A decade ago or so, online education was unheard of, let alone the industry standing to become an integral part of education and skill acquisition now. Like many other industries, technological advancements brought changes to the education sector. Learners started opting for online education for convenience and the flexibility it offers. There are many online learning platforms today that make high-quality education content accessible. Coursera is one of the leading online course providers that enables learners to explore topics of interest and improve their skills. In this blog, we explore how Coursera business model and revenue model work,


Coursera, an online education provider founded in 2012, enables learners to access courses on a vast range of topics. The online learning platform even collaborates with prestigious universities worldwide, helping them earn degrees. It functions as a platform, enabling learners to access accredited degrees from organizations instead of the platform itself creating educational content. 

With headquarters in California, Coursera only partnered with schools like Stanford, Princeton, and the University of Pennsylvania initially to make some of their courses accessible online. It then went on to work with businesses and governments. Today, Coursera serves as a platform that offers over 7000 courses, with more than 300 universities and companies making their lessons. 

Being one of the largest online learning platforms, Coursera has reached 129 million users. 

Coursera Business Model

The robust platform of Coursera makes many courses available for learners while ensuring they get the best learning experience at affordable prices. Coursera also makes some courses accessible to its users free of cost. The free content helps attract learners wanting to upgrade their skills at a low cost. They then become paid members, eventually increasing the revenue generation for the platform. 

Customer Segments

Being a leading learning platform allowing students to access lessons, the Coursera business model has three stakeholders. Let us look into the three customer segments in detail. 

Learners: Students and professionals looking to improve their skills and expand their knowledge can access various courses on the platform. They can subscribe to Coursera Plus to get unlimited access to a range of lessons. 

At the last of 2021, Coursera recorded about 97 million learners using the platform. As of now, this number has gone over 129 million, with diverse user groups accessing educational content on Coursera to meet their learning goals. 

Employers: Businesses and companies partner with Coursera to help their resources upskill for them to remain competitive in the current industrial landscape. 

As of 2020, over 2000 organizations used the Coursera for Business service to train their employees. Now, the number has gone up to 3500. Organizations gain several benefits from the Coursera for Business service, such as lower training costs and increased productivity among professionals. 

Universities and Institutions: The third stakeholder group of the Coursera business model is educators who provide courses on the platform. With its advanced technology and tools, Coursera makes it easy for institutions and educators to create and publish high-quality content. 

Value Proposition

The Coursera business model offers a strong value proposition, driving the Coursera platform to success. 

Accessibility: A diverse course range is available on Coursera that learners can access at affordable prices. 

Flexibility: Coursera enables learners to learn at their own pace and schedule to go through courses at the time of their convenience. 

Accredited Content: Learners can access courses from well-recognized universities and add credibility to their skills. 

Global Reach: Coursera helps institutions reach an extensive audience on a global level by partnering with the platform. 

Technology Infrastructure: By collaborating with Coursera, universities, and institutions can deliver courses to their user base with the help of advanced technology and tools. 

Coursera Revenue Model

Coursera generates revenue through course purchases, enrollments, and subscription plans. In addition to this, Coursera also makes a substantial amount of money from organizations and universities. 

The revenue generated by Coursera saw a 59% increase in 2020 compared to the previous year’s $184.4 million. Similarly, Coursera’s revenue increased by 21% in 2023 compared to 2022, advancing to about $636 million. 

The Coursera revenue model brings in revenue in many ways. 

Course Enrollment Fee

Coursera offers a vast range of course content on the platform. Learners wanting to purchase courses to meet their learning goals do so by paying a certain amount. The course fee can be as low as $9.99 to $45,000, depending on the type of offering. 

Coursera Plus/ Subscription Fee

Coursera offers monthly and annual subscription services to users. By subscribing, learners can have unlimited access to over 7000 courses. The monthly plan comes at $59, and the annual at $399. 

Degree Programs

Learners can earn degrees through Coursera from prestigious universities partnering with the platform. Coursera provides bachelor’s, master’s, and also postgraduate diplomas. Coursera charges in the range of $9000- $25,000. 

Enterprise Fee

It is another of the income streams that the revenue model brings in. Businesses can partner with Coursera to upskill their employees. They can get the training and expand their skill set as the organization they work for requires. It generates a substantial amount of revenue through this. Businesses can select either of the two plans that provides. Depending on their needs, they can opt for the plan that gives unlimited access to courses, or the other one, which is an offering in addition to Teams and is a skill-based offering. 

Data shows that many Fortune 500 use Coursera to keep their employees relevant to the current industry needs.  

In Conclusion,

The flexible learning environment that Coursera offers enables learners to advance in their careers by upgrading their skills at their own pace. Several courses are available for free, and with Coursera Plus, learners can get unlimited access. Users can choose the plan that best suits their needs. It covers everything from attaining skills in a specific subject to getting degrees, making it one of the most preferred platforms in the online learning market. We hope examining the business and revenue models gave insights into how work. 

Partnering with an expert team committed to understanding your requirements and delivering the optimum solution will help you succeed in the online learning market. As your partner, we bring a lot to the table with our expertise and experience. 

With EduStar, you can build a thriving online educational community, providing learners and educators with a user-friendly platform to learn and educate.