Jan 12 2016 :: by Robbie
"The only thing worse than starting something and failing… is not starting something."
It has been a BIG year.
An improved product.
Exciting new clients.
We've learned a ton! Not only from personal experiences, but from the failures and success stories of other startups around the world.
It's mind boggling the amount of content available online these days.
Books, podcasts, seminars, meetups, interviews, conferences...
Not to mentioned over 2 million blog posts flooding the interwebs every single day!
For busy entrepreneurs, the sheer quantity of information can be overwhelming.
Where do you start?
Over the last 12 months I've compiled a list of the top 43 startup blogs. Each one is authored by entrepreneurs who have had huge success in the business world and share everything they've learned along the way. These resources make it easy to stay up-to-date on a huge range of topics.
New SaaS growth studies. Check.
Best practices for building a killer sales force. You betchya.
A guide to secure startup venture funding. Done.
Step-by-step formulas to close 7 figure clients. All there.
How to go from zero to $100M ARR. Covered.
This is a one-stop guide to some of the most valuable startup resources you'll find anywhere online.
Growth, marketing, accounting, expert interviews, funding...
It's all here.
Add each of the startup blogs to your RSS reader (we like Feedly) and elevate your startup in 2016.
Below you will find a short description of why each startup blog made the list, a headshot, links to each blog's twitter account, as well as 3 must-read posts from each blog.
Let's dive in!
Top 43 Startup Blogs To Watch in 2016
#1. Sixteen Ventures / Twitter
Sixteen ventures is the brainchild of Lincoln Murphy, a customer success and acquisition expert who has helped over 300 SaaS companies accelerate their growth by optimizing the Customer Lifecycle, from acquisition to retention. Lincoln has been featured in Inc Magazine, Fast Company, Venture Hacks and has spoken at industry events including SaaS University, HostingCon and Pulse. We devour every piece of content he publishes.
CAC cost is the key to scaling your company
Success milestones and the path to desired outcomes
SaaS churn kills growth; Customer retention is a growth accelerator
#2. Both Sides of the Table / Twitter
Both Sides of the Table is the creation of entrepreneur turned VC, Mark Suster. He sold one of his startups, Koral, to Saleforce and is now General Partner at Upfront Ventures. This blog provides a lot of valuable lessons to startup founders.
Why successful people focus on the bottom end of the funnel
What I've learned about venture funding
Do more with less
#3. Predictable Revenue / Twitter
Aaron Ross is the founder and best selling author of Predictable Revenue. He has been teaching companies of all sizes how to double and triple new sales since he helped Salesforce grow from $5M to $100M.
How to find a sales marketing niche
4 ways to ensure your sales pipeline never dries up
4 mistakes 95% of people make with cold calls
#4. OnStartups / Twitter
OnStartups was started by HubSpot founder Dharmesh Shah. The blog is a goldmine of actionable advice for any entrepreneur.
5 mistakes every startup founder should make
An early stage founder's quick and dirty guide to growth
Do fewer things better
#5. Tomasz Tunguz / Twitter
This startup blog is a personal favorite! Tomasz Tunguz is a partner at Redpoint VC
and writes daily, data-driven blog posts about key questions facing startups including how to fund raise, startup benchmarks, management best practices and team building. All his insights are based on years of experience working directly with some of the most successful startups on the planet.
The compounding returns of content marketing
Anatomy of a customer reference
Counterintuitive sales funnel efficiency
#6. CoElevate / Twitter
This is the blog of Brian Balfour
, currently the VP of Growth at HubSpot
. Brian has started multiple VC backed companies, and grown user bases to millions of active daily users. His articles on growth and user acquisition have been featured on sites such Forbes and OnStartups. He regularly shares long form actionable growth essays on the CoElevate blog. With endorsements from people like Hiten Shah and Noah Kagan, you'll quickly realize why this blog is on the shortlist.
How we apply focus to grow faster
How to drive insights for growth
Strategize, test, measure: The bullseye framework
#7. Vero / Twitter
Jimmy Daly has quickly turned the Vero blog into a go-to resource for anyone wanting to learn how to set up successful onboarding and email automation campaigns. This blog has been at the top of the RSS feed for a long time. It always delivers at least one "aha" moment.
The ultimate lifecycle email marketing guide
15 retention emails to reduce churn and keep your customers happy
4 data-driven SaaS onboarding emails you should be sending
#8. Copyhackers / Twitter
Joanna Wiebe delivers one of the best copywriting resources you'll find anywhere online. In her own words, "I teach startups how to convert like mofos using li'l ol' words, old-school copywriting and new-skool smartz". If you're a startup founder, micropreneur or marketer looking to boost conversions with your words, this should be a first stop.
The ultimate guide to no-pain copywriting (or, every copywriting formula ever)
How to write a kickstarter pitch
Choices, consequences and the reason every popup box needs 2 buttons: Opt in, and opt out
#9. Close.io / Twitter
This is our favorite blog when it comes to building successful SaaS sales strategies. Steli Efti is one of the best closers on the planet. His posts often feature interviews with other successful startup founders where they break down the exact processes you need to develop profitable sales processes, hire top sellers, build compensation plans and establish early sales in strongly product-focused startups. Please give this one your undivided attention.
13 killer b2b sales questions to close more deals
5 pieces of wisdom that will change the way you sell SaaS
5 steps for startups to re-engage past demos and close lost prospects
#10. SaaStr / Twitter
SaaStr was created in 2012 and has quickly risen to become one of the most respected online resources for SaaS startups and entrpreneurs, collecting over 2.5M views a month. It's founder, Jason Lemkin, is an expert in the field, sharing everything he has learned going from $0 to $100M ARR. Lemkin started 2 companies and has led or sourced the first VC investments in numerous SaaS/ enterprise start-ups such as Guidespark, Pipedrive, Salesloft and RainforestQA. This blog is a must-read!
So, we raised a $180,000,000 venture fund. What I learned.
The top 10 mistakes first-time SaaS founders make
How to sell to SMBs and still get to $100M ARR
#11. ConversionXL / Twitter
sells money for a living. He is a world renowned conversion optimization expert who has built a reputation on helping companies of all sizes find where they are leaking money and fix it. He started the ConversionXL blog, which is now the #1 conversion optimization resource online. Be careful, this blog can suck you in for hours!
11 things that work more than not in A/B tests
How to write copy people actually read
Retention optimization: How to increase the value of a conversion
#12. Less Accounting / Twitter
Less Accounting provides accounting software for small businesses. Their blog is a treasure trove of great advice to help small business owners enjoy working with their money again.
Net 30 vs Net 60: The best way to get your business paid
Small business tax tips
How bootstrappers can compete with funded startups and get customers
#13. Steve Blank / Twitter
Steve Blank is a Silicon Valley serial-entrepreneur who is recognized for developing the Customer Development methodology, which launched the Lean Startup movement. He also hosts a must-see weekly radio show powered by Wharton School titled "Entrepreneurs Are Everywhere".
Why Build, Measure, Learn – isn’t just throwing things against the wall to see if they work – the Minimal Viable Product
What do I do now? The startup lifecycle
There are 4 types of startups
#14. Shopify / Twitter
There is a reason over 100,000 people have signed up for the Shopify blog. They share uber actionable content on a daily basis. A lot of the content has a strong ecommerce focus, but there is a lot of other content related to list building, traffic generation, conversion optimization and a host of topics positioned to help businesses grow sales. We check this one out every day!
How we built an ecommerce business from scratch and generated $916.22 in revenue in 3 days
Shipping fulfillment 101: A step-by-step guide to getting products to your customers
7 automated email campaigns that win customers and keep them coming back
#15. Growth Hackers / Twitter
Growth Hackers is an active community of growth-focused marketers. People upvote and comment on popular articles making it easy to find the best content. We love the "Growth Studies" section. This is where you'll see experts such as Morgan Brown and Sean Ellis deconstruct the growth strategies of powerhouse brands like Uber, Stripe, Spotify and HubSpot.
How Slack becaame the fastest growing B2B SaaS business (maybe) ever
How to grow a billion dollar growth engine
WhatsApp, the anti-marketing growth phenomenon
#16. Quicksprout / Twitter
Quicksprout is the creation of Neil Patel, the co-founder of KISSmetrics and Crazy Egg. He might be the most prolific blogger in the world. Inc, Forbes, Entrepreneur, you name it, Neil will show up. Not only does he pump out loads of content, it's consistently some of the best you'll read anywhere. His "ultimate guides" pack more value than a lot of the paid resources floating around online. His insights have had a huge impact on the content strategy we execute here at JitBit. A top 3 on this list!
#17. Andrew Chen / Twitter
Andrew Chen is involved with some of the most successful startups on the planet. He has written over 650 essays which have been featured and quoted in the New York Times, Fortune, Wired and WSJ. He regularly writes in-depth essays on a range of topics from mobile product design to fundraising to user growth. Read every word!
This is the Product Death Cycle. Why it happens, and how to break out of it
The most common mistake when forecasting growth for new products (and how to fix it)
Why we should aim to build a forever company, not just a unicorn
#18. Work Awesome / Twitter
The blog gets over 500,000 monthly pageviews and covers life hacks and tips on how to be more productive at work and in life. Valuable lessons for any entrepreneur.
How to be consistent and get stuff done
9 tips to do more every day
4 keys to lasting productivity
#19. Digital Marketer / Twitter
There are a lot of great blogs in the online marketing space, but Digital Marketer is a cut above most. Why? They put (a lot) of money where their mouth is. Over the last 36 months Ryan Deiss and his team have invested over $15,000,000 on marketing tests, sent tens of millions of unique visitors to their various online web properties and delivered one billion emails generating over one hundred million dollars in revenue. And, they leave no stone unturned, sharing everything they've learned with over 500,000 other subscribers on the DM blog. A double must-read!
Customer value optimization: How to build an unstoppable business
How to build a profitable membership website
Traffic temperature: How to build real relationships with automated campaigns
#20. 500 Startups / Twitter
500 Startups is a leading global venture capital seed fund and startup accelerator. It manages over $200M in assets and invests in 1300+ technology start-ups. Needless to say, these guys know what they are talking about.
One user acquisition hack that took us from 150K users to 2M in 170 countries in 5 months
14 marketplace mistakes that are killing your startup
Zero to a million run rate: A story of growth and hustle
#21. Joel.is / Twitter
Joel Gascoigne is the co-founder and CEO at Buffer, one of the world's most popular social sharing apps. His blog has over 100 articles providing a transparent look at everything he has learned about startups, life and happiness throughout his journey with Buffer.
3 reasons you shouldn't outsource your startup and what to do instead
11 cities in 3 months: The highs and lows of the digital nomad lifestyle
#22. Copyblogger / Twitter
Google anything related to copywriting and this website will show up. Brian Clark and the team at Copyblogger continually produce some of the most actionable and thought-provoking content that will have you producing more and engaging and higher converting copy in short time. Their guides are a must-read.
13 Simple Questions to Help You Draft a Winning Content Strategy [Free Worksheet]
How to Write Email Subject Lines that Make People Stop, Click, and Read
The best way to create hit content in record time
#23. SaaS Metrics / Twitter
The name says it all. This blog highlights and explains each of the metrics every SaaS-based business needs to monitor in order to build a successful subscription based model.
The right SaaS metrics for each stage of your company
Effective tactics to reduce SaaS churn
Understanding the difference between customer churn and revenue churn
#24. WP Curve / Twitter
Dan Norris and Alex McClafferty founded WP Curve, which is now one of the world's fastest growing WordPress support companies. The WP Curve blog holds nothing back. From crowdsourced expert opinion to real case studies, this content will have your mind buzzing with possibilities. Check it out today!
13 startup founders share what keeps them awake at night
8 entrepreneurs reveal the 1 critical skill they focused on to grow their business
When should you kill a product? 18 founders weigh in
#25. Startup Blog / Twitter
This blog has it all. Learn how to pitch anything, gain insights from people like Bill Gates and learn how to run a tight entrepreneurial ship.
The best single lesson Bill Gates gave every startup product manager
The ultimate technique to pitch anything
Something I told every staff member I ever had, and you should too
#26. Wider Funnel / Twitter
Chris Goward started Wider Funnel - a conversion optimization agency - in 2007, quickly netting high calibre clients like SAP and Google. The blog is packed with actionable insights from real-world optimization experiments. Plenty to be learned here.
Checkout funnel: Is the shortest path always best?
8 key conversion strategies to ensure you actually test what matters
2 ways to use heatmaps to light a fire under your website tests
#27. Chaotic Flow / Twitter
Joel York shares what he has learned about SaaS sales, models and metrics from 20+ years making and marketing B2B software for a range of companies and products including SaaS, enterprise and desktop across a number of industry ranging from financial, security, supply chain and business intelligence.
How to avoid poor SaaS customer alignment
Aligning SaaS customer acquisition
How to find SaaS product/ market fit
#28. OpenView Labs / Twitter
Another personal favorite of ours. OpenView Labs is run by a collective group of industry experts lending insights into product development, customer success, sales, marketing, finance and operations, security, exit strategies and more.
3 SaaS sales tips that go against everything you were taught
How to motivate your sales team
Debunking the myth that 67% of buyers are through the buying process before engaging sales people
#29. OkDork / Twitter
Noah Kagan is the marketing mind behind Mint, early employee of Facebook and co-founder of Appsumo and Sumome. He built, validated and sold over $1,000 in beef jerky in 24 hours. His quant-based marketing approach should be learned by every startup.
The secret to effective marketing: Quant-based marketing
How to grow your blog to 100,000 visitors in less than a year
Startup lessons: How I grew a waiting list of 20,000+ at Mint
#30. KISSmetrics / Twitter
KISSmetrics was founded by Neil Patel and Hiten Shah and is a shining example of content marketing done right. Not to mention they regularly churn out world-class data-driven SEO and conversion optimization content.
How to create content that drives organic traffic
How to use the psychology of color to increase website conversions
The ultimate guide to copywriting
#31. KopywritingKourse / Twitter
There is a reason Neville Medhora charges over $600/hr to write copy. His words sell. And he teaches you how to do the same through a range of hilarious blog posts and easy-to-follow video tutorials. If nothing else, sign up for his KopyWriting Kourse. It'll pay dividends for your business.
How to become a copywriter (with no experience)
Copywriting exercise: Best ways to get better at copywriting
Copywriting headlines that sell
#32. For Entrepreneurs / Twitter
There is a reaons Forbes just named For Entrepreneurs the #2 website for entrepreneurs. The site was founded by David Skok, a serial-entrepreneur turned VC who has founded four companies, including Skok Systems, Corporate Software Europe, Watermark Software, and SilverStream Software, three of which went public. You will learn a lot here.
SaaS metrics 2.0: A guide to measuring and improving what matters
Accelerate your startup: Tuning the engine
#33. Intercom / Twitter
Everything from product strategy, design, customer success and business success stories.
The only competitor that matters
How we hire engineers, Part 1: The Screener
One-size onboarding does not fit all
#34. Sales Hacker / Twitter
Sales are the lifeblood of any startup. This blog shares proven B2B sales strategies from some of the world's leading experts.
7 ways to see your social selling ROI
How to triple your sales qualified meetings
7 sales email secrets that drive sales forward
#35. Kabbage / Twitter
This blog is a hidden gem for any small business owner. It will teach you everything you need to know to grow, manage, innovate and fund a small business of any type.
The how-to guide for leveraging debt for your business
Why small business loans can be better than raising venture capital
7 strategies for turning unpaid client bills into cash
#36. Moz / Twitter
Founded by the Wizard of Moz himself, Rand Fishkin, this blog is the #1 online resource for actionable tips, tricks, and advice for improving websites and doing better search, social, content, and brand marketing. Don't miss Rand's Whiteboard Fridays!
Keyword research for the modern customer journey
Local SEO advanced competitive analysis
How to get content into the hands of influencers who can amplify it
#37. Unbounce / Twitter
Oli Gardner and the team at Unbounce run a full-steam content marketing ship. This blog posts daily articles loaded with actionable conversion and landing page optimization advice. Look for the posts where Oli tears apart customer landing pages - hilarious and insightful at the same time! Oli is a badass photographer too.
3 Google Analytics reports to help find blog posts your readers will love
How to write the highest converting AdWords ads, ever
The most entertaining guide to landing page optimization
#38. Startup Professionals / Twitter
This blog was started by Martin Zwilling, a well respected startup advisor. His tips range from productivity hacks, customer success advice through to proven strategies to bootstrap your startup.
6 startup strategies that turn off most investors
8 types of investors that entrepreneurs need to avoid
8 battle strategies every startup business needs
#39. Smart Passive Income / Twitter
Pat Flynn is a self-proclaimed crash test dummy. He conceptualizes, implements and tests a range of growth and online marketing strategies to see what works best, and then reports the findings back to you. One of the most transparent blogs you'll find anywhere online.
From course concept to $141,659 in sales in 6 months
How to train your subscribers to open your emails every time you send
How to make your most popular posts work hard for you
#40. Freshbooks / Twitter
Not just accounting. Ge the latest scoop on how to start and grow your business, tax tips, freelancing & more.
9 ways to improve your focus when you work from home
How to handle scope creep - 5 scripts you can use now
#41. Clarity / Twitter
Raw, no-fluff game-changing advice from entrepreneurs who have been there before.
Insanity: The secret of entrepreneurship
You are the average of these 5 people
Best collaboration tools for working with remote teams
#42. Crazy Egg / Twitter
Another Shah-Patel masterpiece that produces actionable marketing advice for startups of any size.
45-point CRO checklist
16 pricing page tips
39 ways to kill conversion-blockers and boost sales
#43. Mixergy / Twitter
Save the best for last? Possibly. Mixergy was started by Andrew Warner, who in his 20s started an internet business with his brother that generated over $30M/ year in sales. He interviews successful startup owners and gets them to tell their stories and reveal solutions to problems that often cripple many founders.
How Tim Fargo grew a company from zero revenue to $20M from a home office
How the guy who challenged Mark Cuban built a $10M niche clothing company
Paul Graham's 5 steps to building a great software company
There you have it - 43 of the best startup blogs on the planet.
Add each one to your RSS feed and set aside a little time each week to read over them. You'll not only learn new ways to grow your business, but also a become a better entrepreneur.
Did we miss any startup blogs? If you know of other great resources please let us know in the comments below and we'll consider adding them to the list.
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