Exporting from InDesign to issuu-ready PDFs

Print and web are two different things. So it's a good idea to optimize your PDFs for the web before you publish to issuu. This will ensure the highest possible image quality and the most efficient and error free rendering of vector objects.


This means that image PPI (pixels per inch) should be 150, both for color and grayscale images, and that complex vector objects must be simplified or flattened (as bitmap). Also note that InDesign effects such as drop-shadows, glow, special strokes, or transparency may not be fully supported.

Files published to issuu must be less than 500 pages and 100 MB.

Adding hyperlinks

There are two ways of adding hyperlinks to your publication:

● The easiest way is to use the issuu Link Editor after you've published your publication. Please see the help articles under issuu Clip for Publishers, for tips on how to use our link editor tool.

● You also have the possibility to add them using your favourite creation software (InDesign, QuarkExpress, etc), by including them directly in the working file. 

Indesign export settings

Depending on your content and Indesign version these are suggested guidelines.

NOTE: If you're using InDesign to create your publication, you can download this issuu Export Preset and add it to your presets, to ensure that during the export process, your PDF is issuu-ready, or follow the steps below if you'd like to set up the preset yourself.

1. Select File > Adobe PDF Presets > Define

2. Select 'New...' and set Preset Name to "issuu Export Preset" and Compability: Acrobat 6 (PDF 1.5)

3. 'General' settings

  • 'Optimize for Fast Web View': Enabled
  • 'Create Tagged PDF': Enabled
  • Export Layers: 'Visible layers'
  • Include 'Hyperlinks': Enabled

4. 'Compression' settings

  • Set Color, Grayscale and Monochrome images to 'Bicubic Downsampling to 150 pixels per inch for images over 150 pixels per inch.
  • Compress Text and Line Art: Enabled

5. Save your new issuu Export Preset and use it to save publications as PDF.

6. Publish to issuu. You can select to publish your publications as unlisted until you are ready to publish.


  • If a page is too heavy to render on issuu, replace vector graphics for that page with bitmap.

  • If your file is above 100 MB try lowering the PPI resolution for images.

  • For documents over 500 pages, split into multiple volumes.

  • To manage pages and spreads, read this article from InDesign.


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