If you're passionate about teaching and helping others to achieve their educational goals, one of the best career paths for you is likely to be tutoring.
However, in-person tutoring can come with a lot of additional stress and costs.
Online tutoring, on the other hand, is much more convenient.
It means you can work from home, set your tutoring hours around your existing commitments, and save on commuting costs.
If you're interested in starting your own online tutoring business, here are 10 steps you should follow.
Follow these steps one by one to make sure you have covered all your bases and set up the best business model possible!
Make sure to consider all the options available to you before you decide how to structure your online tutoring business.
Many people assume that they'll have to go it alone if they decide to tutor online, but you can always join an existing online tutoring company such as TeachersToGo.com
if you don't want to have to work out all the finer details of running a business.
However, if you want to create your own business, you should be prepared to market your business and consider all the details relating to payment systems yourself.
This might sound like a lot of work, but the benefit is that you're likely to make more money if you set up your own business, since all the money you make will go directly to you.
Practice Your Tutoring Skills
If you think online tutoring is the career for you, you should be practicing and honing your tutoring skills while you set up your business.
This will mean that by the time your business is up and running, you'll feel prepared to jump right in..
There are platforms online such as Lrngo that can pair you with a student, so you can practice tutoring. Alternatively, if you have friends or family who are willing to let you try out your teaching methods on them, this is a good idea, too.
Make sure to make your practice sessions as realistic as possible.
For example, if you're planning to teach half-hour lessons, make sure you practice teaching for a full half-hour slot to get to grips with the pacing.
You'll need a platform if you're going to tutor online, and this is one of the first decisions you'll need to make when establishing your online tutoring business.
Some of these platforms, such as Webex and FaceTime, are free to use, which could save you some money while you're getting your business off the ground.
Other platforms, like The Lesson Space, are pay-to-use, but you'll get to use more features designed to help make the tutoring process smoother, so it's up to you.
Having the best online platform isn't going to mean much if your hardware isn't suited to online tutoring.
You need to make sure you have a reliable computer with a good internet connection and a high-quality webcam and microphone.
Ideally, your internet speed should be a minimum of 800kbps. We also recommend getting a headset because even good microphones can pick up background noise, which could interfere with the quality of your lesson from the student's perspective.
Obviously, if you're planning to make a living tutoring online, you need to set a decent price for your lessons.
However, you also don't want to charge too much since online tutoring is a competitive industry, and you don't want prospective students to be put off by extortionate prices.
In general, you can charge anywhere from $25 to $80 for an online tutoring session. $80 is quite steep, however, so usually, we would recommend an upper limit of $50 unless you're tutoring for a very specialized subject at a higher level.
It's worth looking into what online tutors for the subjects you'll be teaching are charging to see what reasonable prices look like before you make your decision.
Prepare For Online Payments
Since you're going to be tutoring online, you'll also need to set up a way for students to pay you online.
Usually, we recommend using PayPal, since this platform doesn't involve giving out any bank details to your students.
A student will just need your email address to make a payment into your PayPal account.
Bear in mind that if you're paying to use an online tutoring platform, an online payment system may already be included in your subscription.
Just remember that everything you earn tutoring online will be taxable and that you should always have a separate business account for your earnings rather than putting everything into your personal account.
Once you have your platform, hardware and payment system set up, you need to market your business so that students can find you when they look for tutors online.
You can advertise directly through Google if you're prepared to pay upfront, but if you're going to do this, we recommend hiring a professional marketer to make sure this is done correctly.
Otherwise, you can use social media to create profiles for your business.
will allow you to create a profile, and this can bring in a lot of business since it's one of the main platforms students use to find tutors.
Make sure you understand the law regarding taxes before you start tutoring online.
Self-employment means that you'll need to report your income and do your own taxes, so if you don't feel confident doing this, hiring an accountant is highly recommended.
The best people to give you advice when it comes to tutoring online are other online tutors.
Use social media and online tutoring platforms to make connections with other online tutors and get advice based on personal experience.
You can get some good tips and tricks for making more money and adjusting to your online tutoring lifestyle this way. Speaking of which...
If you're new to working for yourself or working online, then online tutoring can take some getting used to.
To ensure you don't get burnt out or overwhelmed by deadlines and appointments, create a schedule and stick to it.
Also, set a start and end time for your work day, and don't let yourself work too many hours.
This is helpful for separating your personal life from your work life, since the lines easily get blurred working from home.
Every day, create a list of tasks in order of priority. This way, you can tackle tasks methodically and efficiently.
Online tutoring is a career that can bring you a lot of flexibility, freedom, and of course, income.
If you follow our 10 steps to starting an online tutoring business, you should have no problem finding students and making a profit.
Remember to speak to other online tutors and look into the legal aspect of working for yourself before you set up your business, as this will help to prepare you ahead of time.
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