Selling Online Courses: The Complete Guide

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In the world we live in, virtual learning spaces are increasingly present. In this scenario, the sale of online courses has been gaining more and more strength. Especially during the new coronavirus pandemic, more and more people are looking to learn online.

Therefore, the sale of online courses becomes one of the main issues for those who want to invest in this segment of education. In this text, we will talk about the challenges that an entrepreneur can face in the sales process. In addition, we will tell you tips on factors that are considered crucial in the process.

First Steps of Selling Online Courses

We’ve listed what your first steps should be to be successful in selling courses online.

So, we’ve selected for you online sales strategies that you need to consider and implement if you want to succeed in your online course business.

It’s not a formula for success or anything like that, but they are fundamental points to guide your path. Come on?

Planning

To sell courses online, the first step is to invest in good planning. In fact, everything in life starts with effective planning. From the start, defining your goals and objectives is fundamental. In addition, keeping your feet on the ground and having a good strategy, support network and materials will also make a big difference in the end result. This goes for any niche.

Market research

One of the first steps to entering a new market is to understand how it works. Okay, and how do you know your way of operating? The tip is to do market research based on the segment you choose to sell your dream online course.

Market research can be done by searching for relevant information related to your customers (target audience) and their interests. In addition, the research also moves towards knowledge about your competitors and other fields of activity in the business that are important and directly impact your work.

Avatar

Avatar or persona is a representation of the ideal online course client. Thus, the idea is to define this representation to invest in marketing and dissemination techniques that capture the attention of this audience profile.

After defining who you want to reach, think about what he likes, what brand he engages with, what his routine is, what catches his attention the most and what format he likes most.

For example, if your audience is young, you will hardly be able to create a connection if you invest in older methods of learning, such as long handouts. This generation has already grown up with technology and works with great frequency on social networks. Thus, one idea would be to invest in these digital platforms and work with everyday events, which usually attract the attention of these young people

Another strategy to define the persona is to conduct extensive surveys, usually using questionnaires, in order to interview people interested in your product/service online.

With the answers, you get to know the characteristics of the profile of those who will receive the message communicated by your brand and consume your course. Therefore, you save resources and direct efforts to the right place, where it will generate good results.

Sales funnel

The sales funnel refers to the customer’s entire journey, from attraction to purchase.

The funnel is divided into three steps:

  • Top: lead is discovering the problem and needs information to help solve it.
  • Middle: closer to purchase, but still looking for different solutions in the market.
  • Fund: is very close to buying and is searching for the best cost-benefit ratio.

Therefore, your strategies must also be tailored to serve customers at each of the three stages of the sales funnel.

Training

While it sounds easy and a bed of roses, a digital business takes effort and teamwork. So, it’s no use unfolding in planning, devising accurate strategies and ways to promote the product if you’re alone in this. Call on everyone who works with you.

All employees need to be aligned with the company’s goals, campaigns, sales and social networks. Create a transparent communication policy: bring all information to general knowledge, as well as customer approach and relationship strategies.

Goals

Well, we talked about goals just now. Goals are fundamental guidelines for getting anywhere. It’s a starting point, so don’t go strategizing just because so-and-so did it, you saw it on TV, or you watched a quick video on the topic. Before, study and set tangible goals. Then, yes, create ways to achieve that.

Competition

Know what happens in someone else’s business. Keep track of rival brand actions, customer relationships, and audience reaction. Knowing how your competitor treats your dream customer makes it easier to adapt your techniques.

How to create an online course sales website?

Before even thinking about selling your online course, you need to make sure that the material you have on hand is consistent with your ideas and thoughts. Get the dynamics right and learn how to create a website for selling online courses. It is essential for everything to work out.

Platform

One of the most important and crucial steps in determining whether your business will succeed or fail is the platform you choose to create your sales website.

Therefore, it is essential that the platform is didactic and easy to use. Thus, users will have the best experience with your website.

For this, try to be always aware of the e-commerce platforms available in the market and what each one of them can offer for your business. Seek to combine the widest options available to you, with the budget you have reserved. There is no doubt that you will find something in between these two factors.

The HeroSpark is an excellent choice for someone starting out or already having an online course structured. The company offers a complete platform for hosting and selling online courses, in addition to offering tools for the dissemination and creation of landing pages.

Safety

Also, remember to raise some points that are crucial that the platform provides to analyze if it is worth choosing it.

Beforehand, the basics that a platform needs to provide is a good data security system and a good interface with the support team.

Do not accept anything less than that, these two requirements are fundamental. Also because this point is also part of what you should consider before selling online courses.

Customization

Strengthen your brand with a differentiated, unique layout, something that will be characteristic. People will catch up and, thanks to the visual identity, they’ll recognize your business right away.

Some platforms offer this customization function in a very easy and intuitive way. Others will require the hiring of a designer and a developer to ensure that everything goes as smoothly as possible.

It’s up to you to choose which of these two to choose, always checking your pocket and, of course, your market research.

Responsive Design

Another aspect that will also be a differential for your website, and which is a demand arising from the growing access to mobile devices, is the responsiveness of the websites.

In general, the responsiveness of the websites corresponds to a platform capable of adapting to any type of device, be it desktop, smartphone, tablet or computer, among others.

Responsive sites ensure a better experience for users, which is always interesting when it comes to online courses.

Payment

Another technical issue that must be seen and analyzed with great attention is related to the payment methods that will be made available to its users. It is worth noting that the main objective of any business is the monetary return it will give, that is, profit.

Therefore, make an intelligent and conscientious choice when requesting your payment methods.

The gateway system links e-commerce and payment methods, and for that reason, it is an excellent bet for websites that aim to sell online courses.

The gateway is responsible for making direct communication between the company and the banking systems.

Thus, users’ money is transferred directly to the store’s account, which greatly facilitates the process, in addition to making it more secure and reliable.

In addition, the checkout page must also be thought through with great care and attention. Very long, complex, and effort-intensive checkout processes often tend to drive away potential customers. So the tip is always: less is more.

Choose pages that require the minimum necessary for the purchase: card and CPF number.

Bureaucratic aspects

Have a person, who will assume the role of responsible for this bureaucratic part and who is able to help your users in case of any complications that may occur.

Furthermore, the focus should not only be on those customers who have already made their payments. The ones that are in the potential are also very important for the financial one. The tip is to keep a database with the data of those who showed interest in the product but did not pay.

The lead nurturing strategy (bringing the brand closer to future and current customers) will help you in this and ensure that your brand does not fall by the wayside.

How to sell a course on the internet? 

With everything planned and organized, it’s time to start putting your course online.

We have separated some investments that are worth being made, which will definitely make a difference in your virtual business, attracting more and more potential students.

Webinars

The first tip is to work with webinar broadcasts. Webinars are a great way to bring students and experts together during a course. These transmissions humanize and bring didactics to a course. They allow authorities on the subject being worked on to share their knowledge and content through a live broadcast.

If you want to know in more detail how to make a webinar, go to this text. But in short, all you need is a webcam, a microphone and a computer connected to the internet.

Afterwards, all you have to do is register on a platform, create a link and share it with your students and leads. Here are some program options to use:

  • GoToWebinar;
  • Click Meeting;
  • Webinar Jam;
  • WebEx;
  • Stream Yard.

Social networks

The next tip is to invest in social media. Social networks play a key role for educational institutions in promoting online courses, so use them very wisely. It’s on social media that your audience, and all types of audiences, will be.

So, invest in feeding your social network with relevant data, eye-catching photos, interesting videos, anything that can leave people with a taste of wanting more, and a greater interest in what is being offered.

The pages of Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and so many other social networks are fed thousands of times a day, by an unimaginable range of people. So, the ideal option is for you to find your originality in order to stand out and conquer your space.

Paid media

When we talk about social networks, we soon relate to the concept of paid traffic. Paid media has gained a lot of strength because it is able to segment the audience of a campaign, course, or any other line of service, customize and analyze data.

With Paid Media, it is practically guaranteed that the dissemination of the course will bring tangible results. The main advantages are increased visibility, segmentation and low cost for those who invest.

Sponsored links

The next tip is to invest in sponsored links. Without a doubt, you’ve come across them on the internet, whether on social media or in your search engine. They make a total difference in the end result of selling any product or service.

In search engines, sponsored links are those first results that appear when searching on any subject and, right below, they are flagged as “sponsored” or with the word “ad” besides, on the left or right side of the title.

On social networks, sponsored links usually appear flagged above the publication with a written indication “sponsored” or with a “learn more” link, which means that it is an advertisement.

E-mail marketing

Another strategy that can also be critical to the success of selling your online course is to work with email marketing to keep in close contact with leads and students.

Now, pay attention and be careful when writing these emails: use light images, attractive and challenging titles and personal and intimate language, in order to make the potential client feel familiar in advance with the format of your course and arouse interest in taking part.

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Investing in SEO content helps your business grow organically on Google. That is, instead of paying to appear in the first results, you produce relevant content to appear in the first results when your customers do a search in the search engine.