Whether you’re an expert in a specific field or simply have a passion to share, online tutoring platforms today offer a wealth of opportunities to turn your knowledge into a source of income. And best of all, you can do it from the comfort of your own home, setting your own hours and rates.
- Here's the program
- What become an online tutor is all about?
- Choosing the right area of expertise
- What are the best tutoring platforms?
- How to find students quickly?
- How do you prepare your teaching content and interact effectively with students?
- How can you promote your tutoring services?
- Stay motivated and persevere
- Tips and tricks for success as an online tutor
- Pros and Cons
- Information recap
What become an online tutor is all about?
Online tutoring is a bit like being a virtual teacher, so your job is to offer lessons and advice in an area in which you excel via webcam. Whether it’s math, languages, music, cooking, or any other sought-after skill, your knowledge can become a valuable resource for those looking to learn online.
What’s more, the process is relatively straightforward as there are now a large number of platforms specifically dedicated to this purpose. To get started, all you have to do is register with one of them, create a profile highlighting your skills, set your rates and availability, and then wait for interested students to contact you. Courses can take place via videoconferencing tools, instant messaging, or specialized learning platforms. The flexibility offered by online courses means that students can access quality knowledge, and teachers can work from any connected location on the planet.
As well as being a source of income, teaching online courses can be extremely rewarding as you contribute to your students’ learning and development, helping them to achieve their educational or personal goals. And you don’t necessarily need a teaching degree to do this as practical skills can also be valued in the context of online teaching, as long as you have a command of the subject, clear communication, and the ability to adapt to your students’ individual needs.
Choosing the right area of expertise
But before you get started, it’s essential to determine the area in which you excel and which you’d like to teach. If you already have a specific specialization or area of expertise, this question won’t arise, but if not, it’s best to first take the time to choose conscientiously.
Start by thinking about your skills and passions. What subjects are you enthusiastic about, and in which areas have you acquired expertise over the years? Areas where you have solid experience will often be the easiest for you to teach. And don’t be afraid to explore less traditional or seemingly straightforward niches as these are sometimes in great demand. It could be something as basic as managing a Facebook account, organizing your time via Google Calendar, creating an accounting system via an Excel spreadsheet, or even simply learning how to use a smartphone.
Once you’ve identified your area of expertise, do some research to assess the competition and demand. Explore online tutoring platforms to see what subjects are popular and whether what you want to teach is part of what’s on offer. Bear in mind that passion and genuine expertise are inspiring, and students will be more likely to choose a tutor who shines with enthusiasm than another.
What are the best tutoring platforms?
Now that you’ve identified your area of expertise, it’s time to find the online tutoring platform that’s right for you. Here’s an overview of some of the best-known English-language platforms, each one offering its own special features:
- Tutor is a well-established platform providing academic assistance in a variety of subjects. Tutors have the opportunity to guide students through difficult subjects via real-time sessions. The platform’s focus on education and its range of subjects makes it a reliable choice for tutors keen to make a positive impact on students’ learning journey.
- Wyzant stands out for its personalized approach to tutoring. Tutors can offer face-to-face or online lessons, adapting their teaching methods to the needs of each individual student. The platform’s emphasis on personalization and the diversity of subjects (Algebra, chemistry, foreign languages, accounting, coding…) offered create the right environment for tutors to help students succeed in their studies.
- Preply is a platform specialized in foreign language learning. It offers teachers the possibility of teaching in an interactive virtual environment, facilitating flexible scheduling and access to students from all over the world. Tutors can personalize their teaching approaches to suit the individual needs of their learners. A solid choice, then, for tutors wishing to teach languages online and interact with motivated learners from all over the world.
- Tutorme offers a complete online tutoring experience. Tutors cover a wide range of subjects and can provide instant assistance via chat sessions or scheduled video calls. Thanks to its 24/7 availability and the variety of topics covered, this site is a convenient option for tutors and students alike looking for tutoring support.
- Cambly is an online platform focused on language tutoring. Tutors have the opportunity to engage with learners in live video sessions, improving language skills through interactive conversations. Flexible schedules allow tutors to accommodate learners from all over the world, ideal for those wishing to help others improve their language skills.
- mytutor.co.uk is a UK-based platform specializing in online tutoring for students. Tutors can teach a wide range of subjects and connect with students through online sessions. The platform’s focus on the needs of UK students makes it a valuable resource for tutors keen to make a difference to the academic lives of UK learners.
- What sets TutorOcean apart is the ability for teachers to create their own pedagogical content, enabling deeper personalization for students. In addition, the platform emphasizes the ability to set competitive rates and reach an international audience, making it an attractive choice for tutors looking to expand their reach. Thanks to its user-friendly interface, TutorOcean offers an interactive learning environment, making the online teaching and learning experience more engaging and effective.
- Superprof is a popular platform offering online tutoring in a variety of fields, including singing, yoga, guitar, programming and more. Superprof’s advantages include a wide selection of qualified teachers, the ability to customize your profile, choose to teach in person or online, and set your own rates. It’s an excellent choice if you prefer total flexibility in the way you teach.
There are many more, and a Google search will help you find them quickly, but before you commit to any of these platforms, take the time to understand the terms, any fees and benefits offered by each.
Note also that these sites are not the only ways for you to teach online. They’re the quickest and easiest way, but if for some reason you don’t want to go through this type of platform, you can also create your own website, publish your offer on social networks or classified ad sites such as Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace… There are lots of marketing tricks you can use to promote your services.
How to find students quickly?
As you’d expect, you won’t be alone in offering online lessons on these platforms, and the competition can sometimes even be fierce on certain subjects like maths or English lessons. So, you’ll need to stand out from the crowd to gain an edge over other tutors, and that starts right at the registration stage.
1Create a compelling profile
Your online profile is the first thing students will use to form an opinion about you and your skills. So This means it’s essential to make it striking and convincing to attract attention and win the trust of potential learners. Start with a photo that makes you look friendly and presents you in your best light.
Then write a clear, concise bio that highlights your skills, experience, and teaching approach. You can also include more personal details (trips taken, hobbies, etc.) if they’re of interest, and explain what makes you unique as a tutor. Use engaging, casual language, avoiding overly technical terms, so students can understand you easily.
Also include testimonials or comments from previous students if you have any. This will reinforce your credibility. Finally, make sure your profile is well organized and easy to navigate, highlighting the subjects you teach, your availability, and the rates you offer.
Take the time to attend to every detail so that your profile is both informative and eye-catching and shows potential students why you’re the ideal tutor to help them on their learning journey. A well-constructed and engaging profile can make all the difference.
2Set fair and attractive rates
Most of the platforms mentioned above allow you to set your own rates. This is crucial to your success as a tutor and should reflect both the value of your skills and the current market. To propose the optimum rate, take into account your experience and expertise, as well as the rates charged by other tutors in your field of expertise.
Also consider the length of your sessions, the complexity of the subject being taught and the level of instruction as rates may vary according to these factors. Also bear in mind that attractive rates may attract students’ interest, but it’s crucial not to sacrifice the quality of your teaching by offering prices that are too low.
3Present your services coherently
Start by identifying the specific subjects or skills you wish to teach, but avoid offering an excessive list of different courses, especially if they are unrelated. This will give you an image of credibility and expertise. Concentrate on the areas in which you really excel and where you can bring quality teaching to learners.
Once you’ve made your choice, detail each service clearly and precisely. Explain what students can expect from your courses, what skills will be developed, and how you will guide them in their learning. Use simple descriptions and avoid technical terms that might discourage learners.
Clearly state your prices for each service offered, as well as any optional extras. Transparency in this area will help students make a quicker decision. Also be sure to include your availability, so they can easily plan their sessions.
Finally, clarity and consistency in the presentation of your services will show students that you’re a professional and reliable person. And by focusing your offers on specific but few areas of expertise, and providing relevant details for each, you’ll gain credibility and confidence.
How do you prepare your teaching content and interact effectively with students?
If you’re a teacher who has already taught students, you’ve probably acquired a certain working method. However, this may not be fully adapted to online tutoring, and you may need to modify one or other pedagogical approach.
Because the quality of your educational content also plays a vital role in your success. So, before you start your first online course, take the time to plan and prepare your lessons in a thorough and orderly way. Set clear objectives for each session, identifying what you want students to learn or achieve by the end of each lesson.
Then organize the content in a logical, structured way. Divide lessons into distinct sections or steps, clearly explaining concepts, examples, and practical exercises. Make sure the content is adapted to the level and needs of each student. Use visual aids such as images, graphics, or videos to reinforce understanding.
Interact actively with your students during sessions by asking questions, encouraging discussion, and addressing their concerns. Interaction and engagement stimulate active learning and keep students interested. And if some of them have difficulties, be ready to adapt your approach to better meet their needs. Your pedagogical content should be fluid and flexible, allowing for personalization according to individual progress.
How can you promote your tutoring services?
Rather than sitting back and waiting patiently for “the first fish to bite”, it’s essential to be proactive if you want your business to meet with any modicum of success. And to that end, there are a few strategies for actively promoting your online tutoring services and attracting the attention of potential students. Some of the tips I’m going to give you here will even come in handy if you choose not to go through an online platform.
- Social networks: Use social networks to share educational tips, testimonials from satisfied students, and previews of your lessons. Create engaging posts that showcase your expertise and teaching style.
- Content creation: Write blog posts, create educational videos, or launch a podcast on topics related to your skills. This will position you as an expert in your field and attract the attention of interested learners.
- Testimonials and references: If you’ve already taught students, ask them to share their testimonials. Positive comments reinforce your credibility and influence the decisions of potential new students.
- Collaborations: Collaborate with other tutors or education professionals to organize webinars or online workshops. This will help you broaden your audience and introduce your skills to new people.
- Targeted advertising: Use online advertising to specifically target people who might be interested in your services. Advertising on social networks (e.g. Facebook Ads) or search engines (e.g. Google Ads) can help you reach your target audience without having to invest a lot of money.
- Word of mouth: Encourage your current students to recommend your services to others. A personal recommendation can have a significant impact on a new student’s decision.
Stay motivated and persevere
Becoming an online tutor can be a rewarding activity, but don’t underestimate the challenges that lie ahead. To keep your motivation and perseverance at a high level, several approaches often prove effective.
Setting clear goals is an important first step. Set achievable short- and long-term goals. This will give you clear direction and a sense of accomplishment as you take each step. And celebrate every victory, no matter how small. A positive evaluation from a student or a newly achieved goal are all moments that will boost your self-confidence and your determination.
Maintaining inspiration also plays a crucial role. Continuing to learn and grow in your field will help keep the flame burning within you. Inspiration can be found in books, webinars, conferences, or even within the tutor community, but never stop learning and evolving.
And finally, let’s talk a little about failure. It’s almost an inevitable part of the journey many self-entrepreneurs have decided to take, but it can be a source of learning too. Rather than letting yourself be discouraged, use any setbacks as opportunities to learn from your mistakes and improve. There are always one or more causes of failure. Identify them and get back in the saddle as soon as possible.
Remember why you decided to embark on this adventure in the first place. Reconnecting with your initial motivation and the reasons that led you to choose this path can help you get through the difficult times. Above all, be patient and persevere, even when results are slow in coming (but always be ready to adjust your methods according to your students’ needs and your results). Success sometimes takes time.
Tips and tricks for success as an online tutor
Before concluding this article, I’d like to offer you a few tips to help you get started with the best chance of success. I’ve already mentioned some of them, but a quick reminder won’t hurt.
- Be credible: Don’t offer too many different courses, as this will damage your credibility with students. If you have several areas of expertise, look for those with the most demand and the fewest offers, and try to be really good at what you teach.
- Personalize sessions: Tailor your lessons to the needs and preferences of each student. Personalized learning encourages engagement and satisfaction.
- Use gamification: Incorporate fun elements into your lessons to keep students interested. Quizzes, challenges, and rewards can make learning more fun and motivating.
- Encourage interaction: Encourage active participation by asking questions, holding discussions, and encouraging students to share their ideas.
- Encourage collaborative learning: Organize group sessions where students can work together on projects, reinforcing cooperative learning.
- Incorporate creative visual aids: Use mind maps, diagrams, videos, infographics, and diagrams to simplify complex concepts, make lessons more visual and reinforce student understanding.
- Encourage autonomy: Give students projects to complete outside sessions, encouraging independent learning and allowing them to work on their own.
- Incorporate real-world experiences: Link the concepts taught to real-life situations or current events to make the content even more relevant and interesting.
- Make cultural connections: If you’re teaching an international audience, learn more about your students’ cultures to create a respectful and inclusive learning environment.
- Use online collaboration tools: Use tools like virtual whiteboards to work together in real time, which encourages interaction and often ensures a better understanding of the subject.
- Regularly assess student satisfaction: Ask your students for feedback on what’s working well and what can be improved in your sessions. Do this systematically as every student has his or her own particularities.
- Be responsive: Respond quickly to requests from potential students, whether on the platform or elsewhere. A student’s will is sometimes very volatile, and they can sometimes show little patience, which is why it’s a good idea not to hang around when you’re asked a question.
If you’re a teacher without a job, or a teacher whose salary is insufficient to cover your daily expenses, then the idea of offering online courses is one to seriously consider. All you need is a small laptop and a stable, fast Internet connection to get started. And even if you don’t come from a teaching background but have interesting things to teach, this advice is for you too. Whatever your area of expertise, you should know that there are students out there who would be willing to pay for you to share your knowledge with them.
So, of course, it won’t necessarily be easy, and you’ll probably have to compete with an ever-growing number of competitors. But if you’re really good at what you teach, choose the right area of expertise, set fair and attractive rates, create a compelling profile, and prepare quality teaching content, you’ll have every chance of succeeding in this online business.
So, that’s the end of this article. And you, have you ever considered becoming an online tutor? If so, what area of expertise do you plan to teach? And most importantly, what makes you hesitate? Share your thoughts in the comments below. Your point of view enriches the discussion and helps other readers make decisions.
Environmental and climate change issues are more than ever at the heart of the concerns of this 21st century, which is why I am proposing a few ideas that will enable you to limit the negative impact that the implementation of this idea could have.
These solutions that I suggest are sometimes largely insufficient to compensate for these negative impacts, such as carbon offsetting. Unfortunately, there is not always an ideal and 100% efficient solution, far from it. And if you have others, please do not hesitate to share them in the comments below.
This activity is quite beneficial for the environment as it saves teachers and students from having to use often GHG-generating means of transport to get to school or any other place of learning. There are, however, a few elements that can be more harmful to the planet. And the main one is probably the type of device you’ll be using for your online course sessions.
If you have to buy a computer for this purpose, I’d encourage you to opt for a laptop and entry-level model, which consumes less energy than a powerful desktop model. The most important thing here is to have a stable and sufficiently fast Internet connection – the computer doesn’t require any special power in this case.
The other factor that prevents this idea from falling into the eco-friendly category is the transmission of data through servers, which consume a lot of energy and therefore generate a fairly heavy carbon footprint. Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do about this at your own level, except perhaps to opt for a platform that manages this problem (but none exists at the time of writing—at least not as far as I’m aware).
- You can set your own hours, allowing you to adjust your schedule to suit your personal preferences and commitments.
- You can reach a global audience interested in your skills, expanding your teaching opportunities.
- Online teaching eliminates the expense of travel, renting premises, etc., which can translate into substantial savings.
- You can teach a variety of subjects and work with students of different levels and profiles, making each session unique and rewarding.
- Working online can isolate you as you lack face-to-face interaction with other teachers and students.
- Given the growing popularity of online teaching, competition can be fierce, requiring extra effort to stand out from the crowd.
- As an online tutor, you have to manage all aspects of your business, including planning, promotion, and billing, which can be demanding in terms of time and energy.
- Location: From home or while traveling.
- Investment: Purchase of a laptop (second-hand is sufficient).
- Earnings perspective: A supplementary salary, and even a full one if you have enough students.
- Required: Good knowledge of the subject being taught, rigor, and hard work, patience, eloquence, and method, as well as a minimum of charisma.
- Risk level: Low
- Implementation time: Fairly rapid if you already have an area of expertise.
- Material needed: A laptop, even an entry-level second-hand one, and a smartphone.