27-28 February, 2019, London
As you may notice, I’ve added a new menu section on the website called “All Courses”. This is a place for all my current and future courses which I’m happy to share with you. I’ve been asked on Twitter the other day, “why don’t you use platforms such as Udemy?”. Having this question boiling in my mind for a couple of weeks I decided to write a post which should share the idea.
My website has been using Grav CMS for since 2015 I started blogging. On my first course preparation, I was looking for a platform where I can easily post video tutorials with additional features like Analytics, Questions, Lessons.
I’ve had a few choices to solve this issue:
Since 2015 I’ve customized my own blog design and fixed a couple of issues in core Grav PHP. This was the end of my experience using Grav CMS. I didn’t really want to dig into the details of building a complex solution like LMS on Grav. I would rather if time allows building LMS on Magento 2 and showing how to use all the best Magento practices. So the option to use Grav CMS and build something custom disappeared almost immediately.
It can be a very good exercise to build LMS in Magento 2, considering that there is no such extension available on the market. However, as we all know, or may guess, Magento 2 requires full-time allocation in order to build a fully functional and complex solution such as LMS.
I thought about hosting my courses on something like Udemy. However, considering that all content created for such resources becomes their own property once you submit it… And, low course margin which such resources proposes doesn’t really make sense in the long term (something like 70%). The price of the course is also controlled by Udemy and can’t be reasonably high to maintain it in the future.
Finally, I googled and found out that the only possible solution for me is to switch to a WordPress and purchase LMS. Of course, I am not a very big fan of WordPress, however, building LMS on Magento 2 isn’t really an option in 2018. So I decided to give it a try and go with this option.
Going back to the original question, the number one reason I decided to host my courses on the website is that I control and improve the user experience and content.
For example, in case a student contacts me and shares a valuable feedback on what can be improved in terms of content, the way the content is shared and exercises after each lesson the feedback can be quickly incorporated.
It also allows having fast communication in case there is a question related to the course topic.
For me, using the same platform for the blog and my courses decreases the time. Once I have the new video ready it takes a couple of minutes to prepare new Lesson or Topic and publish it for the students.
It is also important to have a relevant audience who really likes and reads the Magento 2 blog. Udemy hosts everything about everything, where my website is about Magento 2 and my personal experience building customizations.
One of the important parts of courses distribution is to control and work on a daily basis in order to improve Search Engine Optimization results. And here I mean organic relevancy. It is a way faster to do this if you control the website content from the start.
The price of the course is higher than regular price on Udemy. And that is because of everything which requires time and extra resources, including preparation time, recording tutorials and videos, editing videos, hosting videos on Vimeo, having LMS, maintaining the website, having the time to answer questions from students, hosting hangouts with students and marketing and distribution of the course.
It can take up to 12 hours to prepare and record a single tutorial video with the step by step explanation on how to write code in Magento 2. As a result of this, the single video for 5-10 minutes long is ready for your kind view. Multiplying by a number of videos, for Payment Integration in Magento 2 course, there are 85 videos. As a result, it takes months for building an online course.
The investment in your own future is the number one priority. You should consider it when thinking whether the price is high versus the experience you will gain passing the course. It allows you to raise your salary bar by 2-3 times after the course.
Are you ready to join the Magento Developer Community and gain new experience and skills in Magento 2? I will be happy to see you as one of our students. Feel free to observe the courses available on the website and decide which one is the best for you. More courses to come.
Max Pronko is an international Magento Expert, development consultant, motivational speaker and Magento award-winning developer. He is known for the educational development programs for organizations of all sizes and has positively affected thousands of people and organizations worldwide.
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