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10 LMS Pricing Models


July 27, 2022



10 LMS Pricing Models

LMS pricing models consider multiple factors, such as the number of users, available features, and duration. As such, it may be tricky finding the right option to work within your means and type of training. In this article, let’s look into different app pricing models to help you determine what fits your organization’s budget to conduct your training.

1. Free 

This LMS pricing model means that users will have access to the basic features of an LMS with no charges whatsoever, and will only need to pay if more advanced features are needed. This is very ideal for small organizations that work on a tight budget and are looking to save on upfront costs while having a functional LMS that works for their most basic needs. 

SC Training (formerly EdApp) website landing page with a sample of an elearning course

Most learning platforms come with a hefty price tag with features that small companies may not need, while others may come free but lacking in essential features. But SC Training (formerly EdApp) is an excellent example of a type of LMS with a free plan. Available for free for up to 10 users, this feature-rich LMS is perfect for individuals or small teams.

With its goal to democratize learning, it provides users with an intuitive authoring tool and an editable course library, so you can deliver training quickly and hassle-free. Whether you need to GMP training courses for your manufacturers, digital marketing training for your marketing team, or food protection training courses for your restaurant crew, you are sure to find something relevant in this platform.

It also offers gamification, analytics, mobile accessibility, and many more. SC Training (formerly EdApp) has even partnered with organizations like UNITAR and YouthhubAfrica to support and provide life-changing learning.

Sign up for Free and Start Using the Top LMS with the Best Pricing Model

2. Subscription

The subscription model involves paying a one-time fee that’s good for a certain period of time, commonly annually. This is ideal for organizations who don’t want to be bothered by recurring payments and want to get all features that they need in one easy payment.

Pricing list pack: Basic, Standard, and Premium pricing on a website

This pricing model usually comes with a pre-determined set of features, such as a set number of users (whether active or not), a number of courses, and more. If extra features or services are needed, additional fees may be required by the vendor. This type of pricing model usually has a commitment period or a contract of 2 years or more.

3. Active Number of Users

As the name implies, this pricing model is based on the number of active users in an LMS. This means that companies will only be charged for users who are logged in to the system during the billing cycle. This is an economical solution for organizations with employees who just need to take training for short amounts of time or user groups who need training that varies over time. This means that a certain number of users can be registered, but there’s usually a limit as to how many active users can interact with the LMS. A downside of this is that if you exceed the number of active users and aren’t able to determine it in such time, it can come costly in the long run as you’ll have to pay for every active user beyond the allowed limit.

Illustration of different people working on different devices

4. Custom pricing

Custom pricing is a flexible LMS pricing model for those organizations who find packages not viable for their daily needs. This pricing is perfect for those who may not want or need all the features that come with a pre-determined package and don’t want to pay the full price. By limiting the features to the most basic ones or to only those they need to conduct training, the cost can significantly go down as compared to the cost of a complete version of an LMS.

Illustration of a course creator with icons of different functions

5. Pay-as-you-go

The pay-as-you-go LMS pricing model can be a good option for those who are just starting out with employee training. Pay as you go means that you’ll only be charged for how often you use an LMS. This means that the price you’ll pay is directly linked to usage. This pricing model usually comes with full features and functionality, which will allow you to test the waters before deciding to get a more substantial subscription. It saves on cost during off-peak periods but can become dramatically pricey when there comes a time that you’ll need a huge amount of users to actually use the platform.

A person signing in on a log-in page

6. Pay-per-learner

The pay-per-learner pricing model is best for those who are able to account for the exact number of users who will undergo training and will be surely using the LMS for a specific amount of time. An upfront fee is charged depending on how many users register, regardless if they actively use the LMS or not. This simplifies the payment process as you’ll know exactly how much to pay in a certain period of time. To get the most out of this pricing model, you’ll have to make sure that all registered users are using it to the fullest extent. Otherwise, you may end up paying for inactive users, which isn’t exactly budget-friendly.

Illustration of a diverse set of users as icons

7. Duration-based pricing

A duration-based pricing model is all about the commitment of an organization to acquire a license for a certain time. It takes into consideration the length of time you’ll be using the LMS, and charges for that duration. This usually comes with unlimited usage of the platform with an agreed-upon number of users. Once your subscription expires, you’ll have the option to renew it for an extended period. This type of pricing model may come with a lock-in period, which means that you’ll have to carefully select which LMS you’re subscribing to. This is because there may be exit fees involved or no refunds provided in case you decide to switch providers or end the service.

Illustration of a woman on her laptop sitting on a huge calendar while a timer is ticking behind her

8. Perpetual licensing

With this pricing model, you’ll never have to worry about monthly or annual fees as ownership can be attained with a one-time upfront payment. While this traditional pricing model may sound like a hassle-free purchase, it may be time-consuming and tedious to set up in all your systems, which can also come with an additional fee. While perpetual licensing means that you don’t have to worry about recurring payments, you’ll still have to pay maintenance and upkeep fees or a certain amount to get updates or upgrades.

An illustration of a person making an online payment

9. Open-source

Open-source means that source code for an LMS can be shared, distributed, and modified. Any developer can make changes to the platform without having to think of ownership fees. While many may think that it’s totally free, there are some costs associated with it, such as implementation and hosting. The good news though is that you can take the driver’s seat when it comes to applying changes and updates without having to rely and wait on a vendor to get the features you need. If you don’t have a dedicated offshore software developer though, you may have to consider outsourcing, which can become costly in the long term.

An illustration of two people working a a software, one person is sitting on their computer, the other designing the product

10. Pay per course

This pricing model is intended for organizations who intend to just make use of an LMS’s course library to roll out training. This is common for those who want to take advantage of the third-party distribution of course providers. They don’t necessarily need to make their own learning content and are looking for training certificate resources. Industries that are reliant on compliance training and certificate courses are usually the target market of this pricing model. With this pricing model, there’s no need to pay for a full LMS for compliance training, and can save costs since other functionalities are not needed.

Illustration of a woman taking an online course, and there is an instructor in front of her popping out of a screen


Gabrielle Rivera

Gabrielle is an eLearning content writer for SC Training (formerly EdApp), a microlearning solution designed for today's digital habits. She creates content about cutting-edge learning technologies and resources to help companies deliver great training experiences. When not absorbed in writing, she spends her time playing video games and reading books.

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