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How To Create An Online Course

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  1. Welcome To How To Create An Online Course
    1 Topic
  2. Start Here: Building An Effective Course
    6 Topics
  3. Fundamentals Of Creating An Online Course
    8 Topics
  4. What Do You Need To Create An Online Course?
    6 Topics
  5. Setting The Stage For Your Online Course
    7 Topics
  6. How To Create An Online Course
    8 Topics
  7. What To Do After Your Course Goes Live
    4 Topics
  8. A Summary Of Creating An Online Course
    1 Topic
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You’ve published your course but no one will do it and unless you sell it. In this lesson, I’ll show you the simple yet effective process that I use to sell my own courses after creating them.

Sales Mechanics Of Online Courses

Early on, we talked about about planting seeds by helping people. Now it is time to actually look into implementing these strategies by promoting your course.

There are a variety of ways to do this, but my favorite are answering questions in forums, doing guest blogs posts, having a YouTube channel or giving away some free content on your site as a lead magnet to build an email list..

By helping people you will grow your audience in an organic way. They know you, so they will be a warm audience to sell your course to.

The other option is selling to people who don’t know you – this is a cold audience. They may be directed to you from advertising such as Google, Facebook, YouTube, or even from an affiliate marketing partnership.

A cold audience needs to be taken through a warming up process. You could do this by directing them to a helpful webpage that includes something for free in exchange for their email address.

After that an automated sequence of emails could be sent out first an introduction, then some emails with some information to help them related to your course topic to warm them up and then later you can send some sales emails.

Alternatively you could warm them up with a sales video like a recorded webinar that will include some of your course content.

A warming up method should apply some sales psychology. This is so your cold audience can feel the same emotions they would have if you had helped them organically like you do with your warm audience.

This includes proving that you know what you are talking about – building trust and social proof – all in a friendly way so they like you, and they feel included in your community.

You may even want to include some urgency or scarcity such as “only for the next 10 minutes will you get it for this great price”

So either way, if you get your audience organically or through advertising, they need to be warm before you direct them to a sales page where you can take them from warm to hot so that they will buy.

On the sales page you can direct them to click the purchase button to then take them through a smooth checkout and payment process that is followed by a thank-you page.

Ideally you want your publishing platform to have all of these features.

To support this though you may need a website, email marketing software to collect email addresses, possibly webinar hosting and a way to receive the payments such as PayPal.

Understanding Conversion Rates for Online Courses

Now not all of your audience will be buyers and become students. The conversion rate will depend on how targeted your audience is and how well your sales mechanics work.

Generally the number is low though so you could be looking at around 5% for example.

Let’s say you want to make $10,000 and your course is $100, then you’ll need 100 students.

Based on a 5% conversation rate you’ll need 2,000 people to funnel through your sales mechanics. Let’s say you are doing this with adverts at $1 per lead then it would cost you $2,000 to make the $10,000 in sales.

This just an example and its not linear, for example your advertising audience might cap out so spending more money on adverts might have diminishing returns and not lead to more students.

It is good to think through the process though so you know where to tweak to find the sweet spot.

For example, you may find your conversion rate stays the same if you increase your price which means you can get away with a smaller audience or just make more money.

Now no matter how you get your audience, having a truly valuable course will make it much easier to articulate the value exchange of the sale and will contribute to a higher conversion rate.

Pro Tip: If you have money to spend, there are CRO agencies that you can use to increase your conversion rates. I highly suggest looking into this option if your budget allows.


If you are like me, you are probably not a fan of the sales process. You just want to help people.

The way to look at it though is, if you have a valuable course that can change someone’s life, then you have to find a way to get it in their hands.

Action For You

Set up the sales mechanics for your online course.

Let Us Know In The Comments

Will you be selling your course initially through organically grown audience or with paid advertising or both?


  • Website – Squarespace
  • Email marketing – Mailchimp 
  • Integration software – Zapier
  • Deadlines – Deadline funnel


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