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eBook vs. e-book vs. ebook

April 17, 2021

eBook vs. e-book vs. ebook — we have all, at some point, asked ourselves which spelling is correct. After all, it’s a term that gets over 956 million search results. More importantly, it’s a term that’s connected to an industry that earned $1.94 billion in 2019 in the US alone. That’s quite literally billions of people worldwide buying books that they can read on their smart devices wherever they go.

 

Here at Content Gravy, we know how important these digital books really are. So, in order to help you solve this eBook vs. e-book vs. ebook dilemma, we did some research in order to figure out which spelling is, in fact, the proper one. Or, at the very least, which one will stick.

Capitalizing the “B”

Before going over all three versions, let’s take a look at the ones without the hyphen first.

First, there’s the spelling with no capitalized letters, “ebook” (spelled “Ebook” when at the beginning of a sentence). Here are some of the titles from a few online publications and blogs around the world that use this version:

Library ebook lending surges as UK turns to fiction during lockdown

— The Guardian, October 23rd, 2020 

Iranian ebook store offers publications for non-native Persian learners

Tehran Times, October 13th, 2020

ByteDance is investing in ebooks

— Good E-Reader, November 5th, 2020

Then there’s the “eBook” spelling, with the camel case (internally capitalized) “B.” Here are a few recent uses of this version:

New eBook from AcctTwo Helps Churches Avoid Chaos in the Back-Office

— PRWeb, November 5th, 2020

Sontiq™ Releases 4th Annual eBook for Consumers and Businesses to Secure the Privacy of Sensitive Information

— BusinessWire, November 5th, 2020

In short, both options are quite popular. But how does that help us decide which spelling is the one to use?

According to current analytics, most of the websites that advertise digital book writing services, such as our very own Content Gravy, prefer the term “eBook.” Back in 2006, a test was conducted using the two variants, and it found that people were more likely to click on an ad with “ebook” or “Ebook” in it than the one with “eBook.” And even though this study was conducted 14 years ago, people still use the “ebook” version online. Why is that the case, even with the current trends leaning toward “eBook?” Before we provide the answer, let’s cover the third option as well.

Hyphenating the Word

Using a hyphen in the “e-book” spelling is a carryover from early internet days. Back in the day, electronic terms either used a hyphen (“e-mail”) or were composed of two words (“web site”). Even today, publications like the New York Times and the National Post use the hyphenated form of “e-book.” However, looking at Google Trends, we see that both “eBook” and “ebook/Ebook” outperform “e-book” by a huge margin.

eBook vs. e-book vs. ebook — Which Is Correct?

Sadly, there is no straightforward answer other than “they are all correct.” Whichever option we choose will adequately describe the product — an electronic book that you can read on a digital platform.

However, this sounds like a cop-out answer, so let’s rephrase the question. Which of the three spellings is the best one for online businesses?

There are a few issues with the term “eBook.” For example, you can’t really use it at the beginning of a sentence because it breaks the basic rules of the English language. All sentences should start with a capitalized word, and capitalizing “eBook” would look odd (“EBook”). On the other hand, “ebook” is useful in both online searches and SEO texts. Moreover, it fits perfectly with the standards of the English language in terms of capitalizing.

However, there’s a reason why companies always choose “eBook” over the other two. The name is visually appealing, and it sticks out in headlines and product descriptions. It also reminds the readers of other popular products that use camel case letters, such as iPads, iPhones, etc. In other words, it’s a form of brand marketing in and of itself.

Why Is the eBook Question Important?

At Content Gravy, we aim to provide our customers with the best eBook writing and editing services online. As such, we take every aspect of eBook writing seriously, including the best way to brand the product. And what better way to brand your digital content than to answer the eBook vs. e-book vs. ebook question using raw data and facts?

So, if you require high-quality, in-depth eBook writing services, contact Content Gravy today!

Founder

Founder of Content Gravy and based just west of Brisbane, Australia. Stephen works with companies and brands of every size to establish, expand, and improve their online footprint through the implementation of the highest quality digital content.

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