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What is E-Publishing? Types, Advantages and Trends

Victoria Puzhevich
Published: February 14, 2023

Today, electronic publishing is one of the fastest-growing trends in the world of digitalization. Day by day, more and more print publishing businesses, as well as companies with a high volume of moving documents, are switching from print publication to electronic. There is a growing demand for Epub resources in the education sector as well. Which, since the post-pandemic times, is gradually moving to online realities.

Over the past few years, the publishing industry has experienced many changes aimed at improving publishing in general, as new technologies continue to spur innovation. In time, all printed publications will be digitized. But when we talk about the electronic publishing industry, we don’t only mean digital print publications, but also a huge number of special resources and e-publishing solutions that already exist today and are developing at an all-time high rate.

In this article, we’ll look at the main advantages of electronic publishing over printed, discuss the latest trends and try to explain why today is the time for the publishing industry to face digitization.

The Growth of E-Publishing

The publishing industry is undergoing a tech revolution that is changing the way people used to get information. According to The Statista E-Publishing Global Outlook, revenue in this segment is projected to reach US$26.60bn in 2023. The same outlook forecasts that revenue is expected to show an annual growth rate (CAGR 2023-2027) of 3.36%, resulting in a projected market volume of US$30.36bn by 2027.

With this steady growth from 2022 to 2025, we can assume that more and more users will switch to electronic publication formats from print. Under such circumstances, the number of new smart solutions will penetrate every industry and steadily help businesses gain an edge over their competitors.

The e-publishing market has been spurred by a range of parallel technological achievements. The use of personal computers and portable devices has increased exponentially over the years. On top of all that, many handheld and lightweight e-book reading devices have become available. It makes reading on the move easier and more comparable to reading a real book. Lifestyle transformations, improved broadband connectivity, the increasing prevalence of online learning in general, and the desire to get content immediately are some of the factors influencing the growth of this sector.

E-Publishing Definition

So what exactly is e-publishing and who is the primary audience for such innovation? Today, electronic publishing is the production of all existing publishing materials in a digital format, together with the creation of electronic libraries and catalogs distributed through a computer network or other digital media.

E-publishing can be done in a variety of ways. There are now several e-book publishing solutions where digital versions of authors’ books are distributed through proprietary electronic reading devices. And there are a number of digital journals and publications available online or published on computers and mobile devices.

Types of E-Publishing

Many people associate digital publications with e-books. But e-books are not the only type of digital publication; there are many others. Let’s take a look at the types of E-publishing for further understanding of what we’re dealing with.

 Advantages of E-Publishing

We’ve prepared main benefits for using the e-publishing solutions.

On-demand publishing: The individual subscribers can be provided with only those documents, which match their profile, and can be charged accordingly. ‘On-demand publishing’ also allows retrospective searching and SDI.

Fast information update: Your data can be kept up to date so that the customer can purchase the latest version of the publication without any issues.

Open and Multiple Access: Most e-journal creators offer a site licensing policy that provides multiple access and access via the local network.

Just-in-time information: Library and information centers don’t “buy a publication” to access the information in it, they can have online access to e-journals and download or print the material they need. The E-pub provides the means to connect, set up audiovisuals, create and revise documents, be interactive, and find information quickly.

Speed: E-publishing saves turnaround time, that is, the time taken to apply, revise, review, draft, compose, print, bind, and send out, which is eliminated through the use of computers and networks. This improves the timeliness of publication and is appropriate for journals where fast communication is of primary importance. This leads to a further reduction in the gap between the author and the end user.

Distribution: The main advantages of electronic publications are their global distribution, their availability via hyperlinks, the ability to access from various devices, and the ability to quickly find the material you are looking for.

Fast and easy search: There are many search engines for accessing and finding relevant articles. To simplify the process, and to raise the reach of their publications, most content creators provide keywords, author, and term searches that reduce the role of additional indexing and abstracting.

Flexible Control: Electronic information can be easily managed by adding bookmarks and personal notes to sites or by downloading it from personal files or databases for copying and editing.

E-publishing Trends

Print-on-Demand (POD)

Print-on-demand is ordering a paper version of a book you like from the publisher. This is a great feature that allows you to get back to your old habit of reading if you want, for example, to give someone a gift in the form of a book you like.

This method can help relieve publishers of the need to print traditional print runs of several thousand books at a time. The technology involves sophisticated laser printing systems and text in an electronic format that printers can read. Many publishers, including aspiring web publishers, hope that this method will allow them to print smaller runs of books more efficiently and still make a profit.

At the moment technology – POD is the real trend in e-publishing. In a sense, it is a good intermediate step between the conventional way of printing paper books and electronic books. However, because POD still uses paper and cannot be delivered as cheaply and quickly as e-books, in the long run the popularity of this innovation may decline as consumers become more comfortable using e-readers and e-book readers.

Interactive e-books

The most modern trend in digital publishing today is Interactive E-books. Giving your readers ebooks with video and interactive content can help you better engage them in their reading, offer them a variety of resources, and turn the tedious process of learning complex business terms into a joyful experience.

And while enhanced content is the real deal for your technology-loving readers, you shouldn’t neglect to give your eBook an amazing aesthetic feel.

To do that, try to come up with a unique book cover design that will make your reader want to add it to their collection.

Audiobooks

Improving your e-book, as mentioned in the paragraph above, is a great way to get more users involved in the digitalization process. And what could be more convenient and straightforward than adding audio enhancement to your reading device, for even more convenient content consumption.

What is the main convenience? For example, if a reader is a busy entrepreneur who has many responsibilities and no time to read, but spends an hour a day at the gym, audiobooks are a great solution to absorb information in a highly multitasking environment.

A-books

Another very compelling trend in the E-pub niche is “augmented books” – or “a-books” – which may appear on bookstore shelves in the near future.

The University of Surrey has announced the latest version of a research project that seeks to combine the best of physical and e-books.

The main idea of the authors of this technology is to provide the reader with the pleasant feeling of a physical book in their hands, but to allow access to additional information or multimedia content by means of modern technology.

At the moment, this technology is being demonstrated in real life with the Climate Domesday Book, which triggers an interaction such as the playing of a video or audio on a nearby big screen relevant to what the user is reading.

Conclusion

Digital transformation has influenced many business areas and the publishing sector is not an exception. People are switching to digital media due to its easiness of access and comprehension. At  SCAND we strive to keep pace with the fast changes in the publishing sector and develop custom solutions for publishing companies. We also have a proprietary product epuBear – an easily customizable cross-platform EPUB SDK for EPUB readers development.

Source: scand.com