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On or around July 12, 2022, LearnDash changed their pricing. At the same time, they launched LearnDash Cloud, which is their own hosting service that includes the plugin. There’s been some confusion around the new pricing, as well as what happens to existing customers & their current subscriptions.
Let’s lay out the details of what we know, and what LearnDash has communicated to us.
Before we get into what LearnDash has communicated to us, let’s take a look at the legacy pricing (before July 2022) and the new LearnDash pricing (July 2022 & beyond).
Legacy Pricing (before July 2022)
- Basic: $159/yr. (1 site)
- Plus: $189/yr. (10 sites)
- Pro: $329/yr. (25 sites)
The main difference between these plans is the inclusion of ProPanel, which is LearnDash’s reporting tool. It’s only available in the Plus & Pro plans.
Current Pricing (July 2022 & beyond)
- 1 site: $199/yr. (previously $159 / +$40)
- 10 sites: $399/yr. (previously $189 / +$210)
- Unlimited sites: $799/yr. (previously 25 sites for $329 / +$470)
It is unclear if ProPanel is still included in any of these plans. The LearnDash support site stills says you need a PLUS or PRO plan to get access to ProPanel, but the plans aren’t called that anymore. And the pricing page doesn’t mention anything about ProPanel.
The new plans aren’t an exact match to the old plans, so it’s hard to compare apples to apples, but that should give you a good overview.
Initial Decision – April 18, 2022
On March 28th, 2022, Chris Lema (then GM of LearnDash) emailed customers to let us know that a price change was coming on April 18, 2022. In short, that didn’t happen, and a lot ended up changing. But for the sake of record keeping, here’s what Chris said would be happening on April 18th.
- Basic license would go from 1 to 5 sites, and include ProPanel
- Existing customers renewals would remain the same for 2022 & 2023 (no mention of 2024 & beyond)
- Plan names & offerings would change. Basic, Plus, and Pro would become Instructor, Agency, and Business
- Extended support & 7 days per week support would be offered on select plans
- Site licenses would go from 1, 10, and 25 to 5, 20, and 50
- Business license holders would get exclusive discounts with third-party LearnDash partners
Here’s an overview of the old plans vs. proposed new plans (and again, none of this ever happened):
Reasons for the Change + What’s Coming
In this email, Chris also gave reasons for the pricing change, along with new things that LearnDash was planning to release in the coming months.
- Customers were asking for more site licenses with their plans, and enhanced support
- Collaborating with Kadence to offer more starter templates
- Working with partners on custom-built integrations including deeper integration with FluentCRM, Bento, and tighter integration with the WisdmLabs Reporting plugin
- We have an integration with a new social/chat partner, along with a release of a non-Zoom collaborative video-based cohort solution
- We’ve hired more full-time developers to keep LearnDash running as smooth as possible
- We’re expanding our support team and continue to provide specialized training so that you receive top-tier support
In reality, it doesn’t seem like much (if any) of these things actually happened, which is a bit disappointing to say the least.
Official Pricing Change – July 12, 2022
On (or very close to) July 12, 2022, LearnDash changed their pricing. Most existing customers, if not all, didn’t receive official communication about the change. This obviously led to additional questions.
On July 13, in the LearnDash Facebook Group, Zachary Tirrell, the new GM of LearnDash, stated the following:
“We have committed to renewing all existing licenses at the old pricing through the end of 2023. After that, we’ll transition folks to new pricing tiers.”
In my opinion, this creates just as many questions as it does answers. What exactly happens when you “transition folks to new pricing tiers?” Does that happen automatically? Does the user have to opt-in? If you paid $329 for the highest LearnDash plan earlier in the year, do you automatically get charged $799 after 2023?
I don’t know if any official statement was ever made on exactly how this would work, but after several posts in the Facebook group, it became my understanding that your existing subscription price would be honored through December 31, 2023. Any subscription renewal that took place on or after January 1, 2024 would renew at the new/higher price. And the 3 old pricing tiers would convert one-to-one to the 3 new pricing tiers, and previous 25-site license owners would now have unlimited site licenses.
Legacy Prices Last Forever – Nov 21, 2022
On November 21, 2022, Zach Tirrell sent an email to existing customers with an update on pricing. I’ll include the entire email below so you can read it in its entirety. Essentially, as long as your subscription remains active, you will continue to be charged legacy pricing, and your price will never increase.
Here’s the email from Zach:
“We know it’s tough in the world right now. The last few years have seen unprecedented levels of change, with some of the most difficult economic situations in decades.
Earlier this year, we announced a pricing increase. As part of that increase, we said that existing customers would receive legacy pricing for one year.
After careful consideration of customer feedback, and the economic situation worldwide, we’ve decided to change that.
I’m pleased to announce that all existing customers will receive legacy pricing forever, provided that your subscription remains active.
We hope that you see continued success with your LearnDash website. You can rely on us to never spike your price as you remain an active subscriber.”
This is obviously good news, and I’m glad it was communicated via email to existing customers. However, it does come with a bit of an issue. What if you already cancelled your subscription because you thought your subscription was going to automatically increase in price (“transition folks to new pricing tiers”)?
One user did this, and was initially told by the LearnDash team that there was nothing they could do for him because he already cancelled his subscription. Zach Tirrell chimed in and said they would make it right. So if this happens to you, email [email protected] and ask them to give you back your old subscription price.
At the end of the day, it’s unfortunate that there was so much confusion & lack of communication around all the LearnDash pricing changes (and changes that never were). It definitely could have been handled more smoothly.
In the end, I think they got it right for existing customers.
As for the new pricing itself… that’s up for debate. Is $799/yr. a reasonable price for unlimited sites? Is $399/yr. fair for 10 sites? Should ProPanel be sold separately or included in all plans? I’ll let you form your own opinion on that.
The thing I’m most disappointed about is the things in Chris Lema’s March email that never seemed to happen. A lot was promised and almost none of it was delivered on. I also don’t think LearnDash’s support has gotten any better in the past 6 months.
With these new prices, I sure hope we start to see better support and more/improved integrations.
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