Marketing 11 MIN READ

The 11 Best Online Learning Platforms (for 2020)

The elearning industry is growing rapidly. An unbreakable piece of evidence of this is the increasing number of online learning platforms that offer the opportunity to create online courses.

For online instructors, trainers and aspiring edupreneurs this is awesome news. But the struggle of choosing the best LMS software out of the many options that are out there is real. This requires in-depth research into what each one offers in terms of features and capabilities, ease-of-use, pricing, and of course customer support.

To help make this process easier, we have come up with a list of the top 11 online learning platforms that provide high-quality learning experiences and are perfect for course creation.

Here it goes…

Platform #1: LearnWorlds

Type: Standalone Learning Platform

LearnWorlds Screenshot

LearnWorlds is an all-in-one online course platform that offers the ability to build your online academy while creating unique, interactive and social learning experiences.

It brings everything you need in one place, making the process of creating online courses easy and affordable at the same time. On top of that, it’s designed to give you the right marketing tools to help you promote and sell online courses.

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It’s ideal for entrepreneurs, individual instructors, educators, small/medium businesses, professional trainers and internal training for companies that want to train their employees.

Pricing: It offers a 30-day free trial and then subscription pricing plans at:

Pricing Information retrieved from LearnWorlds on February 18th 2020.

For a more detailed analysis of the LearnWorlds plans, you can check our pricing plan comparison chart.

Create a beautiful online school without any technical skills.

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Platform #2: Udemy

Type: Online Course Marketplace

Udemy Screenshot

First on the list is Udemy. Udemy is one of the most popular online course marketplaces on the web. This educational platform has more than 40 million students and 50 thousand instructors and subject matter experts creating online courses.

Udemy makes course creation possible for everyone with the possibility of acquiring new skills. In doing so, it offers a range of online learning materials including PDF documents, PowerPoint, text, and video content amongst many others.

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It’s great for teachers, instructors, educators, and freelancers who are just starting out.

Pricing: No starting fee but very high commissions on sales of up to 75%.

*Pricing information retrieved from Udemy Support on February 18th 2020.

Platform #3: Skillshare

Type: Online Course Marketplace

Skillshare Screenshot

Skillshare is another popular course marketplace that has more than 4 million students and up to 24,000 lessons in various disciplines. Course lessons last from 20 to 60 minutes and are made out of a series of small videos, class projects, and a student community that encourages interaction through discussion forums.

Classes are divided into 4 categories:

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It’s great for instructors who are in the creative field and want to make a side income. Instructors can make money through Skillshare’s royalty system and their referral program.

Pricing: Free to join, but it comes with specific class guidelines you need to follow.

Platform #4: Coursera

Type: Online Course Marketplace

Coursera Screenshot

Coursera is an online education platform with 23 million users, that is dedicated to offering high-quality online training courses worldwide. While partnering with world-class universities and businesses, it provides students the opportunity to receive certifications from renowned institutions upon joining their paid courses.

Coursera offers individual courses, specialized courses and degree programs that support on-demand video lectures, homework exercises, peer-reviewed assignments, and community discussion forums.

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It is aimed for instructors and professors who are based at a HE partner institution or business.

Pricing: Coursera deals directly with top tier universities, not individuals.

Platform #5: Thinkific

Type: Standalone Learning Platform

Thinkific Screenshot

Thinkific is a standalone course platform that helps you sell online courses. Thinkific provides everything you need to create your online education business including an easy-to-use interface to build courses and rich multimedia to add right into your course content.

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It’s ideal for solopreneurs, small/medium businesses – SMEs, and online trainers.

Pricing: Free to join with limited functionality. It offers a 30-day free trial on the Pro plan. Subscription plans include:

*Pricing information retrieved from Thinkific on February 18th 2020.

Platform #6: Open-edX

Type: Hybrid / Open-source

Open-edX Screenshot

Open-edX is an open-source content management system behind the massive online course provider (MOOC) – edX, that was created by a team of scientists from Harvard University and MIT with the goal to provide online university-level education across the globe.

Open-edX has powered more than 8,000 online courses from 100 prestigious universities and businesses that are currently offering higher education in many disciplines. They mainly specialize in the sciences – engineering, computer science, data science, math, humanities, business, and management.

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It’s great for businesses who can afford a team or outsource the development and maintenance of the platform in their own servers.

Pricing: Free to join, but there may be additional costs on procuring a server and system support and in getting expert help from Open-edX’s service providers or freelancers whose pricing varies according to your project’s requirements and budget.

For more information on Open-edX course creation expenses check out this guide.

Platform #7: WizIQ

Type: Standalone Learning Platform

WizIQ Screenshot

WizIQ is a cloud-based education platform for real-time or self-paced training using your own custom-branded domain. It delivers live and on-demand webinars and it’s a very popular tool amongst online course creators who prefer live training, coaching or a classroom-like feeling.

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It’s ideal for enterprise employees, individual teachers, trainers, colleges, universities, tutoring, and Test-Prep companies.

Pricing: It offers a free 14-day trial. Then pricing varies depending on rooms and attendees, and the number of registered users for their:

*Pricing information retrieved from WizIQ on February 18th 2020.

Platform #8: Teachable

Type: Standalone Learning Platform

Teachable Screenshot

Teachable is an online teaching platform that serves the everyday instructor. Teachable provides an easy and simple solution for uploading your learning content, customizing your online school and communicating effectively with your students.

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It’s a great option for new course creators, solopreneurs, coaches and creative professionals.

Pricing: It has a very limited free plan and then goes to:

*Pricing information retrieved from Teachable on May 14th 2020.

Platform #9: Kajabi

Type: Standalone Learning Platform

Kajabi Screenshot

Kajabi is an all-in-one online platform that offers the tools to sell digital products, including online courses. Kajabi specializes in building high-converting sales pages, landing pages, webinar pages for your online business and launching your advertising campaigns.

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It is for non-techy online course creators, digital entrepreneurs, small businesses, freelancers, creators, and individual instructors selling simple format courses and downloadables.

Pricing: Offers a 14-day trial with a credit card. Then it goes to a monthly payment of the subscription which includes:

*Pricing Information retrieved from Kajabi on February 18th 2020.

Platform #10: LearnDash

Type: WordPress Plugin

LearnDash Screenshot

LearnDash is a WordPress Plugin that helps to transform a website into an online course platform by adding e-learning features to a WordPress based website. For its setup, it might require a bit more technical and web-development knowledge compared to the rest of the options here.

LearnDash’s best features are the Gradebook which offers the overall average grade of students based on their quizzes and homework scores. Another noteworthy tool is the course points that are awarded to students for carrying out specific actions and course activities.

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It can be used by freelancers, universities, educational institutions, non-profit and training organizations, WordPress developers, or anyone using a WordPress site and wants to turn it into a WordPress LMS to create and sell online courses.

Pricing: LearnDash comes with three basic subscription plans. The only difference between them is the number of site licenses that come with each:

*Pricing information retrieved from LearnDash on February 18th 2020.

Platform #11: Podia

Type: Standalone Learning Platform

Podia Screenshot

Podia is an online learning platform that makes creating and selling online courses, memberships, and other digital products an easy task. Podia offers a rich resources library and free tools for entrepreneurs who want to build their online store, school or website.

Pros:

Cons:

Who is it for? It’s great for content creators and artists who want to monetize their content and knowledge with simple learning activities and gated video.

Pricing: It offers a 14-day free trial. Subscription pricing plans include:

Pricing information retrieved from Podia on February 18th 2020.

Looking for an Online Learning Platform?

The best option for an online learning platform is the one that fits your needs and budget. There are many options to choose from and every option offers something different depending on the level of expertise, technical skills or quality of service you wish to offer to your students.

Most LMS platforms come with a trial or freemium version you can test for a couple of days before deciding which one works for you.

Why don’t you start with a free trial with LearnWorlds today and decide if it meets your learning needs and preferences?

Create a beautiful online school without any technical skills.

Start free trial

Further reading you might find interesting:

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Content Creator at

Kyriaki is a Content Creator for the LearnWorlds team with more than three years of experience in digital marketing. Graduated from the University of Huddersfield with a Guidance degree, she has equipped herself with hands-on experience in education management and career guidance.