Teachable has been around since 2014 providing its users with the ability to create and sell learning products at an affordable price.
In 2023, the platform significantly raised its prices, so is Teachable still worth it today? Here’s what we think.
Teachable Review: Quick Overview
What Is Teachable and Who Is It for?
Teachable is primarily a course-building platform with the ability to also set up and sell coaching products and digital downloads.
It describes itself as a “no-code platform” for creators who want to build a more impactful business through selling online learning products.
Teachable Pros and Cons
- Automatic tax handling
- Very beginner-friendly
- Diverse course-building options such as quizzes and completion certificates
- Free plan is good for testing course material
- Integrated payment processor
Is Teachable Affordable?
Founded in 2014, Teachable was always considered a very affordable platform with unlimited features available for around $40/month. However, the platform was purchased by Hotmart in 2020, and in 2023 underwent a complete pricing overhaul which saw subscription prices rise substantially.
Today, there are five plans to choose from:
- Free: Free for life
- Basic: From $59/month
- Pro: From $159/month
- Pro+: From $249/month
- Business: From $665/month
Paying annually gives you a 33% discount on the above prices.
|Teachable Plan||Monthly Fee||Monthly Fee Paid Annually||Annual Fee|
Although the free and Basic plans look appealing, they are extremely limited and also have hefty transaction fees applied to them.
It’s worth noting here that to unlock all the features, you have to be subscribed to the Pro plan upwards. To be able to create unlimited products, you have to subscribe to the Business plan.
Teachable Transaction Fees
Teachable’s transaction fees are applied to every sale you make while on the free or Basic plans. Bear in mind that this is in addition to the processing fees also applied to every sale:
- Free Plan: $1 + 10%
- Basic Plan: 5%
The upshot is that neither the free nor Basic plans are as affordable as they initially seem, particularly if you plan to sell anything. The higher-paid plans cost a huge amount of money for, as you will discover throughout this article, pretty limited features.
In conclusion, is Teachable affordable?
Teachable Review: Key Features
Despite the dated feel and look of the platform, Teachable’s course builder is decent. You get enough tools to help you create diverse and engaging courses and it’s quick and simple to set up your course.
Course content can be dripped or locked until certain criteria have been fulfilled, such as watching a video or completing a quiz.
There’s a newish AI content generator that will automatically fill your lessons with text according to the prompts you provide. This works okay, but you’d be better off coming up with your own content.
Finally, you can set the payment terms for your course (subscription, one-off fee, etc.) to help you maximize revenue.
Teachable claims that you can create coaching products, but this is a bit bold of them because the feature doesn’t really let you do that.
All you can do is create a sales page with an intake form along with pricing plans. There’s no native calendar to manage bookings, nor are there live streaming capabilities–two features that we see as integral to coaching.
While you can use Teachable to allow customers to pay for your coaching sessions, you can’t actually run them unless you make use of third-party apps.
Quizzes are a great way to reinforce learning and to check that your students have taken the material on board before they progress to the next module or lesson.
You get the basic quiz tool with all plans, but if you want graded quizzes, you must be subscribed to at least the Pro plan.
Handily, there’s an AI tool that will automatically generate quiz questions based on the lesson’s content. When testing this, it performed quite well and generated relevant questions that we could use.
Teachable allows student/teacher commenting underneath each lesson. This provides a way for you to communicate with your students without having to email them.
Although it’s definitely not a community feature, it does allow some kind of interaction between your students, albeit on a very basic level.
Teachable:pay is the platform’s integrated payment processor which eliminates the need to use Stripe or PayPal and provides a more streamlined experience for you and your customers.
The tool allows you to receive payments on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis directly to your bank account. It also automatically handles any sales tax remittance, which is highly convenient.
To give more payment options to your customers, the tool also allows you to connect and use Apple and Google pay.
Coupons, Order Bumps, and Upsells
To increase your sales revenue, Teachable provides you with the ability to create order bumps, coupons, and upsells.
The kicker is that these features are not available on all plans. To use coupons and order bumps, you must be subscribed to the Basic plan upwards. For upsells, these are only accessible from the Pro plan upwards.
Web Page Builder
Once you have created a learning product, Teachable will automatically generate sales pages to go with it. These can be edited and essentially act as a simple landing page for your product.
Unfortunately, there is no standalone website-building feature. The only way you can create additional web pages is through the course-building feature. For digital downloads and coaching products, you cannot create any additional pages.
The Basic plan upwards provides a bare-bones emailing feature. The problem is that you can only email existing students.
While this is useful for sending out comms such as when you update a course or add new material, it can’t be used for external marketing, which is a shame.
There is an app available that students can download to access their course material on a mobile device or tablet. This is really useful because it can be used offline and allows students to complete their work just about anywhere after they have initially downloaded the content.
The big problem with the app is that it’s only available on Apple iOS. Why they decided not to include an app for Android is anyone’s guess.
Teachable Review: Customer Support
Email support is provided across the board, but if you want to enjoy live chat support, you will need to be subscribed to the Pro plan upwards. Priority support is only available to Business plan holders.
Live support is limited to EST office hours, Monday to Friday, so if you live outside the US, you may never get to experience it.
Contacting support was somewhat arduous with long wait times and lacklustre responses. It feels like the support agents aren’t particularly interested in your problem, which is never a good experience.
What We Like About Teachable
Teachable Free Plan
We’ll never knock a free plan, even one as limited as Teachable’s. It does indeed have some serious limitations.
You’re only allowed a maximum of ten students, and you can only create one of each type of product. There are also those high transaction fees to deal with.
Why do we like it? Many other (better) platforms such as Kajabi don’t provide a free plan. Therefore, you don’t have much time to get your course up and running before you have to start paying.
Teachable’s free plan serves as a good base to build and test out your course material before committing to a paid platform. Its course-building tools will give you a good feel for how to structure your course, how it looks, and what needs to be improved.
Ten students certainly aren’t enough to make any money, but it is enough to thoroughly test your course material and most importantly, gain feedback on it.
Teachable isn’t a complicated platform to learn. This is due, in part, to its limited features, but it has also provided a user-friendly interface and beginner-friendly tools.
Navigating the platform is easy, and thanks to the setup wizard, newbies are prompted and guided on what to do and how to do it.
Even technophobes will be able to get the hang of course creation pretty quickly and thanks to the platform’s simplicity, there aren’t many ways you can go wrong.
Automatic Tax Handling
Unless you’re a financial expert, sales tax can be a real conundrum, especially if you’re dealing with taxes applied to countries other than your own.
Teachable has made this part of online selling a breeze by automatically calculating and remitting UK and EU VAT and US sales taxes.
This saves you the headache of trying to work it all out yourself and significantly reduces the likelihood of making an error in the process.
Surprisingly, this feature is available on all Teachable plans, so it gets a huge thumbs up in this department.
Versatile Course Options
Despite having limited features overall, Teachable’s course-building tool is actually decent and provides you with a lot of options to make your course material diverse and engaging.
From adding video and audio to creating quizzes and assessments, the platform gives you everything you need to create a full learning experience.
Furthermore, you get lots of other features such as dripping content, student comments, completion certificates, and more. Coupled with the beginner-friendly interface, it’s actually quite fun to create courses on Teachable.
What We Dislike About Teachable
Zero Marketing Features
This is Teachable’s biggest downfall.
Although it claims to include everything you need to successfully sell your courses, this could not be further from the truth. Sure, it has coupons, upsells, and basic sales pages, but it doesn’t provide a way for you to promote them.
There’s no email marketing feature although Teachable tries to convince you there is. The reality is that you can only email existing students – you can’t send any emails externally, which is no good if you’re trying to attract new customers.
There’s also no native funnel builder or online form creator, and you can’t build a standalone website or blog.
If you want all this, you’re going to have to use a third-party app, which is likely to cost more on top of your already high subscription fee.
High Transaction Fees
We have to mention the transaction fees again because they are the highest around. In fact, most other platforms don’t charge anything beyond the usual processing fees.
The $1 + 10% transaction fee applied to the free plan makes selling anything while on it pointless, especially since you can only sell to ten students anyway.
The 5% fee on the Basic plan is also sky-high. Imagine if you sold $50,000 worth of courses: $5,000 of that will go straight to Teachable in transaction fees, and that’s before you’ve paid any processing fees (2.9% + 30¢ for US sales and 3.9% + 30¢ for international sales).
It’s almost as if they don’t want you on the free or Basic plans and are using these transaction fees as a way of getting you to upgrade your plan.
Too Basic for the Price
Let’s say you wanted to access all of the features on Teachable. To do this, you would need to pay for at least the Pro plan which costs from $159/month.
That’s a lot of money for what is essentially just a course-building tool.
When compared with Kajabi (Basic plan at $159/month), you can pay the same but get access to so many additional features such as communities, podcasts, live-streaming, sales funnels, email marketing, landing pages, and more.
If Teachable wants to be charging premium prices, it needs to provide a premium platform with premium features, and unfortunately, what it does provide doesn’t in any way justify the price.
Although Teachable is very easy and beginner-friendly to use, the interface isn’t much to get excited about. It’s very stark and looks unattractive compared with other platforms like Kajabi or GoHighLevel.
Drag-and-drop is the modern method of choice for page building, but Teachable doesn’t use this making its building tools feel dated.
The lack of templates also adds to this. You can only choose from two-course layouts, and there is one single web page layout. This means it’s very hard to get a modern, unique look to your sales pages and courses. Again, disappointing for a platform that charges so much.
Teachable vs Competitors
|Platform||Monthly Price||Free Plan?||Transaction Fees?||Marketing Tools?||Community Feature?|
|Teachable||$59 – $665||Yes||Yes||No||No|
|Kajabi||$149 – $399||No||0%||Yes||Yes|
|Thinkific||$49 – $199||Yes||0%||Website builder only||Yes|
|LearnWorlds||$29 – $299||No||0%||Yes||No|
|Systeme.io||$27 – $97||Yes||0%||Yes||Yes|
|Podia||$39 – $89||Yes||Yes||No||Yes|
As you can see, Teachable charges the highest prices by quite some stretch. The only platform to come close is Kajabi; however, you get a lot more for your money with best-in-class features and tools.
And, you will also notice that Teachable is the only platform other than Podia to inflict transaction charges on its subscribers.
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Teachable Review: Our Verdict
Is Teachable worth it?
Well, no, not really.
If it charged fair prices, then we’d say it’s a decent starter platform with user-friendly features. However, we don’t understand why anyone would pay such huge sums when they can get a much better deal elsewhere.
To have the most expensive top-tier fee but not include any marketing, community, or true coaching features defies belief.
If you do have deep pockets and want the best of the best, don’t go to Teachable, head to Kajabi instead. If you want a cheap solution that allows you to actually sell courses and still make money then choose Systeme.io.
Frequently Asked Questions
When compared with similar platforms, Teachable is not worth it. The amount it charges for its plans is far too high for the number of features it provides in return. You will get a much better deal by using Kajabi, Systeme.io, or Thinkific.
Teachable is good for course building. It has a decent course creation tool that lets you add engaging elements such as quizzes. However, the platform lacks features for marketing, community building, and live coaching.
Teachable is not rated well on TrustPilot. Its current score is 2.5. SupplyGem rates it 7.9/10. Customers say the platform does not offer good value for money and is priced too highly for the features you get.
Teachable is a legit course-building platform and has been around since 2014.
Teachable is expensive. Compared with similar platforms, it has some of the highest fees for its paid plans. Although there is a free plan and a Basic plan, the platform imposes high transaction fees and severely limits features.
Teachable is not better than Kajabi. Kajabi has a top-rated comprehensive range of features that makes Teachable look extremely limited in comparison. Both platforms have premium pricing, but Kajabi provides true value for money and is overall more affordable.
Teachable is not better than Thinkific. The platforms are similar, but Thinkific is much more affordable than Teachable and contains many features that Teachable lacks including communities, live streaming, course templates, and more.
Neither Teachable nor Podia is better. Teachable has an integrated payment processor while Podia provides communities. Both platforms levy a transaction fee on their free plans and have very limited marketing tools.
However, when comparing prices, Podia is more affordable.
Teachable is not better than Udemy; it’s different. Udemy is a marketplace where you can host and sell your courses, whereas Teachable is a course-building platform with more customization features.