Thinkific is a widely recognized e-learning platform, boasting over 50,000 course creators and serving more than 25 million students. Developed by Thinkific Labs Inc., this platform is designed to assist creators in building and selling online courses. Its target users range from individual educators and entrepreneurs to small businesses and large enterprises.
Key Features and Functionalities
Thinkific offers a plethora of features that make it a robust and versatile platform for online course creation:
- Course Creation Tools: Thinkific provides a user-friendly drag-and-drop builder, allowing creators to design engaging and visually appealing courses. It also offers a variety of pre-designed themes and the ability to add diverse content types, such as text, images, and videos.
- Marketing and Sales Integrations: Thinkific integrates with a wide range of marketing and sales tools, making it easier for creators to promote their courses and track their performance.
- Customer Support: Thinkific prides itself on its responsive and friendly customer support, ready to assist users with any issues or queries.
Compared to other e-learning platforms, Thinkific stands out with its user-friendly interface and comprehensive feature set, although some users have noted that its community feature could use improvements.
Thinkific’s user interface is intuitive and easy to navigate, even for those without a technical background. The platform guides users through the setup process with a handy ‘Get Started’ checklist, making the course creation process straightforward and hassle-free.
Performance and Reliability
In terms of performance and reliability, Thinkific generally runs smoothly without frequent crashes. However, some users have reported issues with the community feature, such as lack of notifications for new posts and inability to edit or delete posts.
Pricing and Value
Thinkific offers a tiered pricing structure to cater to different needs and budgets. Here’s a detailed breakdown of their pricing plans:
|Price per Month
|3 Courses, Quizzes & Surveys, Content Hosting
|Unlimited courses, Coupons, Email students, Drip (scheduled) content
|2 Site admin accounts, 5 Course admins/authors, Private & hidden courses, Advanced course pricing options
|5 Site admin accounts, 15 Group Analysts, 50 Course admins/authors, Single sign-on (SSO), Onboarding package
The Free plan is a great starting point for beginners or those who want to test out the platform. The Basic plan offers more flexibility and additional features like email marketing and drip content.
The Pro plan is Thinkific’s most popular option, offering advanced features like private and hidden courses, membership and bundle courses, and advanced course pricing options.
The Premier plan is designed for larger businesses or institutions, offering the highest level of support and the most comprehensive features, including single sign-on and an onboarding package.
Considering the range of features and functionalities each plan offers, Thinkific provides good value for its price.
Thinkific Course Builder: Creating an Online Course
Creating an online course with Thinkific is a straightforward and intuitive process, thanks to its user-friendly Course Builder. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to create your first course:
1. Build Your First Course
Upon signing up, you’ll find a draft course titled ‘Your First Course’ waiting for you in the ‘Courses’ page. This draft serves as a template to help you get started with your course creation.
2. Course Content
The course content is divided into Chapters and Lessons. To start creating, simply click ‘Add Lesson’ and choose a content type. You can add a variety of content types, including text, video, quiz, survey, and more.
3. Course Player Customization
Thinkific allows you to customize the Course Player, which is the view your students will see. You can adjust the color scheme, text, and layout to match your brand.
4. Assignments and Progress Tracking
With Thinkific, you can set assignments, quizzes, and surveys for your students. Students can submit their completed work directly on the platform, allowing you to keep all course documents in one place. You can also track your students’ progress and performance.
5. Preview Your Course
Before publishing, you can preview your course to see it from a student’s perspective. This helps ensure that your course is clear and user-friendly.
The Thinkific Course Builder is designed to make the course creation process as easy and efficient as possible. Whether you’re a seasoned course creator or a complete novice, you’ll find the Course Builder’s features and functionalities helpful and easy to use.
Pros and Cons
- Platform supports live video, assignments, communities, and quizzes.
- Integration wide range of industry tools
- Allows users to track a range of metrics and KPIs
- Protects content and client data with encryption and 24/7 monitoring
- Teach live lessons, on-demand or ‘blended’ lessons
- Excellent customer service
- The App Developer Partnership program offers financial rewards
- Provides full access to HTML and CSS
- Supports over 30 languages
- No transaction charges
- Extensive 30-day free trial program
- Provides custom domain
- No integrated marketing tools – you’ll need to use third party solutions
- Removing custom branding is only available on the Pro + Growth package
- Single sign-on (SSO) is only on the highest tiers
- Doesn’t handle EU VAT
- Offers only phone support–no chat options
Summary and Rating
In conclusion, Thinkific is a robust and user-friendly platform for creating and selling online courses. Despite some minor drawbacks with its community feature, it offers a comprehensive set of tools and features that make it a strong contender in the e-learning market. Based on its features, performance, and value for money, I would rate Thinkific 4.5 out of 5.