This is a guest post from Jawad Khan.
Online earning opportunities for skilled professionals are increasing every day. From blogging and freelancing, to selling digital products, there are a variety of ways designers, writers, teachers, and professionals from different fields can make a sustained online income.
I recently came across a review of Udemy, an online learning website where skilled professionals teach online courses through video tutorials. I was amazed at the amount of money instructors are making on Udemy by creating short video courses on different topics. It’s a onetime effort that pays them regularly.
For example, Victor Bastos, an instructor at Udemy who creates tutorials on different programming languages, earned more than $489,134.29 just from his tutorials in just one year.
This shows you the demand for such tutorials and the fact that people are willing to pay for them.
If you already have an established blog with regular readers, it’s much more profitable to sell tutorials directly from your WordPress blog because platforms like Udemy keep a large share of your tutorial earnings and can change their policies at any time. By selling tutorials on your own site, you not only keep all the profits, but also ensure that the visitors remain on your own platform.
Why do you need to have a special set up for selling video tutorials? Why can’t you just sell them like any other digital products – for example, like eBooks?
There are a few key differences:
- Video tutorials are much larger in size, often several gigabytes, as compared to eBooks. Selling them directly from your server as downloadable files can create a lot of additional load on your bandwidth and may even force your hosting provider to disallow video downloads.
- Secondly, many users like to stream video tutorials online instead of downloading them completely. You can’t do that if you sell videos as direct downloadable files.
- You need to have a proper payment management system in place to ensure that your buyers complete the purchase before gaining access to videos.
With these key points in mind, here are a couple of ways you can sell video tutorials from your WordPress blog.
Selling Behind a Paywall
A paywall is a “members only” area on your website that your visitors can access by paying for a monthly or yearly subscription. Content marketing leader Copyblogger use a paywall for selling premium content, courses, and products.
Once users become your paid members, you can route them to your exclusive video tutorial content. You can use plugins like Restrict Content Pro to create a members’ only area and to hide the pages with your video tutorials for non-members. This can be done with just a couple of clicks from the page or post you’d like to restrict:
Make sure you don’t host the video on your own server, as that will burden your bandwidth unnecessarily. Instead, go for video hosting sites like Vimeo Pro or Wistia (I prefer Wistia myself). Alternatively, you can use Amazon S3 cloud storage for hosting your videos, since it’s highly scalable and reliable.
In the paywall model, your buyers need to pay annually or monthly to access all the paid content.
Selling Video Tutorials With Selz
If you don’t like the membership selling model, you can adopt a more direct approach by selling individual or bulk video tutorials directly from your WordPress blog with Selz.
Selz is a powerful digital selling tool that simplifies video selling. Instead of putting burden on your website, Selz hosts your video – up to 15GB per file – on its own servers and offers unlimited bandwidth consumption. It also has a complete payment management system to process your buyer payments.
Once your tutorial is uploaded on Selz, you can embed it as a selling widget in your WordPress blog.
Here’s the step-by-step process to setting up your video tutorial in Selz.
- Set up a free account on Selz. Sign up using your social media accounts or directly by your email.
- Sign in to your account and complete your payment details in the main dashboard. Selz will use these details to send you the payments received from your buyers. You can choose payments via PayPal or directly to your US bank account.
- Click on the “Sell an Item” button and select “Digital Item” to set up your video tutorial.
- In the product set up area, you can to upload the video tutorial to your account. You can upload files of up to 15GB size.
- You can offer direct streaming from your website, complete file download, or both. For streaming to work properly, your video needs to be in MP4 format.
- Add an image or small video clip as a preview of your tutorial. In my experience, short video previews are more effective than static images.
- Complete the details of your tutorial, like title, description, etc. Make sure your titles are optimized with proper keywords, since Selz products are searchable on Google. In the description, use a list of the main points that your tutorial covers.
- Add a price for your tutorial and set a quantity if you want to offer it for a limited time.
- Once you complete the pricing and other details, proceed to process your video, which will optimize your video.
- This is how your video tutorial will appear to the users:
- Buyers will have the option to stream, download, or save the tutorial to their Dropbox account once they purchase it.
Now that you’ve created your video tutorial on Selz, you just need to embed it in your WordPress blog. Here’s the process:
- Download the Selz WordPress plugin or install it from your WordPress admin panel.
- When you activate the plugin, you can find it in the Appearance → Widgets section, and as a shortcode button in the post editor.
- Selz will give you a unique “item link” when you create a product. Copy that link and paste it in the Selz plugin’s “item link” field.
- You can use this to display your products on pages or posts. Here’s an example of how your video tutorial widget would appear on your site:
- You can also change the style of your product widget by changing the color of the “Buy Now” button text, widget background, and links.
To purchase your tutorial, buyers only need to click on the “Buy Now” button. This will open a check out window in the same product widget. There are no redirections involved in the buying process so there’s a lesser chance of any buyers going away without completing the purchase.
Additionally, you can share your video tutorial with your social media followers on Twitter and by creating a free Selz store on Facebook.
Video tutorial are currently in huge demand, and they only seem to be getting more popular. By using the strength of your blog audience, you can create a completely new and extremely effective revenue channel by selling tutorials on different topics that interest your audience. Both the video selling options discussed in this post are very effective and should simplify video selling for you even if you’re an amateur WordPress user.