When it comes to e-commerce, there is always something new to learn.
Whether you’re just getting started in the industry or you’ve been selling online for years, there are always new strategies and tactics to explore.
And one of the best ways to stay on top of the latest trends and learn new tips and tricks is to read e-commerce books.
There are dozens of great books about e-commerce, but it can be tough to know which ones are worth your time. To help you stay ahead of the curve, we’ve put together a list of 13 of the best e-commerce books that every online store owner should read in 2023.
These books cover a wide range of topics, from hands-on e-commerce experience and consumer psychology to product strategy and customer service. No matter what your focus is, you’re sure to find something helpful in this list.
13 Best Books on E-commerce
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon by Brad Stone
Amazon has become one of the most powerful companies in the world, and it all started with a simple idea: to sell books online. In this riveting behind-the-scenes story, author Brad Stone takes us inside Amazon’s headquarters and gives us an intimate look at the man behind the empire, Jeff Bezos.
Bezos is known for his visionary leadership and ruthless business tactics, and this book offers readers a rare glimpse into his thinking. If you want to understand how Amazon took over e-commerce—and what they might do next—this is a must-read. The Everything Store tells the story of Amazon’s incredible rise from a small online bookstore to a global e-commerce powerhouse.
It’s an inside look at how Jeff Bezos built Amazon into the company it is today, and it’s packed with lessons that any e-commerce entrepreneur can learn from.
Sam Walton: Made in America by Sam Walton and John Huey
This is the story of Sam Walton, the man who founded Walmart, one of the largest and most successful companies in the world. In this autobiography, Walton chronicles his humble beginnings in rural Arkansas, his early successes in retail, and his eventual expansion into a nationwide chain of stores.
Walton shares his unique insights on everything from customer service and marketing to recruiting, building partnerships, and creating a culture. If you want to learn from one of the greatest retailers of all time, this book is a must-read ultimate guide.
Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness by Cass R. Sunstein and Richard H. Thaler
This book is about how we make decisions—and how we can make better ones. In Nudge, authors Cass Sunstein and Richard Thaler explore the science of decision-making and show us how to use “nudges” to influence people’s choices.
From choosing healthy foods to saving for retirement, the book offers a wealth of useful insights on how to make better decisions. And while the focus is on individual decision-making, the concepts can also be applied to businesses and organizations.
If you want to understand why people make their choices—and how you can influence them—this is a must-read.
Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose by Tony Hsieh
In this book, Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh shares his unconventional ideas on customer service, company culture, and building a successful business.
Hsieh takes us on a tour of Zappos’s incredible growth, from its early days as a start-up to its eventual sale to Amazon for $1.2 billion. Along the way, he shares the unique philosophies that have made Zappos one of the most beloved companies in the world.
If you want to learn how to build a company with happy customers and employees, this is the book for you.
Contagious: Why Things Catch On by Jonah Berger
In Contagious, Jonah Berger reveals the science behind why things catch on. He shares six key principles that make products, ideas, and behaviors more likely to spread—and shows us how we can use these concepts to make our own products and ideas more contagious.
Whether you’re trying to get more people to buy your product, looking to market a new product, trying to make a social impact, or just want to understand why some things go viral while others fizzle out, this book will give you insights you need to make your ideas stick.
Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike by Phil Knight
In this memoir, Nike founder Phil Knight tells the story of how he started the company with just $50 in his bank account. It’s an inspiring story of entrepreneurship, risk-taking, and perseverance, and it’s packed with valuable lessons on building successful businesses.
Knight takes us on a wild ride, from Nike’s early days as a start-up to its eventual domination of the global athletic footwear market. Along the way, he shares his insights on marketing, product development, and what it takes to build a lasting company.
If you’re looking for inspiration to start your own business—or if you just want to learn from one of the most successful entrepreneurs of all time—this is a must-read.
Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game by Michael Lewis
This book is about the power of data and analytics. It tells the story of how Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane used sabermetrics—the statistical analysis of baseball—to build a winning team on a shoestring budget.
Moneyball is a fascinating look at how data can be used to gain a competitive advantage. It’s also an inspiring story of Beane’s underdog A’s, who went from one of the worst teams in baseball to perennial contenders.
The book has become a cult classic among baseball fans, businesspeople, and anyone who’s looking for an edge in their field. This is a must-read if you want to learn how to use data to make better decisions.
Hit Makers: The Science of Popularity in an Age of Distraction by Derek Thompson
In this book, Atlantic senior editor Derek Thompson takes us on a tour of the “attention economy” and explains how some products and ideas become massively popular while others flop.
Thompson delves into the science of popularity and shares insights on why some things go viral while others fail to catch on. He also debunks some common myths about what makes something popular and offers practical advice on making your own products and ideas more successful.
This is a must-read if you want to understand why some things are popular and how you can make your own products more successful.
Convert!: Designing Web Sites to Increase Traffic and Conversion by Benjamin Hunt
In this book, web designer and developer Benjamin Hunt breaks down the process of designing and building effective websites. He shares his approach to “conversion-centered design,” which is all about creating websites that are optimized for conversions—meaning, they get visitors to take the desired action, whether it’s signing up for a newsletter or buying a product.
Hunt walks us through the process of designing and building a conversion-centered website from start to finish. He also shares tips on how to split-test different elements of your website to find out what works best.
If you want to learn how to design websites that convert visitors into customers, this is the book for you.
Don't Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability by Steve Krug
In this classic book on web design, Steve Krug makes a case for “common sense” design—a design that is simple, intuitive, and easy to use. He shares his approach to designing websites that are easy for users to navigate and understand.
Krug’s book is packed with practical advice on making your website more user-friendly. He covers topics like navigation, usability testing, and visual hierarchy. This is a great place to start if you want to learn how to design better websites.
E-commerce Evolved: The Essential Playbook to Build, Grow, and Scale a Successful E-commerce Business by Tanner Larsson
In this book, Tanner Larsson shares his approach to building and growing successful e-commerce business. He covers topics like product selection, marketing, scaling, and more.
Larsson’s book is packed with practical advice on everything you need to do to build a successful e-commerce business. If you’re looking for a step-by-step guide to starting and growing e-commerce business, this is the book for you.
Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built by Duncan Clark
In this book, business author Duncan Clark tells the story of Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba, and how he built it into the world’s one of the largest e-commerce companies.
Clark offers an inside look at Alibaba’s early days, when Ma was working out of his apartment in Hangzhou, China. He shares how Ma built Alibaba into a behemoth that now rivals Amazon and eBay.
This is a must-read for anyone interested in e-commerce in the Chinese market or Chinese business in general.
Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul by Howard Schultz and Joanne Gordon
In this book, Starbucks founder and CEO Howard Schultz tells the story of how he took the company from near bankruptcy back to profitability.
Schultz shares his vision for Starbucks and how he fought to keep it true to its roots while expanding rapidly around the world. He also offers insights on leadership, management, and running a successful business.
This is a great read for anyone interested in business turnaround stories or coffee.
The Bottom Line
If you’re looking for books that will help you understand and succeed in e-commerce, these 12 titles are a great place to start.
They cover everything from web design and user experience to product selection and different aspects of marketing - online marketing, social media marketing, traditional marketing, etc.
So whether you’re just getting started in e-commerce or you’re looking to take your business to the next level, by reading these books, you’ll gain a better understanding of the e-commerce landscape, get insights and practical advice you need to succeed, and learn how to build a successful online business.