7 FREE Online Classes Every Funeral Professional Should Take

Every January, people make New Year’s Resolutions to better their lives, their business and even themselves. But making the resolutions is the easy part. It’s actually creating an actionable plan of how you are going to achieve them that’s difficult — especially if it involves learning something new that you have never done before.

Luckily, there are free online resources that mean continuing education is easier than ever before. From essential business skills to the artistry of flower arranging and room design, you can brush up on skills or learn new ones more easily than ever. In a profession where change is constant and your most valuable asset is your ability to keep up with today’s families, a commitment to learning is crucial.

We’ve explored the web to find some of the best courses you can take this year to help your business reach new heights. In 2018, commit to your new year’s resolution to continue learning and grow your business (and your personal know-how) to new heights with online courses like:


Business Foundations

As a new or seasoned small business owner or manager of a firm, there’s no such thing as having too much information about foundational business concepts. With this free course designed to help you “speak business,” you can sharpen the skills you need to better manage your company in an evolving business landscape.

Click here to access the Business Foundations Course


Flower Arranging 101

With only a $.99 three-month trial, use Skillshare to access a massive library of courses, including several options for learning how to arrange flowers like a pro. This may seem like something you’re better off leaving to your florists, but what if an arrangement somehow arrives damaged just minutes before a service is set to begin? Or what if a boxed flower delivery arrives from a sympathetic friend of the family, and it’s up to you to assemble the arrangement into something beautiful?

These instances don’t need to be cause for panic. With just a few hours of your time, you can equip yourself with the skills needed to save the day with confidence. Because as a funeral professional, you know better than most anyone that the little details make all the difference.

Click here to access Flower Arranging Lessons


Fundamentals of Financial Accounting

While you may not have gone into the funeral profession to strike it rich, the fact remains that the financials of your business will underpin much of what you’re able to accomplish, who you are able to employ, and how fully and meaningfully you are able to serve your client families.

When it comes to accounting for a small business, it can be tempting to push the dollars and cents aside until tax season rolls around, at which point you meet your accountant with a folder full of papers you haven’t thumbed through in months. But an online course that gives you a firm understanding of the way your financials work with and against your business goals can only help you flourish in business, expand your offerings, and help more families in their time of need.

Click here to access the Fundamentals of Financial Accounting Course


Inbound Marketing

In the funeral profession, it could be easy to take a passive approach to marketing your business and assume that families will find you when they’re in need of your services. But it’s important to understand how much competition is out there, not just from other funeral homes in your area, but also due to the growing belief that a memorial service is an outdated tradition.

It’s essential to the health of your firm that you have a marketing strategy that encourages people to follow your brand and feel a connection to it. A leader in digital marketing, Hubspot offers a free course to help you make an imprint on the digital landscape, making it easier for client families to find you and believe in what you offer.

Click here to access the Inbound Marketing Certification Course


Photoshop 101

When it comes to creating meaningful tributes and visually stunning memorials, no skill comes in handier than expert photo editing. Families often have pictures of their loved ones that they wish to include in photo products like prayer cards, slideshows or other visuals, but those photos are not always in the best shape. Knowing the basics of photo editing with Photoshop can help you remove red-eye, colorize old photos, restore images or highlight what’s special about them, so you can help families remember their loved ones in the most meaningful, larger-than-life kind of way.

Click here to access the Photoshop 101 Tutorials


Room Design

With those nearly-free three months for $.99 on Skillshare, spend some time learning the basics (and more) of interior design. But don’t let the word “interior” fool you — skills in this department will help you stage and create memorable, meaningful events in whatever type of space, conventional or not, your client family chooses to honor their loved one.

We know that now more than ever before, families are opting outside of the norm for their funeral services as they discover original, unique ways to say goodbye and celebrate a life lived. Whether you find yourself arranging a service in your parlor, on a mountaintop, at a local park or in a family’s home, having the skills to maximize any space and create a meaningful backdrop for a heartfelt service will take your offerings to the next level.

Click here to access Interior Design Lessons


Social Media 101

The world of Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest has taken over traditional advertising channels. Where radio, print, and TV ads used to be strategic investments, social media ads now rule.

But don’t be fooled by the encouragement you may hear to stick to an “authentic” or “organic” social media voice — while it is true that the conversations you lead on social media should come from a genuine place, there is still room for strategy to ensure your conversations are being had with the people whose attention you want to capture. Learn how to reach the families in your community with a course on the basics of making an impact on today’s most popular media outlets.

Click here to access the Social Media Quickstarter


BONUS LEARNING: Tools You Can’t Live Without 

As a funeral professional, we know that finding time to focus on productivity seems like a pipe dream. That’s why we’ve created a collection our favorite tools and applications for funeral success in one master collection: our ‘Tools You Can’t Live Without’ Board. This curated collection is an ever-growing resource for funeral business tools, business productivity solutions, as well as  work and life tips in one place.

While it’s not necessarily an online course, this collection of tools features a walk through of what each tool is, how you can use it, and features additional resources to help you learn more. Put these tools to use to help you better support families, increase your productivity, get organized and spark inspiration.

Click here to access our collection of ‘Tools You Can’t Live Without’


Rochelle Rietow


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