Online Tutoring Business: Advantages And Disadvantages
Start Your Own Online Tutoring Marketplace
The online tutoring business has taken over the traditional education system in the past few years. This has given rise to several business opportunities for people. While many independent tutors and companies offering tutoring services see this as a positive change in the industry, it also poses different kinds of threats to existing businesses.
What Is Online Tutoring?
Online tutoring is defined as a process of tutoring where learners and tutors interact with each other from geographically separate locations using online, networked, or virtual environments. However, in common terminology, online tutoring occurs when tutors register themselves on a marketplace/website and conduct classes on a variety of subjects for registered students/learners. The classes can be one-to-one or in a group.
Models Of Online Tutoring
Online tutoring can be broadly divided into the following models:
- Synchronous online tutoring
This involves a shared interface between tutor and learner(s) who are online at the same time. Video conferencing is the most common method of communication.
- Asynchronous online tutoring
Learning does not happen in real time. The tutor provides learner(s) with assignments or questionnaires, which the latter can submit in the near future, before a specified time. This model of tutoring is more suited for learners who want to learn at their pace or have busy schedules.
Additionally, certain websites use a mix of synchronous and asynchronous learning models. They can be described as operating under a hybrid model.
What Are The Positives From An Entrepreneurial Perspective?
A lot of research, planning, and execution goes into the building of an online tutoring platform. Hence, the availability of online tutoring technology is beneficial for tutoring companies and tutors that are new to the market as it opens a door to a much larger audience, is cost-effective, offers more flexibility, and so on. Discussed below are the advantages of online tutoring from a business perspective.
1. Potential Access To The Global Market
Traditional tutoring institutions are limited by geographical boundaries. If they were to serve students outside of their geographical area, it would not be cost-effective due to the time constraints related to transportation. On the other hand, online tutoring businesses do not face this limitation. They can reach anybody across the globe with an internet connection, thereby giving an online tutoring business heightened exposure to a global audience. An online tutoring business can also hire tutors from a much larger area and may also be successful in finding Subject Matter Experts.
2. Reduced Operating Costs
The operating costs of running an online tutoring business are less when compared to traditional tutoring. Eliminated costs come in the form of transportation, building leases, maintenance, and so on. Furthermore, by using the internet you can place your online tutoring services right in front of your target audience, without the help of a formal marketing agency whose services come at a much greater cost.
3. Customer Data
To provide quality tutoring services, you need to know your audience, their preferences and needs. When students/learners log in, valuable information is gathered. This includes location details, contact details, age, and more. Additionally, other aspects like the impact and experience of a tutoring program can be measured by collecting information from individuals through questionnaires. All of these details help in sending personalized notifications to learners. These include lucrative offers like discounts on courses and more, and can help in building a loyal customer base.
4. More Flexibility
An online tutoring business has more flexibility since the students who are to be taught are in different time zones. This offers independent tutors/stakeholders a chance to adjust their plans and fit their tutoring into their personal or professional schedules.
5. High Demand
Online tutoring has become a popular solution to fill in the gaps caused by the pandemic. Struggling students (and their parents) are searching for online private tutors so that the students can get better grades in class. This will ultimately prepare students for academic and future success. Also, there is a rapid surge in the adoption of online tutoring due to its cost-effectiveness and convenience. Hence, online tutoring is the way forward.
What Are The Challenges From An Entrepreneurial Perspective?
Online tutoring can also pose a lot of challenges. We will take a look at the disadvantages below.
1. Lower Entry Barriers
The easy setup of an online tutoring business is a big benefit. But for those already established in the business, this is not a positive, as it makes it easier for new online tutoring businesses to enter the market and compete. This results in more price competition and lower profit margins.
2. Competition From Other Markets And Countries
Running an online tutoring business is not an easy task due to the steep competition involved in the world of the internet. As online tutoring overcomes geographical barriers, it also means that instead of facing competition only from other tutoring companies in their immediate market, the competition also comes from other parts of the world. Hence, it is pivotal to implement correct business strategies, otherwise the online tutoring business could face substantial losses.
3. Improvements In IT Infrastructure Are Required
The face-to-face setting in a traditional classroom levels a lot of differences, because students in the same class get the same delivery. But online tutoring widens the digital divide. While most individuals have a system and a stable internet connection at home, many students who require tutoring online do not have the required IT infrastructure. This means that if your business wants to provide online tutoring only, there will be many students/learners that you will not be able to reach.
Although online tutoring is effective, there are still certain subjects where face-to-face communication and explanation of concepts on a sheet of paper are more effective. Here, one could argue that software for conferencing might be good, but it cannot handle a few key functionalities, such as accommodating large class sizes while also providing a personalized experience. Hence, it is challenging to keep students engaged when tutoring online and this might adversely affect their productivity and progress.
Making data secure should be central to the thinking of any online tutoring business owner. Otherwise, it can result in identity theft, loss of intellectual property, data tampering, fraud, and more. This can also result in fatally damaging the reputation of your online tutoring business. Hence, you must invest in the latest security systems to protect your online tutoring website and transaction processes.
The online tutoring business has huge potential in terms of being profitable. But if you are thinking of tutoring or starting a tutoring business online, you must consider all the benefits and drawbacks mentioned above. Armed with this knowledge, you’ll be able to make informed choices and effectively implement business strategies.
Start Your Own Online Tutoring Marketplace The online tutoring business has taken over the traditional education system in the past few years. This has given rise to several business opportunities for people. While many independent tutors and companies offering tutoring services see this as a positive change in the industry, it also poses different kinds…
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