The best courses for small business owners can take any important topic and give you everything you need to become an expert.

No matter what stage of growth your business is in, there’s always something more to learn. Taking the time to expand your knowledge can give you a leg up against your competitors.

Here’s a list of the 10 best online business courses for entrepreneurs out there today.

 

Course Best for
How to Start Your Own Business Those interested in entrepreneurship
Startup and Small Business Law: Business Registration and More New or inexperienced entrepreneurs
Start a Profitable Online Business eCommerce startups
Understand SWOT Analysis in 30 Minutes First-time business owners
Modern Marketing with Seth Godin Owners who want to optimize their marketing strategy
Driving Traffic to Your Online Business Bloggers and online retailers
The Complete Introductory Course to Finance and Accounting New business owners without a bookkeeper/ accountant
Financing Options for Small Business Owners who need financing
Project Management Principles and Practices Any managing owner looking to optimize their processes
The Art of Less Doing All business owners looking for more time

How To Start Your Own Business

Offered by Michigan State University through Coursera, this fully-online business class is for entrepreneurs of any experience level.

The course takes you through everything you need to know about, you guessed it, starting your own business.

Instructors say you’ll learn about all of the topics necessary to create a successful business. These include getting in the right mindset, generating an idea, planning, strategy and taking action.

After completing the 6 courses, you should be ready to launch your own business.

Cost

You can sign up for a 7-day free trial with Coursera. After that, there is a $49 monthly fee. If for any reason you don’t want to continue, you can cancel anytime.

Who Should Take the Course?

If you’re thinking about starting your own business but aren’t sure what goes into it, this class is for you. Experienced Michigan State instructors guide you through the process so you can turn your ideas into a viable business model.

Startup and Small Business Law: Business Registration and More

Created by business coach Alex Genadinik and attorney Steve Pipenger, this online course gives small business owners the knowledge they need to navigate business law.

Offered by Udemy, this class delivers 3 hours of video instruction as well as articles and other downloadable materials.

You’ll learn how to register your business, including which business entity you should choose.

The course also touches on Internet privacy and intellectual property law, including patents, trademarks and copyrights.

For businesses with employees, it also goes over laws surrounding the hiring and firing of employees and their benefits.

Cost

The course is currently offered at a discounted price of $12.99.

Who Should Take the Course?

Having a grasp on business law can help any small business owner. But this online course is best for entrepreneurs looking to start their first business. The focus on registering a business and other essential legalese lends itself well to rookie small business owners.

Take online business courses for entrepreneurs like you.

Start a Profitable Online Business

Hosted on CreativeLive from creator/ instructor Lewis Howes, this class instructs you on how to launch a successful online business.

With over 14 HD video classes, the course covers all of the unique challenges that business owners face online, and shows you how to take them head-on. Lewis teaches most classes but brings in experts to cover topics like how to create a great product, social media marketing, building the right team and more.

After completing the course, you’ll be ready to generate leads and market your product online.

Cost

You can buy the whole course for $74 or pay $25 a month for access. CreativeLive also offers yearly passes that give you access to over 1,500 courses in its library.

Who Should Take the Course?

If you’re looking to get into the eCommerce market or want to learn more about optimizing your online business strategy, this course can give you what you need. And the video format is great for small business owners who learn visually.

Understand SWOT Analysis in 30 Minutes

A strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) analysis is one of the most common ways businesses asses their performance. If you aren’t sure what it is or want to get the most out of your analysis, this Udemy course is a great place to start.

This online class for small business owners teaches the concepts behind a SWOT analysis as well as its value to any project or business. You’ll learn what to include in your analysis to get the most out of it.

By the end of the 30-minute video class, you’ll have everything you need to put together a SWOT analysis for your business successfully.

Cost

Free.

Who Should Take the Course?

This is one of the best free online business courses for entrepreneurs at any stage, but it’s especially well-suited for new owners. A SWOT analysis can be a great tool to use in the early stages of business growth.

If you’re new to business ownership or think it can help you track performance, it’s more than worth it to take the half-hour to learn how to conduct a SWOT analysis for free.

Modern Marketing with Seth Godin

This online course is for business owners seeking expert advice on marketing to the 21st-century consumer. It’s taught by one of the most respected names in the business world today, Seth Godin.

Seth’s Modern Marketing workshop takes you through 45 lessons, over 6 hours of video and offers articles and other downloadable content. He stresses looking past fast tips and tricks, instead, focusing on completely understanding how marketing can help grow your business.

You’ll learn the basic best practices of marketing as well as ways to reach customers in the fast-paced, connected world of today.

Cost

Full access to the videos, articles and downloadable content costs $199.99. That’s the price you pay for 6-hours of advice from a bestseller and inductee into the Direct Marketing Hall of Fame.

Who Should Take the Course?

Because of the topic and quality of the instructor, it’s easy to say that any entrepreneur should take this course.

It’s an especially great course for small business owners who want to optimize their marketing strategy for today’s consumer. Seth goes in-depth on what customers expect and how to empathize with them, which is important as their wants and needs continue to shift.

Driving Traffic to Your Online Business

Instructed by another big name in marketing, Neil Patel, Driving Traffic to Your Online Business teaches you how to optimize your digital marketing strategy.

Where Seth Godin’s course focuses on overall strategies and reaching customers, Neil’s lessons are driven by increasing your online footprint.

This course gives small business owners tips on increasing traffic and leads through search engine optimization, social media strategy and more.

Completion of the course delivers ready-made solutions you can immediately use to increase traffic and drive customers to your business.

Cost

The current cost is only $36 for 10 video lessons.

Who Should Take the Course?

Bloggers and eCommerce businesses could learn how to drastically increase their traffic and social media engagement from these lessons.

It’s also one of the best courses for small business owners who want to learn how they can use content marketing to help drive customers to their brick-and-mortar storefronts.

The Complete Introductory Course to Finance and Accounting

Learn the basics with the Complete Introductory Course to Finance and Accounting on Udemy.

This course offers 6.5 hours of video instruction, articles and over 80 downloadable resources for continued learning. You’ll learn everything you need, including business finance terminology, financial statement creation and reporting, the accounting cycle, business taxes and more.

Cost

The course has a list price of $199.99 but is generally offered with a significant discount. It currently sits at $11.99.

Who Should Take the Course?

If you don’t have an accounting background or plan to have a full-time accountant on hand for your startup, it’s a good idea to learn everything you can.

Understanding basic business accounting and financing is critical to tracking and reporting, which makes this a great course for new small business owners.

Financing Options for Small Business

The Small Business Administration (SBA) created Financing Options for Small Business to explain the basics of securing small business loans and other ways to raise capital.

You’ll learn how to determine your financial needs and where to turn to find money. Topics include small business grants, angel investors, venture capitalists, crowdfunding and more.

You can follow the course through slides or a transcript, completing worksheets that allow you to test your knowledge on business financing.

Cost

Free.

Who Should Take the Course?

This free online business course is for small business owners who need financing but don’t know where to begin. If you need cash to get through a slow season or fund your next project, this free course can get you on the right track before reaching out to financiers.

Taking online business courses for entrepreneurs.

Project Management Principles and Practices

Another specialization course from Coursera, Project Management Principles and Practices, tackles the best way to optimize your business’s processes.

Completing the course will give you proven ways to identify, plan and execute your next project.

Topics include budgeting, resource allocation and defining potential risks.

Cost

You can utilize Coursera’s 7-day free trial before being charged $49 per month. You can cancel anytime.

Who Should Take the Course?

This business course is for small business owners involved in operations.

Being able to identify and solve issues in your process can generate improvements to your products and sales, something any managing owner would like to see.

The Art of Less Doing

Taught by achievement and efficiency expert Ari Meisel, The Art of Less Doing teaches you how to take charge of your time and get more done.

You’ll learn how to identify time-consuming projects and come up with creative ways to lessen their effects on your day. Ari will help you build strategies to get through your busywork more efficiently, opening you up to focus on more challenging and important tasks.

Cost

Access to the class is $36, or you can subscribe to the CreativeLive library for $25 a month.

Who Should Take the Course?

Any business owner can take advantage of this online course. We all wish we had more time in the day to get things done. Learning strategies to add time to your busy schedule can put your focus back on growing your business.

Getting the Most from Online Business Courses

To choose which course for small business owners is right for you, consider what fits the position you’re currently in.

If you have a business idea but aren’t sure where to start, choose one of the courses focusing on startups. As you grow, you can learn more about accounting, marketing and project management.

When you sign on to take a course, make sure to give it your best effort. If it’s a course that has tests and worksheets, make sure you’re studying. If the course is a series of videos, it’s still a good idea to take as many notes as possible so you can review later.

The point of taking one of these classes is to expand your knowledge and make you a better business owner. Putting in the right amount of effort will give you a great return on your investment—and will pay dividends when you grow your business.

 

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