In the last twenty years, technology has impacted almost every part of people’s lives. Our ways of learning are no exception. What was unimaginable a few generations back now happened to be our reality. E-learning or eLearning became a new method of learning for millions of people around the world. 

The Covid-19 pandemic only speeded up the process and many employers, employees, as well as students, started learning remotely from the comfort of their own homes.  

But what can you learn and how can your business benefit from the eLearning industry numbers?  

What Is E-Learning? 

E-learning or eLearning is a process of learning or training electronically through an online course, online educational videos, eLearning tools or other online programs for the education industry, as a part of corporate training, or for self-paced learning at home. 

Since the global eLearning market numbers changed immensely in the last few years due to the pandemic, we’ve taken the time to look at the eLearning industry figures and their impact on business, schooling and self-improvement.¬†

Here are the eLearning statistics that you can use to get new ideas on improving your business operations and employee satisfaction. 

eLearning statistics changed in the years of the pandemic

Global E-Learning Market Statistics

  • The global eLearning industry is projected to surpass 243 billion U.S. dollars at a 5.08% CAGR, according to Statista.¬†
  • For every dollar spent on eLearning, companies make back $30 in productivity, according to eLearn2grow statistics.
  • The fastest-growing eLearning industry market is the Asia Pacific, with eLearning revenues expected to grow at an annual rate of 20%, according to the same source.¬†
  • Since 2000, the digital learning industry has grown by 900%, according to KPMG.¬†

  • The largest section of the global eLearning industry is located in the US and Europe (70%), according to Thrive My Way statistics.¬†
  • Worldwide, mobile learning could reach $80.1 billion by 2027, according to the same source.¬†
  • Mobile learning (m-learning) is one of the fastest growing markets in the e-learning domain, with an annual growth of 23%, according to Technavio post.¬†
  • Between the years 2020 to 2025, this market will experience a 200% increase, according to Guru99 Online Learning Statistics.¬†
  • 28% of companies conduct their compliance training through online training, according to the same source.¬†

  • At least 60% of internet users have indulged in eLearning courses. This is because they can comfortably do it at the comfort of their time and place, according to the same source.¬†
  • $20.8B was the total investment raised by various EdTech ventures in 2021.¬†

Numbers Before, During, and After the Height of the Pandemic  

The pandemic changed our old habits. Except for making us stay at home more, it connected us more than ever through the internet.  

Moreover, it turned traditional learning into distance learning. Find out how the online learning industry looked before, during and after the height of the pandemic and how many people used eLearning courses then. 

  • In 2019, 85% of district administrators said that using digital learning tools was a high priority, according to the US Department of Education report.¬†
  • The demand for online learning courses rose by as much as 400% during the height of the pandemic in 2020, according to Global Market Insights.¬†
  • The eLearning market size was estimated at 250 billion in 2020, according to the same source.¬†
  • 65% of households with children report the use of online learning during the pandemic in the US, according to USA Facts.¬†
  • During the pandemic, only 20% of countries had digital learning resources in teaching in Europe, according to article.¬†
  • The main issues that influenced and impacted online EFL learning during the COVID-19 pandemic were related to technical, academic, and communication challenges, according to the Arab World English Journal study.¬†
  • In a study of a US dental school, most online courses were well accepted by the students, and 80% of them wanted to continue with some online instruction post pandemic, according to a BMC Medical Education study.¬†
  • During the height of COVID-19 pandemic, the students agreed that ‚Äúthe introduction of e-learning is difficult and that the low-quality of internet services is the biggest obstacle to its application,‚ÄĚ according to The COVID-19 pandemic and E-learning study.¬†
  • 97% of college students have switched to eLearning as a result of COVID-19, according to Thrive My Way statistics.¬†
  • 33% of higher education institutions say they will continue to offer their course partly or fully online post-pandemic, according to the same source.¬†
Corporate eLearning is more widespread than ever

E-Learning and Work 

The idea of lifelong education and constant knowledge improvement has long been a norm in many professions.  

However, switching from physical education centers and offices to distance learning and online courses started a real revolution in the business field. Many companies implemented eLearning courses for employee training. Here’s what the measurable impact of that revolution looks like.¬†

  • E-learning boosts retention rates by 25% to 60%, compared to retention rates of 8% to 10% with traditional training, according to Forbes.¬†
  • Corporations can save anywhere from 50-70% of their money to replace an instructor with e-learning methods, according to Skillscouter statistics.¬†
  • Elearning industry is thriving and keeps getting bigger., an e-learning platform received $103 million USD in venture funding in 2013, according to the same source.¬†
  • 2 years after acquired their funding, they were purchased by LinkedIn for \$1.5 billion USD in 2015. It is now called LinkedIn Learning, according to the same source.¬†
  • IBM saved approximately $200 million after switching to e-learning, according to Tech Jury statistics.¬†
  • E-learning has led to an increase in income for 42% of US organizations, according to the same source.¬†
  • A survey of 2,500 companies found that those with ‚Äúcomprehensive training programs‚ÄĚ have 218% higher revenue per employee and 24% higher profit margins, according to the same source.¬†
  • In 2020, 90% of companies used eLearning courses as a training tool, according to eLearning Learning statistics.¬†
  • 98% of Small Businesses Use Video-Based Training Programs, according to the same source.¬†
  • Employees’ lack of time to dedicate towards learning is the #1 challenge facing talent development today, according to a Twitter post.¬†
Many schools depend on eLearning

Online Learning and Educational Institutions 

E-learning and the education system go hand in hand. Up until a decade ago, school kids and students rarely used online education.  

But the fast technological development and other circumstances like the pandemic moved the entire school system online. This shift was extreme in the last two years, with both students and teachers adjusting to the new normal and embracing the benefits of online education outside of educational institutions. 

  • 44% of US institutions have adapted fully to online learning platforms and tools, and online education has become their primary mode of learning, according to Thrive My Way statistics.¬†
  • 71% of professors in educational institutions are concerned about how to increase engagement in online classes, according to the same source.¬†
  • Students retain 25-60% more material when learning online compared to only 8-10% in a classroom, according to Shift statistics.¬†
  • 81% of students say online classes have helped them improve their grades, according to Mark in Style statistics.¬†
  • 43% of students use online learning platforms as helping tools while they‚Äôre doing their homework, according to the same source.¬†
  • Elearning helps students retain five times more knowledge for every hour of learning, according to the same source.¬†
  • Online student enrollment in the U.S has increased for 14 years in a row, while overall college enrollment in the U.S has been declining over the last 10 years, according to Taylor & Francis post.¬†
  • 64% of American middle school students use digital learning tools on a daily basis, according to Statista.¬†
  • The smallest group of students using digital learning tools in America are elementary students, with only 45% of them doing so, according to the same source.¬†
  • Elearning and eLearning courses can cut energy consumption by 90%, according to eLearning industry statistics.¬†

Online Course Statistics  

One type of eLearning tools is an online course. These days you can find thousands of different courses online and they all have one purpose: to educate the learner/trainee/student on a specific subject. 

Some of the best and biggest online learning platforms are Thinkific, Teachable, Podia, LearnDash, LearnWorlds, Kajabi, Skillshare, Academy of Mine, Udemy, Coursera, and LinkedIn Learning. 

Many people grabbed online learning opportunities on these platforms long ago and use digital learning tools to this day; but what do the exact numbers look like? 

  • 67% of students use mobile devices to finish online course tasks, according to Self Starters article.¬†
  • Almost 80% of online course learners have a bachelor’s degree or higher, according to the same source.¬†
  • 22 of the top 25 U.S universities now offer online courses for free, according to the same source.¬†
  • The MOOC (Massive Online Open Course) market is expected to be worth $21.1 billion by 2025 compared to $5.16 billion in 2019, with an annual growth rate of 29% in this period, according to Sell Courses Online’s Online Learning Statistics.¬†
  • Udemy for Business, a solution for workplace learning, saw an 80% increase in consumption of course content during March 2020, according to the same source.¬†
  • The United States and Canada witnessed a combined growth rate of 691% in online course creation by individual creators due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the same source.¬†

Interesting eLearning Statistics  

Last, let’s look at some of the fascinating eLearning statistics to show you how much of an impact it has on people, schools, and businesses. 

  • Polish medical students said that the ‚Äúmain advantages of online learning were the ability to stay at home (69%), continuous access to online materials (69%), learning at your own pace (64%), and comfortable surroundings (54%)‚ÄĚ, according to a research article titled Students‚Äô perception of online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.¬†
  • For every dollar spent on e-learning methods, companies are said to make back around $30 in higher productivity, Skillscouter statistics.¬†
  • When employers spend close to $1,500 per employer annually on training, data reveals that their profit margins increase by around 25%, according to the same source.¬†
  • Up to 40% of Fortune 500 companies use eLearning, according to Mark in Style statistics.¬†
  • The search volume of the keyword ‚Äėfree online learning‚Äô grew by 367.53% in the UK due to the pandemic, according to Statista.¬†
  • Udemy, one of the most popular learning platforms, has more than 20,000 experts, with about 12 million students taking online courses, according to Guru99 Online Learning Statistics.¬†
  • Teachable, another platform, has over 7500 experts, and they offer more than 20,000 online courses. They have around 3 million students, according to the same source.¬†
  • The eLearning market has a growth rate of 17.3% in the Asia-Pacific region while the average global growth rate stands at 7.6%, according to Docebo findings.¬†
  • Asia is followed by Eastern Europe at 16.9%, Africa at 15.2%, and Latin America at 14.6%, according to the same source.¬†
  • Savings for online courses ranged from $12 to $66 per credit hour, a difference of from 3% to 50% of the average credit hour costs, according to a BCG article.¬†


The eLearning industry not only moved classroom learning and corporate training into the mainstream but made online learning tools one of the main educational resources and employee training methods of today. 

Digital learning changed the corporate training landscape and the education sector for the better.  

We hope that these online learning statistics help you to get new ideas for improving your own business and enhancing employee engagement with distance learning. 

Photo Credit: Unsplash

Salman Aslam
Salman Aslam is the Managing Director at Omnicore, a leading Healthcare Digital Advertising & Marketing Agency helping clients across the globe. You can follow him on Twitter for tweets and rants about the latest news, tips, and advice on digital marketing.