How to Grow Your Online Tutoring Business


Most tutors who become online tutor, do so with the dream of eventually becoming a full-time online tutor. All these tutors want to quit their full time day job and work from home. Own hours, own students, no more meetings, just tutoring. But very few tutors actually are able to do so. In this article, we will tell you how to grow your online tutoring business.

How to grow your online tutoring business

To become a full-time online tutor, you will need many students. There is no fixed number here. But it will depend on how much you charge for each class and how many hours per week you are tutoring. We have always recommended tutors to ask for decent tutoring fee. But definition of decent varies for person to person. Still you would need 20-30 students on a regular basis to sustain yourself on a full-time basis.

Sell yourself differently based on what your tutoring style

Selling yourself properly is very important part in the process of how to grow your online tutoring business. Here are some strategies to sell yourself as the right online tutor to prospective students. You need to differentiate yourself from hundreds of other options available to students looking for online learning. How do you stand out in the crowded field of physical tutoring agencies, online tutoring websites, tutor marketplaces and other independent tutors like you?

Starting point here is to identify your competitive advantage. What competitive advantages or differentiating points do you have as an online tutor over all your competitors. It could be your experience, academics, testimonials, knowledge etc. In my understanding your key competitive advantage should be personalization, which you need to emphasise repeatedly in different ways. As an online tutor you are able to personalize the learning experiences of each student, is the most important asset to have.

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How to Differentiate Yourself as an Online Teacher

What do parents/ students really want

One of the biggest challenges for online teachers is the lack of clarity and transparency in the online tutoring marketplaces. Anyone can call himself a teacher, and use all kind of certifications and credentials differentiate himself. This makes it very difficult for parents and students to understand your uniqueness. Thus only means to choose a teacher is by comparing fees.

There are 3 factors to keep in mind here:

  1. Parents care about results i.e. end result, not your methodology
  2. Students care about experience, not your teaching
  3. Parents care about their return on investment i.e. increase in student’s marks

If you are able to address these 3 factors, you can easily differentiate yourself in online tutoring marketplace.

Results– a guaranteed quality

Teachers try to differentiate themselves by using jargons of their tools, methodology, and teaching philosophies. But parents are looking to pay for results of their children, not your jargons. You can stand out as a teacher by offering results which are measurable and guaranteed.

Experience – a brand they can trust

Everyone looks for big brands. Nobody wants to work with smaller or unknown brand. Why? Strong brands are synonymous of good customer experience and over-delivering on results. When such a reputation is built over period of time. When such thing happens, prices are not compared and options are not explored. Students will simply go for their wallets.

Word of mouth is the best way to build your brand. Although slow process, but works much better than any other option. Second best options is genuine reviews and testimonials. Then comes much publicised social media. The reason I am putting social media on third place is there is too much information that it is hard to differentiate between genuine and fake reviews. But reach and speed of social media is much more than other medias.

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Return on Investment – measurable results

You can safely assume that parents have already met and been disappointed with n number of teachers, before they are meeting you. They are now thinking in terms of milestones and quantifiable results. For them, the most important thing is their children’s performance. They will understand only this language.

Teaching can also be just as measurable. It can have a well defined roadmap. There can be set of deliverables at each milestone. Students and teachers should have clarity on their involvement and the entire process should fit on one page. This process is highly transparent. Because all the stakeholders are on same page, they can work as a team cohesively.

Here you can differentiate yourself by speaking the same language as your clients ie parents and students. While many teachers talk in terms of competencies and science-backed jargons, but parents do not understand that. Therefore, rather than convincing them of the value in your teaching, talk in terms of what they will receive in terms of improvement in scores, or admission in college or better confidence. All these point to measurable ROI.

We hope our article on how to grow your online tutoring business and how to differentiate yourself as a tutor are useful for you. Do let us know your views and feedback in the comment section below.

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