The following article contains all the information available about the ebook services we offer as well as file requirements and compensation payments for ebooks sold through retailers' websites.
Self-publishing your ebook with IngramSpark gives you unprecedented access to one of the world's largest online distribution networks. Any of Ingram’s online retail partners would have access to listing your ebook on their website for customers to purchase. A complete list of partners can be found here.
10/27/2020 UPDATE: New ebook channels have been added to the Global Print and Ebook Agreement to now include subscriptions, libraries, and more! This means your ebooks will be available in more places and in more ways, including lending services who haven’t previously been able to receive books from IngramSpark. The specifics of each of these new ebook channels are linked from within the new agreement and can also be accessed HERE. These new channels will be activated on 1/28/2021.
- If you have provided any e-books to Amazon for the Kindle in the past 12 months we will not be able to provide service to Kindle through the IngramSpark program. If it's been at least 12 months since you uploaded any ebook titles to Kindle on your own, you can use IngramSpark to supply your ebooks to Kindle by accepting and signing the Amazon agreement.
- If you currently have e-book content available on Apple, you will need to remove those e-books from the iBook store prior to uploading those same titles into IngramSpark. Also, note that any reviews or ratings of that content will not transfer when your titles reappear in the iBook store.
*Fixed layout ePubs will only be available on Apple, Kobo, and Libreka. Barnes and Noble will accept fixed layout EPUBs for children's books only.
In order to ensure that customers will be able to download and read your ebook, your ePub file needs to meet certain criteria. We provide guidelines that should answer any questions you may have regarding our ePub recommendations and specifications.
IngramSpark requires an ePub file for your book’s interior and a high-resolution JPG cover image. This needs to be the front image of your cover as it will be used for display on retailer websites.
Why does IngramSpark require an EPUB file?
Each of our major ebook retail partners has unique file requirements. A valid ePub, created with our outlined specifications, enables us to satisfy the requirements of each partner, getting your e-book where it belongs—on every device.
The majority of e-retailers will not sell PDF files in their eBook stores. The ePub format is the official standard of the IDPF (International Digital Publishing Forum) and is designed for reflowable content, meaning an EPUB reader can optimize text for a particular display device.
Can’t you just use my PDF?
Most e-retailers will not sell PDF files in their e-book stores. The EPUB format is the official standard of the IDPF (International Digital Publishing Forum) and is designed for reflowable content, meaning an EPUB reader can optimize text for a particular display device.
Not all EPUBS are created alike. Most conversion services, particularly the free ones, have disclaimers that their conversion services are not suitable for a production environment. We highly encourage you to verify that the files created at each site will be suitable for a production or manufacturing environment and not for personal use only.
Yes, we recommend running your file through https://www.pagina.gmbh/produkte/epub-checker/ You will have to download the app but it is supported by PC, Mac, and Linux.
eBook File Creation Requirements
COVER (High-res JPG) File Requirements
- The file must contain a front cover image only
- Format: Must be a JPG file
- Size: 2560 pixels on the longest side, 1600 pixels on the shortest side (350 dpi)
- Color: All front covers must be RGB
- The content of the cover image must not infringe another publisher’s or artist’s copyright on the same cover
INTERIOR (EPUB) File Requirements
Size: 100MB or less. Please note, while IngramSpark and retail sites can accept 100MB files, the IDPF Validator cannot check files over 10MB due to the amount of time it would take.
Format: Must be EPUB 3.0.0 compliant. We cannot accept enhanced EPUB 3 files at this time.
No single image inside an ePub can be greater than 3.2 million pixels. (Total pixels = length in pixels X width in pixels).
Include an internal cover image. This should be formatted the same size as, and as part of your interior. (For use within the book content.)
Be sure the metadata entered in IngramSpark matches the information on your cover. For example, if the cover art and the book asset are for a book titled Paradiso, but the metadata is for Purgatorio, then the items do not match.
There should not be any reference to page numbers in the book. This includes the Table of Contents. Your e-book will never look just like your print book. E-readers are limited in the way they display content and your book will appear different from device to device.
Fixed Layout ePubs
A fixed layout that exactly replicates the print design is almost always appropriate for Children’s picture books, Manga, Comics, and Graphic novels. These books have art created at a particular aspect ratio, and almost always need the entire page to bleed. Retailers are moving toward consistent support for these types of books, and there has been good consumer acceptance of these genres in eBook form.
Print-replica fixed layout may be appropriate for heavily designed and illustrated titles that are more difficult to reinvent as reflowable content. In such cases, the placement of text and related tables, illustrations, sidebars, etc., is essential for maintaining the sense of the text or the story. Illustrated textbooks and full-bleed art books are a few examples of the types of books that lend themselves to fixed-layout format because of design issues. This approach may also be necessary if there is a contractual obligation to replicate the printed work.
In many cases, using a fixed layout, but not replicating the print design, maybe a good solution. Text can be set in a bigger font, and the design can be optimized to avoid pinching and zooming on smaller screens. This approach can work well for cookbooks, gift books, and art books
However, the fixed layout should not be considered the automatic default for the conversion of these types of products. Often, because we are so familiar with (and attached to) the print format, we cling to the fixed layout when a reflowable digital product might be more appropriate.
**Fixed layout ePubs are not reflowable Fixed layout ePubs will only be available on Apple, Kobo, and Libreka. Barnes and Noble accept fixed layout EPUBs for children's books only.
Reflowable ebooks have the widest distribution opportunity in the marketplace.
Most ebooks are reflowable. Books with black & white text and little or no images are the best candidates for a reflowable epub file type. As an alternative to fixed layout, there are creative ways of designing reflowable digital books for complex titles like cookbooks and art books. Consultation with editors and designers may be required if content needs to be reconfigured—for example, sidebars will need to be anchored to a particular text, or original art may need to be redesigned to work in a single-column configuration.
Also, reflowable ebooks allow the user to search text, change the font style, and change the font size. For this reason, it's the most common and most preferred file type.
There are e-retailer specific requirements IDPF doesn’t check for built into IngramSpark to lessen the chance of rejection later in the process.
The IDPF EPUB Validator does not check to see if images have more than 3.2 million pixels, as it’s not wrong. Because this is something required by our e-retail partners, it was built into the IngramSpark requirements on the front end. Therefore, it is possible to pass IDPF validation, but still get rejected by IngramSpark
What will my eBook look like?
Your ebook will never look exactly like your print book, due to the nature of ebook readers (Kindle, Nook, iPad, etc) and the ePub file itself. This is why we do not provide eproofs for ebooks. The image below illustrates the same file shown on multiple devices or apps. The overall look is the same, but each reader tries to render the file the way it sees fit. Because of this, you will see subtle differences in the way they look.
The good news is this is okay. The ebook does not have to match the print title exactly, as no matter how hard you try to mirror the print title, within 30 seconds of purchase the reader can change it so much you wouldn't recognize your own title. The end-user controls the experience.
ePub Conversion Services
Many publishers take advantage of the ePub conversion service offered through IngramSpark. The conversion charge is $0.60 per page and takes about 15 business days to complete. We can convert your print PDF files to an ePub file once your print title is in production on your IngramSpark account. IngramSpark Conversions will ensure your newly created ePUB will validate to the latest standards.
The following is a list of languages that can be converted:
All the Indian languages
We are not able to convert reverse bound titles.
**Please note that once the conversion is complete, any editorial changes would need to be made to the file by you and would be subject to a revision fee. We recommend only requesting the conversion once you are satisfied with your content in your print file.
When using our ebook conversion service, enter the promo code FREEEBOOK to waive the $25 setup fee.
A Note on Using a Third-Party EPUB Provider
We highly encourage you to verify that the files created by a third-party will be suitable for a production or manufacturing environment and not for personal use only.
One way to tell if your file is valid before uploading to IngramSpark is by running your file through IDPF’s free ePub Validator (http://validator.idpf.org/). Be aware, this tool only accepts files up to 10 MB. Also, note there are e-retailer specific requirements IDPF does not check.
Images are required to have no more than 3.2 million pixels, which is built into the IngramSpark quality check but not addressed by IDPF. Therefore, it may be possible to pass IDPF validation, but still, get rejected by IngramSpark.
eBook Sales Reporting and Compensation
- IngramSpark accounts that were activated prior to October 27, 2020, currently receive the following compensation payments for eBook sales: 40% of the list price of your ebook. If you opted out of the Amazon agreement, compensation is paid at 45% of the list price. Effective 1/28/2021, publishers will receive 85% of the net revenue received by IngramSpark for every sale of your ebook(s) no matter who the retailer is.
- IngramSpark accounts that were activated on or after October 27, 2020, receive 85% of the net revenue received by IngramSpark for every sale of your ebook(s) no matter who the retailer is.
eBook retailers have 25 days after month end to report eBook sales to Ingram. For this reason, the sales report you receive will be for sales 60 days prior. See the chart below for the payment schedule.
A separate report is generated for Apple (Agency) ebook sales. If your ebook sold at Apple and any other ebook retailer, you will receive two separate reports.
If there were no ebook sales, you will not receive a compensation report email.
Monthly sales reports will be emailed within five (5) business days of our accounting month-end. Payments are made to the publisher, via direct deposit or PayPal, 90 days from the end of the month in which the sales are reported.