IngramSpark vs. CreateSpace: When Color Printing and Hardcover Editions Are Important

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IngramSpark vs. CreateSpace: When Color Printing and Hardcover Editions Are Important

IngramSpark vs. CreateSpace: When Color Printing and Hardcover Editions Are ImportantCreateSpace as a POD option for indie publishers is a great solution except when you need a color interior or hardcover edition. Color printing is usually cost prohibitive and CreateSpace just doesn’t offer a hardcover printing option. If this is you then a good solution to consider is IngramSpark, an author-friendly self-service option from book distributor Ingram Content Group.

(By the way, Ingram is also the parent of Lightning Source, a service Ingram positions as ideal for medium and large publishers.)

Here is a quick primer on these two important printing requirements.

Color Printing Comparison

Let’s look at two examples:

8.5”x8.5”, 24 pages, Paperback
  • CreateSpace cost for 1 copy, no shipping: $3.65
  • IngramSpark cost for 1 copy, no shipping: $1.80
 7”x10”, 380 pages, Paperback
  • CreateSpace cost for 1 copy, no shipping: $27.45
  • IngramSpark cost for 1 copy, no shipping: $11.43

Note: to get an accurate comparison you also need to look at handing fees, shipping fees and quantity discounts. Use these calculators to do that:

Hardback Printing

In this case there is no comparison because hardcovers are not available from CreateSpace. But to give you an idea of the difference between soft and hardcovers, the 7”x10” book noted above would cost $15.66 as a hardback vs. $11.43 as a paperback. The smaller 24 page example noted above would be $5.94 for color hardback vs. $1.80 for a color paperback.

You can use the same IngramSpark printing and shipping calculator to get hardback pricing.

Notable IngramSpark requirements

  • You must have your own ISBN (see my post here)
  • There is a setup charge but it is waived if you order 50 books in one shipment.

Other Considerations

There are many other considerations such as submission requirements, trim size, delivery times and distribution options, not to mention the previously discussed setup fees, shipping costs, handling charges and quantity discount options. But if color and/or hardback editions are critical, you don’t have many other reputable POD options.

Need help? We can manage the entire print-on-demand process for your book, helping you choose the option and approach that's best for your project. Contact us here.

photo credit: Horia Varlan via photopin cc

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