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Skillshare Review 2021: Is Teaching on Skillshare Worth it?

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Skillshare Review

Skillshare logo

Skillshare is one of the largest online learning and teaching platforms with over 4 million students registered to date. It provides an easy way to upload your video courses and gives you different ways to earn money out of your classes.

Legit & Safe

Fees

Ease of Use

Payout Process

Pros

  • 2 ways of earning as a teacher – royalties and referrals
  • Skillshare has a rich community of engaged students
  • You can modify courses you’ve created for other platforms and publish them on Skillshare
  • You can create short bite-sized courses (20-60 minutes) which is really easy

Cons

  • No guarantee that you’ll earn revenue after publishing your course
  • Since there are many teachers on the platform, there’s a chance that your courses may go unnoticed

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What is Skillshare?


Skillshare is one of the largest online learning and teaching platforms with over 4 million students registered to date. 

Courses are divided into primary categories like:

  • Creative
  • Business
  • Technology
  • Lifestyle

The best part about Skillshare is, most of the courses offered here are taught by the industry professionals in the respective industries, so you will be learning from the very best.

But we’re here to look at the teaching aspect of it, right? Skillshare teachers have earned more than $5 million in total up to now.  So we’ll go over everything that you need to know about teaching on Skillshare in detail.

How Does Skillshare Work?


Skillshare classes are designed to help students not only learn a new actionable skill. 

On the other hand, Skillshare lets you become a teacher online and sell your course online.

Once your course gets life, students will be able to find it when they’re looking for similar courses and purchase it. What’s more, there’s no limit on how many times your course gets sold, so it’s kind of a passive income for you.

Is Skillshare Legit?


Skillshare has proven to be an excellent place to learn new skills for people who don’t have the time or can’t afford to go back to college and a legit place for teachers to make some cash. I mean, with over 4 million students and more than 23,000 courses, you can’t say it’s not legit.

The legitimacy of Skillshare is also approved by over 55,000 people who have rated the Skillshare mobile app; in fact, Skillshare has a 4.8-star rating on Apple Store and a 4.5-star rating on Play Store.

How Much Can You Make Teaching on Skillshare?


Skillshare claims that their top teachers earn over $100,000 a year and this might well be true (you’ll soon find out why). As a teacher, you’ll receive compensation for every minute Premium students watch as well as for each student you refer to Skillshare.

Earn Royalties

Earning royalties is how you will get paid for your content. You’ll receive a royalty for every minute a Premium student spends on your videos. 

The royalty pool is made up of 30% of the total Premium Membership revenue in a month. And you will receive a percentage of this royalty pool as your income depending on the time spent on your course videos by Premium students.

In fact, the amount you earn in royalties depends on how much time students have spent on your course, compared to the time spent on other courses. That’s why it’s hard to say how much you can expect to earn each month.

However, Skillshare claims that top-earning teachers make over $100,000 a year on the platform.

For example, if 5% of total Premium student minutes are spent on your videos, you’ll receive 5% out of the total royalty pool.

Earn Premium Referrals

Apart from getting paid for your course content, you can earn more through their Premium referral system. Each time a new Premium member signs up with your referral link, you get $10 as a bonus. 

This is a great feature to have if you’re already having an audience outside Skillshare.

Refer a Friend to Teach on Skillshare


If you have friends who are willing to teach on Skillshare like you, you can refer them to the platform. When they sign up and publish their first class, you will get a bonus of $50.

If you’re interested to know how Skillshare charges its students, now’s the time for it.

Teaching Your Class on Skillshare


What Can You Teach on Skillshare?

There are basically four main categories under which you can teach,

  • Creative
  • Business
  • Technology
  • Lifestyle

You can teach any topic that you’re comfortable with, under these categories. Let’s say you’re good in graphic designing, you publish a graphic design course under the Creative category and if you’re good at coding you can submit a course under Technology. Likewise, anything that you feel that will attract the Skillshare audience, you can teach.

According to Skillshare, their most popular topics are illustration, graphic design, writing, photography, branding, and creative freelancing.

Topics You Can’t Teach

However, according to the Skillshare guidelines you are not permitted to teach certain topics on their platform. These include classes that are focused on:

  • Passive income business strategies, or amassing fast followers
  • Dating, romance, or relationships 
  • Teaching on other educational platforms
  • Showing students how to resell existing products or services (such as drop-shipping or multi-level marketing)
  • Medical content or that are related to the medical field 
  • Mathematics, standardized testing, physical and life sciences, or classical engineering 
  • Religion, spirituality, politics
  • Fitness and/or exercise
  • Pet care (e.g. grooming, training)
  • Beauty regimens or cosmetology

How Do I Sell a Course on Skillshare?


Becoming a Skillshare teacher is a simple and straightforward process, consisting of 4 steps. Let’s walk through all 4 steps to understand how to become a successful teacher on Skillshare.

Step 1 – Plan

This is the phase where you choose your topic and get your thoughts organized on how to present your topic, and outline the video lessons.

This is perhaps one of the most important steps to be successful on the platform. Students are there to learn, so make sure you choose an interesting topic and provide value.

Step 2 – Produce

This is where you initiate your plans and produce the course content with the necessary tools and equipment. 

If you’ve never produced a video in your life, this process might be a little intimidating for you, but once you start on it, it’ll be bread and butter for you. 

But how do you succeed on Skillshare? Let me share some useful actionable tips to produce high-quality video courses that will definitely set you up for success.

Tip #1: Teach with confidence

Confidence is the key to success, so try to be clear and relaxed in front of the camera. Don’t be afraid to speak casually, smile, and show your personality – students love seeing a teacher who’s confident and friendly, rather than overly formal and serious.

Here are some tips and tricks to appear comfortable and confident on the camera:

  • Think of your video course as a conversation, rather than a lecture and use your hands while talking, like you normally would.
  • Look directly into the camera as if you’re speaking directly to your students. Imagining that you’re speaking to someone specific helps with this one a lot.
  • Speak clearly and naturally – allow yourself to be casual and let your tone go up and down. Showing enthusiasm and excitement is what makes video lessons more interesting.
  • Avoid “ums” and “ahs” in your speech. And if they still sneak in, just do a quick retake, or edit them out later.
  • Keep track of your outline so that you stick to talking points and not ramble or get off-track.
  • Smile! Smiling is the easiest way to set a friendly and relaxed tone for your class.

Tip #2: Equipment

The right equipment is critical for producing high-quality video classes. However, “right” doesn’t always mean expensive. 

You can take your videos using just your smartphone. Just make sure that you have enough natural lighting in the room, or add some led lighting. 

Pro tip: Use your headset to maximize the quality of your audio.

Alternatively, you can record your video lessons using the webcam on your PC or laptop.

If you have professional equipment like a camera, lights, and microphone, you can use those as well.

Tip #3: Editing your class

To get the best quality and cut out any bloopers from your video, you’ll need to use editing tools. 

If you’ve never used them before, don’t worry, you don’t have to be a pro video editor. The internet has all the information you need to learn basic editing skills. You can also find courses on Skillshare or Udemy that may help you develop this skill.

Here’s the list of the best video editors you can use:

For MacFor Windows
iMovie (Free)
DaVinci Resolve (Free)
ScreenFlow ($99)
Final Cut Pro ($299)
Adobe Premiere Pro ($21/month)
DaVinci Resolve (Free)
VSDC (Free)
Filmora (Free + Paid Version) 
Lightworks (Free + Paid Version) 
Camtasia ($199)
Adobe Premiere Pro ($21/month)

Step 3 – Publish

After you’ve done producing your course videos, then it’s time to publish them for the students to access.

At this step, you’ll be wrapping your course together, meaning you’ll need to add the following details to your course listing:

  • Class title
  • Lesson titles
  • Cover image
  • Class description
  • Class category
  • Relevant tags to your topic so that people can find your course when they search for what they want
  • Your teacher profile 

Step 4 – Promote

Promote your videos to your friends, family, or your audience outside Skillshare. 

Plus, promoting your courses outside Skillshare can help you a great deal in both earning royalties and getting referral bonuses.

Skillshare Tips


Let me share some general tips that might help you become a successful Skillshare teacher. 

Bring Your A-Game

While the internet is overloaded with content that could provide you with basic information, spending a few hours on Google and YouTube won’t do if you want to be a successful teacher on Skillshare.

There are many reputable professionals on Skillshare, teaching their respective areas. So if you want to get more Premium minutes on your videos, try to choose an area that you are already sound on. You can polish this up with some research and then get to the course creation.

Choosing a popular topic is vital to earning more revenue on Skillshare. Do some research yourself on what the popular topics are at the moment, and then decide on your topic. 

Also, it is wise to check out courses of other successful teachers, to get an idea of how they choose topics and what they do to promote.

Publish Frequently

If you want more engagement and views on your videos, you definitely have to publish videos frequently.

Market Your Classes Outside of Skillshare

If you have an audience outside Skillshare, that’s great! You can start marketing your classes to them. You can do this the other way too, meaning you can get some students of your class to check out your blog or website in order to further engage with them. So the next time you launch a new Skillshare course, you can invite your loyal audience to check it out on the platform.

Even if you don’t have an audience, you can always refer your courses to your friends, family, or even share on social media.

Pro tip: Share your Skillshare course on LinkedIn and topic-specific Facebook groups – where your potential students are.

Become a Brand

Think of yourself as a content creator on YouTube. Always keep in your mind, that your content matters, but the way you present it matters even more. 

Try to make use of intros, logos, artificial lighting, backgrounds, or anything that will add a better color to your videos.

Skillshare Support


Many teachers and students say the support staff of Skillshare is very friendly. Still, most reviewers say it’s really hard to get in touch with one of them.

There are 2 ways to reach out to the Skillshare customer support:

  1. Email at teach@skillshare.com 
  2. Submit your issue on Skillshare Help Center. Simply select the category of your issue, type in more details, and click on the submit button. Once you do that, the Skillshare customer support will email you the solution.

Skillshare also has a FAQ page for teachers, where you can find instructional articles to help you out. So before submitting a ticket to Skillshare support, I’d recommend checking out the FAQ page first.

Skillshare Pros & Cons for Teachers


Pros

  • 2 ways of earning as a teacher – royalties and referrals
  • Skillshare has a rich community of engaged students
  • You can modify courses you’ve created for other platforms and publish them on Skillshare
  • You can create short bite-sized courses (20-60 minutes) which is really easy

Cons

  • No guarantee that you’ll earn revenue after publishing your course
  • Since there are many teachers on the platform, there’s a chance that your courses may go unnoticed

Skillshare Alternatives for Teachers


Skillshare vs. Udemy

Udemy Summary

  • Udemy markets your courses for you
  • Passive income opportunity – you create and publish your course once and it sells for unlimited times
  • Leverage the base of over 35 million online learners Udemy has
  • Udemy gives you insights into your target market

Just like Skillshare, Udemy is a famous platform letting you upload your courses and earn money when students purchase them. The only downside of Udemy compared to Skillshare is, the students have to pay for individual courses unlike on Skillshare. So if you don’t already have much experience teaching, it will take some time for you to start earning with Udemy.

Skillshare vs. Teachable

Teachable Summary

  • One-stop-shop platform helping you create, market and sell your online courses
  • Website customization opportunity – you have your custom domain and can choose your website template that matches your course look and feel
  • You can offer different payment options (Stripe or PayPal account)
  • Course completion certificates are offered on the Professional plan & up

Teachable is a go-to platform for teachers and is quite similar to Skillshare in the way it works. In fact, Teachable is a great platform if you’re already a teacher or thinking of becoming a full-time teacher. However for you to start teaching on Teachable, you have to pay a monthly fee, while Skillshare cost is absolutely none.

Skillshare vs. edX

edX is another popular platform students choose to learn new skills. Since most of the courses on edX are accredited, you don’t have the freedom of creating courses yourself the as you have on Skillshare.

Is Teaching on Skillshare Worth it?


Overall, teaching on Skillshare is a great option if you’re thinking of monetizing your expertise. It provides an easy way to upload your video courses and gives you different ways to earn money out of your classes.

What’s great about Skillshare is that you can leverage its audience – 

Pro tip: Publish your video courses on various platforms like Udemy and Teachable at once to diversify and maximize your teaching income.

Skillshare FAQ


Who Owns My Class Content?

You are the owner of your content if you created and published it yourself. You have the right to retain the full ownership and you are free to host them anywhere you want.

How Long Does it Take to Create a Class?

Typically it takes around 1-3 weeks to create a class. The Sooner you plan and outline your videos, the sooner you can create and publish.

Will Skillshare Promote My Class?

Skillshare promotes classes in weekly emails and their social media posts. Other than that, if your class appears high up on the ‘trending page’, your class will get featured on emails sent to the community.


Skillshare

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