Book Cover Dimensions: A Comprehensive Guide2021-06-17T06:00:57+00:00
In the grand scheme of everything that we talk about regarding the design of book covers, we seldom talk about the dimension of the same. All we talk about is its coloration, how images are used and even the typography on the cover.
However, what we should also be considering is the dimension of the cover.
In this post, we are going to discuss the standard book cover dimensions.
Dimensions for book cover
Before exploring the process of choosing the dimensions, it is important that you know about the standard book cover dimensions available in the market for different types.
Take a look;
The standard size for Kindle Direct Publishing is 2,560 px * 1,600 px at 1.6:1 aspect ratio.
For non-fiction and novels, the size is 2,800 px * 3,920 px if the aspect ratio is 1.4:1; and with the aspect ratio of 1.2:1, the size is going to be 3,000px * 3,600px.
For Audio books, the size must be 3,200px* 3,200px at the aspect ratio of 1:1.
We understand that these numbers can become extremely confusing for you. But as we go on explaining more details about the book cover layouts and dimensions, you will be able to understand them better and make complete sense of it.
How to Choose the Size and Shape of the Cover of your eBook
If you consider the most popular eBook readers such as Kindle, iPad, and Nook simple, they all come with an aspect ratio of 1.33:1. Well, what it means is that, when you have a 100px width for the cover, it must have a 133px height.
However, you need to realize that no publisher creates an eBook that fits Kindle perfectly. What happens when an eBook is rendered on various eReaders is that it aligns the book onto the center for the best user experience and render.
Since eBook designs you create are also important from a business point of view, you need to consider how your book will perform in a retail shop rather on eReaders alone.
How does Amazon Kindle work with Book Cover Designs?
It might surprise you to know that Amazon Kindle gets very flexible with the dimension of the book cover a publisher can upload to their site.
However, they have the following things in mind when letting a publisher upload the cover of their eBook;
When it comes to Amazon book cover design in Photoshop the recommended dimension size of your eBook is 1.6:1, which means that for every 1000 pixels of width, the height must be 1600 pixels.
Since the major objective of a cover page is to draw people to it, the cover page must have the best quality. As such, for High Definition devices, the height should be 2500pixels at the minimum.
Ideal dimensions for the book cover in pixels in Kindle is 2600:1600 pixels
Non-Fiction and Novels
If you have noticed, most of the publishers display, on the title’s Kindle page, the original dimension of the original cover design. It will mostly have an aspect ratio of 1.5:1.
Though it is a little wider than the recommended size by Amazon, the major advantage of the wider aspect ratio is that the publisher gets more room to incorporate effective designs.
For the best experience at this aspect ratio, the best dimension is 2500×3750 pixels.
The books that fall into the category of illustrated such as cookery, art, and photography, most of the time, have a wider area so as to encompass the imageries on the cover. As such, those book covers have an aspect ratio of 1.2:1 or 1.4:1.
The aspects ratios are selected to complement the cover design of the book as the cover is an increasingly important selling point for all of the illustrated books.
Hence, the aspect ratios are established to complement this important aspect.
2800 * 3920 pixels is the best dimension to utilize the 1.4:1 ratio
3000 * 3600 pixels is the best dimension to utilize the 1.2:1 ratio
Audiobooks have been steadily growing its appeal across the world as it is easier for people to listen to a book rather than reading it.
Like any other type of book, the cover design dimensions are important for an audiobook, too. Providing a throwback to the old times of CDs, the audiobooks have the aspect ratio of 1:1.
Most of the time, what a publisher does after launching the book, is to record the audiobook and publish the same with the same cover. This can make the existing cover look cropped. Hence, if you are planning to do that, we implore you to do not.
You can work with your eBook cover designers to adjust the dimensions of the audiobook to make it better and more alluring to the buyers.
For the best experience, 3200 * 3200pixels is the ideal dimension for the aspect ratio of 1:1
As you have understood the dimensions of your eBooks, let us now look at the dimensions of printed books.
How to Choose the Ideal Dimension for Your Printed Books
Most of the time, a publisher wants to create printed books along with the e-versions of the same. In such a case, the trim of your books will decide the success of the book. While you are thinking about the size of the trim, you need to keep two important things in your mind; a) the cost of printing, b) each book category has a standard size. The same goes for paperback book cover dimensions, as well.
After having decided on the trim, you need to understand how it will affect the design and size of the hardcover cover design. There are various PODs (Print-on-demand) that will need their clients to submit the front and back covers as well as the bleed and the spine.
5 w x 8.5 h (inches) is the standard size for paperbacks
6 w x 9 h (inches) is a popular trim size.
However, be cautious when choosing of larger sizes, over 6″ w x 9 h ″ or 7″ w x 10 h ″.
You can calculate the width by adding two times the bleed, two times the trim width, and the spine width. The height, on the other hand, can be arrived at by finding the sum of the trim height and two times the bleed.
While this can be a little—okay a lot more—confusing for an average publisher, if you seek the help of a professional cover design company, they will take care of all of it for you. This is the best option as you will need to otherwise have the entire infrastructure, software program, design tools and other paraphernalia with you to get the best cover.
What Are Industry Standards for Book Cover Design?
The standards for ebook cover design are typically determined by a number of factors that are mentioned as follows:
Type of File
You should select the right format for a cover file that you want to forward to a print-on-demand service. Your objective is to ensure top quality while restricting the file size to the minimum. PNG, JPG, and TIFF are the widely accepted file formats.
While determining the right color mode, you should select the RGB mode if your book’s cover is meant to be viewed online. You should choose CMYK if you are looking to create a print version.
When you measure resolution, pixels per inch (PPI) are used as a unit of measurement. Similarly, for print-versions, the unit of measurement is dots per inch (DPI). The print-on-demand service providers generally don’t accept files that stretch over 2 megabytes and so files having resolutions greater than 300 DPI are not used. The standard requirement is 72 DPI and if the resolution falls below this limit, a blurry cover image would be the outcome.
Choosing the Right Book Cover Size
There are certain factors that affect the cover size of a book. Here’s a list of what you need to take into account:
Size of the eReader
Most people choose to use a personal e-reader to read books. So you should have knowledge about the size of common e-readers and how book covers get displayed on them. This would guide you to select an appropriate size for the book cover.
Different sizes would apply to books of different genres. It might happen that a story cannot be categorized into one genre. So you should decide how you want your book to be marketed and presented. This would allow you to decide on the appropriate size of your eBook cover as well as the size of the cover image.
While selecting the size of the page and cover, you should consider the page and word count. Covers of different sizes are required for books having different lengths. For example, you may not want a novella to have pages of larger sizes. Similarly, you should not opt for a small-sized cover for a long book.
Cover-size may often depend on the place where your book needs to be sold. In case of a printed book, think if it is a mass-market book or if it caters to a niche market. Big publishers would take these decisions but self-published authors would need to make a choice themselves.
If you choose to consult a designer, he/she can help you decide on the cover art and image and page sizes. If you are a self-published author, you may not have the budget to hire the services of a designer and may have to adopt a DIY approach. You should have a better idea about the marketing and cost and this would allow you to design a cover image of your choice.
Size requirements influence publishing costs. Your paperback size should be small if you are a self-published author.
The Resolution You Need to Choose
If you are seeking the help of IngramSpark and Createspace/KDP Print, you are required to have 300 DPI for your cover design to get the best experience.
You need to keep in mind that the CMYK coloration is better than RGB for most cover designs.