can check some of the alternatives in this section of the Books Library review.
First is Mooberry Book Manager, an easy-to-use plugin from which you can add your books to your site. All you need to do is fill out the forms to add the books to your site. Also, you get to include the book cover, reviews, and links to purchase a specific book.
Moreover, organizing the books in grids is also simple. You get to show all your books or specific books on the grids in a different order. With that, you can also have a sidebar with 4 options. They are a random book, a specific book, the newest book, and a book that’s coming soon.
Whereas WordPress Real Media Library is a file manager plugin that enables you to organize the uploaded media in folders. So, using this plugin, you get to organize numerous files into folders, collections, and galleries. The files can be pictures, videos, documents, or any media.
Organizing means you can create, rename, move, and delete folders. After that, you’re able to simply drag and drop the files into the folder. Note that you can use this plugin on your site even when you’re using the major WordPress themes, popular page builders, and other plugins.
Another WordPress library plugin is Enhanced Media Library which can manage a lot of media files. Here, you can add unlimited categories, tags, custom taxonomies, and third-party taxonomies. Plus, you get to also use configurable filters. It includes data, author, taxonomy, etc.
Moreover, you can show captions to your files like title, filename, or caption field. With the bulk selection, you can manage the files and conduct fast editing. Also, from drag-and-drop, you get to re-order the files in the media library.
J) Final Thoughts – Is it the Best WordPress Library Plugin?
After reading through this review, you may have already got enough idea about this Books Library plugin. And also decide on whether you should or shouldn’t use this WordPress book library management plugin.
To sum up, there are several features in the Books Gallery that we now know about. Using it, you can easily create an amazing online library.
It’s a simple plugin yet it’s powerful to easily create an online book store. So, whether you’re selling your books or that of other authors, you can easily do so with Books Gallery. And managing your books also becomes easy with this plugin.
However, we recommend you first install and use it on your dashboard yourself. With that, you’ll get to know its functions for a better understanding.
And that’s a wrap. We are at the end of this Books Library review article. We truly hope that you liked this review and are eager to try it plus use it on your site.
For further queries, you can simply post them down in the comment section. We’ll try our best to guide you. And if you’ve tried using it, then you can also share your experience. We’ll feel great to hear from you.