37 Free Marketing and Social Media Classes to Elevate Your Skills Today

When I first started out with digital marketing, I was blown away by the sheer amount of online marketing resources and social media classes.

I read hundreds of articles and enrolled in as many marketing courses that I could possibly get my hands on. Even today, millions of resources continue to be published online every month.

It’s enough to wonder …

Where can you go for the best, most useful marketing information?

I’ve had the chance to test out and research a huge amount of resources, and I’m excited to share with you 37 free marketing and social media classes that you can enroll in to upgrade your skills across the board. 

Let’s dive in!

37 Free Online Marketing and Social Media Classes

The list here includes free online courses in a number of social media-related topics and disciplines. If you’d like to dig into one area in particular, here’s a quick table of contents so you can jump to the section that’s most important to you:

Free Online Courses to Learn and Improve Your Social Media Marketing Skills

1. What Is Social?

coursera-what-is-social

Offered by: Coursera

Created by: Northwestern University

Topics include:

  • Social trends
  • Defining target audiences
  • Data analysis

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

“What Is Social?” is a massive open online course (MOOC) for business owners, executives, and marketing professionals who want to significantly improve their abilities to grow their social media strategy using effective, proven methodologies. In short, it’s a really awesome, action-based intro to social media.

The exciting part with this hands-on class is that you not only get to hear about ways to grow your professional persona using social media, but you will actually do it! “What Is Social” is the first in a six-course specialization offered by Northwestern University (a top university in the United States). Once you finish this first course, you can continue on with the next steps of the track: Social Media Marketing: How to Profit in a Digital World. (The first course is free; the full track costs $426.)

2. Diploma in Social Media Marketing

alison-social-media-marketing-free-course

Offered by: Alison

Created by: Advance Learning Academy

Topics include:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook pages
  • Blogging and podcasting
  • Social media images
  • Email list growth
  • Affiliate marketing

Skill level: Beginner

About this course: 

Alison is a similar to Coursera as a site that offers a huge range of classes and certifications, including several in the marketing space. Their free social media class covers the use of email marketing, affiliate marketing, using social media tools such as Twitter, blogging and podcasting, and how to use Facebook to create a business page and get it noticed by current and potential customers. So you’re likely to get a social media foundation plus a handful of other digital marketing skills to boot.

3. Social Media Monitoring

Social Media Monitoring with Coursera

Offered by: Coursera

Created by: Eric Schwartzman

Topics include:

  • Keyword filtering
  • Google related searches
  • Using Google Alerts and its benefits
  • Identifying influencers and content curation possibilities
  • Monitoring strategies for Facebook, Twitter, and more

Skill level: All Levels

About this course: 

This free social media class on how to monitor what your audience and customers are saying online is for marketers looking to keep a finger on the pulse of their community. Whether you’re just starting out in social media or are a seasoned veteran, this course has actionable social monitoring takeaways for people of all skills levels.

The course provides detailed examples of monitoring in action, allows you to get an overview of the different social media monitoring tools available for use, and strategies for how you can use what you’ve learned and apply it to your own social media program.

4. The Business of Social

The Business of Social Course

Offered by: Coursera

Created by: Northwestern University

Topics include:

  • Discovering where social media “fits in”
  • How to tie social media to real business results
  • Managing and measuring a successful social media program

Skill level: Beginner – Intermediate

About this course:

“The Business of Social” is for businesses owners, marketers, and social media managers looking for ways to tie social media directly into real business growth objectives. In other words, those looking to drive real, measurable value from a social media strategy and program.

Instead of focusing on how marketers can create great content for social media, this class more focuses on how exactly to measure your social investments in terms of time, cost, and opportunities.

5. Social Media Ethics

Social Media Ethics

Offered by: Coursera

Created by: Eric Schwartzman

Topics include:

  • How to use good judgement when using social media for work
  • What constitutes ethical behavior on social media
  • Demonstrating consideration for others on social media

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

Have you ever wondered what it means to use social media effectively and ethically? This free course on “Social Media Ethics” provides the framework for social networking and engaging in ethical conversations online for all professionals and employees. Touching on local, State, and Federal laws, it takes the guessing game out of what is and is not legal on social media for employees of businesses.

6. Advanced Social Media Marketing for Picking up Clients

Advanced Social Media Marketing for Picking Up Clients

Offered by: Udemy

Created by: Brian Yang

Topics include:

  • Common social media myths and mistakes
  • The art of using Facebook Groups
  • Attracting YouTube subscribers and creating engaging videos
  • Creating quality (not spammy) content for social media

Skill level: Intermediate

About this course: 

The tagline for this social media class is “picking up clients with social media in 48 hours or less.” Which points to the fact that this instructor dives into intermediate social media strategies. Moving beyond more beginner tactics like setting up social media accounts and basic posting strategies, this class assumes that you already know those things and provides details on how to best use the channels that you’re already familiar with.

All you need for this course is an active Facebook, YouTube, and Reddit account and you’ll be on your way to learning the secrets behind picking up clients on social media.

7. Facebook Blueprint

Facebook Blueprint Social Media Course

Offered by: Facebook

Created by: Blueprint eLearning

Topics include:

  • Facebook Terminology and Know-How
  • Best Practices for Facebook & Instagram Posting
  • Optimizing Facebook & Instagram Advertising
  • Creating a quality Facebook Page and experience

Skill level: Beginner – Advanced

About this course: 

Perfect for small businesses, marketers, agencies, and advertisers, Facebook Blueprint is your one stop shop for everything there is to know about running successful advertising campaigns using your Facebook Business Page. This huge resource of free, self-paced social media classes will cover best-practices and top strategies used by the world’s largest brands.

With Facebook becoming very much a “pay-to-play” platform, this is the perfect opportunity for businesses and marketers to fully grasp everything there is to know about ensuring that your advertising dollar stretches as far as possible.

8. Social Media Quickstarter

Social Media Kickstarter with Constant Contact

Offered by: Constant Contact

Created by: Constant Contact

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Pinterest
  • Instagram
  • Snapchat
  • And more!

Skill level: Beginner

About this course: 

All social media managers and marketers start somewhere. This free social media class from Constant Contact is a great resource for those who are looking to dive into the world of social media without all of the complications. It offers a step-by-step guide to building a presence on almost every social media platform you can think of.

For those unsure if social media is right for you or for your business, this class is a great way to dip your toes in and start small with social media marketing. Who knows, you may find that social media is just right for you!


Free Online Courses to Boost Your Digital Marketing Know-How

9. Email Marketing for E-Commerce

Email Marketing for Ecommerce

Offered by: Skillshare

Created by: Mailchimp

  • Email marketing automation
  • Email marketing optimization
  • Email marketing personalization

Skill level: Intermediate to Advanced

About this course: 

Marketers and social media professionals with a basic understanding of how email marketing works will love this free online course from Mailchimp. Perfect for those of you on the go, it’s a 25-minute, highly tactical class on developing the basic email marketing principles that you may already be familiar with.

By the end of this email course, you’ll have a great understanding of how to create engaging email marketing campaigns and how to optimize your strategy in order to increase business revenue.

10. Marketing in a Digital World

Marketing in a Digital World

Offered by: Coursera

Created by: University of Illinois

  • How tools such as smartphones and 3D devices are changing the marketing sphere
  • How power is shifting from companies and brands to consumers
  • Offering product ideas that stick in a digital world

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

“Marketing in a Digital World” is one of the most popular free marketing courses on Coursera – with more then 100,000 students enrolled to this date. Taught by a professor at the University of Illinois, this class focuses on the transformation of marketing strategies an tactics into a digital-first world. Specifically, how technology is putting the power of marketing into the hands of the consumer.

This course is perfect for marketers looking to understand where the marketing field is today and how you can leverage new-age strategies to attract customers. And for those who are keen to continue their learning, this course is part of a larger Digital Marketing Specialization for the University of Illinois.

11. QuickSprout University

QuickSprout University

Offered by: QuickSprout

Created by: Neil Patel

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • Link Building
  • Content Marketing
  • Social Media
  • Paid Advertising
  • And more!

Skill level: Beginner – Advanced

About this course:

This awesome (or should we say huge?) set of classes from the one and only Neil Patel is a great place for marketers looking to learn about a huge variety of online and digital marketing tactics. Class topics range from beginner SEO and content creation strategies to advanced social media, email marketing and paid advertising.

What makes this course is that Neil Patel presents the information in very easy-to-learn and snackable ways. The lessons are presented in video format and range anywhere from 3:00 – 12:00 minutes. Each video also comes with a full transcript allowing more visual learners to follow along.

12. Inbound Marketing Certification

HubSpot Inbound Marketing Academy

Offered by: HubSpot

Created by: HubSpot

  • Inbound marketing
  • Email marketing
  • Inbound sales techniques
  • Content marketing
  • Growth-driven design

Skill level: Beginner – Advanced

About this course:

HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing Certification is full of super actionable, hands-on learning material that allows marketers to take their general inbound marketing know-how to the next level. The certification consists of 12 different classes and more than 4.5 hours of learning material in both video and text format.

You’ll learn all about SEO, blogging, landing pages, lead nurturing, conversion analysis and reporting come together to form a modern-day inbound marketing strategy. This free online marketing course is presented in different modules, where after successful completion of all the lessons and tests, you’ll be HubSpot certified!

13. Viral Marketing and How to Create Contagious Content

Viral Marketing and How to Craft Contagious Content

Offered by: Coursera

Created by: University of Pennsylvania

  • What makes ideas sticky
  • How social influence shapes behavior
  • The power of word of mouth

Skill level: Beginner – Intermediate

About this course:

Taught by University of Pennsylvania Professor and best-selling author, Jonah Berger, this free online marketing course helps to answer the mystery of why some ideas and products become popular and why others do not. It’s perfect for social media managers and marketers looking to put a “science” behind their content marketing method.

You’ll start with an understanding of why things catch on in the first place and how you can use those lessons to create viral content online. Then, you’ll move on to spreading your new and creative ideas through social media and other digital marketing channels.

14. Pay Per Click (PPC) University

WordStream PPC University, Social Media Marketing Class

Offered by: WordStream

Created by: WordStream

  • All about PPC (What it is, basic terminology, structuring)
  • Keyword research
  • Landing page optimization
  • A/B testing
  • PPC for lead generation and B2B

Skill level: Beginner – Advanced

About this course: 

PPC University is a fully free online learning resource created by WordStream, to help build your PPC and digital marketing skills. The format is presented in three streams of learning plans which offer lessons for beginning to advanced users, with additional modules for social advertising.

You can also access a number of webinars and white papers to enhance your digital marketing expertise, and best of all, everything’s mobile-friendly so you can learn on the go, whenever you have time!

15. Diploma in E-Business

Diploma in Ebusiness

Offered by: Alison

Created by: Google

  • Introduction to Google Webmaster
  • Using Google AdWords
  • Understanding and using Google Analytics Data
  • Conversion Reports and collecting actionable insights

Skill level: Intermediate

About this course: 

This “Diploma in E-Business” course is a comprehensive resource for marketers, business owners, and advertisers who would like to get the most out of their digital marketing efforts. You’ll learn things like the fundamentals of promoting your business online, using various Google-powered tools, and how to track and make sense of the vast amounts of data available to you.

Whether you have a deep knowledge of how to market your business online or are just getting started, this course is an awesome way to strengthen your digital marketing skills.

16. Google Digital Marketing Course

Google Online Marketing Challenge, Google Digital Marketing Course

Offered by: WordStream

Created by: WordStream

  • All about PPC (What it is, basic terminology, structuring)
  • Keyword research
  • Landing page optimization
  • A/B testing
  • PPC for lead generation and B2B

Skill level: Beginner – Advanced

About this course: 

Learning the ins-and-outs of all of the marketing tools that Google offers is quite the task. But marketers and business owners have seen the direct benefits of mastering the various Google advertising platforms in terms of business ROI. This course offers a direct line to always-updated resources for everything Google.

This course is also a part of a Online Marketing Challenge from Google. Students that plan to take the Online Marketing Challenge are encouraged to complete the Digital Marketing Course first. Marketers looking to learn everything there is to know about Google (and advertising), this is a great place to start!

17. Buffer’s Week of Webinars on Digital Marketing

Buffer Week of Webinars, Buffer Social Media Class

Offered by: Buffer

Created by: Buffer

Topics include:

  • Content curation and sharing on social media
  • Getting your content seen on Facebook
  • Instagram Marketing to boost your business
  • Branding and PR outreach
  • Getting started with social media data

Skill level: Beginner – Intermediate

About this course:

While not a social media “class” in a traditional sense, Buffer’s Week-of-Webinars covers everything from content curation to social media analytics to getting your content seen in the Facebook News Feed.

The great thing about this series of online marketing webinars is that no registration is required to sign up and you can view all five of the videos at your own convenience. And we’d love to hear what you think of these webinars in the comments below!


Free Online Courses to Level Up With Marketing Analytics & Data

18. Introduction to Analytics and the Language of SAS

Introduction to Analytics and the Language of SAS

Offered by: Udemy

Created by: Jigsaw Academy

Topics include:

  • What “analytics” means
  • Why the field of analytics is and why it’s booming
  • Popular analytics tools and applications
  • Introduction to the language of SAS

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

This “Introduction to Analytics” course is a great starting point for marketers looking to understand what the field of analytics is all about and how to apply it to a variety of businesses and situations. If you’re looking to go beyond the very popular marketing spreadsheets, this course is perfect for you.

This class is broken up into 12 videos of varying length – anywhere from 5-30 minutes and will take you about 2 hours to complete from start to finish.

19. Google Analytics Academy

Google Analytics Academy, Social Media Classes

Offered by: Google

Created by: Google

Topics include:

  • Digital analytics fundamentals
  • Google Analytics platform principles
  • Ecommerce analytics
  • Mobile app analytics
  • Google Tag Manager

Skill level: Intermediate – Advanced

About this course:

Google Analytics Academy is an incredible online resource for marketers looking to up their game in everything Google-related. With the importance of tracking and incorporating data into your marketing strategy, there has never been a better time to learn all you can about one of the most data-rich resources in the world.

Some of the most popular modules from the Google Analytics Academy include Digital Analytics Fundamentals and Google Analytics Platform Principles. Both of those courses will give you a solid foundation of how to implement data into your strategy and how you can use the platform to best inform your decisions moving forward.

20. An Introduction to Consumer Neuroscience and Neuromarketing

An Introduction to Consumer Neuroscience & Neuromarketing, social media and marketing courses

Offered by: Coursera

Created by: Copenhagen Business School

Topics include:

  • What Neuromarketing is all about
  • Attention and consciousness
  • Sensory neuromarketing
  • Emotions, feelings, wanting and liking

Skill level: Beginner – Intermediate

About this course:

I put this fantastic course on Neuromarketing under the Analytics and Data section because it really gets into the nuts and bolts of why people make the decisions that they do online and in real life. Understanding that can help marketers and business make decisions based on data and research.

You’ll be taken on a journey through the basic brain mechanisms in consumer choice, and how to stay updated on these topics. The course will give an overview of the current and future uses of neuroscience in business and how you can apply it to your own social media and marketing strategy.

21. Data Analytics with Excel PivotTables

Data Analytics with Excel PivotTables 2016

Offered by: Udemy

Created by: UpSkill Ladder

Topics include:

  • Intro to business analytics
  • Understanding Excel and PivotTables
  • Getting started with PivotTables
  • Terms such as Grouping and Custom Calculations

Skill level: Advanced

About this course:

I have the tendency to cringe when I hear the words “Excel PivotTables.” But I also understand how important the use of PivotTables can be in diving into your analytics and making informed decisions about marketing.

This course will teach you how to do Data analytics with Excel PivotTables effectively and efficiently. At the end of the lessons, you will understand the concept, various scenarios and types of Business analytics. Along with that you will learn, how to use one of the strongest features of Microsoft Excel, which is the PivotTables.

22. Digital Analytics for Marketing Professionals

Digital Analytics for Marketing Professionals: Marketing Analytics in Practice

Offered by: Coursera

Created by: University of Illinois

Topics include:

  • Data Collection, Analysis and Visualization
  • How data fits into a company’s marketing strategy
  • Making informed marketing decisions based on data

Skill level: Advanced

About this course:

Taught by Kevin Hartman, Head of Industry at Google, this free marketing course on “Digital Analytics” focuses on the specific data collection, analysis, and visualization techniques used by the world’s top brands. Unlike some of the other analytics classes offered online, this one focuses specifically on marketing.

This course will set you up with a full understanding of how to properly approach data analytics in marketing and how to make informed decisions based on your finding. In short, you’ll be a data wizard!

23. Marketing Measurement Strategy

Marketing Analytics: Marketing Measurement Strategy

Offered by: edX

Created by: University of California at Berkeley

Topics include:

  • How to identify marketing trends
  • How to predict future market conditions
  •  An understanding of metrics used to measure marketing success

Skill level: Intermediate

About this course:

In this marketing class, you’ll learn the best approaches and practices for marketing measurement, including how to use metrics to measure success. The professor, Stephan Sorger, presents hands-on examples of how to identify market trends, how to predict future conditions, and how to put those into action.

24. Social Media Analytics

Free Social Media Analytics Course

Offered by: Quintly

Created by: Quintly

Topics include:

  • Introduction to social media analytics
  • The social media landscape
  • Differentiation between social networks for data collection
  • Finding KPIs that fit your goals

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

As social media continues to drive traffic and revenue for businesses, the need for marketers to fully understand the “why” behind social success (or downturns) will increase.

This free social media class from Quintly covers the basic principles of social media analytics both for beginners and for marketers who want to refresh their knowledge. It aims to help anybody involved in social media analytics, no matter whether you are working for a brand, an agency or in the media.


Free Online Courses to Get Up to Speed on Content, Blogging, & SEO

25. SEO Training

SEO Training, free marketing courses

Offered by: Udemy

Created by: Eric Schwartzman

Topics include:

  • Integrating SEO in offline and online marketing activities
  • The vocabulary of search engine optimization
  • Most effective SEO strategies
  • White hat vs. black hat SEO

Skill level: Beginner – Intermediate

About this course:

This SEO Training class is perfect for social media managers, executives and entry-level employees. This SEO course will help you increase the search rank of your corporate website, you blog or LinkedIn profile.

Learn how to figure out which terms your customers actually search and how to create online content that is most likely to rank high in Google search engine page results.  For most organizations, search engine optimization presents a greater conversion opportunity that social media outreach.

26. Writing for the Web

Writing for the Web social media course

Offered by: Open2Study

Created by: Frankie Madden

Topics include:

  • How to structure a web page
  • Considerations for search engines and accessibility
  • Making your content scannable
  • Using keywords, headings, lists and links

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

Knowing how to write well is an important skill for just about anything, but knowing how to write for the web is a whole different ball game. It takes clear and concise copy to gain the attention of your readers in just a few seconds.

This course will help just about anyone – from journalists to technical writers to developers to aspiring bloggers – create content that really engages and converts online. It also will teach you the skills needed to accommodate the requirements of online readers through web design, writing style, structure and SEO.

27. Writing for Brands: Freelancing in the Age of Content Marketing

Writing for Brands: Freelancing in the Age of Content Marketing

Offered by: Skillshare

Created by: Contently

Topics include:

  • What content marketing entails
  • The basics of writing for, and working with brands
  • Marketing yourself as a writer
  • How to craft the perfect pitch to a brand

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

Have you ever wondered how all of those great bloggers get writing gigs for brands online? This course provides the framework for starting a successful freelance career if that’s something you’d be interested in. Taught by Brian Maehl of Contently, “Writing for Brands” is an actionable, 30-minutes writing course that breaks down the process into simple steps.

Whether writing turns into a full-time career for you or just a fun project to tackle on the side, the folks at Contently are happy to help prepare you to pitch your content ideas to brands both big and small.

28. SEO Training Course

SEO Training Course from MOZ

Offered by: Udemy

Created by: Moz

Topics include:

  • Building a monthly SEO plan
  • 5 ways to use social media profiles for SEO
  • Link building with Twitter
  • Mapping keywords to content

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

Optimizing a web site for search engines requires looking at a ton of unique elements both on and off your website. This course on SEO from the folks at Moz will help you to start making sense of it all. Most importantly, it will help you form consistent SEO habits that you can implement long after this course is over.

If you’re interested in getting started with optimizing your website for search engines and how social media has the power to fit within that strategy, this is a great place to start for beginners.

29. Content Marketing for B2B Enterprises

Content Marketing for B2B Enterprises

Offered by: Udemy

Created by: William Flanagan

Topics include:

  • End-to-end B2B marketing tactics and strategies
  • Content creation that converts
  • Identifying industry influencers
  • Building a data system to foster improvement

Skill level: Intermediate – Advanced

About this course:

B2B companies, products, and services often require a slightly different approach to content marketing. Customer sales cycles are more drawn out and require various, targeted content types to help assist decision-makers to the next stage.

The entire set of classes in this content marketing course lasts roughy 35 minutes. You’ll learn how to get inside the mind of your market and build content that interests them in a short period of time. Allowing you to get back to running your business!

30. High-Impact Business Writing

High-Impact Business Writing Online Course

Offered by: Coursera

Created by: University of California at Irvine

Topics include:

  • Introduction and basics to business writing
  • Various business document types
  • Informal and social media communication

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

Writing great copy that is meant to drive people to take a specific business action is a unique and valuable skill to have for marketers and business owners alike. This “High-Impact Business Writing” course is aimed at helping you get your thoughts on paper in a clear and concise manner.

Structured as a 4-week class, you’ll start with the basics of businesses writing, including why it’s important, and move to more advanced topics such as preparing business documents and translating ideas to more informal channels such as social media. In short, helping to to become a business copy whiz!

31. Internet Marketing for Smart People

Internet Marketing for smart people

Offered by: Copyblogger

Created by: Copyblogger

Topics include:

  • Introduction and basics to business writing
  • Various business document types
  • Informal and social media communication

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

With the tagline, “you don’t have to be a genius to master internet marketing,” this 20-part email course from the folks at Copyblogger offers a great starting place for those new to the marketing field. What’s unique about this course is that it digs deeply into the areas of direct response copywriting and relationship building.

It’s set up in “4 Pillars” takes you through various topics such as customer relationships, writing, content marketing and delivering something that’s worth selling.


Free Online Courses to Learn Marketing Design and Imagery

32. Graphic Design Basics: Core Principles for Graphic Design

Graphic Design Basics: Core Principles for Visual Design

Offered by: Skillshare

Created by: Smithsonian Design Museum

Topics include:

  • Identifying and defining basic design principles
  • Effectively critiquing your own work for balance
  • Applying what you’ve learned to your own projects

Skill level: Beginner

About this course:

Have you ever wanted to get started with design so that you can create your own images for social media and marketing? This “Graphic Design Basics” from will set you up with a solid foundation to branch out as a beginner designer.

In this 35-minute class designers Ellen Lupton and Jennifer Cole Phillips walk students through what it takes to create great designs. Including, the 5 important and fundamental aspects of design and how you can apply those to every one of your projects moving forward.

33. How to Create Better Graphic Design

How to create better graphic design

Offered by: Udemy

Created by: Inoshiro Design

Topics include:

  • Identifying and defining basic design principles
  • Effectively critiquing your own work for balance
  • Applying what you’ve learned to your own projects

Skill level: Beginner

About this course: 

Did you know that in 2016, visual content is more than 40X more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content? Today, it’s becoming important, even crucial for marketers to have at least some basic knowledge of key design terms.

This course does a deep dive into the five steps for better visual communication. These components include creating ideas and applying them to your design, communicating ideas effectively within the design, and having a consistent design look and feel.

34. The Landing Page Conversion Course

THE LANDING PAGE CONVERSION COURSE

Offered by: Unbounce

Created by: Unbounce

Topics include:

  • Landing page 101
  • 5 core landing page elements
  • The psychology of conversion

Skill level: Beginner – Intermediate

About this course: 

Curious about the power of landing pages in marketing campaigns? Unbounce has the art of a perfect landing page down to a science. And in this comprehensive online marketing class, they share all of that knowledge with you, no questions asked.

The Landing Page Conversion Course takes you from “Landing Page 101” right on down to “Copywriting” and even “Testing and Optimization.” If you’ve ever been curious about the power of landing pages and how they can help you grow your business, this course is the perfect one for you.

35. Visual and Graphic Design

Graphic Design - Visual and Graphic Design

Offered by: ALISON

Created by: XSIQ

Topics include:

  • Using various design elements
  • Drawing and production systems in design
  • The production process for designers

Skill level: Beginner

About this course: 

Great design starts with the fundamentals. The free course from ALISON examines various design elements including line, shape, form and texture and design principles, covering composition, balance, contrast and hierarchy. If you’re interested in exploring graphic design, industrial design or the design process in general, this free graphic design class is perfect for you.

36. Graphic Design 101

Graphic Design 101

Offered by: Udemy

Created by: Design and Art Direction Mason Gentry

Topics include:

  • Concept-driven design and implementation
  • Why some design mediums need to communicate more quickly than others
  • Thinking behind great graphic design
  • A birds eye view of the entire field of graphic deisgn

Skill level: Intermediate

About this class: 

Are you interested in deepening your knowledge of graphic design or how graphic design can be applied in the real world? The class “Graphic Design 101” is specifically for developers who may know a little about graphic design, but would like to learn more.

Many students who take this class have the ability to recognize a good design when they see one, but may not know WHY it’s a good design. This free online design class looks to help answer the “why.”

37. DIY Viral Video: A Class on Making iPhone How-To Videos

DIY Viral Video: A Mini Class on Making iPhone How-To Videos

Offered by: Skillshare

Created by: Nicole Farb

Topics include:

  • Setting up for a great video
  • Tools and techniques for shooting a video
  • Finalizing and sharing a videos online

Skill level: Beginner – Intermediate

About this course: Video marketing is making a huge splash online and on social media. But one thing what we consistently hear is that marketers aren’t quite sure where to start. Yet, videos have the potential to engage an audience in new and exciting ways – Just look at BuzzFeed Tasty for an example of the power of video!

In this short class, Nicole Farb shows how you can create your own video in a scrappy, easy, and high-quality way and how she has seen huge success with it in the past. Perfect for marketers and social media managers just getting started with video.

Over to you!

As Malcolm Gladwell said in his book Outliers, “It takes roughly ten thousand hours of practice to achieve mastery in a field.”

Malcolm’s quote just goes to show that with enough effort, patience, and practice, you can learn anything you put your mind to. We hope that this lists helps you to find some great online social media classes and marketing resources.

Have you taken any online social media classes or marketing classes recently that you truly loved? We’d love to hear them!

Please feel free to leave us a comment below and we may add it to our list!

from Social https://blog.bufferapp.com/social-media-classes

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How to Create a Rollover Effect in Adobe Muse

Muse For You - How to Add a Rollover Effect - Adobe Muse CC

Add a Rollover Effect to your Adobe Muse website. No Coding Skills Required.

 Muse For You - Adobe Muse CC Adobe Muse CC Logo

Subtle animations and rollovers can really make a website more dynamic. Whether you are showcasing a product or giving more information about an image, rollovers can be very effective.

Adobe Muse makes it really easy to create a rollover effect via their states panel. The states panel consists of four different states. They are:

  • Normal
  • Rollover
  • Mouse Down
  • Active

For each of the states you can change the color, border, and image for the state. This allows for a unique rollover effect when applying to images. Also with the later versions of Adobe Muse the transition dialog was introduced for more fluid rollovers and transitions. So rather than a quick change when rolling over the image, the image can now fade in and out of another image.

Adobe Muse CC also integrates seamlessly with Adobe Photoshop CC so you can take different layers in Photoshop and apply them to the different states via the states panel. An example of this would be taking one layer in Photoshop and applying it to the normal state, and then taking another layer in the same Photoshop file and applying it to the rollover state. This will give you a nice rollover effect in Adobe Muse all from the same Photoshop file.

Via the Adobe Creative Cloud you can add vectors from Adobe Illustrator CC to your Creative Cloud library. You can then drag and drop those vector images as SVG files into Adobe Muse. Placing these images in rectangles allows you to create rollover states in Adobe Muse.

muse-for-you-how-to-add-rollover-effects-1-adobe-muse-cc-web-design-ledger

Images being prepared Adobe Illustrator CC

Muse For You - How to Add a Rollover Effect - Adobe Muse CC

Images added to different states in Adobe Muse CC

The steps are as follows:

1. Create a rectangle in Adobe Muse.

2 . Fill the rectangle with an image for the normal state. The image can be added by going to the “Fill” option in the upper toolbar and then clicking on “Add Image.” You can select any image or a Photoshop file. If it is a Photoshop file you can select which layer you would like to add for the image. You can also select the fitting and position for the image within the “Fill” section.

3. With the rectangle selected go to the “States Panel” in the upper left hand corner of the Adobe Muse interface. Here click on “Normal” and select “Rollover.” You are now on the rollover state for the rectangle.

4. Fill the rectangle with an image or Photoshop file for the rollover state.

5. You can also add a “Mouse Down” state or an “Active State.”

6. Go to File > Preview Page in Browser to test and preview the rollover effect.

7. Done.

In the video above I go over how to create rollover states in Adobe Muse CC using Adobe Photoshop CC and Adobe Illustrator CC.

For more video tutorials and widgets for Adobe Muse visit http://museforyoushop.com. Happy Musing :).

Read More at How to Create a Rollover Effect in Adobe Muse

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/how-to-create-a-rollover-effect-in-adobe-muse/

Top Strategies for Taking Your Online Community Offline with Marketing Events – Stefanie Grieser [SSM019]

How do you go from having no conference — from almost having no marketing team, just you being the 9th employee and one of the very first marketers — to a marketing conference of 1,000 attendees, acclaimed in your industry, a must-attend destination on the annual events calendar?

How do you do all of that in just four years?

We had the pleasure of speaking with Stefanie Grieser, International Marketing Manager at Unbounce, about the multifaceted strategies that go into marketing and growing one of the most successful marketing conferences in the industry. And how marketing events help to engage your audience and create delighted customers for life.

A huge thank you to Stefanie for jam-packing this episode with actionable wisdom and takeaways for social media managers and marketers looking for the best ways to start, grow, and nurture successful marketing and social media events.

How to listen: iTunes | Google Play | SoundCloud | Stitcher | RSS

This episode is available on:

In this episode, here’s what you’ll learn:

Stefanie Grieser shares the fascinating story and strategy of how Unbounce went from small meetups to hosting one of the largest marketing events in the industry. You’ll also learn other great things like:

  • How social media can help you market and grow your offline community
  • Why measuring the ROI of events is challenging, but important
  • Key factors and strategies in promoting marketing events and conferences
  • Where sales and acquiring new customers fits into the event marketing cycle

2 Key Takeaways for Successful Event Marketing from Stefanie

In Stefanie’s words…

1.Keep in mind the backbone of any great event is great content

“Keep in mind the backbone of any great event is great content: deliver great value for your audience and an audience. If you keep those two things top of the priority list I think you’ll succeed in event marketing. Again, I said this throughout the interview, you can have all the bells and whistles and you could be worried and stressed about catering, but at the end of the day that’s lower on the priority list to make a great event.”

2. Keep it simple at the start

“I would also advise people that are thinking about doing event marketing, whether it’s a conference or a smaller meetup, to keep it simple at the start. You don’t need to over-complicate things. Again, keep those two things top of mind, an audience and great content. Really keep it simple. I think the first year you can get sidelined. We’re going to have all these different tracks and all these people and it can get complicated really quickly.”

I think if you simplify things, especially if you’re a one person team. I was by myself. I was doing this. I was spearheading things from the ground up and there’s a lot of people around me would be like, “Oh, what about this? What about this?” I had to … It’s so great to think about all these extras and think about all these different tracks or what we could do here, but at the end of the day I think keeping it simple and keeping those two things top of mind will really serve you well.”

 Mentionable Quotes and Shareable Snippets

Event Marketing Tips with Stefanie Grieser

In Stefanie’s words…

“Really, event marketing is an extension of your content marketing. That’s the backbone to a really successful event. You can have all the bells and whistles, and events oftentimes get overshadowed by all these bells and whistles and great AV and balloons and swag. But really the backbone of a great event is an audience, the people there. That makes an event: a community and great content, valuable content that people can learn from.”

Show Notes and Other Memorable Moments

Thanks a million for checking out this episode! Below are the websites and other tidbits that were mentioned in today’s podcast about creating incredible Facebook communities using groups. If you have any questions for us, feel free to drop us a line in the comments and we’ll respond right away!

Companies and Events Mentioned by Stefanie

Great Quotes

  • “It’s a very big word, but really like any project or startup or even marketing channel, you should think of it as an MVP. Start small. We didn’t start by saying, ‘We’re going to do a conference. We’re going to pull off a conference.’ Yes, we kind of had the endgame in mind: It would be nice to do a conference. But why don’t we take little steps to get there?”
  • “These communities could really be strengthened through in-person encounters. Unbounce is a software company. We provide marketing and conversion software to marketers, and all of our interactions are done online. Building an in-person marketing strategy really actually strengthens some of the ties that we have to our community, to our customers, to people that could be customers — future customers I call them.”
  • “It showed us that people want in-person experiences and events. They want in-person connections. That was one little thing on the road to a bigger event. We did five or six meetups in different cities, and we found that it was really valuable. People were learning a lot. They were a high touch opportunity.”
  • “If you think of an event as a marketing campaign you are driving and you’re using different levers to promote your event to get people to come. Social is one of those, social is something that we integrate into a marketing campaign. It’s always an aspect. Okay, we have this campaign, you have this event. How are we going to tell people about it? We have an audience on social. We have a community on social so we’ll tell them through social media.”

How to Say Hello to Stefanie (and us)

Stefanie “Stef” Grieser is a must-follow marketer on Twitter and she would love to say “Hello” at smgrieser.

Thanks for listening! We’d love to connect with you at @buffer on Twitter or with the hashtag #bufferpodcast.

Enjoy the show? It’d mean the world to us if you’d be up for giving us a rating and review on iTunes!

About the Show

The Science of Social Media is a podcast for marketers and social media managers looking for inspiration, ideas, and results for their social media strategies. Each week, we interview one of the very best in social media marketing from brands in every industry. You will learn the latest tactics on social media, the best tools to use, the smartest workflows, and the best goal-setting advice. It is our hope that each episode you’ll find one or two gems to use with your social media marketing!

The Science of Social Media is proudly made by the Buffer team. Feel free to get in touch with us for any thoughts, ideas, or feedback.

from Social https://blog.bufferapp.com/stefanie-grieser-show-notes

How Web Hosting Can Impact Page Load Speed

web hosting page load

Page load speed is a very important factor when it comes to the overall success of a business’s website or blog. And it is something that should not be taken lightly. It can affect almost everything; from your conversions, SEO and rankings, time on your site, bounce rate, and the entire user experience. If you dip in all of those areas, this could easily result in loss of revenue and customers. Today we will explore just how much page speed is impacted by certain web hosts and why you might want to reconsider using a cheap shared host.

Speed is a Ranking Factor

Google announced way back in 2010 that page load speed is a ranking factor. What that means is that sites with a faster page load speed could in turn rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). In Google’s Site Performance for Webmasters video, Developer Programs Tech Lead Maile Ohye, states that “two seconds is the threshold for e-commerce website acceptability. At Google, we aim for under a half-second.”

And fast forward to today and we now have Google launching the mobile-first index. This means that the ranking factor is also heavily looking at mobile optimization. You can almost guarantee that whatever weight they placed on the speed ranking factor before that it will be increasing. So you need to ensure that you have a fast responsive loading site, along with possibly an AMP implementation.

You can use free tools like Google PageSpeed Insights or Pingdom to test your website’s page load speed. They will inform you how fast your website is and offer suggestions on how to improve it, such as leveraging browser caching or minimizing redirects.

pingdom speed test

Page Load Speed Can Affect Conversions

A  slow page load speed can also affect your conversions and sales. For an e-commerce site, the last thing you need is to be losing revenue simply because your website is too slow. According to research from Kissmetrics,

“A 1-second delay in page response can result in a 7% reduction in conversions.”

2-speed-affects-conversions

Example: Let’s say your website loads in 3 seconds, and you have a product that sells for $200. On average you have 1000 conversions per week, equalling $200,000 in total sales. If you were to migrate to a faster web host and bring the page load speed down to 2 seconds, at 7%, that means you could potentially increase your weekly profits by over $14,000 a week!

Kyle Rush from the 2011 Obama for America campaign site showed through A/B testing that a 3-second page time reduction (from 5 seconds to 2 seconds) improved donations by 14%, resulting in an increase of over $34 million in contributions.

There have been countless studies proving that speed does affect your conversion rates.

Time On Site / Dwell Time

In Google Analytics, average time on site is a type of visitor report that provides data on the amount of time (in minutes or seconds) visitors have spent on your website. This is sometimes also referred to as “average session duration” or “dwell time.” The higher this number, generally the better.

average time on site

A couple ways to keep your time on site higher is to write better and more engaging content that will keep the visitor on your site. Another way to structure your site in an organized fashion so people kind find what they are looking for. But speed is definitely a huge factor in average time on site as well. If a visitor gets frustrated with how fast it is to navigate your site they will most likely leave immediately. Ensure not only your homepage is fast, but your entire site.

Bounce Rate

Bounce Rate is the percentage of single-page sessions (i.e. sessions in which the person left your site from the entrance page without interacting with the page). According to another study by Kissmetrics, a whopping 40% of people abandon a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load!

Here are some typical bounce rate averages according to types of content and industries:

  • 40-60% Content websites
  • 30-50% Lead generation sites
  • 70-98% Blogs
  • 20-40% Retail sites
  • 10-30% Service sites
  • 70-90% Landing pages

One of the easiest ways to keep people from hitting that back button in their browser is to simply ensure that it loads fast! This can include even diving into more advanced optimization methods such as improving your TTFB and initial HTTP request. A content delivery network (CDN) is a great way to improve TTFB as it will help cache your static assets closer to the visitor. But one of the primary factors in this is the configuration of your web host’s servers.

How Premium Hosts Stack Up Against Shared Hosts

There are countless ways to improve page load speed on your website, such as:

  1. Using a CDN to cache content closer to the user
  2. Improving TTFB
  3. Optimizing images
  4. Lazy loading content
  5. Caching
  6. Being smart with web fonts
  7. Optimize CSS code and delivery

But the number one factor that is going to drive the overall load times of your pages down is choosing a fast web hosting provider. And to be honest, it is one of the easiest. While it is great to save money, hosting is one area in which you should be very careful as choosing a bad provider could actually affect your revenue going forward. We recommend looking at hosting as an investment in your business/website and therefore skip the shared hosting route and go for a premium or managed host. You will be much happier in the long run.

Premium web hosts typically use a much faster technology stack based on the latest and greatest in the industry. Some things for 2017 that you will want to make sure they have are PHP 7 or HHVM, NGINX, MariaDB, HTTP/2, and premium DNS options. This combination has been shown to be very fast when it comes to loading any type of website, from a static site, to Drupal, and of course WordPress.

Speed Tests

To show you just how much web hosts differ when it comes to performance, we decided to run a few tests. Here is a comparison of Kinsta, a high-performance managed WordPress host, vs a 3rd party shared host. Both are configured in the exact same way and are approximately the same distance from Pingdom’s testing server.

Kinsta Speed Test

We did a fresh install of WordPress on Kinsta, nothing is configured other than SSL. It is running the default 2016 theme. We ran 5 speed tests on Pingdom and took the average. As you can see the fresh install clocked in at 386 ms, which according to Pingdom is 98% faster than all other tested sites.

kinsta fresh install page load speed

3rd Party Speed Test on Shared Host

We then replicated the exact same setup on a 3rd party shared host. We did a fresh install of WordPress and configured SSL. It was also setup with the default 2016 theme. We then ran 5-speed tests on Pingdom and took the average. As you can see the fresh install clocked in at 1.00 second.

shared host fresh install speed test

So in this scenario the premium host, Kinsta, had 61.4% faster page load speeds! Why is there such a large difference? Here are a few reasons:

NGINX

Kinsta uses NGINX whereas the 3rd party shared host was using Apache. NGINX has been proven to be lightweight and fast. Chris Lea said, “Apache is like Microsoft Word. It has a million options but you only need six. NGINX does those six things, and it does five of them 50 times faster than Apache.”

Here is a quick look at the top million busiest websites (see below). As you can see in the trending graph, Apache is losing market share while NGINX is rapidly growing. Large websites like upwork, themeforest, wordpress.org, quora.com, and dropbox all use NGINX.

websites using nginx

Img src: NGINX vs Apache

Server-Level Caching

Kinsta, like many premium WordPress hosts, use server-level full page and object caching to deliver pages lightning fast. The shared host we were using had no such technology in place. We could fiddle with caching plugins but then you should be looking at time involved hassling with this. With premium hosts it is a lot easier to just install and go! Joe from Human Made did a great comparison of the Batcache caching plugin vs Varnish, a server-level caching approach. As you can see under heavy loads server-level caching won by a mile!

server level caching

Premium DNS

Kinsta had Amazon Route 53, which is a premium DNS provider. The shared host was simply using their free included DNS. DNS works like a phonebook for the internet, as it is a mapping of your domain to an IP address. There are slower and faster DNS providers out there. Amazon of course is one of the faster ones since they have an enormous infrastructure and network. Faster DNS lookup times can further increase the speed of your site.


And don’t forget DNS Doomsday, besides performance, a premium DNS provider is also important when it comes to reliability and uptime for your site.

HTTP/2

HTTP/2 is a new protocol designed to speed up connections with better multiplexing, parallelism, HPACK compression with Huffman encoding, the ALPN extension, and server push. Because of browser support, SSL/TLS is required to utilize HTTP/2.

The performance of HTTP/2 is a lot better than that of HTTP/1.1. For example, with server push capability HTTP/2 allows servers to respond with a page’s full contents other than the information in the browser’s cache. Efficient compression of HTTP header files minimizes protocol overhead to improve performance with each browser request and server response.

http2

In our tests above, Kinsta was utilizing HTTP/2 on their servers which the shared hosting provider was not. You can easily see this by checking the header requests in Chrome Devtools network panel (as seen below).

HTTP/2 Supported (Kinsta)

http/2 kinsta

HTTP/2 Not Supported – Still Running over HTTP/1.1 (Shared host)

http/2 not supported

HTTP/2 is simply a must now for secure connections!

Overcrowding Issue

Another issue with shared hosting is that they overcrowd their servers. Typically shared hosts don’t make any money on actual hosting customers, due to the overhead of support. For example, the shared hosting plan being tested above only cost us $10 a year!

crowded servers

They make most of their revenue on upsells and 3rd party add-ons such as domain registrations, SSL certificates, etc. Due to the fact they have very low margins they will tend to put as many customers on the same servers as they can until it starts to slow down. You can guarantee that at some point your site will be affected. And unless you have a performance monitoring tool running you will never know at what time it happens.

With premium hosts they normally go a different route. For example, with Kinsta above, they use Linux containers (LXC), and LXD to orchestrate them, on top of Google Cloud Platform which enables them to completely isolate each WordPress site. This is much more secure and when it comes to performance the Google Compute engines allow them to sale the sites automatically. The overcrowding and scaling issue is simply not an issue at all.

Summary

As you can see, page load speed is super important, as it can affect everything from your SEO, time on site, bounce rate, and conversions. Choosing a premium or managed hosting provider can be one of the smartest decisions you make for your business or blog; as it plays one of the biggest roles in improving your page load speeds. The old saying “You get what you pay for…” comes into play here. Think of hosting as an investment and choose wisely, as they greatly differ in terms of performance and technologies being offered.

Read More at How Web Hosting Can Impact Page Load Speed

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/how-web-hosting-can-impact-page-load-speed/

5 Things You Need to Know About WeTransfer’s Redesign

wetransfer redesign

The filesharing company WeTransfer has pulled out probably the best redesign we’ve seen this year.
To be completely honest, I’m a bit buyest when I say that, because WeTransfer is a product that amazes me through its simplicity.

WeTransfer is the kind of product that embraced simplicity at its core and built the whole user experience with the KISS rule in mind. (Keep It Simple Stupid) Sometimes, all it takes to disrupt an industry it’s simplicity and delivering a straightforward experience to the users. Creating a clutter free design is definitely a difficult process. It takes courage and a very good understanding of your audience to be able to sacrifice features, visual elements or conventional design “must do’s” to the detriment of what’s relevant to your user.
Companies like Teamweek, Medium and of course, WeTransfer, are leveraging their simple design for creating a tool tremendously accessible to the masses.

What WeTransfer did with its new redesign is to push the limits of simplicity even further and created an utterly intuitive file sharing platform that is suited both for their Plus customers and for the average one-time user.

I’ve asked WeTransfer’s Senior Designer, Thomas Schrijer, for a reason why the redesign makes WeTranfer the go-to platform when it comes to filesharing, and he gave me five.

1. We Optimized the transfer window.

Our biggest challenge was improving the iconic transfer window. We had a few things that our users (and ourselves) wanted improved. There was no good overview when you added a lot of files, multiple email addresses or a long message. We made the behavior within the box a lot smarter. The box will now grow to fit all the contents. When you write a long message for example, the field will expand so the overview remains.  wetransfer redesign

2. Clear navigation

We made massive improvements on the navigation side of things. In the previous version we had two labels attached to the left side of the box, which barely anyone noticed. Now we’ve put three main navigation items at the top right part of the screen which make it a lot easier to reach out for help, learn more about our service and manage your Plus account. All the information is presented in the panel, that covers the wallpaper. Because a piece of the wallpaper is always in sight, you’re able to go back from wherever you are. Wetransfer redesign

3. Our Plus users get way more attention on the new WeTransfer

There is now way more space to manage transfers and contacts. We’ve made a distinct section to personalize your wetransfer experience, under the label Profile. But this is just the start, we’re already thinking of ways to make our Plus users even happier. wetransfer redesgin

 

4. Brand refresh

With the new site also comes a new logo and identity. The focus is moving away from transferring, and towards we. We’ve collaborated with Paul van der Laan from Bold Monday to help us sharpen our ideas on the logo. Next to the logo we’ve introduced a new colour palette, updated typography and a visual language around particles.

wetransfer logo

 

5. Illustrations

When people interact with our service, they come across a few important moments. We’ve worked together with illustrators to mark these moments. Now when your transfer is done, you’ll get a thumbs up by a shark, or a cool pug smiling at you. We’ve added a level of emotion to our product by doing this. And it makes sense, because working with the creative community is a big part of our DNA.

wetransfer redesign

 

 

Read More at 5 Things You Need to Know About WeTransfer’s Redesign

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/wetransfer-redesign-5-things-need-to-know/

How To Center a Logo Within the Browser in Adobe Muse

Muse For You - Browser Centering Widget - Adobe Muse CC

Center Your Logo Vertically and Horizontally Within the Browser in Adobe Muse. No Coding Skills Required.

 Muse For You - Adobe Muse CC Adobe Muse CC Logo

Branding plays a big part in web design and most websites are branded with a logo and a slogan. A lot of times web designers and developers look for the best way to initially show the brand when someone visits their website. That is why I decided to create the Browser Centering Widget. With this widget you can initially center any element directly in the center of the browser. The element will be vertically centered and horizontally centered across all devices until the user scrolls, and then the element scrolls with the website. You can also fix the element in the center of the browser. This will insure that the brand or logo gets maximum attention and looks great when the user first visits the website. In the video above I go over how to use the Browser Centering Widget in your Adobe Muse website.

The steps are as follows:

1. Drag and drop the widget from the library panel onto your Adobe Muse website. If you do not see the library panel go to Window > Library.

2. Assign the graphic style name that is in the widget to the element you would like to center via the graphic styles panel. If you do not see the graphic styles panel go to Window > Graphic Styles.

3. Place the element at the very top of your Adobe Muse website. Element can be anywhere at the top.

4. If you would like the element to stay fixed in the center and not scroll with the website select ‘Fixed in Center’ within the widget.

5. Done.

 Muse For You - Browser Centering Widget - Adobe Muse CC

You now have a centered element on your website. No matter what device the user is on you can be sure that the centered element will be the first thing they see.

For more video tutorials and widgets for Adobe Muse visit http://museforyoushop.com.

Happy Musing :).

Read More at How To Center a Logo Within the Browser in Adobe Muse

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/center-logo-within-browser-adobe-muse/

5 Good Tools That Will Help You Collaborate Better

2

Design teams are usually made up of individuals having diverse yet complementary skills. Under proper leadership, they can do what is needed to ensure a project’s success. If not applied properly however, the skills they bring to the table can undermine the chances of a project’s success.

A team leader’s role, is to take these individual team members, and mold them into a cohesive group that will work together toward a common goal.

The team leader’s job can become much easier. How? By choosing tools to help manage the workflow, and encourage collaboration among team members. Yet, even the best tools can’t do it all. The team leader needs to play a proactive role in getting the team working together and focused on a common aim. The following key issues must be addressed for that to happen:

  1. Constantly clarify roles. If roles are not clear, or allowed to overlap; oversights, duplication of effort, and/or confusion will likely result.
  2. Explicitly state team member responsibilities. Responsibilities are best assigned to individuals rather than groups to ensure things get done.
  3. Identify who is responsible for making a specific decision. If more than one person is responsible, how decisions will be reached needs to be spelled out.
  4. Continuously review team and project goals. This ensures that everyone will be focused on the tasks at hand.
  5. Use pre-selected tools for specific functions. This ensures the right tools are being applied to the right tasks.

The following 5 tools offer solutions for project management, workflow support, and team collaboration concerns:

Wake

1

Wake offers a solution to a problem designers often face; how to share information and collaborate among team members without interrupting a project’s workflow.

With Wake, you can upload and share sketches, screenshots, or other information, without ever interrupting your Photoshop, Sketch, or Illustrator design flow.

For example, you can use Wake’s iPhone app to capture notebook or whiteboard content and instantly share it with your team. The app allows you to share and see project feedback on the go.

This ability to share information without interrupting workflow makes the entire design process more transparent for your entire team, even those outside of design. With Wake, information can be shared publicly, so everyone knows what everyone is working on; or shared privately with selected individuals or stakeholders.

 

InVision

2

InVision is an excellent choice if you need a tool that integrates prototyping, workflow management, and collaboration functionality into a single platform. With InVision, you can avoid the need to select a variety of tools to perform a variety of tasks. Whether you are a team leader or a freelancer, this design-driven project management tool will manage your prototyping, design sharing, collaboration and modification, and user test activities from a central location.

InVision makes prototyping easy. Simply upload a static design file, add animations, transformations, and gestures, and you can create an interactive, high-fidelity prototype in about 5 minutes.

InVision has been used by approximately 2 million designers, including freelancers, design agencies, and design teams working for major corporations. If you request a free trial, you’ll be allowed to work with a single prototype for as long as you wish while you learn more about this tool’s functions and features.

 

Active Collab

3

Using separate tools for task management, time tracking, and invoicing sometimes makes sense, but it’s almost always better to do it all using a single platform, like Active Collab. Active Collab provides a one-stop solution for all your team’s business needs.

Features include project tracking, advanced to-do lists to keep things organized, team collaboration, time tracking, and invoicing. Active Collab runs on the cloud so no setup is required on your part – you’ll be up and running within 2 minutes. Also, you have the option to self-host the app on your own server for a one-time fee.

More than 200,000 designers and project managers currently use Active Collab on a regular basis. Its 30-day free trial should give you plenty of time to test it and see if it’s the right fit for you.

 

Paymo

4

Paymo is well suited for teams working for small and medium-size businesses who are looking for a tool that makes project management easy. Paymo’s progress visual Kanban boards allows you to create your workflows and move the associated tasks through sequential and logical steps. Tasks can easily be changed or added, you can organize tasks into lists and, using drag and drop, simply reorder them when necessary.

Paymo’s features include a real-time collaboration capability, project templates designed to save you time, Gantt charts, and a dashboard to provide instant project overviews. A 15-day unlimited free trial is yours for the asking.

 

Pinnery

5

Pinnery is the perfect project planning tool. Place your ideas on Pinnery’s color-coded board, move the ones you wish to pursue to the to do list, attach files and pictures to each item on your list, check what is in progress and what has been accomplished, and before you know it, your project is done.

Pinnery keeps everything organized, everything can be shared with everyone, and a perfect overview of project status is always available. This app also encourages team collaboration, no installation is required on your part, and you can get started for free.

 

Ending Thoughts

No matter what your workflow or project management issues may be, you’ll find the right solution here. Depending on the tool or tools you select, your workflow and task management, collaboration, or project planning needs will be in good hands. And you can devote more time to design issues or other pressing issues.

Several of these tools feature mobile apps than allow you to check status or coordinate with your team or project stakeholders while on the go. Freelancers can benefit from several of these tools, while others are best suited for use by teams and team leaders.

Read More at 5 Good Tools That Will Help You Collaborate Better

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/5-good-tools-that-will-help-you-collaborate-better/