The purpose of the International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is to coordinate, standardize, and uniquely identify one publication (or edition) published by one specific publisher in one specific format. The system is recognized and used in over 160 countries.

Why do I need to assign an ISBN to my book?

  • If you want to sell your book on Amazon it must include an ISBN
  • The ISBN is a unique, internationally recognized identifier of your published work
  • ISBNs differentiate between product formats (hardcover, paperback, eBook)

Can I get an ISBN for a Print On Demand (POD) publication?

  • Yes. POD is just another method of printing books. If you wish to sell your book on Amazon your book must be assigned an ISBN

Does a book I create for my own personal use or for a very limited audience such as my family and friends require an ISBN?

  • No

I want to create and publish a monthly magazine. Do I need a new ISBN for each edition?

  • No. Publications that are intended by the publisher to be regularly updated or continued indefinitely (such as journals, magazines, newspapers, or websites) don’t need an ISBN

What information about my book is associated with the ISBN?

  • Your book’s Format (hardcover, paperback, eBook, etc. including dimensions), Title, Author, Contributor(s), Edition, Language, Publisher or Imprint, Country of Publication, and Publication Date are associated with the assigned ISBN. If you use a free POD ISBN, that company will automatically register the above information as part of the Distribution process

Will Publish & Print provide me with an ISBN?

  • Yes, we will sort this out with the POD company we use for your book

If I edit a previously published book, do I need a new ISBN?

A new ISBN is required when:

  • You make significant changes to any part or parts of a published work, such as adding, moving, or removing blocks of text and/or chapters
  • You change the title or subtitle of a previously published work
  • You substantially change the cover design (to the extent that customers would view your book as a new product)
  • You create and publish your work in a new product format (hardcover, paperback, eBook, audio book, etc.)
  • You create and publish your work in a new trim size (change the book’s dimensions)
  • You create and publish an eBook in a different file format such as EPUB or MOBI
  • You publish with another publisher or under a new imprint
  • You issue a translated version of your published work

You do NOT need a new ISBN when:

  • You change the price
  • You make minor corrections (spelling, grammar, typos) to an existing edition
  • You make minor changes to the cover design of a newly published work or the change is intended to provide a marketing boost

What about ebooks?

  • ebooks don’t require an ISBN

Important Note: Publish & Print uses a POD company that only offers retail distribution services for print books created in Latin character sets and eBooks written in English.

4 thoughts on “ISBN

  • 23/11/2014 at 8:13 pm


    Could you tell me which package my poems will fit in. I would like to publish about 30 pages of my poems in A5 including illustration (idea of illustraton from me, but designing from you). Cost for a book with hard cover and a paperback format. I would like a copy for myself and then order copies of them at a later time. How much would that cost me? What if I decide to sell it in Amazon at the same time when I get my first copy? Does it belong to the catagory package 2

    Looking forward to hear from you.


  • 15/01/2017 at 11:40 pm

    Hi Dave,
    I’d like to publish a poetry collection in A5. I have a word file with a title page, contents page and 46 poems. No poem exceeds one page. I’m interested in the more professional cover at extra cost and would like something similar to The Leviathan’s Apprentice design but not too concerned about the exact design as long as it looks professional. Do I need to leave a gap page for copyright and ISBN before sending or do I leave that to you? I’d also like to use a pseudonym if that’s not a problem.

    • 17/01/2017 at 11:12 am

      Hi John
      Thanks for enquiry, I’ve emailed you.
      Thanks Dave


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