(3 minute read)

In April of 2019, we conducted a survey of online teachers, most of whom were Udemy instructors. The goal was to better understand their needs and challenges. We will use this information to develop improved solutions for the upcoming v2.0 of the Teachinguide app.

As promised, we have compiled the survey responses and present them in this article.

Online Teacher Profiles

First, a look at the profile of respondents.  In terms of experience teaching online (any platform), roughly 1/3 of respondents have less than 3 years experience and 1/3 have 3-5 years experience. 17% have over 5 years experience teaching online.

An impressive 60% of online teachers responding have published 2 or more courses on Udemy. On the other hand, 30% of respondents had not yet published a course on the Udemy platform.

It seems that many of these experienced instructors are using more than the Udemy platform, as indicated in the below chart.

Online course platforms used by survey respondents

Financial Goals Vary Widely

Unsurprisingly, the financial goals for online teachers varies widely around the world. In terms of US dollars, expectations ranged from $150 a month to $100,000 a month (wow!!).  We wonder how and if the upper end of that range is being accomplished?

If that’s you, please share with us how you are achieving this income!

Sales Techniques Include Content Creation but Not Analytics

While it’s unsurprising in the above responses to see that most online teachers rely on Udemy marketing to increase their course sales, a fair amount also engage in content creation (blogs, webinars, videos) and social media promotion to sell courses. 

On the other hand, analytical tools are not widely used.  Teachinguide, of course, hopes to change this!

Online Teacher Challenges – Promoting Courses is #1

What Teachinguide was really trying to understand through this survey of was what key challenges an online instructor faces.  Promotions (coupons, marketing campaigns) was by far the most important challenge for instructors, with 95% indicating that it is a somewhat important or very important challenge. Additionally, several instructors left written comments that “marketing” was a challenge.

This makes sense since Udemy has grown to be such a competitive marketplace.

Promotions was followed by understanding and optimizing for Udemy’s SEO and Review Management, with 90% of instructors noting these issues as somewhat or very important. (For a primer on Udemy SEO, check out our previous blog on Udemy Search Rankings). 

Following is a summary of other challenges faced by online teachers in order of importance.

Issue/Challenge % ranking it as somewhat or very important
Promotions (improve reach/optimized/manage) 95%
Udemy SEO (understand/optimize) 90%
Review Management (responding/opportunities/strategies) 90%
Competition (identify/monitor/strategies) 85%
Course Dashboard (analytics) 85%
Course Topic Research (demand/audience) 81%
Marketplaces (understanding learning platforms) 76%
Creating a Course 71%

Another area of challenge noted by instructors was video production and editing. For a brief set of tips in this area, check out our previous article on how to Make Your Own Video Studio.

Udemy Marketplace Insights – Not Very Useful!

57% of online instructors indicated that they did not find Udemy Marketplace Insights useful.  We wonder what is going on here.  One instructor indicated that this tool is not very accurate and is limited in the information it provides, to the point of not being helpful where it could.

Here is one insight provided:

It shows the “Top earning courses” in specific topics, but these (sic) information are unreliable and not showing information about most of the competitors. For example, searching for “CPA Marketing” search term it lists my course as the best earning one but provides completely invalid information in “Top monthly revenue”. 

This instructor goes on to say “I don’t find it useful for any real researches”. A few other online teachers made similar comments such as, “it’s just there.. I don’t find any info insightful to me.” 

Ouch.  Needless to say we intend to do better than that at Teachinguide with version 2.0! 

And for those of you who participated in our survey, we thank you and look forward to providing you with access to the beta version in the near future! 

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