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How to present a book online?

Discussion in 'HTML & Website Design' started by TupperLake, Jan 21, 2019.

  1. #1
    Hello everyone! First time poster here.

    I am looking for some advice on how to "web-ify" a How-To book that I wrote and put it online.

    The problem is that it's not practical to have one webpage that is the entire book, but I'm not sure how to split the book up.
    SEMrush
    This may sound elementary, but I am selling the book and giving people access, so I don't want to split up the book just any way as that will make the web development part difficult.

    Does that make sense?
     
    TupperLake, Jan 21, 2019 IP
    SEMrush
  2. SpacePhoenix

    SpacePhoenix Well-Known Member

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    #2
    What about having it as a pdf file?
     
    SpacePhoenix, Jan 21, 2019 IP
  3. TupperLake

    TupperLake Peon

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    #3
    Good idea, but my fear with a PDF is that it will fall victim to privacy to easily.

    If I sell you the book on my ecommerce site, after you get access, you can circulate that PDF all over the world.

    To combat this, my hope was to take a rather large book that I wrote in Open Office Writer, "webify" it (i.e. convert it to HTML) and then sell people "access" to the book.

    So a person would buy the book, I would turn on access to the book for that user, and then they could access the book in perpetuity by logging into my website. Follow me?

    That being said, I'm trying to figure out how to present and code the book I wrote which is currenty in a word processingd ocument.

    Hope that helps.
     
    TupperLake, Jan 21, 2019 IP
  4. SpacePhoenix

    SpacePhoenix Well-Known Member

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    #4
    Can't see that working, they could just copy and paste the book to a word processor, save it then circulate it. I believe that with pdfs it's possible to select some option when saving that stops copy and paste working with a given pdf file
     
    SpacePhoenix, Jan 21, 2019 IP
  5. TupperLake

    TupperLake Peon

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    #5
    If someone wants to steal my work, I'm sure they will succeed. But it's LOT easier for Mrs. Jones to *forward* a complete copy of my book in PDF format to her neighor Mrs. Tubbs, than to have to re-assembled my book back into a Word document.

    But I'm not getting my concerns across...

    How do I convert a 1,000 page book into a webpage or mor elike webpages so that it is easy to access for people?

    Lets say I split the book up into "10 chapters" - that makes each one a 100 page webpage?!

    Isn't that too big to expect people to load into a web browser, or is it not a big deal? (Of curse mobile users would be screwed!!)
     
    TupperLake, Jan 22, 2019 IP
  6. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #6
    You're right about someone stealing it. No stopping that and I honestly can't answer your questions. Seems to me that you'd have some upset customers if they have to keep moving from URL to URL just to read your book. (At least that's my initial impression from what you're saying.)

    I am pretty sure, though, that if your book is of any interest to the masses ignoring the mobile users is a huge mistake.
     
    JoeSpirit, Jan 23, 2019 IP
  7. qwikad.com

    qwikad.com Illustrious Member Affiliate Manager

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    #7
    qwikad.com, Jan 23, 2019 IP
  8. kk5st

    kk5st Prominent Member

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    #8
    PDF is a poor format for anything other than print. It is fixed dimension (other than scaling), thus difficult to sync page size to viewport while still being readable. MSWord or any other word processor has the same problems, it's intended for print. Were it me, I would convert to one of the e-book formats and make it available via FTP. You can issue a GUID and limit download attempts or use a time window or both.

    E-book formats are designed explicitly for this purpose.

    gary
     
    kk5st, Jan 23, 2019 IP
  9. TupperLake

    TupperLake Peon

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    #9
    It's got to be better to start a business and uffer from some theft, than to not even try and sell nothing?!


    People don't complain about that as they navigate the Internet.

    Doesn't seem to challenging to me to read one web page that is maybe 10 printed pages long, and at the bottom click "Go to next page/section"...


    I'm not ignoring them, but I need to solve the problem for readers using a laptop/desktop computer before I worry about mobile device.
     
    TupperLake, Jan 23, 2019 IP
  10. TupperLake

    TupperLake Peon

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    #10
    Sounds like you are encouraging me to go with a web page. (In the context of what I am doing, that is all Google Docs is...)
     
    TupperLake, Jan 23, 2019 IP
  11. TupperLake

    TupperLake Peon

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    #11
    I have read other places that people think PDF's are not mobile-friendly...


    I am a building a website where people can buy one of my books via credit card, and then I give them unlimited access to the webpage.

    That woud be more secure, because unless someone scrapes the book or saves the HTML, the only way to access it is by logging in, and I track log details, so if a person is sharing credentials, I would find out.

    If I convert my book to PDF or ePub or whatever, what is to stop someone from simply emailing the digital book to an endless number of people who did not pay for it?

    As I see it, that makes PDFs and ePubs and eBooks riskier when it comes to piracy.

    Maybe you all see it differently?
     
    TupperLake, Jan 23, 2019 IP
  12. kk5st

    kk5st Prominent Member

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    #12
    PDF files have the same authentication protection as a web page and the same logging records. E-books give your buyer a better user experience than html, which is quite clunky compared to e-books.

    Re. piracy: How many of those people would have bought the book anyway? Electronic media have almost no marginal costs, so you don't lose anything. Biggest worry is if you're heavily overcharging for a reference book; a very common practice in the academic print medium. Then the temptation to pirate is strong.

    Re. emailing: They can save the page and email it, too. Depending on client apps and ISPs' limits, the file size may be too large. They could cut it into chunks and send multiple emails, but any kind of friction at all stops most people.

    Purely anecdotal, but one singer who had multiple top ten records over a long period testified before Congress that the most pirated albums made her the most money. Maybe piracy is the new, low-cost way to advertise. :grin:

    gary
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2019
    kk5st, Jan 23, 2019 IP
  13. Spartan14

    Spartan14 Member

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    #13
    Yea i think you should focus more on getting a great product and developing a real business .focus more on customers than thieves
     
    Spartan14, Jan 24, 2019 IP
  14. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #14
    I won't argue that as I totally agree with you on this point.


    True. I think I mis-interpreted what you were saying here.


    Have you considered publishing the book inside a membership site? Not sure if it would solve your problem but it might be worth thinking about.

    I think kk5st makes some valid points in post #12. And I too have seen on a few occasions that a few copies of products released freely boosted sales.
     
    JoeSpirit, Jan 24, 2019 IP
  15. kk5st

    kk5st Prominent Member

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    #15
    * I meant to say FTP files. I had a real life brain fart.

    gary
     
    kk5st, Jan 24, 2019 IP
  16. TupperLake

    TupperLake Peon

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    #16
    As far as I know, not exactly.

    If I put a password on a PDF, and give it to you, you can then email the PDF and the password to 1,000 friends and they can all get into the PDF.

    If I put a paywall on my online book, and give you the password, after about 10 different IPs try to log into your account, I will freeze it. (And if I wanted to take the time, there are even fancier things I could do to make it very hard for you to share your one license...)


    I don't care about losing sales on 10 books when you distribute it to them. I would worry if you published a PDF on a file-sharing website and 10,000 people stole that one book. Or if you could easily reporduce the book and then turnaround and sell it yourself.

    BTW, is $40-$50 too much for a 1,000 page cmputer guide? Good luck getting a better deal at Barnes & Noble!


    But most consumers aren't smart enough or motivated enough to do that. But any idiot can easily distribute a PDF!


    That is certainly in the realm of possibilities...

    I am just trying to ask the tough questions up front before I let the horse out of the barn!!
     
    TupperLake, Jan 24, 2019 IP
  17. TupperLake

    TupperLake Peon

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    #17
    I hope you are right...

    Well, I wrote a 27 chapter, 1,000 page book which teaches people practical computer skills and no such book exists on the market. So, yes, I think I have a good thing, although being my first-ever book, I'm sure it is a little rough around the edges!

    Likewise, I have been working on getting my business et up for years, and again, I think I have a unique offering that doesn't exst anywhere else - plus it solves some current major issues facing the world.

    It just seems like the world and Internet are so rampant with crooks and thieves, that a person has to be particularly careful not to let the bad guys steal an otherwise awesome idea?!

    Do you speak from experience, or is that just your gut feeling?
     
    TupperLake, Jan 24, 2019 IP
  18. TupperLake

    TupperLake Peon

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    #18
    Other people have brought up similar points, but personally, I would rather spend the evening sitting in front of a computer - even a laptop - and read and scroll than balancing an eReader on my lap.

    Some of my favorite reading on weekends are long news articles/exposes from places like Rolling Stone, The New Yorker, etc Those articles are often 10-20 pages long.

    So if one of my chapters is 50 pages, maybe I could slice it up into three separate web pages - all linked together with accessible navigation bars - and then people would have a decent chunk they could dive into, but it would be hunormous.

    Do you know what a "hamburger menu" is? I think having one in the upper left-hand corner listing each chapter and maybe subsections would make navingating my entire book very easy.

    What do you mean?

    My plan is to have a website that is like an online newspaper with tons of free content (think New York Times). Then after I whet people' appetite, I will also have a store off to the side where people can buy books. (More like licenses to books.)

    To read a book, you will log in using your credentials to the website, plus you have to be listed in my subscription database.

    Now, a person could share their credentials with a friend, but I log the IP you are logging in from, AND I prohibit concurrent log in's. So I think someone would have to be pretty determined to steal books - or at least access to a book - that way. (A lot more work than forwarding a PDF to the world?!)

    Is that what you were talking about?


    Well, similar to what a lot of websites do (e.g. Wall Street Journal), I plan on having *free* content and then *premium* content.

    As part of that, I might publish the first two chapters of a book for *free*, and then once people are hooked, to read the rest of the book they would have to buy a license.

    (The NY Times and Wall Street Journal always do that on really good articles, and if you don't have a subscription it can be frustrating!! Of course, unlike the WSJ, one of my books is only from $20-$50 and not like $250/year for a WSJ subscription!!)
     
    TupperLake, Jan 24, 2019 IP
  19. TupperLake

    TupperLake Peon

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    #19
    Actually, I think Adobe has a fancy "file server" where you can control who can access a PDF remotely, but it probably costs thousands or tens of thousands of dollars, and it might require strict client requirements that would chance people away.

    I think I could more easily program similar functionality on my website if need be...
     
    TupperLake, Jan 24, 2019 IP
  20. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #20
    The initial condition of the book isn't important if the content has value. What is important is that you get it out there. You can always revise the book as you gain experience/knowledge.

    I think you already have in mind what I mentioned. Your "store off to the side" seems to be a membership site-like application.
     
    JoeSpirit, Jan 25, 2019 IP