October 25th, 2013 E-Learning

sell-elearningMany instructional design professionals today have a desire to not only create elearning courses, but to sell them as well. Truth be told, now is the best time to get into the direct sales of elearning programs. Sleeker technology and the growing use of mobile devices has given second life to elearning.

Today it isn’t uncommon for most students to take a portion of their coursework online – the new generation is used to elearning and expects it. As such, they will be most likely to seek it out (free or for purchase).

But, how do you sell elearning?

There are plenty of avenues to selling your courses online. Below are three possibilities you can use for creating and selling your courses.

1. Udemy.com – Udemy is a hub for people to create and market courses on anything they wish. The upside here is that it is pretty quick to get started. Naturally the downside is that if you are fortunate to sell your courses, then Udemy takes a share of the revenue (50%) if the students who take your courses weren’t brought there by you. Also, you don’t have control over the “look and feel” of the site.

2. Skillshare.com – Similar to Udemy, you can create an account with Skillshare and sell courses. What’s unique about Skillshare is the ability for students to upload projects based on the course content. With Skillshare you keep 70% of the course price (or 85% if you get someone to sign-up through a unique link).

3. WordPress – Once used primarily as a blogging platform, WordPress has evolved to a point where it can function as a content management system. Setting up a course to sell takes a bit more time than the first two options, but the added benefit is that you get to keep 100% of the revenue. Membership plugins, or a WordPress LMS plugin like LearnDash make it painless to set a price and instantly begin selling.

There are other platforms out there that will allow you to set-up courses and to sell them. No matter what option you choose, there are always trade-offs. In some cases you can get started rather quickly, but you don’t get to keep all the revenue from your sales.

You should also consider your long-term goals when it comes to selling courses. For example, if you built-up a substantial customer base but are selling on a third party platform, your customers aren’t really your customers, but rather the parent company’s customers (i.e. Udemy).  Also, you won’t be able to sell your business one day – assuming that is something you want to do.

All that said, today is a great day to start selling your online courses, and it has never been easier!

Justin Ferriman photo

About Justin Ferriman

Justin Ferriman started LearnDash, the WordPress LMS trusted by Fortune 500 companies, major universities, training organizations, and entrepreneurs worldwide for creating (and selling) their online courses. Justin's Homepage | Twitter

Posted in


8 responses

Leave a Comment

Hey Justin! Thanks for this great info. I’m taking the main course at udemy.com for new instructors and there are cool features that would be great to have in LearnDash. Here is the link udemy.com/official-udemy-instructor-course/ in case you would like to enroll and maybe take note on some ideas.

I have a course on Udemy.com. I think it’s one of the most intuitive and slick-running course platforms out there. It does, however, lend itself mostly towards video training. I also teach music students on wiziq.com, which has excellent features for synchronous learning.

As you mentioned at the end of your article, when you sell your course through a third party your customers are not really your customers, is a there a any way available out there to sell to directly and have your own professional platform?! is so, how usually does it cost?

Avatar Aria

Hi Aria-
Thanks for the note. Well if you don’t mind me saying, LearnDash allows you to create and then sell training. The customers are yours and you can brand your site in any way you wish. Here is an example of a company using LearnDash to create their own brand and sell training.

Hello Justin, okay?

I live in Brazil and would like to know if LearnDash is in Portuguese? If you have interest in buying. Thank you and is with God.

Avatar wanderlei

Hi wanderlei-

Yes, there is a Brazilian Portuguese translation available. Translating further is not difficult either.

Hi Justin,

I chose the third platform with wishlist plugin, but I wonder what are the marketing platforms for my beautiful program.


Neri Life-Choma

Comments are closed.

Your course could already be online!

We offer a 15 day money-back guarantee and have a world class community to help you get your course online today!

See LearnDash in action. Online Demo


👋 Meet LearnDash Webinar

Are you trying to decide if LearnDash is the right learning management system to build your online courses? Join us for our next live walkthrough.

Join Our Next Webinar!

LearnDash webinars are designed to teach you how to build, grow, and scale your course-building business. Join our team in one of our next live webinars.