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How to Make Money Teaching Online | Earn Passive Income as A Teacher

The past couple of years have turned the world of human interaction on its head, with more and more businesses and services taking their operations online. This digital revolution has also transformed the world of education and learning, as a vast array of courses are now accessible from the comfort of your own screen.

If you’re an expert in a particular field or have a special skill that you’d love to share with the world, teaching online may be just the opportunity you’ve been looking for! Thanks to the digital age, there has never been a better time to start teaching online and monetizing your knowledge so you can work from the comfort of your own home with no upper limit to your income potential!

In this post, we’ll go through various ways that you can monetize your teaching expertise as well as the step-by-step guide to getting started on earning your first dollar. So, grab your laptop, settle in, and let’s get started on your journey to becoming a successful online educator.

Benefits of Teaching Online

teaching online

It’s projected that the worldwide e-learning industry will hit a staggering $400 billion USD by 2026. But if you need more reasons to dip your toes in this industry, take a look at the following benefits of teaching online:

Higher potential income with a global audience reach

Let’s start with the fact that teaching online is like having a global classroom without the hassle of booking flights and hotels! You can reach students from all over the world, from the comfort of your own home. With online teaching, you have the luxury of a much larger audience pool, which translates to higher potential income and lower overhead costs. This ability to reach a global audience can also be particularly beneficial for educators who specialize in niche topics or have unique expertise that may not be available locally.

Flexibility and freedom with your time

You can create and deliver lessons whenever you want, giving you the flexibility to work around your other commitments. It’s like being your own boss, but without the pesky employee evaluations. This is particularly helpful when you’re just starting out with your online teaching business and may not be able to give up the money from your regular 9-5 salary just yet.

Earn highly scalable passive income

There are so many ways to make money online with your teaching skills. If you’re going with selling pre-recorded online courses, you can earn passive income while you’re basking in the sun on the beach (or working on your next course, let’s be honest) as online courses can be sold over and over again without having to incur additional expenses. The same is also true if you’re selling teaching resources as digital products (e.g. eBooks, audiobooks, workbooks, printables, etc).

In addition, you can deliver courses or any other digital teaching materials to an unlimited number of students, which means that there is no limit to the potential growth of your online teaching business.

Lower cost than traditional teachers’ classrooms

Regardless of which ways you decide to monetize your teaching skills (online tutoring, selling online courses, etc), there is no need for physical classroom space, which can significantly reduce overhead costs. You can work from the comfort of your own home (or wherever you’d like as long as you have access to a computer and the internet). This can be particularly beneficial for independent instructors who may not have the financial resources to rent or purchase a traditional classroom space.

Rewarding experience to make a positive impact on people across the globe

Online learning gives you an opportunity to share your knowledge and expertise with students from all walks of life, regardless of their physical location. This is particularly impactful for people living in remote or underserved areas, where traditional education options may be limited.

Online learning can also be more affordable than traditional education options, which can help to reduce the financial barriers to education. This is particularly important in developing countries, where the cost of education can be a major obstacle for many people. As an educator, you can utilize online learning to empower individuals and communities to improve their lives.

Different Ways to Make Money by Teaching Online

sell online courses

Sell teacher resources online

One way to make money with teaching online is to create and sell teaching resources. This can include lesson plans, worksheets, printables, activities, and other materials that educators can use in their classrooms. By creating and selling high-quality teaching resources, you can earn a passive income while helping other teachers or educators save time and improve their teaching methods.

Read our article on How to Sell Teaching Resources for a more comprehensive guide.

Sell eBooks or audiobooks

Writing and selling ebooks or audiobooks is another great way to earn money by teaching online. In fact, the eBook market is vastly growing and the revenue from eBook sales is projected to reach US$15.39bn by 2027.

Ebooks are a convenient and accessible format that can be easily accessed on a variety of devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and e-readers. This makes it easy for students to access your materials anytime, anywhere, and at their own pace.

Ebooks also tend to be more affordable than traditional textbooks, making them a more cost-effective option for both students and teachers. In addition, eBooks can be easily updated and revised, allowing you to keep the material current and relevant.

Sell online courses

Another way to make money teaching online is to create and sell an online course.

Platforms like Payhip allow you to create an engaging online course with various lesson types (videos, text, quizzes, assignments, and more) as well as additional features to keep your students excited such as drip lessons and certificates of completion.

Online courses can be accessed at any time, from anywhere, allowing students to learn at their own pace and according to their own schedule.

While creating an online course may require more time and effort than creating an eBook, the potential revenue from selling online courses is generally much higher. Read our article on How to Create and Sell Online Courses for a more comprehensive guide.

Become an online tutor or online coach

Unlike selling online courses, eBooks, or teaching resources, becoming an online tutor or online coach will require you to actively put in the time to meet with your students online. While this isn’t considered passive income, online tutoring or online coaching still has the potential to bring a substantial income for you as a teacher, especially if your target audience is adults who are looking to improve their skill sets for further career development.

Unlike online courses, you can tailor your tutoring methods to meet your students’ needs and learning styles. Tutors can provide personalized support and feedback, helping students to identify their strengths and weaknesses and develop effective study strategies.

Additional ways to start making money with your teaching expertise

In addition to these options, there are several other ways to make money teaching online. For example, you can offer consulting services to other teachers or businesses, or start a blog or podcast to share your knowledge and expertise with a wider audience.

How to Make Money Teaching Online (Step-by-step Guide)

Here is the step-by-step guide on how to make money teaching online:

  1. Determine your teaching niche
  2. Decide what format you’d like to use
  3. Create a website
  4. Create and upload your teaching content for sale
  5. Promote and grow your customer base

How to Make Money Teaching Online

1. Determine your teaching niche

The first step to making money by teaching online is to determine your teaching niche. This involves identifying your area of expertise and the subject matter that you are knowledgeable about.

Before you dive head first into creating teaching resources or online courses, it’s important to choose a niche that is in demand and has a market that is willing to pay for your services. You can conduct research on online teaching platforms, search for online communities, and analyze the competition to identify gaps in the market and opportunities to differentiate yourself.

You can also use Google Trends to input the keywords for your course topic and gauge the level of interest globally or by certain countries or timeframes.

2. Decide what format you’d like to use

Once you have determined your teaching niche, the next step is to decide on the format you’d like to use for your online teaching. Here are the most digital products that educators use to monetize their knowledge and expertise:

  • Online courses
  • Ebooks
  • Audiobooks
  • One-on-one coaching services
  • Memberships
  • Printable resources e.g. worksheets, spreadsheets, checklists, and more

Each format comes with its own advantages and disadvantages, and requires different levels of preparation and investment, so it’s important to choose the one that best fits your expertise, teaching style, and availability.

You can also consider offering a combination of formats to cater to your students’ various learning preferences and budgets. Ultimately, the key is to choose a format that allows you to deliver quality content while maximizing your earning potential.

3. Create a website

The next step is to create a website or online store where you can showcase your teaching expertise and also sell any products or services that you offer as an online educator. A web credibility research from Stanford shows that 75% of users admit to making judgments about a company’s credibility based on its website’s design. This means your website is a crucial aspect that determines the success of your business.

Your website should be visually appealing, user-friendly, and provide valuable information to your audience. It should also have a secure payment gateway to ensure safe and easy transactions for your customers.

There are various website builders available that allow you to create a professional-looking website without any coding skills. You can use a platform like Payhip to create a custom website (for FREE) and it also comes with robust eCommerce features for selling various digital products.

Here’s a free tutorial on how you can create a professional website for FREE:

4. Create and upload your teaching content for sale

In your Payhip account, go to the Products tab then click the ‘Add new product’ button. Next, select whichever product types you would like (e.g. online courses, digital downloads, membership, etc), and you’ll be taken to the screen where you can add your product details.

Uploading your teaching products on Payhip is very intuitive, but if you need a little extra help, there’s a free comprehensive guide on how to upload your product listings here.

5. Promote and grow your customer base

Well, you’ve created and uploaded your teaching content for sale – congrats! Now it’s time to promote your business and attract some customers. Here are some effective ways to promote your online teaching business:

  • Social media marketing: Get your teaching groove on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, TikTok and LinkedIn. Share your knowledge, engage with your followers, and build a community of loyal fans. #TeachItLikeYouMeanIt
  • Email marketing: Start building your email list so you can use email marketing to promote your business to your subscribers. To sweeten the deal, consider offering a free gift, such as an eBook or a free printable PDF to encourage your website visitors to sign up on your email list. Send regular newsletters, updates, and exclusive offers to keep your tribe engaged and interested in your products.
  • Collaborate with influencers: Two heads are better than one, especially when it comes to growing your business. Collaborating with influencers or other educators in your niche can help you expand your reach and gain more visibility. Join forces and create some magic! You can also create an affiliate program within your Payhip dashboard and reward the people who have promoted your products to their audiences with commissions.
  • Offer free content: Who doesn’t love free stuff? Teach online and offer valuable free content such as blog posts, e-books, or webinars to attract potential customers and build trust with your audience. Give them a taste of your expertise, and they’ll be begging for more.

Join over 130,000 sellers who have launched their online businesses with Payhip

Final Thoughts – Make Money Teaching Online

Teaching online can be a fulfilling and lucrative career, but it takes time, effort, and a passion for education to succeed. Using Payhip to create, market, and promote your online course and other teaching products can make a huge difference in its success. Our platform offers free comprehensive built-in features that enable you to make money by teaching online and concentrate on the most rewarding aspect of the process – sharing your knowledge with a global audience and earning passive revenue. We handle the technical complexities of the process, allowing you to stay focused on creating top-quality content.

Time to put on your thinking caps and start brainstorming some brilliant ideas for your online teaching business. Remember, the world is your oyster (or your classroom, in this case), so don’t be afraid to take risks and try new things. Who knows? You might just be the next big thing in the world of online education.


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