The best online course platforms give you the tools and audience to market your course. But uploading your learning material on these platforms isn’t enough. You also need to make efforts to promote the course and drive more sales.
With the eLearning industry expected to keep growing, you can be certain, there’s a hungry audience waiting to enroll in your digital course.
So, how can you tap into this audience and give them a reason to purchase your product?
Keep reading to discover the top 10 proven tricks you can use to get more prospects to purchase your course.
1. Choose a Course Subject That Sells
Raise your hand if you thought that money blogging is the only profitable course idea.
Here’s the deal: you can create and sell an online course in any niche. But, first, find out if people are interested in the subject because, without demand, your course probably won’t sell.
A study by CBInsights shows that 35% of startups fail because their products don’t meet the market need.
Here’s a list of perfect online course ideas that sell well:
- Finance & Cryptocurrency
- Personality development & self help
- Vocational skills
- Creative writing
- Lifestyle, fashion & beauty
These subjects are too broad. You should niche down to a specific topic in these niche subjects.
2. Use the Best Online Course Platforms
Online course platforms fall into three major categories:
- Course marketplaces
- Course creation software
- All-in-one course platforms
Let’s look at each briefly:
Marketplaces let you customize the course content and landing page. They publish your course free of charge but take a cut from the course sales.
The upside of marketplaces is that they have an existing audience, which saves you a lot of time and money for marketing.
On the other hand, course creation software provides more customization options. You can create a branded landing page, choose a suitable content format, create custom certificates, and access marketing tools. Such software may charge a monthly fee and some platforms also take a transaction fee.
The all-in-one platforms are designed for growing companies. Companies that want to sell more learning products. They let the user create the course, manage the store/website, sell the course and access analytic reports to make sound judgement. While choosing an all-in-one course platform consider your requirements, product’s features and pricing for the best selection.
There’s no one-size-fits-all platform, though. But we recommend using a platform that offers excellent customer support, valuable resources and guides, and a ready audience for your content.
More importantly, consider the best online course platforms with reasonable fees. There are all-in-one platforms that charge reasonably.
3. Set up a Sales Page
This page helps your prospects know more about the course outline, the end goal, and more.
A successful sales page should include these details:
- A headline highlighting the main benefit
- A subheading that elaborates on the benefits and offers a unique selling point
- A prospect’s problem that the course solves
- Course details, lessons, modules, quizzes, and worksheets
- A breakdown of all the course elements
- The pricing
- A money-back guarantee
You may integrate the checkout page within the sales page or link it to a separate page. Either way, make the checkout process simple.
4. Build Massive Social Proof with Video Testimonials
Social proof is an easy but powerful marketing tactic. For online courses, testimonials form a crucial part of social proof.
The internet audience prefers videos, and video traffic has been growing over the years. So, have a few customers do a testimonial video explaining how they benefited from the course. The video gives a ‘real feel’ and eliminates the doubt of ‘faking’ recommendations.
Besides, consider including a short (one to two minute) video where you talk about yourself, background, and expertise.
Here’s an unusual example from Dropbox. Instead of using a single testimonial from one happy client, they collected several stories from satisfied customers and put them into one video:
5. Price it Right
How much should my course cost?
Unsurprisingly, pricing is one of the major determinants of how much your course will generate in sales.
Here’s the thing: there’s no hard and fast rule on how to price an online course. However, the price may vary depending on the topic, audience, and expertise.
When pricing the course, consider:
- The expenses used in creating, hosting, and marketing the course
- What other instructors in your niche charge
- The target audience’s income level
You can structure payments in three primary ways:
- A single payment for lifetime access
- Monthly payments, usually lower, recurring membership charges
A payment plan where prospects can pay the course fee in multiple installments.
6. Include Bonuses
Adding bonuses increases the digital course’s perceived value.
Examples of bonuses include case studies, reports, templates, and additional lessons. You may also build relationships with experts in your niche and include their content as a bonus.
Here’s the big secret: Place a high cash value on each bonus to help you promote the course’s high added value.
Look at how this site packages their course bonuses with a bright font color on the cash value of each bonus:
Source: Food Babe
7. Integrate Upsells
Another best way to make more sales from your online course is to promote extra products when prospects purchase the course. An upsell provides an additional purchase opportunity even before the initial transaction completes.
That said, you can offer these two easy upsells alongside your first course:
- Coaching: This could be one-on-one coaching on the phone, email coaching, a monthly webinar, or even a physical meet-up.
- Group training: You can provide live group training that includes more in-depth teaching plus discussion (Q&A) topics.
8. Create a Website and Optimize It
you are non-techy, creating a good-looking website can’t be complicated, as there are some popular platforms today, giving you this opportunity. But we can recommend setting up a website on the most powerful and popular CMS WordPress because it is easy to customize with plugins and themes.
It’s also SEO-friendly, safe and secure, and compatible with different media types.
The best part is WordPress page builders make setting up a WordPress website hassle-free. Page builders like Elementor, Divi, and others have a drag and drop capability, which makes them responsive, fast, and simple to edit.
On top of that, start a blog and install plugins like Woocommerce to sell the online course and improve SEO. The plugin allows you to set up subscriptions through memberships.
9. Entice Prospects with a Lead Magnet
Your website’s marketing strategy will attract many prospects, but it takes a while for people to get comfortable enough and trust you to enroll in the course.
That’s why you may need to give them something of value for free. The free information is a lead magnet and could be an eBook, checklist, blueprint, case study, cheatsheet, template, video tutorial, and more. Prospects will need to provide their emails to access the free report.
You can also offer a part of the course for free and disable the rest of the modules. This entices them to purchase the course so they can access all the content.
Here’s an example (cheatsheet):
Source: Smart Business Revolution
10. Send a Killer Email Series
This action results from the previous step; after collecting emails from your prospects, the next step is to build an email list and start marketing your course.
Why use emails? You ask. It's still the most effective way of communication.
Email marketing works well in the education and training industry where the average open and click rates are 23.42% and 2.90% respectively. That’s well above the average open rate for all industries of 21.33% and click rate of 2.62%.
It’s best to start emailing the prospects in the initial stages of the buyer’s journey when they are looking for a solution to a problem.
And don’t send general emails, as people prefer customized emails tailored to their needs. Here’s a tested email structure to get you results:
- First email: Make it purely educational, and you may not even mention the course at this stage
- Second email: More valuable and actionable advice
- Third email: Transition from the education to the intro pitch. Capture details on what the digital course offers, how it can help you, and what you’ll get after learning it.
- Fourth email: Sales pitch and FAQs
- Fifth email: Case study and a powerful CTA
What’s more, the best online course platforms have email marketing integration to help you reach out to your prospects easily.
As you can see, you can use multiple tricks to sell your course. Most of the above tips apply to courses across all niches. Start using these tactics for your course to see a growth in sales. Additionally, keep checking learning analytics to find ways to improve the course and boost sales.
Nick Huss is a digital entrepreneur and business enthusiast who is constantly seeking and testing new ways of doing business better. When not doing business Nick plays soccer, travels the World, and writes books.