7 Ways an LMS Beats an E-Commerce Platform for Selling Courses Online

Selling courses online is easier than ever.  With hundreds of solutions to choose from, the hardest part is finding the best ecommerce platform for your needs.

Stand-alone ecommerce solutions often fall short when it comes to delivering and managing training.

Both a learning management system (LMS) and generic ecommerce software will provide basic functionality you need. At the very least, you should be able to sell any form of training, including physical products, online courses and live or virtual events.

However, there are many benefits an ecommerce LMS can offer that stand-alone ecommerce platforms can’t match. The following are the top seven benefits of selling training with an LMS:

1)  Training Expertise

Unlike a stand-alone ecommerce solution, an ecommerce LMS is custom-built for selling training.  Rather than having two separate systems, you can manage both ecommerce and training in one place.  With an ecommerce LMS, you have the ability to:

  • Attach entrance/exit surveys to courses you sell, set pre-requisites, and more
  • Sell admission to training events, book rooms, manage waitlists and track attendance
  •  Group courses together into kits for ease of purchase, or for promotional pricing

2)  Advanced Tracking & Reporting

When it comes to professional certification, licensing, or compliance training, it’s extremely important to maintain accurate training records.  Even when training isn’t compliance-related, both administrators and learners can benefit from reporting available in an LMS. For example:

  • All the activity that takes place in the LMS is tracked in a historical transcript both learners and administrators can access any time
  • The version of a course is tracked to determine if a learner needs to  complete an updated version
  • Detailed reports at the course level give valuable insights into the most popular and profitable courses, as well as which areas can be improved

3) Extendable Access

If you sell training to businesses (B2B), an ecommerce LMS is the best solution to extend access to your training.  With an LMS, you have the flexibility to give your B2B clients their own separate site. A
“multi-site” ecommerce LMS provides the ability to:

  • Manage multiple client sites from one administrator account
  • Grant or restrict access to any part of the system, such as specific reports, account management permissions, etc.
  • Allow your customers to control the look and feel of their own site

4) Variable Pricing

Not every typical ecommerce solution can handle the unique pricing models used to sell training online.  An ecommerce LMS, on the other hand, is custom-built to handle a variety of different pricing models, such as:

  • Ability to generate different prices based on specific criteria (Members vs. Non-Members, etc.)
  • Allow bulk purchase/voucher buying options for B2B customers
  • Support for subscription-based pricing that discontinues access to training after an expiration date

5) Certification Programs

Certification programs can range from a basic certificate of completion to certification to practice law in a specific state.  If the training you sell will be used for any certification, you will benefit immensely from using an LMS to manage the process.  LMS certification program features include:

  • Automatically generate a certificate after the training is completed or a specific score is received
  • Ability to assign different credit amounts or types for a single course (for training that is worth different credits depending on the state or jurisdiction)
  • Automated reminders sent to learners prior to a certificate expiring, prompting them to sign up again

6) Compliance Assurance

Staying in compliance with training regulations is a challenge.  Whether you sell compliance courses to an organization or to individuals, using an LMS will streamline the management process.  Some advantages of selling compliance training with an LMS are:

  • E-signatures can be used to verify training
  • Audit-ready compliance reports available within the system
  • Training can be made recurring if needed

7) Auto-Account Creation / Registration

An LMS can save you administrative time in a way that a regular ecommerce platform just can’t.  With an LMS, you have the ability to integrate with external systems, set rules to automate processes, and more.  For example:

  • Integrations with other systems such as HRIS, CRM, AMS to automatically create new user accounts
  • Set system rules to automatically register new users for a course
  • Set up rules or attributes to automatically register users for specific courses based on their profiles

The convenience and cost-effectiveness of online training has significantly increased its demand in recent years.  Smart organizations are taking advantage of this opportunity and generating revenue with their online courses.  An ecommerce LMS is the best way to sell courses online, saving both time and costs by managing training processes and selling content from one convenient location.

7 Ways an LMS Beats an E-Commerce Platform for Selling Courses Online

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