How to Create a Back of Book Index

A book index is simply a key to locating information contained in a book. It is also known as back-of-the-book index. A good Index will help increase your book sales. When someone wants to buy a book he looks in the index of many books searching for an answer to a problem he is facing. If he finds the title of his answer in the Index of one of those books, he orders it. A well done index is what sells a book.


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    Review your book, copy all terms and phrases you want to see in the book Index, and save them in a text file.
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    Choose a program to write and design your book index. You can use Microsoft Word or Adobe InDesign, but locating your index terms will take a long time. There is a tool called PDF Index Generator that will locate your words faster and write the final index to your PDF book.
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    Open PDF Index Generator and define your list of terms that you have collected from your book.
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    Command the program to generate the book index using this list of terms only.
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    After the generation is done you will see a table of results. It will show each term, and the pages it exists in.
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    You can then edit those results, define header and sub-header terms.
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    Choose a design template for your final index that suits your book.
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    Finally, specify where to write the final index. You can write it in a new PDF to see how it will look like, or to a text file, or you can directly append it to your already finished book ... To be ready to be published.


  • Remember that, when creating an index, concepts and ideas not explicitly in the text should also be included, as you have to think of how a reader will look for information he or she needs to find when he or she does not know the exact term or wording used. This is also known as cross-referencing.
  • It will be a good idea if you made every term in your index a link, so when a user clicks on it, it would take him to the page it refers to.


  • For very common terms throughout your work, be wary of repetition.

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Categories: Publishing | Writing