ARTICLE TABLE OF CONTENTS
E-commerce is an essential part of doing business in today’s economy. In 2019, 1.92 billion people purchased products or services online, surpassing some $3.5 trillion globally, according to Statista. Recognizing this, businesses of all types need to create a presence online.
Through resources such as Shopify, Amazon, eBay, and their own websites, many businesses are creating strong success by reaching their customers online. If your business is ready to make the move online, or you’re there but struggling to earn the profits you hoped, an e-commerce online course may offer some help.
What Is an E-Commerce Online Course?
The best e-commerce online courses provide step-by-step instruction, guidance, and know-how in key topics that often leave business owners struggling. View them as a way of getting an education in marketing online and reaching customers who want to buy the products and services you offer.
After taking a look at a large number of e-commerce courses online, we’ve created a list of the top choices for business owners. Managing your business is less difficult when you employ the use of any of these courses.
If you’re brand new to creating an online business, it’s critical to learn internet marketing strategies. This is how you’ll be found online, market your products and services, and get the search engines to notice you.
This particular course teaches:
- Promotion using integrated web communications
- The basics of web advertising and promotions
- Measuring the effectiveness of your web advertising
- Learn to move a customer from just a person browsing the web to a buyer or interactive user
- Learn the power and potential of online marketing strategies in various business platforms.
The benefit of this course is providing specific examples and strategies businesses can use to market their first splash into internet marketing a good one. Users will be able to learn how to use the internet as an advertising medium and then make decisions about how to reach their target customers.
This course may be best for those that are working as a business professional or marketing pro and want to launch or are in the process of launching their online business.
HubSpot is anything but a simple, short course. Rather, this is an academy of courses – many of which allow a person to earn a certificate of completion. The courses are numerous, but most of them are free of charge. You can move through them over time, at your own pace, learning what you need or desire to learn as you go. The key here is to use HubSpot as a backbone to your online presence.
For business owners using platforms already or those who are creating their first e-commerce website, HubSpot breaks down core topics into easy-to-digest resources. Pick and choose what you need to learn at that moment – whether you are building a site or trying to figure out how to create a top-responding email marketing course.
The topics are numerous but some of them include:
- Digital advertising
- SEO training courses
- Designing Effective Google Ads Campaigns
- Sales Hub Admin: Managing a Sales Team in HubSpot
- Platform Consulting
- How to Build a Compelling Competitive Strategy
HubSpot does sell its own software for sales, marketing, and service, but you do not have to buy it to use the many programs and courses available. Rather, it’s best to start with some of the basic courses to get your own skills and then pick up any software you need as you go.
Foundr offers an excellent e-commerce course for those who are just getting started or those who have hit a roadblock in growth. One of the nice benefits of this e-commerce course is its ability to provide insights even to those who are somewhat experienced and looking for new ways to define or build their business. The cost is a bit up there, but the opportunities it offers includes:
- 8 modules that include over 50 videos created by the Foundr staff.
- Private mastermind groups to help with validating ideas and building an audience
- Step-by-step guide to launching your product (including on some top-rated platforms)
- Branding and store setup steps and strategies
- Turning a profit – how to take an idea and make it profitable
- Scaling operations on Shopify
As a comprehensive guide, it takes you from setting up your product to growth and scaling strategies. The video courses are immersive and truly build to create success. There are also professionally produced workbooks for those who want a more hands-on experience.
The University of Pennsylvania Wharton Online program provides a more traditional format for learning digital marketing. For those that want a course that is fully done online but provides a trade university-style approach to teaching the topic, this is the place to go.
The course itself is focused on the ever-evolving and fast-paced field of digital marketing. One of the nice features here is that it is updated often, meaning new strategies and methods are incorporated quite frequently. You don’t need a lot of experience to get started, but you will find new topics of interest if you do have some experience.
Areas of focus include:
- New media platforms
- New forms of interaction including the use of networks and reputation building
- Behavioral foundations for new online-offline landscape (a good choice for brick and mortar companies moving online
- Tools for digital marketing implementation
- Using mobile devices and fixed solutions for marketing
For those who produce products, such as handmade items or custom-designed pieces, Etsy is one of the most important selling platforms available. Building a business based on a creative journey is an excellent path for profit but it takes some hard work to get there. This course helps cut that journey down a bit with insightful information and support.
This particular class provides a beginner’s-level guide to starting an Etsy store and doing it well.
Some of the key components of the course include:
- Determining who the target customer for the product is
- Creating a brand that stands out and people seek out
- Ensuring would-be buyers can discover the shop
- Creating a built-in customer base
The course also provides steps to building an online business. A big part of that process is learning skills needed to help an Etsy business to stand out.
Don’t be overwhelmed by taking courses like this. Google Analytics Academy can seem a bit high-end for those just starting out. However, if you are building your own webstore or website from which you’ll sell products or services, you’ll need to learn how to master Google. It’s the top-ranked search engine by far, but Google is very fair about providing information on how to do well on the platform.
This particular course focuses on the measurement tools that help ensure your business can thrive online. There are several classes available, each teaching an advancing series of topics on Google Analytics. Topics include:
- Creating an account and implementing tracking codes
- Setting up campaigns and creating specific goals
- Complex analysis tool use and marketing tools
- Google Ad Manager education
Use this course when you want to build a successful Google-based ad campaign. That’s something you’ll focus on for various growth strategies within your e-commerce business. It helps you learn how to track the activity on your website. That allows you to build a website that’s reaching your target audience and producing leads or sales. Because of how widespread Google is, it’s a paramount investment for most business owners.
You’ll find dozens (if not hundreds) of courses to help you sell on Amazon. Any of them can be a good option for learning competitiveness and strategy. However, for those just starting out, Amazon Seller University is the foundation. This is where you will learn how to use all the selling tools Amazon offers and master the platform itself.
It’s easy enough to see why anyone selling products wants to be on Amazon. According to JungleScout, 62% of Amazon sellers see rising profits and 85% of Amazon sellers are profitable. For that reason, investing in Seller University as a first step to establishing your business on the platform makes sense. Seller University offers insights into:
- Setting up Fulfillment by Amazon
- Understanding Amazon policies
- Learning about product IDs
- Pricing and selling strategies
- Marketing on the site
Now, once you learn everything there is to know from Seller University, take the time to check out one or more of the other Amazon e-commerce courses. There are plenty of those to help you do well on the platform.
The Digital Marketing Institute teaches people how to become certified digital marketers. However, it also offers a series of short courses. These short courses are likely exactly what you need to learn how to thrive in various areas, based on what you need to learn to help your business. Some of the best digital marketing courses available through the site include:
- Content Marketing
- Data and web analytics (this goes beyond what Google Analytics teaches)
- E-Commerce including UX design principles and conversion rate optimization
- Social media marketing
- Search engine optimization
- Paid Media (PPC)
- Email marketing
This organization offers just about everything you need to do well when launching a business online. Your e-commerce store will benefit from a range of these courses especially when you have a startup budget for a newly launched product and need to get attention from buyers. Some of the courses are a bit pricy (averaging around $450 apiece). However, they offer 8 to 12 hours of worth of training each. The content is solid and the delivery method is good, too. This is a well-respected institution you can trust to have the most up-to-date info.
The London Business School offers the Brand Management educational course on Coursera. While a lot of the success in e-commerce marketing comes from building websites and Google, there is also a large component of success that stems from branding. It is a critical component to success online because it helps drive customers back to the businesses they’ve purchased from before. This course teaches the foundations of brand management.
It is fully available online and is directly from the University of London. It’s a free program that takes about 17 hours to complete. This is a beginner-level course, but from this insight companies with products or services to launch will know exactly how to do so. Some core components of the course include:
- Brand Purpose & Experience
- Brand Design & Delivery
- Brand Leadership & Alignment
- Brand Practices & Engagement
- Brand Metrics and Return
This course provides a foundation of insight to help business owners create a brand, manage it in the age of the internet, and use that brand to create customer loyalty. No matter which platform your business operates on, this is core, valuable insight.
Dropshipping remains an effective way to build a business online. However, it takes a different skillset from what other e-commerce business models follow. This course is a moderate price but provides a good deal of insight and support to enable business owners to learn how to start and manage their dropshipping company from start to finish.
The course doesn’t require many skills to get started, but it does provide essential insights on dropshipping including:
- Determining what type of products to sell within the dropship model (and what does not work as well)
- Setting up the ideal website for drop shipping (how to do so, what to do, and where to get started)
- Launching the website for the sales and then starting to establish sales
- Finding suppliers for the dropshipping business, including how to avoid the wrong distributors that may not be ideal
- Developing strategies for building sales
- Growing income and building out the dropship company further
Dropshipping management skills are taught, as well as a focused effort on not just a single product but also exploring products that can expand the portfolio further.
Where Do You Begin?
If you are building a business online – in any format – you need skills. Some of those skills focus on the concept of creating a website and building a Google online presence. Yet, most companies will also need to learn the basics. That includes operating their business, managing profits, scaling and growth, obtaining funding, and managing customer service.
The good news is virtually every type of course that is needed – anything you need to learn to build a successful business like this online – is available online. Seek out the platforms mentioned here – including Coursera, Udemy, Alison.com, and others like this, for free or low-cost courses in many for the topics you need. Be sure to check to ensure the most up-to-date information is provided and read through some of the reviews left by those who took the course to ensure the information provided is accessible and beneficial to what you need to learn to grow your company.