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eLearning in the world: main markets and future trends

What is the value of the eLearning market in the world? What are the main drivers of growth and future prospects?

mercato-elearningThe global eLearning market exceeded $200 billion in 2019 and, according to the Global Market Insights report, will grow by more than 8% annually (CAGR) between 2020 and 2026.

In this article we will look in more detail at the current state of health of the eLearning industry worldwide and what trends are driving the major markets on a geographical basis.


eLearning market: global perspectives

In recent years, the advent of new technologies (such as artificial intelligence or cloud computing) and the spread of the Internet around the world have contributed significantly to the growth of eLearning. Statistics show that the sector's revenues have grown by over 900% since 2000 (Brandon Hall Group Research) and this trend shows no sign of slowing down. Today, the coronavirus pandemic has further accelerated the demand for eLearning solutions from users and companies around the world.

In particular, by 2026, the use of the virtual classroom is expected to grow by 11%, the synchronous and collaborative teaching mode that allows active participation of students, creating an environment similar to a physical classroom.

Main drivers of eLearning growth in the world

The growth of eLearning in the world follows different rhythms and trends based on the specific socio-economic characteristics of the reference area. Below are the main drivers of eLearning growth by geographic area.

North America and Europe

Asia and Latin America

  • Growth in higher education;
  • Growth in demand for online English courses
  • Increased corporate training programs.

Middle East and Africa

  • Increase in government programmes and initiatives;
  • Increased Internet penetration and mobile learning.

The eLearning market in the United States

The United States is the world leader in online education. The value of the U.S. eLearning market (including wages and expenses for external products and services) reached $83 billion in 2019. In the same year, only 9.7% of U.S. companies said they did not use online training systems.

Medium and large enterprises are the main target group for eLearning: 90% of them used an LMS in 2019, compared to 71% of small enterprises.

The eLearning market in Asia

Asia represents an extremely dynamic market for eLearning: online education in India alone is ready to grow by $14.33 billion over the period 2020-2024, advancing to a CAGR of 21% over the forecast period (Global Market Insights).

The Asian eLearning boom is in fact supported by many local governments that in recent years have passed laws that have accelerated the adoption of online education in higher education. Moreover, in a context such as Asia's lack of infrastructure, eLearning is an excellent opportunity to open the doors of education to an increasing number of students and workers.

The eLearning market in Europe

mercato-elearning-europaEurope is a very dynamic market for eLearning, especially for the presence of a high number of providers of distance learning solutions.

In 2019, Europe dominated over 35% of the eLearning market's revenue share and the European eLearning market is expected to grow by $24.23 billion over the period 2020-2024, progressing to a CAGR of 12% (Global Market Insights).

The implementation of 5G technology and the development of telecommunications infrastructure will facilitate the diffusion of online training.

According to statistics, the main drivers of eLearning growth in Europe over the next six years will be the advanced economies (UK, France and Germany), followed by Russia, Spain and Italy.

The eLearning market in Africa

Currently, the eLearning market in Africa is worth 792 million dollars, a fraction of the 200 billion worldwide. Here too, however, eLearning is a growth sector which, according to a report by Imarc Group, will reach $1.8 billion by 2024.

The market is driven by South Africa, which alone accounts for a quarter of the African eLearning market, followed by Morocco, Nigeria, Tunisia and Kenya. The sectors in which eLearning is most used are schools and universities.

From the technological point of view, there is a clear predominance of mobile learning which, alone or in combination with other educational approaches, is supporting and extending education and training in ways previously impossible, also thanks to the exponential spread of mobile communication in the African continent.

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