When the world was turned upside down by the pandemic at the start of 2020 it forced many office-based and professional staff to work remotely. While this was initially an awkward problem, it soon became clear that running certain types of business online could successfully be done from home.
Take tutoring, for example. Online tutoring is a growing business in the digital age and offers convenience for students who may not want to move onto campus, and for tutors at all levels. Whether you teach English as a foreign language or exam-level subjects, you can do it remotely and build a successful business.
There are plenty of tutoring management software packages that you can use to help organize your business more efficiently. In the article that follows we will give you 9 tips that you should follow to ensure your tutoring business grows successfully, so let’s not hang around!
1: Decide Your Subject
The first step in becoming an online tutor is to decide the subject you want to teach. Whatever level you are teaching at, this should naturally be a subject you are adept and/or qualified in. Many tutors choose to help foreign students improve their English. This is a great way of establishing a business with an assured customer base. If you are fluent in other languages, you also have a head start. But you could choose mathematics, science, history, art or any other subject you are able to teach.
2: Decide Your Audience
Next, you need to decide upon the audience you are looking at engaging. As above, if it’s foreign students, you have a ready market. But for other subjects you need to decide the age and level of student you are going to teach. If you are qualified to teach to a degree level, for example, you will appeal to stay-at-home students. Subjects such as history and art appeal to mature students. Define your market and stick to it.
3: Research Competitors
Check out who else is teaching online, and see if there is a niche that is being missed. The market for English as a second language is ready, but it is saturated. You might have qualifications in engineering or design, and these subjects are not covered widely online. Look for one you know you can teach, and that you know there are customers waiting for.
4: Get a Website
This is an obvious example of common sense: you need a website. It doesn’t have to be a complex one – just a simple one will do – but you do need an online presence that reassures your customers you are a serious player. Websites don’t cost a great deal to build, so find someone who has the expertise to provide you with a site that will help you gain custom.
5: Design Your Curriculum
Once you know your subject you can start looking at your curriculum. What are you going to start with? In what stages will you install tests or exams? How will you move from one stage to another? There are curriculums already written for exam-level studies so look for these from recognized exam boards if that is your chosen level. If not, start with the basics, and perhaps engage an experienced course writer to help you refine your curriculum.
6: Market Your Business
Marketing an online business is another thing entirely, but for online tutoring, you have the benefit of social media. Use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube to target younger people. Pinterest can also be useful. Start a blog and use targeted ads, and put them on education, school, and university sites. There is plenty of material online to help you with your marketing, and you can hire a freelance for little money to get you up and running.
7: Invest in Booking and Scheduling Tools
There are streamlined booking and scheduling that will help you run your business more efficiently and they don’t cost a great deal. This is a far better way of asking your students to book one-to-one tutoring classes than using a traditional telephone and physical diary. Check them out and you’ll find one that does the job.
8: Ensure a Strong Broadband Connection
Without a good broadband connection, you will lose video links easily. Talk to your service provider or look for others with a better deal. This is a competitive market so there is plenty of research to do here.
9: Start Taking Bookings!
Once you have all of this in place, you’re ready to go! Make sure you have a strong marketing push before you launch the business in full, as we can’t stress too strongly the power and influence of online marketing. We hope we’ve helped you get an idea of how to set up your online tutoring business, so good luck with your new venture!