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How to Develop Online Training Courses – A Short Guide (2024)

Thinking about developing an online training course, but not sure where to start? Let us show you.

By The Mighty Team

February 14, 2024

7 min read



    If you got some training to do, something to teach, chances are you thought about doing it online. With the advent of online training courses, more and more people are making the internet their classroom.

    And teachers are finding amazing opportunities online.

    That’s what happened for Lisa League. Lisa is a certified interior designer who realized that the qualifying exam to be an accredited designer was tough. Really tough. So tough that people were looking for help.

    And that's where Lisa saw an opportunity.

    After searching in vain for great resources to help her, she realized that she could build them. And so, she created QPractice, an online community with cohort-based courses to get members ready for the qualifying exam.

    Lisa’s story shows that there’s no limit to what online training courses can be dedicated to.

    And maybe you want a piece of that action!

    In this short guide, we're going to talk about how to develop online training courses. We'll walk you through things you should think about from the outside, and give you the steps to plan.

    If you want more support in building your online community, come join OUR Mighty Community for free and meet other new and established community owners! We’d love to meet you. Join for free!


    What is an online training course?

    An online training course is a type of online course that teaches a specific skill or competence virtually. Online training courses can be either synchronous or asynchronous (that is, live or pre-recorded), and can either be sold by a creator OR created by a company for their employees to access remotely.

    Benefits of online training courses

    • Scalable. Lots of people can take them.

    • Accessible. Can be accessed from pretty much everywhere.

    • Profitable. Selling online training can be a viable business.

    • Easy. Online course platforms have made it easier than ever to launch and host.

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    How to develop online training courses

    1. Find your Big Purpose

    When you're doing the work to develop an online training course, it's best to start with a clear understanding of what and who it's for.

    One of the best ways to think about this is what we call a Big Purpose. A Big Purpose is your raison d'être; it's the thing that will make people buy your training courses.

    And usually, there are three parts to it. First, who are your courses for? Second, what type of transformation will you take your students through? And finally, what will their results be?

    Here's a template for spinning up your own Big Purpose.

    Big Purpose- New Image

    2. Choose your Ideal Student

    The second thing that any successful online course needs is an Ideal Student. An Ideal Student is a person who will take your course and benefit from it.

    When you're thinking about developing online training courses, it's easy to think too broad. It’s easy to say, “It’s for everyone.”

    Resist the temptation. An Ideal Student should be a specific person with a specific problem that your online training courses will help with.

    Here are some questions you can ask to help identify your Ideal Students:

    • Where do they come from? What do they like? (Demographics)

    • What do they care about? What are they struggling with? What are they afraid of? (Psychographics)

    • What is it that makes you uniquely qualified to help them? Who would benefit from your unique story, skills, and experiences?

    As always, we’ve found that the best way to find Ideal Students is to go and interview some! Don’t assume people will sign up if you build the course. Make sure your hunch is right!

    3. Set your training objectives

    So if you know who your online training courses are for, and what they will get out of it, the next step can be getting a clear picture of what your course needs to do. We touched on this with the BIG Purpose.

    What will students get from being in your course?

    And what does your course need to cover to help them get it?

    Most online learning delivers one thing: a transformation. It might be big or small, but it should deliver a transformation.

    Getting clear on your objections helps you do this.

    Just a note, one of the cool things about online learning is that it can be really hands-on and practical. Resist the urge to share everything you know. And resist the urge to lecture students.

    Be really creative in getting your students to their objectives, and consider ways to make it fun and interactive.

    Mighty Networks - Graphics - Courses Paired Dark

    4. Plan your course

    The next step is to plan your course! Having that clear goal in mind will give you the power to build an outline that actually serves what your students need.

    As you're outlining, think about different ways you can deliver value. You're not limited to a course where you talk at the screen.

    How about adding an online community to your course? It makes it super valuable. Or, what about live events on a regular basis?

    Mighty Networks - Graphics - Achievement Academy - Events

    The way we deliver and consume courses is evolving all the time, so don't be afraid to be creative in how you build your online training course.

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    5. Market & Sell

    The next step is marketing and selling your course! But it's important to say that the order of these two things might shift a bit, depending on what type of course you teach. If your online training is going to be live, you can market and sell it first. If it's going to be pre-recorded, you might want to create it first.

    We actually love the possibility of pre-selling. It's a great way to validate your idea, and teaching the course live keeps the audience engaged. Plus, with the power of a modern course platform like Mighty, you can actually teach live and then host the recording in your community long-term.

    6. Deliver

    At some point, the time will come to deliver this thing! Hopefully, that's the fun part.

    If you are delivering it live, here are some tips for the big day:

    • Avoid scripting your course. It can make you sound too robotic. Try an outline instead.

    • Take lots of breaks and ask lots of questions. Make sure the audience is getting what they need.

    • Give space for the audience to participate. Try having a discussion or open time.

    • If possible, walk your audience through building something. For example, instead of talking about how to do Facebook ads, why not walk them through making their own?

    Mighty Networks - Graphics - Live Streaming - Miami

    Technical tips for your online training course

    • Check everything beforehand. Make sure your slides work if you have them, check your sound and video.

    • Sound is important. Almost more important than video. And it may be worth investing in a desktop condenser mic or lapel mic to produce good-quality sound.

    • If your face is on camera, sitting with your face to a window will produce a really great video quality - even on a phone.

    • Choose a really great course platform that will let you sell, deliver, and build relationships with your ideal students - all in one place.

    7. Learn and adapt

    Nobody's going to get it all right creating an online training course for the first time. So don't sweat it. Make sure you learn and grow, and improve your training with time.

    Here are a few ways to do that:

    • Watch your analytics. Analytics don't lie. They'll tell you where people are spending their time and where your audience is coming from.

    • Ask your students. Find out what's working for them and what isn't.

    • Try different things. Experiment with different delivery formats and content.

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    Secrets of successful online training courses

    • They have a clear big purpose and learning objectives.

    • They are marketed towards a specific Ideal Student.

    • They keep a tight focus on the material and deliver a transformation.

    • They use different types of content to help students be successful.


    If you are ready to design and launch your online training courses, we hope this little guide has helped.

    Don't overthink it. Chances are you got everything you need to run a great one.

    And if you are looking for a fantastic spot to host, come give Mighty a try. Our cultural software platform lets you bring courses, content, community, and commerce altogether. And with flexible Spaces you can mix in discussion forums, live events, live streaming, chat and messaging, and member profiles. Sell in 135 different currencies or monetize with token-gating. And there's a great app for every device.

    Mighty is an amazing partner in developing a successful online training course! And you can try it free for 14 days, no credit card required.

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