2020 Udemy platform improvements

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2020 Udemy platform improvements

Community Manager
Community Manager

Despite all the challenges of this year, incredible instructors like you came together to help new students everywhere succeed through online learning. Our team has been hard at work to ensure we support the entire community and keep the Udemy platform up and running during record-setting traffic and enrollment spikes. 


To keep you informed, we wanted to take a moment to review some of the new features, tools, and products developed in 2020.


Student learning experience

A flexible, practical experience is essential to helping students commit to and achieve their learning goals. This year, we introduced: 


  • Learning reminders to increase motivation and productivity.
  • Notes for more effective and immersive learning.
  • Dark mode to support early birds and night owls by reducing eye strain.
  • Coding exercises to give data science and development students hands-on practice in nine new languages, libraries, and frameworks.


Most notably, we launched the Free Resource Center to provide a selection of highly rated, free courses to help people anywhere in the world navigate the new challenges they’re facing.


Pricing, payments, and partnerships

As Udemy continues to grow globally, we've enhanced the financial systems that underpin your business. To support you in building content and your audience, we've improved our approach on pricing, taxes, refunds, and more.


Here are some of our key revenue initiatives this year:


  • Differentiated free course experience – Free content helps students discover new topics, instructors, and explore online learning. However, our new differentiated experience helps to distinguish the added value of a longer, interactive paid course.
  • Price tests and enhancements – We’ve rolled out a differentiated pricing model for all global markets and have begun tests to optimize list prices.
  • Refund system revamp – To set student expectations better, identify abusive behavior, and protect you and your content, we’ve built a new refund platform and implemented automatic refund thresholds.
  • Tax withholding – We’ve partnered with Comply Exchange to collect tax forms directly on Udemy and apply appropriate tax withholding in order to help instructors stay compliant with U.S. tax laws.
  • Student sales tax – To maintain global tax compliance across 50+ countries, we’ve updated our tax collection practices, including sales, GST, VAT, and more.


Staying up and running

Our site reliability team is more dedicated than ever to ensuring Udemy remains the go-to place to learn from anywhere, in any place in the world. When we began experiencing record-breaking traffic and enrollments, our daily support requests from students and instructors more than doubled. Thank you for your patience as we worked to keep the platform steady and reliable.


While we’re incredibly proud of all of the enhancements we’ve made in 2020, we’re not done yet. With another quarter left in the year, we’ll be running experiments on taxonomy, search, piracy, and more. Stay tuned for additional updates as we continue to build a better experience for you and your students.