Guest post from Sarah
About one year ago, my husband and I began experimenting with ways to supplement our income. As a long-time MoneySavingMom.com follower, I felt that I had a pretty good handle on a number of legitimate money-making ideas and began trying them, with varying degrees of success.
However, since I work full-time as a middle school teacher and am a mother to three children under the age of six, time is at a premium. I really wanted a more passive stream of income that would allow me to spend my evening and weekend hours how I wanted to — with my family.
That’s when I discovered Teachers Pay Teachers (TPT), a website that allows teachers to sell lesson plans, worksheets, and more. Teachers earn 60% of the profit off each item they sell. If they choose to upgrade from a Basic Seller account (by paying $59.95 a year), they can earn greater profit. Teachers are paid each month through a PayPal account.
Aha! I already had boxes and computer files full of worksheets, quizzes, lesson plans, and novel units that I had created over my years of teaching. Why not turn them into passive income?
I did… and have learned a few things along the way:
1. Strive For Quality Not Quantity
This may seem obvious, but it is actually the most important tip. Make sure that your products are high quality, interesting, user-friendly, and kid-tested. Check for spelling and grammar errors. No one will want to buy a worksheet with typos on it!
2. Create Unique Content
Try to find a niche area. Do a quick search of the TPT site and see how many items come up that are similar to yours. If the market is already flooded with “Frozen” themed addition practice, this may not be a good money-maker.
I’ve personally had success with novel units. For example, I had previously created a novel packet for the book, “A Boy At War”. A search showed that there were only two other unit packets for the novel, so I tweaked mine and posted it. It has been one of my biggest sellers.
3. Choose The Right Price
Pricing can be tricky. You want to demonstrate confidence in the value of your product, but you don’t want to scare customers away. First, search for similar products to see how they are priced.
Next, put yourself in the buyer’s shoes. How much would you be willing to spend on your product?
Finally, adjust. If something isn’t selling, have a sale to see if customers will buy it at a reduced price.
4. Utilize Pinterest
Whenever you post a new product, there is a sidebar that asks if you would like to Pin it. Always say yes! This allows your product to enter a new market and attract more customers.
There are also Collaborative Pinterest Threads on TPT. You pin another seller’s items to your board, and they will do the same for you.
I have found that, with a little up-front work, Teachers Pay Teachers is a great way to utilize my talents and gain a passive source of income.
Sarah Wright teaches middle school on purpose and loves it! She is wife to Dan and mom to three children under the age of six. In her spare time she loves to read — setting a reading goal of 100 books this year. She encourages her students to set their own “ridiculously big” goals and chase after them.
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