On The Road To 30K In Udemy Revenue
The Revenue Road Starts
It took me awhile to finish writing this post as July of 2016 marked my 2nd year on Udemy as an instructor now with 9 courses. The post I wrote back in September of 2014 on hitting my first $100 on Udemy continues to be popular. I thought that I would take the time to talk about my journey along the way and what I have been doing since then. I’ll break down my Udemy related revenue streams at the end of this post. I like many others starting on Udemy wondered what my next step was after publishing my first course which was about WordPress marketing. I started digging around and came across websites that allowed you to promote your course by submitting a coupon to the site. That gave me an idea and in October of 2014 I started the website Online Course Coupons which is a site to help instructors promote their courses. It was a place that instructors could get their courses promoted and I would take a small cut of the revenue as an affiliate of Udemy. I also compiled a list “Course Marketing Checklist” that remains popular to this day and is a list of other sites like mine and started the Facebook Group “The Online Course Promotion Group: Featuring Udemy, Skillshare and more!” where instructors can market their courses and learn about other marketing advice. The checklist became so popular with other instructor that I decided to turn it into 2 courses “Udemy Course Marketing: Increase Your Success” which is a starter course and “Udemy Marketing: Where to Promote Course Coupons”. Both courses offer instructors information on where to share their course coupons and how and have great reviews.
“Udemy Live” Road Trip To San Francisco
I took a road trip in late June to San Francisco from Idaho to attend Udemy Live and came back full of lifetime memories. I arrived into San Francisco on a Thursday evening a little earlier and picked up Dragoş Ștefănescu who came in from Romania. It was the first time meeting him in person but felt like we knew each other for years. We had a fun adventure getting lost on the streets of San Francisco on the way to pick up Jack Wilson at San Francisco International Airport and not knowing the GPS was set in biking mode. I had a great time sharing a room with friend and Udemy Fitness instructor Jack Wilson. Both Jack and I hung out the first night and stayed up late enjoying Idaho beer with popular TOGAF Udemy instructor Scott Duffy. If you are new to Udemy make sure you check out his Udemy SEO course and his course on protecting your own courses from piracy. Meeting new instructors like Ravinder Deol the “Bitcoin Expert” I think has helped me build relationships that go way beyond online course creation and Udemy. Plus I got to meet instructors I knew through Facebook and Skype for the first time in person. That included Brandon Hakin, Dave Espino, Diego Davila, Jeremy Deighan, Jasper Ribbers, Joe Parys, Laurel Papworth, Phil Ebiner “Video School Online” and several others. These are people that have a common goal in life and that is enjoying teaching others their passions so we can change the world and at the same time change our own lives.
Keeping Focused On The Road
Like a lot of Udemy instructors my revenue has dropped since Udemy’s price change back in April of this year. However I have been trying to remain positive by being creative by generating new revenue sources, creating new content while interviewing instructors and sharing their stories, answers instructor questions with “Ask Dennis“, grown my YouTube Channel to 660 subscribers, marketing my current courses and building my mailing list with ConvertKit. I had to completely shut down my website One Buck Courses which generated a lot of traffic and revenue as you would expect. I got the idea for the site after seeing several website that promoted Kindle books for a buck. I thought why not do the same with courses since we as instructors could discount down to one dollar. I already knew several instructors because I had also started a popular Facebook Group “The Online Course Promotion Group: Featuring Udemy, Skillshare and more!” with almost 4,000 members that allows instructors to promote their courses. That meant it was easy to build site that offered hundreds of courses for just a dollar. But I lost that revenue since after April the lowest price an instructor could discount their courses was $10. But still that’s not a bad price when you consider the value one gets from learning a new skill online. However it seemed like the bottom fell out and Udemy revenue came to what seemed like a halt. I have to fight off procrastination and even had to start a job which I quit because I couldn’t deal with people on the phone. But I have found a seasonal job to help cover the bills as I continue working on finding my path. I might not be rich at this point but I’m rich from the experiences I have experienced and the people I’ve met along the way. That is what I am most grateful for because we all work together to make our lives more rich.
The Revenue Streams
I will admit that there are other instructors that have earned more revenue on Udemy than I have by far. But I’m in it for the long haul while others have already left looking for the next shiny object. Here is a little background of where my revenue related to Udemy comes from.
There are a few places my revenue comes from and one of those is affiliate marketing through several websites, social media and email marketing. The biggest stream of revenue is the affiliate marketing through Online Course Coupons and Free Course Daily which I started after shutting down One Buck Courses due to Udemy’s price change. I am proud that the subscriber base for Free Course Daily is at 411 as of this post. I get a cut of the revenue paid as commission anytime someone comes to the sites through an affiliate link and then purchases a course or courses on on Udemy website. I typically promote using Facebook, Twitter or email marketing which has worked well. If you are an instructor reading this I invite you to consider submitting your course to the site as it sees over 5,000 visits a month. That means more potential students for your course and just another avenue to get your course promote. I have earned over $12,000 in income from affiliate revenue and thousands of courses were enrolled in through my websites.$270.40 comes from another affiliate account that I had promoting $2 buck courses with instructor Matt Bernstein. That amount doesn’t show up in the image below which is my main affiliate account.
The 2nd biggest revenue stream are the courses I have on Udemy which are 7 paid courses and 2 that are free. I know that creating more courses would be beneficial to that revenue stream. Health issues and my living situation has made it tough to record new courses. But I continue to focus on adding new content including new interviews with instructors. The paid courses have brought it just over $9,400 and I plan on releases a new course in October of 2016. It is a cooking course and something totally different than the courses I currently have on Udemy.
The next stream of revenue which has died down was Fiverr Gigs. Those gigs gave instructors an opportunity go get featured on the homepage of the site at a discounted price and other gigs that are still live give on the opportunity to get a copy of my first book along with 2 of my Udemy courses. Those gigs over the last few years have generated about $1,000 for me.
The last stream that focuses on Udemy is the revenue generated by my book “Udemy Life”. It’s not a lot but the book is a niche topic and only sells for $2.99 on Amazon. But it has received some great reviews and has brought in since I launched it earlier in 2016.
What I’ve Accomplished
- Published 9 Udemy courses
- Created Course Marketing Checklist
- Published 1 Skillshare course
- Promoted 100’s of Udemy courses
- Earned 1000’s of dollars with online businesses, online courses and books.
- Launched websites OnlineCourseCoupons.com, OneBuckCourses.com, TheCourseFactory.com and FreeCourseDaily.com.
- Published “Udemy Life” Book in 2016
- Started “AskDennis“
- Created Unofficial Udemy Instructor Resource Guide – NEW!
- Went on a road trip to Bend, OR, Crater Lake, Oregon Coast (first time) and Seattle
- Visited Bend, OR 3 times and met Facebook friends Barb Tomlin and Andy McCabe
- Visited Sun Valley, ID for Thanksgiving 2014
- Visited to Camas, WA and Madras Oregon and Painted Hills in Central Oregon.
- Went to Jackpot, NV and Balanced Rock
- Visited San Francisco to attend “Udemy Live”
- Stayed in Reno, NV at Silver Legacy Hotel on return from San Francisco
- Attended Duran Duran live in Seattle, saw The Cure and Tears for Fears in Boise
- Fiverr $980
- Udemy Affiliate Program $12,251
- Udemy Course Revenue $9,429
- Amazon Kindle Book Revenue $200 Estimate
Total Udemy Revenue $22,860 As Of September 2016
Get The Courses
Here’s a list of courses on Udemy. I hope you check them out and decided to become one of my students. Right now as of this post I have over 24,000 students in 155 countries around the world. I am grateful that so many have decided to enroll in my courses and hope that what I offer has inspired them or the skills they learned has made their lives better. That has always been my number one goal for teaching others.
Depending on the time that you read this post they may or may not be on sale on Udemy.com and I might be paid a commission by Udemy which does not effect the price you pay.
- Convertkit – Email Marketing For Online Entrepreneurs
- SumoMe: List Growth and Website Traffic With SumoMe Apps
- Webinar Success: Broadcast Live Webinar Like A Professional
- Kindle Book Marketing: Earn More Revenue With WordPress
- WordPress Marketing: Profits With Powerful WordPress Plugins
- MailChimp Free Email Marketing: List Building With MailChimp
- Udemy Course Marketing: Increase Your Success
- Udemy Marketing: Where To Promote Course Coupons
Find my courses at my website and enter code “DENNISJSMITHCOM” for a discount.
See You On The Revenue Road
Dennis J. Smith