The best reason for using either CreateSpace or IngramSpark is you have a built-in distribution network with both services. CreateSpace is a direct market to Amazon and IngramSpark is a market to Amazon and other book retailers. We typically do not recommend using CreateSpace’s Expanded Distribution. The wholesale discount is so high that you will need to price your book at a high price in order to make any money.
If you choose a printer that does not have a built-in distribution network, you need to figure out how you are going to distribute your book. Are you going to offer it for sale on your own website and handle the fulfillment yourself? Or, are you going to use a service, such as Amazon Advantage?
When deciding which printer to use, take a look at your goal and budget.
Just a few books, please.
If your goal is to leave a legacy behind and you only want a few books printed for your family members or friends, go with CreateSpace. They provide an ISBN and you can choose not to publish your book on Amazon and only order books to have shipped to you directly from CreateSpace.
I will order and sell/give away books myself.
If the goal of your book is a marketing tool for business and you plan on giving away or having the books for sale at certain functions, CreateSpace or IngramSpark are both good options.
I have a limited budget.
No matter what your goal is, if you have a small budget, your best option is CreateSpace. They do not charge title setup fees, book printing prices are cheaper, and they provide ISBNs.
I plan to sell a large volume of books.
If you know you will be able to sell a large volume of books, then IngramSpark will be your best option. You are offered a larger distribution network with a lower wholesale discount. You can offer a wholesale discount at 30% with IngramSpark. For the same distribution on CreateSpace, the wholesale discount is 60%.
I want to make money and have the book available everywhere.
If your goal is to make money and have your book available everywhere possible, using a CreateSpace and IngramSpark combination is what we recommend. Set up your book on CreateSpace using their Standard Distribution (not Expanded!) using your own ISBN and then use IngramSpark for their global book distribution using the same ISBN.
I need a high-quality book printed.
If your book demands high-quality, such as a photography book, going with an offset printer will be your best option. You will then need to figure out distribution options.
A word on quality. In our opinion, CreateSpace and IngramSpark books are equal in quality and are comparable to most novels and nonfiction books on the market. You can order samples from both companies to compare for yourself.
Still confused? Jera Publishing can help you decide what path you should take. View our consulting services.
* This post is part of the Author Toolbox Blog Hop.
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