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To ISBN or Not ISBN Your E-book

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Published hard-copy books have a unique International Standard Book Number (ISBN) to identify the title and author in a world-wide digital system.  The ISBN number is not yet a requirement for e-books everywhere, however. My subject here is whether to ISBN or not ISBN your e-book, and why.

Kristen Eckstein shares five basic conditions that should push you in the direction of obtaining an ISBN from Bowker for your e-book, IF:

“1) You want your eBook to be listed in your own publishing company’s name.

2)  You want to sell your eBook with multiple retailers.

isbn on info marketing ebooks

Info Marketing Ebook and ISBN

3) You want your eBook’s title to rank higher on Google.

4) You want to make sure you get paid for eBook sales that are rightfully yours.

5) You live in a country that requires an ISBN for eBook formats.”

Since ISBN numbers can be purchased in blocks of 10 for $250 at this time, according to Eckstein, the cost of each one is a very reasonable $25, representing a very small investment in your information marketing business.

I think the most important reason Eckstein shared in her blog post was this – “Purchasing ISBNs gives you the ability to list your book in Bowker’s Books in Print database, which is licensed to search engines like Google. If your eBook is not included in the Books in Print database, it may not show up in internet search results.”

Bingo. That one is reason enough for me. If my e-book is not going to show up in databases for book stores and customers to find it on their own, I might as well not even write it in the first place.

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