Digital Marketing

9 Thinkific Alternatives You Should Consider in 2022

Undoubtedly, Thinkific is among the best EdTech platforms that facilitate the creation, marketing, and sales of online courses.

But not every software platform is built for everyone, and hence, there are several Thinkific alternatives in the market that cater to different purposes and needs.

This article is focused on helping educators decide which is the best online course platform for their needs.

Before we dive into the list of best Thinkific alternatives, let’s first review Thinkific to understand its key features and identify who should consider Thinkific over its alternatives.

Thinkific Review

Thinkific is an all-in-one platform for creating and selling online courses.

It provides an intuitive drag-and-drop course builder, cloud hosting, ecommerce functionality, and many other functionalities necessary for course creation, marketing, and sales.

However, two things that make Thinkific stand out from its alternatives are the customization options and free plan.

The free version offered by Thinkific supports up to 3 online courses for unlimited learners. It also facilitates tools to market and sell online courses.

Moreover, the customization features offered by Thinkific are almost unreal.

From branded site themes and landing pages to customizable courses, educators can do almost everything to tailor their online courses and websites as per their preferences.

Key Features

  • Easy drag-and-drop functionality for course building
  • Multiple instructor profiles
  • Assessments and quizzes
  • Full ecommerce functionality
  • Flexible pricing
  • Live lessons
  • Branded website and landing pages
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Live chat support
  • Secure cloud hosting
  • Discussion forums

Pros

  • Easy to operate course building wizard
  • Seamless ecommerce integration
  • Advanced learning management functions
  • Whitelabling option
  • Team collaboration features for educators

Cons

  • Lacks marketing functionality
  • Poorly-optimized LMS functionalities
  • Thinkific doesn’t offer an integrated sales funnel builder

Tool Level

  • Beginner/Intermedia

Usability

  • With a drag-and-drop course builder, Thinkific is an easy to use platform.

Pricing Plans

  • Free Trial
  • Basic: $39 per month billed annually
  • Pro: $79 per month billed annually
  • Premier: $399 per month billed annually

However, every platform has its pros and cons. For you, what it means is that if the cons matter to you, you better look for Thinkific alternatives.

Top 9 Thinkific Alternatives in 2022

Here are the top Thinkific alternatives that you can consider for creating and selling online courses. Thoroughly compare their features, pros, and cons to make the best choice for yourself.

Let’s get started.

1. LearnWorlds

Image via LearnWorlds

What’s easier than creating a PowerPoint presentation? Creating online courses on LearnWorlds.

Yes, it’s true. The online course creation process on LearnWorlds is flawless as you can easily add sections and content to the courses using the versatile course builder, which is built keeping non-tech-savvy educators in mind.

Also, educators can set scheduled lesson delivery via the drip-feed function.

This way, the learners won’t get access to the entire course material at once. Instead, the platform will drip-feed the content to the learners as instructed by the educators.

In terms of marketing and sales for online courses, LearnWorlds has a lot to offer including sales promotions and coupons, subscriptions, course bundles, etc.

We’ve recently done the detailed LearnWorlds review. Go through it to find why LearnWorlds is undoubtedly the best Thinkific alternative out there.

Key Features

  • Comprehensive courses
  • Dedicated mobile app for iOS and Android
  • Interactive video player
  • Learner portal
  • Comprehensive website builder
  • Ecommerce functionality
  • Built-in learning management system
  • Sales pipeline management
  • Marketing funnels
  • Learner engagement analytics
  • Learner’s certificate management
  • Multiple payment options for learners

Pros

  • Easy course creation process, even for advanced courses
  • Next-gen integration capability coupled with SCORM compliance
  • Advanced marketing capabilities including affiliate management
  • Flexible pricing plans
  • 30-day free trial
  • Friendly support team

Cons

  • No advanced gamification for motivating learners
  • Lacks learner authentication
  • Doesn’t offer a truly free version like other Thinkific alternatives
  • Unlike Thinkific, not suitable for corporate training

Tool Level

  • Intermediate/Advanced

Usability

  • The user experience is swift and smooth, making it easy to use and accessible like many other Thinkific alternatives.

Pricing Plans

  • Starter: $24 per month billed annually
  • Pro-Trainer: $79 per month billed annually
  • Learning Center: $249 per month billed annually
  • High Volume & Corporate: Price available on request

2. Teachable

Image via Teachable

Teachable is another one of the Thinkific alternatives that are easy to use. Similar to LearnWorlds, Teachable is a platform where educators can create courses and market them via building their websites.

Where Teachable lacks in terms of being a true Thinkific alternative is corporate employees and customer training.

During our review, we found that Teachable is only suitable for standalone educators and institutions, not for corporate training.

Even for inexperienced educators, the platform might seem low on learning-focused features. The reason is that the platform focuses more on the sales and marketing side.

However, recently, Teachable introduced open APIs for third-party tool integration and student engagement features like comments, quizzes, and certifications of compilation.

This is the reason why Teachable ranks second on this ultimate list of Thinkific alternatives.

Key Features

  • Drag-and-drop course builder
  • Website builder
  • Self-paced courses, cohort-based courses, and live classes
  • Group coaching
  • Open API
  • Student engagement features like quizzes, comments, and certifications
  • Multiple payment options for learners
  • Sales promotional features like order bumps, memberships, bundles, coupons, and upsells
  • Easy migration from other online course platforms
  • Tax management
  • Business intelligence powered by data analytics and reporting
  • Data privacy coupled with 99.99% uptime

Pros

  • Easy course creation process
  • Seamless integrations
  • Advanced marketing capabilities
  • Built-in email broadcasts
  • Flexible pricing plans
  • Free plan
  • Live chat support

Cons

  • No white-labeling option with starting plans
  • Lack of advanced learning and assessment tools
  • Not compliant to SCORM or TinCan/XAPI
  • Lacks template versatility
  • Lacks mobile app customization
  • Free plan has a transaction fee of $1+10%

Tool Level

  • Beginner

Usability

  • It is relatively easy to use.

Pricing

  • Free plan
  • Basic: $39 per month ( 5% per transaction fee)
  • Pro: $79 per month
  • Premier: $399 per month

3. Podia

Image via Podia

Although Podia isn’t the best Thinkific alternative in terms of features, it’s one of the most budget-friendly alternatives to Thinkific.

The platform has basic functionalities for course creation and learners’ engagement. The good part is that the course creation process is simple and straightforward and doesn’t overwhelm beginners.

However, Podia is exceptional with marketing and selling functionalities as compared to other Thinkific alternatives. In addition to setting the course prices, the educators can also create upsells and offer coupons for sales promotions.

One downside is that Podia has fewer integration options compared to other Thinkific alternatives. Still, you get native integrations with Convertkit, Mailchimp, ActiveCampaign, AWeber, MailerLite, and Drip.

Podia is an excellent alternative to Thinkific for educators who are new to online content creation and want a simple tool to get started.

Key Features

  • Pre-sell courses (i.e., crowdfunding)
  • Podia Community
  • Zoom and YouTube live integrations
  • Website builder
  • Unlimited hosting
  • Built-in email marketing capability
  • Ecommerce features
  • Customizable website

Pros

  • Priced lower than other Thinkific alternatives
  • Built-in email broadcasts
  • Truly free version
  • Advanced features for marketing at a competitive price

Cons

  • No while-labeling option
  • Doesn’t provide functionalities for student engagement
  • Doesn’t offer business intelligence
  • Not compliant to SCORM or TinCan/XAPI
  • Free plan has a high transaction fee of 8%

Tool Level

  • Beginner

Usability

  • Podia offers a simple user experience to get non-tech-savvy educators online.

Pricing

  • Free plan
  • Mover: $29 per month
  • Shaker: $89 per month
  • Earthquaker: $199 per month

4. LearnDash

Image via LearnDash

LearnDash is a very different LMS solution than the Thinkific alternatives discussed in this article previously. It is a WordPress plugin that enables websites to offer Thinkific-like learning features.

Many educators already have their own website and want to integrate the LMS functionality into the website itself. But integrating LMS into an existing website requires deep knowledge and experience in LMS development.

LearnDash mitigates this challenge for educators by providing an easy-to-integrate WordPress plugin for websites. The platform also provides a boot camp where educators can learn how to create online courses effectively.

Unlike many other Thinkific alternatives, LearnDash offers integration with an endless number of third-party services in the EdTech ecosystem This includes Zapier, BuddyPress, Mailchimp, WooCommerce, Slack, and Stripe.

Features

  • Drip-feed content
  • Student engagement features like progress reminders and rewards
  • Drag-and-drop course builder
  • Advanced quizzing
  • Dynamic content delivery
  • Flexible prerequisites
  • Student badges and certificates
  • Student discussion forums and leaderboards
  • Assignment allocation and submission
  • Subscription, memberships, and course bundles
  • Build access for learners
  • Exceptional third-party integrations
  • Centralized dashboard
  • Enhanced reporting

Pros

  • Inexpensive compared to other Thinkific alternatives
  • Can be integrated with any third-party service of your choice
  • White-labeling option is available
  • Highly-customizable
  • Takes mere minutes to integrate with a WordPress site

Cons

  • Suitable only for WordPress websites
  • Isn’t suitable for non-technical educators
  • Lacks a free-trial and offers just a 15-day refund policy
  • Requires third-party integrations for email, payments, and other functionalities
  • Integrations can be expensive, increasing the overall cost of ownership

Tool Level

  • Intermediate/Expert

Usability

  • Given the advanced LMS features and the requirement to integrate with a website, the learning curve for LearnDash is steep.

Pricing

  • Basic: $159 per month billed annually
  • Plus: $189 per month billed annually
  • Pro: $329 per month billed annually

5. Kajabi

Image via Kajabi

Kajabi is one of the most expensive Thinkific alternatives in the market. Also, it’s more complex than most other Thinkific alternatives.

However, Kajabi offers a dedicated assistant to help educators get the best out of the platform.

The website builder and some of the marketing features Kajabi offers are at par with that offered by the top Thinkific alternatives, making selling online courses a breeze.

The in-built email marketing feature is fabulous, as it comes with cart abandonment emails and email automation capabilities.

Similar to Podia, Kajabi offers unlimited hosting support to enable educators to upload an endless amount of course content, including videos, files, and photos.

In terms of integration, Kajabi seamlessly integrates with email marketing platforms, membership sites, and payment gateways and processors.

Features

  • Can create online courses, podcasts, and coaching programs
  • Marketing campaigns management
  • Advanced marketing automation features
  • Sales funnels
  • Built-in CRM
  • Payment integration with Stripe and PayPal
  • Mobile app
  • Business intelligence powered by useful metrics and reports
  • Dynamic landing pages for your products
  • Dedicated blogging platform

Pros

  • Ability to clone products and offers
  • Supports bulk sales
  • Easy to use
  • Customer service is good

Cons

  • Restricted number of courses and students per plan
  • Need to pay extra if you want to access the code editor
  • Doesn’t offer a free plan

Tool Level

  • Intermedate/Expert

Usability

With in-built CMS and a website builder, Kajabi is easy to use compared to other Thinkific alternatives.

Pricing

  • Basic: $119 per month
  • Growth: $159 per month
  • Pro: $319 per month

6. Teachery

Image via Teachery

If you want to kick off your online tutoring business and sell online courses, Teachery is one of the most affordable Thinkific alternatives for you.

What makes this learning management system builder a great pick for creating courses is its powerful customization engine.

Educators can easily customize the look and feel of their courses to make their courses look more appealing and engaging.

Another thing that astonishes users is Teachery’s easy-to-use user interface. For instance, a sidebar provides access to all the features and sub-features of the platform.

However, Teachery doesn’t offer a video hosting service. So, you’ll have to invest in third-party video hosting services like Vimeo, YouTube, or Wistia to upload your course material.

Still, it offers decent features for the cost and is a budget-friendly Thinkific alternative for small businesses.

Features

  • Unlimited courses, lessons, and students
  • Simple live course editor
  • Allows embedding video, audio, and slide presentations
  • Customizability with course style editor
  • Marketing tools like recurring payments and promo codes
  • Sales pages, landing pages, email capture pages and payment pages
  • Memberships and course bundles
  • Integration with email service providers like Mailchimp and ConvertKit
  • Zapier integration
  • Custom domains for websites
  • Provides tracking code for analytics
  • Drip content delivery

Pros

  • The interface is user-friendly
  • No transaction fee
  • Onboarding process is beginner-friendly
  • Templates for different types of pages
  • Excellent customer support
  • Priced lower than other Thinkific alternatives

Cons

  • Doesn’t offer community management features
  • Lacks hosting facility
  • Lacks useful functionalities for student engagement
  • Not compliant to SCORM or TinCan/XAPI

Tool Level

  • Beginner/Intermediate

Usability

  • With the requirement to obtain a separate hosting service, using Teachery requires technical knowledge of moderate level.

Pricing

It offers a 14-day free trial and a single plan with the following prices:

  • Monthly: $49 per month
  • Yearly: $470 per year

7. Udemy

Image via Udemy

As of December 2021, more than 9,500 businesses and their employees were using Udemy to upskill and reskill.

You might wonder if Udemy is that popular; why isn’t it on the top of our list of Thinkific alternatives?

It is because Udemy doesn’t offer white-labeled LMS building services. It’s just a marketplace like Amazon where creators/educators can sell the courses.

Also, educators (known as instructors on the Udemy platform) only receive 37% of the course price unless the learners buy from the instructor’s coupons or referral links.

We recommend using Udemyonly as a marketplace where you get exposure to a larger audience.

You can list your introductory courses on Udemy and the rest of the advanced courses on your own hosted platform. This way, you can upsell to the huge audience you get on Udemy.

Features

  • Teach hub
  • Advanced marketing capabilities such as retargeting ads
  • Ad Hoc email campaigns
  • Course catalog
  • Assignments and reports
  • Coupons and discounts
  • Ready-to-use LMS platform

Pros

  • Doesn’t require any fee to get started
  • Educators don’t have to possess any technical knowledge
  • Udemy is a trusted and popular platform making it great to find learners and sell courses
  • Extremely useful transcript section for learners
  • Great customer service
  • Ability for students to learn on the go

Cons

  • Udemy takes a huge share of profits
  • Educators don’t have the control over the superiority of their courses
  • Educators can’t utilize learners’ data as they don’t own it
  • There’s a lot of competition on the platform and it’s difficult to make your courses stand out
  • Udemy’s instructor requirements and standards are challenging to meet

Tool Level

  • Beginner/Intermediate/Expert

Usability

  • Udemy is highly optimized for non-tech-savvy educators, making it one of the most user-friendly Thinkific alternatives.

Price

It’s free to get started with Udemy, but it charges the following prices per sale:

  • 3% when the sale is made via instructor's referral code
  • 63% when the sale is made directly through the platform

8. Ruzuku

Image via Ruzuku

Ruzuku is a simple yet effective Thinkific alternative that enables creators to offer online courses and set up affiliate programs to market them.

Although Ruzuku isn’t the least expensive Thinkific alternative available in the market, it’s still budget-friendly. However, the platform doesn't offer a free plan.

Given its price, Ruzuku offers only the basic features for online course creation, marketing, and sales. Still, there are some exclusive features like learners’ social integration and teleconferences that other Thinkific alternatives don’t offer.

Note that there isn’t any built-in webinar software solution with Ruzuku. So you’ll have to integrate Webex or Zoom with the platform to host webinars.

Still, Ruzuku is one of the most budget-friendly Thinkific alternatives in the market.

Features

  • Allows multiple instructors and site managers
  • Option to create and market unlimited courses to an unlimited number of students
  • Polls and quizzes
  • Unlimited hosting support for video, audio, and data
  • Support for PayPal and Stripe
  • Basic ecommerce functionality
  • Subscription and payment plans
  • Dedicated account manager
  • Comprehensive support

Pros

  • No transaction fee
  • Comes along with a course style editor
  • Offers unlimited courses and access agents
  • The user interface is easy to operate
  • Allows course duplication
  • Responsive email support team

Cons

  • No website builder
  • Does’t offer any free plan
  • Offers very few integration options
  • Lacks useful functionalities for student engagement
  • Not compliant to SCORM or TinCan/XAPI

Tool Level

  • Intermediate/Expert

Usability

  • As Ruzuku doesn’t offer a website builder, it isn’t practical for non-tech-savvy educators

Pricing

  • Bootstrapper: $74.75 per month billed annually
  • Up-and-comer: $83.08 per month billed annually
  • University: $125 per month billed annually

9. Skillshare

Image via Skillshare

If you were to compare Skillshare and other Thinkific alternatives, you would discover the former is not the best for creating courses from the ground up.

However, Skillshare is excellent for courses on artistry, drawing, and writing. If your online course focuses on ‘creativity', then Skillshare has the audience, features, and support/assistance to make it valuable.

Also, Skillshare offers a community and a marketplace (much like Udemy), making it a great alternative for Thinkific for selling courses.

Features

  • Student engagement tools
  • Offline mobile casting capabilities via mobile app
  • Class creation and promotion
  • Online course marketplace
  • Feedback mechanism
  • Integrates with most tools in the ecosystem

Pros

  • Easy to use the admin panel
  • Offers a shared learning experience
  • A popular marketplace for online courses makes selling easy
  • Free to get started

Cons

  • Educators have to share of profits with Skillshare
  • Educators don’t own learners’ data
  • Huge competition on this course platform

Tool Level

  • Beginner/Expert

Usability

  • Easy to use.

Pricing

  • The platform is free for educators. The educators can earn via referrals and royalty. Check out the website for more information.

FAQs

Q1. What are the top Thinkific alternatives in the market?

A. Following are the nine best Thinkific alternatives you can opt for in 2022:

  1. LearnWorlds
  2. Teachable
  3. Podia
  4. LearnDash
  5. Kajabi
  6. Teachery
  7. Udemy
  8. Ruzuku
  9. Skillshare

All these Thinkific alternatives are meant for different purposes. So pick the one that suits your specific needs.

Q2. What are the most highlighted features of Thinkific you should look for in its alternatives?

A. Following are the important features of Thinkific you should look for in its alternatives:

  • Drag and drop functionality for online course creation
  • Whitelabling
  • Student assessments and quizzes
  • Live lessons
  • Discussion forums
  • Comprehensive ecommerce functionality
  • Subscription and flexible pricing plans
  • 24/7 customer support and live chat
  • Secure cloud hosting

Q3. What are the challenges educators face with Thinkific?

A. Due to the following challenges with Thinkific, people look for its alternatives:

  • Lacks a marketplace
  • Doesn’t offer its own email marketing tool
  • Slightly on the expensive side
  • Video upload speed is poor
  • Doesn’t offer an integrated sales funnel builder

Q4. What top 10 features should an online course creation platform ideally have?

A. An online course creation platform should boast the following features:

  • Drag and drop course builder
  • Interactive video player
  • Learner portal
  • Comprehensive website builder
  • Ecommerce functionality
  • Marketing tools
  • Learner gamification features like quizzes, comments, and certifications
  • SCORM or TinCan/XAPI compliance

Q5. What are the top budget-friendly online course platforms?

A. The most suitable budget-friendly online course platform will have necessary features offered at a much lower price compared to other Thinkific alternatives.

Following are the best online course platforms, in terms of cost effectiveness:

  1. Podia
  2. Teachery
  3. Ruzuku

Q6. What marketing features should you look for in Thinkific alternatives?

A. An online course platform should have the following marketing tools to help educators sell online courses:

  • Automated marketing communications
  • Sales pipeline management
  • Marketing tools like funnels
  • Learner engagement analytics
  • Promotional features like memberships, bundles, coupons, and upsells
  • Built-in email marketing capability
  • Built-in CRM
  • Recurring payments and promo codes

Q7. Which is better: Thinkific or LearnWorlds?

A. Thinkific is an awesome platform for creating online courses, but the challenge comes in selling. The platform doesn’t offer a marketplace as well as advanced features like email automation and sales funnels.

LearnWorlds offers lots of features to help educators create, market, sell, and manage online courses. It wins the comparison with Thinkific in almost every segment except corporate training, which is the expertise of Thinkific.

Q8. Which is better: Thinkific or Kajabi?

A. Thinkific is a great platform for educators to create online courses. It also facilitates corporate training, which most Thinkific alternatives lack.

On the other hand, Kajabi outshines Thinkific in terms of features and functionalities. However, with Kajabi, the costs higher than Thinkific. If budget is your concern, better go with Thinkific.

Wrapping Up

Thinkific is undoubtedly an incredible platform for individual educators as well as corporations. It has many useful features that help educators create and sell online courses.

However, Thinkific has its limitations.

This is where the Thinkific alternatives come into play. The Thinkific alternatives that we’ve listed a wide range of options for different budgets and purposes.

Which of these Thinkific alternatives will you pick? Comment below.

Gaurav Sharma

Gaurav Sharma is the Founder and CEO of Attrock, a results-driven digital marketing company. Grew an agency from 5-figure to 7-figure revenue in just two years | 10X leads | 2.8X conversions | 300K organic monthly traffic | 5K keywords on page 1. He also contributes to top publications like HuffPost, Adweek, Business2Community, TechCrunch, and more.

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