Different websites and retail companies are better, depending on what kind of comics readers are interested in ordering – whether it's current titles, graphic novels or collected editions, or one-of-a-kind back issues.
Fans looking to get the latest comics series delivered to them would do best with a subscription service. Some major publishers, such as Marvel Comics, run their own subscription services. Others, such as Dark Horse and DC Comics, have their subscriptions handled by a third-party company.
There are also a number of mail-order comics companies that sell not only recent issues from a wide range of comics publishers, but also comics-collecting supplies and related merchandise. This includes everything from backing boards to toys, figurines, and other licensed collectibles.
Comic fans should be aware that reprint editions usually aren't collectors' items. Even most graphic novels (unless they're landmark first editions) don't appreciate in value considerably. However, they are ideal for catching up on the past adventures of major characters, and, when purchased via mail-order, they can be very affordable.
Auctions and private sales have always been the best place for serious collectors to find the comic-book issues that they're looking for, and the Internet has made connecting with other aficionados much easier. Fan forums can lead to connections between comic collectors. Auction sites such as eBay.com can also facilitate private sales.
However, when collector comics are exchanged exclusively by mail, there's no chance to inspect the condition of the comics before receiving them. Buyers should take extra care, dealing only with trusted sellers and getting as much documentation (photographs, etc.) before committing to a mail-order comics sale.
Getting a comic certified can also help ease buyer concerns – and, for the seller, make it easier to find a willing buyer. Valuable comics should also be insured when sent by post or courier.
In short, subscription services are best for ongoing, current comics; big distributors can give good deals on book-length comics; while private sales and auctions are still the best option for rare, collector's back issues. So no matter what kind of titles readers are looking for, chances are there's a mail-order comics option that fits.