This year has been nothing short of a disaster for e-commerce stocks. Growth in the sector has nearly ground to a halt due to macroeconomic headwinds and tough comparisons to the pandemic boom, and stock prices have plunged across the sector.

However, there could be good news coming shortly. Wells Fargo's Brian Fitzgerald recently issued a note stating that he saw e-commerce growth starting to accelerate and that sales trends in e-commerce and brick-and-mortar stores would normalize. Prior to the pandemic, e-commerce was growing by about 15% annually.

While recessionary headwinds could strengthen next year, e-commerce stocks will benefit from easier comparisons. You can take advantage of the sell-off with Amazon (AMZN 0.38%), Shopify (SHOP 4.55%), and MercadoLibre (MELI -1.55%). Each of these e-commerce stocks looks poised for a comeback.

Person holding a credit card and shopping online.

Image source: Getty Images.

1: Amazon

Amazon may seem like an obvious choice in e-commerce stocks, but it is also unusually cheap right now. Shares just hit a 52-week low, and the stock is trading lower than in early 2020 before the pandemic started.

While Amazon does face some challenges, it seems sufficiently priced into the stock, considering it now trades at a price-to-sales ratio of 1.8. The stock has not been cheaper since before the company broke out Amazon Web Services (AWS) as a separate business segment in 2015. That lifted the valuation by showing the cloud computing division was highly profitable.

Despite a rough 2022, there are reasons to think things could improve next year. Amazon is slashing costs like never before. The company has laid off 10,000 corporate employees, cut new businesses like Amazon Care, and closed or canceled dozens of warehouses, which should help improve the company's profitability. AWS also continues to grow briskly, and the bottom line should improve in e-commerce -- where it has lost over $8 billion in the first three quarters of the year -- as it rebalances costs and continues growing.

Amazon still has plenty of competitive advantages, which will eventually become more apparent in the company's results. It's a mistake to think the company won't return to its earlier profitability levels.

2: Shopify

Shopify has been hit harder than most e-commerce stocks this year, as shares of the e-commerce software leader are down 73% year to date.

That sell-off has come as revenue growth has slowed and profits have flipped back to losses. However, Shopify's long-term potential still looks promising. The company is delivering solid growth, with revenue up 21% on a currency-neutral basis over Black Friday weekend, at $7.5 billion in gross merchandise volume.

Shopify also remains the clear leader in e-commerce software, serving more than a million merchants, and is well ahead of rivals like BigCommerce and WooCommerce. In other words, the company should continue to grow as small- and medium-sized businesses launch online retail stores, and large ones adopt Shopify's tools.

Amazon's Buy with Prime program, which some feared as a threat to Shopify's business, also seems to be falling flat. Shopify stock looks reasonably priced if its growth can reaccelerate at a price-to-sales ratio of less than 9.

3: MercadoLibre

Unlike its U.S.-based counterparts, MercadoLibre has continued to deliver strong growth in 2022, overcoming headwinds related to 2021 comparisons and the macroeconomic slowdown.

MercadoLibre's performance owes partly to its exposure to the MercadoPago payments business, which has grown rapidly, with a 76% increase to $32.2 billion in total payment volume in the third quarter. MercadoPago not only serves MercadoLibre's online marketplace sellers but also has a large offline business providing point-of-sale machines to brick-and-mortar retailers.

Meanwhile, its e-commerce business continues to put up rapid growth, with gross merchandise volume up 32% to $8.6 billion. MercadoLibre's profit margins are also expanding, thanks to the scalability of its marketplace and payments businesses. In the third quarter, it reported an operating margin of 11%, and operating income jumped to $296 million.

Despite that strong performance, the stock is down 32% year to date, and with profits ramping up, MercadoLibre could soon look like a bargain. If the company can maintain its growth and expand its margins, the stock has nowhere to go but up.