Udemy is becoming quite the player in the online education market space. They have come a long way in a very short amount of time. I have had courses on there for quite a while and I also consulted with them a little bit (they got out of me as much as they could for free).
For some it can seem like an amazing solution and to some it may seem like a rip off. I think depending on where you are at with resources Udemy can be amazing for you. I wanted to make a post about my experiences with it.
Before we jump into Udemy specifics lets talk about what it takes to sell a info product.
- A product (duh).
- Customer service.
- A place to host the content.
- Landing pages and checkout pages.
- Merchant processing.
- Affiliate Program.
Here is a little more in-depth form my experience
Do it yourself.
The most profitable one would be to do all of this yourself. Someone would have to answer customer inquiries, administrate your server, setup your members area and the whole username/password user level system etc etc, build/optimize landing pages, get your own merchant accounts and run your own affiliate program. This option gives you the flexibility on every front BUT as it becomes more successful be ready to hire several people. In my case when my original ShoeMoney System went on sale we went from ZERO to 700 units per day. I hired 6 customer service people from the local unemployment agency just to answer the phone and give refunds. I hired a full time affiliate manager. My server guy and I stayed up all night to build a astrix voice over ip system. O ya and I ordered 10 voip phones overnighted. I did have some merchant processing but it was limited to only 180k per month. We were processing that every 2 days. Craziest part tho was I wasn’t really sure if we were even making money. Took about 2 months later to see that we did make money after all. But sad end to that story is that we lost our merchanting and canned it. But you have full control. In most cases when you do it all yourself you DO NOT clawback against affiliates. If a refund is made its on you and not the affiliate.
Hyrbid yourself + Clickbank or JVZOO:
The next way to do it is to use something like JVZOO or Clickbank. You still have to host your own content and landing pages but they take care of the affiliate program for you and also merchanting. For this service they take 7.5% of the price PLUS $1 per sale. This is before anything goes out to affiliates. Clickbank affiliate program is pretty flexible. Allows you to give affiliates 25% to 75% of the sale price.
Ok now lets get to the Udemy way:
Udemy does everything for you. But they take a heafty 30% of the price tag. 15% for people who use your coupon codes. Affiliates get a flat 50% of the price AFTER Udemy takes their cut.
But is it that bad?
Price wise Its a GREAT DEAL.
- You get 70% from sales that Udemy gets for you. Sound hefty? QUIT WHINING this is just free money for you.
- You get 85% from sales that you make. They determine this from sales that come from a code.
- You get 35% of the sales made by affiliates.
Now instead of looking at all the things they do for you lets just look at what you do. You upload content… promote it on your site and thats it. Sometimes you answer questions from students but not too much. No customer service to worry about, no affiliate management, no merchant processing issues, and best of all no server issues.
But here is what I don’t like about it. You may or may not feel the same way.
You have no way to email your buyers. This pisses me off cause when I update a course or something or even when I put out something new I can’t blast out and let my users know. This is B.S. cause I have a right to email them as they have done a commercial transaction with me.
With that said your users can follow you and you can message them on Udemy… although not sure how they would like me “messaging 5,000” people at once. Its still dependent on them getting notifications from Udemy.
YOU ARE BUILDING THEIR BUSINESS. just keep that in mind. I have sent them thousands of buyers of my products. These are all users they horde and will spam them promoting new products… of which they earn 30% of the money that they make.
Most annoying thing about it is the messaging system. I miss a TON of questions from my students because there is soooo much spam from other “instructors” asking you to promote their stuff. But I digress.
So really in the end, even after my complaints, I would advise to probably 99.9% of the people out their who want to put a product online to use Udemy. Would I use it for new products? Nope.. but I will use it for older ones that I don’t want to maintain the web hosting and all that for.
The real deal is that this platform is really just what it says its for, teachers to create courses and sell them to students. And they make it very very easy.