Reading is still popular today. Technology may have reduced traditional reading as many materials are now online, but many people still read printed books.
If you’re a book lover, you’ll need to keep track of what books you read and how good they were. Also, you’ll need recommendations on what books to read next.
It may be difficult to decide on your own from the millions of books available. You can make things easier with platforms like Goodreads and StoryGraph.
In this post, our focus is on these platforms – StoryGraph vs Goodreads. We’ll put them next to each other, talking about their features, pros, cons, similarities, and differences. This will help you to decide your pick.
Read on to find out.
Notably, StoryGraph was launched by Nadia Odunayo and currently has an administrative team of three. Despite being a relatively small platform, it’s attracting more users due to its simplicity.
Notably, StoryGraph is marketed as a Goodreads alternative that’s not owned by Amazon. Hence, if you’re a Goodreads user, you can switch to StoryGraph easily.
One of the best things about StoryGraph is that most features are available for free. However, a Plus plan is available if you need an improved and more customized experience.
Goodreads was launched in 2007 as a website for finding books and creating library catalogs. It was founded by Otis Chandler and Elizabeth Khuri Chandler.
However, Goodreads is currently an Amazon subsidiary as the company acquired it in 2013.
Goodreads is arguably the most popular reading tracking and management platform. It boasts millions of users from all over the world.
As an Amazon subsidiary, it connects with Kindle, Audible, and the Amazon store, making it a suitable platform for readers and authors alike.
Due to its popularity, many people mistake Goodreads for a book reading platform. However, it’s not. You can discover books to read, but you can’t read them on the platform.
Instead, you get recommendations on where you can get the books. Also, you can rate and drop reviews after reading.
You don’t pay to use Goodreads, and the platform has no premium plan of any kind.
Find out what sets StoryGraph and Goodreads apart from the side-by-side comparison below:
First, you must create an account to use StoryGraph. You can create an account by completing the registration form. The website doesn’t support signup using a third-party account platform.
You can access the form on the website or download the mobile app on the Google Play Store or Apple Store. The procedure isn’t different on any of these platforms.
The form requires you to enter your email address, username, and password. After registration, the website redirects you to your dashboard – you won’t need to verify your email.
You can begin searching for books from your dashboard using the search bar at the top-right corner.
When you find the book you want to read, you can add it to your read list. You can also add books to a “currently reading” list or “did not finish” list. Furthermore, if you have the book, you can mark it as owned.
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You need an account to use Goodreads, and you can easily create one by completing the registration form. Alternatively, you can signup using your Amazon, Google, Apple, or Facebook accounts.
Goodreads has a mobile app for Android and iOS devices, so you can simply download the app to sign up.
After creating your account, Goodreads walks you through a four-step getting started stage. You can set a reading goal, find friends, rate books, and view recommendations.
You can skip these steps and go straight to your dashboard. The platform will prompt you to select and follow your favorite genres when you visit your dashboard for the first time.
The Goodreads dashboard is relatively packed. Nevertheless, the primary options you need are outlined in the top menu for quick access.
Although getting started with StoryGraph isn’t difficult, Goodreads is simpler as it lets you sign up with third-party accounts.
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Searching for books is simple on StoryGraph; simply enter the book keyword in the search box. You can search using the book’s title or the author’s name.
Notably, StoryGraph displays a drop-down list once you type the first letter of the keyword. As a result, you can skip the results page and go straight to the book’s page.
However, the primary options you get on the books page are featured on the results page.
For example, you can add books to your reading list directly from the search results page. You don’t need to visit the book page.
Furthermore, you get details such as the publish date, page count, categories, and tags at a glance.
You’ll find the search bar in the top menu on your Goodreads dashboard. Type in the name of the book or author you want to read.
You get a dropdown list, but you’ll get more options on the results page. Goodreads displays books that match your search query along with many other options.
You can sort the list by title, author, or genre. You can switch between books, groups, quotes, stories, people, trivia, and lists. These may be too much if you simply need a book, but they’ll be handy if you want more.
On the right tab, you’ll find a “related shelves” list. It’s simply a list of book categories that match your search query.
You can add books to your read list and view ratings, publish date, and edition counts from the results page. You can also rate books.
Book search is simple on Goodreads and StoryGraph. However, StoryGraph wins here as it displays a more friendly results page.
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StoryGraph is primarily a platform for tracking what you read. As a result, the tracker is one of the most important features you get.
You can monitor your reading progress over long periods, and the more you track, the better book recommendations you get.
To make things easier, StoryGraph displays your tracking metrics in charts – mostly bar and pie charts.
It creates charts of the different books you’re reading and keeps track of your reading page and the page number. You get detailed tracking insights when you click on any element on the chart.
You can track books you’re reading on Goodreads. However, you first need to set “date read” for books you add to your read list.
In other words, you must first finish reading a book to use the tracking feature. When you set the date you finished reading the book, it gets added to the pages’ stat dashboard.
On this dashboard, you’ll find the number of pages you’ve read in a year. For example, if you’ve read three books in a year, with 300, 200, and 100 pages, respectively, the total tracked page count would be 600.
When you click on the tracking bar, you get a rundown of the different books and their different page counts.
StoryGraph is the winner here as the page tracking option is more straightforward. You can track actively as you read, unlike Goodreads.
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StoryGraph recommends books for you based on your reading history. However, if you’re a new user, you can get recommendations by completing a quick survey.
First, you need to select your top five genres and your best characteristics in a book. Furthermore, you can choose genres you don’t like and other reading turn-offs you may have.
After you submit and confirm your answers, the platform takes a few seconds to scan and generate recommendations for you.
You can always adjust your preferences to get different recommendations. From the recommendations page, you get temporary recommendations without altering your preferences by clicking the “What are you in the mood for?” option.
You can choose a genre, set a reading pace, and page count to get the best results.
From your Goodreads dashboard, you’ll find the recommendations option on the left tab, below the currently reading option.
Typically, Goodreads will recommend books for you from your reading history. In particular, you must have rated at least twenty books to get recommendations.
Hence, as a new user, you need to first search for books yourself. The only other option you have is to consult the popular lists.
You can access Goodreads Listopia to find lists of top-rated books by other readers to find what to read.
The Listopia contains lists like best books ever, best books of the 21st century, best books of the year, best books of the month, etc.
Notably, when you read and rate up to twenty books, you’ll get some of the best recommendations from Goodreads.
Clearly, StoryGraph is more dependable for getting recommendations than Goodreads.
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With StoryGraph, you can create groups and join groups created by others. However, this option is limited to Plus account users.
As a free user, you only have access to Buddy Reads. StoryGraph’s Buddy Reads lets you invite up to eight people to read with you.
You can invite other readers by entering their usernames. Notably, the platform will highlight readers you follow or that follow you to invite. If you’re new and have no followership, it will recommend random users with similar tastes.
Notably, you can set an end date, and those you invite can share their thoughts and comments after reading. If you don’t set an end date, Buddy Reads will end automatically once every user has marked the book as read.
Groups are among the best things on the Goodreads platform. You can create a group or join any of the popular groups.
Since Goodreads is a famous platform with millions of users, the reading groups are usually packed. In particular, the most popular group on the platform has more than 152,000 members.
Goodreads groups are not limited to a particular book or author. Some groups mainly instruct readers to read a specific book for a particular period, after which members will share comments and thoughts.
Furthermore, groups can be private, public, restricted, or secret.
Goodreads and StoryGraph support groups and book clubs. You must pay to access reading groups with StoryGraph, which gives Goodreads the edge.
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StoryGraph doesn’t specifically feature a program for authors. However, you can sign up on the platform as an author and keep track of what people say about your books.
The option to follow users on the platform makes StoryGraph an ideal option for authors to connect with readers. You can easily build a following if your books are published and in the StoryGraph database.
Notably, you can find users in the community section to follow. You can also add them as friends. The StoryGraph community records multiple posts per minute, so there are many people to meet.
When you follow or add a user as a friend, you’ll find their posts on your home dashboard.
Furthermore, Buddy Reads is also ideal for authors to get others to read their books.
You can create an author account on Goodreads if you have a published or soon-to-be-published book. Notably, your book must be found in the Goodreads database.
When you create an author account, you get a verified author page that features all your books. Readers can follow your page for engagement.
You can do a lot with your Goodreads author page. You can link to your website or blog or run adverts. To interact with your readers, you can conduct question and answer sessions, drop reviews, and even do giveaways.
You can apply to claim your profile if your book is already in the Goodreads database. Applications for author profiles are usually handled within two business days.
Like reader accounts, creating a Goodreads author account is free.
Goodreads wins here as it has a dedicated author program. Nevertheless, the Follow option on StoryGraph is dependable.
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StoryGraph admins plan to build an API to help users integrate reading data on other websites and apps. The feature isn’t available at the moment but is on the platform’s roadmap.
As a relatively new platform, advanced features like an API are still under development. Nevertheless, it could be available soon. When it does become available, it will likely be a paid feature.
To substitute for the lack of an API, StoryGraph lets you import your reading data from third-party platforms like Goodreads.
You can import your currently-reading, read, to-read, and did-not-finish lists. You can also import custom lists.
With the Goodreads API, developers can display data from the platform on websites or apps. It’s a flexible API, but most people use it to connect to Goodreads.
Goodreads Connect is a simple feature that lets you connect other platforms to Goodreads accounts. In other words, you can set up the feature on your website so people can sign in with their Goodreads accounts.
However, Goodreads plans to retire its API soon. In fact, the platform stopped issuing new developer keys at the end of 2020. Hence, you can only access API methods that don’t require developer keys.
While StoryGraph doesn’t feature an API at the moment, Goodreads is planning to retire its API. As a result, it’s a draw.
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If you have any issues with StoryGraph, you can reach the customer support team by sending them a message.
However, if it’s a query about an absent feature, you can check the roadmap to see if it’s under development.
The StoryGraph support team takes around 24 hours to respond to queries. If you’re a Plus user, you get a much faster response.
Goodreads has a help center where you can find help articles, questions, and answers. There are articles on managing your account, friends, using the mobile app, and privacy and security.
It’s a dependable support resource, especially if you’re a new user.
Furthermore, you can ask an open question in the questions and answers section. Anyone – including Goodreads admins and other users like yourself – can contribute answers.
You can get direct support on Goodreads by submitting a contact form, and you’ll get a response in about a day.
Goodreads takes the lead here as it features a help center and Q&A, and you can submit a support ticket. StoryGraph, on the other hand, only offers priority support to premium users.
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StoryGraph doesn’t mandate a subscription; you can use the platform free for life. However, you can subscribe to the Plus plan if you need advanced features.
The plan costs $4.99 per month, or you can pay $49.99 for a year. StoryGraph offers a 30-day free trial on the Plus plan, and you won’t need to enter any payment details.
The StoryGraph Plus plan primarily is to help sustain the platform and keep it ad-free and independent. Nevertheless, the advanced features you get include:
- Advanced statistics
- Buddy Read book suggestions
- Similar users
- Personalized similar books
- Road map
- Priority support
As mentioned before, Goodreads is 100 percent free. The platform has no premium features, so there’s no paid plan.
Regarding pricing, Goodreads and StoryGraph are equivalent, as you can use both for free forever. However, the Plus plan gives StoryGraph a slight edge.
- Free account
- Simple interface
- iOS and Android mobile app
- Affordable premium plan
- Easy to sign up
- Easy tracking dashboard
- Reading statistics
- Reading community
- Quality recommendations
- Doesn’t support signing up with third-party accounts.
- Groups and book clubs are premium.
- No explicit support for authors
- Free to use
- Mobile app for Android and iOS
- Easy to get started
- Signup with a third-party account
- Reading statistics
- Top-notch recommendations
- Massive reading community
- Author program
- API support
- Reliable help center
- Relatively complex interface
- Tracking isn’t intuitive
- Needs at least twenty ratings for recommendations
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- Both Goodreads and StoryGraph are only book trackers, not book reading platforms.
- Both are available for free.
- Both StoryGraph and Goodreads are easy to search through.
- They both feature reading statistics.
- Both platforms feature a mobile app for iPhone and Android devices.
- Both platforms allow users to follow each other.
- With either Goodreads or StoryGraph, you get support for book clubs and groups.
- Both platforms are dependable for getting good recommendations.
- Goodreads supports only free accounts, while StoryGraph supports free and premium accounts.
- StoryGraph doesn’t support third-party accounts for signing up, while Goodreads does.
- StoryGraph features a simpler interface than Goodreads.
- Goodreads lets you track books after reading, but with StoryGraph, you can track as you read.
- Goodreads requires at least twenty ratings to get recommendations, but with StoryGraph, you get recommendations even without reading anything.
- Goodreads features a depreciating API, while StoryGraph features none.
- Goodreads lets you create groups for free, while the option is premium on StoryGraph.
- Goodreads has an author program while StoryGraph does not.
Goodreads might be the older and more feature-rich platform, but compared to StoryGraph, it’s complex. StoryGraph is the better option to use if you want an intuitive reading tracker.
StoryGraph is better at tracking and recommendations than Goodreads. These are the two main features you need in a reading tracker.
Areas where Goodreads excel, like the API and author program, are secondary. You won’t need them if you simply want to read books.
Tom loves to write on technology, e-commerce & internet marketing. I started my first e-commerce company in college, designing and selling t-shirts for my campus bar crawl using print-on-demand. Having successfully established multiple 6 & 7-figure e-commerce businesses (in women’s fashion and hiking gear), I think I can share a tip or 2 to help you succeed.