The advancement of technology has decentralized the learning process. Gone are the days where you must be present in a brick-and-mortar classroom to learn. Anyone and everyone can now learn a course or skill and gain certification online.
The ease of access, ability to learn at your pace and instant connection to world class teachers and educational content has made students and professionals from all facets of life prefer online learning to other forms of learning. The market size of eLearning is estimated to be about $240 billion by 2023.
The eLearning boom has created a lot of online platforms where professionals and anyone with a skill to teach can create a course and teach. Some of these online course creation platforms provide you the privilege to sell your branded online courses.
Thinkific vs Teachable are two platforms which allow you to sell your branded online courses and make some money.
Now you don’t have to be worried that you are not a web designer if you desire to create and sell your courses online. Thinkific vs Teachable provides you with website building tools and a sales platform to market and sell your online courses.
This article provides you with a comparison guide to help you know which between Thinkific vs Teachable is best for your online courses.
Teachable is a household name in the online course creation business. And not just because they have been around for long, it’s more a thing of the features they offer.
Teachable is trusted by thousands of course creators and serves millions of students worldwide. The platform is user-friendly, as students find it intuitive and easy to navigate. But that’s just one half of the story. What about course creators?
Most course creators that prefer Teachable, do so for its simplicity and fast setup. It is possible to create a course on Teachable in one day. Provided you have the course content and your preferred structure ready to go.
What more should you review about Teachable. Let’s consider its pros and cons.
To create a course on Teachable is as easy as it comes. The design follows a drag-and-drop system. After launching your course website, you can straightway get to plug in all your teaching content in form of videos, texts, and audios.
On Teachable, you can launch a course with any of the plans available including the free plan. The only disadvantage to this is the transaction fee attached. If you’re on a tight budget, however, this is a good deal to get you started before going on a paid plan.
Other main features of Teachable are the theme and course player. These are somewhat limited which makes it difficult to create aesthetically different content from competitors. Nevertheless, the default theme and course players do have a nice feel to them, hence students shouldn’t have a problem with getting along.
When it comes to certification, course creators get the option to choose from three available templates and award to students who complete the courses. This process is often automated and easy to set up.
If you’re looking for some dynamism and style for your online courses, then think Thinkific. This course hosting platform provides its customers with plenty of options to help add branding and specificity to your paid content online.
Although, many of the features and functions of Thinkific come with the premium plans. The free plan is quite enough to help you test the waters and see if the platform is something that would work for you.
Thinkific has enough functions for course creators to create courses that exactly suit their needs. This is what specificity is all about. The page builder which makes up the foundation for your online course has over 20 templates to explore. And not just that, the themes, page elements, and course player, all have multiple styles from which you can choose.
All of these features come as templates, a classic plug and play model. Course creators can fit in their course content into appropriate areas without any hassle. And if you have technical knowledge of how sites work, Thinkific also allows for editing of the backend code that structures an online course.
If you want students to get a certificate of completion after going through your course online, Thinkific provides you with 7 different templates to design your certificate. This gets delivered to students in a PDF once they finish going through the modules.
Finally, one last prominent feature of Thinkific is its ease of integration. This starts from the payment options available for course creators to use. You have PayPal and Stripe at the fore, with several other payment platforms also supported. Other possible integrations include marketing and automation apps, third-party sites, among several others.
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Comparing Thinkific vs Teachable
Either you are just starting to create an online course or you are looking to upscale your online courses, this in-depth comparison will help you make an informed decision on which of the two platforms will benefit you the most.
Both platforms offer rich and robust online learning platform solutions, which makes them the most preferred amongst course creators. However, the final verdict or decision is in your hands. You will have to decide which platform meets your requirements.
Teachable vs Thinkific are similar online learning platforms. They both offer unlimited video storage, essential course creation tools and other features such as domain names, hosting and SSL certificates. This makes them an all-in-one platform and separates them from other learning platforms.
On these two platforms, you can also protect your course content, accept online payment, give quizzes and assignments, deliver invaluable top-notch contents professionally and interact with your students.
The best part is; you don’t need to be knowledgeable in any technical skill to achieve all these. Teachable vs Thinkific possess a capable team to handle all these techy sides. The idea of Thinkific vs Teachable is to provide you with an easy to use platform to create and sell your online courses.
Since Thinkific vs Teachable are similar, you may find it difficult to know which is best for you as a course creator. To save you the time and energy from doing cumbersome research to know which is best for your online course I have evaluated Thinkific vs Teachable under these different factors.
Hence, the feature which appeals to you the most would help determine which between the two platforms is best for you.
1. Ease of course creation
These two platforms Teachable and Thinkific have dominated over other available online learning platforms. Their popularity is due to the fact that they have made it extremely easy to create and sell an online course.
Both platforms are user friendly without a complex user interface. Alongside the provision to host unlimited video contents, PDFs and text, they also give you access to create quizzes, track student progress, send certificates, and organize your course contents into comprehensible lessons and chapters.
In terms of ease of course creation, there are some specific differences which exist between Teachable and Thinkific. Some of these differences include
Content upload and structure
Thinkific is more flexible vs Teachable as it supports more content types. It supports assignment lessons and a live lesson feature. Meaning homework submission is made easier and you hold a live lesson session with your students on zoom. This isn’t available on Teachable.
You can drag and drop bulk files to upload contents on both platforms. You can also reorganize these uploaded contents by dragging and dropping.
Teachable course builders are more user friendly and easier to use compared to Thinkific’s course builder. With Teachable course builders you can bulk select and change the settings of the course from the curriculum page without going to individual lessons.
Teachable also allows you to import your course contents directly from Google Drive or Dropbox. This cloud import feature makes it easier to use and it works for all types of course contents. Thinkific however do not have this cloud download feature for all content types.
When it comes to content upload and structure, Teachable course builder is much easier to use but Thinkific course builder is more flexible in terms of supported content types.
This feature is available only to Thinkific. It allows you to prevent your students from moving ahead of themselves by skipping courses. You can set specific lessons as prerequisites within your course. These prerequisite lessons lock all other contents until they’re attended to.
Thinkific also allows you to manage your videos in one place. Without re-uploading your files, you can reuse videos between courses. This is not available on Teachable.
In summary here are eight pronounced features four for Thinkific and another four for Teachable that differs them from each other in terms of course creation.
- Easy and fast pace of launching an online course through its drag and drop feature
- All types of multimedia content including surveys, downloads, discussions, type form, videos, audios and other forms are supported.
- Integrates easily with mailchimp, constant contact and other email marketing softwares.
- You can easily publish an online course leveraging on pre-built themes.
- Enables you to easily upload contents from cloud storage services including Drop box, Google drive and One drive.
- Language can be easily modified to suit foreign students visiting your online courses.
- Drag and drop feature helps create an engaging functional website
- Any member of your team can use its power editor feature to implement customized features.
2. Marketing and Sales
There is no need creating an online course if students won’t pay and enroll for it. As an online course creator, you need students. Marketing is a primary and very important task for all online course creators.
The marketing strategy employed can either increase or decrease the number of students who enroll for your course. Inevitably, marketing and sales determines your ultimate success.
Hence, in choosing a platform to use for your online courses, the marketing and sales capability of the platform should not be taken with levity.
The two platforms Thinkific and Teachable are both equipped to provide sophisticated strategies and solutions to the problems of marketing and sale.
Although there are similar in some of the e-commerce tools there offer such as:
- The sell Lifetime access to courses
- Affiliate marketing programs for sharing your online courses
- The generation and use of coupon codes
- The use of email marketing campaigns
- The use of course tracking and Google analytics tools
These ecommerce tools make Thinkific and Teachable more preferred to other online course creation platforms. However, there still exists some key differences.
This is probably the most important difference between Teachable and Thinkific. The checkout process of Teachable is more efficient and easy to use. Teachable provides a highly optimized single checkout process where prospective customers can purchase your online course by simply filling in their information and making instant payment on the same page.
Thinkific on the other hand requires your prospective customers to first create an account before access can be granted to the payment page. This has led to a minimal customer conversion rate on the Thinkific platform.
So if your decision making is dependent on sales and marketability then Teachable is a great choice.
One of the marketing and sales differences between Thinkific and Teachable is the blogging feature. Teachable provides you; the course creator the opportunity to generate website traffic and build your audience by creating blogs. Thinkific does not have nor offer this feature.
Thinkific as a way of marketing automatically collects the reviews of your students and displays them on your landing page as testimonials. They also increase the organic traffic to your course by allowing the star ratings to appear in search listings.
This course review feature is not available nor offered on Teachable.
Thinkific helps to make more sales of your course by providing a countdown timer. This countdown timer increases the urgency of your offer to the prospective customers by instilling in them the fear of missing out on the offer.
While this feature has been very effective on Thinkific, it is not offered by Teachable
3. Free trial offers
It is difficult to have students enroll for your course when you are just starting out or where you don’t have a recognized brand yet. Free trial offer allows prospective customers to have a taste of the icing by offering them one or two free lessons.
This free trial offer option exists only on Thinkific. Teachable has no such feature.
4. Transaction fees
Both platforms offer similar transaction rates. But the Teachable rate is a little higher to Thinkific. These two platforms charge a 10% transaction fee. However, Teachable charges an extra $1 per transaction.
For instance, if your course cost $85, Thinkific and Teachable would charge a $8.50 transaction fee. But Teachable would charge an extra $1 making the transaction fee of Teachable to total $9.50.
5. Instant Payouts
The payout system gives another striking difference between Thinkific and Teachable. Thinkific offers its members instant payouts immediately when a sale is made.
You don’t need to wait or meet a requirement to get your money. The reason this is possible on Thinkific is that Paypal and Stripe will be integrated even on the free plan.
Teachable on the other hand does not allow the integration of Paypal and Stripe until you sign-up with the professional plan which costs $99.
6. Mobile Apps
Everyone loves a mobile app because it gives them the privilege to work from anywhere; either while sitting at lunch, relaxing at night or even while waiting at the doctor’s office.
Hence, people are likely to enroll for courses on a platform which offers a mobile app feature. Teachable does have a mobile app and this gives the members on the platform an additional way to take a course in their spare time.
Thinkific on the other hand do not have a mobile app for reasons I cannot fathom and I think it is a huge disadvantage to their amazing online learning platform
7. Presentation Tools
A great course will have no impact on its students if it is not presented in the right and professional way.
When it comes to presentation tools, Thinkific offers the best. They offer valuable presentation tools that allow you to voice over your slides.
So either you are using Keynote or PowerPoint you can now create awesome presentations. If you are just starting out with a tight budget you know this tool is invaluable. Teachable does not offer this feature.
8. Customer Service
The two platforms; Thinkific and Teachable, both offer a good and robust customer service via: online tutorials, active Facebook groups for queries, support tickets, knowledge base blogs and onboarding emails.
However, you will agree with me that the most valuable technical support is both real-time and personalized. Something only Teachable offers.
Although Thinkific’s customer service is a bit friendlier and email support more responsive than Teachables email support, because they do not offer any real time customer service channel, Teachable customer support is better.
Because nothing beats a live support channel where queries can be resolved in real-time and in a personalized way, Teachable customer service can be said to be better than Thinkific.
However, this awesome real-time live chat support can only be accessed on the Teachable platform when you purchase their professional or business plans. The basic level only offers email support.
Smaller businesses and entrepreneurs are always on the look-out for cost effective platforms. So I will show you the difference between the pricing fees of Thinkific and Teachable.
Thinkific has a free plan feature which allows you to test run your online courses on the thinkific platform without having to pay dime. With this free plan feature you can create three courses.
Thus, if you are on the look-out for a small course website, then this might work.
Thinkific pricing plans
- Free: a limited core feature of the Thinkific platform is available to you all for $0. Some of the limited features available to you on this free version are: Upload of only three courses, quizzes and surveys, unlimited students, immediate access to your funds and content hosting.
- Basic: The basic plan cost the sum of $49 per month. All features in the free plan are also available on this basic plan alongside other features like: communications with students through the use of email, coupons, unlimited students and courses, affiliate marketing, drip contents, custom domains, manual student export and enrollment.
- Pro: The pro plans are for professional online course creators. It costs $99 per month. All previous features in the basic plan is available plus other features such as: two site admin, hidden and private courses, five course admins, advanced pricing, advanced customization, unlimited courses and students and priority support
- Premier: The premier plan costs $499 per month and all features in the pro plan are included. You will also have access to features exclusive to this plan such as: 50 course admins, onboarding package, five admin accounts, a single sign in option and access to Thinkific’s growth package.
Teachable pricing plans
Having considered what Thinkific’s pricing plan looks like, let’s plunge into the pricing plans of Teachable.
- Free: This plan is for you to test out the Teachable It provides you an unlimited course upload but to a limited number of 10 students. However, you have to pay a transaction fee of 10% and an additional $1 for all your paid courses. You will have access to basic features like student management, discussion forums, integrated payments, basic quizzes and email support.
- Basic: This costs $29 per month. It includes all features mentioned earlier in the free plan. It also covers 5% transaction fees, instant payouts, custom domains, coupon codes, two admin users, course creation training, integrated affiliate marketing, drip content and email marketing.
- Professional plan: for $99 per month everything in the previous plans are made available to you. You also gain access to priority customer support, advanced customization, advanced reports, completion certificates, five admin users, instant playouts and course compliance
- Business: Teachable business plan costs $249 per month with access to all features in free, basic and professional plans. The business plan also provides you access to 100 admin users, manual student importing, priority support, bulk enrollments and custom user roles. No transaction fees and instant payouts are unique features which also comes with the business plan.
With careful consideration I found the Teachable free plan is in various ways better than the Thinkific free plan. This is because it supports an unlimited number of courses. You should choose a platform based on your budget and what works for you but if you are just starting out, you might want to try out the Teachable platform.
10. Affiliate marketing
Thinkific and Teachable both offer amazing affiliate marketing programs so that you can promote your online courses through affiliates.
Both platforms give you access to create custom commission percentages for your affiliates and also select which of your online courses they can promote.
Although the two platforms offer similar affiliate marketing capabilities there exist some differences which allow one to be preferred over the other.
From careful consideration I found out that Teachable affiliate marketing features are powerful and can be customized compared to Thinkific. With the Teachable affiliate marketing feature you can set a custom cookie period for all your affiliates. This isn’t available on Thinkific.
The best part for me about Teachable affiliate marketing features is you can automatically pay out your affiliates when you use their gateway. This comes in handy when you have a large number of affiliates in your online courses.
11. Data Analytics
Many organizations are going through and completing their digital transformation phases. This means that now more than ever businesses have to leverage on data to efficiently stay ahead in the business world.
It’s essential for every business to understand user data generated through the marketing campaigns.
Hence, using an online course platform which offers excellent solutions and actionable business insight through its data analytics features is invaluable.
Thinkific Data analytics features
- Campaigns can be highly personalized and targeted at a particular group of people
- Gives you access to individual students status through specific filters
- Ease of integration with data analytics tools such as Google Ad Words and other remarketing tools
- Email broadcast can be sent to selected groups within the user base
Teachable data analytics features
- The analytics features of Teachable grant you access to track students sign-ups and your earned revenue within a given period of time.
- You can easily come up with actionable plans from exported student information and course revenue data
- You can send customized course related information to any marketing tool of your choice with its robust integration with Zapier.
- Grants you the privilege to know which marketing campaign of yours converted the most students into your online learning platform.
Both online course platforms offer an excellent and reliable analytics tool in tracking the progress of your customers and you can also leverage these data analytical features to optimize your marketing campaigns.
Hence, go with that which suits your desires.
12. Security Measures
One of the measure challenges faced by websites and online businesses is cybersecurity threats. These threats are on the high side when you collect payment online through your website.
Being the most populous online course learning platforms, Thinkific and Teachable offers strong security measures to their clients in order to safeguard financial transactions and personal data.
Here are some of the security measures put in place by both platforms
- 24/7 Secure cloud hosting to keep clients data save
- You have total control and absolute ownership over your data
- A periodic security update is done automatically so that you are always updated.
- Thinkific platform comes with a seamless built-in SSL certificate that ensures your contents are stored in a secured server
- The platform leverages on 2048-bit SSL certificate to secure all student’s data
- You have complete control and ownership of your data
- Instantly incorporate new security features with its fixed automatic updates.
- The platform is integrated with PCI level-1 compliant payment providers. This ensures absolute data security.
Although both platforms offer excellent security features, Thinkific is more preferred because it has the capability to keep maximum amount of uptime and also provides some extra security features.
From the comparison of both Thinkific and Teachable it is obvious that Thinkific offers a number of great features which can help you launch your online courses and drive your growth even without any knowledge in website designs or programming languages.
It is the best option for businesses looking for a platform with precise features, reliability and security. Their free version contains some features and tools which makes it a great USP to other online course platforms. Make sure you evaluate all features of both platforms judiciously against your specific requirements and make sure you pick the most suitable option for you.