Just like me, you’ve probably read far too many blog posts and watched countless webinars on why your creative business needs to be selling an an online course or product.
Today I’m delighted to have e-course expert Tracey Meyer here to share her wisdom on how to avoid 5 (very) common mistakes when creating your online course:
According to Forbes, the competitive online course industry is estimated to be worth $107 billion and growing. There’s never been a better time to sell and launch an online course or product.
However…if you want to earn a steady passive income from your courses, you need to design a course that stands out and is unique. A poorly designed course can harm your reputation and result in unhappy customers and refunds.
But let’s face it, not everyone has the know-how to execute a well designed online course. To check if you’re making some common course mistakes, read on:
1. Information Overload
Are your courses swamped with information? Do you find yourself wanting to tell your students everything you know about a topic? We’re all guilty of waffling on about a topic we’re passionate about.
However, a good course gives you only the necessary content to help you to achieve the course goals in the shortest time possible. As the course creator it’s your job to give your students only the NEED to know content. Nice to know content is great but if it’s not necessary, leave it out. If you really want to include it; offer it as an optional resource or download.
2. Too much on screen text
I always recommend that you limit the amount of on screen text. On screen text should only be used for introductions or summaries. Ideally you should be creating multimedia such as presentations, video’s, screen recordings etc. to deliver your course content.
However, if you insist on typing on screen text, at least break it up into paragraphs with headings and sub-headings or add bullet points or icons to create interest. This will improve the readability and visual appeal of your course.
3. Using the wrong images
It’s a well know fact that as humans we respond better to visuals than just text. The key is to choose the right images. Images with no purpose will only distract your student. You need to understand why you’re including an image.
Using images purely for decorative purposes can lead to confusion! Aim to always use good quality images when you want to show relationships, explain complex concepts, teach a process, show instructions or perhaps add a bit of humour to your course.
4. Lengthy lessons
Micro learning is the name of the game. In our time poor society, we just don’t have many spare hours to spend studying an online course. Instead we’re literally learning on the go; in between nappy changes, ad breaks, lunch breaks, cooking…you name it!
For this reason, your lessons or units need to be bite-sized and manageable for your students. Stick to a maximum time frame of 15 minutes. Anything more than that and you’ve probably lost your student’s attention anyway. Think about how often you watch half an hour YouTube videos?
5. Reading your slides
If there’s one way to annoy your students, it’s reading your slides word for word. Remember, your job is to teach, not just relay information that they’re already reading. Think of TED talks…the slides support the talk but the star of the show is the speaker.
Your audio should complement and support your slides. This is your chance to use your beautiful voice and words to connect with your students. Try to keep it conversational and always smile!
If you’re thinking about selling an online course, download my FREE guide to learn my easy 3-step process to plan, design and create online courses.
Tracey Meyer is an online course creator, writer and blogger. She helps passionate infopreneurs to share their knowledge by creating profitable online courses and programs. Tracey has been teaching and writing in the adult education industry for 8 years and has been blogging since 2009. She lives on the gorgeous Gold Coast with her cheeky toddler and loves spending time at the beach or farmer’s markets. You can connect with Tracey on Facebook and her website.