Files and uploading overview

Google Play partners can sell books in certain countries. The features described here aren't available everywhere.

File formats

Google accepts the following file formats:

If you plan to sell your book on Google Play, provide your book content in both .epub and .pdf format to give your readers more view options. However, only one format is required.

Even when the cover image is embedded within the .epub or .pdf file, you may wish to submit the cover image in a separate file. Google will use this file to display the book cover as a thumbnail.

Content guidelines

Before you upload any files, please ensure that your content meets Google's guidelines. If you plan to sell your books on Google Play, you should also review our publisher content policies for books on Google Play.

Size limits

  • Each file (including cover image files) should be less than 2 GB.
  • The book should be at least four pages long.

Format-specific guidelines

.pdf
  • The .pdf file must consist of the complete book or be one of a set of specially named multi-part files. Do not upload sample content such as an excerpt. Your Google Search preview settings control the amount that a user can preview.
  • The .pdf file must not be password protected, as this will prevent the file from processing.
  • To automatically generate a table of contents, include bookmarks in the .pdf file.
.epub
  • The .epub file must contain the front cover image.
  • The .epub file must consist of the complete book. Do not upload sample content such as an excerpt. Your Google Search preview settings control the amount that a user can preview.
  • The .epub file should be validated by EpubCheck.

Filenames

Check the table below for example filenames, depending on how you plan to submit your files.

A single .pdf file that includes the cover
  • Content and cover
    • ISBN.pdf
A .pdf file that doesn't contain covers. Cover images provided in separate files *
  • Content, no cover (required)
    • ISBN_interior.pdf
  • Front cover (required)
    • ISBN_frontcover.jpg (file extension may differ, such as .jpg, .tiff, .pdf or .png)
  • Back cover (optional, but should be uploaded first if submitted)
    • ISBN_backcover.jpg (file extension may differ, such as .jpeg, .tiff, .pdf or .png)

* An incomplete set of files will not process. Read more.

A book split into multiple .pdf files *
  • Cover and content
    • ISBN_1of3.pdf (numbering may differ)
    • ISBN_2of3.pdf (numbering may differ)
    • ISBN_3of3.pdf (numbering may differ)

* An incomplete set of files will not process. Read more.

An .epub file
  • Content, including cover (required)
    • ISBN.epub
  • Front cover (optional; used for marketing thumbnail)
    • ISBN_frontcover.jpg (file extension may differ, such as .jpeg, .tiff, .pdf or .png)

Which identifier to use:

  • If you upload files for a single book from the book's 'Content' tab: You don't need to include the identifier in the filename. Otherwise, the identifier is necessary to associate the file with the correct book. The filename extension will be used to determine what kind of file you've uploaded.
  • If your books already have unique identifiers such as an ISBN or a Google-assigned GGKEY: Replace ISBN in the example filenames above with the book's actual identifier. (For GGKEY identifiers, you don't have to include the GGKEY: prefix). If you have both a print and an electronic ISBN, we generally recommend to name your .pdf files using the print ISBN, and name the .epub files using the electronic ISBN. See more information about ISBNs.
  • If your books don't have unique identifiers: You can use your own filenames. Replace ISBN in the example filenames above with text of your choice. A 10-digit or 13-digit number should be avoided, as they may be mistaken by our system to be ISBNs. We also recommend that you avoid usage of the underscore character (_) except as noted in the examples (e.g. _interior or _frontcover).

Cover files

Cover files should be in .jpeg, .pdf, .tiff or .png format and have the appropriate filename extension.

Upload and update files

You can upload one or more files for a single book or for multiple books in the Partner Centre.

To update a file, upload the new version, which replaces the old version.

One file for a single book

To upload a file for a single book:

  1. In the book’s settings, go to the 'Content' tab.
  2. Upload the new file.

To update content or cover images, upload a new .pdf or .epub file to the existing book listing.

Multiple files for a single book

To upload multiple files for a single book:

  1. In the book’s settings, go to the 'Content' tab.
  2. Make sure that your files follow the naming requirements.
  3. Upload and submit all the files at the same time.
    • If you don't submit all the required files at the same time, the files are listed under 'Pending Content' on the book's Content tab. The content or cover doesn't process until you submit all the expected files. For example, ISBN_frontcover.pdf stays listed under 'Pending Content' until you upload ISBN_interior.pdf.

When you update a book with multiple files:

  • For multi-part .pdfs, like ISBN_1of2.pdf and ISBN_2of2.pdf: Resubmit all the files, even if not all of them are getting updated.
  • For a .pdf file without the cover, like ISBN_interior.pdf and ISBN_frontcover.jpg: Resubmit the content (ISBN_interior.pdf) to trigger the process for the most recent set of files. Alternatively, if you update the cover image with a .pdf file and don't change any other files, name the file as ISBN_frontcoveronly.pdf.

Multiple files for multiple books

To upload multiple files for multiple books:

  1. Go to the book catalogue.
  2. Select Advanced and then Add multiple content files.

Each updated filename must have either:

  • The same filename as its original file, or
  • The identifier as a prefix

If you use a filename that doesn't meet these requirements, you get a new book listing in your book catalogue.

Tips:

File status and history

You can view the status of files that you've submitted by visiting your book catalogue, click the book title, then go to the Content tab.

Your most recently uploaded files which haven't yet processed will display under 'Pending Content' with a status message. If there are any issues, click the error message for more information. If your files process successfully, the latest versions of each display type (e.g. the most recent .epub file, the most recent .pdf file and the most recent cover image file) will be listed under 'Processed Content' or 'Cover Files'.

Filenames listed in the history may differ from the filenames that you used when you submit files, as any files submitted through the 'Content' tab will be renamed to include the identifier in the filename. This won't interfere with the processing of your files.

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