Teachable vs Thinkific: Guide For Beginners

In today’s article from Better Sales Funnels, we are comparing Teachable vs Thinkific from the perspective of a beginner course creator. 

Teachable vs Thinkific

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What is Teachable?

Teachable is an all-in-one online course hosting platform. Teachers create their content, and then use Teachable as a place to make it available to students. The platform has tons of tools for teachers, giving them the ability to communicate with students, drop content to students, take payments, and to use affiliates to help market courses.

Teachable is an alternative to building a website, and putting together all of the tools necessary to sell online courses (plugins, checkout pages, sales funnels, etc).

What is Thinkific?

Like Teachable, Thinkific is also an all-in-one online course hosting platform, with similar abilities and features. (And also, they are Canadian). 

How do the prices compare?

Teachable has four pricing options:

  1. Free, meaning no base monthly fee (pay transaction fee of $1 plus 10% per course sold)
  2. Basic, $29/month (5% transaction fee per course sold)
  3. Professional, $79/month (no transaction fees)
  4. Business, $399/month (no transaction fees)

These amounts are the per month amounts if you pay annually. If you want to pay per month, Basic is $39/month, Professional is $99/month and Business is $499/month. 

Teachable vs Thinkific

Teachable also charges a processing fee for transactions (credit cards, Paypal, etc)

Thinkific has very similar pricing:

  1. Free
  2. Basic $39/month
  3. Pro, $79/month
  4. Premier, $399/month

These are the amounts if you pay annually. If you pay per month rather than annually, Basic is $49, Pro is $99, and Premier is $499/month.

Teachable vs Thinkific

What are the differences in the Free plans?

Both companies have “free” options. Frankly, the Free plans of both of these companies would be sufficient for any beginner who was looking to get started teaching courses online. 

Each of the companies reduce some of the features on the Free plans.

Thinkific limits you to three courses on the Free plan, while you can have as many courses in the Teachable Free plan as you like. 

Thinkific also limits your ability to integrate outside tools on the Free plan, such as Aweber, Mailchimp, ActiveCampaign, Infusionsoft and others. 

Here’s a list of the other features blocked on the Thinkific Free plan: randomized quiz question bank, prerequisite lessons, marketing analytics integrations, coupons, promotions, payment plans, bundles, upsells, groups, custom domains, remove Thinkific branding, scheduled classes, completion certificates, webhooks, bulk student emailer, API, Priority Support and affiliates.

Teachable blocks the following features on the Free plan: live chat support, graded quizzes, custom domain, coupons, integrated affiliate program, integrated email marketing, third party integrations, drop course content, completion certificates, and unbranded website.

Honestly, it seems like the primary differences in these two plans is that Teachable charges a transaction fee of $1 plus 10%, while Thinkific does not, and that Thinkific limits the number of courses on the Free plan, while Teachable does not. 

Getting Started

These are very similar platforms. If you read reviews about each of the products, you’ll see that many users say that both platforms are quick and easy to use, very functional, do what they need to do, and more. 

As far as choosing a platform, we lean towards recommending Teachable over Thinkific for beginners, simply because there is more room to grow. Teachable charges that 10% transaction fee, but does not limit the number of courses you can publish on that plan. With Thinkific, there is a ceiling that requires you to go with a paid plan after you publish three courses, even if none of your courses are making you any money. With Teachable, you can post as many courses as you like, and only pay that transaction fee when something sells. If and when you start making money off your courses, it is a simple thing to upgrade. 

This comes into play if you, as a beginner, start with publishing free courses. You might want to put out 3-5 free courses before you publish a paid course to build your following. You won’t be able to do that on Thinkific without jumping to a paid plan, which might need to occur before your business is even profitable. 

Get started with Teachable for free.

By the way, you know we love Skillshare, right?

You might already be teaching on other platforms, but we just love Skillshare. It is such a neat little platform, that is so very welcoming and friendly to creators. Skillshare is a subscription based model, rather than per-course. Students watch as little or as much as they want, can search through the catalog and find your content, so there is no marketing required.

Teachers get paid per minute consumed, and Skillshare offers teaching workshops and prizes for participating in Teach Challenges (gift cards, recording equipment, Free Months/Years of Skillshare Premium, trips to New York, and more). You can upload content that you have published to other platforms (like Youtube, Udemy, Teachable and more). It seems silly not to utilize that content if you could monetize it another way. 

I have said that Skillshare is a really great place for people to get started teaching, because it is so easy to do (and free to teach there). There is tons of training and since you can get free access to Skillshare if yuo complete a teach challenge, you can watch all the courses you want to see how other successful creators are making it happen without having to spend a lot of money buying tons of courses.

You can get two months free of Skillshare to check it out and see if you want to teach there.

Teachable vs Thinkific

If you do want to teach, leave a comment so we can connect, Skillshare will give us each $50 if you are referred by another Skillshare teacher.

Your thoughts?

Have you tried Teachable or Thinkific? Leave us a note in the comments and tell us what you recommend!

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