In the past couple of years, e-learning has revolutionized education.
Thanks to technology, the learning experience is no longer confined to the classroom.
The rise of e-learning has made learning more accessible than ever before, with hundreds of thousands of people now being able to learn new skills and acquire specialized knowledge from the comfort of their own home and at their own pace using a desktop or mobile device.
The e-learning industry is booming, and it’s here to stay. According to Forbes, the worldwide e-learning market is projected to be worth $325 Billion in 2025.
Establishing your company as a knowledgeable expert in your industry and diving into the industry of online education for your customers can have a significant positive impact on your business. In fact, nearly half of US organizations have managed to increase their income by reaping the benefits of e-learning since 2019.
Right now, there is a strong opportunity for your business to increase its revenue and reach new levels of success with online learning. Let’s explore how you can make it happen.
How Online Courses Can Help You Grow Your Business
With online courses in your toolbox, your business will be able to attract new audiences, reach new markets and retain customers. Let’s dive deeper into the many ways that creating online courses can help your business grow and significantly scale its revenue.
1. Create an entirely new revenue stream for your business by offering your expertise to your audience
You are already doing a great job running your business providing your services and products to your customers. However, if you are looking to grow and expand your revenue streams, you might be unsure of what to do beyond what you’re already doing. Providing your knowledge and expertise through an online course is a great way to attract new leads to your business, establish brand authority in your industry, and create loyal customers.
Take CFI for example, a leading Financial Analyst training company that drives revenue through online courses. The company offers financial analyst training programs and classes for individuals looking to improve their financial analysis skills, and their programs and certifications have been delivered to over 1 million students from over 170 countries, helping them become world-class financial analysts.
How Your Knowledge Expertise Can Generate Additional Revenue For Your Business
Building your first online courses with your business and customers’ needs in mind will allow you to accelerate your business growth through customer attraction and retention.
Additionally, by offering your expertise through online courses to your customers, you will be able to create an entirely new revenue stream for your business that is able to scale with you as you grow. From your first to your thousandth student, with online courses as your method of delivery you will not need to worry about the logistical elements that come with organizing in-person training events, as well as the increasing costs that are associated as you gain more customers and expand your audience.
How To Create An “Additional” Offer For Your Business
If you are looking to create an entirely new revenue stream for your business through an online learning product, a good place to start is by asking yourself how you can support what you already “have” in your business with online learning courses as an additional offer.
For instance, is there a question that your customers keep coming back to ask you? Is there a new product or service that you offer that you would like to provide training on proper use of? Is there a way that you could encourage your customers to use your product or service more through teaching them your best practices and strategies for success? Is there knowledge and expertise that you could provide your customers through courses that will help them achieve their goals?
Give these questions some thought, take a moment to think about your current biggest priority for your business, and start there.
2. Attract new audiences and “educate” prospective customers on the efficient use of your products and services
Through the use of accreditations, certifications, and partner programs, you will be able to expand your reach beyond the current products and services that you provide for your customers, and ‘tap’ into different audiences.
What are accreditation, certification, and partner programs?
- Accreditation: Many organizations give individuals their seal of “approval” or official recognition upon completion of a number of learning activities and requirements outlined by the organization. Accreditation allows those that complete the requirements outlined by the organization to provide services on their behalf, gain credit for the knowledge and experience they have gained, and more.
- Certification: Organizations also opt for providing individuals with “certificates” that attest and confirm that they have completed something such as a learning or training program. When it comes to online learning, organizations can provide individuals that complete their courses with certificates of completion, they can become “certified” practitioners of a certain service after completing an online course, and more.
- Partner Programs: By partnering with other organizations that share similar customer bases, organizations are able to amplify their sales and marketing efforts. Through online education, your business will be able to educate your partners on best practices, and certify them as partners so that they are able to provide services and perform tasks on your behalf. Meanwhile, you can rest assured knowing that your business partners have completed comprehensive training in order to provide services on your behalf, and expand the number of customers you serve every day.
How Accreditation, Certification and Partner Programs Can Increase Your Business Revenue
By creating online courses, you will be able to rest assured knowing that your customers and partners have gained their knowledge from a credible source that they can gain credit and acknowledgment for.
You will also be able to reduce the amount of time you spend training your partners, and be able to provide them with product and service education faster. By giving your “seal of approval” and providing a tangible way for your customers and partners to prove that they received education and training from your organization through certification and accreditation, you will also be able to allow them to carry on business on your behalf and rest assured that they have learned your best practices, while drawing in new audiences of people who are looking to gain the experience and knowledge that you provide through your courses.
How To Create Your Organization’s Accreditation, Certification, and Partner Programs
So you’ve decided that your business could benefit from implementing accreditation, certification, and partner programs. That’s great! Now, it’s time to decide where to start. You will have to think about your businesses’ current priorities and needs, and ask yourself the following questions:
- Could my business benefit from helping others implement my platform or products, or onboard onto my services on my behalf?
- Am I looking to add a new revenue stream to my business by providing accreditations and certifications to individuals for completing learning requirements outlined by my organization?
Once you have given these questions some thought, you should know if you want to start by providing certifications and accreditations, or by building a partner program for your business.
Remember: by providing accreditation, you will be able to bring in new partners and attract new audiences to your business by tapping into your partners’ existing and similar customer bases. By providing certifications, you will be able to create a new revenue stream for your business by attracting people looking to gain the experience and knowledge you offer, and help your customers achieve their goals.
3. Increase customer retention and satisfaction with an online Customer Education program
What is Customer Education?
Customer Education is the process of educating your customers about your product or service and equipping them with the knowledge and skills necessary to experience success and get the most value possible from what you offer.
Companies succeed with Customer Education when they take the time to get to know their customers and their experiences in depth in order to address their biggest pain points and obstacles when it comes to interacting with their businesses’ services and products through education.
How Customer Education Can Help Your Business “Retain” Customers and Increase Revenue
When a customer knows how to efficiently use your products and services, they are more likely to stay around long-term to continue to engage with and invest in your business, reducing your customer “churn” rate.
By providing helpful information and education for your customers in an efficient and engaging manner when they need it, you can significantly decrease the amount of customers that “leave” your business due to a lack of confidence using your products and services.
How To Create Your Customer Education Program
If you are constantly answering frequent questions about use of your products and services and your Customer Success Team is often busy addressing similar questions and concerns, it might be a good time to start thinking about implementing a Customer Education Program.
There are multiple forms of content that you can leverage to educate your customers such as:
- FAQ pages
- Knowledge bases with specialized information on how to use your products and services
- Blogs that dive into topics your customers are interested in, and help them succeed with your product/service
- On-demand videos, tutorials, screen recordings and product demonstrations
- In person training
- Case studies
While your business may already have multiple forms of educational content available for customers, you want to make it as easy and seamless as possible for your customers to access the information they need when they need it. That’s where a learning management system comes in.
Instead of using an approach with multiple forms of content, information, and education dispersed across different channels and areas of your business for your customers to find, it’s best practice to collapse it all into one manageable channel that makes it easy for your customers to learn and remain engaged: an online course.
With on-demand online courses available to them, your customers will be able to access all of the information they need in one place, learn at their own pace, and revisit lessons whenever they need it. They will become more confident in their use of your products and services, and become more engaged with your business and offerings over time, increasing your revenue by saving you thousands of dollars in customer churn.
Create Your First Online Course For Business Growth
For a business that has already established demand for their products and services, it’s necessary to continue to create strategies for growth to ensure long term success.
There are many different ways that online learning can support your business growth depending on your goals and objectives.
To scale your business and expand its revenue through online courses, first it’s important to check-in on where you currently are and where you are headed in your business. You will need to gain a clear understanding of your current business operations, offerings, customer base, and customer journey.
To gain more direction on where you want to go, It’s important to check-in with your team and discuss what your current priorities are for the business:
- Are you looking to increase your customer retention?
- Are you looking to attract new customers and diversify your audience?
- Or are you looking to create entirely new revenue streams by reaching into new markets?
Once you have come to an agreement on what your #1 priority is as a team, you will have a starting point for creating your first course. Now, the next steps are creating your course content and selecting the right platform to host online courses for your business.
Choose Your Online Course Topic
You’ve reflected on your businesses’ priorities and goals, gotten buy-in from your team, and have now decided to create an online course for your business. Congratulations! Now, it’s time to select your course topic, outline your course curriculum and create your course. You might be asking yourself: Where do I start?
Consider the questions below when selecting a course topic to keep your business objectives in mind:
- What is my customer’s biggest pain point right now, and how can I address it by providing education and information in my online course?
- What information does my ideal customer need to know to utilize my product/service to the best of their advantage?
- How can I provide my knowledge and expertise to my audience in a manner that will allow them to apply and certify their learnings to achieve their goals?
Tip: Avoid Information Overload
When selecting the first few topics you are going to cover in your online courses, it is best practice to break down the information that you are trying to share with people into subtopics. This will help you avoid committing the mistake of trying to fit everything you know into one single course and overwhelming your future “students” with information.
For example: Instead of teaching “Marketing”, try diving deeper into a sub-topic: “Best Strategies In Real Estate Marketing”
Once you have given these questions some thought and have narrowed down your course topic, you can start creating your course curriculum and content.
Outline and Create Your Course Content
When it comes to outlining and creating your course content, your goal is to deliver a transformative learning experience that brings your customers and/or business partners to their desired future state. You will want to ensure that your content is structured in a way that keeps learners engaged, interested, and satisfied throughout the course so that they are able to complete it in a timely and efficient manner.
Incorporate a combination of teaching methods in your online course to personalize the learning experience and keep your learners motivated to continue their learning. Some examples of teaching methods to consider incorporating in your online course are:
- Verbal lessons
- Visual materials
- Interactive elements
- Quizzes and Surveys
- Live lessons
- Email check-ins
Remember to create opportunities for your learners to provide their feedback and ask any questions they may have by including surveys, reviews, and FAQ documents in your courses. This will allow you to gain insights into the preferences of your business partners and customers, and make improvements to your course material for the future.
Selecting an LMS
Once you have outlined and created your first online course for your business, you will want to select the right LMS to host it. Here are some things to consider when choosing between the different learning management systems available for your business:
- Customization: Building dynamic lessons and courses with multimedia content in your program will help you keep your customers and business partners engaged and motivated to come back to continue their learning journey. Ensure that you choose a platform for your program that allows you to bring your distinct vision to life with flexible content options such as live lessons, unlimited video, communities, assessments, and much more.
- Scalability: As your business and online programs scale, so will your customer base and online education needs. As you grow the number of customers in your audience and expand on your offerings, you will want to select a platform that can scale with you and cater to your businesses’ growing needs without limitations.
- Insights and Progress Tracking: Having an understanding of how your customers are interacting with your education program will allow you to identify areas of opportunity and improvement for the future. To provide a quality learning experience for your customers and business partners in your program and continue to optimize your learning content to ensure it provides value, you will want to search for a platform that allows you to track your customer’s learning progress, and can provide insights on their experience as “students”.
Ready to start generating revenue for your business?
With Thinkific Plus, you can build, design, market, and host your online courses that are easily accessible to your customers and business partners. Thinkific Plus is a scalable platform that is simple to maintain, seamlessly integrates with your existing software, and is customizable for your brand needs. Schedule a call to try it for free.