The Top 3 Salesforce Books

Are there any Salesforce books out there that are any good? Given the vast amount of documentation the Salesforce website provides, along with hundreds of blogs (including our own resourceful Salesforce blog), it’s easy to think nobody would bother writing any good books on the topic? Well, that’s a common misconception often attributed to many popular, highly published topics. To my pleasant surprise, (given that I always emphasize the importance of literature), there are quite a few Salesforce books out there that aim to help you come to grips with this multifaceted system and become a super user of this powerful software. Given how flexible Salesforce is, versus other CRM applications (with its customizability, programmability and comprehensive API) … there’s an endless amount of information that covers the vast array of Salesforce topics. This is a good thing – if you choose the right books, that is. That’s what I’m here for; to point out the best books so you don’t have to go crawling all over the internet, searching for comments left by website users and analyzing reviews. #1 – Secrets of Success: Best Practices for Growth and Profitability (by David Taber) Taber understands Salesforce in a Jedi-like manner that frankly, I’m envious of; In his book, he takes you through a no-nonsense tour of Salesforce, with the mindset of optimal return on investment. He claims that by using existing features to garner growth in your business combined with the best customer service possible, you can enjoy ROI with minimal muss and fuss. His writing style may seem a tad dry, but considering this is a fairly technical if not heavy book, that’s forgivable. The sheer amount of information (high caliber information) in his book, makes up for his lecture-like writing style. If you want to get the most immediate value out of Salesforce, Taber claims to know the secret, and he’s willing to share it. #2 – for Dummies (Tom Wong, Liz Kao) I’m usually wary of recommending the “for dummies” series of books because of their reputation of being too simplistic. But, you know what? To heck with reputations and preconceptions, this is absolutely wonderful as a beginner’s guide to Salesforce and the world of CRM. The writing is comfortable, simple, informative, and not condescending; within a few days of steady reading, Tom can take someone who’s never heard of CRM, and turn them into an intermediate user of Salesforce. If you’re looking to dive into Salesforce, and don’t want to read blogs and tutorials, then this is your best bet. #3 – Behind The Cloud (Marc Benioff) This book is a little different, but I recommend it to anyone who really wants to understand the hurdles and obstacles that go into making a functional SaaS solution like Salesforce. Marc guides you on a journey that highlights the struggles and triumphs of building one of the most revolutionary innovations in web-based software known to man. His writing is invigorating, and this book is a page turner. If you want to be an expert of Salesforce, or any cloud-enabled SaaS solution, then you should read this book. Readers will not only understand how to use the software, but will also understand the software itself. Large amounts of online documentation exists for Salesforce. Despite this fact, Salesforce books are a great and useful asset.You can often learn things no amount of blogs and tutorials could ever teach you. Enjoy the recommendations and let me know what you think!  
Amanda is the Lead Author & Editor of Rainforce Blog. Amanda established the Rainforce blog to create a source for news and discussion about some of the issues, challenges, news, and ideas relating to Salesforce usage.