By: Teachable Inc.
There are many entrepreneurs, bloggers, consultants, coaches, business owners, or other skilled individuals who yearn to make an online presence. By providing online courses, the creator can earn passive income as it attracts a massive number of students. Well, it is easier said than done.
Creating a website to host the courses involves considerable expense, time, expertise, and efforts. That is why people are turning towards white-label platforms. Whereby the creators get rescued from all the labor of creating a website. The only requirement is adding your logo and branding on the platform. Teachable is a cloud-based software that allows its users to develop and teach online courses.
Some decades ago, corporate branding only entailed a company to establish its logo and company letterhead.
Today, in the technological age, more is demanded out of branding. It involves aspects of attaching taglines and slogans to the company logo.
Its personality should also reflect on the office premises, on the company’s website, social media accounts, and the product/service too.
Individuals and entrepreneurs are also coming out strongly by attaching a brand value to themselves. We usually behave, style, and dress in a manner that indicates our persona.
We have also come to recognize and value unique talent and skills. Well, some people share quite eccentric content, e.g., how to text a girl you like, David Beckam studies, Hypnosis 101, and others.
The bottom line is people are coming out to reveal their unique knowledge; at a price, of course.
Online learning and teaching have caught up in the race, and we have plenty of platforms offering that. A content creator seeks a suitable LMS to create, manage, sell, and promote his/her courses.
Not many tutors are tech-savvy; thus, concepts such as the domain, web design, integrations may all be alien to them.
That is where platforms such as Teachable come in. Any business or individuals who are course creators can sign up with Teachable.
In return, they will host and manage your content by allowing you to create your school. They do the hard part of hosting, providing support, sales, handling payment, among others.
You, as a creator, can focus on constructing appropriate online courses, and you will have control over your data and your students as well.
They believe that everything is teachable. Whether it is gardening, art & craft, meditation, vegan cooking, programming languages, academics; anything can be a part of your school’s offering.
It is an all-in-one platform that currently has more than 68 000 instructors who have uploaded over 186 000 active courses.
There are more than 18 million students who are currently utilizing the service of Teachable. It is a SaaS founded in 2014 with headquarters in New York City.
It enables the creators to reach out to millions of learners around the world. They have free and 3 other plans (basic, professional, and business). The users can subscribe to them either monthly or annually.
All their plans provide unlimited course hosting, integrated payment processing, student management, lecture comments, and basic quizzes, and free courses.
If a user signs up and uses the free plan, then there is a limit on the number of students (currently 10.) They also have to part with a certain percentage of their sales, say 10% plus any other transaction fees.
The free plan subscribers can’t access many sales and integrations features of Teachable. However, it is ideal to figure out the aptness of the platform.
As mentioned earlier, we have individuals who are more than willing to share their skills and knowledge online. They reach out to a vast audience and earn a considerable income too.
The limiting factor can be the lack of technical know-how. Building a website is not a walk in the park. Hiring professionals to set up your website is also a demanding, expensive, and lengthy process.
It is because there is so much to do even after the website is up and running. One needs to update it regularly, train the users, and look over aspects such as SEO to earn from it.
As such, the best alternative is to turn towards white label LMS like Teachable. They offer you to personalize an already existing online platform.
Therefore, no need to spend on web developers and UX specialists. The customization of the website enables the user to reflect his/her brand and personality.
A photographer’s school will have a different feel and look than that of a mathematician. Moreover, the user can employ the Power Editor, which allows advanced customization by editing the templates.
Teachable is a result of the owner’s experience from other e-learning platforms. His dissatisfaction with Udemy made him come up with a concept that will provide control to the content creator.
The owner of Teachable was once an instructor who witness how the e-learning portal shared almost 50% of the content creator's revenue.
Moreover, they did not get recognition; the platform did. It led to the creation of software that can be personalized and controlled by the instructors in a few non-technical steps.
It has the intention of taking care of the heavy work of web hosting and payment processing so that the instructors only do what they do best-create online content.
Any LMS should entail some typical components that enable the user to create, manage, analyze, and provide a report for the training courses.
An efficient software should be able to provide course creation, assessments and assignments, grading system, communication (peer-to-peer learning), and interactive resources(multi-media.)
The system should be safe so that the user can manage the course documents. The system needs to be self-sufficient so that the students can learn at their own pace and in conjunction with other learners.
The effect of social learning is undeniable as it creates a community of learners. We live in an era of social networking, and sharing our experiences and achievements has become a common trend.
Let us now explore the system of Teachable by figuring out how to create courses and running a successful school.
Almost any skilled person is eligible for becoming an instructor at Teachable. It includes existing YouTubers, authors, solopreneurs, or business entities.
They can sign up, create their school, and turn their knowledge into a profitable venture. Once the instructor signs up, the system loads a page with a few questions; it is to get user’s feedback.
The general path of action for the instructor then involves creating their school. The school will host the courses designed by them.
They have to select a plan for the school, we have mentioned that they currently offer free along with other 3 paid plans. They also avail of 30-day refund policy for the dissatisfied paid users.
The user is required to configure the school’s domain and then to set up payment gateways. The user faces an intuitive dashboard once he/she is logged in after attending the questions.
The dashboards are a convenient place to get an overall glimpse of the system’s KPI (key performance indicators).
They can be used to monitor and analyze the performance and other strategic activities. After signing up, the Teachable dashboard guides the new user in the process of launching his/her school.
The steps mentioned in the dashboard guide the user. It involves creating a course, customize look and feel, setting up the domain name, and launching the school.
Once the school gets initiated, the dashboard changes its appearance. It then holds analytical content. There is a graphical illustration of the number of new sign-ups against time (date and month.)
The instructor can view the statistics on the graph on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. The aim is to attract new students in the courses, and the chart provides the trend in enrollment.
There is a summary of the activities that take place today vs. the month. It includes the number of new signups, active students, lecture completed, and course completion.
It tries to compare the daily performance with the monthly outcomes. Such statistics keep the instructor informed on the achievement of his/her school.
The dashboard is intuitive and provides easy access to the various function of the system. The most important gateway is the tab of “view your school,” which hosts the courses.
There are other tabs on the navigation panel, which includes users, site, sales, Emails, settings followed by a section dedicated to courses.
One can view the plans (for upgrading), help section, and the TeachableU feature through the dashboard.
We have mentioned that the first step taken by the instructor is to create and launch his/her school.
Let us look at the steps which enable the instructors to share their content with the world. It begins with creating a course, uploading the content, and personalizing the school.
Of course, the course requires an audience who enroll after paying for the sessions. We go through the Teachable approach to course creation.
An effective LMS allows the instructor to build customized learning experiences for the students. The system should enable easy course creation; in a few and easy to understand steps.
We noticed that Teachable provides ease of course creation. The instructor designs the content theoretically first, then assemble all the resources and publish a Teachable course.
When it comes to online courses, the creator has to be cautious as they need to deliver engaging content which is resourceful at the same time.
Blended learning increases student’s level of involvement. Motivation and commitment are essential for students who aim at achieving proficiency via these online discourses.
The course tab on the navigation tab initiates the process of creation. The first page is the new course section, which asks for details, such as course title, subtitle, and author.
There may be cases when the instructor is not the author, hence essential to recognize the appropriate creator.
The system loads a curriculum page that shows various parts of the course. To complete the step of course creation, one needs to access the new lecture button provided alongside the first section.
There are other options available on the top panel which include, preview, bulk upload, or to add a new section.
The instructor needs to attach the learning material to the created lectures. They allow multi-media content; thus, one can add text, video, audio, images, among others.
The new lecture section provides room for the instructor to add files, text, quiz, and code. They allow one to drop and drag files.
Alternatively, one can source from the web, link (URL), FTP, Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive. Hence, there are sufficient means of getting the resources required in the curriculum.
According to us, Teachable offers more than enough venues for the instructor to source the multi-media content of the course. Moreover, the content will be structured, hence easy to be followed by one and all.
When it comes to the hierarchy of the course, it includes setting a section which can have multiple lectures.
Once the instructor has covered all the material under the necessary lectures, then the course can be published.
The next move is to price the course. One can select to offer it for free, on subscription, a one-time purchase, or set a payment plan.
The free courses do not attract any charges, while subscription receives a monthly payment. The instructor can plan his/her method of receiving the payment via optimizing the payment plan option.
The published course appears on the information page. The user can post a new course in less than 5 steps. It means the process is simple and easy.
Again, the control is in the hands of the creator, as he/she can determine the optimal price for the content.
Many aspects of the course need to be addressed to provide a pleasant learning experience for the student. Let us browse through the ways to edit and enhance the content.
The published course can be unpublished if the instructor deems it to be unfit. The instructor can also take a sneak peek into the previews of the course.
The system displays the ways the course curriculum will be viewed (as a visitor or a student.) One can then provide details regarding the categorization of the course.
There is a branding segment which allows the instructors to add a thumbnail image and promo video. These additions promote personalization, and the instructor can create his/her unique identity.
The instructor can apply some compliance, which highlights some goals for one to advance in the course. It may include following the order of lectures, minimal video watching, or graded quiz completion.
There is also provision for setting a default page, which identifies the page that loads after purchasing the course.
There is a section meant to enhance the sales of the course. It involves the instructor to set an SEO friendly URL, provide an appropriate page title, and give a meta description.
Unfortunately, SEO is only available for paid subscribers. Apart from these modifications, the instructor can opt to provide the course as a drip.
The dripping function allows the instructor to set a specific date and time when the published course can be accessible by the student.
It can be set to drip after certain days of enrollment or via email announcements. It is to prevent the student from viewing all the content.
There is a segment that holds the comments made on the course. The instructor, however, is free to enable or deny the students from writing comments on the course.
The instructor can add coupons codes for the courses to attract clients. It may lure some students into taking up the lectures after receiving discounts and offers.
The instructor can provide bundle content (multiple courses), generate reports for the course and its certification.
The reports are from graded assessments, available under professional and business plans only. The same applies to course compliance and the certificate of completion.
One is free to delete or duplicate the course too. We may be unable to go through all the features involved in enhancing the course due to the limitation imposed by plans.
One can modify these pages by changing the logos, fonts, and colors of various functions. The customization of the course pages is possible by page blocks.
The blocks are pre-made, and one can temper with them to change its content. One can add, re-arrange, or delete the blocks.
Various blocks can be included to create a unique and personalized page. There is a Liquid block (an open-source template language), which allows one to add an HTML code to the page.
The other kinds include a background image, video embed, course description, author bio, course curriculum, button block, and many others.
With this, we have to use the block and change its aspects. We can alter the page to make it appealing by adding/editing images, text, description, and the color of the tabs, among others.
The sales page is the first thing a student sees, and it allows them to enroll in the course.
Similarly, the checkout and the thank you pages can be modified to create the desired content. We can acknowledge that Teachable provides enough facilities for instructors to create and modify the course landing pages.
We have discovered the course creation function of the LMS; now, we see how much we can personalize our site.
Your school is a personal space for the instructor, which includes the school name, description, testimonials, and your bio. There are 2 ways of viewing it, as logged in user and as a logged-out user.
The appearance of the school can be modified by the instructor to reflect his/her personality. It is possible by editing the themes, fonts, and colors.
These alterations are possible via the site tab on the dashboard, which opens up a navigation panel. It includes themes, domains, navigation, bios, pages, comments, custom text, code snippets, and power editor.
Every instructor is unique and has a distinct taste for color and choice of the page layout. That is why they are free to edit and select the themes and colors of their choice.
They offer advanced customization via their power editor, which works on refining the templates available.
We can start the personalization process by selecting the themes. With this, the instructor chooses images for his/her site logo, homepage background, and favicon.
We can also alter the font style. A variety of font styles are available, and the instructor selects one among them. Not that it makes a significant difference in the page, but change is always refreshing.
Then there are 4 preset color palettes, but the instructor can modify using the color picker under each aspect of the school’s page.
One can select the color for the navigation bar & footer background, navigation bar links, buttons & links, headings, homepage heading & subtitles, body text, and others.
There is an option to preview the changes made to the school page. The instructor needs to explore the various options available for personalization. We had fun while engaging in this section.
Teachable provides a default subdomain to its users, ending with Teachable.com. However, one can add their custom root domain.
It is possible when the instructor has an existing domain. But the feature is only viable for users with paid plans.
The process requires the instructor to add a new domain, after creating a CNAME record within the domain hosts, e.g., GoDaddy, WordPress, Hover, and others.
If the domain Name Registrars do not allow editing of the CNAME record, then Cloudflare can be used to accomplish the task. The instructor has to set the custom domain as the primary domain after verifying it.
Using custom domain provides enhanced branding to the website, and the owner gets to have more control over its operation.
The navigation settings allow one to select the homepages; viewed by logged out or logged in user. It is indeed exciting to see pages from different perspectives.
The logged-in users are the students who create an account with Teachable. We also have random visitors who check out course pages as logged-out users.
There is a pages tab that allows the instructor to personalize and add various pages on the homepage. We have discussed the default landing pages; pages of sales, checkout, and thank you page.
Let us now figure out how the self-contained building blocks allow customization of the school’s homepage via their site page.
We need to personalize the homepage to reflect our branding style. How to do that?
Add image blocks of your choice, write text blocks that relate to your content, include button blocks that call out the students, e.g., sign up, enroll, call to action, etc.
Frankly, the task may seem tricky at first, but with practice, one can figure out how different aspects of the page can be customized.
One can also create a custom HTML block that can be personalized using HTML or Liquid; these are options to modify the default styles., However, one may still be unconvinced with the personalization. What then?
Well, Teachable goes a step further and allows advanced customization through its code snippets and power editor.
The power editor makes changes in the template code of the school homepage. Again, the Liquid blocks are used here for customization.
However, the power editor is for the professional and business plans only. Despite that, an instructor has enough options to personalize his/her pages, and Teachable provides support via knowledge base too.
We started with a guided dashboard; which instructed us to create courses, done. Then came customization of our school, along with setting up the domain name. That also achieved; hence, mission accomplished!
Our dashboard now indicates that we have to launch our school so that we can get working on our agenda.
Once the school gets launched, and we face the real dashboard, which gives us serious information addressing student enrollment.
Managing the students is the sole responsibility of the instructor. The students create the clientele base; so, it is vital to provide them with quality service and address their queries and complaints.
Communication is necessary to get issues sorted out. Each course has a section for comments which can be turned on under curriculum settings.
Apart from that, the student can also get in touch with the instructor via messages as there are contact details available.
The instructor can manually add students or import via CSV. Each plan has a limitation on the number of students that can enroll.
In most cases, the instructor is the owner, author, and the admin, however, it might not be so in a few scenarios.
Thus, it is crucial to lay out the roles of the different users, such as the primary owner, owner, author, and affiliates.
The primary owner has all the administrative rights, while the owner may face some limitations depending on the roles.
An author is responsible for creating the course, but he/she can manage them too. The affiliates users promote the courses by bringing students to enrolling the owner’s content.
There is an option of custom users whereby the school owner can allow or restrict some permissions. These could be creating the course, sending emails, moderate comments, among other things.
Apart from managing the users, the instructor needs to handle other administrative tasks. Let us look at the various settings options available in Teachable.
Providing the instructor with control over his/her school means a lot as it enables the proper functioning of the system.
The aim is to create and deliver course content that can be worthwhile for the students. The system provides support from time to time through their knowledgebase articles or by creating a support ticket.
We have the general settings which allow the owner to set their basic information. They offer a toggle to enable or disable the signup reCAPTCHA to deal with spam enrollment.
There is an address section that requires one to provide physical address along with phone number details.
The next sections handle the lecture, whether they should use autoplay or auto-complete the lessons. The comments section is open for moderation too.
There are options to set the multi-level threading and permitting of attachments with the comments. More interestingly, Teachable allows the instructor to add a blog.
It will appear in the school’s navigation bar, and the visitors can check them out. Blogging enhances SEO and makes it easier for people to recommend your page.
There is a myTeachable account which allows any user with a Teachable account to access the school from the dashboard. The paid plan subscribers can disable this feature.
The safety and security of the data have been taken into consideration by the Teachable team. They comply with the European Union GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation).
It is to protect the personal information that the users provide to the system. Besides, they include the security technology of SSL. It provides a secure connection between web servers and browsers.
The school has some pages which contain sensitive information. For instance, the checkout page, where the students provide their debit/credit card details.
The security provision also boosts the SEO of the page, as secured sites rank higher in the search engine results.
There may be cases of mixed content when a page has a secure HTTPS connection, and a material (image, video, or text) is from an insecure HTTP. The system typically shows a warning message during such events.
Safeguarding users' information is vital as it prevents them from facing internet threats and scams. The instructors also have their name and branding at stake. Thus, they should also follow practices that are in alignment with GDPR and protect the rights of the students.
Courses in the school are targeted to meet student’s needs and requirements. The course creators at Teachable develop the content of a wide variety.
Students browse through the courses which are suitable for them, purchase them, and enroll in the lectures.
Teachable treats the school and the courses independently in terms of registration. Meaning there may be probabilities of someone subscribing to your school but not enrolling in any of your courses.
The sales page appears first while joining in any course, which holds the button for enrollment. The course entails sections and the lectures; whereby the learning material is available.
Multi-media is supported; hence, the student will watch the video content, read the articles, and study through blended learning.
They go through the assessments and the quizzes created by the instructor. Furthermore, social learning is also possible via the comments sections.
If the school owner has a professional and up plan, then they can award the students with a certificate of completion.
But for that, there must be some graded assessments which the student completes along with the course content.
The reporting tools provide more information on how the student completed the course and the scores in the graded quizzes.
The report section is available under every course with the professional and business plan. There are 5 kinds of reports, i.e., lecture completion, video stats, quiz scores, leaderboards, and video engagement.
The student breakdown section of lecture completion displays the average rate of completion of various students.
The leadership board lists the performance of all the students within a course. The video related stats enables the instructor to know total plays, visitors, and the hours of video watch.
The paid plans allow the instructor to provide a progress report for each student. It shall address the areas of lecture progress, Wistia video heatmap (shows the watched, re-watched and skipped parts of videos), and the quiz scores.
A successful owner of Teachable school is one that has excellent marketing skills that entice the students’ to enroll in their courses. Let us now see what options are available for the instructors to boost their sales.
The factor that sets Teachable apart from its competitors is that it has in-built support for sales. They try to enhance the schools by providing technology, community, and marketing support.
They provide frequent webinars and articles which give the user's details on new ways to sell their courses.
The sales sections include the course transaction, earning statements, breakdown, and upsells. Once the instructor kicks off sales, it becomes essential to monitor the trend in transaction history.
The owners can view the statements after 20 days of the month-end, the information on the school’s earning, and the payout is available here.
There is also a breakdown in terms of days and months. It shows revenue and payment statistics. The owner can advertise Upsells using the thank you page.
They customize and add a block that will reflect the upsell offer while checking out, or on the thank you page.
It is a practice that generates extra income as the offer includes a service/product that is an upgraded version.
For example, the instructor may sell the ABC course at $50. But it is a basic version; he/she indicates a premium version, ABCx with excellent resources at $90.
A difference of $40 can convince a customer to enroll in the best version of the course. Just like the airline companies offer to provide first-class seats during the check-in process.
Although Teachable is not a marketplace, and it doesn’t promote cross-selling. But some instructors may team up to boost each other’s courses.
They have a Facebook group called The Teachable Tribe, where the instructors engage with one another.
Sales improve when many students enroll in the courses, and for that, the instructors have to develop a plan of action.
It may include creating a blog, social media accounts, email marketing, giving coupons, pre-selling, and strategizing other promotional activities.
Teachable offers in-built emailing, and it can be modified using the Template Editor. There are various kinds of emails that a student receives from the instructor.
It includes signup confirmation, comment notification, receipt, regarding drip content, certificate, among others.
We can also integrate our email service provider with Teachable using Zapier. Let us now check out what else is available for integration.
Many of us are familiar with using one particular app/software for a function. A change may prevent us from using a system that does not allow us to integrate our favorite application.
The integration allows two separate software applications to share business data and processes, hence creating a workflow. We can continue to use the integrated apps along with Teachable.
There are efficient tools in the market for various purposes, email marketing, payments, website analytics, CRM, or social media.
Teachable offers free users the option to integrate Google Analytics, Sumo, and Segment. Moreover, the paid plans can add Zapier, Mailchimp, and ConvertKit.
They also allow third-party apps integration using Webhooks. All these options are to enhance the learning experience.
Zapier is perhaps the most popular automation tool. It allows integration with over 1500 web application. The instructor can easily set up a zap with Gmail, Google Docs, Twitter, WebinarJam, etc.
Webhook, on the other side, allows apps to communicate and notifies the instructor on any significant event. It may be when the student completes a course, failure in an exam, or new student sign up.
An instructor may have a massive email list; MailChimp makes it easy to manage the email marketing task.
ConvertKit is a better option for generating the audience as it acts as a single database of subscribers. We can further create tags that can segment users by location or other criteria.
Vizia enhances the videos created by the instructors. It allows them to add quizzes, polls, call-to-action, and other features, which improves user engagement.
Google Analytics or other analytical software provides the chance for the instructor to track the performance of the school.
It collects the data of website traffic, creates custom reports, and allows one to check if they are meeting their goals (conversions). The insight provided by the app enables the instructor to make strategic decisions.
The third-party integration is available for paid plans only. Moreover, Teachable’s support team provides no assistance in case of an issue with any integrated app.
We can point out that the pre-configured integration provided by Teachable is limited in number if compared with other LSM. Especially for the unpaid subscribers who can only integrate 3 applications.
The students can use the credit/debit cards, PayPal, Apple Pay, and Google Pay to pay for their purchased courses.
The checkout process for the students requires them to provide account and payment information.
The sales page brought the student to buy the course, and the checkout page enabled them to purchase and make the payments.
The thank-you page loads once the payment is made, and the student can then access the course material.
A purchase receipt gets delivered via email to the students. Moreover, if the school is using either of Teachable’s payment gateways, then the student is eligible for 30 days refund.
Teachable provides various payment gateways for their schools; the first is the Teachable payment. It is for credit/debit card payments, which applies to schools in the USA or Canada.
Then there is a monthly payment gateway for non-USA or Canada, and lastly, the custom payment for subscribers of professional and up plans. These gateways use either Stripe or PayPal to process the transactions.
For automated payment to affiliates and authors, and payment for VAT, the owner, can subscribe to the Teachable’s Backoffice service.
Teachable collects the amount from the students and pays the instructor after 30 days and charging them with a transaction fee.
The higher subscription plans have different methods of payment, though. Their arrangements for paying the owners are quite confusing, as it differs depending on the type of subscription.
However, the instructor doesn’t need to worry about the transaction handling as Teachable takes care of it. The frequent webinars and marketing guidance from Teachable provide the instructor's means of increasing their revenue. Overall, they offer flexible methods of payments; via credit/debit cards, PayPal, or Stripe.
Teachable provides a conducive environment for course creators to earn passive income. They also support instructors' efforts by offering sales and marketing aid.
They take care of web hosting and payment processing so that the instructors can focus on their agenda. One doesn’t need to punch in credit card details for their unpaid plan.
Thus, amateur creators can play around and figure out if the subscription is worth it or not. Their unlimited hosting and courses attract many users.
The process of creating a course is another win situation as it is simple and straight forward. It saves the users from tech headaches of launching web pages in collaboration with other plugins.
The tech novice people will be able to work effectively with Teachable, as minimal technical knowledge is required.
Once the user plays around the different features, it becomes easy to use; the course builder uses a drag and drop process.
The customization of the school page is relatively sufficient. The landing pages can also be modified; however, the content can become generic and reflect Teachable features.
During checkout, they use the teachable subdomain even when the instructor is using his/her custom domain. Thus, white labeling is not 100% possible.
It also makes tax reporting convenient as the prices are EU VAT inclusive. The checkout process is also one-step, and they accept credit/debit cards along with PayPal and Stripe.
Their transaction fees and the long payout period (30 days+) may be drawbacks, but subscription to their higher-paid plan may provide relief to the school owner.
They do offer a certificate of completion in paid plans, but they lack gamification and system of badges/scores.
It is an ideal LMS for content creators who need to have control over their school. It may be in terms of domain, website branding, pricing, and marketing of courses. Teachable does stand up to its mark and allows content creators to develop and market their services with ease.