How to Start An Online Teaching Business (4 Options)

This post contains affiliate links. For more information, please see my disclaimer.

If you are interested in owning an online teaching business but don’t know where to start, this is the article for you!

Starting a teaching business requires a lot of work and a determined mindset to get things done.

Here are four online teaching businesses to consider and how you can create them:

1. Set Up Your Online Teaching Website

You can set up an online teaching website without major expense.

If you want a simple website that showcases your skills and talent, you can use wordpress.com. This is free, but it comes with the following limitations:

  • You won’t be able to monetize your website
  • You can’t install plugins or themes that aren’t on the site
  • Limited customizations and features
  • You can’t remove WordPress.com’s branding and ads
  • Limited 3GB disk space

If you want to use WordPress.com for commercial purposes, you might have to pay up to €540 annually to be able to install new plugins and themes and accept currency from other countries.

With WordPress.org, on the other hand, you can launch a completely functional website for a very low price under $100. You will have complete authority over your site and support from the hosting site.

To do this, you need to pick a web host. We recommend Namehero as the best place to start your website. We use it for all our sites!

  • Get started for $3.13/ month here
  • Unlimited storage with high-speed infrastructure
  • 24/7 customer support if you have any problems

From a user’s point of view, Namehero works similarly to WordPress.com, except you are more in control of the website.

Here is an online teaching website that I created with web hosting and Generatepress theme. A page builder can help design all the blocks and you don’t need to be a tech wiz to create it… I made this in about two weeks while still working on my other projects:

It allows for payments to be made on the site. If you set up a Stripe account, you can accept global payments, even from countries like China (they have Alipay integration).

Learn more about creating an online teaching website.

2. Join The Teacher Entrepreneur Network

The Teacher Entrepreneur Network is a group coached by James Liu, a former ESL student from China. He has helped thousands of teachers recognize what they are worth and start their online teaching businesses.

If you are unsure how to proceed and want to get your own high-paying clients without a website, James teaches you how to do so.

James shows teachers how they can earn $100 per hour teaching a niche. A niche is a subset of people in business who need to learn English for their specific career.

Think about a general practitioner and a neurosurgeon. A neurosurgeon can always charge more for their highly specialized service. James wants regular teachers to specialize in a specific niche and therefore charge higher prices.

Rather than teaching all students as a general teacher, James shows teachers how they can pick a certain specialization and develop the sales copy and marketing messages needed to attract high-paying clients. He shows how to market your course and find students.

If this is something you think you might be interested in, be sure to check out James Liu’s 21-day challenge here. The 21-day challenge will help you:

  • Learn marketing and sales strategies for teachers
  • Contact and arrange sessions with your leads.
  • Get your first paying clients in just 21 days.
  • How to scale to a six-figure business.

I have already completed the 21-day challenge and still communicate with the teacher group frequently, including James Liu. Learn more in my Teacher Entrepreneur Challenge Review.

3. Set Up An Educational Marketplace

Pinlearn Business

Maybe you would prefer to be behind the scenes, setting up an educational marketplace for students and teachers to join.

You actually don’t need to be a computer wiz to do this as there are plenty of websites that already facilitate these types of websites. However, you will need to find a way to effectively market the website.

You can set up an educational marketplace and emulate the success of sites like Preply, iTalki and Udemy.

Pinlearn is an option for teachers who want to start their own online teaching website and earn money from one-on-one or group classes or courses carried out by other teachers. Check it out here.

All that is required for you is to get the word out there and find students. Finding teachers to sign up is usually easy, as online teachers are always looking for places to advertise their services on the web.

4. Outschool

Outschool Teacher Business

Many teachers have developed their online teaching business via Outschool.

If you are from the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand or the UK, this could be a suitable opportunity for you.

Outschool allows you to develop interesting courses for students between the ages of 3-18 years. You can choose to create one-off classes or courses that continue for a period of time.

You can teach everything from math to music to mindfulness! The idea is to be original and creative in your offering so you can attract more students to your classes.

Outschool takes a 30% commission from each class. However, as there are so many students in each class, teachers can actually make six-figure businesses from Outschool (some teachers make 10K monthly).

If you register as a corporation, you also receive a lot of benefits! This is what makes Outschool so appealing to teachers.

If you can’t apply to Outschool, consider an alternative site such as Preply. They will also market your profile for you in return for a commission rate.

Other Considerations

Now that you have decided on the foundation of your business, you might want to think about some other aspects of your teaching business…

Develop Your Curriculum

When developing your curriculum, you should consider whether you will use digital books, websites or digital curriculums, such as Off2Class, to help teach students.

Rather than spending all your time developing your curriculum before you launch your teaching business, make sure that you know how to market yourself first and are capable of acquiring the students.

The last thing you want is to develop your curriculum and not have any students to teach!

How to Find Students

Setting up the website is the easy bit.

The most important part is not setting up your website but learning how to market it effectively. You could have the best service in the world, but if people can’t find you or you can’t show people how valuable your offering is, then your income is zero.

Tips for Marketing Your Website:

  • Join Facebook groups with English learners and tell them about your site
  • Offer bonuses to current students who refer others
  • Give them something of value, like a free e-book
  • Private message your target audience on LinkedIn or another social media site
  • Advertise yourself on YouTube, Instagram, or Pinterest
  • Tell others about your site on Quora or Reddit
  • Set up Facebook ads
  • Offer your services on Craigslist or equivalent
  • Offer affiliate commissions to influencers and bloggers who can advertise you.

As you can tell, there are tons of free and paid ways to market yourself to students. The method of marketing you choose will depend on your budget and how much time you have.

In Conclusion

These are some of the ways you can start an online teaching business.

Teaching online can be very lucrative, and by now, you can see the potential in it.

There are many ways to establish your teaching presence online, and it doesn’t have to be expensive!

With some marketing skills, you can pivot your online teaching business toward success.

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I'm an Irish ESL teacher and blogger. I started teaching in 2016 and have since taught in the UK and Europe.You will find tons of resources to help you start teaching online, grow your income, and learn and teach languages on this site.Please show some love and support by sharing this article with others. Thank you!

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