Online tutoring is a profitable business for all educators. There are companies worth billions of dollars, doing only online tutoring. We have individual tutors who are making six figure money doing the same. This industry is adapting to the latest innovations in technology and pedagogy. That is why it will continue to grow in the years to come.
Here I have provided information on Starting Your Online Tutoring Business. All this can be a good starting point to start online tutoring business. I have also included the vendors who provide the said services. This information will help both tutoring agencies and individual tutors.
Here is a list of 5 easy steps to start your own online tutoring business. This list includes all the required things from setting the online shop to collecting money from tutoring sessions.
What is Online Tutoring?
For those of you, who do not know much about online tutoring, here is quick tutorial. Online tutoring is very much same as offline or traditional tutoring, with one major difference that it is conducted online. Tutors communicate with students using their laptop or mobile phones. In the tutoring sessions, tutors and students can see and hear each other. They can write on the shared digital writing board. The sessions can be conducted one-to-one (private tutoring) or one-to-many (group tutoring).
What do you need to start online tutoring business?
- Online Shop – To start online tutoring business, as a tutor or tutoring institute owner, you need an online shop so that perspective students/ parents can know of your services and contact you. Here you can also tell about your specialities, schedule, availability, contact details, payment etc. Here are few examples of the same
- Website – WordPress, myTutoring, custom development etc
- Social media account – Facebook, twitter etc
- Instant messaging account – Whatsapp, WeChat etc
- Skype and Gmail Account
If you represent tutoring institute, it is advisable to have an integrated website. That looks far more professional than other options.
- Online Classes – Second most important thing you would require is virtual classroom. This is where you will be teaching your students. An important thing to consider here is that your classroom should be mobile compatible. Some of the vendors even give options to record the online session. This can be of various kinds
- Video conferencing style – Skype, Google hangout, etc
- Virtual Classroom plugin – WizIQ, BitPaper, Bigbluebutton etc
- Website with integrated virtual classroom – Custom development, myTutoring etc
- Create Online Courses – To attract students, you will need to create online courses. Teaching through online courses is more profitable than one-to-one tutoring. These courses can have self learning content or live learning module as well. You will need a mechanism where you can dynamically create and edit the courses. Your options for the same are
- Online course websites – Coursera, Udacity, edx etc (don’t have live learning feature)
- Listing course in social media and asking students to contact you directly
- Own website – myTutoring, custom development
- Scheduling and online enrolment – You would also need some mechanism from where interested students can enrol in your courses. Here are few ways to do the same
- Manual process – expressing interest through phone call or email
- Appointment scheduling system – Google Calendar, SimplyBook etc
- Website – myTutoring, custom development
- Payment Collection– One of the main reasons why you are doing tutoring is to make more money. To collect fee from the students, you need some kind of mechanism. This mechanism can be
- Online payment wallets like Paypal
- Collecting money directly in your bank account
- Having payment gateway enabled website – myTutoring, custom development
These are the basic features you would need to start online tutoring business. However there are many others as well like marketing tools, administrative portal, notification and reminder tools, etc.
As a private tutor who is just starting online business, it will take some time to gain traction. If you are associated with tutoring agency, you should try to leverage from your existing business and convert some offline students to online medium. That will be a good starting point.
The information given here is a good starting point for anyone looking to start online tutoring business. But even before that, you need to have a business plan. In that you need to realistically envision how much you can earn in next one month, one quarter and one year. Accordingly, you should decide to invest your money.
Tell us what do you think are the most important things required to start online tutoring business.