There are all kinds of ways to use an online learning platform. The first thing that probably comes to mind is using an online learning platform to aid remote education in schools. However, this is just the tip of the iceberg. There are also online learning platforms for business that you can use to educate your customers, employees, partners, and gig workers.
Getting Started With an Online Learning Platform
One of the best ways you can use an online learning platform to benefit your business is by using it to help customers learn about your products. When you give your customers, employees, channel partners or gig workers ample learning materials, they're more likely to be happy with the products they purchase and more likely to remain customers.
Here's a breakdown of some of the advantages your business can gain by using an employee education platform.
Product adoption happens when customers realize the value of the product you're selling and regularly incorporate it into their lives. Companies like Facebook or Amazon have achieved excellent product adoption because they provide services that many people use every day. Offering customer education is essential because customers who understand how your product can benefit them are more likely to use it (and keep using it).
When customers become frustrated with your product or simply don't understand how to use it, they're very likely to stop using it. Why would they use a product that's not providing any value to them? But sometimes, it's not that the product doesn't provide value, the customer just doesn't recognize the value. That's why proactively educating your customers about how they can benefit from your product can help reduce churn or the rate you lose customers.
Decreased Time to Value
Even once a customer understands the value of your product, they're still not going to be fully convinced until they actually see that value firsthand. It's important for your product or service to deliver the value it promises as quickly as possible. You can cut down the time it takes the customer to learn how to use your products by offering a customer education platform.
Online Training Platforms For Employees
One of the other great uses of online training platforms for small businesses (or any business) is employee training. We aren't just talking about compliance training. While that's certainly important as well, online training platforms for employees can go even further. Here are some of the ways you can use an online learning system to help your employees succeed:
It's important to teach your customers about your products, but it's also just as important to teach your employees about them. Without well-rounded product knowledge, you can't expect employees to be able to sell the products effectively or help customers with product-related questions or issues. If you want your employees to be able to sell better and serve customers better, it's a good idea to implement an online employee training program.
You can also use a learning platform to help with leadership and management training. The people in leadership positions can gain just as much from product knowledge. On top of that, you can also offer training courses to help managers develop strong leadership skills so they can run the show effectively.
Product knowledge and leadership ability are both important, but it's also necessary to develop the practical skills to apply all that knowledge. Giving employees online learning opportunities can help them improve skills like teamwork and critical thinking.
Online Learning Platform Comparison
There's more than one way to educate your learners. While using online learning software is one of the best methods, not every platform is the same.
Even once you've decided to implement one, the online learning platform comparison process can still seem daunting.
Here are some of the features you should look for to help you find the best learning platform for employees and customers:
Scalability: The learning platform you choose should be able to support the needs of your whole user base. It should accommodate the size of your current user base and the size of your user base in the future. Better to plan for future growth than commit to an expensive online learning system that'll only have to be replaced in a year or two.
Customizability: Learning resources are usually most effective when tailored specifically to the learner. Choosing an online learning platform that allows a lot of room for customization is important if you want to give your users a personalized experience.
Goals: Of course, it's also essential to choose an online learning platform that aligns with your business goals. Do you want to create brand advocates? Decrease churn? Shorten time to value? The first step of your user education planning process should be to decide on your goals. This will allow you to direct all your efforts (including choosing a platform) toward achieving those goals.
Evaluating the Best Online Learning Platforms
There are plenty of online learning sites that offer very basic functionality. However, if you truly want to build a full-scale academy, you might be better off using an online learning platform.
This type of software can give you the tools you need to organize all your product education content in one place where it can be conveniently accessed by customers or employees.
Here are some more features that are common to the best online learning platforms:
Integrations: The ability to integrate the learning software you use with all the other technology your business is likely already using can be a huge benefit. One of the best ways to do this is to integrate the CRM your business uses with your learning platform. This can help provide customer insights and enable faster sales and better brand awareness.
Analytics: One advantage of an e-learning system that may not be immediately obvious is that it can provide you with valuable customer insights. The best online learning platforms can track detailed maetrics that you can use to continually improve your product education programs.
Pricing flexibility: Another important consideration is the price of the learning platform you're considering. You have to balance the initial dent in your bottom line with the future revenue the platform will drive. The right pricing model probably depends on the number of users you expect to be serving. If you have a small user base, it might be best to choose a platform that offers a pay per learner option. If you have a very large customer base, a licensing fee might be more cost-effective in the long run.
Check Out Some Online Learning Platform Examples
Adopting an online learning platform can profoundly impact a business's success. When customers are given the product information they need, they can become self-sufficient learners who are more likely to be satisfied with their products.
When employees are provided access to product information and skills training, they can become more productive workers who are better equipped to provide value to the company.
Here are some online learning platform examples that show how some companies are already using online learning platforms to reach their business goals:
Havenly is an interior design company that uses Northpass to train its employees on company design principles. When they considered their options for which learning management system to use, they knew that a few features were especially important.
These were ease of use — both for the people creating the content and for the employees learning from it — and customizability. It was important to them to be able to customize the formatting of their learning material.
Northpass was able to meet these requirements for them, and Havenly is now able to train their employees more effectively, which has also resulted in happier customers with the service they get.
SPS provides cloud-based supply chain technology that's used by suppliers, retailers and third-party logistics providers.
They needed a way to provide more than 40,000 customers with personalized training. Their end goals were to increase product adoption, provide better value to their customers and improve customer retention.
Northpass was able to help SPS create an intuitive learning center that can deliver relevant and personalized content to each learner. This has led to higher levels of customer engagement, improved product adoption, fewer customer support calls and overall higher customer satisfaction.