Many people like the idea of creating and selling an online course but what isn’t so clear is all the time is what that course should be about!
Sure it is fun to creating courses around your passion but not every passion is a viable (profitable) niche.
Software training is a huge industry. When I was consulting for Fortune 500 companies on their elearning programs it was always a combination of software and process training.
Need more proof? Head on over to Lynda.com (or a similar site) and you will find that the most popular programs are often around software like Microsoft Office Suite or Adobe Photoshop.
Before jumping into the good news about software courses, let’s address the bad news. If you decide to create a course in a software niche you will be hard pressed to make any sales if you choose the obvious software products (such as the two that I listed). There is simply way too much competition.
In fact, any software that requires regular training is going to have a higher degree of competition. It’s the nature of the industry in this case, but that’s because it is so lucrative!
If you decide on this type of training then make sure you have a well thought-out marketing plan in place and you will need to work hard at executing it.
The good news though is that there are tons of popular software tools out there that are specific to various industries. For example, I once provided some consulting for SolidProfessor.com and they built a very successful company creating training around engineering software.
Another good example is OSTraining, which focuses on courses around the open source software market.
Each time there is a new edition the training has to be updated but that also can mean your students will continue to renew their access in order to always have access to the latest versions.
Creating effective training around software requires a lot of work but the rewards are second to none. If you can establish your brand as the “go-to” place for training on a specific niche software then you will always have a steady stream of new students.