When you’re running a business, you want to make a profit. Ideally, this means you should earn more than you spend creating the product or service. For physical products, you take the price of your components and tag on a percentage. You should include your labor costs too, though they can be hard to gauge. Even professionals like doctors and lawyers are unclear about the price of their skills. It’s harder for eLearning developers. After all, how do you bill programming time? Here are 5 suggestions to determine the ideal price tag for your online training certification course.
5 Secrets To Price Your Online Certification Course
1. Look Around
What’s the cost of similar online training certification courses? Start with a broad swathe. A quick Google search will provide a long list of your competitors. Compile their prices and look at the range. Identify the highest, lowest, and most common price. This gives you a general idea. Now review more carefully to see which online training certification courses you like and why. Maybe they’re well designed, have good technique, or cover the topics you consider relevant. You’d be happy being associated with those products, so similar pricing appeals to you. If you have more than one online training certification course on this shortlist, you could take a shortcut.
You could find the average of their prices and slap it on your product. Or you could mimic the price of your favorite brand from that list. You might also just pick the highest and lowest price points, then position yourself right in the middle. It’s a common tactic in stores. They stock items that are super expensive and super cheap. Then they pick the item with the best profit margin and ‘price it between the two.’ Customers buy it, thinking it’s a smart median choice – not too cheap, not too pricey. They don’t realize it offers the vendor a larger profit than the other two extremes. Or that it was deliberate buyer bait.
2. Try The Flex Pricing Approach
The beauty of pre-orders and teaser campaigns is they give you free market research. In the run-up to launch, try out different prices to find the best fit. It’s a tactic commonly used in pop concerts. They sell tickets in waves, with a different price tag for every wave and limited tickets available. This creates a sense of urgency, because buyers want a ticket before the price goes up. But for future reference, it shows you which price your online learners are most comfortable paying. Clearly state the duration of each wave so buyers don’t feel cheated.
There’s also a more complicated solution that puts the buyer in charge of the price tag. In this scenario, you ask your customers to pay ‘whatever they’re comfortable with’ and monitor their preferences. This risks making a loss, so instead of offering the actual product, you could run a survey. Ask what they’d be willing to pay for such-and-such an eLearning certification course. You could offer a synopsis, an outline, table of contents, and maybe even a sample chapter. It gives you a realistic idea of your target market’s thought process. Just remember, you shouldn’t always follow a flex pricing model. It’s just a research tool to help you find the ideal price point.
3. Do The Math
As a tangent of the test above, watch to see when sales freeze over. Play with the price, raising and dropping it to see when it stalls. When it goes too low, customers start to doubt its value, so they stop buying. When it gets too high, they might feel ‘fleeced’ and let the opportunity go. You may also realize that selling more online training modules or courses at a lower price (e.g. 3 certification modules at $50 each) gives better returns. Pre-orders and promo codes will show you the demand for your online training certification course. Use them to run some calculations and see what works best.
4. Industry Specifics
Bear in mind that online training certification courses generally appeal to professionals who are looking to upskill and/or land a promotion. They’re investing in the online training certification course because they know it will help advance their careers. This means that the industry, pay scale, and other sector-specific factors are at play. For example, the healthcare sector generally pays better than retail. Then again, it all depends on the target audience’s rank, experience, and position.
5. Consider All Costs Realistically
There are two problematic approaches to pricing online training certification courses. The first is to value your time and effort so high that you price yourself out of the market. The second is undervaluing yourself to the point that you can’t turn a profit. You must be able to consider all the costs you incurred while creating the online training certification course, including software, time, and human resources. Be realistic. It’s true, you may have spent countless hours brainstorming topics and researching the subject matter. But that doesn’t mean you should put an exorbitant price tag on your online training certification course.
Deciding on the cost of your online training certification course is a challenge. This difficulty stretches across all forms of intellectual property. Some people just slap on an arbitrary figure while others use a trial-and-error approach. Explore the market to see what your peers and rivals are charging. Play around with promos, pre-orders, and A/B testing. Run pre-launch surveys to get some idea of what your prospects are willing to pay. Dip a toe into the water to gauge demand, then use it to price your supply. Always gather effective metrics, and don’t forget to analyze them. They’ll help you price future products.
Now that you’ve found the right price, it’s time to market your course. Publish an article on eLearning Industry to reach hundreds of thousands of readers and build the buzz for your certification course. Not to mention, establish yourself as an expert in your niche and enhance your online presence.