How Much Money Can You Make Selling Online Courses?7 minute read
In recent years, online learning has been rapidly growing, with more and more creators seeking a flexible way to share their knowledge online and monetize their passions. But is selling online courses profitable?
Studies show that by 2030, the online learning market is expected to reach $645 Billion.
In today's article, we will cover how much creators can earn by building and selling online courses and how to build profitable online courses.
We created an earnings calculator to help you experiment with pricing ideas for your online course or membership site and calculate potential earnings.Use the Earnings Calculator
How Much Money Can You Make Selling Online Courses?
The amount of money you can make selling online courses depends on a number of factors, including the demand for your course, the price you set for your course, the marketing and promotion strategies you use, the number of students who enroll in your course, and more.
Some successful online course creators earn tens of thousands of dollars per month, while others starting out may earn only a few hundred dollars.
How much money online course creators make is also based on how a course fits into their business.
From our experience, US creators who have a side hustle selling courses might make $5000-$25000/year, while creators who sell courses as a part of their business but it is not their sole focus generally earn $40,000-$120,000. Lastly, creators whose main business is the online course itself might earn anywhere from $40-$50k, all the way up to millions of dollars per year.
It is important to keep in mind that the amount of money you can earn selling online courses is not a guarantee, and may vary greatly depending on your niche, audience, and marketing efforts.
We believe that money is a byproduct of the value you create in the world. So as a course creator, if you begin from the standpoint of figuring out how you can deliver the most value with your course, you'll be setting yourself up for success and increasing your earning potential down the road.
It is also important to note that creating an online course requires time and effort, and may not be suitable for everyone. Before embarking on this venture, it is important to carefully consider your goals and the resources you have available.
How to Maximize Online Course Earnings
There are many factors to consider that can impact how much money you make selling online courses. Let's see how to maximize your online course creation earnings by taking into account these factors:
Set the Right Price for Your Online Course
We wrote a whole guide about pricing an online course, including an earnings calculator you can use: Ultimate Guide to Pricing Your Online Course (With Earnings Calculator)
Setting the right price for your online course is crucial to its success, as it affects not only your earning potential but also both the demand for your course and the perceived value of your content.
When determining your course price, you should mainly consider the impact that your course has on its future students.
What is the result of your course, and what transformation will students get after completing your program?
Your target audience is also a key consideration when setting your course price. For example, courses aimed at professionals or those with specific career goals will typically have higher prices compared to courses aimed at hobbyists or those looking for general knowledge.
It's helpful to research your competition and see what they are charging for similar courses. You want to make sure your price is competitive, but not so low that it undermines the value of your course (remember that unlike selling a generic widget or physical product which might be sold by many businesses, your course is a unique product different from your competition, and as such, it doesn't have to be priced the same as others in your space).
Another thing to consider when setting the right price for your online course is the method in which you deliver your course, and what tools and resources are available to your students. For example, self-paced online courses will typically have a lower price than live, interactive courses with a one-on-one assistance from the creator.
Determining the right price for your online course requires careful consideration of various factors such as content quality, ideal audience, competition, delivery method, and value proposition.
It also involves conducting market research and implementing pricing strategies to maximize profits. With the right approach, you can find the right balance between providing value to your students and earning a fair income for your efforts.
Conduct Market Research
Once you have considered the above factors, it's important to conduct market research to get a better understanding of what price point your ideal audience is willing to pay.
You can gather this information by surveying your audience, analyzing competitors' prices (look at the prices of similar courses offered by your competitors and see what seems to be working well), or testing different price points.
More on conducting market research: Why You Should Do Market Research Before Starting an Online Course Business + How to Do it
Plan Your Marketing Expenses & Strategy
In order to be successful in selling online courses, you need to have a solid plan for promoting and marketing it to potential students.
A well-crafted marketing plan will help you reach your audience, create interest in your course, and drive enrollment.
There are so many different ways to promote an online course, and we talk about it more in-depth in this article from our blog: A Complete Guide on How to Promote Your Online Course and Boost Sales
Our advice to online course creators who want to build a loyal audience is to focus on organic marketing.
Selling online courses with organic marketing refers to marketing efforts that are focused on building long-term relationships with your audience, as opposed to paid marketing efforts that may provide quick results but can be more expensive and less sustainable over time.
Learn more about content creation: Grow Your Business With Content Creation and Build an Audience Around Your Online Course
Social media is also a powerful tool for promoting your online course. Choose platforms where you know that your ideal audience is active and create content that speaks to their needs and interests.
Share updates about your course, provide sneak peeks of the content, and engage with your followers to build excitement.
Another must-have marketing strategy for course creators is email marketing.
Email marketing is a direct and personal way to reach potential students and promote your course. Build an email list of interested individuals and send them regular updates about your course, including new content, promotions, and special offers.
Create a monthly or weekly newsletter to keep your subscribers informed about your course and related topics, and use automated email campaigns to welcome new subscribers, follow up with potential students, and provide valuable information about your course.
Related articles on selling courses online with email marketing:
- Guide to Email Marketing to Promote and Sell an Online Course
- 7 Emails You Need to Send to Promote Your Online Course
- Proven List-Building Strategies for Online Course Creators to Grow Your Email List
To maximize your online courses marketing efforts and earnings, you can also leverage influencer marketing and partnerships. Influencer marketing can be a great way to reach new audiences and promote your course. Look for influencers or organizations that align with your target audience and values, and work with them to promote your course through shared content, joint webinars, or other collaborations.
Affiliate marketing can be a great way to increase your earnings by partnering with other businesses or individuals to promote your course. Offer affiliates a commission for each sale they generate, and encourage them to promote your course to their audience.
Learn more about this: A Complete Guide on How to Launch an Affiliate Program to Promote Your Online Course
In conclusion, promotion and marketing are essential components of selling online courses. Utilize a variety of marketing channels, including creating organic content, social media, email marketing, influencer marketing, and partnerships, to reach your target audience and create interest in your course.
With a well-crafted marketing plan and a consistent effort, you can drive enrollment and maximize your earnings from your online course.
Keep Improving Your Online Course
To maximize your earnings, it is important to continuously improve your online course and provide value to your students.
Regularly update your online courses content to reflect current trends, best practices, and feedback from your students. Keep your course fresh and relevant to ensure that it remains in demand.
Upsell and Cross-Sell Between Courses and Products
Once a student enrolls in your online courses, there are opportunities to increase your earnings through upselling and cross-selling.
Upselling means offering students additional online courses, resources, tools, or services that complement your course and provide additional value. For example, you could offer one-on-one coaching sessions or a premium version of your course that includes extra content and resources.
Cross-selling means promoting related courses or products to your students. For example, if you have an online course on photography, you could cross-sell a course on photo editing software.
Related article: 5 Ways to Up-Sell and Cross-Sell in Your Online Course
Build an Online Community Around Your Course
Creating a community within for your online courses can boost engagement and motivation among learners and incorporate social learning into your program. A community serves as a platform where learners can exchange their opinions and insights, seek clarification, and offer feedback to each other.
Building a community around your course can not only provide value to your students, but it can also increase your earnings. Encourage students to engage with each other and with you, and offer opportunities for them to connect and network.
On Heights Platform, the online community is integrated into your program, providing seamless access for your course students to participate in the community as they progress through the course.
Learn more about building and growing an online community:
- Why You Should Build an Online Community of Engaged Customers and How to Do it
- How to Choose the Right Online Community Platform For Your Knowledge Business
- 7 Steps to Revive Your Online Community and Increase Engagement
Build Extra Leveraged Revenue Streams
There are various ways to monetize your course content beyond just selling the course itself.
Part of the beauty of online courses as a business model comes from their ability to help you generate leveraged income. Leveraged income means that the time and effort you put into your business can give you exponential results and recurring revenue down the road. With leveraged income, the work you put in once generates recurring profits in the future that aren't tied 1:1 to the time you spent.
To generate leveraged income, you could start selling extra materials and resources, for example offering additional resources, such as ebooks, templates, or workbooks, for sale to your students.
There is no way to know for sure how much money you'll make as a course creator. As you are starting a business, the earning potential is very high, however, it is not guaranteed.
By applying what we covered in the article, you can set yourself up for success. If you provide high value to your students, you will be able to attract more customers and in turn, increase your income.
Continuously improve your course, offer additional resources and services, utilize affiliate marketing, build a community around your course, and monetize your content to increase your online course revenue.
With a focus on providing value to your students and continuously improving your course, you can ensure that your online course business remains in demand and generates a steady stream of income.
If you are looking for a platform to create online courses, start your Heights Platform free account today!Create Your Online Course Today