So, you’ve got an idea for an online course – but is it going to work? Are people going to want to enroll in it? Only by doing market research can you tell whether your course is likely to be a success. Market research could also help you to find faults with your current course model and help you to make improvements before the official launch. Here are some of the major forms of market research to consider when designing a course.
Use a keyword search tool to see how many people are looking for words related to your course. This will give you an indication of if people are looking for the course you provide, but also the actual keywords they are using (which will help with marketing your course later on). You can also see the click potential of the keywords, which will help to identify any competitors.
Research your competitors
Researching competitive courses could be very important for borrowing ideas and for contrastingly setting yourself apart. Take a look at the itinerary offered by other courses and read reviews of other courses to get an idea of what’s out there. You may even be able to survey people who have taken these other courses to see what they think they would change. Certain course subjects are likely to be more competitive than others, in which cases you may have to do more thorough research.
Surveys are also a great form of market research. You can use surveys to firstly get an idea of who your audience is, as well as finding out what they look for in a course. If your course is on a very niche topic, surveys could be important for establishing whether there is a market out there at all. There are survey building and distribution sites that you can use to build and share these surveys. You may also want to target people individually through emails or by visiting businesses and colleges in person.
Pilot your course
Piloting your online course should be the final stage in your market research. This involves testing your course on trial students. Ask your test audience questions throughout the piloting phase in order to find out how they are doing and whether they would make any improvements to a stage. You do not have to pilot the entire course – if you’re planning to launch a long course, you may only want to test certain aspects of it (it will be expensive to trial a course for a long period of time and you may find it hard to find a test audience willing to sign up for it).
Interested in designing and developing your own online course? Get in touch with us and let’s chat about what’s possible.