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5 Things to Avoid When Creating an ebook

A little-known fact about ebook distribution is that each retail channel has their very own set of requirements. That means the retailer reviews the content of your ebook. And the ebook must meet their individual requirements before they will list it for sale. You must keep these requirements in mind when creating an ebook.

The requirements may sound scary at first, but they aren’t. To find our full list of requirements, read our Mandatory Ebook Distribution Requirements.

By following the requirements set by each retailer, your customers get the most robust experience from reading your work. Yes, there are a lot of requirements, but many of them are best practices for making an ebook. So let’s cover 5 requirements in particular to keep in mind when creating an ebook.

No description or description too short

Describing your work might be the most important step of all.  Not only does a book description double as a great marketing tool to get readers interested, it’s also used to catalogue your work in retail channels all over the world. For this step, you’ll provide details including category and genre, keywords, description, language, licensing and edition number. It’s crucial you provide consistent information here that matches any details you have already provided or stated in your book and on your cover. Many retailers require this information to be accurate to list your content and make sure it gets in front of the right readers.

“Metadata” mismatch

Metadata is the who, what, when, and where of your ebook.  Much like your ebook’s description, metadata includes items like your title, author name, volume number, price, etc. and are what most retailers use to list and categorize your content.  Metadata must perfectly match so that customers searching for your eBook in a catalogue can find it.

Up-selling or listing a price on your cover

You can adjust the price of your ebook at anytime and we encourage you to experiment with different prices competitive with other books in the same genre.  With that in mind, avoid listing the price of your eBook anywhere on the cover, in the description, or in the ebook itself so you can be flexible to change the price later if you need to.

Inappropriate or illegal content

This one is self-explanatory. You’ll fail approval if you plagiarize or infringe on another creator’s content. And the ebook you create needs to abide by Lulu’s Terms & Conditions, and the specific terms for the retailer. That may limit some adult content like erotica.

  • Non-English content – Unfortunately, we’re unable to distribute non-English ebooks. You can still create an ebook in another language and sell it on the Lulu bookstore though!

Poor image quality

You’ve probably come across a picture on the Internet that was hard to see no matter how much you zoomed in or reloaded the page.  Pixelated or blurry images won’t show up on today’s high resolution computers, tablets, phones and devices. This means they can’t go in your ebooks either.  If you include images when creating your ebook, we can only accept high-resolution, three color, RGB (red, green, blue) formatted pictures.  Four color, CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow, key black) images will not translate properly.


Team Lulu

Since 2002, Lulu has powered the knowledge-sharing economy by enabling creators in more than 225 countries and territories to publish over 2 million books. Lulu’s industry-leading tools and global network of print facilities provide creators with the resources to succeed on their terms.

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