I’ve been blogging for over 10 years and in that time period, I’ve taken more than my share of blogging courses spending hundreds of dollars. Why? Because if you want to be a successful entrepreneur you have to be open to constant learning, the world wide web is ever changing so you have to keep up with what your potential customers are into, and lastly, I just love to learn. Over the years I’ve come across some great courses but I’ve also run into some really bad courses. Courses that just didn’t deliver what it promised to deliver.
So today I'm sharing my honest opinion on how to choose online courses that are worth your time and money and how to choose a course that you'll actually benefit from.
How to Choose the Right Courses for Your Blog Business
Here are some questions to ask yourself before you buy a course:
Do I need this course right now in my blogging stage?
If you are just starting out and are still setting up your blog, you may not need a course on affiliate marketing right now.
Don’t get fooled by the super sales. 9 times out of 10 the sale will be back on by the time you’re actually ready for the course.
Can I afford this course right now?
I think of courses as an investment into the future of my business. Every skill I learn should be able to make me money. But, the best courses tend to cost the most so I have to make a choice between breaking the bank to invest or save up for the course.
I suggest you save up for the course unless it’s something you really need right now and the skill you learn will help you make money with your blog.
Tip: Courses tend run between $97 and $997. Some courses run as much as $2,000 and are usually broken up into monthly payments. I’ve found that courses that cost $97 and less are not always that great and I’ve always needed to take another course on the same topic to get what I need. You may find some gems, but make sure you view the outline of the course before purchasing.
Do I have time to do the course right now?
I have to admit, I have serious “shiny object” syndrome. I have a tendency to buy stuff I don’t need at the moment, telling myself that I will get to it later. Turns out that I pile up a bunch of tools and courses and never get to any of it.
This is not a good habit and I don’t suggest you do this at all. You’ll end up wasting a lot of money. When you buy a course you’ve got to make the effort to put time and energy into applying the info.
Ok, so you’ve passed the first two checkpoints. You need the course and you can afford it. Let’s move on to next few checkpoints.
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How do you know if a course is a good investment?
The course teaches you the skills/knowledge you need RIGHT NOW in your business
The course is taught by a person who is an expert or at least experience and can show proof of that experience.
I took a VA course from a woman who had one successful high paying client. Her whole course was based on her experience with that one client. The basic information was good but as a VA the number one challenge is getting clients and the course didn’t address it outside of telling me to network.
Ok, I guess…...but the price point called for more information on this issue.
The course is a good investment! Great…...next checkpoint
What’s in the Curriculum?
In addition to reviewing the course outline, take a look at the reviews. Reading reviews can give you an idea of what’s included because most people say if the course addresses a particular pain point. If you are on a site like Udemy you can preview some of the lessons to see what type of lessons are in the course.
You can preview some of the lessons on other platforms if the teacher of the course allows it. Point is, do a little investigating.
Tip: Courses that have evergreen content are the best! This means that as the industry grows the course creator keeps adding new content to the course without you having to pay for another course. If you find one of these that are relevant to your business, I suggest you purchase because these are a gem.
What format is the course taught in?
Is it video, downloadable workbook, just print. Make sure the course is in a format that you can understand and easily relate too. For instance, if you are a visual learner then a course that is mostly do well for you.
Tip: I’ve found that no matter the format, I do best with courses that have a companion workbook or at least have printables.
Back to those review.....
Although a person’s experience with a course can be subjective, I do look at reviews for a course to get a good idea of what the course teaches and if it delivers what it says it will deliver.
I also look at reviews about customer service and the course creator. If I find that there are a lot of complaints about bad customer service, I stay away from that course.
Tip: You can find reviews with a quick google search, but I usually find the best reviews in Facebook groups. Say you are in an FB group for women who blog, there is a good chance that there are a few women in that group who have taken or know someone that has taken the course you are looking into.
Check out the refund policy
Does the course have a money back guarantee? How long do you get to request a refund? There have been times that I had to request a refund for various reasons and I haven’t had the best experience with every company. Courses that have a fuss-free money back guarantee are a better choice. You don’t want to make a habit of requesting a refund but it’s good to know you can if anything goes wrong.
Where can you find info if you need it?
Can you contact the course creator if you have major issues or does the course creator at least have a good customer service team?
Does the course have a dedicated Facebook group?
I love when a course has a FB group because you get to interact with other students and get most of your questions answered. You also get inspired by the work that they do.
Tip: Don't ever buy the first course you come across. Shop around. There is always more than one course for any particular subject. Go with the teacher or group that fits your needs best.
The most important thing to remember is to vet every course you come across. Try to ignore the hype and only buy what you need at the moment.
Buy what will help you grow your business now and in the future.
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Until next time,
Live in gratitude. Live in love.
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