Thinking about tutoring not sure where to start? Or even how to start? This guide covers the basics of getting online tutoring jobs. Everything from going with a tutoring platform, to setting up your own web presence and attracting your own students.
- Are you looking for a part-time job that can flex around your needs?
- Are you looking for a bit of extra cash for the holidays?
- Do you want to save for a holiday or a new car?
If the answer to any of these questions is ‘Yes’- an online tutoring job could be perfect for you!
Join me as I show you how to get set up as an online tutor, and the best way to promote your services.
Why would you get an online tutoring job?
- You can work anywhere in the world! All you need is a computer or laptop.
- Work hours around your needs, whether that is a full-time job, studying or childcare.
- Earn between $30 to $60 an hour, without spending time or money on traveling.
- Gain valuable teaching experience to help you in your future career.
- Help other people grow their knowledge and forge a career path of their own.
Is online tutoring right for you?
Almost anyone can become an online tutor. The job is a perfect match for:
- Students: Increase your knowledge of your chosen area of study and gain vital experience that you can add to your resume.
- Teachers: Whether you teach elementary or high school, the teaching knowledge you have will make you the perfect online tutor.
- Teenagers: You’re never too young to tutor others! If you’re looking for a part-time job to supplement your studies, why not consider online tutoring?
- Stay at home parents: Work at home around childcare hours, making this the ideal job if you look after a baby or young children.
Can I get an online tutoring job with no degree?
Many people think that you need to be educated to a degree level to be a tutor, but this isn’t true – most of the time.
You should have knowledge and experience in the subject area you’re tutoring, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that you need a degree.
The main thing is that you have a passion for learning and are friendly, patient and professional.
Note: Tutoring platforms are the exception to this rule. If you sign up to a tutoring platform, they may ask for proof that you have a degree or are working towards a degree to be accepted as a tutor.
If this is the case, don’t worry as there are still lots of ways you can get started as a tutor without relying on a tutor platform or without a degree.
Where can I find online tutoring jobs?
So you’ve decided that you want to earn some money as an online tutor. That’s great!
You may start by letting friends and family know about your tutoring services. Word of mouth recommendations are great when you’re starting out, but if you want to grow your tutoring business, you’ll need to cast your net a little bit wider.
There are a couple of different places you can advertise for online tutoring jobs. Here I will list five ways you can find prospective students.
1. Freelancing sites
Freelancing sites are a fantastic choice if you do not have your own website as it’s free to set up a profile on most sites.
There are freelance sites that specialise in tutoring like Chegg and Varsity Tutors, as well as more general sites like Freelancer and People Per Hour which offer tutoring alongside other services like web development and content writing.
Freelance sites work in different ways. Some platforms allow you to ‘bid’ for work and other sites encourage students to come directly to you if they like your profile.
Some freelancing sites ask for evidence of accreditations when you register so if you do not have a qualification in what you want to tutor in it may not be the right choice for you.
Fees for freelancing sites vary. Some sites take a commission from the work you carry out, while with others you need to purchase credits to bid for work.
Although it’s generally easy to get work on freelancing sites and as customers pay in advance and you’ll be guaranteed payment; the pay from these sites can be low in comparison to what you would get if students came directly to you.
As an example, Chegg pays tutors $10-20 for each hour of work.
Pros and cons: The appeal of a freelance platform is high because of the ease of entry. But that also means it’s easy for everyone. Which means you’ll be competing with tons of tutors and find it hard to attract students. Also, after paying platform fees anywhere between 25-60%, you don’t make very much.
Saying that though, if you just want to get started, this is probably the quickest place. Take your first action, and the momentum will keep you going!
2. Social media
The chances are that you already have at least one social media account. Why not utilise this to get some business?
Social media can be a good option for attracting potential students as so many people use it, plus it’s free to set up an account.
The social media platform you use will depend on who you want to target. For example, if you’re keen to target the parents of elementary school children, setting up a Facebook page or joining a handful of parenting groups, or your local area groups, or groups discussing your subject would be a good strategy for you to follow.
If you tutor working professionals, regularly posting on LinkedIn, both on your newsfeed and in relevant groups, will ensure that you’re reaching out to the right people. 91% of marketing executives cite LinkedIn as the best social media network to find quality content relevant to them.
Nextdoor, Care and Craigslist are also good options if you’re looking to tutor in your local area. Read this post for more on advertising your tutoring business.
You do need to put the work in to be seen on social media, but if you’re willing to do this, it’s an excellent strategy for growing your part-time business.
Pros and cons: Social media done right will bring you targeted traffic. Just remember to keep adding value for free alongside promoting your services. No one wants a person who is constantly selling and only looking out for their own benefit.
Also keep in mind that content keeps growing on social media and attention spans are very short. So you’ll have to develop a consistent disciplined approach to adding value and promoting your services. Choose a few specific strategies and keep at it.
3. Online discussion forums
Online discussion forums like Reddit and Quora are a fantastic way of promoting your services. Not only are they free to register, but these websites rank highly in the search engines, making people more likely to find out about you and the services you provide.
You need to provide value on these forums by answering people’s questions and participating in discussions around the particular area you tutor in. Don’t just drop a link promoting your services and run away, as you’ll get a lot of negative feedback and potentially be marked as a spammer!
Set up an alert on Quora or Google Alerts to be notified whenever new questions pertinent to your subjects come up. Answering 2-5 questions every day will quickly build up your footprint on these sites and attract a steady flow of traffic to your profile on these sites, or to your website.
After a short while, you’ll start to be seen as a voice of authority and people will come to you to ask you more about the services you provide.
Pros and cons: These kinds of platforms are conversational, and unless you’re a paid advertiser, self promotion won’t get you far. Answering questions and contributing value is a long game strategy and keeps building on itself. It’s great over the long term, but you may not see results for the first few months.
4. Online directories
You can submit your details to online tutoring directories, as well as local directories promoting the area you live and work in. People search the directory to find tutors, and they will get in touch if they are interested in working with you.
Choose the directories you want carefully. Some charge for inclusion and others don’t rank very well in the search engines.
You can also promote your tutoring services for free on classified sites like Craigslist.
Pros and cons: Usage of online directories is dwindling. And nowadays you would only list there for a link back to your website if anything.
A classified website like Craigslist can give you results, however be wary of the quality of enquiries you get from there. Would you look for a tutor on Craigslist? People do, and you might pick up a client or two with a regular posting strategy.
Creating a website may sound like a lot of hard work, especially if you’re only looking to tutor part-time or to supplement your existing career, but it’s the most effective way of having a conversation with potential students.
Plus the benefit of having your own website over using freelancing sites is that 100% of the money you earn is yours!
Think of a website as your ‘shop window’ where you promote the services you provide and tell your prospective customers more about you and why you would be an excellent match for them.
You can even set up a blog where you write about your area of expertise, promoting yourself as a voice of authority and helping your website rank highly in the search engines!
Pros and cons: There is a bit of a learning curve involved with setting up your own website. But it’s entirely worth your time, if you imagine all of the outreach work you do posting and contributing in other places, pointing back to your website.
Over time you’ll get a consistent flow of traffic back to your site, which you control, and you get to keep 100% of the fees you charge.
In summary, becoming an online tutor is a great way to earn extra money and work hours that suit you.
Attracting students may sound like a lot of hard work, but it’s not as hard as it sounds. Just remember to do only a few things, and keep at it consistently.
The biggest mistake I see tutors do is try a whole bunch of promotion methods, but not sticking with any over the long term.
Have you come across any other methods that you find interesting? Let me know in the comments 🙂