Online learning is one of the most effective ways to teach users how to succeed with new tools and features. However, there are many different ways to deliver digital learning content to your users. You can house your resources in a traditional online help center or publish them on your blog, but this requires the user to stop and search for resources every time they need help.
Embedded learning integrates the learning experience directly into the user’s everyday interactions with the tools they use. This integration can create a much more manageable and convenient learning experience for the user.
Embedded learning is only one aspect of user education, but it’s important enough to warrant its own separate explanation. If your customer education program is not currently using embedded learning, you may be able to improve your strategy significantly by incorporating it.
Let’s break down how embedded learning works and evaluate some of its benefits. We’ll also discuss some examples of companies that have succeeded with embedded learning.
What's Embedded Learning?
Before we get ahead of ourselves — what’s embedded learning? Embedded learning is any type of learning that’s integrated directly into the tools your users are using. Embedded learning makes resources extremely easy to access since users do not need to stop and try to locate the resources on their own.
For example, Hubspot users can access resources to help them set up campaigns without leaving the website, and Instacart drivers can access resources within the mobile app while they’re on a delivery.
Why's Embedded Learning Important?
Now that we’ve laid out a basic embedded learning meaning, the question is: why’s embedded learning important? Embedded education serves a few different purposes and has several significant advantages over other forms of online learning. Here are a few of the most notable examples:
One of the most obvious advantages of embedded learning is that it’s more convenient for your organization’s users. It’s safe to assume most of your users are busy people who don’t have time to dig through libraries of educational content when they need to figure out how to use a specific feature.
You can make it easy for users to quickly locate the resources they need by embedding them directly into the features themselves. If a user needs help, they can access the relevant content right then and there. Using embedded learning to create more convenient learning experiences for users can lead to all kinds of different benefits, like increased customer satisfaction, higher product adoption or higher productivity among employees.
Your users already have to juggle a hundred other tools and apps. They don’t need to add one more to the list whenever they need to look up a piece of information about your software. By embedding your learning content, you can consolidate the tools your users have to flip between daily.
The benefit comes back to convenience once again. It’s all about making the experience simpler for the user. Bringing education to the user and reducing the number of apps they have to open is one way to make life simpler for them.
Amid all the talk about convenience, it’s easy to overlook the issue of relevance. Whether your resources are convenient to access or not, availability is the bare minimum. Embedded learning ensures a user never has to waste time searching through mountains of content that isn’t relevant, unable to find a resource that contains the information they need. Instead, users can access relevant content at their point of need without spending time sorting through irrelevant content themselves.
From a business perspective, embedded learning is a much more efficient form of user education than many other methods. A well-educated user base is in your best interests, as it leads to faster product adoption, lower churn and many other benefits.
When your learning resources are embedded in your software, your user education team can easily update or add to your resources from a centralized location for all users to access. You don’t need to re-train users every time you update your resources because they can access the latest information right where they need it.
Embedded learning is also perfect for onboarding because it enables users to onboard themselves at their own pace. Self-paced onboarding can create a better learning experience for the user as well as reduce onboarding expenses for the business.
In addition, it’s nearly impossible for new customers or employees to learn everything they need to know right away. Embedded learning provides users with continuous opportunities to learn naturally as they use the tools, even after the official onboarding process is done.
Embedded Learning: The Future is Here
Online learning is nothing new. Although it still hasn’t been fully adopted everywhere, it’s certainly become the standard method of training users in many industries. However, many organizations still have yet to take advantage of the benefits of embedded learning. Embedding learning opportunities within the tools your users interact with is a great way to improve their learning experience by making it more relevant and more convenient. Embedded learning can also benefit your business directly by improving efficiency and making onboarding easier.
One reason some companies hesitate to embrace embedded learning is that they fear the change will be too difficult. However, there are ways to implement embedded learning without much hassle at all. Northpass is a learning management system (LMS) that SaaS companies can use to embed learning content directly within their apps. Northpass is a comprehensive user education solution that makes it simple to leverage embedded learning to improve your organization’s online learning outcomes.