Do you want to learn how to build an online course to sell on your blog or website? You are on the right page!
Nowadays, online courses are becoming more popular than ever.
Whether you are a coach, content creator, or blogger, it can be both profitable and rewarding if you take your knowledge and turn it into something that others can learn from.
In this article, I will take you through the steps needed to create your own online course.
But before we begin, let’s take a look at what it actually is.
What is an Online Course?
An online course, or an e-course, is simply a course or a learning program that is only available online and designed to teach a skill on a variety of subjects. The subject can range from hobby interests to traditional academic studies to business subjects.
Online courses can either be a free or paid version.
Here is an example of a free online course:
Here are some examples of a paid online course:
Online courses are normally prerecorded but they can include live classes, projects or homework assignments, mastermind groups, and other components.
They can consist of videos, audio lessons, written content, or a combination of different formats.
Some online courses offer workbooks, templates, coaching, or some other type of hands-on learning.
Creating an online course may seem daunting, but depending on your subject and with patience and determination, you will learn how to build an online course in no time!
How to Build an Online Course in Seven Days
STEP 1: Choose your topic
Time: 30 minutes to 1 hour
The first step to building an online course is to quickly decide on a topic.
To do this, ask yourself these questions:
- What experiences do you have that others may want to learn about?
- Which subjects get you excited enough to teach?
Pick a topic you are comfortable enough with and have plenty of information you can share.
Also, it’s best if you have a lot of experience in the area so that it will take less time for you to conduct research.
STEP 2: Identify your audience
Time: 30 minutes
Who do you want to reach with your online course?
Obviously, you can’t cater to everyone so you have to be specific.
Is the course for beginners or advanced learners? Do they need to have previous experience or knowledge of the topic?
If you have more time to spare, you can check out the online community (such as Facebook groups) and forums to also see whether there is any need or interest in the e-course you are planning to build.
STEP 3: Create an outline of your lessons
Time: 1 to 2 hours
Once you know who your audience is, it’s time to get a piece of paper and pen and write down everything you might want to cover in your online course.
It can just be a rough idea, or it can be as detailed as you want. Use a general bulleted list for your points and questions.
Don’t worry about the title and sequence just yet at this stage.
The goal here is to get all the information out of your head and into the paper.
Then, once you have the general outline, that’s when you can arrange the sequence.
Go back and start putting the points into the most logical order for your students.
Add to them, re-order them, or delete them if you think they don’t fit.
How To Build An Online Course – Pro Tip: Think of it as if you are building your own house. What would be the foundation they need to learn? What do you need next? How can you make it more complete and valuable to those who will be a part of it?
Remember, you might want to keep this short and simple if you want to finish building your online course within a week.
STEP 4: Decide on the medium
Time: 1 hour
Online courses can be taught in different mediums: video, written content, or audio.
I recommend you choose a combination of formats. For example, if it’s a video course you choose to create, add downloadable checklists and workbooks so your students can follow them easily.
Once you’ve chosen your medium, then it’s time to match your content with it.
Pick which parts you want to make into a video or audio then come up with the supporting formats.
Let’s say your course is about photography, you can make a video on getting started with photography, then you can add a checklist of the things they need to get started such as equipment.
Don’t worry about creating the content at this stage as we are still in the planning process.
STEP 5: Pick your delivery format and platform
Time: 2 hours
Now it’s time to think about how you are going to deliver your online course to your students.
Is it a video course? You can host video files on a free service like Youtube or a paid service like Wistia.
Does your course contain audio? Then check out SoundCloud.
Are you doing written content? Then you can upload your files to a cloud service like Amazon S3.
Aside from the format, you also have to think about the platform where students can access your online course. Some of the most popular ones are Podia and Teachable.
You may even want to consider offering your eCourse through a membership site or email such as this Pinterest email course.
STEP 6: Think about the pricing
Time: 1 hour
This is the part where you determine the price you will be offering your online course for.
This will depend on your target audience (financial situation considered), how valuable your course content is, and other similar courses being offered by your competitors.
STEP 7: Create your content
Time: 1 – 3 days
Go back to the outline you have created and then start creating content for each lesson.
It’s always best to write the content yourself, especially if you have extensive experience and knowledge on the topic.
But if you want to finish building your online course within a week, then you might want to consider doing the following:
- Hire a freelance writer
- Repurpose content you’ve already created
- Use PLR (Private Label Rights) content but make sure to alter it to suit your voice and branding
Then aside from the main content, don’t forget to:
- Create the script for your slide presentations
- Create the slides
- Add images
- Write the script for your videos and record them (if applicable)
- Include any extras like worksheets or other handouts
STEP 8: Style your course
Time: 1 – 2 hours
Once you created your content, it’s time to think about the design.
Add your logo. Change the colors. Apply your branding.
Do what it takes to make your online course look organized, professional, and engaging for your readers.
STEP 9: Create your sales page
Time: 5 hours
The purpose of having a sales page is simple… it is where your students go to sign up for your online course.
Here are some tips for creating your sales page:
- Make sure it addresses their most common problems and pain points
- Answer their anticipated questions
- Keep them interested in your solution
- Assure your potential students that you will help them achieve their goals by offering additional information and/or answering the questions they may have about the course
Applying the above tips will not only help you make sales but will also help your audience build their confidence and trust in you as an expert.
Recommended learning resource: The Ultimate Guide to Creating Evergreen Sales Funnels
STEP 10: Upload and go live
Before you go live, make sure to organize, package, and upload everything to your chosen platform. Make sure it is also connected to your payment processor and test everything multiple times to ensure everything works properly.
STEP 11: Begin marketing your online course
You want to begin marketing your online course as soon as you can even with such a short creation time.
You can do this by:
- Creating a landing page on your blog that explains what your course is about with an email capture
- Post on social media
- Add the link in your blog posts
- Send an email to your list concerning the upcoming launch of your course
Now that you’ve seen the overall view of how to build an online course, let’s take a look at some tips you can apply.
Top Tips For How To Build An Online Course
1. When considering topics for your online course, start by thinking about the outcome.
What outcome do you want your students to achieve? What knowledge will they have obtained by the end of your course? Which skills will they be able to demonstrate? What changes in their feelings and behaviors will they have?
2. Always validate your online course idea before creating it.
Save yourself from creating a course that nobody wants.
3. Make your online course social.
Give your students a chance to collaborate with you and other students by creating a private discussion group.
Many course creators have a Facebook group where they engage with their students.
4. Know your goal.
What is your goal for the online course? Is it to become your main source of income? Is it to help build your email list? A side hustle, perhaps?
Whichever it may be, knowing the goal will help you evaluate the course worth, as well as the pricing.
5. Ask for feedback.
Once the first batch of students have completed your online course, make sure to get some feedback and suggestions on how to make it a better course.
You can use these to improve your course content, delivery methods, or whatever your students need.
What To Do Next
It may seem impossible to create an ecourse in seven days or less. But as you can see, it can certainly be done.
Now that you know the steps as well as some tips for course creation, you can start building your own!
Also, feel free to drop a comment below if you have any questions on how to build an online course. I’m always happy to help. 😊