How to design web-style learning experiences [video]

As beautiful, engaging websites become the norm, your learners are becoming used to modern scrolling online experiences. Is your elearning keeping up? We go behind the scenes of a web-inspired piece of elearning in this ‘Designer’s Cut’ video to give you some tips and design ideas.


Traditional elearning is based on a jazzed-up slide show format: a contained rectangular space with multimedia and interactive elements. It can be very effective when done right, but it can also look dated compared to the design of the websites and apps we use every day. There is another way!

Taking inspiration from web design, you can turn your elearning content into beautiful scrolling pages without compromising on interactivity.

3 tips to get started with web-style learning design

1. Know when to use it

Scrolling pages are perfect for content that you’re comfortable with learners browsing at their own pace. Our preboarding example is a perfect example of this; the learning isn’t mandatory, and learners are encouraged to scan and find the information they need.

We also see our customers using scrolling pages to create on-the-job product knowledge sheets and process guides. The web-style format allows learners to see the big picture all on one page and easily scroll between process steps without having to leave a page.

2. Get the navigation right

A common concern with web-style pages is that the navigation experience will be a departure for those who are used to slide-based elearning. To make sure your learners can easily find their way around, consider using a page progress menu. Your learners will be able to:

  • See all the content on the page at a glance
  • Keep track of what they started, completed, and still need to start
  • Click each title to jump straight to that section on a page

We also recommend a clear instruction and close button at the end of the page to mark the end of the experience.

website navigation design

3. Use visuals to your advantage

Stacking your content vertically on one page doesn’t mean that it all has to look the same. By breaking your page up into sections that make use of different background colors, you can indicate to learners when you’re moving from one learning point to the next.

We’ve also seen color-coded backgrounds used effectively to indicate:

  • Presentation content vs. content that requires interaction from the learner
  • Content that belongs to different categories (e.g., “features and benefits” vs. “selling skills” in a product knowledge sheet)

elucidat website design

Final thoughts

Elearning is most effective when it fits seamlessly into learners’ lifestyles and the time they have available. Taking lessons from web design and app design can help us create modern online experiences that are appealing to our learners.

Check out our preboarding example for yourself here, or browse more examples of modern elearning.