Getting your eBooks into the iBookstore will get you exposure to a wide audience on Apple devices. Your book will be available to people on both PC computers and Macs as well as people on iPhones and iPads.
In order to submit your own eBook to iBooks, you’ll need a Mac running at least 1G of RAM with QuickTime 7.03 installed. Unfortunately, you cannot do this on a Windows computer.
That said, if you’re on a Windows computer, you can use one of the many third party Apple aggregators to help take care of the process. They’ll take care of just about everything for you, though you’ll have to pay a premium for the service.
If you want to do it on your own, you’ll also need a U.S. Tax ID. Anyone can get a Tax ID by filing for a DBA / Sole Proprietor business in the United States. You don’t even need to be a U.S. resident.
Once you have all the requirements, here’s how to get started with publishing your eBook on iBooks.
Step 1: Get Your ISBN Number
In order to publish your book on iBooks, you’ll need an ISBN number. This number is like a calling card for your book. It allows bookstores like the iBookstore to track exactly how many books were sold and it also allows you to track your statistics.
Any book sold in a regular bookstore needs an ISBN number. While some online stores don’t require this, iBooks does. To get your ISBN number, go to:
When you arrive, you’ll see the page below. Click “Get Your ISBN Today!” to start.
Step 2: Get the Basic Version
While there are several different versions of the ISBN service available, the most important thing is that you get the number. For our purposes, the most basic package is usually enough.
Step 3: Checkout
Continue to checkout and follow the on screen instructions to complete the purchase of your ISBN number.
Step 4: Install an ePub Conversion Application
In order to submit your eBook to iBooks, you need to convert it to the ePub file format. There are several programs that can do this.
Calibre and Sigil are two free options. iStudio Publisher ($49.99) and Adobe InDesign ($699) are two paid options.
For the purposes of this guide, we’ll use Calibre’s free converter to create our ePub file.
Download Calibre from:
Install the software and continue.
Step 5: Add Your Books
Once you open Calibre, you’ll be presented with a screen with a variety of options. A good way to acquaint yourself with the interface is to just hover your mouse over various areas and see what each button is.
To get started, click “Add Books” in the upper left corner. Select the book(s) you want to convert into ePub file format to add it to the list of titles in Calibre.
Step 6: Change the Meta Data
Your meta data is data that comes with the ePub file that tells the book reader basic information like who wrote it, the title, the ISBN number and so on.
Highlight the book whose data you want to change. Then click on the “Edit Meta Data” button.
You’ll then be taken to the edit meta data screen, as shown below:
Input as much of the data as you can. Add in your front cover image. This is the image that will be shown to people browsing the iBookstore.
On the right you can add comments. You can leave this blank for now.
Click OK when you’re finished.
Step 7: Save Your ePub Book
When you’re ready to export your ePub file, click on the “Save Book” button.
You’ll then be taken to the save page, which gives you a ton of options.
The best way to play with these options is to just save your file and see how it looks afterwards. You can choose how text display looks, how your table of contents are structured and a whole lot more options.
The only critical thing you need to select is the Output Format. Make sure it’s set to EPUB before you hit OK.
Once you save your file, you’ll have a file that’s ready to be submitted to the iBookstore!
Step 8: Submit to iBooks
To submit your ebook, go to iTunes connect at:
Select “Books” from the dropdown menu and click continue.
You’ll then be walked through a series of steps to upload your ePub file and submit it to iTunes. Follow the on screen instructions.
That’s all there is to it! Setting up your Tax ID, getting an ISBN number and converting your file may be a bit of hassle at first, but getting your eBook onto the iBookstore will make your effort well worth it.