How to Create Your Marketplace For Online Tutoring as a Side Hustle in the USA

Raena Mazahernasab
Written by Raena Mazahernasab
Posted on August 01, 2023

In today's fast-paced digital age, opportunities for flexible and rewarding side hustles have become increasingly popular. Online tutoring marketplaces have emerged as a prime avenue for individuals looking to share their expertise and earn extra income. You may be a passionate educator, subject matter expert, or simply have valuable knowledge to impart. So, this guide will walk you through the step-by-step process of building your very own online tutoring platform.

From advertising tools to finding tutors, we'll explore everything necessary to establishโ€ฆ

From advertising tools to finding tutors, we'll explore everything necessary to establish a successful and thriving online tutoring marketplace tailored to the American audience. So, if you're ready to embark on a journey of empowering students and generating supplemental income, let's dive in!

How is the condition of marketplaces for online tutoring in the USA?

The COVID-19 pandemic, led to widespread school closures and the adoption of remote learning. So, it played a crucial role in boosting the demand for online tutoring services. Many parents and students turned to online platforms to bridge the learning gaps and provide additional support outside traditional classroom settings.

During this period, several factors contributed to the positive condition of the online tutoring market, such as:

  • Increased demand

  • Technological advancements

  • Flexibility and convenience

  • Diverse subject options

  • Tutor diversity

  • Positive reviews and testimonials

It's important to note that market conditions can change rapidly, and the situation might be different at the current date. Many factors can influence the online tutoring market. Therefore, it's recommended to conduct up-to-date research to assess the current condition of the marketplace before diving into the business of creating an online tutoring platform.

What is the biggest challenge of creating a marketplace for online tutoring?

Creating a marketplace for online tutoring comes with its set of challenges, but one of the biggest hurdles is building a critical mass of both tutors and students. The success of any marketplace heavily depends on having a large and diverse user base that facilitates meaningful interactions and transactions. Here are some key aspects that contribute to this challenge:

Attracting Tutors: Convincing experienced and qualified tutors to join your platform can be challenging, especially when there are already established online tutoring platforms available.

Retaining Tutors: Even if you manage to attract tutors to your platform, retaining them can be another challenge. They might lose interest in continuing on your platform if they donโ€™t get enough students or face difficulties

Attracting Students: On the other side of the marketplace, attracting students to register and use your platform is equally challenging. You need to offer a compelling value proposition to entice students to choose your platform over others.

Building Trust: Trust is crucial in any online marketplace, especially in education. Parents and students need to trust the tutors and the platform to ensure a safe and effective learning environment.

Quality Control: Ensuring the quality of tutors and their teaching methods is essential to maintain a positive reputation for your platform.

Competing with Established Platforms: Competing with well-established online tutoring platforms can be daunting, as they likely have larger user bases, brand recognition, and marketing resources.

Regulations and Compliance: Depending on your location and the regions, there might be specific regulations and compliance requirements related to education and online marketplaces. But donโ€™t worry, weโ€™ll cover that too!

Can you advertise your marketplace for online tutoring for free?

While paid advertising can often yield faster results, free advertising can still be effective in reaching your target audience. Itโ€™s even more useful when you're just starting and have a limited budget. Here are some free advertising methods to promote your online tutoring marketplace:

Social Media Marketing

Use social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn to create business profiles/pages. Regularly post engaging content related to education, learning tips, success stories, and updates about your tutoring marketplace. Interact with your followers, answer their queries, and encourage them to share your content to expand your reach.

Content Marketing

Start a blog on your tutoring marketplace's website and publish high-quality, informative content relevant to your target audience. This can include educational articles, study guides, subject-specific tips, and industry news. Well-optimized content can also improve your website's search engine rankings, driving organic traffic.

Email Marketing

Build an email list by offering valuable resources or incentives to users who sign up on your platform. Send regular newsletters and updates to keep users engaged and informed about tutoring opportunities, special offers, and new features.

Referral Program

Implement a referral program where existing users can earn rewards or discounts for referring new students or tutors to your platform. Word-of-mouth marketing through satisfied users can be a powerful tool.

Partnerships and Collaborations

Collaborate with educational institutions, schools, colleges, and other related organizations. Offer them special deals or benefits for promoting your tutoring platform to their students.

Online Forums and Communities

Participate in online forums, educational groups, and communities related to tutoring and education. Engage in discussions, offer valuable insights, and discreetly promote your platform when relevant.

Video Content

Create educational and promotional videos and upload them to platforms like YouTube. Video content can be engaging and help establish your platform's credibility.

Press Releases

Write and distribute press releases about your tutoring marketplace's launch, updates, or achievements. This can get you coverage in local news outlets and educational publications.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Optimize your website for relevant keywords and phrases to improve its visibility on search engines like Google. This can drive organic traffic to your platform.

While free advertising is cost-effective, it often requires consistent effort and time to see significant results. A combination of free and paid advertising can create a well-rounded marketing strategy for your online tutoring marketplace. Additionally, always ensure that your advertising complies with the terms and policies of the platforms you use to avoid any issues.

How to find tutors and online courses for your marketplace?

Finding tutors and online courses for your marketplace requires a proactive approach. You need to attract skilled educators and offer a diverse range of subjects and expertise to your students. Here are some steps to help you in the process:

  1. Establish Clear Guidelines: Define the criteria for tutors and courses on your marketplace. Determine the qualifications, experience, and expertise you expect from tutors. Set guidelines for course content, format, and delivery methods.

  2. Reach Out to Educators and Experts: Actively approach qualified educators, teachers, subject matter experts, and professionals who might be interested in offering their services on your platform. You can use professional networking platforms, educational forums, and social media to connect with potential tutors.

  3. Advertise Open Positions: Post job listings or advertisements seeking tutors for your online tutoring marketplace on relevant job boards, university career centers, and educational websites. Be clear about the benefits of joining your platform and the support you offer to tutors.

  4. Offer Incentives: Provide incentives to tutors to join your marketplace. This could include competitive commission rates, flexible working hours, promotional opportunities, or access to a large student base.

  5. Networking Events: Attend educational conferences, webinars, and networking events to connect with educators and professionals who might be interested in offering their courses on your platform.

  6. Partnerships with Educational Institutions: Collaborate with schools, colleges, universities, and educational organizations to onboard their teachers as tutors. Offer exclusive deals to their students, which can attract more tutors and students to your platform.

  7. User Referrals: Encourage existing tutors and students on your platform to refer potential tutors or course creators. Implement a referral program with incentives to motivate them to bring in new talent.

  8. Offer Course Creation Tools: Provide user-friendly tools and resources that make it easy for educators to create and upload their courses to your platform. Simplify the process and ensure they have all the support they need to publish quality content.

  9. Marketplace Visibility: As your marketplace grows and gains traction, tutors will be more likely to approach you directly. Focus on building a strong online presence through marketing and search engine optimization to attract potential tutors and course creators.

  10. Quality Assurance: Emphasize the importance of quality in courses and tutoring services. Conduct screening or interviews to assess the proficiency and teaching abilities of potential tutors.

  11. Continuous Feedback: Encourage feedback from tutors and students on your platform. Listen to their suggestions and concerns to improve your marketplace and attract more educators.

What is the return policy for marketplaces in the USA?

The return policy for marketplaces of online tutoring in the USA can vary depending on the specific platform and its terms of service. Unlike physical products, online tutoring services involve intangible knowledge and time-based interactions, which can make return policies more complex. However, some platforms may offer guarantees or refunds under certain circumstances. Here are some common scenarios and considerations related to return policies for online tutoring marketplaces:

  • Satisfaction Guarantee: Some platforms may offer a satisfaction guarantee to students who are not happy with their tutoring session. This could involve offering a partial or full refund or providing additional tutoring sessions at no extra cost.

  • Tutor No-Show: If a tutor fails to attend a scheduled session without proper notice, the platform might offer a refund or credit to the student.

  • Technical Issues: In cases where technical problems prevent a tutoring session from taking place or disrupt the quality of the session significantly, the platform might provide a refund or a rescheduled session.

  • Quality of Service: If a student feels that the tutoring session did not meet the expected quality or did not cover the promised material, the platform may consider offering a refund or an alternative tutor.

  • Course Content Discrepancies: For online courses, if the content provided significantly deviates from what was promised or advertised, the platform may consider issuing a refund or adjusting the course price.

It's important to note that refund policies should be clearly stated and transparently communicated to both tutors and students before they engage in any transactions on the platform. The policies should also comply with applicable laws and regulations related to consumer rights and online transactions.

While some platforms may have lenient return policies to attract and retain users, others may have more stringent policies to prevent misuse and fraudulent claims. The balance between being customer-friendly and ensuring the sustainability of the platform is essential.

If you are planning to create an online tutoring marketplace in the USA, it's crucial to consult with legal experts to ensure your return and refund policies are compliant with consumer protection laws. Additionally, keep in mind that return policies should be adaptable and subject to updates as your marketplace evolves and grows.

What are the examples of the best marketplaces for online tutoring?

Throughout the past few years, several online tutoring marketplaces have gained popularity and are considered among the best in the industry. Here are some examples of well-regarded online tutoring marketplaces:

  • Learnhub

  • Wyzant

  • Chegg

  • Varsity Tutors


  • Skooli

  • Preply

  • Superprof

How to support students after using your online courses?

Supporting students after they have completed your online courses is crucial for maintaining a positive learning experience and fostering long-term engagement. You can send out surveys to gather feedback from students about their learning experiences. Ask for suggestions on improving the course and inquire about any additional support they might need.

Creating an online community also helps your students interact with each other, ask questions, and share their experiences. This forum can also serve as a platform for students to network and collaborate. Also, keep in touch with students through periodic email newsletters. Share updates about new courses, relevant resources, and upcoming events related to the subject matter.

Offer personalized feedback on assignments or projects submitted by students, even after the course has ended. This demonstrates your continued interest in their progress. Moreover, facilitate networking opportunities for students within the course community or with industry professionals in the relevant field.

Finally, provide certificates of completion or digital badges to students who finish the course. These credentials can boost their confidence and add value to their resumes. By providing ongoing support and resources, you can create a sense of community and foster a positive learning environment that encourages students to stay engaged and continue their educational journey with your platform. Happy and satisfied students are more likely to recommend your courses to others and even return for more advanced learning opportunities in the future.

What do you need to know about the sales regulation of selling online tutoring in the USA?

Selling online tutoring in the USA may be subject to various sales regulations and legal considerations. It's essential to understand and comply with these regulations to ensure that your online tutoring marketplace operates lawfully and ethically. Here are some key aspects to consider:

  1. Business Registration: Ensure that your online tutoring marketplace is registered as a legal business entity. This may involve registering as a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, or corporation, depending on your business structure.

  2. Sales Tax: Sales tax regulations vary from state to state in the USA. Determine whether your online tutoring services are subject to sales tax in the states where your customers are located. You may need to collect and remit sales tax to the relevant state authorities.

  3. Consumer Protection Laws: Comply with federal and state consumer protection laws. These laws govern how you advertise your services, handle refunds, manage customer complaints, and protect consumer privacy.

  4. Contractual Agreements: Use clear and comprehensive contractual agreements with your tutors and students. The agreements should outline the terms and conditions of the tutoring services, payment details, cancellation policies, and any other relevant provisions.

  5. Data Privacy and Security: As an online platform, you'll be collecting and handling personal information from both tutors and students. Comply with data privacy laws, such as the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) or the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) if you have customers from the European Union.

  6. Accessibility Compliance: Ensure that your online platform is accessible to individuals with disabilities in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other applicable accessibility laws.

  7. Intellectual Property Rights: Establish policies regarding intellectual property rights, including copyright protection for course materials, to prevent unauthorized use or distribution of copyrighted content.

  8. Age Verification: If your tutoring platform caters to minors, have a process in place to verify the age of users and obtain parental consent where necessary.

  9. Advertising Regulations: Adhere to Federal Trade Commission (FTC) guidelines for truthful and transparent advertising. Avoid making false claims about the effectiveness of your tutoring services.

  10. Anti-Discrimination Laws: Ensure that your platform does not discriminate against users based on protected characteristics, such as race, gender, religion, or disability.

  11. Refund and Cancellation Policies: Clearly communicate your refund and cancellation policies to tutors and students to avoid disputes and potential legal issues.

  12. Terms of Service and Privacy Policy: Have comprehensive and easily accessible Terms of Service and Privacy Policy on your website that detail your platform's rules, user responsibilities, and data handling practices.

To navigate the sales regulations effectively, it's highly recommended to consult with legal professionals or business advisors with expertise in online education and e-commerce. They can help you understand the specific legal requirements that apply to your online tutoring marketplace. They can ensure that your business operations remain compliant with relevant laws and regulations.

How does Selldone help you create a marketplace for online tutoring in the USA?

Selldone is a comprehensive e-commerce platform that allows users to create and manage online stores. Selldone provides various features for building an e-commerce store, like a marketplace for online tutoring in the USA. So, you will find every feature you need to start your online business such as:

  • Multi-Vendor Marketplace: Selldone makes it easy for marketplace owners to bring onboard and handle multiple vendors effortlessly. For your marketplace, each tutor gets their own panel to manage courses, inventory, and orders independently. This feature ensures a smooth and efficient process, allowing marketplace owners to expand their platform while giving tutors a user-friendly interface to showcase and sell online courses effectively.

  • Supporting Various Types of Products: The marketplace owners are able to add any type of products, such as physical, services, virtual, and files. So, a wider range of customers will be attracted to the marketplace.

  • Support for Educational Content: Features that support the upload and delivery of educational content, such as video lessons, interactive quizzes, and downloadable resources.

  • Tax Calculation: The tax management system helps tutors set up and adjust tax rates according to the relevant tax laws. It offers tools to create tax rules, like rates for various regions, countries, or specific products or services.

  • Course Listing and Management: Tools for tutors to create and manage their online courses, including uploading course materials, setting prices, and tracking student progress.

  • Payment and Commission Management: The platform has a strong payment system that enables tutors to receive direct payments. Additionally, the marketplace owner can apply a commission on each transaction based on different categories.

  • Auto-payment with Stripe Connect Integration: With Stripe Connect, marketplaces can receive payments from customers. It can also automatically pay out a portion to the tutors.

What do our customers say about us?

Here is some feedback from the marketplace owners who have trusted Selldone:

From Producthunt:

From Capterra:

From Capterra:

Make Your Business Online By The Best Noโ€”Code & Noโ€”Plugin Solution In The Market.

30 Day Money-Back Guarantee

Say goodbye to your low online sales rate!

Do I need to be an educator or tutor myself to create an online tutoring marketplace?

No, you don't need to be an educator or tutor yourself. However, having some knowledge of the education industry or subject matter can be beneficial in understanding the needs of tutors and students.

What is the best pricing model for an online tutoring marketplace?

Common pricing models include commission-based (taking a percentage of each tutor's earnings), subscription-based (tutors pay a regular fee to use the platform), or a combination of both. Choose a model that aligns with your marketplace's goals.

How can I ensure the quality of tutors on my platform?

Create a careful vetting process, conduct background checks, and request qualifications and certifications from tutors. Encourage student reviews and feedback to maintain quality standards.

Can I run the marketplace part-time as a side hustle while working a full-time job?

Yes, running an online tutoring marketplace can be managed as a part-time side hustle. However, it will require dedication, time management, and proper planning to ensure success.

Raena Mazahernasab
Written by Raena Mazahernasab
Published at: August 01, 2023 August 01, 2023

More insight about How to Create Your Marketplace For Online Tutoring as a Side Hustle in the USA

More insight about How to Create Your Marketplace For Online Tutoring as a Side Hustle in the USA