Marketing Entrepreneur. Day Trader. Business Contrarian.

How to Make $300 per Week in Passive Income

Posted on Dec 31, 2015 in Advertising, Analytics, Business Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

My Google Analytics Mastery Udemy course results for the month of December are (almost) in. With <1 day to go on New Year’s Eve I’m not expecting anything else to come in this month. Keep in mind that I ended the free promotion on 12/16 so all of my paid sales came in between 12/17-12/31.

udemy-revenue-1

I’m extremely pleased with the initial results, especially considering the chatter from other Udemy instructor’s that revenues typically die off quite substantially over the holiday period. That said, January will be the first full month and I expect this sales trend to continue considering Udemy will be running a sitewide New Year’s sale that begins on 1/1.

udemy-revenue-2

You can see the breakdown by sales channel above. 54% of all December sales came by way of my own promotions which I’ll go into more detail on shortly. My own promotions came from a variety of coupon codes that ranged from 30-75% off. I used this first 2 week period to do a lot of price testing relative to my costs to see what netted the most scale and best ROI. I was surprised to see how much came from Udemy organic in such a short period of time, but with a background in SEO I optimized my course for Google search and Udemy search very early on in the course creation process. From my initial Day 3 recap to now, I’ve moved up a couple more positions in Udemy’s search index for the term “Google Analytics.” The image below depicts what page 1 looks like right now and where I reside as “Google Analytics Mastery.” Udemy places 12 courses per page and I’m currently on page 1 in position 8, and after the first 3 days I started out in position 11. If anyone is interested, I’ll do a followup post on how to optimize your course detail page for better visibility in Udemy’s search results. Let me know in the comments.

google-analytics-mastery-udemy-seo

Regarding my own promotions that accounted for 54% of December’s revenue, sales from my own promotions came from a combination of my own email list and Facebook advertising. I have over 10 years of experience in the paid media space and already had familiarity with Facebook’s ad platform so right out of the gate I was seeing an ROI of 4x, but that was reduced to about 3x by the end of the month given I had reduced my ad budget but didn’t see any sales for a few days over the holidays. I’m going to continue price, message, and image testing my Facebook ads to see what resonates the best, but my floor target ROI is 3x. However I expect that number to drop into the 2.1-2.9x range as the campaign scales to higher volume and I’d be okay with that.

There’s currently a total of 262 students to end the month. 225 of these students got in as part of a 2-day free promo to jumpstart the course. That leaves 37 paying students to account for the $523 in revenue. That comes out to about a $14 avg. revenue per student. I’m a bit torn on this aspect because the course is currently priced at $297 without any discounts factored in. Part of me doesn’t like the fact that commissions are so high and that my content gets easily commoditized, but on the other hand almost 50% of December’s revenue came from either Udemy or an affiliate which would normally be completely lost revenue if I was promoting it on my own outside the Udemy platform.

Overall, I’m excited about the initial results and if I could pass a message on to other instructors who are just getting started, it would be that the hard part starts AFTER you create and publish your course. That’s when the hard work and fun really starts. Share your feedback, comments, and questions in the comments below and I’m looking forward to sharing my strategies, tactics, and results for January soon!

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  • Segma

    Hey Christopher, love the post. I have just completed my first month on Udemy but my earnings are nowhere near yours. It would be great if you can do a post on google analytics and how did you manage to rank so high on Udemy?

    • Chris Boulas

      Thanks Segma. I have a post on Udemy course promotion in the works! It’s a working draft but if you subscribe to my blog I’ll be sure to notify you when it’s been published.