There are many online course platforms out there that you can use for creating, marketing and selling online courses. Some of the most popular ones include Thinkific, Teachable and Zippy Courses, etc. Among them, Thinkific and Teachable are two of the best online course platforms as they offer unlimited courses, users, video storage and bandwidth on all plans. Both have a reasonable price and offer robust solutions that are quite similar in everything they offer. Since Thinkific and Teachable are very similar to one another, many course creators aren’t able to decide which out of the two they should use. Thinkific vs Teachable confusion troubles them and they spend a lot of time researching to determine whether they should adopt Teachable or go with Thinkific.
If you search Google, you’ll find a few articles dedicated to the Thinkific vs Teachable comparison. However, there is no comprehensive review that compares the two solutions in detail. Therefore, we have decided to provide a comprehensive comparison of Thinkific and Teachable. We compare the two platforms based on different criteria. So without further ado, let’s move to the Thinkific vs Teachable comparison.
Thinkific Video Overview
To better understand the Thinkific online course platform and what it offers, we suggest watching the YouTube video overview below.
Teachable Video Overview
Similarly, we suggest watching the below YouTube video overview for Teachable to help better understand what this online course platform offers.
Thinkific vs Teachable Comparison
Criteria #1: Creating Courses, Working with Students and Deliver the Content
Tracking and Course Progress
In the Thinkific vs Teachable comparison, both Thinkific and Teachable are quite similar in tracking and course progress. They provide some basic level analytics, allow checking students’ individual progress and sending them email. They both offer good support features such as allowing you to send bulk emails based on filters.
For the purpose of email marketing, you can send emails to segmented users in the platform. However, for advanced level email marketing, some other tools like MailChimp or ConvertKit must be used. From a usability point, it is much easier to find tools related to student progress in Thinkific. However, Teachable offers a similar functionality. It just takes more time to find everything in Teachable.
If you are looking to promote your course(s) via 3rd party email marketing platforms or other tools, check our list of Marketing Tools to help.
We mentioned ConvertKit above, this email marketing tool can be used to help manage and send out your email marketing campaigns. Regularly sending out great email marketing campaigns is hughely important if your want to grow your online course business. To learn more about two of the industries leading pieces of email marketing software click on the following link ConvertKit vs Drip.
The user-experience of Thinkific is much better than that of Teachable. On Teachable, one must know coding or use third-party tools for creating textual content. For example, if you have to survey, you’ll have to create one using Google Forms. Thinkific offers built-in surveys.
With Teachable, it’ll take you longer to figure things out. Thinkific is much simpler and easier to understand of the two in the Thinkific vs Teachable comparison.
Building, Customizing and Designing Landing Pages
When it comes to user experience, Thinkific is much more enjoyable for creating courses and building landing pages. It takes time to learn Teachable and customize things. However, Teachable does have a slight edge over Thinkific on user-experience when it comes to designs of certain pages like sales.
Thinkific provides a lot of exceptional intro videos to help users understand the platform. Unfortunately, Teachable doesn’t do the same and it takes a lot of time to dig into their resources and uncover essential functionality.
Thinkific has an edge as it allows building magnificent landing pages without the need for coding. Teachable’s customization functionality is outdated. However, it still gets the job done.
Different languages are offered by both platforms and text elements on the course can be customized. Both course softwares are fully mobile-responsive. Teachable has its own iOS app while Thinkific doesn’t have one.
One area where Thinkific takes an edge over Teachable is with branding opportunity. If you are concerned about white labeling and branded URLs and don’t want people to know that you’re running your course through a third-party course platform, then Thinkific would be a better option. However, if you don’t care about branding, then Teachable will do the job for you. The reason is that Teachable will include their name in the URLs while Thinkific won’t.
Overall, designing pages on the Thinkific platform is a lot more enjoyable. It seems that the focus of Teachable is more on conversions and sales while Thinkific is concerned about user-experience and design.
Criteria #2: Pricing
Shopping for online platforms to create courses isn’t easy. On the pricing page of Thinkific and Teachable, you get detailed pricing plans listing all the features, but you can’t completely understand how each feature works and whether you need all of them. Fortunately, a free plan is offered by both Teachable and Thinkific, so you can test each platform without spending a single penny. However, you can’t check out all the features as advanced features are only available with paid plans.
Free and Paid Plans
Users who wish to get a feel for the two platforms should register on both the platforms and play around with the features. Course and landing pages can be set up with the free plans on both platforms. You also get unlimited video bandwidth and access to the platforms’ core features with the free plans. This means that you can start to sell your course, but you’ll have to share your revenue.
Thinkific will take 10 percent from every course sale you are able to make while Teachable takes 10 percent plus $1 from every sale. The free option is ideal if you just wish to start out. Although the free plan of Thinkific and Teachable are similar, there’s one major difference that we must highlight. With Teachable’s free plan, you will receive money from sale once every month, but with Thinkific’s free plan, funds will be deposited to your account immediately. It is thus easier to manage refunds with Thinkific. Other subtle difference is that email notifications and email integrations are allowed in the Thinkific’s free plan, while Teachable does not allow them.
Functionality and Branding
With the paid plans of these online course platforms, you will get better functionality and the option to use your own branding. The essentials/basic plans of Thinkific and Teachable is available at $49/month and $30 per month respectively. These plans provide custom domain, access to integration and require users to pay 5 percent in transaction fees.
Thinkific’s essential plan comes with core features like:
- Three courses
- Unlimited students
- Surveys and quizzes
- Content hosting
Teachable’s basic plan comes with a few features including
- 5% transaction fees
- 2 authors/owners
- Product support
- Coupon codes
- Drip course content
You should use the basic plan when you are already selling courses but the total volume isn’t high enough to allow you a pro plan, which comes with zero percent transaction fees.
The professional/business plan allows you to use all the features of the two platforms. These plans give you access to CSS/HTML editing allowing you to customize the student dashboard and sales pages. This plan gives you an unbranded, white-labeled website which means that your visitors won’t get confused by the branding of Thinkific or Teachable. In addition, you’ll get access to their live/support chat.
There are subtle differences between the professional plans of Thinkific and Teachable but these plans are for people who are already selling course and wish to leverage the full capabilities of the course building platforms.
Criteria #3: Marketing and Sales
When it comes to marketing and sales capabilities within platforms, there are major differences between the two which start from the checkout process.
The 1-step checkout process of Teachable is highly optimized: a user feeds in their personal information in the form and the payment is made on the same page. Furthermore, you can add custom elements on the checkout page like testimonials to boost conversions. However, the downside of the one-step checkout process is that there’s no way to collect the email address of the student who isn’t sure about paying for the course. That means you can’t reach out students who were on the fence about joining your course and just needed a little push.
On the other hand, the two-step checkout process of Thinkific requires the user to first enter their information to create an account and then the payment is made on the next page. Although two-step checkout takes time, it allows you to capture the email address of a prospective student who was interested in your course. You can then contact them via future email campaigns to close the deal if needed.
In the Thinkific vs Teachable comparison, affiliate marketing features of both Thinkific and Teachable are very powerful. But, Teachable scores over Thinkific in these features.
There are several other features that come under marketing and sales, but the ones we have highlighted above are the most important.
Criteria #4: Course Engagement and Delivery
Thinkific and Teachable have made it extremely easy to create online courses and that is why they are so popular. With these platforms, you can upload different content types such as .pdf files, Word files etc. and easily organize them into section, lessons, and modules.
Support for Multimedia Content
Both Thinkific and Teachable allow you to add pdf, text, audio, video and other types of multimedia content to your online courses. So, they are both similar when it comes to providing support for multiple content types. Thinkific does, however (as highlighted earlier), make it easy to collect feedback from students and complete assessments. Feedback for a Teachable course must be collected through a third party solution such as Google Forms.
On Teachable, you can only create basic multiple choice quizzes. However, on Thinkific you are free to create basic multiple choice quizzes as well as advanced quizzes. Users can create more advance quizzes using external applications. Then they can be integrated with the online course on the platforms.
Thinkific has a ‘Groups’ feature that allows users to sell the online course to organization or cohorts. With this feature, you can sell your online courses in bulk, enroll many students at once, organize them better and track their progress. The Groups feature is particularly useful for those who sell their online courses to organizations.
Teachable does not have anything similar to counter the Groups feature of Thinkific. You must create multiple use coupons for enrolling several students in your online course. It’s thus not easy to sell courses to multiple students using Teachable.
The Final Verdict
From looking at the features of the two course-creation platforms, it is clear what they both offer to us. We hope that our detailed Thinkific vs Teachable comparison helped you understand the downsides and benefits of both Thinkific and Teachable. In the end, the important question is – which one should you choose?
To be honest, there is no perfect software. The one that is right for you depends on your needs. Both these pieces of software provide remarkable features and are great for course building. However, you should choose the one that you find suitable for your needs. Check out all the features of the two platforms and then decide which one would be right for you.