Vendors have a direct effect on your business as a training provider. A great business vendor can become a partner that provides your business with value and growth. In this post, we discuss how vendors can affect your pricing model and why your pricing model must be compatible with that of your vendor.

Be sure to consider whether your pricing strategy is compatible with how much your vendors charge you.

What makes a great pricing model?

An excellent pricing model/strategy is one where you base your prices on the value that your training brings to clients. Trying to compete by always under-bidding isn’t ideal because your prices inform your clients what you think about your own content. Be sure to use learning personas to understand your clients.

Likewise, you can create a buyer persona to ensure that you are always aware of what your clients are willing to pay for content.

Common vendor costs to be aware of

As a training provider, you might encounter vendor costs like:

  • Authoring tools
  • LMS
  • Sales/marketing
  • HR/employee costs

Pricing models shouldn’t be based solely on trying to recoup these costs, but rather on the value that they bring to your training content.

Let’s review the value of what these things can bring to your business and why your pricing model needs to ensure that that value is communicated.

Authoring tools

Authoring tools can be used to create online training. Whether you are using Adobe Captivate or Articulate Rise, these software can bring value to the learner, which should be shown in the pricing.

You can also create videos and exams. What do you use to record those videos, what software is used to edit those videos, and where are they hosted? These things provide a quality learning experience that your clients expect and will be willing to pay for.


Your LMS expense is another example of how you are providing quality to your clients. When dealing with LMS vendors, you should understand their pricing model ahead of time. This way, you won’t be caught off guard by the expense later. Common pricing models include license, subscription, pay-per-user and pay-per-course-start.

While it’s important to pay for an LMS with a pricing model that is compatible with your own business model, ensure that you’re choosing an LMS with pricing that is scalable, with no surprise fees. For example, with an LMS course-start pricing model, the more course volume you sell, the lower the cost per course-start. Additionally, you should also check if your LMS vendor charges extra for support.


All businesses require sales and marketing activities. These things bring value to your business because they draw clients to you. Just be sure they are high-value clients. For example, if you are paying for Facebook ads or Google Ads, use your analytics to confirm that you are getting the kind of clients that you want. If you’ve never checked your analytics, take the time today to do so.

If you are seeing a true return on investment, make sure your prices enable you to keep up the good work.


A great business, even a sole proprietor, is not really a team of one. There are people helping to either get the content made or the contract signed. They bring value to your training content and need to be compensated a living wage.

Everyone must be compensated, whether they’re the person who manages your social media or the accountant who handles payroll. Your pricing model/strategy should ensure that this happens on either a monthly or biweekly schedule. Don’t leave people out in the cold when developing your pricing models.

Also, consider the cost of your instructional design expertise and the amount of time devoted to course building. Whether you’re designing and producing the courses yourself or hiring an instructional designer, ensure that that value is reflected in your pricing.

Bring it all together

Vendors can have a big impact on your pricing strategy. What you select for your business also needs to be compatible with how much your vendors charge you. Ultimately, the best pricing strategy is one that provides value and growth to your business, and the best vendors will provide the same things.

For more information on this topic, check out the following to keep learning:

Here at Firmwater, we don’t just sell an LMS for training providers. We partner with our clients, giving them the tools and insights they need to implement the best practices in e-learning course development, growth, and delivery. We care too much about our customers’ businesses to have them wade through forums and chatbots for help.

Ready to use an LMS that’s designed for the way YOU work, with a team dedicated to YOUR needs? Book a no-obligation consultation directly with our team today!