Moodle Pricing: Open Source Costs and Cloud Options

For a pricing comparison of popular vendors, check out our 2021 LMS Pricing Guide.

Moodle is a learning management solution built for schools, but it’s also used by companies for training programs.

moodle-pricing-open-source-costs-and-cloud-options

How Much is Moodle?

Moodle is an open source solution, which means organizations are free to download it. Pricing plans are also available for additional services and features, as well as cloud hosting.

Moodle for Free—While Moodle is free to download, hosting the solution comes with additional expenses separate from the product itself. These costs can quickly add up and are tough to estimate from the start.

Schools or businesses that decide to use Moodle for free can add up to 50 users. Other features that come for free include:

  • A dedicated mobile application
  • 200 MB of storage
  • Unlimited activities
  • Personalized branding
  • Video and screen sharing
  • Immediate product upgrades

The costs of implementing and hosting the solution on your own include:

  • The hardware costs of a server (an estimated $4,000 up front cost)
  • The pay for IT employees, including their overtime hours for the project and daily hours for maintaining a server
  • Any implementation, training or other ongoing services required through a third-party consultant or other contracted specialists
Compare Moodle Pricing vs Competitors: Download our free LMS Comparison Guide with pricing info for more than 40 top vendors – Download Here

MoodleCloud – MoodleCloud has a 45-day free trial that includes 1,000 users and 5 GB of storage. Then, there are five pricing tiers that include all the features of Moodle, such as unlimited courses and activities, a mobile app, a personalized site name, session recording and web conferencing with BigBlueButton. Note that the pricing represents U.S. currency:

  • Starter: $120 per year for 50 users and 250 MB of storage
  • Mini: $220 per year for 100 users and 500 MB of storage
  • Small: $390 per year for 200 users and 1 GB of storage
  • Medium: $870 per year for 500 users and 2.5 GB of storage
  • Large: $1,540 per year for 1,000 users and 5 GB of storage

Organizations with over 1,000 users should contact a Moodle Partner for a quote.

How to Reduce the Costs

Using an open source solution doesn’t always mean you’re choosing the least expensive option.

When an organization first downloads Moodle, an in-house IT team must take charge. This IT team will use materials from Moodle’s website to get the solution running. Your employees can request consultation from Moodle, but will likely be charged for any services.

Depending on the tech environment of the business, IT teams will either want to host Moodle on an existing on-premise server or a cloud server. Moodle’s pricing plan includes the costs of cloud storage, but businesses aren’t limited to cloud hosting with Moodle and can compare prices with third-party cloud hosting services as well.

The costs of these options differ. Some businesses may not have an existing server to use, so the upfront cost is much higher. Instead, Moodle’s premium accounts host the data for you in the cloud. This adds to the monthly charge, but also decreases the costs of buying and maintaining a server.

What you need to know: If your business has an IT team to take charge, Moodle open source could be the least expensive option. Your team will decide if hosting the solution on-premise is worthwhile. Otherwise, Moodle’s cloud services are convenient for those who choose premium accounts, and businesses can seek third-party cloud hosting services to compare prices as well.

Alternative solutions could be cheaper than Moodle with similar features that still satisfy your needs.

Edmodo also offers a free solution with unlimited data storage and users, and it specializes in K-12 learning and higher education.

Edsby is another LMS that focuses on schools. It costs $5/user/year, but is free for parent accounts. The base price doesn’t include all features of Edsby, and the price per user rises as more features are added.

Bottom Line

Open source solutions allow businesses to download them for free, but they also require in-house specialists and the funds to maintain company data on a server.

MoodleCloud’s pricing plans are available to host client data in the cloud. Clients are also able to increase the amount of data storage and the number of users with each offering.

If you need a starting point to learn about other LMS solutions, check out The Definitive Guide to Learning Management Systems. It discusses all the features and benefits of LMS software, and has a buyer’s guide for identifying the right fit for your school.

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