When it comes to pricing your online course you really have three options:
- Start with a low price
- Start with a high price
- Give it away for FREE
Now, I know that’s pretty obvious and doesn’t help much so let’s take a closer look, shall we?
Starting with a low price
Depending on the course your pricing will vary – you’ll have to test your pricing, but take a look at what else is out there – what’s similar to what you are doing? What are others charging? Common examples of low pricing are:
Ask yourself, “If I saw this online course would I buy it for X amount?”
When starting out you may want to introduce a low price to start with, knowing that you will increase it once you know it’s working and people see the value in it. When it comes to pricing it’s all about testing and seeing what works. Also, keep in mind that we tend to price ourselves lower than we should which means you should consider taking that number in your head and doubling it – something to think about!
Issues you run into when charging a low price:
- You don’t invest time in marketing it and certainly can’t afford to advertise it
- Others can perceive it as cheap and won’t see much value in it
- You can attract the wrong customers who aren’t even your direct target market
Starting with a high price
Listen, if you have an amazing online course full of valuable content that gets people results then you should have a high price tag on it. That being said, if you price your course too high no one will buy it especially if you don’t have an audience like your own email list to sell it to. Anyone in business or anyone wanting to go into business should know that growing an email list (not a social media following) is extremely important to your success. Common examples of high prices are:
- $297 +
Having an email list will help you grow your online business and sell more online courses.
Pricing your online course (or anything for that matter) is tricky. You really have to do your research, pay attention to how much time you put into creating your online course, and know how much your target market is willing to spend on it.
What’s funny is how people look at pricing and assume that a higher price item is going to be better and that a lower price item is not worth it. I’m sure you have had at least one experience with both of these options not being true, right? That’s why it’s important to know who you are selling to.
Charging a higher price for your online course:
- Allows you to invest more time and money into marketing it
- Ascribes a higher value to what you’re offering
- Attracts a more targeted customer who will buy, be inclined to take your online course, and provide valuable feedback which will help you grow as a course creator
Now it makes sense to price your online course higher, but the question still remains, how high is too high? Or how low is too low? These are great questions and there is no correct answer here.
The answer, however, will come to you through your research. Many online courses are priced at $49 or more with $199- $250 is a medium to high price tag. Again, you will need to do your research and see what makes sense for your topic and your audience. In most cases, unless your course is a super short how-to that you just want to earn a little something for the time you put into it (low pricing from above), you will want to start pricing your course at the $49 mark or higher.
Remember, you are creating short, effective, courses for your students that are not only high quality but also saves them time because you broke it down for them and gave them exactly what they wanted. Just because the lessons are bite-sized doesn’t mean your course is worthless. In fact, it’s worth more so keep that in mind when you are pricing your course.
What price model should you consider for your online course?
Again, you want to test out your pricing here and a good time to do that is in the “pre-launch” stages. You can pre-sell your course at a lower price if people sign up by a certain date. This also creates a level of urgency as your audience knows that prices will go up if they don’t act fast.
Another great way to test your pricing is to run what is called a “beta-launch.”
You start off with a low price to get a small group of people into your course and they basically test drive the course for you. They get access to the full online course, you make a sale, and everyone learns from it! This method has worked extremely well for people like Nicole Walters who launched her wildly popular 1k1day online course.
When to give the course away for free?
Typically, people will give away their online course for free for one of two options:
- They are not interested in making money because they just love sharing and getting the information out there (hey, there are people like this and we love them for it!)
- Lead generation – this is the most popular reason why people would give away their online course for free
If you are starting or running a business and want to grow your list of contacts you could create a free online course that people would sign up for. They would take it for free and in exchange, they’d give you their contact info. This demographic is referred to as a lead generation.
Again, less is more and when you go this route simply remind yourself, you don’t have to give away everything. Take this example, if you have an 8-step program you could create a free course on the first 3 steps. Then if someone wanted more, you would direct them to your paid course that covers the other 5 or all 8 in detail (remembering that each lesson video is 5-minutes or less). This is also referred to as an “upsell.”
When it comes to pricing, it’s all about the end result.
Some will say that you should base your pricing on the length of the course. How long is each lesson and was it worth it? In this case, though, each lesson is under 5-minutes and really pricing is based on the end result.
Did you get what you were looking for without having to waste a bunch of time search and trying to understand it? Yes? Then the price is not an issue as it just saved you what would have cost you double, right? It’s all about the transformation.
What need are you filling and how quickly can you deliver results?
Attract more people to your online course by researching. Take the time to see what others are charging and what your audience is open to paying for. Look at the alternatives costs and you will be able to set a price for your online course that is attractive and gets people in. Another great resource you should check out is this episode on the Smart Passive Income podcast:
While the whole podcast episode is great, and you should listen to it, if you’re on a time crunch then tune into starting at 47 minutes. Listen from 47 minutes on to learn more about pricing your online course. You should start to see connections to what you’ve read above 😉