Is Udemy worth it? Is it worth your money and time?
The short answer to that question is this: it depends on your goals.
Personally, when I first wanted to start an online business, I was a broke graduate student with little money to spare. I was beyond thrilled when I found a platform that could teach me those first skills I needed to establish myself as an online business owner.
I owe a lot to the Udemy and thus cannot say it is not worth it.
There are however 2 clear concerns with the platform that can be a turn off. And understandably so.
- Because it is an open platform and anyone and everyone could create and upload a course on there, as is to be expected, the quality of courses can vary widely. This means that while you can get a great course that goes in-depth into a topic, you can buy another course that is nothing but fluff.
- From a course owner stand point, it can be a drag to upload your courses to Udemy. Unless you have a pre-existing audience that you can drive to your courses, sales can be slow at first and it usually takes A LOT of people to make a significant amount of money. Most of the successful course owners on Udemy have multiple (10+) courses or they were already big names when they came onto the platform.
In spite of these concerns, I personally think if you are on a budget and but would still like to get an education on a topic-in my case it was learning how to build a business online-Udemy might be worth it for you.
3 guidelines you can use when choosing a course on Udemy
- Reviews. What are people saying about the course? Yes, you will have that ONE person who gives a one-star and a vague review like “I hate this course” but look at the 4-star reviews. What do those say? Note that I didn’t say look at the 5-star reviews because we all know that those can be rigged as well.
- Look for a course that has at least an overall 4-star rating.
- Look for a course that has at least 100 students. I am not saying this to bash course owners who have less than 100 students, but having at least 100 students in the course can be a good indicator that the course will be worth your time and money.
BONUS GUIDELINE: What brand has the course owner built beyond Udemy? Building a strong personal brand outside of Udemy is an indicator to me that the course owner is well worth investing into.
In fact, I recently complied my own list of 91 best Udemy courses for side hustlers and solopreneurs using these criteria.
10 Udemy Courses Totally Worth Your Time & Money
I hand-curated these based on the following factors:
- The length of time the instructor has been in business-not to say there are not some amazing newbies but these folks have in fact stood the test of time
- Have at least a 4-star rating on the Udemy Marketplace
- Have demonstrated results of the things they teach
- I have interacted with a few of these individuals personally (namely: Nick Loper, Alex Genadinik and Ron Stefanski) and they are good people who do want to see others succeed. They did not ask me to promote their courses either. Again, this is where personal branding becomes important.
So if you are on a budget, need to delve into some Udemy courses and need a point in the right direction, here 10 courses doing it right.
*The links below are affiliate links. If you click through and buy a course on Udemy, I will receive a commission at no extra cost to you.**
Kindle Launch Plan – Nick Loper
I took this course and found it super helpful and actually will be delving more into Kindle self-publishing later on this year. It also helps that Nick himself has self-published 9 books. If you love writing and plan to make it an income stream in the future, this course will be well- worth your time.
How to create a niche website that’s a successful business – Ron Stefanski
Ron and I used to be in a mastermind together and it has been amazing to watch his growth over the years. These days he rakes in $5,000-$10,000 in revenue from his niche websites all while living in Brazil. Not some bad change if you ask me.
Lisa was one of the first Youtubers I encountered 5 years ago when I first discovered online business. I looked over her channel recently and she has videos from 10 years ago – before “Youtuber” was even a noun.
Lisa showed up on my radar after I had typed “what is affiliate marketing” in the Google Search bar and came across her video!
So yes, you can learn A LOT from this girl about affiliate marketing.
Create Images, Upload & Earn With Spreadshirt – Lisa Irby
Yes, it is a legit thing you can get into. Lisa knows and she teaches.
ConvertKit – Email Marketing for Online Entrepreneurs – Dennis J. Smith
I have followed Dennis J Smith since I discovered Udemy and he has proven over time to be a genuine person. He has several courses but this one stands out to me. Usually people start with software and get super overwhelmed by all the intricacies.
Dennis wanted to relieve you of that pain when it comes to Convertkit and so created the course. Genius.
How to stop procrastinating – Alex Genadink
I am not even sure how that happened. We just chatted a little bit after that on Twitter and intrigued when he told me he was earning a full-time income from selling courses online. Obviously, if he procrastinated a lot, he would not have created over 100 courses on Udemy. So yes, when Alex says he can teach you how to stop procrastinating, I believe him.
How to sell more handmade, affiliate & digital products NOW! – Alex Genadinik
In the world of internet marketing and entrepreneurship, I think it is safe to say that Seth Godin is a worthy king. He has been creating immense value through his blog for over a decade, published several truly epic books and unlike certain online celebrities, his popularity is not hyped – he , in fact, is the real deal.
Seth Godin teaching value creation so that we as business owners serve in ways that make profit just a natural by-product of al the value we provide ? I’m game.
If I can be half as great as he is when I am 73, it would knock my socks off ! Haha.
I have enjoyed Brian Tracy’s books in the past and he never fails to give great advice on productivity, sales, leadership, entrepreneurship and thought leadership.
Who else can you learn the art of actively selling your brand to epically proportional levels from ? This might be a little bit much for solo bosses like you and I but there are certainly business lessons in marketing here we can all benefit from.
Special Mentions : 2 Bonus Courses Which Are Not on Udemy
I know the title specifically mentions Udemy however, this conversation would not be complete if I did not mention these two non-Udemy classes that have literally changed my life and brought me a lot of income this year particularly.
Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing – I made the $200 I spent on it back in a few weeks
Earn More Writing – I earned the money I spent on this course in a month .
I cannot over-emphasize the power of investing in quality courses from people who have done excellently themselves. These two PLUS the 10 from Udemy I mention above over-qualify in this department.
So is Udemy worth it?
I say it is worth it if you’re just starting out and are cash-strapped, it is.
There are a number of good quality courses on the platform; you just have to do your research. I shared 10 of them with you here.
On the other hand, if you need more in-depth information to really grow your business, you will need to look elsewhere for that knowledge.
Let me know your thoughts about Udemy in the comments as well.
This post was originally published on August 24, 2017. It was updated on February 9 2019.