12 Free Online Management Courses for Small Business Owners


12 Free Online Management Courses for Small Business Owners

As a small business owner, there’s always something new to learn. Whether you’re a seasoned entrepreneur or just starting, learning a new skill can massively boost your business’ potential – and taking a small business management course is a great way to do just that.

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How a free Online Business Management Courses can help your business

Gone are the days when you had to sit in a classroom to learn – business and management courses have become increasingly digitalized over the past few years. You can now complete an entire course online, fitting it around your schedule and opting to learn in a way that suits you best.

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For small businesses, in particular, there are so many reasons and benefits to take an online management course:

  • Stay up-to-date with the latest developments and trends
  • Learn new marketing strategies
  • Learn employee management techniques
  • Understand issues facing small business and how to overcome them.

Starting a Business: Vision and Opportunity

This free online course is a brilliant resource for aspiring or newly established small business owners. Starting a Business: Vision and Opportunity are led by Professor of Entrepreneurship Nigel Lockett.

What topics will you cover?

  • The entrepreneurial learning cycle
  • How to write a successful working business plan 
  • Understanding the role of vision and opportunity in business

Essentials of Entrepreneurship: Thinking & Action

If you dream of being an entrepreneur but don’t quite know how to make it a reality, Essentials of Entrepreneurship: Thinking & Action is the course for you.

What topics will you cover?

  • How to achieve success in a new business
  • Understanding the importance of a business plan
  • Business strategies for new businesses

3. Entrepreneurial Behavior:

There are a plethora of entrepreneurial courses available online for small business owners right now, and Entrepreneurial Behaviour is another hugely beneficial course for those looking to turn their business plans into a reality. 

What topics will you cover?

  • Exploring entrepreneur management and leadership
  • Understanding the work style of an entrepreneur
  • Qualities of a successful entrepreneur
  • How personal attributes aid entrepreneurial opportunities

4. New Venture Finance: Startup Funding for Entrepreneurs 

From hatching your business idea to starting up your company, finance is such an important thing to consider at every step of the journey. This is where the University of Maryland’s New Venture Finance: Startup Funding for Entrepreneurs comes in. 

What topics will you cover?

  • When to raise outside capital 
  • Understanding who and when to pitch
  • How to develop a winning investor pitch 

Introduction to Business Management

Whether business management is entirely new to you or you’re looking to improve your existing managerial skills, Introduction to Business Management is a free, self-paced course that can help you gain confidence in all aspects of management

What topics will you cover?

  • The importance of business management
  • Concepts, tools, and terminology in business
  • How to collaborate, negotiate, and give feedback in business

6. How to Build a Start-Up 

If you want to learn some key business tips from an expert in the field, Steve Blank’s How to Build a Start Up is an excellent resource for small business owners. 

What topics will you cover?

  • Business models and customer development
  • Value proposition
  • Customer relationships

Fundamentals of Marketing your Business Online

Fundamentals of Marketing your Business Online is the perfect example for established business owners looking to bring their business up to speed in the modern world. 

What topics will you cover?

  • How to promote your business online
  • Building your online marketing plan
  • Marketing through Google
  • How to use Google AdWords

 Branding, content, and social media 

The Ohio State University’s Branding, Content, and Social Media course is an incredibly helpful resource.

What topics will you cover?

  • Understanding social media
  • Social Media: How-to steps
  • Understanding branding

Introduction to SEO: Tactics and Strategies for Entrepreneurs

With Introduction to SEO: Tactics and Strategies for Entrepreneurs, you can get a firm handle on how to use SEO and marketing strategy.

What topics will you cover?

  • What is SEO strategy?
  • Content tips and tricks
  • Building a culture of SEO success

Innovation, markets, and industrial change

Making sure your business keeps up to date with market demands can be difficult, but The Open University’s course in Innovation, Markets, and Industrial Change is designed to help you understand the industry life cycle

What topics will you cover?

  • Understanding technological change, demand, and costs
  • Tapping into market demands

Management and Leadership: Well-being and Welfare at Work

In Management and Leadership: Well-being and Welfare at Work will be beneficial to you, your employees, and your business.

What topics will you cover?

  • Understanding and planning for professional development
  • The resources required for professional development

Business Improvement Techniques (Level 2 Certificate)

This certified Business Improvement Techniques course will bring you up to speed on the latest and most effective ways to improve your business’ efficiency

What topics will you cover?

  • How to implement safe and effective team working
  • How to conduct flow process analysis

There’s an online course for everything, but if the skill you’re hoping to learn isn’t covered on our top 12 list or want to find more extensive courses, here are some of the leading educational providers you can check out:

  • SkillShare – an online community where field experts share video-based tutorials and techniques in every aspect of business management.
  • Future Learn – courses and programs from top universities and business schools are readily available on Future Learn for small business owners.
  • Google Digital Garage – for webinars and online courses in marketing, technology, and career development.

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