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10 Inexpensive LMS Solutions For Small Businesses And Startups

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This article has been updated with the best inexpensive LMS or learning management systems of 2019 so you’ll stay in-the-know about the latest in this software category.

Learning management systems (LMS) is an indispensable tool embraced by many organizations and enterprises to facilitate their corporate e-learning programs. Previously, corporate training was “gather all in one place” type of activity that ran from one day to one week and, depending on the need and schedule, usually happened yearly or even more frequently.

In this article, we gathered the top 10 LMS that are ideal for small businesses not only for their low cost but also because at their offered price points, they give the best return for your money.

What are the top 10 inexpensive LMS for small business or startups?

While regular training is deemed important for employees’ development and engagement, physical gatherings are expensive and disruptive of work. Then LMS arrived, spawned by the principles and benefits of distance learning and packaged in easy to use and always accessible cloud Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). LMS revolutionized the way corporate as well as academic training and education are created, conducted, and delivered.Leveraging the technologies of today’s digital connected world, LMS platforms are mostly online and web-based. You can also integrate communication tools with LMS software (check here the communication apps available to you), as well as use its built-in features to, among others, exchange files and documents, deliver courses and content, and reach and connect with learners in real-time wherever they are.

LMS effectively got rid of on-site trainings, reducing costs without compromising the effectiveness and quality of education. In fact, Zeqr infographic shows a forecast that 50% of classes will be delivered online in 2019. With so many LMS benefits to gain, you’ve got no reason not to try out the system for your corporate learning requirements. The elearning technology also continues to bring new advancements to improve its functionalities. In 2018, the e-learning trends that improved training delivery used video instructor-led training (VILT), interactive VILT, AR/VR, podcasts, and gamification according to eLearning Industry.

An important area that adds to the appeal of LMS is its pricing. Depending on deployment, features and capabilities, number of users, and other factors, you get a wide range of pricing options that can cater to enterprise-level learning requirements or the needs of smaller organizations. In this article, we recommend the best inexpensive LMS solutions that can fit small business budgets while providing robust and flexible features.
There are many LMS products to choose from according to your startup and small business requirements, scale, and budget. While budget is always a deciding factor, it’s worth noting that choosing a product that gives you excellent overall value for your investment is more cost-effective than simply selecting the most affordable choice.

1. Litmos LMS

In the corporate training world, LMS solution Litmos stands out with over 4 million users including SMBs, not-for-profits, and large enterprise companies. What makes the cloud-hosted software an attractive choice for the learning requirements of organizations big or small is its user-friendly yet powerful features and capabilities, aside from its range of affordable pricing packages. It unifies virtual, classroom, mobile, and social learning in a single, secure, scalable platform that can meet any organization’s training needs. If you want to check it out, you can sign up for Litmos free trial here.

SAP Litmos

This award is given to the best product in our LMS Software category. It highlights its superior quality and underlines the fact that it's a leader on the market.

SAP Litmos won our Best LMS Software Award Q2 2018

Our score
User satisfaction

With Litmos LMS, you can engage learners anytime through native apps for Android and iOS, extend your ecosystem by using prepackaged connectors and REST APIs, and protect your data through enterprise-level security. It offers a secured, centralized hub for training professionals to conduct employee, customer, compliance, and partner training. Its online course builder lets you add courses in modules and utilize embedded content creation tools which are all supported in multiple formats to ensure compatibility for any of your platform or device.

Pricing Plans:

Subscription pricing for LMS solutions is normally on a per user basis which means price per user per month. Others require a minimum number of users. Litmos LMS’ pricing plans are scalable to your company’s learning needs and number of learners whether they are 50 or a million users. For SMBs and startups, you may start at these plans:

  • PRO – $4/user/month for a minimum of 151 users up to 500 users
  • PRO + COURSES – $9/user/month for 50-150 users; $6/user/month for 151-500 users

2. Talent LMS

In our TalentLMS reviews, this cloud platform came out among the top ranked LMS software on the strength of its excellent offerings combined with its cost efficiency. It is designed to be user-friendly and built to make online learning and training fun and effective. It is flexible and configurable to be used in a variety of industries such as non-profit organizations, real estate, manufacturing, telecommunications, aviation, hospitality, call centers, IT, supply chain, and automotive, among others. If you want to test drive the features you can sign up for TalentLMS free trial here.

You can create eLearning courses which can be modified and reused with any of your preferred multimedia element. It supports Tin Can and SCORM, the content interoperability industry standards, to give you more control in creating engaging materials. Blending eLearning and instructor-led training is accomplished with ease either through physical classrooms or via video conference. Other features include certifications, e-commerce, gamification, communication tools, single-sign-on, API, and white labeling, among others.

Pricing Plans:

TalentLMS has five SMB and enterprise packages and you can start off with its Standard Plan that comes with three editions, including a free one.

  • Free – 5 users
  • Small – 25 users; $39/month or $29/month when billed annually
  • Basic – 100 users; $129/month or $99/month when billed annually

3. eFront

We’ve gone through the eFront details and discovered a powerful and fully adaptable learning management platform for businesses of different sizes. You get deployment flexibility with on-premise and cloud-based options, a mobile-optimized platform, and an e-commerce ready software equipped with advanced security tools, and fully customizable features. It supports open API and integration with over 200 services via Zapier to help you build your eLearning portal the way you want it. The vendor offers a great demo if you want to check the features without cost. An appealing offer is available when you can sign up for an eFront free demo here.

eFront allows you to streamline course building through content importing, blended learning, gamification, and advanced assessments. It offers mobile learning options and supports content interoperability standards, communication channels, and video-conferencing tools. You can further simplify course building by defining lesson orders and completion conditions. It also lets you undertake back office tasks such as audits, skill gap testing, archiving, and payment handling. The platform can be installed on most Linux and Windows machines and is compatible with all modern browsers.

Pricing Plans:

eFront offers four plans that are designed for big groups. You may think it’s expensive at first glance but remember that it caters to large-scale learners. For instance, the Business Plan, basically boils down to just $.75 per user.

  • Business Plan – $750 per month for up to 1000 users
  • Enterprise Plan – $1000 per month for up to 2000 users
  • Large Enterprise – $2000 per month for up to 5000 users
  • Tailored Plan – Custom pricing for over 5000 users

4. eCoach

Among eCoach benefits that you can gain are an intuitive interface, easy course creation, streamlined knowledge uptake, and simplified performance tracking across your organization, among others. The online platform combines an LMS and authoring tool combined in one platform that lets you create white label training content and deliver and track the content using the platform’s LMS functionality. You can utilize drag-and-drop authoring templates to create unlimited amount of engaging training content, and enhance your training files by including external links in courses. For a closer look at its features you can sign up for an eCoach free trial here.

eCoach allows you to build an extensive yet organized content library by making use of the unlimited storage and simple search and filter features that are offered. You can incorporate branding in your eCoach campus and take advantage of mobile optimized content to fit any screen. The software is capable of integrating with platforms such as Gmail, Salesforce, Shopify, and more. It can generate certifications when learners finish courses, subscribe new enrolments to mailing lists, or let you create your own automated actions based on learner behavior.

Pricing Plans:

eCoach offers three pricing packages, all of which include unlimited course creation, live chat support, all core LMS features, and free course templates.

  • Lite Plan – $99/mo, 100 Active Users
  • Growth Plan – $399/mo, 500 Active Users
  • Scale Plan – $899/mo, 5000 Active Users

5. WorkWize

WorkWize LMS features will introduce you to a fully automated course and policy compliance LMS designed to help training administrators and HR managers ensure compliance for their employees. It supports your training needs by automatically enrolling employees and emailing those reminders to make sure they fully conform to training regulations and policies required by their jobs, minimizing risk and governance issues for your organization. It can scale to the meet the needs of organizations from 100 employees to more than 100,000 and keep training compliance manageable. You can easily sign up for a WorkWize free trial here to start exploring its features.

The web-based platform comes with features to help you identify non-compliant teams, individuals or offices; document sign-off/distribution for proving acceptance and understanding; rapid course authoring for creating unlimited SCORM e-learning courses; and over 40 editable courses covering core compliance subjects. It integrates with most HR and payroll systems, uses tests and digital signature to confirm employee acceptance, combines risk assessment process with relevant e-learning, and offers tools to self-resolve most minor issues encountered during an assessment.

Pricing Plans:

Two plans are offered with prices going up depending on the plan and number of users.

  • Professional plan – starting at £4,200/year for up to 100 active users, or £3.5/user per month
  • Enterprise plan – starting at £6,700/year for up to 100 active users, or £5.58/user per month

6. TalentCards

Our TalentCards overview proved that an LMS solution need not be one big learning platform. TalentCards is the epitomy of a mobile LMS app that delivers micro-learning method to make information and content easy to understand. It lets you create learning cards on the web and deliver them while on the go. Learners get easy-to-digest learning resources, take tests to examine the knowledge gained, use gamification elements to review their performance, and train themselves anywhere, anytime from their mobile devices. The vendor has a comprehensive onboarding offer when you sign up for a TalentCards free trial here.

The focus on ease of content creation, learner experience, and micro-learning to enable you to create and distribute successful training programs make TalentCards a useful tool for workers educators and instructors as well as busy students and learners. With a flexible self-paced training method that empowers learners while reducing expenses and training complexity, you can mass train your employees with the use of their smartphones to learn from whatever location and at any time. It is equipped with an editing tool and a vast image stock library to let you create learning cards quickly and easily.

Pricing Plans:

TalentCards offers a free plan and four low-priced editions:

  • Free plan – $0/month for up to 5 users
  • Small plan – $49/month for up to 50 users
  • Basic plan – $79/month for up to 100 users
  • Plus plan – $179/month for up to 250 users
  • Premium plan – $279/month for up to 500 users
  • Enterprise – custom pricing for over 500 users

7. Schoology

Connecting people, content, and systems is the focus of academic and corporate LMS Schoology. It is being used by 20 million people across 50 states and 130 countries, offering learning packages for K-12 and higher education as well as corporate learning solutions for SMBs. Accessible from any device and offers a centralized curriculum management system to help you simplify communication between educators and learners, encourage collaboration, make data-informed decisions, as well as increase engagement among participants.

It is equipped with advanced analytics to let you measure the effectiveness of your eLearning efforts, automate your grading system, easily monitor the progress of your learners, and determine how you can improve lesson plans and assessment processes. Its open-access integration allows you to build flexible, self-paced courses and further optimize your operations using multiple third-party programs and custom application creation.

Pricing Plans:

Schoology is available in two pricing options. The Basic package can be used by students, parents, instructors, and advisors while the Enterprise plan for organization of any size is quote-based.

8. Blackboard

Education solutions provider Blackboard offers learning solutions for educational institutions, government agencies, and corporations. It merges course management, scalable design, and intuitive online learning together in one convenient platform equipped with comprehensive learning management tools, registration and reporting capabilities, as well as mass notification solutions. Being an online application, it is accessible on different platforms, devices and browsers for barrier-free learning.

Blackboard makes available collaboration tools to make sure users can work together and connect when it comes to projects and courses. Its browser-based, download-free, one-click virtual classrooms support HD audio and video and fast application sharing to help employees fulfill training requirements anywhere and anytime. It also lets you create and customize your eLearning portal may with hands-on platform training and technical services.

Pricing Plans:

Blackboard offers custom pricing for SMBs and enterprises, letting you tailor the learning platform to the specific needs and number of users in your organization.

9. eCoach

eCoach is an easy to use and intuitive LMS and authoring solution. For better structuring and management, this solution allows users to divide their branded LMS campuses with their own branding, complete with customizable logos, fonts, and colors. Permission settings can be assigned for more orderly trainings. With eCoach, learners can easily gain access to learning materials on any device. The platform is optimized for all types of devices and resizes the content to fit any screen.

eCoach was first conceived as a content authoring solution. Thus, it offers robust content creation tools that allow users to engaging learning materials. Various drag-and-drop authoring templates are available at your disposal for fast and easy creation of content. Engaging content, such audio and video materials, can be added in your courses to make learning more interesting. When it comes to assessing learner performance, eCoach provides users with both granular and visual reporting. Various data points can be dissected in each training course to gauge their overall performance.

Pricing Plans:

eCoach offers affordable pricing options that is dependent on the number of active users and monthly usage, with the more expensive packages offering a few more functionalities.

  • Lite (100 active users) – $99/mo
  • Growth (500 active users) – $399/mo
  • Scale (5,000 active users) – $899/mo

10. Bugle

Bugle is a video training platform designed for businesses and organizations that are looking to utilize an easy-to-use solution for creating and sharing video training materials. This software is user-friendly all throughout, from product deployment to publishing courses and administrating assessment tests. It can also be white-labeled to incorporate one’s branding elements, making it easy to maintain a consistent user experience for learners.

Bugle is able to reduce training costs significantly, as you can simply upload training videos on the platform and have them study at their own leisure. All training materials are also stored for nearly an indefinite period of time, giving every single learner a chance to review your learning materials. Tests, quizzes, surveys, and other types of assessment exams can be conducted with bugle to measure their knowledge and determine if they are well aware of their responsibilities.

Pricing Plans:

Bugle has a total of three enterprise pricing plans, with the more expensive options touting more functionalities. More details about the inclusions on each plan can be found on the vendor’s website.

  • Basic – €30/user/year
  • Interactive – €42/user/year
  • Community – €50/user/year

By Nestor Gilbert

Senior writer for FinancesOnline. If he is not writing about the booming SaaS and B2B industry, with special focus on developments in CRM and business intelligence software spaces, he is editing manuscripts for aspiring and veteran authors. He has compiled years of experience editing book titles and writing for popular marketing and technical publications.

Best Learning Management System - LMS of 2019

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