The article was last updated on August 23rd 2016.
We decided to dedicate this post to course subscriptions selling methods.
Currently there are two ways to organize the selling of course subscriptions:
- Using the native JoomlaLMS eCommerce tools.
- Using the JoomlaLMS – VirtueMart integration.
Both methods have their own advantages and disadvantages – that is why it is necessary to use them according to specific needs. Let’s review both methods in more detail.
Using native JoomlaLMS eCommerce tools
This method is more convenient if you need to sell only course subscriptions and nothing else.
The main advantages of this method:
- Simplicity of configuration.
- Five payment processors are available: Authorize.net , PayPal Standard , Offline Bank transfer , WorldPay Select Junior, 2Checkout .
The main disadvantages of this method:
- Inability to sell additional goods, you can sell only course subscriptions.
- There is no opportunity to decorate the catalogue (add an image, a description).
Using the JoomlaLMS – VirtueMart integration
It often happens so that besides course subscriptions you need to sell other learning materials such as books, CDs, textbooks etc. In this case you have an opportunity to organize a full-blown online shop using the integration of JoomlaLMS with VirtueMart, a popular component for the Internet store creation.
The main advantages of Virtuemart:
- A large number of modules and extensions for Virtuemart.
- Intuitive configuration and usage.
- A system of special offers that can be shown at any site page.
- Modules allowing payments via WebMoney etc.
- A large number of payment processors: 2Checkout, Credit Card, Credit Card (eProcessingNetwork), Credit Card (PayMeNow), Dankort/PBS via ePay, eCheck.net, eWay, iKobo, iTransact, NoChex, PayMate, PayPal (Legacy), PayPal (new API), PaySbuy, Verisign PayFlow Pro, WorldPay, MerchantWarrior, Purchase Order, Cash On Delivery.
- An opportunity to work with sellers and clients’ databases.
- A convenient order system.
- An opportunity to create goods catalogue without online store functionality.
The main disadvantages of Virtuemart:
- A large number of queries sent to database.
- It is often necessary to modify the VirtueMart layout as the default design is very simple.
- Not all online store settings are configured in admin control panel. In order to edit some of them it is necessary to modify the source code of the component (e.g. to hide the information about taxes).
via native JoomlaLMS eCommerce tools
In order to sell a course subscription using JoomlaLMS native tools it is necessary to follow these steps:
- Enter admin control panel: Components >> JoomlaLMS >> Subscriptions >> Add subscription. Specify the necessary data for the subscription (image 1) and save it.
Image 1 Subscription creation in JoomlaLMS
- The subscription will appear in the list of subscriptions on the site (image 2).
Image 2 A new subscription in the list of subscriptions on the site
- After purchasing a subscription the user is enrolled in a course automatically.
Starting version 2.0.x it is possible to configure course subscription settings at the third step of a course builder.
Using JoomlaLMS-VirtueMart integration
In order to sell a course subscription using VirtueMart, it is necessary to follow these steps:
- Create a subscription in JoomlaLMS.
- Enter admin control panel of the online store: Components >> VirtueMart >> Products >> Add product and add a new product (image 3).
Image 3 Adding a new product in VirtueMart
- Then it is necessary to establish the connection between the new subscription and the created in VirtueMart product. Enter admin control panel: Components >> JoomlaLMS-VirtueMart integration usage basics >> Products/Courses list and create an association between the new product and the subscription created in JoomlaLMS (image 4) and save it.
Image 4 Establishing an association between the subscription and VirtueMart product using the component integration
- As a result the subscription will be added to the list of VirtueMart products (image 5).
Image 5 Subscription product in the list of VirtueMart products
- After all the above mentioned this subscription can be purchased like any other product (image 6).
Image 6 A new subscription on the site
We can make the following conclusion from the above mentioned: any method of JoomlaLMS course subscriptions selling will justify its choice for sure. You just need to set the aims and goals correctly and think over the strategy of the site further development. If you need to sell some other goods besides course subscriptions in future then choose VirtueMart. If you are sure that you won’t sell anything other than course subscriptions then native JoomlaLMS eCommerce tools will be sufficient.