Starting and growing an e-commerce can seem daunting. The skills for growing a successful online business go far beyond creating a great e-commerce website. The entrepreneur needs to learn the usual business basics plus content creation, data analytics, conversion funnels and more. Thankfully, you can find a wealth of information from those who have led before you. Here, we’ve compiled the 10 best e-commerce books for the entrepreneur to get you headed toward success in your e-commerce enterprise.
By Jeff Walker
This revised and expanded best-seller provides an in-depth look at your first steps toward success in e-commerce. That is, as the title suggests, how to prepare for the best launch you can imagine. Created for entrepreneurs, Launch systematically walks you through sales tactics, positive emotional triggers, pre-launch, audience-building and more. It guides you each step of the way, up to and including your final product launch. No matter what other books you choose to read from this list, be sure to include Launch. It will guide you through the early, critical stages of your online business development.
By Charles Camisasca
This beginner’s guide for e-commerce entrepreneurs covers all the essentials to get your online business off and running. Author Charles Camisasca breaks his guide into five fundamental sections:
- What product will I sell?
- How will I produce it?
- How will I deliver it to my customers?
- Who is my ideal customer?
- How do I convince them to become a repeat buyer and tell their friends about me?
In each case, he provides detailed tools to guide you along the way. You will learn the best business models for e-commerce, how to scale your online business and much more.
By Tanner Larsson
Tanner Larsson lives in e-commerce. In fact, he launched his first e-commerce business from his childhood bedroom in 2001. But he didn’t stop there. Larsson co-founded an e-commerce brand incubator, and he currently serves as the CEO of BuildGrowScale.com.
In Ecommerce Evolved, Larsson builds a case that most e-commerce businesses rely on vastly outdated business models. More importantly, he details a proven approach to meet the demands of the rapidly evolving e-commerce space. Topics covered include the principles of e-commerce, specialized strategy understanding and using your data, and marketing such as automated marketing campaigns. Don’t miss this opportunity for a detailed look behind the curtain of e-commerce.
By Cyndi Thomason and Mike Michalowicz
This may not be the book you want to read first. But it is likely the book you need to read. Subtitled “Transform Your E-commerce Business from a Cash-Eating Monster to a Money-Making Machine,” Profit First for Ecommerce Sellers provides the tools to grow your e-commerce profits.
For background, Mike Machalowicz created a business methodology called Profit First. It addresses the key struggles every business faces: managing inventory, relying on debt, understanding financial data and maintaining focus. From there, author Cyndi Thomason expertly tailors his approach to specifically address the e-commerce space. Using the experiences of three of her clients, she provides a clear, cogent and highly readable account critical to the e-commerce entrepreneur. Ready to profit? Profit First shows you how.
By Jason G. Miles
One of the great benefits of e-commerce for entrepreneurs lies in its affordability. While you may not have the resources to lease high-priced, commercial real estate, you can afford your own little piece of the World Wide Web. But to survive and to thrive, you need to know the best practices involved. Miles contends, for instance, that most e-commerce entrepreneurs fail due to not identifying a business niche.
“Instead of trying to invade someone else’s island,” writes Miles, “new sellers should work hard to identify a small opening in the market.” And this guide assists you with exactly that ideation process. Then, Miles further guides you through the best practices you need to know to succeed in the increasingly crowded e-commerce space. Ready to compete with the giants of the e-commerce industry?
By Joe Pulizzi
Suppose you have a great business plan. A great product. You even have an awesome e-commerce website. But a problem remains: you still need people to find you. Advertising can of course play a role in your marketing mix. But consider the value of content marketing as well with Content, Inc.
Content marketing has the advantages of growing your page views while also enhancing your reputation as an expert in your trade. Pulizzi guides you through content topic choice, channel choice, building customer loyalty, monetization tactics, and more. Taken together, you will learn to build an audience through your content. Plus, this updated edition contains what you need to know for the latest content trends on channels such as Snapchat, Instagram, and TikTok. Expand across channels and increase your product visibility and loyalty with Content, Inc.
By Neil Verma and Ren Moulton
Author Neil Verna believes that e-commerce has become lazy. That is, he sees an overreliance on paid acquisitions and other short-term methods that boost sales. But, he argues, those methods rarely lead to real customer loyalty. To win the long game requires building a brand.
As founder of eBrandBuilders, Verma uses evidence from a study of the top 100 e-commerce brands to help you develop your long-term plan. And he shows you how to do so without the thin profit margins created by a “quick sale at any cost” type of approach. His step-by-step guide instead provides the tool kits you need to scale your e-commerce business with retention to build profits. There’s even a section for creatives to assist in creating the right name, logo, look and feel to make your e-commerce brand stand out uniquely—and professionally—from the rest.
By David Nadler
Prior books on this list have walked you through the steps required to conceive, build, grow and market your e-commerce store. But one area in particular requires specific attention: conversion funnels. After all, conversions of product views into actual sales is your end goal. And The Perfect Conversion Funnel serves as the guide to get you there.
Owner of Automate and Convert digital marketing agency, Nadler works with leading online marketers in client acquisition and more. In his book, he details leading conversion funnels used by experts to grow their e-commerce endeavors many times over. Are you ready to learn about lead magnet, live webinar, quiz and assessment and other funnels used by the pros? Don’t miss this excellent guide for successful conversions.
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