The Internet has been a portal to an endless amount of information and content since its meteoric rise in the late 1900s. While access to it was limited back then, it has become more approachable and integrated into our ways of living. It has changed many aspects of our lives, including how we consume entertainment and how we shop for products. It has even revolutionized how we deal with education!
There are many ways to learn and gain knowledge in this new age. Online courses are one of the most popular ways to learn. Thinkific is a popular name when it comes to sharing courses with everyone. Did you know that there are other online platforms that offer similar functions? In this article, we’ll take a look at our four online course competitors and see how much each holds up to Thinkific’s standards!
For those of you who prefer a more visual experience, here is a video review from Useful Website’s YouTube channel. To get a comprehensive overview of Thinkific, you may still want to check out our article below.
What is Thinkific? A Short Overview Thinkific Vs Below The Line
Before we compare Thinkific to the other four, let’s first discuss what it is, how it works and how it can help aspiring entrepreneurs like you. Thinkific, a learning management software (LMS), aims to create an engaging and optimized educational environment for both students and teachers. It is a popular choice for both established businesses and new entrepreneurs. Since its establishment in the 2010s, Thinkific has been associated with big-name companies such as Samsung, Hootsuite, Intuit, and many more.
Thinkific’s main selling point is its flexibility to allow you to change everything from the way you present your courses to how you charge them. Some of its key features include the Site Builder where you’re given a platform and the right amount of customization tools to build a dedicated webpage for your courses. Another is the course editor where you get to create your curriculum according to whatever you specialize in with a wide range of templates and lesson types to choose from. You also have the option to either share your courses for free or put up a membership fee for your subscribers to pay with this feature! Thinkific’s other notable features include easy integrations to the Thinkific App Store, student data management and interactions, as well as no transaction fees.
Though Thinkific offers a free plan, you can still access basic features. However, to make the most of the platform, you should try the paid plans. The Basic plan is $39/month and the Pro plan is $79, with the option to add a Growth plan. Premier allows you full access for $399.
Thinkific vs. Teachable
Teachable is a course creation platform that has a very similar footing to Thinkific in terms of the features they offer and the popularity they have among edupreneurs everywhere. Just like the latter, the former lets you have full control of what you wish to share in your content such as pricing and student data management. You can also create your own curriculum on the platform. While the LMS services are similar in appearance, Teachable has a few unique assets that set it apart from Thinkific and other course content websites.
The Key Features
Teachable’s editing interface makes it easier than Thinkific’s. Although there are some limitations, like the lack of integrations with Storyline and Captivate, Teachable offers more options than Thinkific. You can also import content from cloud-based storage platforms like Google Drive or Dropbox. Its drag-and-drop feature is noticeably more engaging than Thinkific’s version.
Teachable also lets you use their stronger, more enhanced marketing and analytics tools, including the one-step checkout page feature which has proven to have better conversion rates than Thinkific’s 2-step process. The addition of a dedicated mobile app for iOS and live chat support in high-priced plans are among Teachable’s other notable features. Thinkific Vs Below The Line
Similar to Thinkific’s, Teachable’s four pricing plans include the Free plan that beginners may want to try out risk-free. However, what makes it different from the other is the generally lower price range.
- The Basic plan is priced as low as $29 per month.
- The Pro plan, its recommended tier, costs $99/month.
- The Business plan costs $249 per month. All features are included at a lower price than the Thinkific Premier plan which costs $399 per month.
Thinkific vs. Kajabi
Kajabi, another popular online course platform, is trusted by more than 16,000 businesses and has over 60 million students. It is a platform that offers all-in-one tools and a wide range of marketing tools to help you market your content to your target audience. Its main selling point is its ability to create a brand from one platform, with numerous marketing and customization tools. But, while Thinkific offers its services at reasonable rates, Kajabi’s pricing range is twice as high, which may impede those who want to try it.
The Key Features
It’s important that we discuss the key features that make Kajabi a premium platform. Unlike other LMS sites that require third-party integrations with marketing tools, including Thinkific, Kajabi has a whole marketing suite built into its system. You can send promotional emails to your subscribers using the e-mail marketing function.
The sales funnel software is an important feature. Kajabi’s funnel blueprint templates will make it easy to reach your target audience. Kajabi offers more than just a website and landing page editor. It also provides blogging capabilities that make it the perfect platform for creating courses.
Kajabi offers a 14-day limited trial, unlike Teachable and Thinkific which offer a free plan. It is, however, offered in three of its paid plans.
- The Basic plan starts at $119 per month
- The Growth plan is priced at $159/month – their most popular offer.
- The Pro plan costs $319 per month, which is slightly less than Thinkific’s.
Thinkific vs. Podia
Numerous course content platforms have claimed to be creator-friendly, yet don’t have enough features or services to satisfy them to the fullest. Podia delivers on that promise and is a great place to start a business, no matter how experienced or novice. It’s an online course creation service that, like Kajabi, offers all-in-one solutions. It also offers a wide range of features and tools, many of which are extremely user-friendly. Podia is a great option because you get all its incredible functions for a very affordable price.
The Key Features
You can sell online courses with Podia. However, you are also allowed to digitally download and offer membership content. Though Thinkific might have something similar, it is different in that the former focuses more on e-courses and the former on other topics. A huge advantage that the platform has above the rest is the ability to have unlimited uploads and downloads. Podia does not have file space and bandwidth limitations like other LMS services.
As Podia aims to be creator-friendly, most of the features have to be reflective of this statement. These include easy-to-use and integrated email marketing and analytics tools as well as a simple course-making and page editing process. There is also an interactive dashboard that allows you and your students to interact freely. Your courses allow students to comment. Thinkific Vs Below The Line
Apart from the recently added Free plan, Podia’s pricing range is arguably the most valuable among other course-making platforms and is also perfect for small-scale DIY creators.
- The Mover plan costs $39 per month.
- The Shaker plan is the best deal and costs $89 per month.
- The Earthquaker, another new addition, is priced at only $199/month.
Thinkific vs. Udemy
Udemy operates differently from how Thinkific – and essentially the three previous competitors we’ve already mentioned – usually works. Unlike other e-course platforms, Udemy emphasizes having one of the biggest online course marketplaces, used by more than 70,000 instructors and over 50 million students worldwide. Udemy is a great platform for beginners. Although it sounds great, you have virtually no control over the courses or students. Despite the hurdles, Udemy still allows burgeoning creators like you to get paid and make a living from selling your content!
The Key Features
One of Udemy’s greatest hits has to be its widespread marketplace platform. It’s easily accessed not just by students whenever they want to find something new to learn, but also by instructors from all walks of life due to its low-barrier entry. It also allows you to completely free-host your content! Despite its lack of customization options it makes course creation relatively simple thanks to its user-friendly interface and solid support.
Udemy allows you to create a course on any of its 100+ topics. Technology- and business-related courses are the most popular. Although the tiers are not as extensive as you might like, there are four tiers that you can choose from to charge your courses. They range from $19.99 to $34.99 to the highest.
It’s worth mentioning again that Udemy allows you to create unlimited course content for free. This is a huge advantage if you’re not into purchasing any of the paid plans that other LMS platforms have. However, once you have made a sale on the platform, be aware of the transaction fees.
The Advantages: Thinkific vs.
To bring back what we’ve talked about earlier, Thinkific is renowned for its convenient user experience and flexible customization range. This platform is likely to make it easier for instructors to explore its many features, including its App Store library of third party integrations. Additionally, you get an all-access pass to your courses and student data management, ultimately giving you full control to do as you please. What are other advantages that each of our competitors offers over Thinkific’s? Let’s find out very shortly! Thinkific Vs Below The Line
- It has a more user-friendly experience and range of features compared to Thinkific’s
- You can also use it for marketing, sales, analytics and payment options.
- It allows you to provide a one-on-1 coaching course to your student subscribers, in addition to being able to manage VAT taxes
- It is an all-in one e-course that allows you to build your brand using all the tools and services available.
- The platform already includes a number of useful marketing and analysis tools.
- It has optimized features such as dripping, pipeline building, and sales funnel tools designed to boost and improve subscriber turnout and conversion rates
- The deal is highly value for instructors because it includes the Free plan and all other paid tiers.
- Its migration process from your content from previous course platforms is hassle-free
- There are no additional fees or transactions to worry about. The interface is extremely easy to use.
- It lets you have free and full access to all of the platform’s features
- It boasts a large audience of tens of millions of students, making it perfect if you wish for your content to have a wider reach
- It has a reliable teaching center that’s a bonus for beginner instructors, as well as a supportive community of fellow teachers
The Advantages: Thinkific vs.
There are plenty of things that we like about Thinkific, but there are some that we otherwise don’t appreciate much. One is that it does not offer customer support. While other LMS platforms, such as Teachable, have live chat support available, Thinkific doesn’t. However, you can use its e-mail or phone services. The list of built-in integrations with e-commerce, marketing, and analysis platforms is much less compared to the rest, while you won’t find a Thinkific mobile app for convenient access on the go (that, however, might change soon). What other services are missing from the four other services?
- Its course compliance features are less strict and weaker than Thinkific’s
- It offers lesser payment pricing options than the other as well, despite edupreneurs having full control over everything else
- Selling courses in bulk or bundles is much more difficult.
- It is the most expensive and highest priced plan of the four.
- There is no appearance of a free plan available either – only the 14-day free trial is offered for each of its three pricing plans
- Speaking of steep prices, it may be more expensive to acquire access to more of its features, making it not ideal for the budget-conscious
- Its customization options are quite limited when it comes to course editing compared to Thinkific’s and other LMS services
- Its marketing tools are also limited in the sense that it’s not complex enough
- No student certificate credential features are included in the platform
- You have nearly nonexistent control over your course content, and you won’t have full access to managing your subscriber students either
- Its market is extremely competitive
- They take half of your earnings from courses because they charge high transaction fees
The bottom line Thinkific Vs Below The Line
Teachable may have similar features to Thinkific, but the user interface is easier to manage. In addition, Teachable covers certain aspects of course creation that Thinkific does not have. Thinkific Vs Below The Line
Kajabi may be packed with tons of premium tools, but it’s a choice that’s more appropriate for those who are willing to pay more for that. Podia is an alternative service that’s better for DIY entrepreneurs on a budget.
Udemy is an ideal starting point for newbies. However, there will come a time when you may need to establish your brand. The platform, unfortunately, does not have nearly all the tools for it.
Whether you’re an established business or a beginner, Thinkific has a wide range of features to cater to a variety of needs. There may be a couple of factors that may not suit others, but it’s generally manageable enough for everyone else to try.