Passive income is something many of us aim for. It’s often seen as a way to earn money without constant work, leading to financial independence.
But passive income isn’t as simple as it sounds. It’s not a myth, but it’s not easy either. You need to put in a lot of time or money to get any real results.
I decided to use the time route and here’s my experience with creating an online course, a common idea for earning passive income.
In July 2023, I launched my first Udemy course on SEO to earn some passive income.
My course, based on my 6 years of experience in SEO, covers how Google works and key website promotion strategies. It’s a concise 90-minute video course. Since I hadn’t built a personal brand and focused only on fieldwork, I didn’t have an audience to market my course.
I created the course on an iPhone 13, handling recording, editing, creating subtitles, and more by myself. It was my first time doing all of this.
I thought Udemy would send some organic traffic my way, but I only made about 5-7 sales from their platform, roughly one sale per month through their promotions.
I learned that getting a lot of reviews is crucial on Udemy to beat the competition. I offered the course for free on Reddit in exchange for feedback. However, many who took the free course didn’t open it, and some didn’t respond. It seems some people take free courses and then upload them on their sites for profit.
Still, I got useful feedback from those who watched it. Most were happy with the content, but some criticized the sound quality and lack of visuals in some videos.
My experience with Udemy is mixed. Udemy controls the pricing and takes a 37% cut of each sale. So, even if I set the course price at $50, they might sell it for $13, leaving me with as little as $5 per sale.
Overall, my view on this as a passive income source is more negative than positive. Success on Udemy seems to require a strong personal brand, and even then, the profit share is significant. Without a personal brand, starting on Udemy might not be very profitable.
I’ll keep working on the course until the end of the year, offering free access for feedback and making some sales myself. So far, I’ve reached 200 students, with over 190 joining through my own efforts, and made around 20 sales, with about 15 from my own efforts.
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As a full-stack SEO expert with rich experience, I have a comprehensive understanding of all aspects of search engine optimization. I have honed my skills through six years of practical experience, allowing me to provide clients with customized solutions that produce tangible results.