Top-6 Features to Increase EdTech Revenue

The modern EdTech industry encompasses Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), Learning Management Systems (LMS), and mobile apps for them, webinars, content authoring tools, and much more. It is a dynamically growing market, which was boosted by at least 25% due to the COVID-2019 pandemic and the consequent lockdowns across the globe. Statista research predicts the worldwide e-Learning market evaluation to surpass $243 billion by 2022.
The total amount of investment in EdTech solutions is projected to double from $152 billion in 2018 to $342 billion in 2025. This is a clear indication that EdTech is a highly profitable market with ample opportunities worth investing time and effort into. Indeed, as 2019 e-Learning research from shows, 72% of schools already use cloud collaboration platforms in their curriculum, nearly 60% provide their students with mobile devices for studies and almost 50% provide online education.

These numbers undoubtedly went up due to pandemic-induced lockdowns. Add the ever-continuing adoption of Industry 4.0 across various niches. Consider also that blended learning now accounts for 69% of corporate education and training— and you will see why 2020 is a great year to hop on the EdTech wagon and cut yourself a piece of that multi-billion e-learning pie.

However, to be successful in this highly competitive market and drive good revenue, you must pay attention to 6 important EdTech features and trends listed below.

E-learning adoption in facts

1. Continuous work on customer retention

Selling your product once gives you revenue, making sure your customers keep using it ensures long-term success. e-Learning is all about continuity of training so that customers leverage your solutions time and again — and for that, they should be satisfied with their customer experience. This can be boosted through providing an intuitive end-user journey, regularly adding extra features, running various loyalty programs, etc.

ExxonMobil uses an LMS to train new shifts of employees to work their oil rigs while they are still on solid soil. Before the emergence of Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality (AR/VR) technology, such training mostly consisted of videos showing various aspects of oil rig workflows, and the learners had to memorize all the operations.

However, once reliable VR sets became available, the LMS developer released their support as a new feature. Thus, learners can operate oil rig systems in simulated environments and practice their skills in fast-paced emulations. This helped reduce the average time spent training by nearly 23%, greatly increasing the cost-efficiency of personnel onboarding. Currently, other oil & gas companies follow suit, implementing AR/VR-based training programs.

Another example is replacing actual biology and chemistry laboratories with virtual labs. This helps avoid spending budgets on consumables, remove the risk of accidents and provide training to thousands of students at once, instead of a single biology or chemistry class at a time.

Thus said, retaining your customers is one of the most crucial tasks for any business. According to the results of our research of the challenges of building an EdTech company, every fourth founder named working on customer retention their primary objective to ensure increased revenue.
Customer retention rates can be boosted through providing an intuitive end-user journey, regularly adding extra features, gamification.

2. Intuitiveness and usability

It does not matter how useful your EdTech solution is, if the end-users find it hard to use. Thus, user experience is the key aspect of the long-term satisfaction of your customers and engagement of end-users. Even small UI/UX details can be very empowering (or detrimental) and affect the chances of market success for your product.

  • Use minimalistic and clean design. The course's enrollment page must be straightforward and lead the user to that Buy or Enroll buttons without distractions and chasing squirrels.

  • Use convenient page formatting and navigation. Any action on your course should be done with 3-5 clicks, no more. Forget about multi-layered drop-down menus.

  • Use mobile-friendly and adaptive design, as 80% of users will assess your products on the move, from their mobile devices

  • Use microlearning — small chunks of learning concentrated around 1 idea. The users must be able to watch the video, do the exercises, read additional materials, complete some quizzes and pass the exams within the span of 2-4 hours

  • Use customer feedback to continuously improve your product, as explained in the previous paragraph
This way your customers will work with an intuitive and effective training solution that evolves along with their needs, and will not want to change the platform.

3. In-depth analytics and assessment

It is paramount to continuously track, assess and analyze user experience with your product to ensure the best e-Learning outcomes, high end-user engagement, and positive user experience. This can be achieved by processing 2 types of analytics:

  • Descriptive analytics — based on historical data, these show the reasons for past mistakes, so you can work on rectifying them and improving the experience in the future.

  • Predictive analytics — based on real-time data input, these highlight room for growth within the current course, so you can try to adjust the things on the go and measure the improvements on the fly.
E-learning platform metrics that matter
To achieve such results, LMS vendors should select appropriate data analytics AI algorithms and ML models to measure important things:

  • Course completion rates — the basic parameter, showing if your content is needed and understandable. If the rates are low, further analysis should show the performance roadblocks and room for growth to improve the learning outcomes.

  • Learner performance and progress — while every person has unique preferences and consumes e-Learning materials at their own pace, the aggregated average data is very representative. Should the majority of learners fall behind your estimated schedule — the course content is too complicated and should be adjusted.

  • Learner satisfaction and approval — regular feedback requests and open communication channels help you be in the loop and assess the level of learner satisfaction with your LMS functionality and e-Learning content.

  • Instructor and manager ratings — the best course can perform badly if the staff is slacking or not too learner-friendly. The learners should be able to rate their course management, anonymously or not, to enable you to take action if needed.

  • Learner competency and proficiency — various quizzes and questionnaires completed within tight time frames help assess the level of information consumption, which is essential for driving the core value of e-Learning — providing new knowledge and skills to end-users.
Tracking these parameters helps leverage the following benefits of e-Learning analytics:

  • Improved performance and retention. When your instructors can track learner performance individually, they can identify the course users who fall behind. They can then intervene and provide additional tutoring to help improve their performance and decrease dropout rates.

  • Improved course content quality. Personal and aggregated analytics help identify content consumption patterns, highlight course content issues and enable delivering personalized experiences for every learner (adaptive learning). For example, top performers can be given access to additional materials while the rest of the group catches up to them, or people that have some knowledge of the course topic can be allowed to consume it on their own pace to keep them engaged.

  • Proactive curriculum design. Studying aggregated course analytics helps understand the patterns your learners' exhibit and provides a curriculum design that facilitates achieving the best e-Learning outcomes and course completion.

  • Cost-efficient allocation of resources. e-Learning analytics show which course content works well, and which does not. This helps adjust course content and invest your time and money selectively to increase end-user satisfaction.

  • Improved e-Learning experiences for learners. Real-time analysis of every individual student's rate of task completion and outcomes can highlight potential roadblocks, identify their learning preferences and help adjust their e-Learning journeys to ensure maximum performance and positive user experience.
Thus, e-Learning analytics are essential for ensuring your learners are satisfied and your content achieves the expected goals.

The Challenges of Building an EdTech Company.

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4. Conversion by design

No matter how useful your course content is, nobody is going to complete it if it is poorly structured, lacks interactivity and does not drive learner engagement. This is why the majority of EdTech market players are concentrating on two major goals:

  • building solutions that integrate multiple content types

  • ensuring the end-user journeys are engaging and motivational

There are two main approaches to converting one-time students into life-long learners that will consume your services for years: instructional and design strategies.

Multiple instructional strategies help provide engagement and entertainment — Storytelling, Case studies, Scenario-based simulations, Guided learning, or Learning through Exploration and Discovery (LEAD). The audience, course subject and e-Learning environment you provide will determine the appropriate instructional strategies.

Various design strategy factors are vital for creating great e-Learning content: Interactivities, Professional voiceovers, Visual branding with company styles and logos, etc. Providing a variety of visual content elements, like vector images, clearly readable fonts, positive color palette, etc. helps enable positive user journeys.

Build your e-Learning content to be adaptive, modular and customizable. You should be able to adjust the course to meet the needs of your learners and keep them progressing towards completion.

5. Personalized edutainment

Personalization is one of the key aspects of a successful e-Learning process. Integrating Artificial Intelligence to enable real-time analytics helps personalize learner journeys and keep them motivated and entertained. This is why AI's popularity in education is skyrocketing, and the value of AI in EdTech is expected to reach $3.6 billion by 2023.

Use the following tips to personalize the e-Learning journey for your users:

  • Use pre-course questionnaires at enrollment, to assess the existing level of knowledge on the course topic and filter learners

  • Use the data from these tests to identify each user's learning preferences, knowledge gaps and confidence levels — and adjust your course content to fit their particular needs

  • Build your course modular (complete with theory, exercises, polls, expert guidance, etc) and create rules on the sequence of showing each module. This way the experienced in the course topic learners can skip the basics and move on to the next tasks, etc.

  • Alternatively, highly confident but inexperienced learners might need some challenging tests with expert guidance. This will help them adjust their expectations without losing confidence and route them to appropriate modules to close their skill gaps and provide the required knowledge.

Through providing personalized e-Learning, you can ensure the learners remain motivated, engaged and entertained, which leads to positive training outcomes and lets them come back for more, increasing your revenue.

6. Immersion and gamification implementation

Immersion and gamification in online education
E-Learning gamification went a long way from badges and dashboards it started with. Nowadays, VR/AR solutions are used in various niches, from K-12 education to professional training to provide immersive and engaging education. Chemistry students can perform safe experiments, while biology and surgery students can train in virtual environments, without endangering patient's lives. ABI Research states the global market share of VR-based immersive education will grow to $6.3 billion by 2020.

The e-Learning industry attracts ever-growing investments

Private and institutional investors amply support e-Learning startups and EdTech initiatives:
  • More than $32 billion were invested in EdTech over the past decade and Global EdTech Funding predicts the total volume of investments to reach $87 billion by 2030
  • AI/ML and AR/VR solutions are more and more commonplace in EdTech, providing a new level of learner engagement and performance, and the demand for them is growing
  • US EdTech market is the biggest globally, getting multi-million investments YoY, while EU authorities have invested more than $1 billion in various EdTech initiatives.
  • EdSurge database of public funding deals has reviewed 105 EdTech deals in the US in 2019 and claim them to amount to $1.66 billion in total, with the deal value average growing by 15%, as compared to 2018.
We can surely say EdTech is on the rise and does not show any signs of slowing. Global lockdowns induced by the pandemic have highlighted the importance of e-Learning once more, and the market is actively growing.

Every bold entrepreneur can invest in EdTech nowadays and be sure to get a cut of the e-Learning pie. COVID-19 pandemic acted as a catalyzer that showed the efficiency of Higher Education 4.0 — with EdTech features like AI-based big data analytics and personalization, adaptive content formats and course design, AR/VR immersive experiences, etc. The oncoming decade presents immense opportunities and carries a great promise.

We would be glad to hear your thoughts on the future of EdTech, and should you have any inquiries — we are always glad to assist!
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