15 Platforms to Publish and Sell Online Courses (and Counting)

Looking to sell online courses, but confused by all of the platform choices? This post highlights some of the top online course platforms and helps you narrow your list. While you are here, be sure to grab the free platform selection guide to help you make the right choice faster and smarter. And, if you are ready to create online courses and other online education content, be sure to check out the free Learning Revolutionary's Toolbox!

Image of e-commerce related to sell online courses and online course platforms

To sell online courses, it used to be that you had to master an authoring tool, license a learning management system (LMS) – or come up with a workaround – figure out hosting and e-commerce, and then somehow deal with end user support. These days, you can get across the finish line with little more than the digital video camera in your phone, an Internet connection, and one of the platforms listed here.

In this post, I draw on two decades of experience working with online course platforms to narrow down the options and take a quick look at some of the best of what’s out there for helping you create, market, and sell online courses on the Web. [Read more…]

Will your online course be held prisoner?

Photo of locked prison doorThere’s a critical question that should (but often doesn’t) get answered when selecting a platform. Namely, “How easy will it be to move my online course to another platform?

You see, most course platforms provide you with a variety of tools for creating online courses, and that can be great for getting you started quickly. The problem comes down the line when you decide that you either (a) want to be able to distribute your course through additional platforms (e.g., maybe one of your customers already has a platform of their own), or (b) you want to change to a new platform.

Platforms are all a little different in how they approach course authoring and there simply is no “easy button” for exporting your course from one platform and importing into another. In most cases, you are going to run into a lot of headaches trying to do that and you will usually just have to start from scratch when assembling all of your course components in a different platform.

Now, that may not matter much if [Read more…]

The Key to Avoiding Online Course Failure

Image of frustrated man at laptop - online course failure

Online course failure. I was prompted to write about this topic because of a conversation I had recently with the financial director at an organization that is not getting good sales results for its online courses. The critical part of the conversation went something like this: [Read more…]

Will your online course platform still be here tomorrow?

dropped ice cream cone at child's feet

In your search for an online course platform, you may have noticed that the market has gotten quite crowded – which means it’s time to be cautious.

I’ve seen this before – circa 1997 (dotcom days) – when tons of e-learning companies were rushing into the market and investors were throwing money at those companies. I think the frenzy is more legitimate now (and investors aren’t acting as crazy), but still, you can bet that a lot of the platform companies don’t have what it takes to survive.

If you are just dabbling, this isn’t a big deal. But if you currently sell or plan to sell online courses as a significant part of your business, you definitely don’t want to wake up one morning to find the company you depend on has shut it doors.

Now, given that a significant percentage platform companies out there right now are privately held, it’s next to impossible to tell how viable each one is financially, but here are some checks you can perform to help give you confidence your provider, or any provider you are considering, will be around for a while: [Read more…]

Are you capitalizing on this powerful channel?

40 percent of Americans over the age of 12 have done it.

67 million – just under a quarter of the U.S. 12+ population – did it last month.

Another 42 million did it last week – roughly five times the number who went movies.

“It” is listened to a podcast.

Benefits of podcasting - man listening to podcast on mobile phone

The numbers are huge, and they continue to grow at a very healthy clip according to the latest Infinite Dial report from Edison Research (free download).

Why should online course producers care? [Read more…]