Online tutoring has been around for a while and has been a big moneymaker for many. It combines the money-making potential of tutoring with the joy of working from home.
You might be thinking that this is a side hustle only for teachers, but that is not true. All sorts of people can be tutors. If you have a skill to share, then you can tutor and with the current state of things, thanks to Coronavirus, now is a fantastic time to start online tutoring and earning from it.
A lot of parents have had the sudden need to do homeschooling thrown at them and while they may have been given printouts from schools or websites to use to help keep their children on track while Covid19 runs its course it is still going to be a struggle for many.
This is where YOU can come in as you not only help other parents in needs but you will be able to hopefully help yourself financially!
One such lady who has made a fulltime income from online tutoring (alongside travelling the world!) is Charlotte from Looking After Your Pennies and she’s got some top tips on how to earn the absolute most you can during the Coronvirus as an online tutor.
How to prepare
Preparation is important. Depending on the organisation you decide to work with (more on that later) you will have to do different things to prepare. But there are a few tasks to complete regardless of who you will be working with.
Organise your qualifications and credentials
When looking for a tutor, your future clients will want to know that you know what you are doing. You will need to prove that you have the skills and experience to deliver what you have promised.
You won’t necessarily need degrees or professional qualifications, but if you have them get them ready. If you have 10 years of experience teaching the clarinet, then think about what you can do to prove that.
Also, if you want to work with children and young adults, then be prepared that parents might want to see that you are DBS checked. Although, some people are less worried about this in an online context.
Make sure you have the right equipment
As you will be working online, you will need a few tools to help your tutoring sessions run smoothly. Naturally, a computer is a must. You might be able to make it work on a tablet but realistically you will need a laptop or a desktop.
If you are tutoring with a lot of written content, it might be worth investing in a graphics tablet so that you can write on the screen. However, if you have a tablet there are lots of apps that will enable you to link this up to your PC and use it in a similar way.
Finding who to work with
This is a critical part of the tutoring process. You need to decide what you want to deliver and who you want to deliver it to. The answers to these will guide you to the best platform.
What sort of tutoring do you want to do?
Alternatively, if you are offering skills to adults or more creative skills such as instrument lessons, then you would be better to advertise on a platform such as Fiverr or People Per Hour.
There is also the option for English language teaching through websites, such as VIPKid or DaDaABC. With these organisations, you will be provided with the resources and software to teach English to students in China.
Good fit clients
The most important part of finding your clients is making sure that you are a good fit for each other. To help with this, it is a good idea to have quick chat prior to starting your tuition.
Some websites will give you a platform for this, such as a preliminary interview or a free session. If you are freelancing, then might be something you want to work into your practice.
You need to be honest with yourself about whether you think the relationship between you and your tutee is going to work. It is the sign of a strong tutor to know when to pass a client on to someone else.
Working with your tutees
This is where the magic happens, and you start earning money. Therefore, it is a crucial part to get just right.
Write a good advert
Attracting tutees to you is going to be the most difficult part of your new side hustle. There are lots of tutors out there so why should they work with you?
Whatever platform you are working on, you need to write a good advert. Make sure that it includes details of your knowledge and experience, as well as letting some of your personality shine through.
If you have tutored in the past, talk about some of your success stories (don’t reveal the personal details). Make them realise that they must work with you to get the results they want.
You are not going to be able to sustain the role of an online tutor if you are constantly pretending to someone you’re not. Plus, your tutees will struggle to relate to you if you do.
All great teachers are labelled this way because of their ability to form fantastic working relationships with their students. These same relationships must exist when tutoring too.
Start your sessions with conversations about how your day has been and ask them about theirs. Find common interests and allow those to be part of the session. Just make sure that these discussions don’t take over the time you have.
Once you have attracted people to you, it is time to make sure they stick around and continue to keep paying you.
Make a plan
In one of your early sessions with your tutees, work with them to make an action plan. Let them contribute by telling you what they hope to achieve by working with you.
Once you have the plan in place, you can add some dates to it. This will help your tutee see how long they can expect to be working with you and helps them stick around for longer.
Schedule in appointments
At the end of each session, you should always schedule in the next appointment. Even if you say that it can be changed later, make sure you have the next appointment on the calendar.
Depending on the platform, you might be able to ask for payment of a series of sessions in advance. This way you will have your clients booked in for a few weeks and the money in your hand.
With all learning, it can be hard to manage people’s expectations. Typically, people think they are going to be better at something than they are. This can lead to frustration and dissatisfaction if not managed appropriately.
Keep good records
The best way to prove to your tutees that they have made great progress is to keep good records. If you can show them their skill level at the start of your sessions compared to where they are now, then that will be proof enough of your abilities.
How you keep these records is up to you. You might agree with your client that you are going to record part or all of your sessions. Or you could just keep notes and records yourself.
Whatever you decide is best, you must share these with your client and keep them private from others.
Always deliver your best
There is that old saying “under sell and over-deliver” and it works in the tutoring world too. When arranging your sessions, don’t make any promises about what you can achieve before you have spent some time with your tutees.
Once you understand their abilities, then you can set targets that are stretching but achievable. Make sure that you give praise regularly for progress towards these goals because that will reflect on your skills as a tutor too.
Alongside this, it does not hurt to offer extra services as part of your package. Could you provide additional resources to help them learn in their own time? Or occasionally allow the session to overrun a little if you are close to mastering a new skill?
Remember people want your skills
It is easy to think that no one wants our skills or that we don’t have any in the first place. But this is not true. We all have skills and experiences that we can transfer, and people are willing to pay for that.
It’s time to set yourself up as an expert in your field and share your knowledge with the world. All in exchange for cash, of course!