The Top Customer Experience Books (Updated December 2021)

most popular customer experience books

The Top Customer Experience Books (Updated December 2021)

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Adam Ramshaw
Adam Ramshaw has been helping companies to improve their Net Promoter® and Customer Feedback systems for more than 15 years. He is on a mission to stamp out ineffective processes and bad surveys.
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This regularly updated post provides links to the most popular (defined below) books on CX and related areas, along with their authors, ratings and prices.

While there are many ways this list could be ordered, it is ordered by number of ratings on Amazon. Sometimes this says more about how long a book has been in publication or how good a promoter the publisher happens to be, but with the rating score alongside you can get a flavour for the overall strength of the title.

The list has also been separated into two sections:

  • Generalist: books directly about CX, mostly by consultants and experts. They will include background information with general “how-to” sections, approaches, case studies, etc.
  • Tools and methodologies: these could also be called textbooks. They outline in detail how to do a particular task, e.g. journey mapping, service design. etc.

To be considered for this list, books need to be available in Kindle format and still available for purchase.

Note that prices and ratings are based on the Amazon Australia site, however the ratings are typically gathered from global purchasers. Of course you can also get these books from Amazon competitors, but their volumes and prices were used in the ranking.

The Global Top 20 Customer Experience Books
  1. Generalist CX Books
  2. CX Tools and Methodology Books

Generalist CX Books

The Effortless Experience: Conquering the New Battleground for Customer Loyalty

Focused on contact centres and how to make the customer experience as low effort as possible. Discusses Customer Effort Score (CES).

  • Author: Matthew Dixon, Nicholas Toman, Rick DeLisi
  • Reviews: 372
  • Rating: 4.5
  • Price: AUD16.99

Outside In: The Power of Putting Customers at the Center of Your Business

A popular and often referenced handbook for CX practitioners that starts by examining the business value of CX. It then goes on to outline six important customer experience disciplines.

  • Author: Harley Manning, Kerry Bodine
  • Reviews: 232
  • Rating: 4.5
  • Price: AUD8.56

Customer Satisfaction is Worthless Customer Loyalty is Priceless

Personally, I think this book is thin on specific approaches and long on platitudes and common sense; delivered in short sentences and varied fonts. I’m inclined to call it a Twitter-ook.

  • Author: Jeffrey Gitomer
  • Reviews: 174
  • Rating: 4.4
  • Price: AUD10.42

The Ten Principles Behind Great Customer Experiences

An introduction to customer experience principles and their importance in modern business. Backed up with 10 general principles to keep close at hand in your journey.

  • Author: Matt Watkinson
  • Reviews: 153
  • Rating: 4.6
  • Price: AUD17.96

Chief Customer Officer 2.0: How to Build Your Customer-Driven Growth Engine

A good mix of tools, background and governance/leadership approaches but with a tendency to be wordy and repetitive in delivery.

  • Author: Jeanne Bliss
  • Reviews: 127
  • Rating: 4.4
  • Price: AUD36.15

The Customer Centricity Playbook: Implement a Winning Strategy Driven by Customer Lifetime Value

A decent introduction to the topic of customer centricity and customer lifetime value but don’t expect a playbook you can break out word for word.

  • Author: Peter Fader, Sarah Toms
  • Reviews: 90
  • Rating: 4.4
  • Price: AUD15.70

What Customers Crave: How to Create Relevant and Memorable Experiences at Every Touchpoint

Focuses on customer journeys and customer types. The author reduces the journey to four core steps which I think is over simplifying it a little but it does connect with the Peak End rule of journeys.

  • Author: Nicholas J. Webb
  • Reviews: 79
  • Rating: 4.1
  • Price: AUD16.99

The Experience Economy: Competing for Customer Time, Attention, and Money

Updated from the original edition this book takes lessons from the big names and provides an approach you can use in your own business.

  • Author: James H. Gilmore, B. Joseph Pine II
  • Reviews: 76
  • Rating: 4.6
  • Price: AUD32.36

Would You Do That to Your Mother?

32 specific “Make Mom Proud” lessons, each with a accompanying case study.

  • Author: Jeanne Bliss
  • Reviews: 59
  • Rating: 4.5
  • Price: AUD18.99

The Customer Experience Manual ePub eBook: The Customer Experience Book

Contrary to it’s title this book is not really a how-to manual and talks in broader terms about CX and it’s importance.

  • Author: Alan Pennington
  • Reviews: 52
  • Rating: 4.2
  • Price: AUD14.57

Customer Experience: 22 international CX professionals share their current strategies for achieving impact and visibility using best practice CX

An anthology of CX insights and best practices from consultants and practitioners divided into themes.

  • Author: Andrew Priestley (Editor)
  • Reviews: 38
  • Rating: 4.5
  • Price: AUD5.46

The Convenience Revolution: How to Deliver a Customer Service Experience that Disrupts the Competition and Creates Fierce Loyalty

Shep is a prolific writer on customer experience and customer service. In this book he shares six principles to improve both.

  • Author: Shep Hyken
  • Reviews: 39
  • Rating: 4.6
  • Price: AUD15.70

Ignore Your Customers (and They’ll Go Away)

This book has quite good ratings and the other reviewers are positive but it’s bit pop’y for my tastes.

  • Author: Micah Solomon
  • Reviews: 40
  • Rating: 4.5
  • Price: AUD16.99

It’s All about CEX!: The Essential Guide to Customer and Employee Experience

This book has mixed reviews but a strong endorsement from service industry legend Shep Hyken – and for me that counts for quite a bit.

  • Author: Jason S Bradshaw
  • Reviews: 19
  • Rating: 4.4
  • Price: AUD9.99

Customer Understanding: Three Ways to Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience (and at the Heart of Your Business)

An experienced CX practitioner, Annette takes you on a journey from business case to execution. This book is a practical guide not a theoretical discussion.

  • Author: Annette Franz
  • Reviews: 19
  • Rating: 4.7
  • Price: AUD33.63

CX Tools and Methodology Books

This is Service Design Thinking: Basics-Tools-Cases

Edited content from 23 industry professionals. A great introduction to service design thinking and a useful resource for CX folks.

Note: although the price below is for the Kindle version it might be better to get a hard copy as formatting of some diagrams is inconsistent.

  • Editor/Author: Jakob Schneider, Marc Stickdorn
  • Reviews: 283
  • Rating: 4.4
  • Price: AUD33.00

The Ultimate Question 2.0 (Revised and Expanded Edition): How Net Promoter Companies Thrive in a Customer-Driven World

The quintessential book on Net Promoter Score by it’s co-inventors. A must read for anyone in CX – whether you think NPS is great or you think it’s terrible read this book to understand exactly what you hate or love.

  • Author: Fred Reichheld , Rob Markey
  • Reviews: 252
  • Rating: 4.6
  • Price: AUD25.74

Mapping Experiences: A Complete Guide to Customer Alignment Through Journeys, Blueprints, and Diagrams

A good “how-to” map customer customer experiences and align to your organisation. This book helps your team to use alignment diagrams to turn customer observations into actionable insights.

Note: although the price below is for the Kindle version it might be better to get a hard copy as the book has a lot of diagrams.

  • Author: James Kalbach
  • Reviews: 62
  • Rating: 4.4
  • Price: AUD33.39

Designing Experiences

A practical book that will help you to deliberately design better customer experiences.

  • Author: J. Robert Rossman
  • Reviews: 37
  • Rating: 4.6
  • Price: AUD15.49
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