Are you looking to make some money alongside your full-time responsibilities? Look no further than our side hustle series. Today, we delve into the world of tutoring. Are you interested in a rewarding side hustle, which gives you ultimate flexibility and helps you make a positive impact? Tutoring may be the job for you.
What skills do you need to tutor?
Tutoring is teaching one or a small group of students about a certain subject. A common misconception is that tutors should be teachers or experts in their subject field to be able to tutor. However, this is not necessarily true, a good tutor has a few key skills such as:
- A great understanding of your chosen subject
- Personal skills to teach, such as patience, enthusiasm, and a positive attitude
- Being well-organised and punctual
- Understanding your country’s qualifications and exams and their marking structure i.e. GSCEs and the differing examination bodies.
- Being personable and trustworthy
Having good interpersonal skills is key to being a tutor. Most students who require a tutor may be feeling embarrassed or low in confidence about their understanding of the subject, therefore being kind, patient and trustworthy is key.
If you think you have the skills above, you may excel in the field.
What do I need to know before starting a tutoring business?
Like any side hustle or business, having a set-out business plan will help your venture run smoothly and allow you to have a laid out structure.
1. Choose what to teach
Your business plan should include things such as what you’ll teach, and at what level- the higher qualification you have the higher the level you can teach to, allowing you to have a wider audience. For example, if you have an MSC in Maths, you can comfortably teach up to Undergraduate Maths.
2. Choose your prices and make a pricing plan
Secondly, you may want to think about a pricing plan. Initially, to acquire customers and as your skills as a tutor are not yet fine-tuned, you may charge less. But as you grow your skills you can start to raise prices. It is also important to consider if you’ll charge more for group classes and for higher subject levels.
Moreover, you may want to see what other tutors in your area are charging. You may decide to be competitive and charge less, or if you believe you provide a more premium service you may consider charging more.
3. Choose where to tutor from
Another aspect to consider is choosing where to tutor may affect your price and services. If you travel to your clients, you have to consider travelling costs however, this can be more convenient for your students. You may also choose to tutor online, which is low cost but can be less personal and effective in driving results. However, by teaching online you can widen your pool of students and even have an international client base.
4. Consider the legal aspects
Finally, if you are teaching children or vulnerable people it may be in your best interest to get a DBS certificate. This is not a legal requirement, however, most parents would prefer to see a fully checked DBS certificate. Secondly, it adds extra legitimacy to your business.
On the note of legitimacy, you may want to consider incorporating your business as a Limited Company. Whilst you can run a tutoring business as a sole trader, being a company offers your personal bank account and credit protection from your business. Your business becomes a separate legal entity from yourself. Secondly, being a limited company adds a level of prestige and professionality. If you choose to promote your business from a side hustle to a full-time gig, you may want to start employing other tutors and a limited company structure is better for growth.
How do I market my tutoring side hustle?
Tutoring businesses mainly gain traction from word of mouth, which is why it is essential to make sure you are delivering a good service to your students and gaining a great reputation.
When it comes to marketing make sure to explore various strategies such as word-of-mouth referrals, online and offline advertising, and joining tutoring platforms or networks. You may want to engage with local community groups on Facebook or apps such as Nextdoor.
Utilising testimonials in your marketing will help you attract new students. Try using websites such as Canva to make an eye-catching poster for both online and offline use. You can also ask friends and family to spread the word about your tutoring services.
You may want to consider setting up your own website too, there are many easy website creation options available. Such as WordPress, Wix or Squarespace. Your website doesn’t have to be incredibly technical, but it should reflect yourself and your services. A few useful pages to include on your site can be:
- About Me– which goes over your qualifications, DBS check, any additional certifications, something about yourself and maybe a professional image of you.
- Testimonials- which include positive reviews of your services, maybe even some before and after of your student’s grades or exam results.
- Contact Me- this includes all of your contact details (email and/or phone).
You can add as many pages to your site, however, the most useful pages for your side hustle will be the ones above.
Final considerations for your tutoring side hustle
As a business, you’ll have to make sure your books are all legal and compliant with the law. Follow any tax requirements, or if you choose to incorporate make sure you’re filing your yearly annual accounts and confirmation statement.
If you are unsure whether you should incorporate your business, read our blog here on the what and why of becoming a limited company vs sole trader.
Now, you may be thinking this is a lot for a simple side hustle, but most administration or bookkeeping can be digitalised now, it may be that once a month you’ll have to spend a few hours making sure your business is running smoothly. By picking the right kind of services you can optimise your admin work. Opting for business-friendly banks such as Tide, ANNA, or Cashplus will help save you hours of invoicing time due to its compatibility with bookkeeping services such as FreeAgent. All in all, by picking the right software your business can run smoothly with just a small time commitment.
Tutoring can be the perfect side hustle if you are looking for an empowering and fulfilling job. With the right strategy and execution, you could turn it into a full-time business and become your own boss.