10 Paid and Free Teachable Alternatives Every Course Creator Should Consider
The e-learning market is bigger than ever, and its growth shows no signs of slowing down.
There has never been a better time for content providers to create and market online courses because of the migration of in-person classes to online and the easier accessibility of knowledge from experts in almost every sector.
For creators who wish to share what they love online, there are numerous methods at their disposal. Teachable, a platform that enables producers to sell online courses and coaching is one of the most well-liked choices.
In this guide, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of Teachable for course developers and online creators, plus ten Teachable alternatives to help you start selling your work.
Note: All pricing is accurate at the time of writing, but this is subject to change over time.
Teachable pros and cons
Teachable is a platform dedicated to selling online courses and coaching. Creators can sell ebooks and services as course add-ons and set up workshops and conferences.
The biggest benefit of using Teachable is how easy it is to get started with course creation on the free plan. You can set up your first course without coding knowledge, and the platform takes care of all of the technical pieces.
That said, Teachable is very limited in the product types and customization options it offers creators.
Most of the successful course creators on Teachable use third-party tools for email marketing, landing page builders, building a community, or selling memberships. You also can’t sell standalone digital products with Teachable.
Teachable makes it easy to move swiftly from conception to implementation. It's really simple to set up and doesn't call for any advanced programming knowledge to set up your course content. Additionally, it offers payment processing that you can set up in a variety of ways to package your courses or provide ongoing access for a monthly price.
Teachable also has an intriguing price structure that enables authors to launch for free. Build your online course and enroll students, and you only pay when your course sells. There are fees with each transaction that are based on a flat fee and a percentage of your course price. This is convenient if you’re experimenting, but it can start to feel steep once your course is selling well.
Teachable has the extra distinctive quality of being designed to complement more formal education and training. They have resources to verify that members comply with standards, such as compliance inspections to confirm that students have finished the necessary portions of the courses. Additionally, they provide certificates of completion.
The three most common complaints about Teachable are:
1. No community options
Course creators on Teachable either start a Facebook Group (which is noisy, distracting, and has a habit of cheapening the value of your online course offering) or go without a community altogether (which means many people won’t stick with their courses).
Without any kind of community feature, members miss the opportunity to take the course with other people. What does a community add to an online course? It turns out, a lot. For any given student, fellow classmates keep them engaged and focused via sharing stories, experiences, inspiration, challenges, and wins.
This has never been more true than it is now as tens of thousands of people launch new online courses every week. It is this living, breathing, an immensely dynamic asset that makes the difference between a successful online course and one that is "dead on arrival.”
2. Missing apps
For Teachable, a native mobile app experience was not the priority. It’s been built well for the web and has a very light app, but it’s only available on iOS and both course creators and learners find it glitchy. The fact that Android users don’t have an app at all means that 2.5 billion people can't access your course from their devices.
3. Limited delivery options & high pricing
With so many different ways to deliver a course, from live streaming a cohort-based course to running interactive, virtual sessions, Teachable is limited in terms of what you can actually do with it. There’s no native live streaming for example. It works best for an old-school asynchronous course that you don’t need much flexibility from.
Teachable’s pricing and transaction fees can also get complicated.
Free plan: ($1 + 10% of every sale transaction fee on paid products)
Basic: $29/month (5% transaction fee)
On Teachable’s Basic plan, transaction fees would add an additional $100+ in expenses per month for the average creator.
Overall, Teachable may not be the right fit for you if you want to:
Avoid transaction fees without having to pay $99/month.
Do more than just sell courses and coaching, including building a community or building out a custom website.
Pensil is an integrable and easy-to-use community platform designed for creators who want to gather their community members around their content, engage them in discussions and turn them into paying members. In addition to discussions, members can communicate via direct messaging, too.
With Pensil, creators have a chance to build different types of online communities. These include membership, course, product, and coaching communities. The platform also allows for newsletter and podcast communities.
When it comes to discussions, it is possible to organize them in public or private space groups, depending on their nature.
Integration with your own website Do you already have a website? If so, you’ll find it convenient to simply integrate your community into your existing site. The Pensil platform makes this possible.
Integration with online course platforms Are you using online course platforms such as Kajabi or Teachable? Pensil makes it possible to share your content created on other community platforms with your Pensil community. And only with a single sign-on.
Integration with multiple tools Besides integration with web pages and different community platforms, Pensil allows you to integrate multiple handy tools with your community through a single sign-on, and track important analytics, such as the most active members, number of new members, trends, and many more.
Connect with your members through live streams, chats, and events Pensil allows you to host live streams and reach hundreds of coaching clients at once. Furthermore, you can invite a co-host, or your members to join you in live group coaching, lessons, and discussions.
Multiple monetization options Different types of online communities require different subscriptions. With Pensil, you can set up monthly, quarterly, and yearly payments, depending on the content you are creating and selling.
14-day free trial
Start :$45/month with a custom domain, unlimited members, payment gateway, and more
Grow : $85/month with everything in start + 1000 hrs live sessions, 500 GB Storage, and more
Enterprise : For large businesses or those in regulated industries. everything in grow + Unlimited live sessions, 5 TB Storage, and more
Podia scores high for its creator-friendly website builder and embeddable buy button. With the latter, customers can buy your courses or memberships directly from your external sites without ever having to leave the page.
Website builder: Drag and drop to create a beautiful and functional website with zero coding involved
Communities: Podia offers a built-in online community for all plans
Pricing: You can immediately start selling your content on Podia for free
Embeddable buy button: Sell your content on any non-Podia website without requiring visitors to leave the site
Users on free plan have to pay 8% transaction fee (excluding fees from payment processors)
Free: $0 for 8% fees, full website, full community, email marketing, and more
Mover: $39/month for everything in Free + zero transaction fee, unlimited downloads, and more
Shaker: $89/month for everything in Mover + affiliates, unlimited webinars, and more
Earthquaker: $199/month for everything in Shaker + monthly creator call, priority support, and more
Kajabi understands not all creators are marketers, so it’s created a built-in marketing suite to help you promote your business. Stand-outs include premade playbooks for your funnels and built-in email marketing tools.
Transaction fees: Kajabi doesn’t take a cut from your revenue
Pipelines: Kajabi offers ready-to-use playbooks (including pre-written copy developed from high sales-converting funnels) for many types of funnels, like product launches, coaching campaigns, and webinars
Email tools: Kajabi boasts many built-in email marketing tools (e.g., validate your email subject line to promote deliverability, filter out high-risk contacts during import)
No free plan
One of the most expensive online course platforms in the market
Many themes look basic
Restrictive landing page builder that makes it difficult to customize to fit your brand
14-day free trial
Basic: $149/month for 10,000 contacts, ready-to-use templates, unlimited landing pages, and more
Growth: $199/month for 25,000 contacts, everything else in Basic + Kajabi branding removal, and more
Pro: $399/month for 100,000 contacts, everything else in Growth + code editor, and more
If complex tech makes you nervous, look no further.
Teachery is an easy-to-use course platform made for complete beginners who care about simplicity. It equips you with the essentials to get your business rolling. Highlights include a superior customer service and intuitive interface.
This exceptional plugin sets up your course for you, saving you the hassle of clicking through dozens of buttons. You can also customize just about anything on your site, thanks to its massive integration library.
Add-ons: LearnDash’s impressive add-on library offers literally everything (e.g., integrity plugin to protect your content from spam, challenge exams to let members skip ahead a module or course)
Customization: You can customize your site down to the last detail with its sleek integrations with Elementor and Divi
OnBoarding Wizard: Install LearnDash with your plugins and settings within minutes
No free plan
Lack of free trial, though there is a 15-day money-back guarantee if you change your mind
Pricing is based annually, not monthly
Website may get bloated since you need to integrate LearnDash with many plugins to get the most out of it
Basic: $159/year for 1 site license, unlimited course and users, and more
Plus: $189/year for everything in Basic + 10 site licenses and more
Pro: $329/year for everything in Plus + 25 site licenses and more
Which Teachable alternatives will you try today?
Each and every one of these solutions are viable Teachable alternatives. Your choice largely comes down to your budget and the number of features you want access to. If you're struggling to make a decision, we encourage you to make the most of solutions that come with free trials. That way, you can get to grips with the software before parting with your precious cash.
Have you got any experience with the above Teachable alternatives? If so, we'd love to hear your thoughts and opinions in the comments box below!
Interested in exploring our product and services on a demo, getting a quote or do you just want to send an email?