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IngramSpark Ebook Conversion

Monday, December 17, 2018

Considering converting your print book into an ebook? Offering your book in multiple formats is one of the easiest ways to reach more readers. While some readers prefer to read in print, some prefer to read ebooks only. Not offering your book in ebook format, is a guarantee your content will never reach them, so why limit your book's distribution?

IngramSpark Ebook Distribution

Self-publishing your ebook with IngramSpark gives you unprecedented access to one of the world's largest online book distribution networks. Ingram’s online retail partners have access to listing your ebook on their website for readers to purchase. The best part about using IngramSpark for both your print and ebook publishing and distribution is that you can manage all formats of your book from one platform and know that you're reaching all of the places readers expect to find your book.

View IngramSpark Online Retail Partners  

IngramSpark EPUB Guidelines

In order to ensure that readers can download and read your ebook, your EPUB file needs to meet certain criteria before being uploaded to IngramSpark. 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 to be used for display on retailer websites. We provide guidelines regarding our EPUB recommendations and specifications, but have included the most important ones below. If properly formatting your ebook isn't your strong suit, we also offer an ebook conversion service that allows you to skip the formatting specifications, and we'll take care of it for you.

Use IngramSpark’s Ebook Conversion Service for a Compliant Ebook File without the Hassle

IngramSpark Ebook Cover Specs (High-res JPG)

  • File: must contain front cover 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

IngramSpark Ebook Interior Specs (EPUB)

  • Size: 100MB or less
  • Format: Must be EPUB Check 3.0.0 compliant. IngramSpark 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 in the same size, and as part of your interior. (For use within the book content.)
  • Be sure the book metadata entered in IngramSpark matches the information on your book cover. For example, if the cover art is for a book titled Paradiso, but the book 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 ebook will never look just like your print book. E-readers are limited in how they display content and your book will appear different from device to device.

Skip the Specs and Use IngramSpark’s Ebook Conversion Service Instead


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 ebook 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). It is designed for reflowable content, meaning an EPUB reader can optimize text for a particular display device.

Different Types of EPUBs

Fixed Layout EPUBs

Fixed layout, which 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 format.

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. This approach may also be necessary if there is a contractual obligation to replicate the printed work.

In many cases, using fixed layout, but not replicating the print design can be a good solution. For example, 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, fixed layout should not be considered the automatic default for converting these types of books. Often, because we are so familiar with (and attached to) the print format, we cling to fixed layout when a reflowable digital product might be more appropriate.

Reflowable EPUBs

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 users 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.

What Will an Ebook Version of My Book 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 overall look is the same, but each reader tries to render the file the way it sees fit. Because of this, you will notice subtle differences in the way they look.

The good news is this is okay! The ebook version does not have to match the print version exactly. With ebooks, the end-user controls the experience with zoom, enlarged print, etc.

EPUB Conversion Service

Many publishers take advantage of the EPUB conversion service offered through IngramSpark. For a limited time, 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 and you are satisfied with the content in your print file. IngramSpark conversions ensure your newly created EPUB will validate to the latest standards.


Use IngramSpark's EPUB Conversion Service

IngramSpark Staff

IngramSpark® is an award-winning independent publishing platform, offering indie authors and publishers the ability to create, manage, and globally distribute print and ebooks.