eLearning isn’t a new concept now. The word was introduced during a CBT systems seminar in 1999, followed by similar terms like “online learning.” The popularity of this teaching format has grown, especially in the past decade.
In 2019, the global LMS market was at over $9.4 billion. The COVID-19 pandemic could push the LMS market even further with an increased demand for remote learning options at all education levels, from young children starting school to adults furthering their education or training for jobs.
Top Performers in the Global Corporate LMS Market
You will likely notice some familiar names in the current list of top performers in the LMS market. Platforms like Docebo, Absorb Software, Adobe Systems, Schoology, Oracle, and IBM’s Kenexa hold significant places in the industry. They rank alongside Blackboard, Cypher Learning, Epignosis, Cornerstone Ondemand, Geenio, Expertus, iSpring, and Latitude CG.
Previous market reports divided platforms into two groups: on-site and on the cloud. Current events will likely emphasize the cloud version as businesses and schools search for ways to teach remotely. You can also check LMS reviews to learn more about specific products.
Top Trends in the 2020 LMS Market
As we enter the second half of 2020, many LMS companies recognize the need for expanded content. Users have skill gaps to fill and are motivated to make more types of learning available online. Some features are known, and others push into the previously unknown, with potentially exciting advancements to come.
- Content and Skill Expansion
eLearning content continues to change. It was primarily used for regulatory tracking and compliance in years’ past. Now, there is a wave of new content that’s flooding the market. These topics push away from compliance and into other areas including leadership and soft skill training.
The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) found that at least 30% of job applicants did not possess sufficient soft skills. The eLearning market is trying to bridge the gap with expanded course content that covers this and other previously underserved markets.
- Advanced Data Analytics
Data analytics isn’t a new feature, but it is one that remains in demand. Learning Technologies Awards 2019 eMagazine reported that 82% of L&D managers viewed analytics as one of the most important features in an LMS.
Companies are more data-driven than ever before, making this an essential find in most LMS platforms. Developers will likely continue to improve the way data is displayed and how users can filter, organize, and distribute reports.
- Improved Content Delivery
Content delivery is essential to success in eLearning. This is an area that continues to evolve. Many LMS developers are pushing for new and better ways to get content in front of the user’s audience. Popular methods include mobile learning, interactive videos, and social learning.
According to a Forrester Research Report, learners are 75% more likely to watch video content than read a text report. Smartphone users completed mobile courses 45% faster than those on PCs, according to Lynda.com.
These benefits could lead to a significant increase in profits and user counts, which is why many businesses are paying attention to how they deliver their eLearning content.
- Customer Education Features
Customer training and education have always played a significant role in eLearning. That is likely to continue or even increase this year and the next. Training has proven to attract prospects and convert them into paying customers. It also helps brands become authorities in their markets.
Research indicates that an educated customer base shows increased retention and overall satisfaction with the product. They are more likely to use a product long-term or even become brand advocates.
- AI Developments Move Forward
Users should expect to see artificial intelligence (AI) continue to emerge, but don’t get too excited. The technology is a work in progress and likely won’t show up to a significant extent this year.
That doesn’t mean that some LMS developers won’t find ways to use what is accessible. Some platforms offer AI or machine learning among their features. This tech can enhance the system’s function, but it will be limited in scope.
Advancements are being made, and they look promising. However, 2020 doesn’t look like it will be the year for a major emergence of AI in eLearning.
- An Increase in Integrations
Established businesses usually have a system or systems in place that they rely on. More LMS platforms are moving toward increased integration to connect to these systems. It gives users more flexibility in what they can do and how they access data.
Productized integrations are popular. They are pre-built connections that work with a target application. While the connection options may seem rigid, they can greatly expand functionality. Most can add CRM, CSM, finance, gamification, authoring, ecommerce, automation, SEO, fulfillment systems, and more.
Custom integrations work the same way but give the user the ability to choose which third-party or in-house app to use as the target product.
- VR, AR, and Mixed Reality
Virtual reality (VR), Augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality are more common now than ever before. They will likely continue to increase in popularity. Virtual reality is more accessible with companies developing the hardware needed for a fully immersive experience that’s gradually becoming more affordable and practical.
AR presents unique opportunities for real life teaching with enhanced elements. In the report A Survey of Augmented Reality, Dr. Ronald T. Azuma explains that “AR allows the user to see the real world, with virtual objects superimposed upon or composited with the real world.” He explains that this supplements reality rather than replacing it.
Mixed reality is similar to AR, however, instead of placing digital objects over the real world, it integrates them into it. The experience is intended to be more immersive and is compatible with hands-free devices.
Re-Analysis of a Post-Coronavirus LMS Market
The global LMS market is currently sitting at $13.4 billion. Markets Insider predicts that it will increase to $25.7 billion in the next five years with a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 14%. Others predict even higher numbers, up to over $29.9 billion with a CAGR of 21.13%.
LMS.org will continue to monitor the eLearning market and post new updates as they appear. Check back to learn more about the future of online learning and how people are staying connected at home.