Top 6 Subscription Management Software for the Education Industry
With the advent of the internet, anyone with a functioning network connection can access the entire history of human knowledge, be it through a home PC, a laptop, or a mobile phone. Consequently, there are now a slew of online courses and boot camps that can be completed entirely online, without students ever having to step foot in a lecture hall. From photography masterclasses to crash courses in coding, there’s something for everyone. Many universities now also offer up online courses of their own to non-students.
When it comes to the management of these online courses (and offline courses to a lesser extent), subscription management software can simplify things for students, course leaders, and the heads of the schools themselves. Consider a student who wants to smoothly switch to a less-demanding course, for instance, or have the option to pay a little extra for additional contact hours with a virtual tutor. Or think of a tutor who wants to keep a detailed log of their student’s activities to see how often they’re accessing paid course materials.
In any case, subscription management software can help — but it can be tough to know which tool to use. Below, we’ll delve into 7 of the best subscription management services available today, giving you some valuable information to help you decide.
Chargebee is a subscription management solution that helps you manage recurring billing. It's a great option if your business primarily focuses on the recurring billing aspect of subscription management, and even has a specific focus on E-learning. The user can choose a set course fee and predictable pricing model, or allow learners to consume microunits as needed. Multiple courses can be bundled together, monthly plans can be offered, and if needed, these plans can then be upgraded to an annual billing schedule.
Overall, Chargbee makes an excellent default option given that choosing a subscription management service for education industry purposes can be a daunting task given the sheer amount of choice on offer. You can integrate it with a wide variety of payment gateways, track your revenue, and create invoices. Chargebee also offers a 14-day free trial, which makes it easy to test out the platform before committing to a paid plan.
If you’re looking to delve deep into the demographic data of your students, Profitwell could be a great choice. By breaking down data based on locations, usage, gender, and over 100 other categories, ProfitWell's Metrics tool helps businesses and educational institutions alike identify whether their subscriptions are successful or not — perfect for figuring out how to best tailor your educational offerings to prospective students. Additionally, it can seamlessly integrate with a variety of other platforms, using Profitwell’s Retain tool, you can reduce or even reverse the churn of your students. Over 25 languages (and counting!) and a granular analysis of failed payments make this tool perfect for serving international students, too.
By using the Price Intelligently tool, you can select the right subscription pricing model with ease. This tool takes into account factors such as feature and plan differentiation, price localization, and competitor analysis. For universities or online tutors with revenue recognition challenges, the Recognized tool delivers a level of precision unmatched by some other platforms. Best of all — Profitwell’s metrics tool is free (though you will have to pay to access all of its other subscription management features).
Chargeover is a subscription management platform that also offers billing and payment processing. The platform has a robust feature set that includes social login, automated communication with customers, and more. Chargeover has integrations with several business tools, including Zapier for custom integrations. You can use Chargeover as a standalone platform or integrate it with your existing CRM.
The platform also offers custom branding, so you can match your interface to your course, college, or university’s unique look and feel. Chargeover is an excellent all-around option for subscription management, billing, and payment processing, but it's not the cheapest option on the market, so this service is better suited to larger e-learning institutions, rather than freelance tutors.
SubscriptionFlow is a fully hosted subscription management platform. This makes it easy to get started and there's no need to worry about infrastructure. SubscriptionFlow has robust functionality, including social login, social communication, and more. It also integrates with a number of business tools, including MailChimp, making it even easier to communicate with your students, notifying them of course changes, special events, or schedule alterations.
SubscriptionFlow has a modern user interface and is easy to use, even if you may not have used a subscription management platform before. The service allows you to experiment with different pricing models too. For example, if you’re offering a single package of video tutorials along with access to a member’s forum, you may choose to go with a flat-fee model. However, if you’re offering on-call 1-2-1 tutelage, a usage-based or tiered pricing model may be a better option. With SubscriptionFlow, you can tailor your service to the needs of learners and offer them the flexibility to pay it their way.
Stripe is a robust payment processing solution that also offers subscription management, and it’s a tool trusted by industry giants such as Deliveroo, Booking.com, and MADE. Stripe is a good option if your primary focus is on payment processing, rather than gathering detailed metrics, and you can use Stripe with a number of business tools, including G Suite and Salesforce.
While it may not be the most fully-featured subscription management service on the market, we’ve included Stripe on this list thanks to its rock-solid reputation, as well as its ability to integrate with several third-party apps, including MailChimp, Salesforce, and Zapier. We're also huge fans of Stripe’s Identity tool, capable of verifying subscribers’ identities using ID documents from over 33 countries — ideal if you’re accepting payments from students across the globe.
Keep in mind that Stripe is primarily a payment processing solution that offers subscription management as a bonus feature, but if you’re simply looking for a reliable payment processor capable of handling a subscription-based payment model, Stripe could be the perfect tool for you.
Zuora is a fully-featured subscription management solution with a robust feature set. It has functionality for every aspect of subscription management, including billing, payment processing, and marketing. The platform aims to give its users the power to unlock long-term subscriber relationships, and it achieves this thanks to its comprehensive set of tools. Using Zuora Revenue is like having a one-stop shop for all of your revenue management needs.
In addition to automating revenue recognition, it also integrates with platforms like Stripe, Price Intelligently, and Apple Pay — a feature likely to be well received by younger students. Revenue optimization is a key feature of the Zuora Collect tool. Using AI, the process of recovering failed payments is simplified, meaning your students are less likely to miss modules or become locked out of their courses due to billing difficulties.
Subscription management software is an essential tool for any business that offers recurring billing, and as the educational industry increasingly expands online, the use-case for such tools is becoming ever more apparent. Picking the perfect subscription management service isn’t easy, but hopefully, we’ve made your selection process a little less complicated. Just remember — a good subscription management solution should render tasks such as managing recurring billing schedules, tracking revenue, or communicating with your students a breeze. Considering launching your own online teaching platform? Check out our guide on how to become an online teacher.
Guest Blogging Team
Published on: October 25, 2022
Last updated on: October 25, 2022