Teaching has been given the status of ‘the noblest profession’ as it helps people to pass on their knowledge, thereby creating many more efficient people in various fields. Today, teaching is not just restricted to classrooms and schools. Various people are using the internet to impart their knowledge through platforms like Kajabi, WordPress, Teachable, etc.
WordPress has been in the market since its inception in 2003. And in spite of the fact that WordPress is a giant jigsaw puzzle, people wait for new plugins so that they can continue their work on WordPress. By launching Sensei, WooCommerce has fulfilled the wish of millions of people who want to teach online with WordPress. So let’s begin the in-depth Sensei Review to get more knowledge of it.
Sensei Review: In A Nutshell
Sensei is a product launched by Automattic- the parent company of WordPress, WooCommerce, Jetpack, etc. Needless to say, it integrates with almost every theme I have tried. Moreover, it doesn’t hinder or overpower the features provided by other plugins.
WooThemes has run Sensei through plenty of tests ensuring that it gives a smooth performance during excess load, extendibility, backend usability, and core stability.
If you are wondering whether you should get the Sensei plugin to sell online courses, you have come to the right place. I’ll give you a step by step guide through all the features of Sensei, at the end of which you can decide whether Sensei is worth your money or not!
Below mentioned are some of the amazing features that are being provided by this learning management system- Sensei-
Works with every theme!
Sensei seamlessly integrates with every WordPress theme while sticking to its role as a plugin. Although, it is exceptionally compatible with themes by Woothemes. As opposed to most plugins, Sensei works alongside your preferred theme instead of taking over. It works particularly well with the ‘Definition theme’ of WordPress.
Courses and Lessons
With Sensei, you are going to work more with lessons than with courses. That is why ‘Lessons’ is the dominant menu option. This tends to create confusion. Remember, ‘Lessons are under Courses’.
With Sensei, you can publicly advertise your videos by adding a YouTube or a Vimeo video in the ‘Custom Field’. But the ‘Lesson Videos’ will be private.
Moreover, you can also feature your courses. This means you can launch particular courses which will only be available for a short while.
You can add pre-requisites for both courses and lessons. This will allow your users to choose their courses wisely and let you create a course that will sell the most. Editing in Sensei is the same as the standard editing methods in WordPress, so that’s another plus!
Finally, what makes Sensei unique, is that you have an option to enter the length and complexity of the lessons. So, your students can choose to go for an easier lesson first and then move to the harder lesson. They can also take the lessons as per their convenience and mental capacity at the time.
Sensei also gives you the option to ‘duplicate’ lessons and courses. This saves you the time and energy to create similar courses from scratch.
Create great quizzes
Sensei allows you to create courses with great content embedded with videos. Moreover, it allows you to create quizzes to mark their progress level. You can set a passing mark in which your students are mandatory to score to progress to the next level of their course.
Sensei lets you get creative with your quizzing methods. You don’t need to stick to the standard MCQ questioning system with Sensei. You can take True or False, Fill in the Gap, One line answers, and even Multiple lines answer questions. Moreover, you can also ask your students to upload videos or files for assessment. With Sensei, assess your students thoroughly through both objective and subjective type questions.
That is not all, you can assign your questions as per the level at which the student is. All you need to do is assign grades to the questions and Sensei will take care of the rest. Plus, questions can be presented in random order to prevent cheating.
Sensei needs another extension for handing out certificates. This plugin is currently free. Awarding certificates can be controlled so that your students get the certificate only after passing the course. Although you can’t manually send certificates, they are always available in the My Courses area of the users’ page.
Built-in Grading System
Sensei automatically grades quizzes, allowing you to focus on building your next lesson and creating new course content. Although, you can turn off this option and switch to manual grading whenever required.
It’s analyzing system gives you important information about all your students, content, and grades.
Sensei is easy to navigate for both you and your students. The signing up process is extremely easy and every user has an account dashboard. This dashboard helps your users to browse through all their courses as well as to check their progress. Plus it’s easy for you to check their progress and course statistics.
Built-in Language Localization System
With a built-in language localization system and WordPress’ Oembed function for embed codes, you can teach your course in multiple languages and expand your reach! You can install Sensei in our language for ease of operation and communication.
Creating courses with Sensei is just like creating posts or blogs in WordPress. You need no extra tools. Moreover, you don’t need to wrack your brain trying to figure out how it works. Simply install it and create your first course.
This is a boon especially for those who aren’t familiar with WordPress or are new to selling digital courses.
Sensei has an extraordinarily creative look on the front end which suits almost all kinds of learners and teachers, so you won’t need any new themes. If you still wish to customize, use Sensei’s templating system and choose a template of your choice.
Takes care of your Security
Sensei knows how important it is to know the identity of your learners for security purposes. It passes your users through a two-step verification process through the plugin ‘Duo Two Factor Authentication’. It allows your users to verify through mobile phone and security code along with, them entering their password every time they log in.
You can follow these steps and install Sensei within minutes.
- Login to your WordPress admin panel. Go to the ‘admin panel’. Click on Plugins and Add New.
- Enter Sensei LMS in the search feed and then click on Install now.
- Next click on Activate
- You can sign up for Sensei’s mailing list on the pop-up that appears if you wish to.
- Click on Install Sensei LMS Pages to complete the installation. This will create two new pages on your website.
- ‘Enable Usage Tracking’ will appear on your screen. If you click on Yes, it allows WooCommerce to track your usage. It is a way of giving feedback to the company, allowing them to make updates to the software.
Fits like a glove with WooCommerce
Built by the same company, integrating WooCommerce and Sensei is a cakewalk. Using the WooCommerce Paid Extension, you can not just teach but also easily earn through your courses. Create your course using Sensei and get paid for them using WooCommerce. It allows you to sell courses as both subscriptions and memberships. To know more about how WooCommerce and Sensei work together, I have a separate section below to walk you through it. Keep scrolling!
Sensei Pricing | How Much Does Sensei Cost?
Sensei costs $129 for a single site, while the price for 5 sites is $179. 25 licensed sites, will cost you up to $279. Sensei has a decent costing range for a plugin. Neither cheap nor too expensive, Sensei is fairly priced and is worth every penny of it.
You will get a Free Trial Period
Sensei offers you a 30-day trial period to get familiar with the app. With the free trial you will be getting an extension for Sensei LMS Plugin. If it agrees with you only then do you need to pay for it. No matter what technical or sales query you have, contact the company and their impeccable customer service is there to attend to all your needs. The company promises you a hassle-free refund of your money if the product does not agree with you. Plus, they make it a point to work on your feedback and improve Sensei for your ease. To refund your money:
- Go to Woocommerce.com. Click on Accounts and then go to Orders.
- Select the order number of the product you want to refund.
- Then click on the ellipses icon present next to the total order column.
- On clicking it, you’ll get a prompt to Request a Refund.
- It is to be noted that if the ellipses icon isn’t displayed on the screen, it means your 30-day trial period has come to an end.
Sensei provides Strong Support Team
They have support teams all across the world, to cater to your each and every need. The official page of WooCommerce has a list of documents to guide you through set-up, installation, selling products, shipping, analytics, payment options, and much more. They also guide you on how to expand your website through WooCommerce extensions.
Apart from this, Woocommerce has a support team operating through WordPress, where the answers to all your questions are provided in-depth. Moreover, you can contact their Customer Care Service any time you want.
Sensei- An Efficient tool By WooCommerce-
Sensei is built by WooCommerce and the company promises to provide timely and efficient support. They constantly run beta tests to learn how well their customers are adapting to the plugin. They update Sensei as and when required, to fix glitches that might occur. Plus, the seamless integration of Sensei, causes no harm to your website during its update.
Sensei believes in improving. One of the weakest points it had earlier was questioning methods and with their latest update, Sensei has brought a wide array of quizzing methods to the table.
The company plans to extend Sensei through cost-effective extensions so that you can add to and innovate your courses with nothing to stop you. Currently, there are six free extensions provided by Sensei:
- Sensei Certificates: it allows you to award certificates to your students after course completion
- Sensei Media Attachments: it lets you attach PDFs and videos
- Sensei Course Progress: it enables your students to track their progress
- Sensei Course Participants: make things exciting by displaying avatars of students enrolled in your course. This extension also allows you to know the total count of students.
- Sensei Share Your Grade: this enables your students to share their grade via social media
- BuddyPress for Sensei: this allows you to connect your LMS to BuddyPress for a more social learning experience
Another plugin that you can install to enhance your course content is ‘Sensei Content Drip’. This allows you to choose when your students can access particular content. This helps you engage your users by awarding them fresher content as they complete previous lessons.
What is ‘WooCommerce Paid Courses’?
Sensei LMS’ latest update comes integrated with WooCommerce Paid Courses. This paid extension helps you merge the courses you created with WooCommerce. If you wish to earn through your courses, WooCommerce Paid Courses is one of the best choices for you. It has the following advantages:
- It helps you earn passive income: By selling your courses over and over again, you can earn a lot by putting in minimal effort
- It restricts course content: This allows your courses to be accessed by only those members who have paid for it
- Allows you to offer a free trial: WooCommerce Paid Courses allows you to offer free trials for a particular time period to all your users. This helps you attract more customers, thereby boosting your business.
- Allows you to accept recurring payments: Through this feature, you can charge the users for continued access to your courses.
How to Sell with WooCommerce?
Installing WooCommerce Paid Extension automatically enables you to link courses to WooCommerce products. Here is a step by step guide on how to do so:
- Go to Products, then click on Add New
- Add product details like title and description
- A Product data meta box appears below the editor, there click on ‘Virtual’ checkout
- Add some more descriptions of the product. This information will be displayed on the postcard.
- Click on ‘Save Draft’ or ‘Publish’ the product
- Repeat these steps while adding more products
It is important that you associate the product with the courses of your choice. To do so:
- Go to Courses and then go to ‘Add New Courses’. Then, click on the course you would like to attach to the product
- Next, click on the Sensei LMS icon on the top right corner. This will open the sidebar.
- Select the products which you want to link to the course
- Click on ‘Update’ to save
Areas Needed Improvement for Sensei
If you are not a developer or if you don’t want to use Woothemes, using Sensei might get tricky. Sensei doesn’t function well with themes apart from Woothemes.
Apart from that, Sensei comes with a set of drawbacks. It doesn’t have any option to add or remove learners. Plus, you can’t bulk import important users nor can you select current users unless you use a WooCommerce theme. It is as if Sensei only works with WooCommerce and Woothemes.
My Honest Say-Sensei Review-Should you Buy It?
Sensei is a Best LMS plugin introduced by WordPress to create and sell courses. Although there are various new apps and platforms exclusively built to sell online courses, those who are dedicated to WordPress, Sensei is a great plugin for you. It works exclusively with WooCommerce and WooThemes. It is user-friendly, engaging, and helps you teach creatively and innovatively. Comparing to its competitors, Sensei still lags and can do a lot better.
Moreover, plugins tend to complicate things and require a lot of coding. So, I’d recommend you to use a platform that doesn’t require excessive plugins or extensions.
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👉How do I switch upgrade from Sensei LMS to Sensei WooCommerce Paid Plugin?
If you already had an active Sensei license before their update in May 2019, it’ll automatically be converted into a WooCommerce Paid license. Older versions of Sensei will need an update. You can do that through the following steps: •Go to WooCommerce>Extensions>WooCommerce.com subscriptions •Make sure your website is connected to WooCommerce.com •Click on Update •Click on the Toggle switch to activate it.
👉What are the requirements for using Sensei LMS?
You will need: •WordPress 4.1+ •PHP 5.6+
👉What data does Sensei LMS log?
It has been frequently asked whether it is safe to share your data with Sensei. The company claims that they log only the non-sensitive data like storing the admin email, site URLs, list of the activated plugins and their uses, WordPress version, PHP version, etc. It is safe and would help them make Sensei better for you.
Conclusion- Sensei Review 2021– Is it the Best Learning Management System
Sensei- a learning management system for WordPress, has brought a lot to the table with their latest update. But there is still a long way to go. Being a product of Automations, Sensei integrates seamlessly with WooThemes and other WooCommerce related products.
In this Sensei Review, we have learned that it is easy to use and functions just like other WordPress sites. It helps you create engaging quizzes which thoroughly assess all your students. It is cost-effective and provides what you pay for. Although, there are places where Sensei can improve to become the ideal LMS plugin for WordPress.