How to Price Your First Online Course

November 16, 2019

How to Price Your First Online Course

As a course instructor, generating dependable and recurring revenue by creating and selling online courses is a lucrative business opportunity.

However, to monetize your online course, you need to first settle on the right pricing model. While some course instructors choose to sell their courses for a few dollars, others sell them for a few hundred (or even a few thousand!) dollars.

In this article, we’ll explain how you can find the right price point for your first online course. Before we begin, let’s take a look at the fundamental tiers of online course pricing.

3 Fundamental Tiers of Online Course Pricing


There are three basic tiers of online course pricing: free, baseline pricing, and premium pricing.


If you give away your online course for free, it’s important that you do it the right way. When most people think of free stuff, words like “cheap” or “low value” come to mind. By setting a price tag to your online course, you’re automatically presenting it as a valuable product.

Think of it this way: when people invest in a product or service (such as an online course or training program), they make more effort to follow through with it. They’re also more likely to be engaged with the course content and perform better in quizzes and assignments. This is why people who purchase a course are more likely to complete it as compared to those who sign up for free courses.

Once you attach a monetary value to your offering, your target customers will associate your course with how much value they can expect to get by completing it. Otherwise, a free course tells them that it’s probably not worth signing up for.

The right way to offer free content to your audience is by giving away sneak peeks to your course videos or by publishing articles about the topics you’ll cover in detail throughout the course.

Baseline Pricing

You need to make sure that the majority of your target students (1) can afford your product and (2) see the value proposition.

A great way to position your online course in front of a wider audience is by setting your price level at an appropriate baseline (around $100). This is especially great for first-time course creators.

The goal is to settle on a price point that gets you a decent number of course registrations while preserving the perceived value of your online course. Depending on how long your course is and the topics you cover, your baseline price might be slightly lower or slightly higher.

Premium Pricing

If you think that your course content has the potential to bring in top dollar, you might consider setting a higher price point. As a result, you’ll be able to create a sense of value around your online course while boosting student engagement. This will also make it easier to achieve your revenue goals without requiring as many registrations.

That said, it’s worth noting that higher course prices will result in fewer subscriptions. Depending on how your course is structured and the added value you provide (such as one-on-one coaching sessions), this might work to your favor.

Once you’ve settled on a pricing tier, you can jump right into the pricing process.

Pricing Your First Online Course

Pricing Your First Online Course

Here are a few factors to consider when setting a price tag for your first online course:

#1: Decide How Much You Want to Earn

The first thing you need to do is think about your income objectives. Here are some questions to ask yourself:

  1. How much do you expect to make selling your online course?
  2. Are you looking to make this a primary source of your income?
  3. Or do you just want an additional revenue stream to support your finances?

For example, let’s say you want to make $6,000 from your online course business.

  • If you decide to charge $100 for each course, you’ll need to sell to 60 people to reach your income goal.
  • Similarly, if you charge $200 for your online course, you’ll have to sell to 30 people to make $6,000.
  • And if you choose to price your course at $600, selling to only 10 people will get you to your target number.

Keeping this example in mind will help you understand how many sales you’ll have to make to achieve your target income goal and make it easier to set a price.

Alternatively, you can think of how many people would be willing to purchase your online course. For instance, if you think you can get a 2% conversion rate from your email list then that can also help you decide on a price for your course.

This way, if you send emails to 1,000 people, and 20 people express interest in purchasing your course, you’ll have to sell your online course at a minimum price of $300 to reach your income goal.

#2: Create Multiple Forms of Content

Once you’ve decided on the price tag for your online course, you need to make sure that you offer equal value to your customers. If you want to charge a higher price, you should also deliver more value through your offering.

You can increase the value of your courses either by offering bonus content or improving content quality. Here are a few suggestions worth considering:

  • Create a content upgrade. You can use editable workbooks or other downloadable resources as a lead magnet that your students can use to track their progress throughout the course duration.
  • Host live Q&As. If your online course is delivered to a live audience (which means everyone is attending at the same time), hosting live Q&As can help you increase your course value. You can schedule a few sessions throughout your classes and answer student questions. This way you’ll be able to increase the value of your course by several hundred dollars based on how many Q&A sessions you host.
  • Create a community. You can create a community for your students where they can communicate with each other and share ideas. The easiest way to do this is by setting up a community on Slack or creating a Facebook group. You’ll be able to decide how you’ll be monitoring your community. Alternatively, some WordPress learning management systems come with community features built-in.

#3: Focus on the Benefits

Another important factor to consider is the value your customers will get by paying for your online course. People get PDFs, webinars, and downloadable resources from almost every course they purchase. Your goal is to help them understand how your product will solve their problem or improve their life.

This is where you need to look at your online course from the customer’s perspective. Identify the main reasons why someone would (or rather, should) take your course. For instance, it might be to change their career path or to learn new skills. Ask yourself: what is their motive behind the purchase and how can your online course help them achieve their goal?

If you present your course as an investment, it will tell your customers that they’ll be able to improve their lives or achieve professional goals. Similarly, positioning your product as a solution will help students understand how your course will help them solve their pain points. You need to assure your audience that your online course will enable them to turn their current situation into a more favorable one.

#4: Add Pricing Tiers

Creating pricing tiers is a great way to make your course affordable for a larger chunk of your target market. In addition to this, it also gives students the option to only pay for the content they want.

The first step in creating your pricing tiers is to decide which content will be offered as bonus content. Decide which will be of the most value to your customers and give you the highest ROI. Next, evaluate and select an appropriate price for each piece of bonus content. Once you’ve done this, you’re ready to create your pricing tiers.

Here’s an example to walk you through three different pricing tiers:

  • The first tier should comprise of your basic online course and any additional PDF resources (a small version of bonus content). This tier will be offered at a lower price point e.g. $100.
  • For the second tier, you can bundle up one or two more premium bonuses. These could include a group coaching session, making this tier worth $100 more. You’d sell this offer for $200.
  • In the third tier, you can package the rest of the content you left out in the first two tiers such as a one-on-one coaching session. This will be your priciest tier, around $300.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How do I price my first online course?

A: Pricing your first online course can be a challenging task. To determine the right price for your course, consider factors such as your course topic, the value it provides, and the current market rates for similar courses. You can also use online course pricing calculators or seek guidance from experienced course creators to help you set a competitive price.

Q: What are some pricing strategies for online courses?

A: There are several pricing strategies you can use for your online course. Some common strategies include offering a lower introductory price, creating different price points for different course features or levels, providing bundle offers, or offering a higher price for a more comprehensive course. Experimenting with different pricing strategies can help you find what works best for your target audience.

Q: Should I price my online course high or low?

A: The pricing of your online course depends on various factors, including the value it provides, the target audience, and the competition in the market. Pricing your course too low may undermine its perceived value, while pricing it too high may hinder its sales. It is important to strike a balance and consider factors like the length of the course, the expertise you offer, and the demand for your topic to determine the optimal price for your online course.

Q: How can I sell my online course at a higher price point?

A: Selling your online course at a higher price point requires demonstrating the unique value and benefits it offers. Presenting your course as a premium offering, showcasing testimonials and success stories from previous students, and including additional resources and support can justify a higher price to potential buyers. It is important to effectively communicate the value they will receive and how it will positively impact their learning experience.

Q: What are some tips on how to price my online course?

A: Here are some tips to help you price your online course effectively: – Research the market rates for similar courses – Identify the unique value your course provides – Consider the length and content of your course – Seek feedback from your target audience – Experiment with different pricing strategies

Q: How do I calculate the price of my online course?

A: To calculate the price of your online course, you can consider various factors such as the time and effort you put into creating the course, the cost of any additional resources or support you offer, and the value it provides to students. Additionally, you can research the market rates for similar courses and use online course pricing calculators to help you determine a reasonable price.

Q: What is the best way to price my online course?

A: The best way to price your online course is by conducting market research, understanding your target audience’s willingness to pay, and considering the value and benefits your course offers. You can use different pricing strategies, like offering tiered pricing or creating bundle offers, to cater to different customer segments. It’s essential to strike a balance between the perceived value of your course and the expectations of your target audience.

Q: How do I increase the price of my online course without discouraging potential buyers?

A: Increasing the price of your online course can be done gradually and strategically. Instead of a sudden price hike, you can introduce limited-time promotions or offer additional bonuses to justify the higher price. Communicate the added value and improvements you’ve made to the course, and focus on attracting customers who appreciate the increased value rather than discouraging potential buyers.

Q: How can I choose the right price for my online course?

A: Choosing the right price for your online course requires careful consideration of market rates, competition, and the value your course provides. Conduct market research, seek feedback from your target audience, and evaluate the uniqueness and expertise of your course topic to determine an appropriate price that reflects the value you offer.

Q: What should I do if I priced my online course too low?

A: If you find that you have priced your online course too low, you can consider offering limited-time promotions or bundling the course with additional resources or support to increase the perceived value. You can also gradually increase the price over time as you add more content and improvements to the course, ensuring that existing students still perceive the value they received at the lower price.


To build a successful online course, you need to identify the right price point for your product offering that matches the value it delivers to your customers. Whether you decide to sell your first online course for a few hundred dollars or start out at a lower price point, you’ll be well on your way to generating recurring revenue.

Do you have any pricing tips of your own that you’d like to share with other course creators? Let us know by commenting below!


How to Price Your First Online Course was last modified: by