Teachable vs Thinkific 2021

Teachable vs Thinkific 2021


What are Teachable and Thinkific?

Teachable and Thinkific are both great platforms where you can upload videos and quizzes, accept payments and deliver content professional manner. You get to engage with students as well.

What’s great is you don’t need big technical skills to make any of this possible as the course platforms will take care of the technical aspects of running a course.

The basic idea behind both these solutions is to provide an easy-to-use platform that allows you to get started quickly and lets you focus on your core job of creating courses and selling them.


Another important thing that you need to know about Teachable and Thinkific is that they aren’t course marketplaces like Udemy or SkillShare. So you’ll have complete control over pricing, student data as well as your policies (e.g. refund, discount, etc.).

While the two platforms are broadly similar in terms of their capabilities, they differ quite a bit in terms of specific features and that’s what the focus of discussion is going to be in the subsequent sections.

Let’s start with features for course creation first.

Course Creation & Engagement

The reason behind the surging popularity of both course platforms is because they made the tasks of creating and running an online course super-easy for anyone.

The two platforms offer dozens of similarities and they’re good choices for course delivery and engagement

The platforms let you host course videos through Wistia, let you run quizzes, organize all the content into lessons as well as modules, drip feedcontent and send certificates to students as wll.


Content Uploading & Course Structuring

On both Teachable and Thinkific you can add video, audi, pdf files, quizzes and other forms of multimedia content.

Thinkific supports a lot of content types and is a great platform that holds out a lot of promise.

Thinkificu supports assignment lessons for homework and other ways to build student engagement.

The difference between the two platforms is Thinkific supports Live lesson type. On the course builder schedule live lessons on Zoom for students to participate in them.

Unlike teachable with 

Unlike teachable thinkific lets you important things like captivate and storyline. These files are important to some creators. You can create the course structure quickly using the platforms adding content to the lessons.

For the actual process that begins course creation the platforms will let you create the course and add content. You may also bulk upload the content to the platform and reorganize the same by drag and drop.

Both course builders offer flexibility to you to add content types like text, pdf, videos in the same lesson.

Teachable’s course builder is much easier to use and is user-friendly at the same time.

You can bulk-select lessons choose settings for preview, publishing and for downloads, and set the curriculum page.

On thinkific go to each lesson and modify settings and this can take up huge time if you have a number of courses that you are running.

Teachable also lets you get content from Google drive or One drive.

The cloud import feature works across content types and for bulk uploading as well as adding content to individual lessons.

Another thing is the video library. Upload videos to the platform and use them in different lessons and courses.

Thinkific however doesn’t support you to get content directly from Google drive or Dropbox.

The cloud import feature is only available when adding videos to the video library and you can’t use it for bulk uploading in the curriculum space or for different file types like audio or pdf.

Teachable lacks a video library but you can always store the videos in Google drive and add them to teachable.

Teachable thus offers more flexibility compared to thinkific for course building from scratch.

Content Delivery (Course Player)

The course player on Teachable sports a modern and professional design that’s easy to use and access. The user  can switch between lessons and watch the lesson progress in real-time. Another thing we all love on Teachable is the course player. It is both modern and professional at the same time and enhances user-experience. 

THe user gets to navigate between lessons and sees his progress in real-time to the left. Turn on comments for lessons and the comments are appears below the content.

THe thinkific course player design is better than before but still nowhere compared to teachable. Few things I like are you can go through lesson titles and search lessons by this and this isn’t possible with Teachable.

There’s also the full-screen mode that hides the sidebar so the lesson content takes up space and gives you a distraction-less environment to learn.

Both course players are fully mobile responsive so they can finish the course on the go if they so wish. Platforms don’t have mobile apps for the users.

On thinkific there’s the feature that lets people create custom pages and restrict access on them based on what the user purchased.

If you want standalone content that isn’t just your course this option is useful.

On teachable all the content has to be inside the course which isn’t that great when building a membership site.

Both teachable and thinkific are clever for course delivery. They’re professional as well.

Coaching & Community

On teachable there’s one more product called coaching ideal for setting and selling 1 is to 1 coaching program.s

This lets you set the price, build a form, create the coaching program with milestones and clients with PMs.

On Thinkific you see a similar feature for building community and this includes a feature to build a community on your site.

Adding a community to specific courses or bundles lets you manage what students can access automatically.

Start a new discussion by clicking on Create new posts and be part of new conversations with this.

You can create a community and is good for fostering connection and communication as in membership.

COmmunities is still nascent and lacks a few features. You can create topics to organize the discussion. I guess it will get added later.

Teachable doesn’t have anything to build a community forum. They however support native comments on the platform.

Teachable’s comment system lets you embed comments on individual lectures and help students discuss and engage with students and lecturers.

Thinkific has a commenting system to allow for student discussions.

Thinkific’s commenting system can’t be embedded to individual lectures.

Thinkfici helps you get students engaging in the courses and Teachable is better for 1 on one coaching.

Quizzes & Assignments

On both platforms there are features to let you build quizzes and access features like building question banks, explanation sections and feature to import questions not currently on Teachable. Ththinkifc lets you add images to the questions and answers and that’s not a feature we see on Teachbel yet.


Also, Thinkific allows you to add an image as well as a video to your questions and the answer choices which isn’t possible if you create a quiz on Teachable.

On Teachable there’s no option to add images to your questions. This feels a bit limiting.

Thinkific integrates well with Brillium, a native application for better learner evaluation. Thinkific offers assignments. Set an assignment lesson the course and get answers from students. As evaluator, you can accept or reject submissions.

Assignments in Thinkific

Teachable lacks support doesn’t have inbuilt support for assignments at this point. The workaround in this case is to use Dropbox’s “File Request” feature but then the user experience isn’t as good.

​Finally, Thinkific allows you to create surveys natively which you can use to collect feedback from your students. If you want to collect feedback for your Teachable course, you will have to use a free solution like Google Forms. 

Overall, ​Thinkific has much better quizzing capability and it also offers the ability to create assignments and surveys which aren’t available on Teachable.

Certificates of Completion

Both Teachable and Thinkific allow you to create and send certificates of completion natively on the platform.

With Teachable, you have 3 pre-designed templates that you can choose from or you can also code a template from scratch.

Certificates in Teachable

By default, a certificate in Teachable is linked to a course and will be automatically sent to the students once they complete the course. So setting up a certificate in Teachable is really easy.

With Thinkific, the certificates feature works in a similar fashion. You can choose from a library of 7 templates and modify the content and design as your wish.

When a student reaches 100% completion in a course, they’re automatically awarded a certificate which they can download as a PDF.

Thinkific Certificate issued via Accredible

On the certificate feature you can apply a single design to different courses. On Teachable you can apply a course design to one course at a time.

Thinkific integrates with a popular service called Accredible. If you’re looking for more design or features, use this thing.

Also accredible can support something called certificate expiry date after which the certificate is no longer valid.

Content Drip & Locking

On both platforms you can drip content either by the date student enrolled and when the student started the course.. However there’s a difference. On Teachable drip emails are sent automatically.

Thinkific lacks this feature and you can’t send automated emails to announce the release of new content.

Another key feature with course delivery is your ability to lock content, This is called course compliance. On both Teachable and Thinkfic, restrict student progress unless they complete previous lessons.

Thinkific’s course compliance is more flexible ensuring compliance at the course level.

If you simply keep the quiz completion feature on Teachable, the platform automatically enforces lecture order compliance meaning students need to watch all lessons in their order. This is a problem.

When you set a quiz as compliance in Thinkific, students only need to pass the quiz to unlock the other lessons.’There’s no set order in which they need to go through the lessons.

The video watching compliance is another feature. On thinkific you can set the video watch compliance to a set percentage. It’s set to 90% by default on teachable.

This feature is great to ensure that students go through and consume the entire content.

Course Reporting & Analytics

Teachable has extensive course reporting capabilities that allow you to track Teachable comes with course reporting that can track student video completion rate, their quizzing score and video performance.

There’s a section that they can access on the course dashboard and you can see any report with the dropdown menu.

If you want to see the video completion rates you can choose one report called lecture completion and you see the average completion rates.

If you want to see performance of videos look at the video stats report and see metrics like engagement and play rate for videos.

Thinkific can let you track user progress and performance of videos but the reporting isn’t nearly as good.

View statistics for videos one by one and no one report allows you to see stats for all course videos in just one place.

You can see the progress report at individual user level. No aggregated reports available.


Thinkfic has another feature called groups that lets; you sell courses to organizations.

On the groups feature you can enroll students in bulk at once and organize them, track progress and generate reports. This feature is useful when selling 

To large organizations this feature is available as part of growth package and not on the pro plan.

Teachable doesn’t hae a similar feature. You can create a coupon to enroll several users at one time but that’s as far as it gets.


Course Creation – The Bottom Line

Thinkfiic is a better tool for offering learning and engagement tools. OVerall the groups feature is particularly great if you want to sell to organizations. The assignments, live lessons with Zoom and course compliance tools are all best.

Site Design & Customization

A good website is important to selling courses and both Teachable and Thinkific lets you build a website using the platform.

Here are things that the two platforms differ on. On both platforms you’re going to get free hosting as well as an SSL certificate. The team takes care of site security, backup maintenance and updates. Don’t worry about these. You get a free subdomain on teachable as well. You can use a custom domain too.

You can customize the site text oir change the language. This is another great feature with both platforms.

Website Themes

Thinkific’s site design is present on the site themes feature you see. THinkfic comes with a theme library with three site themes listed on it.

There are multiple style layouts for each theme. There’s a number of theme presets you choose from.

Teachable doesn’t have any site themes feature. There’s a default template and all sites built on teachable use this.

There’s a theme area where you upload the logo and define font styling and color. You change the style of elements like header or footer.

The default theme on teachable is neat, sleek and modern looking. The problem is there aren’t a number of site themes to pick from.

If you’re an advanced user, Thinkific lets you modify the theme code on the backed. You can import custom themes inside thinkific.

Teachable doesn’t allow you to import custom themes. It has a power editor that lets you modify the code of the default theme though.

That’s certainly lacking.

Page BuilderOn both teachable and thinkific there’s a drag and drop builder that can allow you to create homepages and sales pages for courses and for bundles.

Add different elements to pages and use the drag and drop feature to place elements.

Both page builders come with live editors where you see changes made to the website in real time.

There are differences between two builders and the difference is which elements are there for using.

Pn Thinkific the page elements called sections with 20 plus section types you can add with one click.

Whether you want to place a hero section display testimonials show pricing or some text images you can do more on Thinkific.

You can display a countdown timer and add lead capture forms on the page.

The page builder on Teachable is recent.

Thinkfic’s page builder gives you many options to customize pre built sections.

You can change the enroll button’s color with the page builder. This isn’t possible with Teachable where you can only set it for the entire site under theme settings.

Thinkfici comes with better page building capabilities than Teachable.

The one place where Teachable performs differently is when you have multiple sales pages and is useful for creating multiple sales pages devoted to specific campaigns.

Blogging Capability

Teachable lets you create a blog on them. If you add blog posts, you can add images and get them published. A blog built with Teachable isn’t as good as one built on WordPress. There are plenty of things you can’t customize. There are several essentials missing.

White Labeling

Another important key to building a site is white labeling and both platforms let you remove the branding.

Even with custom domain, sign up login and checkout pages are teachable sub domains. You can’t change that.

For creating websites, thinkific seems like a better choice, has a more powerful page-building tool and creates sites with unique designs if you want.

Sales & Marketing

Another important thing to look at is the sales and marketing tools Both teachable and thinkific offer handy sales and marketing tools you can use.

With the tool you bundle one-time or recurring products, sell courses and offer 1 click upsells.

Teachable is better because the checkout process is optimized requiring just one step from the user.

Once the payment is done only then the platform asks people to create the account. This is frictionless. You can add testimonials, money back & the checkout page boosts conversions.

=Thinkifc has the feature called after purchase flows which can let you create unique offers depending on which pricing plan users are on.

Product Pricing Options

Both teachable and thinkific let you sell products on one-time price or a recurring subscription. You can also create a payment plan. Bundle together courses and sell them as one group. You can have  multiple pricing options for course. You can sell the same course for one-time price or change a recurring price.

There are some difference between teachable and thinkific for course pricing. You can price the course in multiple currencies with Teachable while on thinkific there’s support for one course alone.

Thinkific lets you create a trial period and you can charge setup fee from students.

Payment Processing & Payouts

Another cool feature eis payment gateways and opaytous. Both platform offer credit cards via stripe and paypal as a payment processor. On thinkific it’s simple. You get instant payouts.

You’re responsible for paying to authors and affiliates.

Use a custom payment gateway or you use your own Stripe or Paypal account.

Teachable lets you use the gateway on professional or business plans.

EU VAT Handling

On teachable there’s the option of charging eu vat atop your course price. It can add vat rate on the location of the student and send them a bounce with vat details as well.

If you use the teachable gateway they will send the tax to the authorities on their own.

Affiliate Marketing Capabilities

On both platforms you can add affiliates and charge a commission percentage to affiliates. They get a dashboard to share affiliate links and track performance as well.

Teachable has a more powerful program where you can set up custom cookie periods and is not possible within THiniinfic.

Modify Affiliate Cookie Duration in Teachable

Secondly, Teachable lets you use their affiliate features even if your landing pages aren’t built on the platform. To do this on Thinkific, you will have to do some Javascript coding.

The best part about the affiliate system in Teachable though is that it can automatically payout to your affiliates if you use their gateway. This can be a life saver if you have a large number of affiliates on your school.

Finally, the dashboard for affiliates in Teachable looks much cleaner and has better reporting capabilities.

Customer Support

Thinkfic and teachable both have great support options. Thinkfic lacks any real-time supp0rt

On teachable you can get live chat support.

Both Teachable and Thinkific offer 3 paid pricing plans to their users. The first tier is the Basic Plan and it costs $39/month on Teachable and $49/month on Thinkific.

The most popular pricing tier is called Professional Plan on Teachable (costs $119/month) and Pro Plan on Thinkific (costs $99/month).

The highest tier which is more suited for advanced customers costs $499/month on Thinkific and $299/month on Teachable.

Teachable Pricing Plans

Thinkific Pricing Plans

Thinkific vs Teachable – Final Verdict

After Having looked at both platforms Thinkific seems to be better on certain areas. However the pricing too is higher.


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