Bit of a click-baity title.
I've been on Udemy now 5 years, and sold more than $1 million in courses in that time. This is my advice. Take it or leave it. Up to you.
If this is your first year on Udemy, you might be interested to know how the rest of the year will go, so that you can plan your work.
July, bit of a quiet month. People are on holidays in the Northern Hemisphere of the world. But surprisingly, this is not the slowest time of year. I'd rate this in the middle. An "average" month in expected sales.
August, back to school season starts again. As we get to the end of August, people start getting their heads out of beaches and summer, and start thinking of school again. Course sales pick up near the end of August. Udemy runs a "back to school" sale then, and August is perhaps the "third best month" of the whole year.
September, a bit slower. Students hopefully stacked up on courses in August and so September is a bit of a "pull back" in terms of sales. Back to July levels. No major promotions this month.
October, picking up. As we get to the end of October, sales start to pick up a little. Above average month. Udemy sometimes runs a "course creation" contest or incentives around this time. Last year, they paid a cash bonus for launching a course during this period.
November is the big month. Thanksgiving. Black Friday, Cyber Monday. This is the start of Udemy's sale season. November is often the #1 month in terms of sales or very close to #1. If you have a course you're planning to launch, launch it before November.
December, again right after a big sale is the hangover. December is one of the slowest months of the year. Christmas season, and people have other things on their mind.
January, new year's resolutions means New Year's Sale. This is the #2 month of the year, or for some people #1. If you missed Black Friday, launching your course well before Jan 1 is recommended.
- July is a great month to course creators (us) to be course creating. August is often the #3 sales period of the year.
- If you've got a new course in the pipeline, launch it by the end of October. That's less than 4 months from today. Move heaven and Earth to get it done. Work weekends and tell the kids to talk to your spouse for a week or two. Missing Black Friday with a new course is like the ultimate Udemy instructor sin.
- If you miss Black Friday, don't miss New Years sale.
Scott is absolutely right. For me, it has always November, January, August, and May in terms of my highest months. December is always the lowest.
I am launching a course in August, two in October, and two in December to capitalize on this half of the year.
For me, the past 6 months have been awesome, so I cannot wait for the next 6 months where we get 3 of the biggest sales months!
Thanks for this advice.
Top 1-3 things an instructure needs to do to maximize their number of sales per month?
(taking into account that one's course topics are a combination of high demand/high availability, and high demand/low availability topics...)
I currently have just over 40k students, of which 99% are free enrollments via coupons.
I've only recently started working on courses within the high demand/low availability topics.
I make less than $50 per month currently.
Scott I can just agree and confirm, it's exactly as you depicted it. Great post, thank you for reminding us about things that are so obvious that we alone can miss it. Kind greetings
As always you're advice is concise, helpful, and wise. I always find you to be one of the most helpful contributors in this forum and your courses are spot on. Thanks for these tips.
Thanks for your info. With this, I added new lectures to my main course. And for other courses, I updated contents so that "latest update" become all August.
Now, I am enjoying the all these efforts from ongoing August's back to school sale.
You have always guided me on this udemy journey since I began in 2015.
All time my favorite of Phil Ebiner's podcast episode is yours. I listen to it many times. I expecially love when you talk about your relationship with Udemy staffs. "You love them, they love you back".
Your biggest fan in Tokyo, Japan.
Thanks! I think you have been doing great on Udemy. You did all the hard work, and are getting the rewards from that.
Speaking of Tokyo, I want to go to the Japan 2020 Olympics! I don't know if I can, but I would like to.
Wish I came across this post before I posted my first course in May 2019. My sales saw double digit growth MOM with August being an absolute delighter. However, the first 8 days of September have been extremely quite with the traffic to my landing page reducing by 50% and the conversion rate dipping from mid double digits to 6%. I was begining to blame the new pricing/promotion scheme launched by Udemy this month for this. Thanks for easing the anxiety of new instructors Scott. Have another course in the pipeline. Will move heaven and earth to publish it in the next month.
I'm not following quite the same pattern... my August was a trainwreck sales wise, down about 30% on the same period last year. July does tend to be slow, but I find December quite good for sales if you pitch the fact poeple can gift courses (with a nice e-gift wrap!) in your promotions.
September seems to be picking up although it could be better... we'll have to wait and see what this pricing structure malarkey leads to.