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Teachable vs. Thrivecart Learn: Which is Better for Online Courses?

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When it comes to creating and selling online courses, there are a few platforms that stand out from the rest. So, Teachable vs. Thrivecart Learn…

In this blog post, we will compare Teachable vs. Thrivecart Learn to help you decide which platform is best for you. Both platforms have their pros and cons, but in my opinion, Thrivecart is the better choice. Let's take a closer look at why that is…

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*This post may contain affiliate links, which means that if you click a link and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. I appreciate your support! You can read my full disclaimer here.

If you're an online course creator, then you know that choosing the right platform is crucial. So, Teachable vs. Thrivecart Learn…which is the best online course platform?

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Intro to Online course platforms

Quick comparison: Teachable vs. Thrivecart Learn

This chart will give you a quick comparison of Teachable vs. Thrivecart Learn.

TeachableThrivecart Learn
PricingFree, $39/month, $119/month, $299/month$495 for lifetime access ($690 if you want the advanced features)
Affiliate programsYes, with limited featuresYes, very powerful
User interfaceGoodGood
Number of coursesUnlimited, except on the free planUnlimited
Hosted videosYesNo
Host PDFs/downloadsYesNo
Design/brandingLimitedVery customizable and branded
IntegrationsYes, but some are limited to the higher pricing plansYes, many on all tiers
Email campaignsYes, basic onesNo
Sales pagesYes, but limited customizabilityYes, fairly customizable
Ease of useFairly easy to useFairly easy to use
Transaction feesFree plan: $1 + 10%; $39/month plan: 5%; $119/month plan: none; $299/month plan: none. Also PayPal/Stripe fees (2.9% + $0.30)No fees at all, except for PayPal/Stripe fees (2.9% + $0.30)
QuizzesYes, basic onesNo, but they say the feature is coming
Student completion certificatesYesNo

What is Teachable?

Teachable is an online course platform that allows you to create, market, and sell your courses. It's a popular choice among online course creators, as it's easy to use and has a lot of features.

What is Thrivecart Learn?

Thrivecart is an all-in-one shopping cart software that allows you to sell your products and services online AND an online course platform.

Unlike Teachable, Thrivecart is not just for courses – you can sell anything with it. This makes it a great choice for online businesses of all types, but especially for course creators.

So, which platform is better? Let's take a look at the features of each one to find out…

Teachable vs. Thrivecart Learn: Which is better for online courses?

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Pricing


Billed monthly, Teachable charges $39/month for its Basic plan and $119/month for its Professional plan.

You can also pay annually for $348 ($29/month) for the Basic plan or $1,188 ($99/month) for the Professional plan.

Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart gives you lifetime access. No monthly or annual fees ever. This makes Thrivecart much cheaper than Teachable after just a few months.

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Thrivecart costs $495 (for lifetime access). Optionally, you can upgrade to Thrivecart Pro for an additional $195. Thrivecart Pro includes:

  • Affiliate program
  • Automatic sales tax calculator
  • Intelligent business projections
  • JV contracts (so you can profit share with someone else)
  • Advanced user management
  • Client usage rights
  • Custom domains

Thrivecart Learn (the course platform part of Thrivecart) is included with either the base plan or the pro plan.

Optionally, you can also purchase lifetime access to Thrivecart Learn Plus for an additional $195 (again, this is for life). Thrivecart Learn Plus includes:

  • Bundles
  • Advanced sequences (make certain events trigger specific actions)
  • Teams
  • Featured content
  • CName
  • Bulk student importing (useful if you're switching from another platform

So, Thrivecart will range in cost from $495 to $885 if you opt in for all the features.

That number may seem high, but keep in mind that you're getting lifetime access. Comparing the price to most other online course platforms, you'll make your money back in less than a year.

The winner?

Thrivecart. With the annual pricing, it'll pay for itself in less than a year.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Affiliate Management


Teachable does not offer an affiliate program at all at the Basic level.

At the Professional level, you do get an affiliate program, but the features are fairly limited and you may have to pay affiliates manually, which can be a big pain.

It's fairly easy to designate existing students as affiliates, but people who aren't already students have to register for an account with your Teachable school before you can make them affiliates. It's cumbersome.

If you use your own payment processor (which is only an option on the Professional plan), then you are in charge of paying your affiliates.

If you use Teachable's payment system, they'll take care of the payments for you:

“If you use Teachable Payments or the Monthly Payment Gateway, and have BackOffice enabled, your affiliates will automatically be paid out by Teachable to the affiliate’s PayPal account. Affiliates must have a valid PayPal account to be paid out by Teachable. Teachable pays school affiliates in USD on the first of every month (or the next business day if the 1st is on a weekend or US holiday) according to our Monthly Payment Gateway schedule. Due to Teachable’s 30-day refund policy, Teachable must hold funds for at least 30 days before releasing them to your affiliates. For example, on March 1st, they would receive a payment for all sales that took place in January. Then, on April 1st, they would be paid for sales made in February, and so on. Affiliate payouts are sent to the PayPal account affiliates have on file in their affiliate dashboard.”

Teachable Support

Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart's affiliate program is powerful. There are a lot of things it can do:

  • You can set affiliate sign up so that they are automatically approved or so that you have to manually approve them
  • You can see exactly how many clicks and how many sales each affiliate has
  • It has an affiliate portal where you can store swipe files, promo graphics, and other information
  • You can add multiple affiliate links to every product
  • Thrivecart will pay your affiliates automatically (or manually, if you want) and you can set a delay period to account for refunds if you want

In the end, both platforms allow you to add affiliates and set commission rates, but Thrivecart makes it easier to manage your affiliates and pay them out. With Teachable, you have to do everything manually, which can be time-consuming.

The winner?

Thrivecart. Its affiliate program is much more powerful.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: User Interface

User Interface is kind of a subjective thing to judge. Personally, I greatly prefer Thrivecart's UI, but I'm sure there are people that love Teachable's. I recommend taking a look at both of them and seeing what you prefer.

The winner?

It's a draw.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Number of Courses


You can have an unlimited number of courses on Teachable (except on the free plan, where you can only have one).

Thrivecart Learn

You can have an unlimited number of courses on Thrivecart Learn.

The winner?

It's a draw.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Videos


Teachable hosts videos for you through Wistia, so you do not need to store them elsewhere (although I recommend having a backup of everything anyway).

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Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart Learn does not host videos for you. So you need to host your videos elsewhere (I use Vimeo for about $7/month and Searchie) and then embed them in the lesson, which is very easy to do. It does add an extra step, but it's pretty painless.

The winner?

I'll give Teachable the slight edge since it does save you one step.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: PDFs/Downloads


Teachable hosts your PDF downloads for you, so students can click right in the lesson to download the file.

It looks like this:

Screenshot of Teachable's PDF hosting

Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart does not host your PDFs for you, however, they have a “download” page block where you can insert the link to the PDF wherever you're hosting it (I use Google Drive) and then the student can click to download it.

It looks like this:

Screenshot of Thrivecart Learn's course platform for hosting documents

So yes, you do have to take the extra step of storing your file on Google Drive or Dropbox, but it's a minor inconvenience.

The winner?

I'll give Teachable the slight edge s

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Design/Branding


Teachable's branding customization is pretty limited.

For example, these are the sitewide colors that you can set. It's pretty limited. And it applies across all courses. So if I had magenta buttons because that was my main course color for my most important course at the time, but later on, I was stuck with that totally off-brand button for my other courses.

Screenshot of Teachable customization options.

Additionally, the fonts on Teachable are extremely limited. The only fonts they offer are:

  1. Proxima Nova
  2. Arial
  3. Lucinda Sans
  4. Palatino
  5. Raleway
  6. Alegreya Sans
  7. Helvetica
  8. Lato
  9. Merriweather
  10. Open Sans
  11. Source Sans Pro

Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart Learn gives you much more control over your branding.

First, it has 3 distinct course layouts: one with a grid layout, one with a sidebar layout, and one with a top menu layout.

Second, it allows you to change the colors and fonts on almost anything in your course. And the selection of fonts is huge–much, much bigger than Teachable's selection which only offers a handful of fonts. Thrivecart offers 150 Google Fonts, which just allows for so much more branding.

Here's an example from one of my courses:

Screenshot of Thrivecart Learn, the best online course platform

In this lesson, I've customized all of the fonts, all of the colors, all of the thumbnails, and the logo. It looks exactly the way I want it to.

The winner?

Definitely Thrivecart. It is much more customizable and branded.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Integrations


Teachable offers some integrations, although some of the important ones only come with their upper level plans (indicated with a * below).

Their integrations are:

  • Zapier*
  • Google Analytics
  • Sumo
  • ConvertKit*
  • Mailchimp*
  • Segment
  • Circle*
  • Facebook pixel*

Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart has a huge number of integrations, including integrations for:

  • Payment processors
  • Notification platforms
  • Fulfillment services
  • Zapier
  • Membership platforms
  • Webinar platforms
  • Autresponders

You can see a full list here. And, if there's something it doesn't integrate with, you can most likely still integrate it using Zapier.

The winner?

Thrivecart. It has more integrations and they aren't limited to higher-priced plans.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Email campaigns


Teachable has some limited email capabilities. You can send messages to all of your students to announce things like a new lesson or new coaching calls. It's very basic, if you want something more advanced, you're going to be relying on your regular email service provider.

Screenshot of Teachable's emails versus Thrivecart's

Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart does not currently have an email program, so you'll need to use ConvertKit or Mailerlite or whatever you're using (I highly recommend ConvertKit).

The winner?


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Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Support

Both Teachable and Thrivecart have fairly good customer support.

The winner?

It's a draw.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Sales pages

Both platforms offer a sales page creator, but Thrivecart's is much more customizable.


Teachable has a sales page editor that allows you to build your page with certain blocks, such as:

  • Banner
  • Image with text
  • Text
  • Text with image grid
  • Course curriculum (a preview of your actual curriculum)
  • Pricing
  • Featured products
  • Email form
  • Button
  • Video
  • Custom HTML

Within those blocks, you can change images, text, and colors.

It's not the most customizable sales page builder out there, but you can create a nice-looking page.

Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart Learn also has a sales/landing page builder with similar elements to that of Teachable. But on Thrivecart you can build not only sales pages, but also checkout pages, tripwires, and upsells.

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The winner?

They both have some decent features, but Thrivecart is the winner because it is more customizable and allows you to create more than just sales pages (also upsell pages, tripwires, and carts).

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Ease of use

I find both Teachable and Thrivecart Learn to be fairly easy to use. Each of them has a fair number of steps you have to complete to get to the finish line, but none are too difficult.

The winner?

This one's a draw.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Transaction fees


Teachable does not charge any fees on its Pro ($119/month) and Business ($299/month) plans, but people on the free plan pay $1 + 10% and people on the $39/month plan pay 5%. That can really add up. Plus, regardless of your platform, you also have to pay your PayPal/Stripe fees (2.9% + $0.30).

Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart does not charge any fees, ever. But of course you'll need to pay the PayPal/Stripe fees (2.9% + $0.30) no matter what platform you're on.

The winner?

Definitely Thrivecart. Those Teachable fees will add up QUICKLY.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Quizzes


Teachable allows you to create a basic quiz. It looks like this:

Screenshot of Teachable Quiz feature in article about teachable vs thrivecart learn.

It should be noted, however, that only users on the higher priced plans get access to graded quizzes.

Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart Learn does not currently offer quizzes, however it is listed as “coming soon” in the lesson builder.

The winner?

Teachable for now, but we'll see what Thrivecart comes out with.

Teachable vs. thrivecart learn: Completion certificates


Teachable offers completion certificates only for the higher priced ($119/month+) plans. There are some customization options for the certificate, if you are on one of the higher plans.

Screenshot of Teachable certificate maker

Thrivecart Learn

Thrivecart Learn does not currently offer completion certificates.

The winner?


So, Teachable vs. Thrivecart Learn, which is better?

In my opinion in the question of Teachable vs. Thrivecart Learn, Thrivecart is a better online course platform than Teachable. If you’re looking for more features, customization options, or power, then Thrivecart is the right choice for you. And if you’re still not sure which platform to choose, don’t worry – I’m happy to answer any questions you may have about either one. Just shoot me a DM on Instagram (@beccakleinco)!

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Hi, I'm Becca

I blog about blogging and teach courses about courses. I fell in love with online business a long time ago and I can't wait to share my best tips and tricks with you.

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