Running your own small business is an enormous task, and it comes with a huge learning curve!
One of the things I’ve noticed, is that most small business owners don’t seem aware of the vast amount of business, marketing, and educational tools and resources available absolutely free – and right under their noses! So here are some of my favourite free business resources.
Resources by Platforms You Already Use
I’d like to kick this off by focusing on the heap of great business resources that are provided free of charge by service and platforms you’re likely already using!
- Google for Small Business: A handful of guides and courses for getting started with small business in the online sphere.
- Grow With Google: A bunch more courses for Google tools and general digital skills.
- Google Analytics & Google Search Console: These two are absolute must-haves, and things I’d recommend setting up as soon as you launch your site (you can even add Analytics to most other public-facing services and storefronts you use). These will tell you how people are finding you, a bit about their experience on your site, and what they’re searching in order to find you. Even if dealing with that data is a bit overwhelming right now, I’d recommend setting them up ASAP, because then you’ll have a bunch of tasty data ready when you need it.
- Blog: Canva’s blog contains not only a bunch of great design resources, but general small business resources, as well!
- Design School: A whole bunch of awesome Design courses – including live workshops!
PayPal Business Resource Center spans a bunch of different business topics for everyone from small businesses and non-profits all the way up to enterprise!
- Guides: From “How to Accept Payments” through to “How to Start a Beauty Salon”, the amount of courses here isn’t overwhelming, but is worth checking out.
- Town Square: Their blog, featuring a heap of different business resources, which you can filter by topic, industry, and type of content.
Social Media Platforms
- BluePrint: A whole bunch of courses on using Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp for business and marketing.
- Facebook for Business: The central hub for all of their business tools and information.
- Meta Business Suite: A central point where you can manage all your Facebook and Instagram properties, including scheduling posts and managing comments and messages across platforms.
- Debugging tool: Want to see what information Facebook pulls through when you share a link from your website? Have you updated some info somewhere and Facebook is still showing you old information? This will help!
- Instagram for Business: Full of tips, news, and tools for using Instagram for business.
- Instagram for Creators: This one’s focused more at influencers and content creators, but is still full of great info for everyone!
- TikTok for Business contains info and courses on using TikTok in general, as well as utilising it for business marketing and advertising.
- Pinterest for Business: Tips on both organic and paid marketing on Pinterest.
- Twitter for Business: Whether Twitter is relevant to your business definitely depends on your target market, but if it is, here’s some info to get you started.
- Debugging tool: Want to see what information Twitter pulls through when you share a link from your website? Have you updated some info somewhere and Twitter is still showing you old information? This will help!
- YouTube for Artists: This is directed at musicians, but as always, is still full of great general content, too.
- YouTube Creators: Your primary resource hub for creating on YouTube.
- YouTube Studio: Even if you’re not running your own YouTube channel, this is where you can access their audio library. If you make videos for you business, here’s some free music you can use!
- Blog: Chock-full of articles about business, e-commerce, and related topics, this is definitely worth checking out!
- Learn: Here’s where you’ll find great video courses spanning the gamut of business, e-commerce, marketing, and sales.
- Free tools: Need help coming up with a business name, logo, or slogan? Need a QR code, business card, barcode, or an invoice template? How about terms and conditions and other policies for your website? You can literally find all that (and more!) right here!
Squarespace Learning: Here’s where can find all of Squarespace’s upcoming webinars, as well as access to their forums, and any other business resources they have available.
- Blog: Covering a range of topics – from web design, to marketing and small business, this is full of great content.
- Learn: Video courses and webinars spanning a bunch of business topics.
- SEO: I haven’t checked out Wix’s SEO academy yet, but based on a quick browse, I absolutely will be going through it at some point!
- Website inspiration: Looking for website ideas? Wix has collected a whole bunch for you!
So there’s a bunch of tools, education, and other great business resources that you can find provided absolutely free by the services and platforms you probably already use. And if you don’t? Most of them are still completely free to access!
What are your favourite business resources? Are there any that should be in the list above that I’ve missed? What kind of resources would you like to see covered in part 2? Let me know!