The 5 Best Books on E-Commerce Strategy


Some of the most frequently asked questions we get from e-merchants are about e-commerce strategy.

What’s the best e-commerce strategy for someone just starting up an online store? What’s the best e-commerce strategy for a dropshipping business? What’s the best strategy to scale an e-commerce business?

There are no simple answers to these questions, and the questions themselves need more refinement before one can give a helpful answer. One thing we can do, however, is give readers some recommendations for the best books on e-commerce strategy.

Here, then, is a selection of books to guide a questioning e-commerce manager with the answers they seek. We’ve curated the selection to include mostly recent books (<5 years old), because the industry itself has been undergoing so many transformations that early books on the subject may steer people in the wrong direction sometimes, even if the underlying foundation is sound.

All links and excerpted reviews are from Amazon, and verified as genuine (not fake) reviews.

Josh Highland’s Shopify Empire is for sellers looking to scale up, putting a heavy emphasis on marketing and site optimization. Starting from the structuring of your online store, this comprehensive book covers

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO) basics
  • On-site optimization
  • Off-site optimization
  • Social Media Optimization (SMO) basics,
  • Pay Per Click (PPC) tips
  • Advanced SEO, SEO troubleshooting, and SEO research techniques

The book gets a glowing review from the CPO of Shopify, no less – a weighty endorsement at the very least.

Product Research 101 cover

Renae Clark’s Product Research 101 is written for the new or struggling seller wanting to source wholesale or private label products. Lessons include:

  • Basic steps for finding top selling products
  • How to generate product ideas
  • How to spot trends
  • How to validate demand
  • Tips for finding suppliers
  • Analyzing data to help you pick a product

Brett Standard’s independently published E-Commerce Business is divided into two parts, Shopify and Dropshipping, for merchants who want to get started with both. It includes step-by-step instructions for getting set up with Shopify and a list of his top recommended apps, including their prices and when you might need them. Standard is a serial entrepreneur who’s published several books on e-commerce and the fine art of the side hustle.

“This book covers everything you need to consider when doing research on starting a new business. It’s a great resource to get an overview of the start-up process.” ….” well written and organized…. worth the read.”

Cover of Ecommerce Strategy Evolved

In Tanner Larsson’s E-Commerce Evolved, you will learn everything that goes into a front end sales funnel, a back end sales funnel, marketing, re-targeting, the Don’ts of advertising, how to do market research, product research, price research, find suppliers, and build ideas for niches/products. This book will give you all the tools to take action if you’re serious about making your goals happen.

Cover image of the Amazon Roadmap

McGinn and Segal’s Amazon Road Map demonstrates the authors’ combined decades of experience with digital commerce. It outlines the key answers you need to know to plan for your brand’s successful Amazon launch from start to finish, and to ensure continued growth.

According to one review, “The authors write clearly and in considerable detail, breaking down processes into easily understood steps and providing practical checklists. They recognize the ever-shifting and evolving nature of the Amazon landscape and focus on core principles to guide those launching brands.”

There are several more books available on dropshipping and e-commerce topics, but these are the five best books on e-commerce, IOHO.

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