Comparing usage between selective and bundled e‐monograph purchases

Alain R. Lamothe (J.N. Desmarais Library, Laurentian University, Sudbury, Canada)

Collection Building

ISSN: 0160-4953

Publication date: 28 June 2013



The purpose of this paper is to present the results from a quantitative analysis comparing usage between collections of individually purchased e‐books and collections of e‐books purchased as part of large consortially negotiated bundles. The aim of this study is to determine if individually purchased e‐books have recorded a greater level of usage than e‐books purchased in large packages and, consequently, which of the two acquisition models is best suited for the library.


Usage rates of e‐books purchased individually from NetLibrary and MyiLibrary were compared to usage rates of e‐books purchased in large bundles from the same aggregators. Usage of e‐books purchased in large bundles directly from SpringerLink was compared to usage of e‐books on NetLibrary and MyiLibrary. The number of e‐books was obtained by simple count. Additional statistics tracked include the number of viewings.


Initial results indicate that individually purchased titles from both NetLibrary and MyiLibrary have consistently recorded a greater level of usage than the bundled titles on their respective platforms. A second quantitative analysis comparing two aggregated collections of individually selected titles to a very large bundled collection acquired directly from SpringerLink yielded somewhat different results. For the most part, SpringerLink bundled e‐books have recorded a greater level of usage when compared to bundled titles on NetLibrary and MyiLibrary.


This research is one of very few studies systematically and quantitatively comparing usage levels between e‐monographs individually selected and acquired as large bundles by a Canadian academic library.



Lamothe, A. (2013), "Comparing usage between selective and bundled e‐monograph purchases", Collection Building, Vol. 32 No. 3, pp. 116-121.

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