Juggling between home and office feels like a never-ending hamster wheel for parents with careers, and especially if very small kids are involved.
It’s a never-ending vicious cycle that only brings you never-ending stress, pain, and frustration.
What if there was a way for parents to pursue their careers while spending their entire time at home looking out for their kids?
Well, here is at least one way that I know: you can consider making a full-time income by selling courses online.
I’ve been selling online courses since 2016 and have been able to earn enough to leave my well-paying full-time job as a software engineer.
In this post, I will share my step-by-step process of creating online courses that have helped me generate $1615000 in revenue.
I know this works, because I’ve been doing it for years now. I work from home as a course creator (I teach programming), and I have no daily commute between home and office.
I take my kids to school which is 5 minutes walking from my place, and I pick them up every day relatively early.
If my kids are sick, they stay at home with me, I don’t need to scramble trying to find at the last minute an expensive babysitter.
Based on my experience, once you have set up your course business, you will have more than enough time to spend with your kids and family.
The online course industry is booming, and launching your online course business is easier than ever.
A picture is worth a thousand words, so here is what I will be covering in this post:
So, without further ado, let’s get straight into the course creation process.
STEP #1: Choose the Right Course Topic
The first step to selling successful online courses is the most important: research. Only some industries will help you earn a full-time living.
Some are highly successful niches, and some don’t sell at all, and you need to pick the right one.
So first, research and find an excellent topic to sell courses. It is much easier to sell in a profitable niche than to struggle in an industry nobody cares about.
The best ways to find a profitable course niche and ideas are Google search, keyword research, and online communities.
People share their concerns in online communities. I just keep an eye on these platforms, like reddit, twitter, Facebook Groups and even Quora.
I’ve had my best results when I managed to confirm my course ideas with online communities, and crossed that with keyword research.
STEP #2: Choose your Unique Value Proposition
Once you’ve picked a profitable online course idea, the second thing to do is establish what makes you unique in this space.
There are many course creators in your industry and probably many courses on the same topic.
So, how will you claim that your course is better than theirs? And is it better for whom, for which type of student? Beginners, advanced students?
Your unique value proposition will help you differentiate clearly from the competition.
There are many ways to come up with a UVP; I like this simple formula that always seems to work for me:
“After completing this course, you will be able to…” + Verb + What students will do + How they will do it.”
Want to see it in action? Suppose I teach HTML and CSS to my students, then my UVP would be:
“After completing this course, you will be able to build a complete website with HTML and CSS from A to Z.”
STEP #3: Validate your Course Idea
After you’ve figured out a profitable and unique online course idea, it’s a good time to validate it and see if it’s economically viable.
You want to be extra sure that you get the results for the effort and time you put in.
The best way to validate an idea is to pre-sell it. Quickly sell your idea to your social media audience and see if anyone is willing to invest in it.
Even if you get only a few sales, it’s a very good sign to keep going, and it’s also an awesome way to get early feedback on the course, and get a few beta testers that will watch the course as you create it, and provide feedback on it.
STEP #4: Create a Course Outline
So far, you’ve done everything to pick a course idea that will be profitable. Now all that’s needed is to start working on building a sellable course.
This step is my pro tip and will save you time and frustration. Always create an outline of your course before starting recording videos. Your outline will help you create a better course than others.
Your goal should be to develop a better outline than your competitors. To do that, go through the reviews of existing courses and find out what’s missing.
What they have missed is an opportunity for you. Use it to create an extremely detailed outline that includes a course overview and individual lesson descriptions.
STEP #5: Brand your Online School
A brand that sticks around is more likely to be remembered. If you want to stay in the online course business for long, you should give a generous amount of time to finalizing a brand.
Pick a branding for your online course business before launching your first course so you can use it consistently across all courses and social media platforms.
- Choose two main colors that evoke emotions: one primary and one accent color.
- Pick a branded domain name that is related to what you teach.
STEP #6: Record and Edit your Videos
After you’ve decided on your branding, the next logical step is to record your courses.
Nothing complicated. You’ve already detailed each lesson in your outline. Go ahead and record videos for each class. The best part is that you get many chances to record lessons. If a piece feels terrible, you can re-record it.
Two things to keep in mind:
- To record high-quality videos, you need more than your computer webcam. I recommend investing in a good camera.
- Your courses must be audible, so find a good microphone that captures your audio well.
STEP #7: Pick the Perfect Online Course Hosting Platform
Recorded everything? Have all your course material ready? Now you need an online course hosting platform to upload this content.
While picking a course hosting platform, look for these things:
- A beginner-friendly platform that makes uploading a course easy
- A reliable platform that runs smoothly when many students view a course together.
- A user-friendly platform that makes accessing a course easy for students.
Once you find such a platform, upload your course following the outline.
STEP #8: Craft a High-Converting Sales Page
After uploading your course on an online course platform, you need a landing page to display the qualities of your online course.
The online course platform should provide you with a landing page template. But you need to put in extra effort to sell your course.
That’s why pay attention to coming up with a landing page that includes these things:
- A compelling thumbnail image
- Irresistible course headline
- Course core benefits
- Coupon codes, if any
- FAQs to answer common questions
STEP #9: Price your Course the Right Way
Then you want to come up with a course price to sell it. You want to remember things like market rate (so you don’t charge too high or too less), your technical setup costs, and the extra revenue you want to earn.
You can choose one of the three pricing models:
- One-time pricing: Pay a one-time fee to get lifetime access.
- Membership pricing: Pay a monthly fee to keep access to courses. (Good option if you want to sell many courses)
- Bundle pricing: Pay a one-time considerable amount to get access to all courses bundled together.
STEP #10: Launch and Promote your Course
The final step (which might be the most important) is promoting your course.
Since you’ve just started, only a few people likely know about your course, let alone buy it. So what you can do is promote your course and drive people to its landing page.
All you need to do is send people to your course landing page; the rest depends on its copy. You drive people to the page and its copy will sell the course. If you keep promoting your course, you’ll be able to bring in some sales.
Over time, your courses will become famous, and you won’t have to promote them. You’ll start earning passive income without doing anything.
Conclusion: How to Make a Living at Home by Selling Online Courses?
That was my step-by-step process of creating successful online courses. I’ve used the same to launch multiple courses and build a great business.
I run my entire business from home, I make a good income, and most importantly, I’m there when my kids need me.
You can live the same life too. It might not be possible right now, but it will be in a few months if you start today.
So, now it’s your turn.
Go and start creating your online course today.
To help you get started, here’s an even more detailed guide on creating an online course. I’ll walk you through the entire process from start to finish: How To Create an Online Course
I hope you found this post helpful, and that you now understand better the concrete steps to follow to create an online course.
I want to thank Marysa for the opportunity to share this here.
Let me know in the comments if you have any questions.
OnlineCourseHost.com Founder & Online Course Creator
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