You might be a great side hustler making a ton of dough, but if you want to build a scalable and saleable online business that runs without your active involvement in the long run, you want to have fundamental business knowledge and some digital skills.
As part of the best books series, I also want to feature some books on online business that are great for seasoned and first time entrepreneurs alike.
If you’re not only looking to read books about online business, check out our recommended books.
Online Business Books To Read
1. The Millionaire Fastlane by MJ DeMarco
Even though it doesn’t sound like a business book title. This amazing book is one of my top 13 books. MJ Demarco is one of my favourite authors of all time and this book literally changed the way I think about business. If you’re new to business or you want to bring your business to the next level, read this book.
2. Built To Last by Jim Collins & Jerry I. Poras
This book studies the great companies that are built in a way to transcend their founders. Backed by tons of empirical data, if you’re wondering how to build the next Disney – this book is a must read. The authors gives a ton of great insights backed with research on how to build a company that’ll last more than a hundred years.
3. The Lean Startup by Eric Ries
Sometimes called the bible of Silicone Valley startups, this book teaches you the “correct” way of building a business, which is to launch fast, fail fast and most importantly, learn fast so you can improve and re-iterate faster.
4. The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss
Tim Ferriss is a award winning podcaster and author. He is most known for this book, which teaches people how to manage their time efficiently when building a career. Get insider tips on outsourcing, time management and productivity hacks that Tim himself uses. All in all, a great book but I have to say that not all the teachings are relevant to every industry. That being said, it’s still a fantastic book for learning time management.
5) Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It by Chris Voss & Tahl Raz
Negotiation is a big part in business. When it comes to partnerships, dealmaking, hiring amongst the many other things, negotiation is an important skill to pick up as an entrepreneur. If you’re interested in learning from a negotiator with tons of experience handling FBI cases, check out this book.
6. The 1-Page Marketing Plan: Get New Customers, Make More Money, And Stand Out From The Crowd by Allan Dib
Having a marketing plan is essential in ANY business you’d like to start. This book will help you distill the most important things you need to include into your business’ marketing plan – like crafting marketing messages, unique selling proposition and how to allocate resources into marketing channels that will bring you the best results. A must have for noob entrepreneurs who want to learn the art and science of marketing plan development.
7. The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy
While this isn’t strictly a business book, the thought-provoking argument that the author brings to the table in this book is that if you’re looking to make a change for the better (could be business, life or relationships), it has to start with behavioural change.
How you and your business behave on a day to day basis adds up to success significantly. When it comes to building businesses – it’s the process, not “success” events that count.
7. Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk
Since social media consumption is on the rise, I’m sure you know that any business would need a solid, engaging social media presence. This book will teach you how to build your (business’) social presence online by giving away valuable information (the jabs). For every 3 valuable information you’ve given away for free, put in a sales post for people who have found value in what you’ve shared.
Who else would you rather learn from other than the master hustler GaryVee himself? Master the art of social media marketing by reading this book.
8. Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen by Donald Miller
The media landscape is getting more crowded than ever. As such, crafting a clear and compelling story about your brand becomes extremely important to stand out among the crowd. Instead of building a brand, you want to build a StoryBrand to cut through the clutter.
9. The Barefoot Executive by Carrie Wilkerson
Building businesses isn’t always about the suit & tie. I’ve been running my own businesses for the past 4 years in the comfort of my own plain Ts and boxers (sometimes). The Barefoot Executive is a book that I highly recommend online entrepreneurs read and try to understand the lifestyle of being your own boss, making a million bucks and achieving freedom without dressing up or living like someone you’re not.
10. Will It Fly? by Pat Flynn
Are you wondering if your business idea will take off? Are you plagued by anxiety and stress because you just can’t seem to figure it out? You can’t most of the time, but part of an entrepreneur’s job is to manage these risks.
If you want to manage the risk of committing resources (time and money) into a business idea that you’re not sure would fly or not, read this book. You’ll be able to design cheap experiments and discover resource-efficient ways to test your business idea before you go knee-deep.
These are all amazing books that I think every new or seasoned entrepreneur who are serious about making their business work should read. Once again, you don’t have to read all of them, pick out which one best fits your current situation. Most importantly, implement your learnings. Knowledge without implementation is just knowledge.
To discover more books, check out this page for more book recommendations.