These are the most reasonably priced type of shotguns. You can get single-shot models under $100 from some manufacturers as well; apparently, this is another category which first-timers explore when buying a shotgun. Besides the economy price point, these guns are highly reliable and accurate as well.
The main drawback here is that the shooters get only one try to load the gun. The user is required to open the breech, throw out the empty shell, and then reload manually; this has to be done every time when firing a shot which means that it takes more time to fire the follow-up shots which can be a serious matter of concern in a self-defense situation. While great for the novice or intermediate shotgun owner looking for a low price-point shotgun, it may prove impractical besides skeet shooting.
Over/Under and Side-by-Side Shotguns
These types of shotguns feature two barrels each. The most prominent benefit here is that the shotgun can have different sized chokes in each of the barrels. Chokes adjust the pattern of shooting which can give you better accuracy and speed when hunting or training. Moreover, follow-up shots are very quick as well when it comes to double barrel shotguns, adding to their reliability. The only disadvantage here is that as the shotgun employs a breech-loading method, the user gets only two shots in one go.
Most manufacturers sell double barrel shotguns in the over-and-under configuration these days, instead of the old side-by-side types. However, the operation and mechanism of both remain the same. Some models even come with high-quality wood and ornate designs which add to the cost of the shotgun. Besides, these are more of the hunting and trap-shooting type, and might not suit basic home defense needs.
These shotguns are usually used for deer hunting only. In some states of the U.S., the law prevents residents from using rifles for game hunting. In such cases, a bolt-action shotgun can do the job. These guns come with threaded barrels which allow the user to shoot longer distances with better accuracy. However, as this type of shotguns usually has a slower bolt-action mechanism, they are not fitting for other purposes like training and self-defense.