Our clients often ask “How do I make my learners want to come back to our platform?”.  They can ‘force’ the learners to logon for compliance training, but ideally, they’d like learners to ‘want’ to go to the learning platform of their own accord. In our experience, there are various factors that increase employee engagement. Organised content is one of them.

The best method for organising content depends on your approach to giving access to your material: 


Self-enrollment is the method whereby users can choose to enrol themselves into a course and/or learning plan.


Auto-assignment is the method whereby users get assigned a course and/or learning plan based on predefined criteria, such as their role or geographic location.

In Docebo, there are three ways to organise content:

  1. Channels
  2. Catalogues
  3. Categories

Let’s cover each of them in more depth:


Generally, channels are aligned more to the social side of the platform, referred to as Discover, Coach & Share on Docebo. You can use channels for formal content, however, more traditionally it’s used for organising the informal side of the platform.

Channels are often based on topics such as Marketing, Sales, and Service, but can vary depending on specific use cases. Each channel can be set up to show content to all users or a specific subset of users.


Typically speaking, categories can be used to organise formal content for your admins. You might have hundreds of courses on your platform, but the usage of categories allows you to create organisation by topics, roles, or whatever makes sense for your use case. Categories can also be nested to create hierarchical relationships within categories. 

If you have three, four or 500 courses, you can easily find courses to update materials, process enrollments, or view quick course-level reports. 


Mainly, catalogues are used for self-enrollment for formal training. The learners are presented with the library of content that they can pick from, for example, professional development.

You’re allowed to set up one or more catalogues for users to browse through. You can either create one large catalogue and allow users to filter by categories or you can create many smaller catalogues without the category filter.

Division concepts (categories continued…)

If you’re a super admin, you’re going to see all the categories, as super admins have global visibility. Once you create power users, it can be specified that power users only see a certain category tree. So in that case, if you’re creating a power user for division one, that power user only sees courses within the division one category. 

GuyKat tip: Netflix Style catalogues

The initial one catalogue concept used to be the norm, where you show categories to the end-user and let them filter their catalogue based on those categories. However, this is not something being heavily used nowadays.

We’ve seen the shift to have more, and smaller catalogues. This represents the style of modern websites such as Netflix and Youtube on the catalogue page that seems to be working well. Instead of having one massive catalogue that people have to struggle to find things, bite-size catalogues, that are auto-filtered to the end-user seems to work effectively. User-experience at it’s finest – it’s like you’re browsing your favourite Netflix genres. 

GuyKat tip: Netflix Style Channels

If your platform has a social element such as Discover, Coach & Share, we usually recommend the same thing for channels. Multiple channels based on topics or roles, whatever makes sense for the user and organisation.

Advice from Jamie, GuyKat’s Director of Client Services in North America

Catalogues – formal situation

If the client doesn’t have Discover, Coach & Share, the perfect solution is catalogues if the use case is self-enrollment. Visually it will look like channels but will also give the self-enrollment option whereas channels only show formal courses if the user is enrolled.

Channels – informal situation

If the client has Discover, Coach & Share, channels are the perfect solution. Split channels out for informal assets shared within Discover, Coach & Share while using catalogues for the formal content within the platform. While informal and formal content can be mixed within channels, we typically see it split. 

Strategy before execution

Strategy comes first. In order to have a perfect solution for you, you need to know the steps in achieving it.

Generally, less than 10 catalogues is a sweet spot. If you start getting more than that, then the user experience suffers. Try to avoid excessive scrolling as users will eventually give up if it’s not easy for them to find the content they’re looking for.

Think about your favourite department store. Now imagine that there were no signs labelling the various departments and every aisle was void of signage. Imagine the frustration of trying to find anything in that store. Now tie that back to your learning platform and one massive catalogue that isn’t labelled or split out. You’ve just created the same frustrating experience for your learners. 

If you’re not sure – start small, you can always add additional catalogues or channels later. A small pilot is also a good idea to see if users found content easily or had any struggles.

The whole problem that we see a lot is over-engineering, where the client thinks they have to come up with every possible way a learner might search for content. Instead, think about how typical users might search for content and start there. Always ask yourself ‘If I’m the person who just started in the company, what would be the easiest way to find a particular course?