9 min. reading

How to Create a Successful Online Course in 5 Easy Steps?

An online course is the perfect way to share your experience and increase your budget. How do you create a successful course?

How to Create a Successful Online Course in 5 Easy Steps?
Source: Depositphotos

As well as choosing the right topic, it is important to have a strategy and a plan. Who is your target audience? Is there interest in your chosen subject? How can you sell your course? How can you improve it and take it to the next level? If you would like to know more, read this article now.

Don’t hesitate to create your own online course

You don’t usually need a certificate, licence or degree to create an online course. But it depends on your field. Most online courses are created by people who have gained their knowledge through informal learning and self-education. Of course, if you want to add a “stamp” of expertise to your course, for example with a certificate or other document, this can be an advantage for you.

Before you start working on your online course, answer the following questions:

  • Do I have knowledge that could be useful to others?
  • Can I offer people something they might want to try?
  • Are there other people interested in this subject?
  • Do I have a skill that most people don’t have?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, start creating your online course. You probably have something to offer the world.

1. A topic that not only interests you, but also your audience

Choose a course topic that you know or enjoy. Are you an English teacher or a programmer? Create an online English or programming course.

At the same time, remember to make the topic interesting for your audience. You need to feel that your chosen topic will resonate with them. This is the only way you can make it interesting enough to keep people interested. If you choose a topic that doesn’t “grab” your attention, it will show in the overall result. Also, you’ll probably get bored with it quickly.

Share your know-how on a topic that suits you

Think about your experience, skills and talents. Do you like to cook? Start an online cooking class. You don’t have to be an expert in the subject you choose for your online course. The important thing is that you succeed at it. After all, the most successful subjects are usually those that are considered a hobby.

Remember, if you like the topic, are good at it, have experience in it, and it also fulfils a need for someone else, you are in the best position to monetise your expertise;

Talk about what’s trending

Your online course doesn’t have to be about your hobby. You can choose a topic that is resonating in society. Again, you need to be knowledgeable in the field and, most importantly, follow the trends. Find out what people are interested in, what they are looking for and what they are missing. Share your insights with them.

This focus can’t be achieved without extensive research into resources related to the topic. You need to dig deep, understand it and be able to communicate it, while having your own opinion or experience.

Do you want to succeed? Here is what you need to know

Whatever topic you choose, your personal experiences and stories will be an asset to the course. Your knowledge and skills in the field are also important. Presenting yourself as an expert will add credibility to the course.

To make your course attractive, it is definitely worth coming up with a catchy title. The title should make it as clear as possible who the course is for and what they will learn. The more concise the title, the more likely it is that people who are interested in the topic will sign up for the course.

2. Do you offer a course?

When you choose a topic for an online course, check that there is interest in it. Nothing will disappoint you more than finding out that you’ve spent hours preparing a course that no one will take.

Before you start, do some market research to see if there is a demand for your subject. Ask yourself 3 basic questions and find out the answers:

  • Is your topic in demand? Are people interested in it? – Use various tools to find out how popular and in demand your topic is, explore social media and find out what people are doing most related to your topic.
  • Can your online course fill a gap in the market? – Research the competition in your field. What have people been able to learn and what can you offer them?
  • Will people be willing to pay for your course? – Find out if the solution to the problem you offer in your course is attractive enough for people to pay for it. Also, try some form of pre-selling your course to see if it is worth creating a course at all. Don’t forget to look at the competition. If people are willing to pay them, chances are they’ll pay you.

Don’t underestimate the competition

Before you launch your fantastic online course into the online world, find out what the competition is doing. Find out what they’re offering customers, what customers value and what they’re missing, the format and structure of the course or the target audience they’re targeting. Don’t hang your head if you find that your industry is highly competitive.

Try to find an area that others in the industry don’t cover. This will be your ‘hook’ for potential students. Make this area the focus of your course. You’ll definitely be able to sell training that gives people something extra, rather than a course that’s the same as dozens or hundreds of others.

3. Who is your target audience?

Knowing your target audience is the key to your success. You have to be aware who is your group of people who could buy your online course.

If you know who you’re preparing your course for, it will be much easier to prepare it. Why?

  • You will know what motivates them to buy.
  • You’ll know what problems they want to solve.

It’s important to know your audience or target group as much as you can. This knowledge will make it easier to think about not only the content, but also the format of the course, how to promote it, the target audience, the language of communication, etc…

What do you need to know about your target audience?

  • What communication channels do they use (social media, TV, radio, print)?
  • What do they do for a living?
  • What are they interested in?
  • What is their age?
  • What is their average income?
  • Why did they choose your course?
  • How much would they be prepared to pay for such a course?

4. How can you sell your online course?

If your online course will not be free, but you decide to sell it, you need to choose a sales platform that suits your needs and is easy and friendly for your customers.

The right sales platform can make selling your online courses much easier. What should a simple and effective platform for selling online courses look like?

  • It’s easy to use – not only for you, but also for your customers. It allows you to set up the processes you need to sell.
  • It doesn’t take money out of your pocket unnecessarily – you pay a reasonable amount to run it. If you don’t sell the course, you pay nothing. If you do sell, the commission is reasonable.
  • It works with other business tools – it can be linked to your bank, billing system, emailing tools, etc.
  • It has reliable customer support – if you are unsure about something, the platform has customer support to resolve your issue in the shortest possible time and in a language you understand.

5. Tell us about your project and find out how it is going

Wouldn’t it be a shame to spend hours preparing and then lose out on profits because you didn’t promote your online course enough? Don’t forget to promote your project properly. That’s why it pays to understand the marketing landscape. Marketing is what gets your product in front of your target audience.

How can you promote your course?

  • Let them know about it with an email marketing campaign.
  • Promote it on social media.
  • Make space for it on your website or blog.
  • Get the right influencers involved in your promotion.
  • Offer it in a community that brings together your target audience.

The most effective promotion is the one that matches your target audience. Think about the promotional channels that appeal to them, the type of treatment they prefer (graphics, videos, articles, stories, etc.), the language they speak, the social networks they are on, etc. If you have the budget, you can pay for advertising on Facebook or Google search, for example.

Feedback – great help

If you want to know how you are doing with your online course, what you are doing well and what your students are missing out, it is worth get some feedback. In this way you’ll be able to use the data to improve your course and take it to the next level.

You can get feedback during the course, but also after the course. As well as online questionnaires, you can also use tools to collect data from marketing campaigns, for example. These include Google Analytics, Facebook Insights and more.

Remember that a successful online course depends not only on your knowledge and skills, but also on the right subject matter, knowledge of the target audience, the necessary promotion and insights from feedback.

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