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How to structure your online programme

Jan 5, 2015 | tips, Vee's blog | 2 comments

Developing Online Programmes

Structuring online programmes imageWhat online programmes have you got planned for 2015? Maybe you are thinking of launching some online products or programmes and have an idea of what could work as an online programme, but not sure how best to deliver it or what format the programme should take? Should it be free or should there be a fee and if so, how much? Do you upsell and what do you upsell and how do you upsell without being obnoxiously salesy?

Here are some ideas.

Offer three price points

  1. The first is low cost or free. For that they get to download a PDF of your information. Free? Yes, because it’s just that – information. It’s totally up to them to action the information to benefit from it. This works well for programmes that invoke a change, like weight loss, fitness training, business planning or anything that you could do yourself. They don’t get ‘you’. But remember that you should set this up so they only get the information after signing up so you have their email address to follow up with your newsletter, offers and/or upsells to your other price points. Which brings me nicely to the next price point.
  2. The second price point is a small investment but small enough that the purchaser thinks it’s a no-brainer. To truly benefit and see results and not drop off the wagon on the way, you offer the next price point where they get a ‘piece’ of you as well as the download from the first price point. You give them something extra that will help them. This could be a series of daily (or weekly depending on your programme) emails reminding them what they should be doing that day/week. If your programme is a series of daily tasks, then the content of the emails contain the task for that day – simple! The emails are programmed automatically to deliver so it doesn’t matter when the person signed up. It could also include a live group webinar with you that you run regularly (say weekly or monthly) which you can run as a Q&A session where people get to pick your brains. And of course, if you do include some ‘live’ element to the programme you won’t get into trouble with the complicated EU VAT regulations.
  3. The third price point is your premium offering – a VIP package where in addition to getting the above, they get to work with you 121. That could be face to face sessions or virtual sessions over Skype for example. They get a bigger piece of you – your personalised advice for their particular situation and/or you holding them accountable. It could be 121 access to you at particular times. It could even be you actually doing something for them that your free information advocates.

Upselling without being salesy

Did you notice any abnoxious selling in the above? That’s because it’s all there, three different price points and what you get at each level. No haggling, no nasty surprises, just straight forward upfront this is how you can buy from me.

Need help pulling together all the tech tools to get this to work? Why not have a free 30 minute consultation with me to find out how I can help you get your programme launched.





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  1. Maria Baeck

    Hi Vee, Thanks for a great post! I have a question, if you don’t mind. In the ‘Offer three price points’ section you mention EU VAT regulations (prince point 2), and you mention how having live/online/virtual elements help with complicated EU VAT. Would you mind sharing more about that? Does it affect UK VAT as well? Thanks!

  2. Vee Smith

    Great question Maria. Whilst I’m no tax expert, this is my understanding.

    The EU VAT regulation applies if you have people based in the EU buying your course – you need to charge VAT at their local rate and pay this to the VAT authority for that EU country. Even if you operate below the UK VAT threshold/aren’t registered for the UK, this still applies.

    VAT becomes chargeable if your course is totally automated. The requirement is to then register for VAT (even if the UK doesn’t require you to be registered). There is a scheme called VAT MOSS and is supposed to make it simpler.

    The uproar is that it’s a lot of admin/redtape that the small business hasn’t got the capacity/resources to handle, in particular if the price point is low.

    If you restrict the sales to the UK then you’re good. However, it’s likely that you will get clients from abroad (the whole benefit of offering online courses is to reach more people!).

    A work around is to make sure your course has some live element. Some examples might include support via a FB group, live webinar, 121 Skype call/screenshare.

    Another work around is to use a third party to ‘host’ your online programme where the third party take care of the VAT Moss for you. I believe Simplero are one such platform that do this. There may be others now.

    I wrote an article about the VAT Moss here:

    and here’s a link to HMRC for the latest on VAT MOSS (supplying digital services to the EU)

    Hope that helps.

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