The 6 critical features to reach your goals in 2020.
What will the future hold? The online course landscape is changing rapidly. Really, really fast. As a course creator, you must respond now to make sure 2020 lays a positive foundation for your future. We looked to expert Shane Melaugh for some answers.
Whether you have a solid lineup of online courses or you are just starting out, these 6 critical features are critical to a successful 2020.
1) You are in a Growth Market
Everything suggests that online courses are a thriving market. The success of Coursera, Masterclass, Skillshare and Udacity are a good indication of the current and future potential for online courses. Plus, niche platforms serve specific markets. Huge money flows into online courses and interest in online courses is at an all-time high.
2) Buying Online Courses is Normal
Making online purchases is now the norm. Online courses experienced the same transformation. Now, learners are comfortable with both the purchase of the course and the idea of online learning.
3) Technical Course Creation is Easier than Ever
Just a few years ago, course creation was technically challenging. Now the tech aspects are easily accessible and affordable. As a course creator, there are different business model options. You can choose to publish using a platform like Skillshare of Udemy, where you’ll reach more potential learners, but they pay less per course. Or, use an all-in-one platform like Podia or Teachable or a WordPress plugin on your own website like Thrive Apprentice.
Finally, you focus on content instead of technical details.
4) More Competition means Lower Prices
So, now that creating courses is more manageable, there’s bound to be more competition and therefore lower prices. For some, anyway.
Udemy is a good example. There are some higher-priced courses on Udemy, but there are also scads of courses for about $10 apiece. Skillshare offers access to its entire course library for $9/month. Now, potential learners are comparing your course to one that’s $10 or included in their current subscription.
Internet businesses tend to consolidate towards a monopoly, like Amazon, Google, and Facebook. The online course space is shifting in this direction, too. The goal is to capture potential learners and extract as much value as possible. This shift is still in process, but it is making it difficult to make a decent living as a course creator using these platforms already.
6) The Most Critical Issue is Differentiation
As a course creator, the most critical issue is differentiation. Generic online courses all compete with each other, for very low prices.
To make a living as an online course creator, your courses must sell for a reasonable price. High-value courses sell for $100s or even $1,000s of dollars. A generic course simply does not command a high price, because there’s no reason to pay $100+ when there is what seems to be the same course for $10 somewhere else.
So, “Why your course?”
This question needs answering everywhere. Answer it in course content, SEO content, marketing materials, on sales pages, in ads, in blogs, on T-shirts… you get the idea.
Sellers of generic courses on crowded platforms do not have nearly the success as differentiated courses.
So, what does that change for your 2020 online course plan?