What Is Digital Book Publishing: Everything You Should Know

Did you know that the first electronic book dates back to 1971?

That’s when the US Declaration of Independence was digitized by Project Gutenberg. Ever since, there appeared different variations of digital books, not only ebooks. We’ll cover them all in this article.

The market of digital books saw a massive rise in 2020. In fact, it was for the first time when their sales surpassed those of printed copies. In the United States, for example, online book sales accounted for 71.2% of total book sales, as of 2020.

What else is worth knowing about digital book publishing?

Dive into this comprehensive guide. You’ll also discover how to publish digital books and get them successfully promoted and sold on the web. Cover photo by Martin Adams.

Digital Book Publishing: Definition, Types, and Benefits

Let’s stop here and see what digitally published books can look like and why they are beneficial for publishers.

What’s Digital Book Publishing?

Digital or online book publishing is the process of distributing your book content digitally via different channels.

When we talk about “a digital book”, we usually mean an ebook. However, it’s not the only option, when it comes to digital publishing.

There are three basic types of digital books: ebooks, audiobooks, and video books.

  • Ebook

An ebook is the most commonly known type of online book. It comes in various formats, majorly in PDF, EPUB, or MOBI.

Check this ebook by Bella Beauty College.

Bella Beauty College ebook for becoming your own boss


  • Audiobook

In 1995, Audible became a pioneer in digital audiobooks making them available for download on digital devices.

Here’s an example of the audiobook How Two: Have a Successful Relationship by Phil and Maude Mayes who share a weekly relationship newsletter on their blog.

first audiobooks from audible


  • Video book (aka vbook)

A vbook is a relatively new concept and a great replacement for text-heavy ebooks. “Video books are the new ebooks”, as Hannah Cameron, Content Marketing Manager at Vidyard, puts it.

There are such services as LITvideobooks, for instance, where people can watch vbooks.

Businesses also create vbooks in the form of educational videos for their customers. E.g., Art Nouveau Studio shares a list of video books on how they craft products and join sustainable fashion revolution.


  • Flip Book (or flipbooks)

Flip book is another newer format that redefined the interactive reading experience by seamlessly merging traditional print with digital innovation. Unlike static PDFs or traditional e-books, digital flipbooks replicate the experience of flipping through pages, complete with animations and sound effects, all on a digital platform.

This format has found favor with a range of audiences, from businesses aiming to transform their catalogs and brochures into interactive online experiences to educators creating engaging course materials, to authors and artists seeking a fresh medium for their narratives and portfolios. Among the frontrunners in this digital transformation is Publuu, an online service that allows creators to craft and share dynamic flipbooks with audiences worldwide. Many businesses are turning to Publuu to digitally recreate their catalogs, brochures, and magazines, offering readers an immersive browsing experience.

flip book digital book experience


Why Publish Your Books Online?

More and more business leaders and authors switch from printed books to digital ones, because the latter offer some valuable advantages:

  • Immersive consumer experience
  • Higher audience engagement
  • Broader reach
  • Easier book creation, editing, and distribution analysis
  • Cost-efficiency
  • Saved time and resources
  • Competitiveness on the market

Ebooks, for example, are the key elements in any content marketing plan.

With these benefits in mind, it’s now time to learn how to get your digital book published. Read on.

7 Actionable Tips for Publishing Digital Books

  1. Polish your content to perfection

“Whether it’s an electronic book, video book, or audiobook, you should give your content a thorough check before publication,” recommends Carson Lang, Co-Founder and COO of Test Prep Insight.

“It will help you eliminate all the possible errors and deliver the best digital content to your audience. To do a proper revision, use the following checklist: typical flaws (logical fallacy, repetition, contradiction, or missed data), fact-checking, punctuation, spelling, grammar, stylistics, formatting, visuals and/or sound,” he shares.

You may also take advantage of such proofreading and editing software as PDF Reader Pro, Grammarly, Wordy, and the like.

  1. Craft a compelling cover

The role of design in engagement marketing has been evolving through years. Now, it’s even more important for businesses than ever before.

How can you make your cover design stand out and lure consumers to buy?

85% of shoppers confess that color is the primary factor that makes them purchase a product.

Marketing professionals often pick red for their color palette, since it has a strong ability to capture people’s attention instantly. Check some examples of captivating red cover books to spark inspiration for your design.

Some other gimmicks in book jacket design are:

  • Emotional triggers (action or vibrant colors like orange, blue, bright green, purple)
  • Fonts (in fiction, for example, an industrial font is great for dystopian stories, while a curly font with decorations – for romances)
  • Subtitles, taglines, or teasing phrases that evoke the desire to read more
  • Minimalism
  • Uniqueness and personalization

As for the latter, that’s when personal branding comes into play. It’s particularly significant for businesses to maintain brand visibility and recognition. You should make an emphasis on your brand name and logo, in the first place. TheyDo, for example, placed both on their ebook cover. The company also mentioned the link to their website.

personal branding journey


You might also want to test various designs with your audience before choosing the most appealing one for your online book cover.

  1. Use tools for creating digital books

Grab the following content creation tools for publishers that help automate and speed up the process.

For ebooks:

  • Atticus
  • Designrr.io
  • Kindle Create
  • Venngage 
  • Publuu

For audiobooks:

  • Audiobook Maker
  • Revoicer
  • Fliki.ai
  • Narakeet
  • Podcastle.ai

For video books:

  • Synthesia.io
  • Animoto
  • Vimeo Create
  • Rawshorts 
  • Wideo.co

  1. Optimize your online book description for SEO

According to Morgan Taylor, Co-Founder of Jolly SEO, “You can make your ebook more discoverable with targeted keywords in the description. These are the words and phrases that your ideal buyers type in search engines when they look for digital content. They will help you get your work in front of your intended readers and improve your ebook sales.

When selecting relevant keywords, avoid repetition and keyword stuffing. Instead, try to use synonymous phrases or variants of the same keyword.”

For example, take a look at this ebook description of Digital Zine Edition I: NYC Commuter Stories, one of FilterGrade’s best sellers.

digital zine seo description example

It’s packed with the following keywords: digital commuter stories, stories of commuters, NYC commuter story, commuting, photos from New York City, and more.

In case you go with Amazon’s ebook publishing platform Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP), you can use these two extensions for Chrome: Amazon & KDP keyword research tool and AMZ Suggestion Expander.

Don’t forget about the keywords for local SEO specifically.

  1. Set the price

“For setting an appropriate price for your digital book, the first thing to do is to analyze the prices in your market and genre,” Shawn Plummer, CEO at The Annuity Expert.

“Next, you need to evaluate how much you invested into digital book production and what quality you deliver. If it’s just a rewritten material that can be found elsewhere, the cost might be a bit lower. If it can boast of freshness and exclusiveness, the cost should be definitely higher.

It’s also necessary to take into consideration the length of your digital copy and demand for such content type,” he says.

The average price range for ebooks, for example, is between $3 and $10. As for an audiobook edition, it’s $10–$25, depending on the length, of course.

  1. Announce the upcoming release

It’s crucial to warm up your audience and let them know that your online book is on the way.

Heed the call from Ken Savage, Owner at Ken Savage, and “Start a pre-launch campaign for your digital book a month or two before publishing. It will maximize the efficacy of your product release.

The easiest and foolproof way is to generate buzz around it on social platforms. Social media channels can help you gather pre-orders, achieve word-of-mouth, and generate future sales.”


Jianhui Lu, aka @Lokinfey, AI Engineer and Microsoft Cloud Advocate, announced his new ebook on Twitter approximately a month before its actual release. The tweet generated thousands of views + likes, retweets, and bookmarks.

new ebook marketing techniques


One more example:

Megan Chapman, creator of The Savvy VA, also harnessed the power of social media marketing to pre-launch her ebook How to Increase Sales and Save Time.

saavy va


She also promised a discount code for early birds and an exclusive offer just for her Instagram followers.

  1. Promote your product everywhere


“Your website is the number one place where you should showcase your digital books,” claims Ryan Hammill, Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Ancient Language Institute.

“You can mention them right on the homepage, discuss them on your blog, and create separate landing pages for each. Besides, consider opening an online book store on your site.”

The Ancient Language Institute, for example, has a Latin bookshop on the website with a collection of Latin books and Latin translations of famous books with links to purchase them from Bookshop.org and Amazon.

old books


You may also tease your website visitors with a free ebook chapter and grow your email subscribers simultaneously. Just like David Jacobson does with his ebook Highly Humorous Leadership.

grow email subscribers optin


Social Media

If you’re planning to go social, you might need to create a highly-converting book promo.

Here’s a snapshot of the video promotion by Ian Kane for his second novel in the Fading Empires series. The author shares reviews from readers and provides a sneak peek into the first chapter.

novel snapshot


Why not allow your audience to get a “behind the scene” look of digital book creation?

Jessica Gioglio, for example, shares the behind-the-scenes of audiobook recording on YouTube and gives the link to The Laws Of Brand Storytelling right away in the video description.

behind the scenes of audiobook recording process


Online platforms

FilterGrade is one of the top places to promote digital products. More than 100,000 people visit the platform on a monthly basis. Aside from sharing your works via social media and email newsletter, it can offer you an individual promotion plan with creative ways to market your digital titles.

Ready to Publish Your Digital Book?

Bringing your online book to market is one thing. Quite another is promoting and selling it.

This article has given you some actionable tips to do both.

After a successful publication online, you can distribute your digital copies worldwide with FilterGrade, a digital marketplace for creators.

List your digital products on FilterGrade, view sales reports, and earn high commissions on every sale!

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