Publishing Service Index: January 2016

JanuaryThis is the first PUBLISHING SERVICE INDEX for 2016. IngramSpark has held on to its number one position at the top of the index ahead of CreateSpace. Kindle Direct Publishing swaps places with Smashwords. Kobo Writing Life moves up two places to sixth, its highest position yet in the index.


Lightning Source continues gradual slow slide, now close to the edge and in danger of slipping outside the top ten for the first time ever. Just over two years ago Lightning Source sat at the top of the table. And one of the most significant movers this month is employee-owned printer and publishing service provider Thomson-Shore. However, going in the wrong direction is Bookbaby and it is not far away from exiting the top twenty.


The overall title output was a little more than I expected for the Dec/Jan period but still well down on what it was this time last year. February and March could be very interesting months to look out for. It’s often a time of year that publishing service providers revise their offerings and pricing.


TIPM continues to receive regular feedback on services through comments under our reviews, via our TIPM Facebook page, and directly to us.  We want to thank all of those who took the time to share their publishing experiences. Your comments are always welcome and every comment and experience of a publishing service — positive or negative — is always reflected in every new index published through TIPM.
1 1 IngramSpark GLOBAL PRT/FUL 757.9 SAME
2 2 CreateSpace USA DIY/FSP 744.31 SAME
3 4 Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) GLOBAL DIY 702.35 UP
4 3 Smashwords USA DIY 697.83 DOWN
5 5 Matador UK FSP 637.93 SAME
6 8 Kobo Writing Life GLOBAL DIY 575.37 UP
7 6 Hillcrest Media/Mill City Press USA PUB/FSP 573.99 DOWN
8 7 Lightning Source (Direct) GLOBAL PRT/FUL 564.68 DOWN
9 9 SilverWood Books UK FSP 552.93 SAME
10 10 Blurb GLOBAL DIY 515.96 SAME
11 11 BookLocker USA FSP 483.33 SAME
12 12 Draft2Digital UK/USA DIY 464.05 SAME
13 13 Epigraph Publishing Service USA FSP 444.95 SAME
14 18 Thomson-Shore USA PRT/FSP 433.97 UP
15 15 USA PRT/FUL 432.04 SAME
16 14 Dog Ear Publishing USA FSP 431.39 DOWN
17 17 Publish Green GLOBAL FSP 429.62 SAME
18 19 Lulu GLOBAL DIY/FSP 421.66 UP
19 16 Bookbaby USA DIY/FSP 420.3 DOWN
20 20 Pressbook USA DIY 408.5 SAME
21 21 Unbound UK PUB/CRW 408.24 SAME
22 22 York Publishing Services UK PRT/FULL 402.77 SAME
23 23 Mijn Bestseller EUROPE DIY 396.2 SAME
24 25 CPI UK Antony Rowe EUROPE PRT 390.28 UP
25 24 John Hunt Publishing GLOBAL PUB/FSP 389.28 DOWN
26 26 Wingspan USA FSP 385.05 SAME
27 28 Aventine USA FSP 373.62 UP
28 27 eBookIT GLOBAL DIY/FSP 372.45 DOWN
29 30 Checkpoint Press IRELAND PUB/FSP 369.93 UP
30 29 Cold River Studio USA FSP 369.02 DOWN
31 31 Wheatmark Publishing USA FSP 367.06 SAME
32 32 VirtualBookVorm USA FSP 366.59 SAME
33 33 SelfPublishBooks/Lettertec IRELAND FSP 366.53 SAME
34 35 Google Play Books GLOBAL DIY 361.2 UP
35 36 Infinity Publishing USA FSP 358.99 UP
36 37 Grosvenor House Publishing UK FSP 356.32 UP
37 34 Book Country GLOBAL FSP 355.86 DOWN
38 45 Book Guild Publishing UK FSP 355.11 UP
39 38 The Choir Press UK/USA FSP 353.93 DOWN
40 39 Wasteland Press USA FSP 353.75 DOWN
41 40 Acorn Independent Press UK FSP 353.59 DOWN
42 42 FastPencil USA DIY 352.74 SAME
43 41 Apex Publishing UK PUB/FSP 352.71 DOWN
44 43 Americas Press USA PRT 352.64 DOWN
45 46 Telemachus Press USA FSP 346.76 UP
46 47 Pumbo EUROPE DIY 346.45 UP
47 48 Xulon Press USA FSP 344.93 UP
48 44 Tate Publishing USA PUB/ASP 344.37 DOWN
49 49 Authoright UK/USA FSP 343.03 SAME
50 50 Outskirts Press USA FSP 343 SAME
51 51 Janus Publishing UK FSP 342.38 SAME
52 53 Open Book Editions USA FSP 340.52 UP
53 52 Kazoo Publishing Services IRELAND FSP 338.61 DOWN
54 54 A.H. Stockwell UK FSP 337.22 SAME
55 55 Llumina Press USA PUB/FSP 337.19 SAME
56 56 Diadem Books UK/USA FSP 334.23 SAME
57 58 iUniverse USA FSP 333.8 UP
58 57 Pyjama Press UK/EUROPE FSP 333.62 DOWN
59 59 PubliBook EUROPE DIY 333.07 SAME
60 64 Original Writing IRELAND FSP 332.83 UP
61 60 Kbuuk USA DIY 331.94 DOWN
62 61 Direct POD UK PRT 331.71 DOWN
63 62 Eprint Ireland IRELAND PRT 329.44 DOWN
64 63 True Directions USA PUB/FSP 327.56 DOWN
65 65 Abbott Press USA PUB/FSP 324.09 SAME
66 66 Pomegranate Press UK/USA FSP 324.06 SAME
67 67 The Book Producers IRELAND FSP 323.65 SAME
68 68 Arima UK FSP 322.81 SAME
69 70 Turning Stone Press USA FSP 321.49 UP
70 69 Better Book Company UK FSP 319.62 DOWN
71 71 UKUnpublished UK FSP 317.55 SAME
72 72 Archway Publishing GLOBAL PUB/FSP 310.39 SAME
73 73 Gemini International IRELAND PRT 308.62 SAME
74 74 Chandler Book Design UK PRT 302.06 SAME
75 75 Dolman Scott/Oak Press UK FSP 301.49 SAME
76 76 Choice Publishing IRELAND FSP 300.1 SAME
77 77 WestBow Press USA PUB/FSP 300.05 SAME
78 78 Austin MacAuley UK FSP 299.72 SAME
79 79 Epic Press UK FSP 297.88 SAME
80 80 Balboa Press GLOBAL PUB/FSP 295.77 SAME
81 82 Trafford Publishing USA FSP 293.79 UP
82 83 Dorrance Press USA FSP 287.12 UP
83 84 ShopMyBook (Unibook) GLOBAL PRT 283.38 UP
84 81 AuthorHouse GLOBAL FSP 283.18 DOWN
85 85 Spiderwize UK FSP 277.95 SAME
86 86 Spire Publishing UK/USA FSP 275.24 SAME
87 87 Xlibris GLOBAL FSP 265.64 SAME
88 88 PublishAmerica/America Star Books USA FSP 252.38 SAME
89 89 Melrose Books UK FSP 251.66 SAME
90 91 Dom Tom Publishing UK/USA FSP 251.01 UP
91 90 Pegasus Elliot MacKenzie UK PUB/FSP 249.65 DOWN
92 92 Olympia Publishers UK PUB/FSP 209.63 SAME
93 93 Raider International Pub./Green Shore GLOBAL FSP 117.29 SAME


  • DIY – Do-it-yourself bespoke services and basic conversion and formatting services
  • FSP – Full Service Provider (Packages & Bespoke) – May also include Partnership publishing programs
  • PUB – Also offers Mainstream Contracts or is a service imprint of a traditional publishing house
  • PRT – Printer (primarily a printer with some additional but limited services)
  • FULL – Fulfilment Services provided for distribution logistics, warehousing of stock (including supply to wholesaler and retailers)
  • CRW – Crowdsource


There is a much more detailed explanation of what the Publishing Service Index is and how authors can best use it in this post.


The most asked question we get at The Independent Publishing Magazine is often along the lines of; ‘What self-publishing service should I go with?‘; ‘Is so and so a good service to go with?‘; or ‘Is so and so a scam?


In some cases, that is an easy question to answer, cut and dry, but in other circumstances, the answer is entirely arbitrary. We are not here to review and run down a company’s name, nor are we here to endorse a company’s services. If we were only to review companies according to every point on an ideal dream list of what an author wants/should get, we would have very few reviews to share with you. In truth, no company has ever attained a 10/10, and only a few have recorded more than 08/10.


The reality is that some companies offering publishing services begin in a blaze of glory and we might rate them favourably at the time; others, frankly, are just poor, and they improve (sometimes in response to our reviews) to offer reasonable or better services. We are constantly updating our reviews, but this takes considerable time, and so do the initial reviews.


We get a vast amount of information from authors and the companies selling author solutions services every day – good and bad. We get a great deal of information from monitoring services week by week against the experiences of what authors report back to us. Simply put, and truthfully, we cannot reflect all of this information through the reviews. That is why the comments section under each company we review is so important. It is your recording and dealings with that specific company, and a positive or negative flag to subsequent authors considering using the same company.


So, how do we reflect the changing ups and downs with services?


We believe the PUBLISHING SERVICE INDEX will help to guide authors to services on the up, and those, gradually on the down. If you like, what we present is a kind of stock exchange for companies supplying publisher services.


The PUBLISHING SERVICE INDEX was first launched in June 2010.




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  2. Jimmy Cummins said:

    Thank you for this service. I live in Australia and have had two books published at significant cost by Original Writing Ltd. in Smithfield, Dublin. I have just discovered that the company has gone into liquidation and a Liquidator has been appointed. However I cannot find the name of the Liquidator and the former MD of Original Writing is not forthcoming with details. Having “intellectual capital” tied up and with my files possessed by OR I find myself in no mans land. Can anybody help me please? Many thanks, Jimmy Cummins. Author of “Through The Hoops” and “A Tear for the Pawns – My Quest for Peace in Northern Ireland”.