The online education market is growing rapidly, and training providers should be integrating Learning Management System, LMS with eCommerce to tap into the huge market of remote learners.
eCommerce integration allows training providers to sell their content directly to consumers online. It provides a digital storefront for users to browse and purchase courseware over the internet using secure payment gateways for a completely self-directed shopping experience.
Benefits of LMS with eCommerce Integration
- Improves the user experience with seamless course selection and checkout. Once payment is accepted, automatic fulfillment of the customer order and student registration completes the purchase process. Learners start the course right away – no waiting.
- Offers 24×7 shopping. Your online store never closes, allowing customers to shop whenever it’s convenient for them – make money while you sleep.
- Automated administration. Streamline back–office tasks and minimize human error.
- Secure payments sent directly to your bank account. Most eCommerce solutions support multiple payment gateways and can process foreign currency transactions in your preferred currency to enable global sales.
- Offers versatile pricing models and discounting strategies. Create time-sensitive offers that align with your go–to–market strategies.
- Provides advanced analytics and sales reporting. Understand trends, look at abandoned carts, track sales by course or geography, and to analyze the of effect of price on sales volume to maximize revenue.
- Captures customer data and activity for historical and future marketing purposes.
Maximizing Revenue with an eCommerce LMS
So, how do you turn these benefits into increased profits? Here are a few ideas:
1- Start with a professional, scalable storefront
- Make the shopping experience intuitive and painless for customers with a well-designed digital storefront. Arrange courses by category and make it easy for learners to browse, purchase, and enroll.
- Alternatively, embed directly on your website or blog to seamlessly turn a website visitor into a paying customer.
- Be wary of LMS providers that only provide a built-in storefront solution, as that will limit you to their particular approach for store layout, look, and feel. They may also restrict available store functionality and limit you to the payment gateways they support. More powerful eCommerce solutions like Shopify provide a feature rich environment with more store options, in depth reporting on purchasing behavior, plus an ecosystem of apps to optimize the customer’s shopping experience with your store and enhance revenue.
2- Bundle and split courses
- Offer groups of courses on the same topic at a reduced price for the set versus individual course pricing. Or bundle other eLearning assets such as eBooks, worksheet templates, or measuring tools with courseware.
- Sell multiple seats to the same course in a single transaction. Allow businesses to purchase and assign classes in volume on behalf of groups of employees.
- Allow customers to purchase individual modules or a subset of lessons from a larger course at a reduced price for each.
3- Target different levels of learners, and learners in different geographies
- Divide courseware into beginner, intermediate, and expert classes to attract learners with different skill sets and encourage repeat business by moving students through a curriculum.
- Enable multi-language support to sell courses globally. Course content remains in its native language, but the integration can present learner access and administration in various languages.
- Use dynamic pricing to reflect the conditions in each market individually.
4- Cater to larger customers
- The ability for customers to purchase multiple seats to a course(s) on behalf of multiple employees in a single transaction is efficient for the purchaser and boosts revenues. Consider volume–based pricing to encourage multiple seat purchases.
- The purchaser has administrative oversight over their group of employees, including the ability to run reports to track learner progress.
- As employees need to be re-certified or new employees require training, administrators can seamlessly purchase and assign additional seats using their existing LMS account.
- In addition to eCommerce integration, choose a LMS that will allow you to meet larger customer needs with functionality such as Client Sites, support for standards based single sign-on (SSO), and external LMS integration. Your store should prominently promote larger volume purchasers to reach out to receive preferred pricing, perhaps with a Request Quote form that collects relevant details.
5- Offer multiple payment options and incentives
- Enable one time, pay-as-you-go, or sell groups of seats to a course valid for a limited time (i.e., 30, days, 90 days, or one year from date of purchase).
- Take advantage of your eCommerce provider’s multiple payment methods such as credit cards, PayPal, Apple or Google Pay, wire transfers, and other means to make purchasing as convenient as possible. Reduce purchasing barriers for the customer by letting them choose the payment method that suits them best.
- Offer customized discounts, promotional codes, and coupons with limited time offers on rotating titles, buy-nine-get-the-tenth-free deals, and acknowledge returning customers with a repeat purchase loyalty discount.
6- Benchmark the competition
- Ensuring your courseware is competitively priced is important, but price may not always be the deciding factor. Research and understand the market for your course(s). How many competitors are there for your course(s)? What is their go-to-market strategy, and can you differentiate your offering(s) from the competition on factors other than just price? For example, can you demonstrate greater value to your customers because students are able to complete your courses in less time, earn a third-party certification, or be more thoroughly trained on the topic(s) than the competition’s courses?
7- Always be promoting
- Create exciting, compelling course descriptions on your website or online store that emphasize benefits and results of the course to entice customers to make a purchase. Save the course details for the individual course product pages.
- Use eCommerce tools built into the integration such as abandoned cart reminders, promotion of related products and add-ons, and auto reminder emails when incomplete courses and subscriptions are nearing expiration to improve conversion rates.
- Customize your LMS Course Completion emails to include promo offers or discount codes to customers who have completed a course.
- Reward learners with points, credits, or badges toward the next level of achievement to encourage repeat business.
Firmwater knows flexible eCommerce is critical to success
Training providers should focus on developing and selling quality training, without having to worry about the inner workings of an LMS or the mechanisms to enable eCommerce. That’s the Firmwater philosophy.
We offer an LMS optimized for B2B and B2C training providers with support for all the critical elements of building, hosting, and delivering eLearning content online.
Firmwater integrates with external LMSs and supports SSO. It works with all SCORM compliant authoring tools, supports an unlimited number of brandable client sites, and keeps you into total control of your intellectual property.
To enable flexible and powerful eCommerce capabilities, Firmwater partners with Shopify, the world’s largest and most flexible eCommerce platform, to bring your courses to audiences the world over.
The Firmwater Shopify App provides tight integration with native Shopify features and offers access to a library of apps to enhance your store’s capabilities. The functionality baked into Shopify allows you to optimize the customer shopping experience without restrictions to increase sales and maximize revenue in ways that align with your business.