9 Best Blogs to Actually Learn How to Run an Online Business for Free
If you want to build an online business but don’t know your way around the business world, you have a few options to move forward. You could go to business school, which takes years and tens of thousands of dollars. You could try to figure things out as you go, which has a good chance of failure. Or, you could give yourself a budget education by reading everything you can about business. If the third option sounds good to you, you’ve come to the right place! Between books and blogs, you can get a great business education, learn to solve complex challenges, and take your business to the next level. Here is a list of some of the top blogs around to learn about running an online business.
Smart Passive Income
Pat Flynn’s Smart Passive Income shares Pat’s inspiring journey of founding multiple, successful online businesses. At the same time, he provides incredibly useful, action oriented content on his blog, podcast, YouTube channel, and elsewhere around the web. His monthly income reports are a fun highlight, as they break down the details of his six-figure monthly income. That’s right, he makes over $100,000 every month online!
Entrepreneur on Fire
John Lee Dumas, affectionately known as JLD, is the host of Entrepreneur on Fire. This business podcast brings daily interviews with successful entrepreneurs around the world. The blog, written by Kate Erickson, is always impressive as well. While it is technically not a blog, a podcast is kind of like an audio blog. Both sides of the EOFire house are great for boosting your business chops. If you need any evidence of success, JLD also does income reports, and his most recent one was over $200,000 in a month!
Your business may have the best website in the history of websites, but if no one can find it, your business will fizzle. Instead of using a “publish and pray” approach, you should take specific steps to rank well in Google’s search results. These steps are known as search engine optimization, or SEO, and Backlinko is one of the best SEO blogs out there. Run by successful blogger Brian Dean, Backlinko’s combination of incredibly in-depth blog posts and helpful tutorial videos is sure to bring your website to a bigger audience.
What started as a successful magazine grew into a successful blog as well! The folks behind Entrepreneur magazine run the Entrepreneur blog, which is packed with useful articles on building and running a business. Recent topics include management tips for bosses, branding tips based on other success stories, regulatory issues, franchise opportunities, videos, podcasts, and lifestyle tips curated for busy business founders and managers like you.
When I started blogging back in 2006, more than a decade ago, there were not many resources available about blogging. One shining light on the web was Problogger, which has useful posts about running a blog going back to 2004. While building my own website, the Problogger blog was a daily visit, and the Problogger book was hugely valuable. The well known and successful site, managed by Australian blogger Darren Rowse, should be on the reading list of anyone looking to build an online audience through content marketing.
If you want epic, detailed guides to help you grow your online business, Sumo stories, the blog of the company behind the popular Sumo app, is a very high quality resource. If you plan to read an article, you’ll want to block out at least a half hour on your calendar. Then you’ll need hours, if not days, to follow up on everything you’ll want to do as a follow-up. But if you really do follow along step-by-step, you won’t regret it when you see the results.
Harvard Business Review
Harvard University is one of the best and most recognized universities in the world. Founded in 1636, Harvard is over a hundred years older than the United States itself! One of the gems of Harvard is Harvard Business School, consistently ranked in the top five business schools in the nation. The Harvard Business Review comes from many of those top educators, along with other contributors from around the business world. Every time you visit, you’ll leave a little smarter, and with plenty of useful knowledge on growing your business.
Insightly is a customer relationship management app, or CRM, that businesses use to manage sales, outreach, and other mass communications. This blog is focused most on how to use a CRM to get the best results, but there are plenty of other useful tips for business owners as well. While it isn’t quite as active as some other blogs on this list, if you do any sort of direct online marketing, you need CRM skills, and this is where you should go to level up your CRM productivity.
Buffer is a social media scheduling tool that allows you to pre-write and schedule posts across various social media platforms. The blog will help you learn to use Buffer better, and improve your social media for better impact. Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks have billions of users, and ignoring them is a huge disservice to your business. Instead of ignoring, dig into the details at the Buffer blog and leverage your social presence to reach bigger and more targeted audiences for your online business.