Metadata Updates


One of the benefits of having a Lightning Source account is being able to update your title’s metadata within your account. Updating the information about your book is quick and easy on the Lightning Source platform.


How to Submit a Metadata Update

  • Click on Titles and then select the blue Start Search button. Click on the title of your book; this brings you to your Title Details page. 


  • Click on the blue square/pen beside the information that needs to be updated. For example, if you are updating the author name, you will click on the blue square/pen beside About the Author/Contributor.


  • Once you make the update, click the blue Save button at the bottom of the page to ensure your changes are saved.



What Information Can Be Updated?

If your title has never been in distribution, any changes can be made to the metadata as well as the book’s content.

If your title has been in distribution, only 20% of your book's content or less can be updated, and minor changes can be made to the metadata. Examples include updating a subject code, book description, or review quotes.

Also, anything that affects how your book is printed cannot be changed. For example, changing from a black and white to a color interior will not process correctly if your title has been in distribution.

Significant changes to the metadata/content or changes that affect the printing of your book will cause distribution issues. For these types of changes, a new record set up under a different ISBN is recommended.


When Do Updates Take Effect?

Once metadata changes are made to a title in Lightning Source's system, those updates are sent to Ingram. Ingram then re-broadcasts the metadata feed through the distribution channels. However, each retailer has its own schedule for receiving this information and making updates to its site. Metadata updates can take anywhere from 1-6 weeks to appear on retailer websites.


Price Updates

Price updates are different than other metadata updates because they affect your publisher compensation and distribution orders. Our price changes are scheduled and occur monthly to ensure a smooth update in the distribution channels. For more info regarding updates to pricing, wholesale discounts, and return status please see here.  


Changes that could affect Printing

If you update something that affects the way your book is printed, you may need to submit a new cover file. For example, if you change from Standard Color 50 to Premium Color, the paper weight is different, and your spine width will change. A new cover file with the correct spine width will need to be submitted to accommodate your changes and ensure the best printing results.

You should be prompted during the metadata change to submit a new file if necessary.

*Please note any updates that affect the printing of your book may also affect the print cost of your book.


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