Udemy’s January Sale ran from December 31 to January 10, 2020.   Using Teachinguide’s database we’ve tallied up the results. You’ll recall we did a similar analysis for Udemy’s 2019 Cyber Week sale.  We wanted to do a little comparison between these two big Udemy sales and see what the similarities and differences are.

Udemy January Sale Enrollments vs. Black Friday Enrollments

As the chart below shows, while Black Friday saw the highest single day of enrollments, overall the January Sale (10 days) saw a larger enrollment than Black Friday.  The January Sale resulted in 2.63 million enrollments while Black Friday saw 470,000 enrollments.  Even on a weekly comparison basis, the week of the January sale still produced more enrollments than Cyber week.

Udemy January Sale vs. Black Friday

Top Selling Categories for Udemy’s January Sale

So then, what courses were the millions of January sale shoppers buying?

Here’s a summary table of some course categories that saw huge increases in enrollments over the average weekly enrollments.

Course Category Average weekly enrollment January Sale week enrollment % increase over average weekly enrollment
Data Science 28,500 139,888 390%
IT Certification 51,170 112,960 122%
Web Development 49,117 93,960 91%
Data and Analytics 21,875 57,499 163%
Finance 12,165 38,286 217%
Digital Marketing 11,767 41,980 259%
Home Business 2,818 13,000 364%
Graphic Design 12, 962 42, 980 230%
User Experience 6,480 14,240 118%
Language 7,500 38,000 406%
Personal Transformation 9,750 30,250 208%
Photography Fundamentals 4,550 23,300 412%

It’s interesting to note that during Cyber Week 2019, Finance was one of the least enrolled categories.  Perhaps, after all, that end of year shopping and spending folks are wanting to learn to better manage their budget and finances!  More likely it’s probably time to prepare for spring interview season on Wall Street – courses in financial analysis saw most of the growth.

Languages were another surprise category. This category also did not see a huge increase over Cyber week but enrollment in language courses quadrupled over the average in January. One course contributing to the spike in enrollments in the language category was this Express IELTS Preparation Formula course.

We recently wrote about popular personal development course topics. These topics, which include courses on career development, creativity, meditation and communication, fall mainly under the Personal Transformation category, which saw a 208% increase in enrollments.

The Home Business category growth was driven by courses about selling on Amazon, particularly Sandor Kiss’s Amazon FBA: Complete Guide To Start Your Own Home Business.

Good ole photography is back in demand with over 400% growth. Digital photography courses did particularly well.  The traditional Photography Masterclass by Phil Ebiner and Video School Online also continues to see strong enrollment year after year.

Most Popular Course Topics in Udemy’s January Sale

Digging one level down from categories, it’s always interesting to see more specifically which topics are in demand. Below is a list of the most popular topics during the January Sale and the number of enrollments that occurred. No surprise that Python still rules.

Python – 111,453

Excel – 39,170

AWS Certification – 38, 145

Data Analysis – 34, 515

Java – 33, 436

Digital Marketing  – 33, 298

Ethical Hacking – 29, 086

Online Course Creation – 28, 655

Photography – 23,427

Machine Learning – 19, 287

Losing Course Topics

If we observe from our database the thousands of course topics on Udemy, we see that there a lot of losing topics. Topics that saw no enrollments during the January Sale include such topics as Blood circulation, Digestion, Cartography, AP Calculus, Fireworks Safety, Indoor Cycling and Greeting Cards.

However, it’s interesting to note that dozens of course topics that typically see small volumes in an average week still got a nice boost during the January sale. Some examples include Sustainable Architecture, Jewelry Design, Cat Behavior, Lucid Dreaming, Soap Making, CPA Marketing and Makeup Artistry.

It just goes to show you that almost any course creator no matter how niche stands to benefit by listing their course on Udemy in time for the January Sale.

If you’d like to get more data like this to inform your online course creation decisions, why not try our free trial and see what Teachinguide’s database can do for you?


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