Online Courses Affiliate Programs
Looking to enter the online course market? There are many ways to approach this initiative but some of the most popular include creating online courses, reselling online courses, and online course affiliates.
Creating your online courses requires a lot of effort, from niche research and selection to deciding on the platform and creating and market the courses.
This may not necessarily be the best route for everyone looking to enter this space. Another option is buying courses to resell and a third option is becoming an online course affiliate.
With the exponential growth of the eLearning industry, various platforms are now leveraging affiliate programs to bring in more sales.
You may be wondering what affiliate marketing is. Let’s take a look at the general concept of affiliate marketing and its implications in the online learning space.
Ever helped promote someone’s business or product intentionally or unintentionally? What if you could earn some money from that referral and possibly put some extra effort into it especially if you’re passionate about that product.
That’s the general concept of affiliate marketing. To put it simply, affiliate marketing enables individuals and in some cases businesses to earn commission based on visits to a product page or purchases of the product, facilitated by their referrals.
The individual or business referring others to the affiliate product, in this case, can be referred to as an “affiliate”.
They do not own any aspects of the product but decide to promote the product in hopes of making some returns for their effort.
Bear in mind the affiliate program owes nothing to the individual if their efforts do not result in any visits or sales of the affiliate product.
Implications Of Affiliate Marketing In Online Learning
Creating an online course comes with its milestones but selling getting sales of your courses is the most challenging aspect to most content creators.
You wouldn’t want to invest your money into creating the best course from your viewpoint, without anyone seeing the course to further transition into a purchase.
This is why most modern marketplace learning management systems as well as SaaS and once-off learning management systems now come with affiliate functionality already built into them or as an extension.
Affiliate marketing in the online course space means that others who are passionate enough about your online course can now help you market them for commission on sales made.
It works the same way as hiring someone to promote your offline product for you but you only pay them an agreed-upon commission on each customer they bring to your business.
This is a win-win situation for both parties considering the level of competition in the online course space in recent years.
The content creator can now employ the use of affiliates to reach audiences they normally wouldn’t have been able to reach and increase sales.
Affiliates have many options available to choose from, so both, the quality of the course as well as the commission rate must remain attractive to potential affiliate marketers.
What You Should Look For In A Good Affiliate Program
Desired By Target Audience
There are hundreds of thousands of courses online but that doesn’t necessarily mean your target audience needs all those courses.
Before deciding on a course, you need to understand the market or audience you’ll be selling to, their needs and requirements, and the best avenue to reach them.
If you intend to sell on your blog or website, it is necessary to ensure that your target audience is willing to pay for a particular course.
This can be done by conducting a survey, encouraging feedback from your audience on a post about this type of course, or even blasting out emails to solicit short responses to ascertain the interest of your target audience.
If social media is your preferred mode of reaching your target market, it is necessary to research the challenges your target audience is facing and the best solution for these problems.
You may say this is almost like building a business, which is correct. Market research is necessary for the success of any endeavor.
There is ever-growing competition in the field of online learning and understanding your market is key to the success of any online course.
Understanding the commission rate provided by the affiliate program or in some cases, a specific product is key.
Selecting a product with a high commission level doesn’t necessarily mean you can more money by selling this product.
You need to understand whether this product sells easily before deciding to market this product.
Bear in mind that a course with a lower commission rate may seem unattractive but in the long run, maybe easier to sell.
Identify your strengths and whether you’re capable of selling more of the high commission online course before deciding on it.
If you’re able to do so, that returns will be higher but if you’re unable to sell more of the high commission course, your best option would be to leverage the low commission online course if you’ll be able to sell more of it.
Quality Of The Course
Selling can be hard but even more so when the product you’re marketing is inferior. With your competitors chasing buyers with the same products, it is necessary to ensure the quality of your selected product.
For the best results, it needs to be a product you have tried and passionately believe in its quality, to successfully convince potential customers to buy.
If you’re unable to try the course, you can check user reviews and any other metrics to gain a better understanding of the quality of the course.
Affiliate Tracking Cookie Length
Another factor to consider is how long the affiliate tracking cookie lasts. Affiliate cookies are simply files that are created and stored in a browser when someone clicks an affiliate link.
These cookies are necessary as they make it possible to track affiliate links. Once potential customers click your affiliate link for a product, they’re redirected to the product link and the cookie is installed in their browsers.
This cookie is what will enable the program owner to track where a purchase came from. It is, therefore, necessary to determine how long this cookie will track the potential customer should they want to register for the course at a later day.
Some programs provide cookies that can last up to 90 days, while others are far less. This means if the potential customer should purchase the course within that timeframe, the affiliate platform can track who referred the customer.
How Long Does It Take To Get Approved As An Affiliate
Most affiliate programs take anywhere from instant to 1 to 7 working days. Platforms like Amazon can get you running right away but on a 3 months trial.
For online course affiliate programs, most usually approve your applications within 1 to 5 business days.
Online Course Affiliate Programs
First on our list is the world’s most popular online course marketplace’s affiliate program. Udemy has over 155,000 courses available on its platform as of early 2021.
With a huge repository of online courses, learners can find courses ranging from technology, business development, entrepreneurship, personal development to pretty much anything you’d like to learn.
Cookie: 7 days
How To Sign Up For Udemy Affiliate
To sign up for the Udemy Affiliates Program, simply click this link and follow the steps to sign up. Creating an account is easy as I created one while writing this article.
However, they have some specific visitor requirements for your primary platform of choice for product promotion.
Although I was not given the exact minimum, my research led me to believe a minimum of 5000 visitors per month is required to qualify as an Udemy Affiliate.
Another popular marketplace for online courses is Coursera. Unlike Udemy, Coursera partners with academic institutions and other recognized corporate entities to provide courses to learners.
From free to accredited courses, learners can have their pick of courses. You’ll find some of the most recognized academic institutions on this platform and be able to sign up for a certificate course.
Learners can easily locate and sign up for various degree programs and other forms of specialization programs from some of these recognized universities.
From physics, health, and maths to software development, learners can always find their field of study on Coursera.
Commission: 10% to 45%
Cookie: 30 days
How To Sign Up For Coursera
To sign up for the Coursera Affiliate Program, simply click this link and follow the steps to sign up. Just like Udemy, creating your affiliate account is very easy.
Coursera also has a minimum amount of page view requirement for registering affiliates.
Unfortunately, Coursera affiliates do not receive a commission on certificate and degree course purchases.
Another online marketplace for online courses is Pluralsight. Having personally taken a few courses on this platform, the lessons available for technology courses are some of the best in the market.
If Information technology is your specialty, then Pluralsight is one of the best platforms for software developers, data administrators, and IT administrators on the market.
Other courses available include leadership, project management, business professional systems, and creative professional applications.
Commission: $5 – Free trails, (50% Monthly, 15% Annual, 10% Premium) subscription
Cookie: 45 days
How To Sign Up For Pluralsight Affiliate
To sign up for the Coursera Affiliate Program, simply click this link, click the appropriate button, and then fill in the form to sign up as an affiliate.
If you’re passionate about the technology space and have the necessary reach to target customers in that bracket, Pluralsight Affiliate Program is the dedicated and right choice for you.
Another popular online learning platform is Skillshare. It is one of the best online learning platforms for creative people.
Learn design, photography, business, and many more. The platform works on a subscription base which means all courses are available once a user pays for the monthly subscription.
Unlike Coursera, Skillshare doesn’t provide any forms of certifications to its learners. If instructor interaction is important to your learners, then Skillshare is the best platform for them.
Commission: $7 for new referrals
Cookie: 30 days
How To Sign Up For Skillshare Affiliate
Joining the Skillshare affiliate program is free. Simply visit this link and then select the “Join Free” button.
Fill in the appropriate information on the sign-up page and read through their agreement form to get a better understanding of their payment details.
Unlike most Udemy, Coursera, Pluralsight, or Skillshare, Teachable enables content creators to create, customize and host their courses on their domains.
Instead of hosting on any of the above marketplace platforms, Teachable enables content creators to host on their websites and customize the look and feel of the platform without the need to worry about technical or coding details.
Anyone who has researched learning management systems has probably heard of Teachable learning management system.
It’s one of the most popular learning management systems on the market and enables entrepreneurs to create their courses and host them on their platforms without any hassles.
Cookie: 90 days
How To Sign Up For Teachable Affiliate
Unlike any of the above-listed online course platforms where affiliates have to refer learners, a teachable platform is meant for content creators.
This makes it perfect for any affiliate marketer who has a huge base of content creators to market to.
Commissions will therefore depend on the number of course creators who register for the recurring plan Teachable platform.
Signing up for the Teachable Partner program is also very easy. Simply click this link, and then proceed to fill in the sign-up form to complete your Teachable Affiliate registration.
If you’re into cloud computing, project management, data science, IT, software development, digital marketing, and any forms of emerging technologies, SimpliLearn is a great platform to consider.
With accredited certificate courses from multiple institutions, learners get access to world-class training and expertise.
Cookie: 30 days
How To Sign Up For SimpliLearn Affiliate
Signing up for the SimpliLearn affiliate program is very easy. Simply click this link, then click the “Join Now” button, and then fill in the appropriate details to complete your registration.
As with most affiliate programs, referrers are required to have some level of traffic or visitors to their individual or business platform.
One of the best platforms for learning everything technology is Edureka. Unlike most other marketplace platforms, Edureka aims to ensure that learners complete their courses.
This has given them some of the best learner completion scores in the online learning industry.
They also have live instructor-led classes that add a social aspect to their learning structure and learners also get a wide range of certificate courses to choose from.
If a student has any queries, their instructors are always available to answer questions and encourage learners to work even harder.
Lessons are also practical and instructors translate them to everyday objects, instances, and projects for easier understanding.
Cookie: 30 days
How To Sign Up For Edureka Affiliate
To sign up for the Edureka affiliate program, simply click this link, and then select the “Become Affiliate” button.
Fill in the provided form to register as an affiliate. You should note that Edureka, like most other Affiliate programs, comes with a minimum visitor or traffic requirement for affiliates.
It is therefore advisable to ensure that you have a minimum of 5000 daily views to register for this program.
The Bottom Line
There are various online learning platforms out in the market. And with online learning becoming a must for most institutions as well as both working-class professionals and students, entering this space as an affiliate is always a good choice.
That said, it is necessary to ensure that you have the audience or know how to attract the audience to sell these courses.
Based on the category of courses you may be interested in, these are some of the best online course affiliate programs you’ll find on the market.
It is advisable to take a look at their offerings, the demographics of your target audience as well as other relevant details before deciding on an affiliate program.