Unless you are totally new to the internet, then you will have seen many references to ebooks. So what is an ebook? The simple explanation is this: - “an electronic book, generally in a pdf (sometimes html) format. Readable on a computer or other electronic devices, such as Kindle.”
Whether it’s written as ebook, e book or e-book, it means exactly the same thing. So e stands for electronic, and can be used as a prefix for any downloadable digital product. You have e-books, e-reports, e-goods, etc.
Something I’m asked about regularly, is what is the difference between an ebook,and a report? There is no absolute definition as to when a report becomes an ebook, so here is the usual rule of thumb that I use.
But an ebook is more than that….
An ebook (done properly, and with good marketing) can be an ongoing source of residual income. It can be an opportunity to bring in a good income stream, with little work needed beyond the initial setup. And what could be better than getting money coming into your Paypal or Clickbank account while you sleep?
Some Advantages of PDF
When a PDF is created it (generally ) contains the fonts embedded within it. Here’s what that means.
Suppose you visit a webpage online, and the font used is “Lucinda”. Now, to view the page using “Lucinda” font, you must have that installed on your computer. If you don’t, then your browser will use whatever the next specified font happens to be. And if you have none of the fonts specified on that webpage, then your browser will use its own default font.
Of course, that default font may be nothing like the one chosen for the webpage, so you may have a very different display than the webmaster intended. But a PDF will embed those fonts within the document.
This means the PDF is totally independent of the viewers computer, as far as fonts go: -it supplies its own.
Does My Ebook Have To Be A PDF?
PDF stands for Portable Document Format, and the big player with this software is of course Adobe™. Buying something like Acrobat Professional™ will set you back in the region of $500. That’s a lot of money to spend. Do you really need all the features offered with something like this? If you are intending on creating a downloadable ebook to sell on your website, then the answer is probably no. Sure, it will do a terrific job, and if you already have it, then there is no need to look any further for software.
However, you can get good software for a very low price (or even free) that will give you the same results. On this site, you will find reviews on free/cheap PDF software to help with choosing what’s right for you.
But back to the question, do you have to use PDF as your ebook format? No you don’t, but if you are serious about making the ebook accessible to the widest possible market, you would be wise to stick with this.
Creating your ebook in HTML format, using an HTML compilier may enable you to make the ebook look a little prettier. And you can add extra functionality that you can’t get with PDF (enhanced security measures for example). But many people just won’t download an exe because of the risk of a virus. Also, PDF is usable with pretty much any OS. It is the industry standard, people trust it, and nearly everyone can read it without having to install anything.
If you feel you have to use an HTML complier, then why not give people the option of which format they prefer? Give your customers the choice of downloading either the HTML or PDF version.