Kajabi and WordPress are two extremely popular platforms people use to create, sell, and market digital products.
Both platforms have been very well-received and give users a ton of tools and options to create a professional-looking site for your online course business.
That being said, the platforms are different, have their own strengths and weaknesses and are oriented at different people.
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|Pricing & Affordability||Tie|
|Marketing & Sales Tools||Kajabi|
|Theme & Customizability||WordPress|
|Course Creation & Student Engagement||Kajabi|
Website Set-Up Comparison
Let’s start our comparison with the web building and website set up tools.
Both Kajabi and WordPress have extremely flexible page builders that can make all kinds of attractive-looking pages.
However, Kajabi is generally much easier to set up, maintain, and integrate with other platforms and extensions.
The main reason why is that when you buy Kajabi, you also get hosting and domains for your website.
That means you don’t have to shop around for a hosting client and you don’t have to pay extra to register a domain name.
Moreover, all Kajabi tools come ready-to-use right out of the box.
You don’t have to install any software packages, and you don’t have to configure tons of plug-ins to work with each other.
Every module is integrated to work smoothly and consistently with one another.
You get access to landing pages, membership sites, and more.
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The platform is designed specifically for courses, but you can use Kajabi to sell other products.
WordPress, on the other hand, is basically just a website building tool.
You have to search for your own hosting and you will have to install themes on your own.
There are 1000’s of awesome WordPress themes to choose from, but most cost at least a few dollars and some up to $1,000.
You also have to take the work to make sure the theme and host work well together.
Then, you will have to get all the necessary plug-ins and extensions and configure them so they don’t interfere with one another and crash the site.
In other words, setting up a WordPress website for your business takes a lot of time and effort on your part.
No doubt you can make some stellar web pages with the platform, but between hosting, themes, and development, it can be a major investment.
Kajabi, on the other hand, is exceedingly simple to set up.
You also get access to tips and resources from professionals about how to use the platform.
WordPress does have educational resources for users, but the platform is so flexible it can be overwhelming and hard to know where to even start.
So overall, we say that Kajabi has the superior set-up process because the platform integrates all modules into one single package.
Pricing Comparison: Kajabi vs WordPress
If you just look at the software packages themselves, WordPress is much cheaper than Kajabi.
In fact, the WordPress platform is completely free to download.
The trick is that there are a lot of extra costs if you want to run a WordPress built site on the web. So ultimately, Kajabi can end up being the cheaper platform option.
Kajabi offers a simple and transparent pricing plan that has 3 tiers:
- Basic: $149/mo
- Growth: $199/mo
- Pro: $399/mo
Kajabi does not have a free plan, but they do offer a 14-day free trial so you can get used to the platform before committing.
Kajabi’s plans are a bit on the expensive side, but you need to consider all the features you are getting.
Kajabi plans scale logically so each tier doesn’t so much give you new functions to use but instead expands on what function you already have.
So even if you get the Basic plan, you still get access to a lot of cool tools, albeit on a smaller scale than the Growth and Pro plans.
Also, since Kajabi is an all-in-one business platform, you won’t have to shell out for extensions, plug-ins, or licensing fees. The entire cost is contained in the subscription price.
The WordPress software is free to download but you have to pay for hosting and a domain name if you want to put it on the web. WordPress hosting + domain can cost anywhere between $5-$199 a month, depending on the hosting provider you pick.
Add-ons and plug-ins can cost anywhere between 0$-$200 for a one time purchase or have a monthly subscription model.
You also need to factor in any web developing costs if you can’t put together the website on your own.
WordPress offers a VIP service that will host and set up your website, but it is very expensive at around $5,000. If you spent the same money on a WordPress as you would with Kajabi, you probably will have fewer features. So ultimately, Kajabi comes out less expensive in terms of overall costs and has a better overall value.
Marketing Tools: Kajabi vs WordPress
When it comes to marketing tools, Kajabi is among the best in the business.
Kajabi’s main draw is its awesome set of marketing tools for creating email campaigns, user lists, sales funnels, and more.
The email marketing tools, in particular, are great and allow for complex automations to create auto-respond sequences.
You can also segment user lists by information and run targeted campaigns.
Users get access to marketing emails and campaign design templates and there are tons of resources on how to effectively manage a marketing campaign.
Kajabi also has “pipelines”, its take on sales funnels.
The platform’s pipeline builder gives you a visual representation of your marketing funnel where you can add and remove landing pages, sales pages, and opt-in forms with the drag-and-drop editor.
The pipeline builder is super intuitive to use and very flexible with design possibilities.
All these options are easy to use and find in the marketing tab.
WordPress, on its own, does not have any business marketing tools.
Remember, WordPress by itself is just a web-building tool. So, if you are going to run business marketing campaigns through a WordPress hosted website, then you will have to get marketing plug-ins and extensions.
WordPress also does not have any built-in payment options, so you need payment processing plug-ins too.
There are a lot of good WordPress marketing plug-ins and it is entirely possible to have a comprehensive marketing suite running out of a WordPress website.
But it takes a lot of work and configuration to sync everything together.
Kajabi streamlines the marketing aspect into a flexible and intuitive package, which is why we think it wins this comparison.
Both Kajabi and WordPress have a theme-based design. Both platforms let you pick a general theme, and modify layouts and elements as you see fit. The main difference is customization options.
Overall, WordPress has a lot more theme and customization options than Kajabi.
This is simply because WordPress itself has a relatively minimal structure so you can fill in the gaps however you want.
Kajabi has taken a different direction for themes in recent years. They used to offer 11 themes but now they are focusing on the Premier Theme.
The Premier Theme is developed to be highly flexible and customizable.
The Premier Theme has 6 layout presets to choose from which you can further customize.
The 11 older themes are still available for Legacy Themes but they will not be receiving more updates, so it’s recommended you go with the Premier Theme.
Also, the platform lets you pick different themes for different products.
You can give evergreen content a different look/layout from membership content, for example. The ability to choose section themes opens up more avenues for customization.
WordPress, on the other hand, is known for its massive library of themes, some free, some costing $1,000s. In that sense, WordPress is highly customizable and you can basically make a business website that looks however you want.
Keep in mind that most of the better themes are not free, so you’ll have to pay for those.
Once you download a theme, you need to install it.
This process can be time-consuming and frustrating because some widgets, extensions, and plug-ins may not be compatible with the theme.
You can normally find workarounds to compatibility issues, but not always. Fortunately, WordPress has a large library of troubleshooting resources if you run into problems installing themes.
Overall, Kajabi has decent flexibility and is much easier to use than WordPress.
Themes and layouts are integrated so you won’t have to worry about making sure extensions and plug-ins work. WordPress themes, on the other hand, can be unruly and difficult to work with.
That being said, WordPress has the largest library of themes to choose from out of all web-building platforms, so it wins out in terms of overall options for themes.
Course Creation & Student Engagement Comparison
Both platforms can be used to host and sell online courses, however, Kajabi is much more online course friendly and has features and tools designed specifically for creating, marketing, and selling online courses and other digital products.
Kajabi’s course creator has a simple logical structure where you can arrange modules and lessons by category.
Creating a course is kind of like creating a blog post. Once you create the structure of a course, you can start putting in online course content with the drag-and-drop editor.
A single course accepts multiple file types including video, audio, text, PDFs, downloads, links, etc. As far as video goes, Kajabi uses Wistia for hosting video content and you get unlimited video hosting, no matter which pricing plan you buy.
You can also enable a comments section under the lesson to generate student discussion
The platform also lets you create quizzes and assessments.
You can choose between multiple-choice, multiple-option, and paragraph-style questions, and you can set the quizzes to be graded automatically.
Lessons can be structured so that students must complete a quiz before moving on to the next section.
You can also add quizzes and assessments to your sales pages as a form of lead capture.
One criticism we have of the quiz tools is the lack of advanced quiz options like randomized tests, answer banks, and timed quizzes.
Kajabi also does not currently support certificates of course completion.
If you want to create, host, and sell courses on WordPress, you’ll have to use an LMS plug-in and any other quiz or assessment plugins.
Some popular LMS plug-ins for WordPress include LearnDash, Zippy Courses, Sensei, and Lifter LMS.
You will also have to find your own online course hosting. Video courses, in particular, have relatively high hosting demands. It just so happens that video-based courses are some of the more popular ones. So logically, acquiring solid video hosting is a must-have.
This comparison again highlights the fundamental differences between the two. Kajabi has everything for your business all under one roof. WordPress is highly flexible but needs to be combined with other elements to work fully. So if your aim is selling courses, then Kajabi is a better choice.
Integrations allow you to connect third-party apps and services to your platform.
Both platforms have a solid list of integrations, for business applications but WordPress ultimately has a superior number and more kinds of integrations available.
Kajabi currently has 10 built-in integrations including popular services such as MailChimp, ConvertKit, Drip, Google Analytics, Aweber, and Clickfunnels, to name a few. Kajabi does not need to go too hard on the integrations because everything you need is already included with the platform. That being said, the integrations exist in case you are already comfortable using some app or service.
There is also the Zapier integration. This integration is interesting because it allows you to make custom integrations with non-native third-party apps.
The Zapier app integration opens up essentially 1,000’s of custom integrations with apps not already built-in to the interface. The integrations are useful because they allow a more flexible approach to running your website.
WordPress is practically one big integration. Every plug-in or extension you use is an integration and the software is designed to be as customizable as possible.
As such, the range of available integrations is virtually infinite, but they may not always play nice with each other. There are tons of stories of WordPress integrations interfering with some other aspects of the website.
Kajabi and WordPress have flexible integrations. However, the sheer available amount of integrations for the WordPress platform is staggering and the possibilities are basically limitless. Even though WordPress integrations are more difficult to set up, they win out over Kajabi for sheer variety and customization options.
Customer Support Comparison
This is an easy match up. Kajabi has customer service, WordPress does not. There are a lot of forums and libraries to figure out how to use WordPress, but there is no one number or email you can contact to troubleshoot problems with your website.
Kajabi stands out for its great customer service. Users get access to 24/7 live chat customer support and you can send support requests via email.
Aside from the responsive and knowledgeable people on the support team, you get access to a ton of educational resources such as Kajabi University.
You can take the Kajabi Hero Challenge and get a free crash course on how to build a website and sell digital products.
Lastly, the devs host regular live training sessions and webinars. So no matter what level of experience you have with web design, marketing, or technical topics, you have resources to turn to.
WordPress is distinguished for its highly active community of users and support forums. Each plug-in tends to have a pretty big list of support documents.
Other than those though, there is no real customer support. You can’t call any people and have them address your issue in real-time. In fact, entire businesses have been established around acting as WordPress support.
So if you need thorough customer support and training, Kajabi is the way to go.
WordPress has a very large community library of knowledgeable people, but no means of getting specialized directed help for specific issues.
Conclusions: Kajabi or WordPress?
At the end of the day, the right platform for your online business comes down to your needs. That being said, Kajabi is probably a better choice of platform for selling online courses.
The main reason why is that everything you need for your business is included in one package, so you don’t have to worry about piecing together disparate themes and plug-ins.
WordPress is a powerful platform and can make some incredible websites if you know what you are doing.
If you don’t have much web-building experience, then it can be very difficult to get started. So when it comes to Kajabi vs WordPress for your course business, our judgment falls on Kajabi.