So you’ve just bought learndash and you want to create your first course, but wait…
- How are they going to register, edit their profile, move through the course?
- What experience are they going to have?
And thats where the hard work starts
Learndash is a great plugin that offers a really easy to set up course that you can self host on your WordPress website, but it is just a course plugin. If you want all the other stuff you are going to need to use a number of different plugins or addons. The good news is that Learndash integrates with a number of ‘free’ plugins and addons, so lets go through a few I’ve used:
I have used a few different ones for registering new students on a training site, but perhaps the easiest if you are thinking of charging for your courses, which to be honest, why wouldn’t you be, is Woocommerce
This allows you to both sell your courses as products and register your students as subscribers on your website, without them having access to the backend of WordPress. So, if you want to provide a free course, then you can still use this plugin to register students to your course, but set the price to zero. The ‘account’s’ page is quite basic, but it does offer registration functionality
Another one is ProfileBuilder, which allows you to use shortcodes to create registration forms, logins and profile pages. You can choose whether a user uses their username or email address to register and it allows your students to change their email address and password. There are also premium versions of this plugin, which give you even more options
Uncanny owl offers a number of different features for Learndash, including registration, a login form, login redirect, resume capabilities and more. Without the uncanny owl plugin, your students learning experience will suffer. Though the uncanny owl add-on is free, it does offer even more functionality through its paid version.
The PayPal and stripe add-ons are useful if you decide not to use Woocommerce and you can use these gateway to quickly and easily accept payments. The advantage of using Woocommerce is the ability to set up an attractive ‘shop window’ to sell your courses. Though if you decide to use the Course Grid add-on then you may not require the Woocommerce plugin.
Course Grid is a Learndash add-on which allows you to create a library of all of your courses on 1 page. The grid shows the course price and whether or not a user has already enrolled. Once enrolled it shows the progress your student has made, which makes it quite a useful function
BadgeOS provides a way of creating achievements and rewards as your students progress through your course. Using trophies and badges as part of the course can help to engage your students, encourage them to continue the course and create a better learning experience for them.
WPS Hide Login
WPS Hide Login lets you easily and safely change the url of the login form page to anything you want, so that your wp-admin directory and wp-login.php page become inaccessible. You do need to remember the url, otherwise you will find that you can’t log in to your own account.
Your WordPress site
Of course, this is only the ones I’ve used to enable the learndash element of the site to work correctly. You will also need to consider what plugins you need to ensure the WordPress site works effectively, such as Yoast SEO, Contact Form 7 or similar, so people can get in contact, Monster Insights for your google analytics, one to provide a cookie notice, SG optimiser for caching your website and Updraft plus for backing up your site.
This feels like quite a list of plugins, but each has its own functionality and together they provide a great user experience. Most of them are free, although you may want to purchase premium versions of some, to further customise your online platform
If you really want to create a course, but this feels too technical, or you just don’t have the time or inclination to spend learning how all of these plugins integrate and work together, then why not send me a message and we can discuss how I can support you in your new adventure