Thinkific vs Teachable In-depth Comparison: What’s Best for You? (2023 October update)

by Oct 2, 2023

Introduction: Thinkific vs. Teachable

Quick Overview (TLDR Version)

When it comes to creating and selling online courses, having the right platform can make all the difference.

I am a nerd.

When I started selling courses online, I went all in and tried most of the platforms out there.

Hands down one of the best ones are Thinkific and Teachable.

These are the two popular options that have gained significant traction among course creators. Both platforms offer powerful features and tools to help you build, market, and sell your online courses.

In this comparison article, we’ll take a closer look at Thinkific and Teachable to help you make an informed decision and choose the best fit for your online teaching business.

Key Features Comparison

The Core Features

Both platforms have incredible core features which enable you to produce high-quality online courses – and not only that.

These platforms have evolved into full digital commerce platforms. So think of them as online marketing toolkits with e-learning capabilities in their core.

Thinkific: Thinkific has more customization opportunities in my experience when it comes to the layouts of your course materials and the design of your landing pages.

This can be good or bad. Depends on what you’re looking to get out of your online product. I personally like tweaking and A/B testing my design endlessly.

Teachable: Teachable is a bit more robust all-in-one solution that focuses it’s offering on specific use cases. It has a slight upper hand when it comes to UI (in my opinion) and some specific functions like the ability to sell in multi-currencies or have dedicated features to sell other products not just courses.

In addition at core, teachable is investing into AI support tools which, as they evolve make life of course creators even easier.

I would say this category winner is Teachable if you’re looking a more all-in-one product that works out of the box..

Sales and Marketing Tools

Thinkific: Thinkific offers an array of marketing tools to help you attract and convert potential students. You can create custom promotions, discounts, and free trials to entice learners to enroll.

Additionally, Thinkific provides advanced email marketing capabilities, enabling you to communicate directly with your audience and build meaningful relationships.

Teachable: Teachable also provides a solid set of marketing features, including integrated email marketing, upsells, and coupon creation. The platform’s email marketing tools are effective for basic communication, but they may lack some of the advanced features offered by Thinkific.

Thinkific comes out on top with its comprehensive marketing arsenal, ideal for nurturing leads and boosting conversions.

Payment Processing

Thinkific: With Thinkific, you have the flexibility to choose from various payment gateways, making it easy to collect course fees from students worldwide.

The platform supports both one-time payments and subscription models, empowering you to monetize your courses in the way that suits your business best.

Teachable: Teachable also supports multiple payment gateways and allows for one-time payments and subscriptions. It offers a seamless checkout process for your students, making it hassle-free for them to purchase your courses.

This category is a tie, as both Thinkific and Teachable offer comparable payment processing options and pricing models.

Student Engagement and Progress Tracking

Thinkific: Thinkific’s student engagement tools include discussion forums, quizzes, and certificates upon course completion. The platform also enables you to track student progress and gather valuable insights into their learning journey.

Teachable: Teachable provides similar engagement features, including quizzes, certificates, and a user-friendly interface. However, it might not be as robust as Thinkific when it comes to tracking student progress.

Thinkific holds a slight advantage in this category due to its comprehensive student engagement and progress-tracking capabilities.

Price Comparison

Side-by-Side Pricing Comparison

Comparing something side-by-side can give us good indications of how much we’re likely going to spend on each product based on our needs.

If you’re new to online courses then you’re likely not sure what features you actually need and how much you’re going to pay eventually.

So what you can do in the beginning is just evaluate the total cost of different price points and see if there are any major differences.

First of all, both platforms offer monthly and annual subscriptions and both have FREE plans available. Annual payments are with a discount encouraging you to commit at least for a year.

This is actually what I recommend getting. If you commit to something then it’s less likely you’re going to back out during your journey.

But for the sake of comparing the price I will be looking at the monthly prices.

Let’s start with the first tier – FREE

Key Takeaway

I made the list a bit more compact by not listing out all the features that both tools have in their core anyway.

The key differences here are the transaction fee. Thinkific in this sense is truly free. No subscription and you don’t pay any transaction fee. So this is suitable if you’re planning to sell something at a very low price point and want to keep the majority of profits. Think of micro courses – teach something in 10 minutes and ask 5$ for it.

Other than that they are extremely similar.

Let’s move on to their next plan – BASIC which includes all the features from the FREE plan.

Key Takeaway

With the first paid plan both platforms stack up some nice value.

The first noticeable difference is the transaction fee. It’s still 0% on Thinkific. This is again great if you’re selling low price items.

The second noticeable difference is the amount of content you can publish. With Thinkific you can publish an unlimited amount of courses which is not the case with Teachable. Again this is good if you plan to sell a lot of small courses. If you have one big master course then probably you don’t need to create over 5 different product either. 

Both platforms have nice support and course materials also available at this price point which can easily shortcut your way to success.

Let’s move on to their next plan – START/PRO which includes all the features from the BASIC plan.

Key Takeaway

Here you can see a bigger price point change for Teachable.

The main selling point for the price increase is the 0% transaction fee and significant bump on the number of products (courses) you can create within your account.

Both platforms take big steps in new features here however it might be a bit more favorable towards Teachable if you need to publish a lot of content. With Thinkific you do get a mobile app version of your school which makes it more engaging and easier for your students. Teachable also has an app, but it’s currently only available for iOS. 

I would say that Thinkific at this price point is still meant for solopreneurs and creators while Teachable takes a more serious approach to onboard your team and co-authors. 

Let’s move on to their next plan – GROW/PRO+ which includes all the features from the previous plan.

Key Takeaway

If you’re already at a stage where you need to pay $200 for your online course platforms the difference between the two gets very slim.

You’re still somewhat limited with Teachable if you need to publish a lot of stuff and I mean a lot.

Both platforms offer great additional add-ons where you can expand your plan and make it even more customizable. Therefore it really starts coming down to your personal preferences.

Final words on pricing – 

I would say that Thinkific is great if you’re just starting out and want to minimize your costs. If you’re at a higher pricing point and need more features they both pack similar value. 

Teachable Free vs. Thinkific Free

Okay so if we just look at the free plans of both platforms. In short, I would personally go with Thinkific because it’s truly free.

Sure with Teachable you only pay if you sell and make money, so you could just up your prices a little bit to get the same amount of money. To be fair I think the value these platforms offer on their Free plan is very similar with the exception that Thinkific enables you to sell at an extremely low price point.

So if you’re not ready to publish your long big expensive course yet and maybe just want to use a short course as a lead magnet to offset some costs for acquiring leads I would go with Thinkific.

Are Paid Versions Worth it?

This depends a lot on what you need. It’s mostly a volume-based business. Are selling internationally and do you have multiple authors who produce a lot of content? If that’s the case then yes get the paid version. It’s likely going to be a very small cost in your overall monthly expenses.

If you’re just starting out and creating your first course – go with Thinkific.

Final words on pricing

I would say that Thinkific is great if you’re just starting out and want to minimize your costs. If you’re at a higher pricing point and need more features they both pack similar value.

Pros and Cons

Advantages of Teachable

  • Ease of use is definitely one of Teachable’s selling points. It is extremely user-friendly.
  • Teachable analytical overview of the progress of students is a bit more clear and and gives a better understanding how your students are doing and how are your marketing campaigns doing.
  • Powerful set of marketing tools and integrations.

Advantages of Thinkific

  • Complete data ownership. Unlike Teachable, Thinkific guarantees you full data control and ownership.
  • Very good tax integrations which allow you more customization on how to calculate and do taxes on your revenue.
  • Value for money is definitely one of the main selling points of Thinkific.

Disadvantages of Teachable

  • Limited design and customization options. If you want more freedom with design Thinkific offers slightly better options however still somewhat limited.
  • Teachable has limited storage space and amount of courses you can create. So you will need to be careful about how much content you upload.

Disadvantages of Thinkific

  • Lack of integration options with third party tools. This may become a problem, if you already have a certain set of tools that you use and you need to integrate them with your online courses.
  • Both platforms offer great support if you reach higher tiers plans, but when you just start you only have to settle with knowledge-base articles and Youtube videos.

Ease of Use

Which is easier: Teachable or Thinkific

To be honest, this depends a lot on your current skills with content and website.

For complete beginners, both platforms may be a bit overwhelming in the beginning. As I mentioned before I’ve personally tested them both at a certain point and I think Teachable is slightly easier and faster to get started with if you’re using all the default settings.

With Thinkific I remember spending a bit more time setting things up, but I was able to get a more satisfying end result in terms of design and overall process setup.

Since both offer free plans and you can totally get started with that, I suggest trying them both out and then decide which seems easier to manage for you personally.

Course Creation and Customization

Thinkific: Thinkific provides a user-friendly course builder that allows you to create engaging multimedia-rich courses effortlessly. With its drag-and-drop interface, you can easily organize your course content, including videos, quizzes, surveys, and more.

The platform also offers robust customization options, allowing you to brand your course pages to match your website’s look and feel.

Teachable: Like Thinkific, Teachable offers a straightforward course creation process. Users can upload a wide range of content types, including videos, audio, PDFs, and text. Although Teachable’s course builder is slightly less customizable than Thinkific’s, it still offers a clean and professional layout.

Thinkific takes the lead in course customization due to its extensive branding options and intuitive course builder.

Alternatives to Teachable and Thinkific


Okay, so first things first.

Udemy is more like a marketplace than a tool that content creators can use to run their own businesses.

Having said that, Udemy is a widely recognized online learning platform that provides a diverse range of courses on various subjects, enabling learners to acquire new skills, expand their knowledge, and enhance their personal and professional development.

The marketplace model, allows individual instructors, experts, and professionals to create and publish their own courses. This results in an extensive catalog of courses spanning topics from technology and business to arts and personal development.

In contrast, platforms like Thinkific and Teachable focus more on empowering instructors to create their branded online schools.


Skillshare is another prominent online learning platform that offers a wide array of courses spanning creative and practical disciplines.

Unlike traditional e-learning platforms, Skillshare fosters a sense of community and collaboration among its users. It operates on a subscription-based model, granting members access to its entire course library, which covers topics such as design, photography, writing, and more.

What sets Skillshare apart is its focus on project-based learning and its emphasis on interactive content, encouraging learners to not only absorb knowledge but also actively apply it through hands-on projects. This approach creates an engaging learning experience that promotes skill acquisition and creative exploration.

While platforms like Udemy, Thinkific, and Teachable offer a broader range of subjects and instructor-driven courses, Skillshare stands out for its community-oriented learning model and its commitment to fostering practical skills through project-based lessons.


Another wonderful platform that allows you to sell products and courses is Kajabi.

Kajabi is a comprehensive online platform designed specifically for creators, entrepreneurs, and businesses looking to monetize their knowledge and expertise.

It offers a suite of tools that encompass course creation, website building, marketing, and sales, all within a single integrated platform. Kajabi allows users to design and host their own branded online courses and membership sites, providing a more seamless and unified experience for both creators and learners. This platform caters to those who seek a more sophisticated and streamlined approach to online education, blending course creation with marketing automation and sales functionality.

Unlike other learning management systems, Kajabi is geared towards entrepreneurs and businesses looking to establish their digital presence, manage their content, and monetize their expertise efficiently.

With its focus on offering a complete solution for online business and education, Kajabi provides a distinct alternative to other platforms like Udemy, Thinkific, and Teachable.


WordPress is definitely a great option if you need a lot more customization possibilities.

No joking, most of world’s websites run on WordPress and it is a great platform to build whatever.

WordPress boasts robust capabilities for hosting online courses through various plugins and themes tailored for e-learning.

With plugins like LearnPress, LifterLMS, and WP Courseware, WordPress transforms into a versatile learning management system, allowing educators and businesses to create and manage their online courses, quizzes, assignments, and student interactions.

This adaptability sets WordPress apart from dedicated e-learning platforms. While platforms like Udemy, Skillshare, Thinkific, Teachable, and Kajabi offer more specialized features and built-in tools, WordPress offers unparalleled customization and control.

Users can craft a unique online learning environment with tailored branding and design. This flexibility is particularly advantageous for those who wish to integrate online courses into their existing websites, aligning their educational efforts with their overall online presence.

However, WordPress’s capabilities require more technical proficiency and setup, making it better suited for those willing to invest time in crafting a tailored e-learning experience compared to the more straightforward solutions offered by dedicated platforms.

Nowadays building a site on WordPress is also considered significantly easier than let’s say 10 years ago. Site builders like Divi help you build a new website without you needing to touch the code at all.


Another tool worth mentioning when it comes to selling courses and content online is ClickFunnels.

ClickFunnels is a powerful marketing and sales platform that focuses on creating highly optimized and conversion-driven sales funnels.

While not primarily designed for traditional online course hosting like Udemy or Thinkific, ClickFunnels can be utilized to offer online courses as part of a broader sales strategy.

Its drag-and-drop interface enables users to design and customize sales funnels that guide potential learners through a sequence of steps, from initial awareness to course enrollment. ClickFunnels’ integration with various payment gateways, email marketing tools, and membership site functionality allows creators to not only sell courses but also manage ongoing interactions with students. Unlike platforms solely dedicated to online education, ClickFunnels emphasizes creating effective sales processes and landing pages, which can be particularly appealing to entrepreneurs and businesses aiming to market their courses and other products in a cohesive manner.

However, ClickFunnels may require a learning curve and additional third-party tools to provide a comprehensive online learning experience comparable to the specialized e-learning platforms mentioned earlier.


FAQ: What People Ask?

Why is Thinkific better than Teachable?

Determining whether Thinkific is better than Teachable, or vice versa, depends on your specific needs and priorities. Both platforms offer online course creation and hosting capabilities, but they have different features and strengths.

Here are a few reasons why some might consider Thinkific to be better than Teachable: 


  • Customization Options
  • No Transaction Fees
  • Advanced Pricing Options for students
  • Course Player Experience
  • Engagement Tools

Is Thinkific free worth it?

It absolutely is worth it!

I’ve run several courses on the free plan and it’s great! If you’re on a tight budget and you don’t care too much about nice automations and branding and simply want to get your content out to your students as soon as possible then Thinkific free plan is way to go.

What is the difference between Teachable free plan and Thinkific free plan?

You may refer back to this article about the pricing plans. As mentioned both platforms offer free plans nowadays and then main difference comes from well still the price. Thinkific is truly free with its 0% transaction fee while Teachable takes a considerable cut from your sales.

What is the advantage of Thinkific?

Thinkific is a great out of the box learning content management system.

My personal opinion is that that value of Thinkific especially shines in the first tiers. A platform that allows you to setup your online course store for free and enable you to collect payments without any extra fees is truly a high value offering.

Can I use Thinkific as my website?

Yes, you can use Thinkific to create a website that serves as a platform for hosting your online courses or just information about your business.

However if you’re looking setup a custom domain for your business then you might want to look some other option as this is not included in the free plan.

If you’re on a shoestring budget I’d recommend Google Sites. I’ve built some simple sites there. It’s completely free and you’re able to integrate your own domain there as well.

Can you go live on Thinkific?

While Thinkific doesn’t have a direct live feature built-in, you may use the zoom integration or any other video streaming platform like YouTube where you host your live stream and integrate this seamlessly to your lessons.

What percentage of sales does Thinkific take?

The great thing with Thinkific is its 0% transaction fee. Whatever you sell you keep. To make it even more valuable this is throughout all the different tiers. Even on free plan you can enjoy 0% transaction fee.

Conclusion: Thinkific vs. Teachable

Final verdict

Both Thinkific and Teachable are excellent platforms for creating and selling online courses.

Your choice between the two depends on your specific needs and priorities.

If you value extensive customization and advanced marketing features, Thinkific might be the better fit. On the other hand, if you prefer a user-friendly interface and a simple setup process, Teachable could be the right choice.

In the end, it’s essential to weigh the strengths and weaknesses of each platform against your business requirements to make an informed decision.

Regardless of your choice, both Thinkific and Teachable can help you take your online course business to the next level.

Happy teaching and selling!

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Hey, I’m Johannes. I’ve been doing digital marketing since 2010. Over that time I’ve sold courses, sold digital products and managed my own marketing agency.

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I’ve been using both Thinkific and Teachable myself and over the years I see myself coming back to Thinkific. I’m recommending this platform to all my readers and students.

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Hey, I’m Johannes. I’ve been doing digital marketing since 2010. Over that time I’ve sold courses, sold digital products and managed my own marketing agency.


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