If you’ve been thinking about building an online course, then you’ve got impeccable timing. There hasn’t been a better time than right now to get started.
But once you take that initial leap, you’ll find out that there are many platforms you can use to host online courses. Two major contenders on the market are Thinkific and Teachable. It can be hard to discern which one is right for you, so we’ve done some work to make that decision easier.
Ahead, we’re putting these two online course platforms to the test: Thinkific vs Teachable. But first, let’s explore what you should look for in an online course platform.
What is an online course platform?
An online course platform is a software service that provides you with a robust set of prebuilt tools and features to build and deploy online courses.
You might be wondering, “Why would I want to use an online course platform?” The answer is simple: These services are great because they’ve done a lot of the hard development work already. And that means you can focus on just creating an awesome course.
Developing the software needed to deliver online courses— let alone good ones—takes a lot of time and money. Creators choose online course platforms because it allows them to focus on what matters: their members and their content.
Before we compare Teachable and Thinkific, let’s unpack what you should look for in an online course platform.
What you should look for in an online course platform
As we stated earlier, there are many online course platforms on the market. And a lot of these platforms offer different flavors of the same features too. So let’s hone in on what you should look for in online course platforms in general.
The best online course platforms should allow you to do the following things:
- Seamlessly organize, manage, and create content in easily digestible ways.
- Provide you with the tools to build an online community around your online course where your members can interact with one another.
- Do you know what’s great? Having options! The online course platform you pick should provide a high level of customizability for you to experiment with to grow your business.
- And most importantly, you should be able to do all of the above easily.
At the end of the day, we believe that online course platforms should make your life easier. And all of the ideas listed above will allow you to create an inviting space for your members to learn and connect.
Now that we’ve talked through our philosophy on online course platforms. Let’s dive into Thinkific vs Teachable by looking at a broad overview of the two services, and how they stack up against each other.
Thinkific vs Teachable: Who are they?
Before we do our deep dive into the criteria for our heated face-off, we thought it would be helpful to explain what they are. As we said at the top, there are many different online community platforms and they all emphasize different things.
Thinkific is an online course platform that has a major focus on content creation. On Thinkific, you can create and sell online courses that utilize a variety of third-party integrations. On top of that, you can deliver both dripped courses (where you release material for your course as you create it) as well as full content drops all at once.
Teachable is an online course platform that focuses on customization and ease of use. They are a popular online course platform option because of their “power editor” tool that allows you to create multimedia content from live coaching sessions to lectures on top of offering third-party surveys for members to interact with.
Thinkific vs Teachable: Judgment criteria
When there are so many online course platforms to choose from, it can be hard to figure out which one is best for you. Below, we’ve broken down some key criteria you should think about when choosing a platform:
- Customization and a varied feature set. There are a lot of similarities between Thinkific vs Teachable. Because of that, you should think about the types of customization options they offer. Why? Because when you have more freedom to experiment, you have more power over your online course’s success. Customization gives your members new ways to interact with one another. Features like polls, video lectures, discussion boards, subgroups, and more provide new experiences to your members.
- Monetization. If you’d like to make money from the online courses you create, having a few monetization options is important. Providing your members different ways to pay for what they’re interested in is a great motivator to get people to hop aboard. Examples of this would be offering different payment methods like a monthly, annual, or one-time fee. And of course, whatever you decide, the process should be easy for your members.
- Availability. Your members should be able to access your online course whenever, wherever, and however they want. If people can access your content in a variety of ways they are more likely to stick around and stay interactive. Finding an online course platform that can be accessed across the web, iOS, and Android is a must.
There are plenty of ways to evaluable online course platforms, but we believe these criteria are the most important. So now we can get on to the main event: Thinkific vs Teachable. The online course square off! Okay, maybe it’s not that serious…Let’s dive deep into what these platforms have going on.
Thinkific vs Teachable: Customization and varied features
In this category, we’re looking at which online course platform offers more options for you to experiment with how you create content. Customization and varied features are important because they allow you to re-engage your members with new experiences.
Thinkific and Teachable offer a lot of the same features. But with Thinkific, you have the option to start out on a free plan. The online course platform also offers advanced quiz creation tools and feedback surveys (something that Teachable doesn’t). These might seem like small attributes, but having robust ways to get member feedback is a major benefit. Plus, more in-depth quizzes will allow you to go deeper with your course content.
In addition to these two features, you can utilize text and video for your content, deploy discussion boards for members to interact on, and more. Thinkific also offers solid features for building your course website and sales pages.
When it comes to customization, Teachable offers a fairly robust set of features. Utilizing their platform to build an online course will give you access to strong editing software for video lectures and coaching sessions. You can also utilize quizzes and other third-party integrations. And on top of great customization features for designing content, you get unlimited access to video bandwidth, students, and the number of courses you can offer.
One thing to note, however, is that Teachable completely doesn’t have robust community building toolset. You can offer great content, but your members will really miss out on connecting with other like-minded people who are interested in accomplishing similar goals.
Thinkific vs Teachable: Monetization
Another important category to consider with online course platforms is how you can make money and charge for your content. When we think about monetization, it’s not just about offering options for how members access your work. It’s also directly tied to the types of experiences that the platform will allow you to great (like paid memberships).
Monetization will be a big factor for many people in deciding between Thinkific or Teachable. Luckily, Thinkific gives its creators a solid set of options for figuring out the best way to price your course. With Thinkific you have access to charging subscription fees or offering paid memberships. On top of that, you can offer coupons and discount offers to members who have disappeared or potential new customers.
When you’re able to make the process of paying for your content easy for people they are more likely to buy into what you’re offering. No one wants to jump through a bunch of hoops to get what they want.
Additionally, Teachable offers detailed analytics so you can keep track of your sales, member interaction, and sales pages. Another unique feature that Teachable offers is the ability to appoint members into leadership roles and even pay them for their work.
Thinkific vs Teachable: Availability
In this day and age, many people want to interact with content and communities on the go. Whether it’s on their phone, tablet, or computer, having your course available in many places is incredibly valuable. their phones and mobile devices. We believe that the best online community platforms allow you to build a space that is available where your members are.
Thinkific falls behind when it comes to its availability options. They do not offer any kind of mobile app experience. This means that your members will have to access your online course through the web. We’re in a day and age where having your content available is a major benefit to sales and member activity. Don’t sleep on having these options.
While Teachable does have an app, it isn’t designed to be used as a primary option for members to interact with your online course. On top of that, it’s only available on iOS which bars a good chunk of members from even having the option. Your members’ ability to access your online course anywhere they are is important. Choosing an online course platform with a native app should be near the top of your list in your decision-making process.
Thinkific vs Teachable: Who is the winner?
So is Thinkific better than Teachable? If you couldn’t tell from our breakdown above, the two platforms are offering you very similar experiences for building online courses.
If you’re only comparing Thinkific vs Teachable then it will largely depend on what you’re hoping to accomplish with online courses. Both offer similar experiences when it comes to customization and monetization and it will largely come down to aesthetics.
Ultimately between Thinkific and Teachable, we think that accessibility is the sticking factor. While Teachable only offers an iOS experience with their mobile app, that’s better than nothing. So between Thinkific vs Teachable, we believe Thinkific is a better option.
But let us ask you a question: What makes online courses thrive? If your answer is having awesome content, then you’re not seeing the entire picture. The other major component of online courses is fostering a community around your content where people can commune and interact.
When people are able to form real connections around your brand, that is what will keep them coming back for more. Unfortunately, neither Thinkific nor Teachable offers much in the way of community options. They are good for starting your online courses and getting your feet wet, but you’ll grow out of them pretty quickly.
Pairing an online course platform with a community platform
Another avenue you can try is pairing Thinkific or Teachable with a community space built on Mighty Networks.
If there’s one thing that has proved to be true as online courses have gained popularity, it’s that having a dedicated community space can help bring your business to the next level. Why? Because when you create an online community, you can focus less on churning out content and more on build lasting connections with and between your members.
Creating connections between your members allows you to build additional value for your business. It also allows you to step away from your desk with ease because members will continue the conversation long after you’ve left to work on new material.
On your Mighty Network, you can host virtual events, create a paid membership site, connect your online course students together, and much more.
That’s great and all, but we’ve got something better.
So we’ve covered the major differences between Thinkific vs Teachable. They are both solid platforms that will allow you to build online courses. But why settle for something “solid” when you can have something great?
We’ve built a much better online course experience on Mighty Networks. Why? Because we offer almost everything we’ve covered between the two platforms above in addition to being a world-class online community platform.
When you choose to build an online course on Thinkific or Teachable, you’re closing yourself off from a lot of options. Here are just a few of the many things you can do with Mighty Networks:
- Offer paid memberships.
- Utilize an “activity feed” feature makes it easy for members to keep track of all the awesome content you’re providing.
- You can post recorded videos (Update: we have native live video on courses now!), images, and audio clips.
- You can have free small groups or charge for access.
- Create polls, quizzes, and surveys.
- Build online courses that are fully customizable.
Not to toot our own horn, but if you can’t tell, we’ve got a lot going on. And on top of all those features, the work you build on your Mighty Network is available across the web, iOS, and Android which gives your members flexibility for how they interact with each other and your content.
Not bad, right? Check us out!