Just like that, we're almost halfway through 2019! As we look back on the year, we want to take a moment and celebrate some of the best and brightest ideas on the blog. The verdict is in—here are your top ten most viewed self-publishing blogs from IngramSpark in 2019!
These posts cover self-publishing topics from the technical details a self-publisher faces to questions about formats and ISBNs. We discuss changes in the self-publishing industry and look at timeless strategies for getting your books into bookstores. Whether you're new to the self-publishing world or a seasoned indie author, you’re sure to find something that interests you in one of these popular blog posts.
1. IngramSpark vs Amazon KDP
Writers are constantly asking us to explain the differences between IngramSpark and Amazon's self-publishing services; to tell you the truth, we don't mind! We love seeing you take every measure possible to educate yourself and make the most informed decision when it comes to publishing a book. Last year, with the news that Amazon would be folding its CreateSpace print on demand business into its Kindle Direct Publishing program, our client support team received countless questions from authors asking what the change meant. In this popular post, IngramSpark Director, Robin Cutler, clarifies the differences between the two self-publishing platforms—comparing print options, distribution, availability, and more. You don't want to miss this one.
2. How to Sell Your Self-Published Book to Bookstores
It makes us really happy to see this post in your favorites because we can’t emphasize enough the importance of being involved in your local book community. Your local independent bookstores (and libraries) are frequently the hub of your community’s literary landscape. They also hold incredible power when it comes to expanding your book’s reach because their limited shelf space and word-of-mouth recommendations are well-respected. IngramSpark is one of the only self-publishing platforms that makes your book available for purchase by independent bookstores, and we agree that it’s incredibly important that your book be available to these retailers. Read more for tips about how to get your book on their shelves or listen to our podcast episode about how to sell your book to independent bookstores.
3. File Requirements for Print Books
Without the technical details, you can’t publish a book. We’re thrilled that so many self-publishers take the time to get their files right before they publish. If you’re looking to self-publish a book via IngramSpark, this is the post for you!
4. How Much Should My Book Cost? Tips for Pricing Your Book
When you embark on the journey of getting a book published there’s a lot to consider and one of the things that should be on your priority list is how much you’ll be pricing your book for, which is a key piece of your book metadata. The editors of traditional publishing houses must fill out a profit and loss spreadsheet (P&L) before they can even acquire a book, let alone publish a book. The P&L accounts for decisions they’ll need to make in order to turn a profit on the book they hope to add to their list. One of the best places to start when determining the profit goals of your book publishing endeavors is to seriously consider how you'll be pricing your book.
5. How I Got My Indie Book on Barnes & Noble Shelves
Are you ready to get your indie book on to Barnes & Noble's bookshelves? The good news is that any book in the IngramSpark print-on-demand catalog can automatically be made available to Barnes & Noble’s customers through the Barnes & Noble website and (at Barnes & Noble's discretion) through customer special order requests in the stores. Kody Christiansen shares his story for getting his indie book onto Barnes & Noble's shelves, and IngramSpark shares tips for you to do the same!
6. ISBNs: International Standard Book Number Facts for Self-Publishers
ISBNs are required if you intend to sell your book. Any item you buy from a store has a product number associated with it to identify the item you're purchasing, and books are no different. Your ISBN is your product number and it's unique to your book and your book alone. Not only does it identify your book, it also identifies the specific format of your book, indicating whether it’s the paperback, hardcover, or ebook version. Lots of self-publishers have questions about ISBNs—if you’re one of them, be sure to check out this post. And if you're interested, we also cover this topic in a podcast episode specifically about ISBNs.
Take IngramSpark's Free Self-Publishing Course: Metadata for Books
7. Book Distribution with IngramSpark
After pouring your heart and soul into your book, it's not enough to just publish it and expect it to sell—you need to make it available for readers everywhere to buy. Book distribution can seem confusing at times, but it doesn't have to be. When you self-publish with IngramSpark, you have access to one of the publishing industry’s largest global print and ebook distribution networks, which makes opportunities to sell your books that much greater. Check out this post for more info on how to maximize your book sales through a global distribution network, or listen to our podcast episode about how to reach readers worldwide with global book distribution.
8. Tips for Starting a Publishing Business
One thing many indie authors come to terms with is that they’re not just publishing a book, they’re starting an author business. It's one thing to say you want to publish a book and become a published author, but another to actually do it. And with advancements in technology and resources, many people can publish a book, but it takes a bit extra to start your own book publishing business—and a successful one at that. Here's what you need to get your publisher business going.
9. How to Write a Good Book Description
Want to instantly capture readers? No matter who you are or what genre your book falls into—nothing beats getting engrossed in a book description that leaves a reader wanting more. Short and long book descriptions both serve a purpose—to make you and your book look good. Before you start writing, here are a few things you need to know.
10. The Ultimate Book Marketing Timeline for Indie Authors
With so many book marketing strategies available to promote your book, it's easy to get overwhelmed and have difficulty determining what to do and when to do it to give your book the best chance. Marketing a book is a complex part of the overall publishing process and takes proper planning. This book marketing timeline for indie authors is designed for the author who is just about to begin writing, however since all these strategies are important, you can begin to address each one no matter where you are in your publishing process.