Right now is the perfect time to take advantage of the free learning tools available to you. With this in mind, we’re bringing you 10 free ways to grow your business skills online during COVID-19 — and beyond.
FREE WAYS TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS SKILLS ONLINE
It’s important to note that while all of these are free, almost all of them also have a paid version as well. These were selected because they have a robust and excellent catalog of free training content online that is perfect for curious small business owners like yourself.
Each of these resources can help you advance your career and grow your business.
Hubspot is considered one of the best resources for inbound marketing, sales, customer service, and more. Their free courses are meant to attract people to their services, but they are great as a stand-alone resource. The format is easy to use and the content is top-notch. Hubspot Academy has dozens for free courses that range from a few minutes to over six hours. Some have both free and paid certification, but the full course is available for free.
From digital marketing and advertising to content strategy and more, their courses are more than just training for their product and services.
Yoast is an industry leader when it comes to SEO. (You may already be using their popular plugin on your WordPress site.) Their academy covers all topics related to SEO and optimizing all aspects of your website. This means it helps customers find your website online and helps you learn to improve everything from content to load time.
The Yoast Academy comes with paid certifications and annual subscriptions, but their free program has high-quality content that would take your SEO knowledge and your website’s overall health to the next level. This is something you should know about even if an outside company handles your website because it will help you understand how to create the right content for your website.
If the academy doesn’t sound like something you want to commit to, consider at least subscribing to their incredibly helpful YouTube channel.
Google has amazing free training tools available for business owners — including a newly launched Google Air Online, but right now we’re specifically talking about the Google Analytics Academy. Learn how to understand and benefit from what Google Analytics can offer you.
Whether you’re a total novice or you’re wanting to learn deeper levels of tracking business performance, this tool is perfect for you. At the very least, you’ll understand how to set up your Google Analytics and find out who is coming to your site, how long are they staying, and where they are from. This helps you determine where to focus your digital marketing — or even how to fix a bad website process that keeps your customers from buying from you. It’s too good a resource to pass up — and there’s no better time to learn than now!
4. MOZ ACADEMY
Moz Academy is another great resource at the top of their industry. You are able to select the difficulty level (such as novice, general understanding,etc.) and SEO topic you want to learn more about, which is a big selling point for this online training. While their library is not as extensive as HubSpot, they make up for it with in-depth content on SEO and website optimization.
Their SEO library topics include keywords, backlinks, local, site audit, page optimization and more.
The content from edX comes from the world’s best higher education organizations including MIT, Harvard, Sorbonne, University of Queensland, and Georgetown, to name a few. If that wasn’t good enough, their courses are basically the equivalent of getting your masters on any business or marketing topic.
They have hundreds of free courses available, but as with most of these options, certifications must be paid for. Some of the best topics for business owners include corporate finance, leadership training, project management, and a wide variety of marketing training.
Coursera is another academically-focused way to grow your business skills online. The training comes in the form of hundreds of topics.
One of their most popular free courses that you might enjoy is Successful Negotiation Strategies, where you get to develop negotiation skills. What business owner doesn’t need that?
Similar to edX, the courses are free. You can obtain certificates of completion at a minor cost, but all the content and training itself is free.
7. CODE ACADEMY
Have you ever wanted to learn to code so you can work on your own website? Maybe you want to learn more so that you can communicate better with the people who work on your site? Code Academy is where you can learn to code for free — or tailor your coding education for your needs. This may not be for everyone, but it’s definitely an interesting opportunity!
8. SMALL BIZ U
Small Biz U has a library of full-length courses for the education and training of small business owners and entrepreneurs. These courses typically range from three to four hours on average.
Topics include Understanding Intellectual Property, Conducting Market Research, and Pricing Strategies. The biggest selling point here is that this content is meant to be very practical and provide immediate impact for business owners like yourself.
It’s tried and tested — and it’s proven to be helpful. The SBA has an extensive library of resources and training in their online Learning Center. Whether you’re trying to grow your business or launch one — or just brush up on current practices, the SBA Learning Center is for you!
Alison offers free online courses from the world’s leading experts in business, technology, marketing, etc.
What is great about Alison is their selection of business topics from operations and supply chain management to finance and business communications. They have specific and high-level business content, which you can use to grow your business skills online!
Another resource like Alison is Udemy. They also has a wide range of free courses on topics that can help you grow you business skills online. Consider their free series on learning Excel. This is a very underrated tool for small business owners and a great resource to check out.
BONUS — WED SOCIETY
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Written by Corrie McGee