I’ve been into online course creation for already more than four years and I’ve gone through all kinds of trends. Right now, I’m helping online entrepreneurs to set up their courses and this has given me a chance to compare both of the most popular course creation platforms. Let’s see where the comparison of Teachable vs Thinkific leads us!
Want to create your own online course? Check out this Course Creation Guide!
While online courses are growing rapidly, there are more and more new players getting into the game.
For my client work and my own business, I have tried platforms like Teachable, Thinkific, Podia, CourseCats, New Kajabi and others. But, at the end of the day, two of the most well-known course creation platforms for online business owners are Teachable and Thinkific.
Let’s review, which of these platforms would be the best fit for your business!
A quick disclaimer: This blog post includes affiliate links. By purchasing a service or product through my offered link, I get a small commission, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for keeping this blog alive! 🙂
Why Teachable or Thinkific, and not other platforms?
Let’s start with the explanation on why I have reviewed these two, rather simple and very similar programs, instead of making a full comparison with other platforms.
- Easy for starters. One of the main reasons why I suggest getting started with Teachable or Thinkific is obvious: both are easy to use for starters and won’t have a big learning curve. When you have a course to create, it’s important that the platform you’re using HELPS you, not stands in your way.
- Plenty of features. I’ll make the comparison of Teachable vs Thinkific offered features later in this article but let’s just say that both offer plenty and absolutely enough to work with.
- Easy student onboarding. Signing up for your students is convenient and very straight forward. You don’t need to manage your students or their personal information on your own since everything is streamlined in an easy to use manner.
- Secure payment systems. When you’re getting started with your first online course or when you need a reliable platform for your online business, having a secure and trustful payment system is crucial. Both Teachable and Thinkific offer exactly that, without much of a hassle on your end.
At the end of the day, I have chosen to write this comparison of Teachable vs Thinkific based on my client experiences and preferences.
However, if you want to create more than just a course and add in other digital products, for example, e-books or memberships, make sure to check out Podia!
Last updated: September 2019
Very often people say that both course creation platforms are really similar and, at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter whether you choose Teachable or Thinkific.
While it’s very true that the differences between Teachable and Thinkific sometimes are not as noticeable or have as big of the impact on your course, it’s still important to consider both options and understand which one will work the best for your business.
And it’s also one of the most important lessons I learned while creating my first online course: your chosen platform matters!
Therefore, let’s review the comparison of Teachable vs Thinkific.
Both of these online course platforms offer a rather simple system. But here’s the main difference:
- In Thinkific, the overall interface of the platform is a bit more complicated so it might take a while more to figure out how to get things started.
- At the same time, Teachable offers a simple layout that easily indicates where all of the necessary parts are located which makes starting out easy even for those who have no idea what the hell they’re doing!
The comparison of Teachable vs Thinkific when it comes to uploading content:
- On Teachable, you have obvious and simple drag & drop interface where you can add PDFs, photos, videos or choose to add Text or Quiz as part of your content.
- On Thinkific, to upload the content you have to choose the media type before doing the upload. This requests a bit more of the work if you plan to add various type of content for one lesson. The pro is that Thinkific offers more content variations, including exam and presentation which are not available on Teachable.
- support videos and have HD quality available
- have bulk upload possible
- offer free preview & downloadable PDF upload
The comparison of Teachable vs Thinkific in course content field rank both as equal, however, Thinkific has a bit more versatility.
The Sales Page Builder
The style of the Sales page is the main reason why I’ve chosen Teachable as my favorite online course creation platform. As many times as I have created Sales pages on Thinkific, they turn out to be either too simple or it’s too hard to make them look really professional.
Here are the differences between Teachable and Thinkific Sales page setups:
- Teachable has one style of the Sales page available but you can easily adjust it to your branding and make it work for your business. You have the option to add customized banners, use specific colors, change text style and color. It’s really easy and simple to use both for starters and professionals. Cons: sometimes, all of the Teachable sales pages really feel “all the same”, especially, if you have no additional design or development knowledge.
- Thinkific has several style options but they are hard to customize in a manner that looks good. Some of the features are too complicated to figure out for starters. Their Sales pages also don’t have as good conversion rates as Teachable.
Since Sales page is one of the most important assets of a successful course, I suggest considering your previous experience before making the decision.
If you have more time and experience, Thinkific can provide stunning sales page design options. However, if you don’t have time or interest to invest in building a beautiful page, go with Teachable instead.
When it comes to Sales Page, the comparison of Teachable vs Thinkific show us that Thinkific has more creative design variations while Teachable is easier and faster to use for starters.
Both Teachable and Thinkific offer a free plan.
One of the differences between Teachable and Thinkific is that you don’t see Teachable’s free plan on their pricing list 🙂 Other than that, on both platforms, the free pricing plan gives you the option to:
- Build & upload your course
- Create your Sales page
- Sell your course and enroll new students
However, recently Teachable presented an important limitation: in your free school, you can enroll only up to 10 free students, while Thinkific offers an unlimited number of students but only 3 free courses.
In this case, I’d suggest keeping in mind your bigger goal. If you know that you’ll upgrade anyway, it won’t matter. But if you’re making this course as an experiment or, for example, free opt-in, it might be more reasonable to stick with Thinkific instead of Teachable.
Why consider an upgrade?
Here’s what plan upgrades give you:
- Custom domain name
- Drip content
- Faster payment
- Lower transaction free
- Course bundles
Would you need it as a starter? No!
I mean, it’s totally possible to build and sell a course on the free plan. There’s no need to upgrade to get students or money. But some of the upgraded plan features are nice to have eventually!
Which course creation platform is cheaper?
Teachable. With Basic upgrade for $39.
Thinkific offers the Basic plan upgrade for $49.
Product Payment Getaway
Both of them can be used with PayPal and Stripe.
When it comes to the comparison of Teachable vs Thinkific: Teachable has the payment fees for the free courses while Thinkific has recently eliminated them (stepping up their game big time!).
However, on both platforms, it is equally easy to set up a payment getaway and make sure it’s all working flawlessly.
How to choose the best online course platform for your business?
I’ve been on Teachable for 4 years and I truly love their platform.
While I work with both, Teachable and Thinkific, I still prefer Teachable because of the following reasons:
- Their user interface is way more fun than Thinkific;
- I find them to be very supportive regarding any problems or issue;
- They’re always improving and updating their system and notifying you of the changes;
- They have free fun webinars and live FB videos!
You can learn more about why and how to create a free course on Teachable.
Why did I decide to transfer from Teachable to Thinkific?
For years, Teachable was my only true preference when it comes to course creation platforms. However, currently, I’m in the transition process to Thinkific. Why?
Since most of my online courses are free opt-ins and currently they are not the focus of my business, Thinkific comes up as a more budget-friendly option.
After the most recent Teachable update (August 2019) where I could enroll only 10 students in my free courses, I realized that it won’t be worth keeping up with.
Overall, my heart still belongs to Teachable since I’ve created all of my first online courses there. I’m still gonna be a passionate ambassador of all they do. However, it was time to part our ways. At least, for now!
To sum it up, while you have all the freedom to choose whichever online course creation platform you want to choose, my vote goes for Teachable.