How Teaching Kids What They Want to Learn Took This Site to 1 Million Visitors Per Year

In this Growth Through Content study, you'll learn:

  • How Outschool found a gap in the online education market during the pandemic
  • Why they could be missing out on potential income 
  • And how providing your audience with what they want to learn is SEO gold. 

Let's dive in.


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What is Outschool?

Outschool is an innovative online educational company that was founded in 2015. 

Rather than focusing on the traditional education subjects, they actually started teaching online live classes in a range of subjects that kids enjoy, such as drawing, singing, dance, anime and even escape rooms.

The core difference between this platform and others is that the lessons are live and the teachers don't have to hold any teaching credentials.  

The current funding levels place the company valuation at $1.3 billion.

What are their SEO metrics like?

According to Ahrefs, Outschool has a UR of 82 and a DR of 78.

With over 328,000 backlinks from 7600 referring domains, they rank for around 308,000 keywords that drive 137k visitors to the site each month. 

This organic traffic is worth $216,000 and around $369,000 in equivalent PPC spend.

How do they generate their traffic?

While Outschool was founded in 2015, there is no doubt that the pandemic has fuelled the growth of the platform and for good reason; we were all locked up.

That being said, it's clear that a combination of good PR and SEO has helped them to grow quickly.

Their brand name generates over 92,000 visitors alone.

But that's not the only thing going on.

Their classes seem to naturally answer search queries. 

Take this example for their Kawai drawings:

They rank for 325 keywords and that page generates 490 visitors per month.

And yes, there are lots of examples like that on their site.

But what is likely to be a money keyword for them is being on page one for the $6.59 keyword 'online classes for kids'. 

How do they generate their backlinks?

It's not surprising that the platform has obtained a lot of links since the pandemic.

Their backlink profile exploded with media mentions since 2020, but there is also another element.

Because you don't need teaching credentials to earn money from this site, they are picking up links related to how to make extra income.

This is an important learning point because often you can generate backlinks when you target indirect aspects of your buisness.

Outschool doesn't push itself as a platform to generate money from, but that fact that you can opens up new link opportunities. 

Teaching Kids What They Want to Learn... in a New Way

As with most of the truly great ideas, SEO probably wasn't on their mind before they created it.

But the idea is quite interesting, an online school for subjects that kids love to learn.

The potential for this is huge. 

Many of the subjects taught on the platform are subjects you can learn by watching YouTube videos, or even reading a book. 

But that's not really the point, it's live, interactive education that is delivered online and this could actually be a gap in the current online education market.

Sure, we all like to learn online, and live webinars plus recording aren't anything new, but you could potentially see a combination of live webinars and recordings thrive.

What about a dog training class where you stay at home, watch and do the training and have access to the video.

Or even DIY classes that run alongside you actually doing the project.

Small groups of 6 to 10 people in live classrooms could be very interesting.

And as we leave the Covid lockdown world, this type of training could open up opportunites of scale for coaches and business owners.

It's easy to see how live training which you can then sell as a recording could be profitable. 

Teach once...sell twice.

They Could Be Missing Out on Income

From an SEO perspective, there are some downsides with the Outschool approach, such as this class on drawing a great white shark.

According to Ahrefs it generates over 195 visitors a month, and yet the class was a one-off and you can't buy the class or sign up again, so it’s really a bit disappointing.

Surely an option to buy the recording of the class would be financially better for all involved?

But that's a business model issue.

Micro Education...Could it Be the Future?

Micro education has the power to be huge.

From 1-2-1 cooking lessons delivered online to art, pottery and even acting.

You can see that people would love to take small, live classes.

However, I can't help but wonder if this business only thrived because of the pandemic?

And whether they might struggle moving forward?


But it's their popular classes that might actually make this platform become huge. 

Take this page on coding in Roblox:

That teacher has 33,610 reviews for their classes.

And while they seem to be a not-for-profit operating on the platform, it's clear that you could soon see parents being able to direct their children towards subjects they love, and the child will equally be happy. 

When looking at this website, it was easy to see the potential for SEO for the site with a wide range of keywords, such as online Spanish classes for kids.  

The key thing to look at here from an SEO perspective is that often circumstances beyond your control can fuel growth, but equally, by providing things people want and need, you'll see potential opportunities. 

Outschool came along before the pandemic, but there is some SEO gold in finding out what your target audience wants to learn and providing this for them, either as content or educational training.

Key Takeaways

When I was writing this study, I wondered what people would learn or takeaway from it.

And to be honest, there isn't a great deal, because I truly think their growth was fuelled by the pandemic.

But that doesn't mean they wouldn't have grown their traffic eventually, because the idea itself is sound.

From an SEO perspective the basics of good PR and basic link building are on display.

However it also shows the importance of just going into areas where there is little competition but the idea makes sense.

Online teaching for kids makes sense. Online teaching of lessons that kids wish they had at school makes amazing sense.

And I think this is where the gold is.

Make up for men makes no sense...until someone created some and it's becoming huge.

What could be next?

Ice cream that tastes great but is made from veggies?

Here's a tip that might help you to find that untapped market.

Head over to a keyword tool and write in what you do and add the words for.

"Art for".

"Bathroom fitting for".

"SEO for"

You'll be suprised at what might show up.

Thanks for reading.


Click the button below and sign up to the Growth Through Content Newsletter.

Each Thursday I'll send you a new content marketing or SEO case study directly to your inbox.

posted February 25, 2022

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