How to create an online course: A step-by-step guide to success

Figuring out how to create an online course can be daunting. You might be ready to share your knowledge, but how exactly will you do it?  

Creating an online course presents great opportunity. The eLearning industry’s market value is projected to reach $325 billion by 2025. You want a piece of that pie. We’re here to help.

In this guide, we’ll cover:

  • What you need to create your online course
  • The different types of online courses
  • How to create an online course, step-by-step
  • Pricing your course
  • Creating a website for your course
  • Writing a blog to go with your course
  • Building your marketing list

If you’ve already built the foundation of your course and are looking for tips on how to market and sell it, head over to our guide to selling courses online.

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No risk, no contracts, no long-term commitment.

What you need to create an online course

Build a Solid Foundation For Your Online Course

Besides some elbow grease and a little moxie, you’re going to need a few practical items to start creating your online course. To keep costs to a minimum when you’re just starting out, use what you already have.

A few essential items to get you started are:

  • A computer. It doesn't have to be the best computer out there. You can even borrow a computer from someone else if you have to. If you need to buy a computer, let the salesperson know that you will be shooting and editing video so they can point you to a device with enough bandwidth for your needs.
  • An internet connection. We live in a world with so many free Wi-Fi hotspots. You could get your business started sitting in a coffee shop, a library, or even in your parents’ basement. We all have to start somewhere! 
  • A smartphone. You don't have to buy an expensive piece of video equipment if you’re just starting out. There are plenty of ways to shoot great video content on your phone. As you start to make money off your course, set some cash aside to invest in a professional camera later on.

If you’re ready to upgrade your tools for online course creation, you might think about investing in:

  • Audio equipment. As much as we may associate digital content with visuals, audio is just as important. A good microphone can have a huge effect on the quality of your online course. 
  • An HD video camera. While you can record with your laptop, tablet, or phone camera, you’ll eventually want to upgrade to something more professional. The Canon VIXIA and Sony CX405 are both great options.
  • Lighting. A badly lit video will be unwatchable. Lighting rings offer an effective and affordable way to light your videos. You might also consider a studio lighting kit on Amazon, which costs about $100 and has everything you need. 
  • A Green Screen. The green screen is the key to high production value. It allows you to customize your background and incorporate images or b-roll footage into your course videos. Make sure you pull the green screen taut so that there are no wrinkles or sagging that would negatively affect the background quality. 
  • Wevideo. If you already have professional-level editing experience you can skip this and use a more professional level editing software like Final Cut Pro. However, if you have little to no video editing experience, Wevideo is for you. For $15.99 per month, you’ll be able to make professional-looking videos even if you’ve never edited a video before! It is the easiest and best video editing software on the market for non-professional editors. 
  • A screen-recording program like Screenflow or Camtasia to create videos of presentations and slide decks. 
  • A teleprompter program like Teleprompter lite. You can turn a laptop or tablet into a teleprompter so you can read your script while looking into the camera.
  • An all-in-one platform that you can use to host and market your course content. Be aware that some platforms will require you to pay them a cut of your course sales. Here at Kajabi, we don’t operate like that. See why so many course creators choose Kajabi.

Try Kajabi free for 14 days

No risk, no contracts, no long-term commitment.

You don’t need a ton of fancy equipment to create a good online course. What’s most important is your expertise.

However, the higher quality of content you can produce, the more you can charge for your course. Invest what you can and over time you will be able to build a professional setup.

Different types of online courses

From short workshops that present simple solutions, to deep dives that go into great detail about your area of expertise, there are so many different types of online courses. 

To create an online course that best meets your customer’s needs, you’ll need to define the course type. You can categorize different types of content based on the intensity of the curriculum and what the customer will get out of the course. 

We’ll focus on these three main types of online courses:

  1. Introductory courses. These courses are meant to showcase your expertise. Students quickly gain knowledge without getting too far into the weeds. 
  2. Transformative courses. These are deeper dives that guide students towards expert-level results. Subject-wise, they are more focused than an introductory course. They will be more challenging and time-consuming than an intro course.
  3. Certification courses. You can leverage your expertise to certify students in your field. These tend to be highly profitable courses. They may also entail one-on-one trainings and third-party testing. Make sure you have the right credentials to certify your students.

Creating online courses: A step-by-step guide

Now that you have the right gear and know what type of course you want to make, we’ll teach you how to create an online course in eight simple steps.

Step 1: Choose your topic and niche

The first step to creating an online course is figuring out what topic you will teach. 

To narrow in on the right topic, ask yourself:

  • What are you already an expert in? 
  • What have you taught before? 
  • What certifications or degrees do you have?
  • What are some things you’re REALLY good at?
  • What do your friends and family always ask you for help with?
  • What are you passionate about?
  • What do you enjoy talking about?
  • What would you like to learn more about? 

Once you’ve landed on a subject, you’re not done. It’s time to get even more specific.

Tips for choosing your niche

Too many people approach creating an online course the wrong way. They pick a super broad topic, hoping to attract more attention by widening their reach. It’s understandable why.

Bigger “net” equals more “fish,” right?

That may work if you work on a fishing boat, but when it comes to online marketing, that strategy isn’t going to fly. You need to narrow your focus and home in on a niche.

A niche is a specific segment of the market. It is defined by what that segment is drawn to. 

It can help to ask these questions when thinking about a possible niche:

  • What are their interests?
  • What are their needs?
  • What resources currently exist to help meet the needs of the niche? 

Here’s a list of general niches that have been successful on Kajabi:

  • Art & Design
  • Beauty
  • Blogging
  • Business
  • Finance
  • Health & Fitness
  • Leadership
  • Lifestyle
  • Marketing
  • Music
  • Personal Development
  • Social Media
  • Spirituality
  • Technology
  • Video
  • Writing

Even these niches are too broad. You need to narrow your niche down even more. To find a profitable niche try the following exercises:

1. Use Google’s Keyword Planner.

Start thinking of a niche you are passionate about.

For example, say you are a great typist. You can type 80+ words per minute on a keyboard have figured out a lot of tips and tricks along the way.

How could you select a niche based off that?

Head on over to Google’s Keyword Planner (it’s free) and select “Search for new ideas using a phrase, website, or category.” Type in your course topic to get an idea of what the niche looks like.

You want at least 1,000 searches of the keyword per month because that indicates there is a good amount of interest in your idea.

For this example, we searched “how to type faster.”

You can see already that the phrase “how to type faster” is searched for 10k-100k times a month. Variations on the keyword phrase are extremely promising too!

Another thing to look at is the competition. It’s low for this phrase. With that kind of serious search volume, and very little to compete with this could be a very nice niche to settle into.

But what if your topic has less than 1,000 searches a month?

Option #1: You can try modifying your search to find the keywords that get more attention. Just a simple rephrasing can alter your results. 

Option #2: Go for it anyway.

You can run keywords all day, but if you already know what you're passionate about, then it’s worth taking a stab at it.

Take Greg Todd for example. He’s a Kajabi Hero who teaches marketing to physical therapists.

Here’s a look at the search volume for his niche:

Not only is the search volume low, the competition for that market is pretty cutthroat.

But Greg still managed to see success in his niche because of his passion. He saw a need in his market, and he bridged the gap.

2. Scope out the competition

Now that you know your niche has potential, let’s enter our online course topic into Google to see what the competition looks like.

Right away you can see that a typing niche appears to be a good market to share your knowledge with the world.

Out of all of these results, none of them offer a premium course.

And creating a course complete with video instruction and your first-hand knowledge has some pretty epic potential. (If you’re a great typist, feel free to steal this niche for your course. We won’t hold it against you.)

Another thing to notice is the lack of ads in the search. That means if you ever wanted to do any paid advertising, the market would be wide open for you.

If your search says competition is high, that doesn’t mean you have to move on to something else. That just means that you will really have to leverage your passion to stand out.

Look at Bob Heilig, for example. His niche is the ultra-competitive space of network marketing. Despite the competition, Bob had killer success in his niche because of his dedication to the topic. 

So, if you already have a niche in mind that you are passionate about don’t let the fear of competition stop you from sharing it.

Remember, you can always change your niche later on if it’s not the right fit for you, or you just don’t enjoy it as much as you hoped. In fact, some people make a career out of building several different courses that cater to completely different niches.

The possibilities are endless.

Step 2: Find your target audience

Now that you have a course topic and niche, it’s time to take the next step in online course creation: defining your target audience.

One of the biggest pitfalls of new business owners is trying to appeal to everyone, but you can’t make everyone happy. The more you can narrow in on a group of people, the better your course will sell. 

You also need to know who you are speaking to in your content. Pretend you’re teaching a course on cooking. The way you’d speak to students with 10+ years of culinary experience is going to be way different than the way you’d speak to someone who’s never boiled water.  

We’ve all done this at one point in time or another.

As a kid, if you knew one parent would reject a request, you’d ask the one who was most likely to say yes.

And you probably even timed your request when they were in a good mood.


Because you understood the concept of a target audience: appealing to the right person at the right time, to get your desired result.

You need to build relationships with the right people in your niche. Without those relationships, your course will not make it off the ground. To start defining your target audience, ask yourself:

Who benefits from what you offer in your niche and why?

Let’s go back to Greg Todd.

He is a physical therapist who saw a pain point in the physical therapy niche. He noticed that physical therapists weren’t equipped with the tools and knowledge they needed to run a business. Physical therapy classes didn’t exactly cover the basics of digital marketing.

Greg set out to fill that need in his niche and was able to define his target audience (physical therapists with their own businesses). From there, he could set up a plan for success.

Check out these other Kajabi Hero stories and see if you can identify what unique benefits they brought to their niche and the target audience that came as a result:

  • Pam Hendrickson
    Niche: Marketing Products.
    Target Audience: Entrepreneurs who want to create and market their own products to build the lifestyle and freedom they want.

  • Jordan Valeriote
    Niche: Hardcore Music Mixing, Editing
    Target Audience: Musicians, music mixers, and producers in the music industry who want to create professional quality mixes for hardcore music.

  • Kendra Wright
    Niche: Personal Development
    Target Audience: People who want to get over their fears and stop letting them get in the way of living life.

  • Felicia Ricci
    Niche: Music, Belt Singing
    Target Audience: People (with or without a background in music) who want to learn how to belt sing.

  • Leah Mchenry
    Niche: Music, Online Artists
    Target Audience: Musicians who want to build a professional music career online.

  • Bob Heilig
    Niche: Video Marketing, Branding for Home Business Entrepreneurs
    Target Audience: Network marketing professionals and home business entrepreneurs who want to grow their team and businesses and develop their own personal brand.

  • Jeremy Henderson
    Niche: Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
    Target Audience: People who want to learn Brazilian Jiu Jitsu from home and reach their martial arts goals.

There is no reason to overcomplicate this process. If you are struggling with identifying your target audience, just ask yourself:

Who will benefit from your course and why?

Don’t worry about perfection here. You can always change and adapt this as you go.

Step 3: Research your course content

This is where your course creation becomes more tangible. In this stage you need to take all that you know about your topic and expand it even more. 

Get to know your course topic inside and out. Spend the necessary hours on the research. You don’t have to know every little thing about the subject matter, but you should know more than what your audience could easily find with a Google search.

Remember, being an expert on a topic isn’t about being a genius. It’s about knowing more than the average person. 

Take notes and bookmark sites that have good information. Talk to other experts in your field. Attend meetups, conferences, and webinars whenever possible. Take an online course! You’ll probably find that you enjoy expanding your knowledge of your chosen topic.

Your goal here isn’t just to gather all the information you think is important for the course. It’s also about leaving things out. Don’t get bogged down with information that isn’t going to add value to your course and its potential students.

Step 4: Define learning outcomes

Now that you’ve thoroughly researched your course topic, it’s time to start planning its structure. Start by defining learning outcomes. 

When figuring out how to create an online course this is one of the most important steps. What are the things you want students to have learned after completing your online course?

Without defined learning outcomes, your course could become completely aimless and essentially useless. 

Ask yourself, at the end of your course:

  • What new knowledge has been learned?
  • What new skills have been gained?

All the parts of your online course should be serving your course learning outcomes. Be specific with your answers to these questions and map every lesson back to your answers. 

Step 5: Outline your course

With your course learning outcomes in mind, start outlining your course. List out the lessons you want to include. 

Organize your modules into groupings that flow naturally with each other. Consider the parts of the material the students need to learn first in order to understand later lessons. 

Then break down each lesson further, outlining each step and idea involved in those lessons. Think about the best ways to present the information. 

Here’s a general structure you might follow:


Module 1 topic

  • Subtopic
  • Subtopic
  • Subtopic
  • Module 1 Quiz

Module 2 topic

  • Subtopic 
  • Subtopic
  • Subtopic
  • Module 2 Quiz

Module 3 topic

  • Subtopic 
  • Subtopic
  • Subtopic
  • Module 3 Quiz

Assessment for Modules 1-3

 If you were teaching a course on vegan cooking, for example, your outline would look something like this:


What are vegan foods?

  • Veggies, fruits, and grains
  • Vegan “meat”
  • Vegan “dairy”
  • Module 1 Quiz

Vegan cooking: Best practices

  • Avoiding cross contamination
  • Tips if you’re the only vegan in the house
  • Accidentally ate non-vegan
  • Module 2 Quiz

Beginner vegan recipes

  • Avocado toast with “bacon”
  • “Chicken” Caesar salad 
  • Spaghetti with “meatballs”
  • Module 3 Quiz

Assessment for Modules 1-3

One section might be better suited for a straight lecture with you talking in front of a camera. Another might be best presented with images and infographics. Yet another section might be best displayed via screen casting as you guide students through steps on how to perform a task on the computer.

Step 6: Write your course script and build your material

In this step, you’ll create your script and any other supplementary course material (props, images, infographics, slides). Nothing too abstract here. Just make sure your using your learning outcomes and outline to guide you. 

Take some time to think about ways to make your course entertaining and compelling. People pay for products because they want a unique learning experience. 

If you have ever tried to struggle through a textbook you know that most educational materials are boring. One of the major advantages of creating your own course is that you get to make it your own. 

Some Kajabi course creators dress up in costumes to bring a little excitement to the material. Others use animation to help explain the most crucial concepts in their course. 

There aren’t any set rules on making your content more engaging. But if you need some help getting started, here are six tips to keep in mind as you’re writing your script:

  1. Use stories, and jokes. One of the easiest ways to make your course edutaining is to include stories, jokes, and anecdotes related to what you’re teaching. 
  2. Make the course interactive. Courses that are interactive are more entertaining. Asking questions is an easy way to keep the audience engaged and interacting with your course. 
  3. Don’t take yourself or the subject too seriously. If you try to come across as  the most knowledgeable person in the world on your topic, you may end up coming across as stiff and boring. Have confidence in yourself and have fun. 
  4. Use repetition. Repetition is one of the most powerful tools for teaching. Studies have shown that it takes between three to five exposures to learning materials for them to sink in. In your online course, an easy way to utilize repetition is to tell your audience what you are going to teach them, teach it, and then tell them what you just taught.  
  5. Create your own language. If you’ve ever been really into science fiction or fantasy books you know that the most successful franchises have a world and language of themselves. If you want to really delight and entertain your audience create a world for them inside of your course.
  6. Use all your available communication channels. One of the great things about video is that it allows you to use communication channels like body language, movements, and facial expressions. Take advantage of this. When you tell a story do body movements for the characters. If you’re talking about a really tall guy use your hands to show how tall he was. You can also use funny voices or imitations in stories to give the characters a voice.

Step 7: Hit record

You have your script and materials are all built, now you just need to start recording.

Be sure to do a test recording first to make sure that you look and sound good. If you see any sort of shadow on your face or body adjust the lights accordingly to eliminate it.  

Take a deep breath. Then, hit record! 

Look into the camera and follow your script. Be mindful of your body language and try not to talk too fast. Play around with different tones of voice. Maybe you want to use more of an authoritative voice. Or maybe you want to keep things more casual. 

Keep your target audience in mind as you teach your material. How can you convey the information to them in a way that is engaging and effective? What will they respond to?

Usually, it takes about three recordings to get the perfect shot. Be patient and enjoy the process!

The quality and process of shooting the video will depend on what items you have for creating your course. Just remember that a more professional-looking product is often perceived as more valuable by your audience. If you can, invest in yourself.

Step 8: Edit

By this stage, all of your course material including audio, video, graphics and other visuals are all built. Now it’s time to piece them all together. 

As you’re editing, you might want to add music or an additional image. There are several online resources you can use to up the production value of your course, adding those finishing touches to make it perfect.

Use your outline as a map to edit all the pieces into one cohesive online course. There are several editing programs you can use. There are even free apps with all the tools you need like:

Once you’re done editing your course, you’re ready to price, launch, and market it.

How to price your online course

Admittedly, pricing your online course can be tricky. Price it too high and people might not buy. Price it too low and you might not be taken seriously. 

Generally, courses fall between $50-$200 but you may need to charge outside of this range. Think about:

  • How much money you put into the course.
  • The value your course will bring to students.

Are the skills your students learn going to help them make a significant amount of money? Then charge them significantly. Keep in mind, if you’re charging premium prices, you can always take a bit of the sting away by offering payment plans.

Don’t be afraid of charging too much if your course is worth it.

Create a website to house your online course

Now you know the basics of how to create an online course. But the work isn’t done. 

With your course built and priced, now you need to create a place for it to live. You need to create a course website.

So how do you optimize a website?

You want it to be extremely clear about what your niche is. As soon as someone stumbles across your site, they should know if it has information relevant to their needs.

Here are some great examples of sites our Heroes have built with the Kajabi platform. You know from first glance what each site has to offer.

Michelle Parsley, Elevate Your Art (Theme: Premier)
Niche: Photography, Photoshop Art
Target Audience: Professional artists and photographers who want to take their skills to the next level.

Diana Laverdure-Dunetz, My Healthy Dog (Theme: Primo)
Niche: Dog Nutrition and Diet
Target Audience: Dog owners who want to learn how to provide the best diet for their canine friends.

Allison and Michelle, The Dairy Detox (Theme: Premier)
Niche: Dairy Free Diet
Target Audience: People who want to eat plant-based, dairy-free diets to improve their health, feel better, and lose weight.

Shannon O'Brien, iSugar University (Theme: Premier)
Niche: Cosmetology, Body Sugaring
Target Audience: Cosmetologists who want to get their body sugaring certification to grow their businesses.

These Heroes’ niches are so diverse. But what do all of these sites have in common?

Not only are they very clean and professional, they are optimized for their niches and target audiences.

They are not all-inclusive.

They purposefully drive visitors away who have no interest in their niches, while drawing in the right people.

A sleek and professional design

With Kajabi, this is the easiest step of the process. You don’t have to be a pro designer or juggle a hundred different plugins to get a polished and functional site.

Your site isn’t the place for gaudy designs. And if your website looks like it was built 10 years ago, it will be so hard for potential customers to take you seriously.

But don’t sweat it! Kajabi has several themes built in.

Plus templates for anything you’ll need in your business.

  • Email opt-in pages
  • Thank you pages
  • Launch pages
  • Webinar registration pages
  • And more

You can pick your theme and get your website set up in less than 30 minutes.

With Kajabi, this is the easiest step of the process. You don’t have to be a pro designer or juggle a hundred different plugins to get a polished and functional site.

There are templates for:

  • Email opt-in pages
  • “Thank you” pages
  • Launch pages
  • Webinar registration pages

You can pick your theme and get your website up and running in less than 30 minutes.

Try Kajabi free for 14 days

No risk, no contracts, no long-term commitment.

Write copy that appeals to your target audience

Your web copy is crucial to an optimized website.

This content is the roadmap for your visitors. It guides them through your site and makes it clear what you have to offer. In your headlines, blocks of text, and even your website name, you want to be clear with your audience.

It may sound like a no-brainer, but your homepage isn’t the place to brag about your credentials and how awesome you are.

Your visitors want to know what you can do for them. They want to know how you can help them solve a specific problem or get closer to achieving their goals.

If your copy doesn’t tell them how your site, your content, and ultimately your course can help them do that…

Buh-bye. Click.

So, are you saying I can’t talk about myself at all? How will they get to know me?

We’re not saying that at all. You can still let your personality show in your website. If you are uniquely qualified to speak in your particular niche, then you need to voice that.

But it has to be done with a purpose.

Which headline appeals to you the most? Which one would be most likely to get your attention?

Option 1:

I Have 10 Years of Experience Coaching Successful Entrepreneurs!

I’m passionate about helping entrepreneurs thrive. I’ve worked with multi-million-dollar business owners, and I can help you reach your goals.

Option 2:

Are You an Entrepreneur Looking to Take Your Business to The Next Level?

If you’re sick of not reaching your income goals, it’s time to ditch the frustration. Get the tools you need to design a winning business strategy that will deliver the results you want.

Option 2 is the clear winner.

Why is that?

It’s not a list of qualifications. It addresses a specific pain point (income goals). And explains how you can help solve the problem (design a winning business strategy). You’ll also notice it doesn’t mention “I” or “me” once. The copy is all about the visitor and how they will benefit from the course.

If your headline copy is falling flat, try rewriting it without any first-person pronouns. Instead of writing “I can teach you how to lose five pounds in one month”, try “You will learn how to lose five pounds in one month” instead. 

You can get a little more personal on your “About Me” page. (And you should.)

Remember. You can always change and tweak as you go. Nothing is set in stone.

Create a blog to supplement your course

Blogs are one of the best ways to supplement your online course and grow your business. Your blog can be a marketing tool that speaks directly to your target audience.

If you aren’t a writer, blogs can be intimidating. But once you get the hang of it, there’s really nothing to be scared of. (You can even outsource this part of your business to someone else if you want.)

Here are some of the most compelling reasons to create a blog:

  • Drives new potential leads to your website
  • Boosts your website’s rankings in Google
  • Gets you noticed on social media
  • Additional content for your students
  • Helps convert web traffic into course takers
  • Establishes you as an authority

So how do you create a valuable blog?

Create valuable content.

Every blog post you create needs to be rich with actionable insights and value for your target audience. You aren’t writing post after post just for the sake of it. Every piece of content on your website needs to serve your audience in some way.

Lucky for you, we have an in-depth guide on exactly how to create valuable content. Make sure to check it out before you start your first post.

Today we’ll cover a basic blogging strategy. Knowing these tricks and tips will set you up for success.

Use keywords for targeted blog topics

Keywords don’t have to be intimidating or confusing.

But when you figure out how to use them, you will direct valuable and relevant traffic to your website.

Here are a few basics to keep in mind as you decide which keywords your blogs should target:

  • If you’re just starting out, target long-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords are often lower in search volume and longer in length. You have a better your chances are of ranking well for that keyword if your site doesn’t have a ton of history or authority already built up. 
  • Don’t stuff your keywords. This is a huge red flag to Google, and readers will know when you're throwing irrelevant keywords into your content for the sake of it. Keep your writing as natural as possible. Don’t try to stuff your keywords into every corner of copy on the blog. It will hurt you in the long run.
  • Have the right motives. The purpose of your content should be to help your audience. With your knowledge, you can help solve their problems and provide real value in your niche. Keywords help your content get noticed by the people that need it.w

So how do you find good keywords?

In addition to using Google Keyword Planner you can try this little-known trick to find some great keyword phrases effortlessly. All of this is done with a normal Google search.

  1. Type in a basic keyword related to your niche. (For this example, we’ll expand on the typing course from earlier.)
  2. After you hit search go all the way to the bottom, to the related searches.

The related searches are a priceless and effortless source of long tail keywords!

You can keep plugging searches in from this area to refine your target keywords even more.

Already you can see a limitless supply of blog post ideas with long tail keywords.

Another great tool is Ubersuggest.

You know how Google tries to jump in with a suggestion as you’re typing?

Ubersuggest can take a basic, barebones keyword and do all this for you in one place.

Let’s say you’re a hip-hop dance instructor and you want to launch a dance fitness course on Kajabi.

This will help you find relevant blog post ideas for your website to send you targeted traffic.

Now that you know how to find long-tail keywords. How do you use them?

When you use keywords in your content, the phrases should be seamless and natural.

Use them too little, and Google has a rough time figuring out what your content is about.

Use them too much, and you risk being penalized for keyword stuffing.

What’s the happy medium here?

There isn’t a clear-cut answer to this question. And it varies depending on your niche, target audience, and post topic.

Keeping that in mind…

A good rule of thumb is to place your keywords (and variations of it) in:

  • The meta title and description (the copy that appears in the search results)
  • A few headlines
  • The content itself, where it fits naturally

The most important part is that your keywords flow seamlessly and naturally with your content. If it feels awkward to place your keywords in a certain spot, then your readers will know something’s fishy.

Blog posting best practices

Make it your goal to publish two blog posts each week. (That’s the same strategy we use at Kajabi, and it has worked well for us.)

If two posts a week seems overwhelming,  here are a few tips to make it easier:

  • Jot down post ideas/titles as they come to you. This will serve as a rough idea bank that will get you ahead of the game when it’s time to start writing. 
  • Build a bank of extra articles. If you are caught up with all of your tasks on your to-do list, take some time to write a post. You can build up a stash of extra articles that are ready and waiting to publish in the future.
  • Use Grammarly. This is the best tool out there to make sure your writing is free of grammar and spelling errors. Even if you aren’t a writer, Grammarly will help you produce flawless content.
  • Write hands-free. This is a super effective trick to get your words on paper without the task of typing. You will need to clean it up quite a bit and add spacing and punctuation before you can publish, but the hardest part will be done in no time! If you use:

    Microsoft Word, select “Start Word Dictation” from the Edit menu and it will type out what you speak.
    Google Docs, select “Voice Typing” under the Tools menu to speak your blog content

Build your list for marketing your course

You don’t need a huge list to have a successful course launch.

Zach Spuckler is an expert in this. Launching is his specialty, and he’s a big advocate for starting small. He says that all you need to have a successful launch is a couple hundred people in your email list.

Even if you are starting from zero, 200 people isn’t a hard task to achieve. 

So how do you build your list?  

Lead magnets.

We have an in-depth guide on specific types of lead magnets and how to use them. 

Here’s the basic rundown...

Implement lead magnets on every page of your website

I’m not talking about spamming your visitors with subscribe forms all over your site.

But it is important that you have at least one relevant lead magnet on every page of your website.

Here is an excellent example of a lead magnet on Kajabi Hero, Kyle Buchanan’s website, Memorize Academy

Niche: Improving Memory

Target Audience: Students who want to develop their memorization skills to crush their exams.

This is right there on his homepage.

If you are a student struggling with your study habits this lead magnet is irresistible.

Your lead magnets can even be as simple as telling your visitors what you can offer them when they subscribe. 

Take a look at Kajabi Hero, Brad Nelson’s offer on his site, Balanced Cents.

Niche: Personal finance/budgeting/money management. 

Target audience: People who want to get a handle on their money and reach financial freedom.

Potential customers know exactly what they’ll receive for joining his list. Plus, the eight-step guide serves as a way to show his expertise and move people closer to purchasing his online course.

Lead magnets typically do well in the following locations:

  • At the very top of the page
  • In the sidebar
  • At the very bottom of the page
  • As a call-to-action at the end of blog posts
  • In the middle of the page if it’s a sales page

Don’t put too many lead magnets on the same page. It looks spammy and will drive traffic away from your website.

Every page on your site needs an easy, attractive way for visitors to give you their email. If they have to go hunting for a way to subscribe, more times than not, you’ll never get their email.

Use Facebook to foster community around your course

As your course grows in popularity, a community of students will start to take form. You need to foster this community to ensure the longevity of your course and happiness of your customers.

There are so many social media platforms you can use to grow your business. So why put the focus on Facebook?

Advantages of Facebook over other platforms:

  • Live video capabilities
  • Community is the focus 
  • Powerful ad creation tools
  • Ability to create groups
  • Easy to learn and use

You don’t need to be active on every single social media platform to market and sell your course

If you don’t already have one, make sure to set up a Facebook page strictly for your business. Keep your target audience in mind as you’re crafting the copy and images.

Your niche, and what you have to offer needs to be clear in everything from your cover photo to your About section.

To go a step further, create an exclusive group on your page that’s reserved for your students. You can use your Facebook group as a place to facilitate discussions and answer questions about the course material. Facebook groups are the cornerstones of strong community management. 

Facebook post scheduling best practices

Just like your blog, you need a consistent schedule on your Facebook page.

You don’t want to spam your followers’ news feeds. Posting too much is annoying and people will unfollow you without a second thought.

Post too little, and you will not get the engagement you need to be successful on Facebook. A page that rarely posts is not interesting to its followers. 

So how often should you update your Facebook page with relevant posts?

The best guidelines are 5-10 time a week.

Make it a goal to post on your Facebook page at least once a day. More than twice a day will drive followers away.

Here are some stats to consider when planning your Facebook post schedule:

Regarding the best times to post:

  • Facebook peaks on Wednesdays at 3:00 pm
  • 80% of the America’s population are in Eastern and Central time zones
  • Wednesday-Sunday are the best days to post on Facebook
  • Wednesday-Friday peak times: 1:00pm - 4:00 pm
  • Weekend peak times: 12:00pm - 1:00 pm

Regarding the worst times to post:

  • After 8:00 pm is the worst time to post to Facebook
  • Mondays have the lowest engagement rates

This doesn’t mean you have to post only at these times.

As you go, you’ll find the best stats and times that fit your particular audience. For example: If your niche is personal development for night-shift workers, your ideal posting time will likely be much later in the evening.

What content should you share with your Facebook audience?

  • New blog posts (with a link to the post on your site)
  • Links to other posts that are relevant to your niche
  • Announcements about your business
  • Quotes from your course or other experts in your niche
  • Videos. Check out our guide on social media and video best practices.
  • Images of educational, course-related content or behind-the-scenes shots 
  • Limited time promotions or discounts 

Do not make every post on your business page about lead generation. You want to build a rapport and community on your Facebook page. If you keep pushing your followers to click a link to your blog in every single post, you will lose their trust.

How to use Facebook Live to build your following

Videos are a powerful marketing force. And they are one of the easiest ways to get noticed on Facebook.

Our Kajabi Hero, Bob Heilig used Facebook Live videos as his main marketing strategy. His formula is simple to put to work for your business.

Here’s a basic snapshot of how it works:

  • Curate information. When it comes to topic selection, you don’t have to come up with revolutionary, original ideas. (But if you can, then by all means, go for it!) Your videos can simply be you passing along some useful information you’ve stumbled across. Just don’t forget to give credit to your source.
  • Create videos at least 2-3 times a week. Bob did a live video every weekday starting out, but if that’s too much, you can cut it back.
  • Make your video 2-3 minutes long. See, that’s not so bad. Bob’s videos were about 5 minutes each, and we don’t recommend you go much longer than that. Stick with quick videos, and you’re golden.
  • Deliver valuable video content. Your main goals for each video are to educate, empower, and entertain. No infomercials! Don’t constantly push your viewers to subscribe or visit your website.
  • Be yourself. Don’t worry about being perfect. Let your personality shine through and know that your videos (especially starting out) will not be flawless.

Start creating your online course

We have covered so much in this post, but don’t let it overwhelm you.

The most important thing to remember is to not put too much pressure on yourself as you follow this process. 

It’s a lot of work, and it takes time, but once you have the framework in place you will set your business up to have the best start possible. 

This isn’t about becoming an overnight success. It’s about building a successful business with the whole picture in mind.

You’ll make mistakes. Everyone does.

But you will grow, learn, and get back up. You are a CEO. You are building a business with staying power. You can do this!

Success isn’t an on-demand process, in any business, it’s a journey. And everyone’s journey is unique. And Kajabi is here to support you every step of the way.

It’s time to share your knowledge with the world. Explore the features that will help you create the course of your dreams.

Try Kajabi free for 14 days

No risk, no contracts, no long-term commitment.

How to create an online course: FAQs

How do I create online course content?

To create an online course, first identify your topic, niche, and target audience. Then gather your course content, define the course learning outcomes, outline your course, record it, and edit.

Which software is best for online teaching?

There are several software platforms for building online courses. The Kajabi course builder is easy to use and full of great features to host and market your course.

How do I create an online training course for free?

Most of the cost for creating a course is going to be for any equipment and software you might need to purchase. To cut these costs, try using what you already have. Your computer, smartphone, and free editing software could be all need to jumpstart creating your online course.

How do you price an online course?

When pricing your online course consider the value it brings to the students. If your course is teaching skills that will earn student substantial income, you should charge relatively high. If you are teaching a broader introductory course on a topic, you probably want to charge a little less.