Digital education is everywhere right now, and if you or your business have got something to share with the world, there's never been a better time to put a course together and spread your knowledge to those who want to hear it. Of course, there are many opportunities to monetise your efforts along the way.
But let's not get ahead of ourselves.
Creating a fully functional, info-rich, and profitable online course is no easy feat. It takes a lot of hard work, dedication, and the right tools for the job.
And that's the secret.
With the right tools to build your course, you can take a lot of the hard graft out of your course-building ventures and instead focus on doing what you and your business do best.
Let's get right into it.
Obby's top 13 best online course creation tools are:
- Mighty Networks
- Learn Dash
- Academy of Mine
Just a head's up, all prices listed below were correct at the time of writing (08/10/2022) and are subject to change! All prices are also when you pay for an annual subscription. Monthly plans may vary.
Teachable is clearly the obvious choice when creating your own online courses.
The platform, founded in 2013, has enjoyed phenomenal success, housing over 10 million students worldwide across 125,000 courses (as of 2018), and its course creators have generated over $1 billion in revenue.
Teachable is a fantastic tool for planning, building, and hosting your courses, even if you plan to sell them off-site to your existing audience.
And that's really the core of Teachable. It's quick and easy. If you're a beginner at creating online courses, then this is a great place to start.
| Price: From $0 to $249 per month
Free plan: ✓ Trial length: 14 days
Support: 24/7 (Email, live chat, community forums)
|Our best all round online course creation tool
|+ Plenty of direct integrations
+ Incredibly user-friendly
+ Access to the teachable:IQ community
|- Can experience downtime
- Higher tier plans are expensive
|Mailchimp, ConvertKit, Google Analytics, Zapier.
Teachable offers what is essentially a step-by-step wizard for outlining your course, which you then just need to fill with content (text, audio, and video formats are supported). When your course is ready, you can simply publish and share your sales link to start selling it.
Many other features also help get your project off the ground. This includes making gorgeous landing pages in just a few clicks, a range of secure, supported payment options, your own domain for a website (or an internal Teachable-based one), and even the ability to host live workshops with your students via webinars.
Teachable’s online course creation tools are just so streamlined, user-friendly, and actionable. Everything is customisable to your liking, and the knowledge base and friendly community are always on-hand if you need any help.
With three variable pricing plans that scale with your course content business and regular updates, Teachable will never be a bad choice for hosting your online course content.
- Allows direct native integrations to platforms like Mailchimp, ConvertKit, Google Analytics, Zapier, and more
- Access to the teachable:IQ community forums for endless support and live coaching classes hosted three times a week
- The platform accepts over 130 currencies and all major payment platforms
- There are reports the site can sometimes experience downtime during heavy traffic periods, such as Black Friday
- Considered a little pricier compared with other options.
- Teachable doesn't currently support SCORM or xAPI, nor imports from Articulate or Adobe Captivate.
If you're on the hunt for one of the best online course creation tools you can trust to help you deliver outstanding course content, maximise your sales opportunities, and grow your online business, Thinkific may be ideal.
Right off the bat, this is the platform used by the big league companies of the world, including the likes of Shopify, Hootsuite, CFI, Later, Samsung, and so many more. With over 16 million students covering 164 countries and over $200 million in sales, this is not a course creation platform your business can afford to miss.
What's more, Thinkific makes it easy.
| Price: From $0 to $399 per month
Free plan: ✓ Trial length: 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
Support: 24/7 (Help centre, Facebook, email, live chat, phone)
|Users that want complete control over their brand and business
|+ Amazing support
+ Good customisation
+ Upload video and documents in communities
|- Can be difficult to navigate
- Email features are limited
|Zapier, Zoom, Shopify, Mailchimp
Getting started on the free account, you can choose from various templates that are ready to use straight away, or you can edit and customise them to fit your branding. Every aspect of the templates can be edited how you want, giving you complete freedom with your looks.
From here, it's plain sailing.
The course builder uses an effortless drag-and-drop system that supports text, video, and audio content formats. Within this builder, there's everything you can imagine to help make your course as interactive as possible. This includes;
- Live lesson functionality
- Quizzes and forms
- Pass and fail quizzes
- Student surveys
- Voiceover PowerPoint Presentations
- Drip scheduled content
- Certifications and achievements
- Community forum space for your students
- Coupons for offering discounts
All the tools you could ever need to make your course exactly how you want it to be.
As a business, you can also tweak Thinkific in any number of ways. Want a knowledge base for your SaaS? Need to automate your emails? Sharing knowledge with your audience, clients, or customers of any kind?
Thinkific can do it all.
To cut a long story short, if you have knowledge or information of any kind, Thinkific has tools to help you communicate it in the best possible way.
- Has an extensive range of automated admin features, such as enrollment tracking, email marketing, payment emails and receipts, and customer service management tools
- Allows you to create free, paid, or time-limited courses, workshops and host live events
- Thinkific never holds your funds. They'll pay any sales profit directly into your account using Stripe.
- The website builder feels a little clunky
- The community is a little inactive
- There are too few integrations, although these can be overcome with services like Zapier
Marketed as an all-in-one online course platform, a Swiss army knife in the online course creation tools world, the success of Kajabi is nothing short of wild.
Since its founding in 2010, Kajabi and its base of course creators have generated over $3.9 billion in course sales across 100,000 businesses, with over 300,000 courses available.
But Kajabi isn't just a course creation tool.
It's a content management powerhouse.
Using the drag-and-drop builder, your business can create everything from online courses and coaching programs to membership programs, podcasts, and so much more. Everything your customers and audience could ever need to get the valuable knowledge you have to offer.
| Price: From $119 to $319 per month
Free plan: No Trial length: 14 days + 30 day money back guarantee
Support: 24/7 (Help centre, Facebook, email, live chat, phone)
|Users that want extensive marketing and crm features
|+ Easy onboarding
+ Marketing features
+ Stunning templates/themes
|- Slow customer service response
- limited community features
|Zapier, Mailchimp, ConvertKit
While the wizard is just as feature-rich as the other best online course platforms, what helps Kajabi to stand out is its focus on growth and business scaling. You'll find a range of integrated campaign management features to help you sell your course in the best possible way.
That includes email marketing setups, funnel management, a landing page creation suite, integrated CRM reporting, and a ton of analytics and data reporting. You can even create a dedicated, ready-to-go mobile app for people to use with no development or coding required.
Bringing everything together, you have a complete toolbox for creating courses from scratch and making money from them in the most effective way.
- Offers an extensive range of selling tools, including coupons, discounts, subscriptions, and free trials
- The built-in themes are stunning and customisable
- This platform is straightforward for anyone to learn
- The email marketing tools could be improved
- Pricing is more expensive than other tools
- There are no live video conferencing features supported for lessons
Trial Period: 14 days
Support: 24/7 (email, live chat, learning centre)
- Basic: $119 per month
- Growth: $159 per month
- Pro: $319 per month
Mighty Networks is a comprehensive course builder platform, but while there are a lot of features, there are two main considerations that cement Mighty Networks as one of the best online course creation tools.
Brace yourself, they're nothing short of game-changing.
Community and accessibility.
As the name suggests, MN is about creating communities and networks around your business and the value you provide. Got a podcast? Coaching school? Training program? Blog? Masterclass?
Any kind of content that brings value to its audience and has more than one person can use MN to bring students together into a highly interactive learning environment. This is HUGE for engagement and fast tracks your ability to create superfans of your movement.
| Price: From $33 per month
Free plan: No Trial length: 14 days
Support: Mon - Fri 6am - 6pm via support tickets
|Course creators and YouTubers that want to build a community platform
|+ Great community management features
+ Enrol unlimited students
+ Worldwide currency support
|- No PayPal
- No Quizes or certificates
|Zapier, GA, Slack, Quaderno
But what about the second aspect? Accessibility?
Quite simply, MN allows you to export everything you create (your community, your course, your content, and your brand) to all platforms. That's iOS, Android, and web-based devices. Whatever platform your users are on, you can reach them.
This is another bold step for building your communities because it doesn't matter where you are or what someone wants, they can always get in touch.
Mighty Networks Pros
- Every plan allows you to enrol unlimited students, hosts and admins in your community space
- Tons of personalised tools for creating your space, your way, including custom domains, landing pages, migration specialists, and custom forums with topics.
- Supports hundreds of worldwide currencies and payment platforms, as well as supporting one-off charges, subscription packages, and memberships to your networks
Mighty Networks Cons
- Ah! MN doesn't support PayPal payments! We hope this changes soon!
- The course content creator feels limited compared with other platforms, lacking features like quizzes and certificates.
- Doesn't support video hosting and live video workshops or webinars; another change we hope to see in the future
Mighty Networks Pricing
- Community: $33 per month
- Business: $99 per month
- Mighty Pro: Available upon request only
In a world of feature-rich content creation tools that house everything, offer all the features under the sun, and cost a pretty penny, for someone starting out, course creation can feel like a lot.
Sometimes, you might just want something plain and simple. No bells and whistles.
LearnWorlds, founded in 2014, is designed for small enterprises, medium businesses, and individuals, with a heavy focus on creating highly polished learning experiences that your audience will love.
| Price: From $24 per month
Free plan: No Trial length: 30 days
Support: 24/7 (email, phone, support ticket, social media)
|Course creators and YouTubers that want to build a community platform
|+ Rated 5 stars on all review platforms
+ Impressive 30+ integrations
+ Create infinate courses on any plan
|- Poor checkout process
- Cluttered interface
|Zapier, GA, Zoom, Active Campaign and many more
As a business, you can create easily-accessible interactive videos, ebooks, assessments, certification programs, surveys, SCORMs, and so much more. There are hundreds of beautiful themes to choose from to get started, and the platform supports any kind of payment plan you want to offer.
SEO-optimised, fully brandable, fast, easy to use, and with a range of basic yet impactful sales tools, like marketing funnels and coupon promotions, LearnWorlds is a course creation platform that does exactly what it says on the tin.
- This is a multi-award-winning platform, rated five stars on platforms like Capterra, G2, Trustpilot, and more.
- Natively integrates with 30+ major marketing platforms and allows access to a public API for a fully customisable experience
- Every tier allows you to create an infinite number of courses!
- The accessibility features feel limited, and there are many reports of it even being glitchy at times.
- The checkout process is not as streamlined or optimised as other platforms
- The user interface is a little messy and cluttered
- Starter: $24 per month
- Pro Trainer: $79 per month
- Learning Centre: $249 per month
- High Volume & Corporate: Available upon request
Sure, there are a lot of premium-priced course creation tools around, but what if you're looking for an affordable option that still has access to all those essential features and building options?
Podia is the answer.
With an incredibly affordable pricing structure, it's no wonder the platform is hosting over 12,700 websites and has over 20,000 course sellers.
But does it hold up?
In short, yes. It's a fantastic tool. It’s one of the best online course creation tools. It offers a full website builder to host your entire business, a full course building suite, unlimited courses, downloads, and coaching solutions on all premium plans.
| Price: From free to $166 per month
Free plan: Yes Trial length: Unlimited on free
Support: 24/7 (email, live chat, Facebook, Twitter)
|Users that want to sell digital products like eBooks
|+ Easy to use UI
+ Sell digital products
+ Fast customer support
|- Basic analytics
- Lack of marketing tools
|Zapier, Mailchimp, PayPal, Drip, Calendly
You can even create and sell digital products like eBooks and bundle packs and host and sell tickets to webinars hosted on Zoom, YouTube, or your preferred platform. Podia lets you get started for free (with an 8% transaction fee on all sales) and then scales with your business!
It's easy, affordable, and powerful. What more could you ask for?
- The UI is amazing and so easy to pick up and start using, even as a beginner
- The customer team is amazing, replying and resolving issues so quickly
- You can host, market, and sell all your digital products and services in one place
- The analytics and insights feature doesn't provide much detail
- Not a lot of technical support
- Few marketing and selling tools are available
- Free: $0 per month
- Mover: $33 per month
- Shaker: $75 per month
- Earthquaker: $166 per month
7. Learn Dash
Learn Dash is a course building, marketing, and selling management system, much like the other platforms on this list, but it's designed for WordPress users. Trusted by huge names like Yoast, Tony Robbins, Keap, and Digital Marketer, this is a wildly customisable plugin with a ton of functionality.
That's the attractive element of Learn Dash.
The list of features is seemingly endless, yet you can make fully functional courses in only a few minutes using the drag-and-drop builder. And this is all directly within your WordPress dashboard as you would use any other WordPress plugin.
It's quite something when you really think about it.
| Price: From $199 to $799 per month
Free plan: No Trial length: None
Support: Mon - Fri 7AM - 4PM EST via support ticket
|Users that want to integrate with an existing Wordpress website
|+ Drag and drop for Wordpress
+ A range of langauges are available
+ Well optimised for integrations
|-Can only be monetised with WooCommerce
- Only for Wordpress users
|Fully customisable with additional wordpress plugins
As you'd expect, you can upload pretty much any content format you want and make highly interactive and engaging ways of learning, such as quizzes and assignments. Even when making quizzes, there are an utterly ridiculous number of ways to customise them.
But, don't worry. This isn't as time-consuming as you may think. You can set, upload, or save your designs as templates that you can re-upload time and time again.
Altogether, it's easy to see why Learn Dash is so popular and how it's generated millions in course and content sales since its conception.
Learn Dash Pros
- Building courses within your WordPress website is effortless using drag-and-drop functionality
- The program is highly optimised for different languages, opening the market to users from around the world
- The plugin is incredibly well optimised for integrations through third parties and Zapier
Learn Dash Cons
- You can only monetise your courses with other integrated plugins, like Woocommerce
- There's no real tutorial or help guide
- If you don't have a WordPress website, you can't use this plugin
Learn Dash Pricing
- One site: $199 per year
- Ten sites: $399 per year
- Unlimited sites: $799 per year
Skillshare is one of those eLearning platforms everyone has heard of.
Over the years, they've had a massive push for marketing themselves, especially through influencer marketing, and you've probably seen them advertised through your favourite content creators on Instagram and YouTube.
To host a course on Skillshare, you need to become a Skillshare Teacher. This means your course needs to meet their Class Guidelines, but there's no cost for publishing a class. Pretty much all topics are allowed, but it's recommended that the format is video, is pre-recorded (live video conferencing isn't supported), and lessons average between 30-40 minutes.
| Price: Totally free
Support: 24/7 (Help centre, live chat, support ticket, email)
|Users without an existing audience that want quick results
|+ Totally free to use
+ Access to existing audience
+ Easy to use
|- You are paid based on minutes viewed
- Can't sell individual courses
Now, Skillshare is a little different to the other tools we've covered.
Users of the website pay a monthly or yearly fee that grants them access to all courses on the website, rather than them paying you for course access. Depending on how many minutes your course is watched (plus a referral bonus for any users you get to sign up to the website), you'll get a revenue share paid to you.
This means you'll realistically be earning far less than selling your course content on any other platform. The average Skillshare teacher makes around $200 per month, with the top earners topping $3,000.
This isn't ideal, but here's the trick.
While you're not allowed to upload courses elsewhere, you can use Skillshare to upload a portion of your premium course, almost to act as a trial that can lead them to discover the rest of your course, making Skillshare a great way to market your online course content.
Regarding functionality, Skillshare is very easy to use and set up, but it does have a huge focus on video content and lacks some of the other engagement features that other tools have, like quizzes and surveys.
- Doesn't cost anything to upload your course
- Skillshare already has an audience to discover your content
- The course creation tools are easy
- You won't get paid as much for your course content compared to other websites
- You can't sell your courses individually, and students have to be Skillshare members
- Skillshare is developing a bit of a bad reputation among its users for strict subscription practices
- Free to upload your course as a teacher
9. Academy of Mine
Academy of Mine is designed for small to medium-sized businesses and acts as a learning management system (LMS) for any educational course content you plan on publishing.
Create courses easily using pre-built layouts and themes (in which you can customise almost every aspect), and host them on the platform. The platform is available to student users on all platforms (desktop, mobile, and tablets) and ensures that however your students want to engage with you, they're guaranteed to have the best experience doing so.
| Price: From $599 per
Free plan: No Trial length: Available on request
Support: 24/7 (Email, live chat)
|Larger organisations and corporations
|+ Functionality for selling to companies/organisations
+ Comprehensive range of integrations
+ Fully customisable templates
- Steep learning curve
|Hubspot, Salesforce, InfusionSoft, Marketo
What's more, you can expand your audience thanks to on-platform content translations available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, and many more. It's basically everything you need to super-charge your learning experience.
Everything is drag-and-drop, comes with a website builder, and you can manage everything from admins, students, and instructors from within the dashboard. There are even marketing tools, Google Analytics integrations, automatic and customisable SEO, and integrations to any other online teaching tools you may use.
However, this tool's fundamental stand-out feature is the customer service team. Its users hail it as one of the best around, a team who are there for you whenever you need them and quickly resolve any problems and issues.
In fact, it's an award-winning company in this respect, constantly implementing new features that the user base asks for, improving functionality, and overall making the experience better all the time.
Academy of Mine Pros
- Gives the options to sell to organisations and companies in one go
- A comprehensive range of CRM, Analytics, and other integrations
- HTML5, SCORM 2004 and SCORM 1.2 compliant
Academy of Mine Cons
- Considerably more expensive than other options
- The Essentials plan is limited to 250 active users per month
- Comes with a bit of an initial learning curve, but nothing drastic
Academy of Mine Pricing
- Essentials: $599 per month
- Professional: $899 per month
- Enterprise: Custom pricing only
Founded in 2014, Teachery was launched with one aim.
To make the course creation process as simple yet as impactful as possible. It aimed to strip down unnecessary features, tools, and tech and instead make everything as streamlined as possible.
As a result, Teachery is an outstandingly simple platform that anyone can pick up and use and enables you to create valuable, engaging online courses rapidly. This means no messing around fiddling with options and settings and more time creating valuable content your audience will love.
There are so many great features, including unlimited course hosting, free SSL, complete control over your pricing structures, tons of themes to get you started, integrations, an affiliate program for your courses, promotion features, and so much more.
| Price: From $49 per
Free plan: No Trial length: 14 days
Support: 24/7 (Twitter, email, support ticket)
|Users wanting a simple, easy to use course creation tool
|+ Quick and easy
+ Good marketing tools
+ affordable pricing
|- No quizes
- No code editing
Teachery is simply ideal if you're looking to get your course out into the world as quickly as possible.
Sure, it misses a few features here and there, and the styling may feel a bit chunky compared with other options, but for the speed and price you're paying, few platforms come close to what this offers.
- It's possible to create a full course outline in only a few minutes
- Offers a range of marketing tools, including emails with templates
- The pricing structure is simple and affordable
- Doesn't offer quizzes as an engagement tool!
- Students have limited upload options and can't add their own videos, images, PDF or Word documents
- You can't edit your content using code, only via the features and tools you're given
- Monthly plan: $49 per month
- Yearly plan: $470 per month
Ruzuku is the Marmite of course creation tools.
You'll either love it or hate it.
Starting out, you'll instantly fall in love with how easy it is to use.
Ridiculously easy, as the website itself states. As an LMS, Ruzuku enables you to handle literally every aspect of your course business in one place and has a lot of flexibility.
However, while its simplicity will certainly be attractive to many businesses, it’s also its downfall. Some aspects of the platform feel very restrictive and limited. It may feel almost too simple.
| Price: From $75 per month
Free plan: No Trial length: 14 days
Support: 24/7 email
|Users that value simplicity above everything
|+ Quick to duplicate courses
+ Great support
+ Accept PayPal
|- Basic customisation
- Few marketing tools
|Mailchimp, PayPal, Stripe
The design of your courses will be the same for all lessons, perhaps with a few tweaks here and there and some variations in colour, but that's about it. This may put some students off, but it might be ideal if you're just starting out. If it fits your branding and style, then it could be perfect.
For the price point and ease of use, this is a fantastic platform, one of the best online course platforms around, and if you're a beginner, you'll be well off starting here, and you do get a lot for your money, including domains, a website builder, and so on.
- You can quickly duplicate your courses, which is amazing for A/B testing your content
- The email support team is incredibly responsive and fast in solving issues
- You can take payments via PayPal, Stripe, or your own payment processor
- You can only get in contact with the support team via email
- There are so few customisation options for your course content
- There are fewer marketing tools compared with other platforms
- University: $125 per month
- Up-and-Comer: $83.08 per month
- Bootstrapper: $74.75 per month
Gurucan is a powerful all-in-one course creation tool. With an affordable price tag, 0% on transaction fees, and unlimited content storage, push notifications, support, and hosted webinars, there's no denying that Gurucan is giving teachers and businesses a lot of bang for their buck.
There's a 14-day trial, so you can test drive the platform for yourself, including the course builder, automated marketing features to help create high-performance landing pages, grow your student base, membership payment options, and so much more.
| Price: From $99 per month
Free plan: No Trial length: 7 days
Support: 24/7 email
|Users that want to create their own mobile learning app
|+ Host live events
+ Create a learning mobile app
+ Create a members' hub
|- Basic landing pages
- Can be slow to load
However, Gurucan even offers a 'Done for You' service that allows you to upload your content, and the Gurucan team will take care of the rest, building and marketing your course on your behalf.
There's a lot of freedom and many options with a course creation tool like this, and the fact you can export everything to a dedicated mobile app for easy access means this tool is just a win all around.
- You can sell all kinds of content, including eBooks, challenges, membership websites, and host live events
- The smartphone app is feature-rich and incredibly well optimised
- The course structure is simple, yet grants access to lots of tiny features to help you make the course experience your own
- The landing page builder is still a little limited, but Gurucan is a growing company and improvements are expected soon
- Minor bugs throughout the service, but updates are regularly rolled out
- Some content pages can be a little heavy and can be slow to load
- Expert: $99 per month
- Pro: $149 per month
- Guru: Available upon request
There are many businesses out there that hail Upcoach as being the best course creation tool available today. Instead of us going on, here's a list of everything included under the incredibly affordable month price tag;
- A complete and feature-rich CRM
- Community management tools
- Meetings & event hosting
- Task and project dashboards for students and teachers
- Text, group, and private chat
- Course building and hosting
- Habit lists and trackers
- Tons of automated building, marketing, and engagement tools
And that last one is the beautiful thing about Upcoach.
The platform offers so much, yet so much can be automated however you like. This saves you so much time and money and allows you to focus more on creating valuable content rather than playing with settings and trying to do all the little tasks to get things running.
| Price: From $29 per month
Free plan: No Trial length: 14 days
Support: 24/7 (Support ticket, email, live chat)
|Users that want a "does it all" course creation tool
|+ Resposnive support team
+ Fully featured
+ Amazing API for expanding capabilities
|- Basic landing pages
- Only available in English
|Stripe, Google Drive, Zoom
Furthermore, instead of just having a focus on building courses and selling them, Upcoach is all about community. This means students can interact with you and their teachers in real-time and with each other.
This drastically increases engagement rates and really helps to integrate your business and brand into the lives of your students, which will only help you grow your online course business in a way like never before!
- Drag-and-drop content management with a dedicated course authoring suite
- Provides an API for limitless customising and editing
- Manage all aspects of your business with reporting, task and project management, and multiple user tiers
- No mobile app deployment
- No landing page builder
- Only available in English
- Launch: $29 per month
- Grow: $39 per month
- Scale: $79 per month
- Enterprise: Available upon request
Our Number One Choice For 2022:Teachable
Our number one choice is hand’s down Teachable. The statistics themselves just prove that this platform has everything an online course creation could ever want or need. It doesn’t matter if you’re starting out and creating your first course or you’re a seasoned pro looking to really make your course content your own, Teachable provides your business with tools to make it happen.
It’s easy to use, has a ton of powerful marketing tools to help you get your course into the hands of the people who want it, is fully customisable, and basically just provides everything you need. There are few faults with this platform, and the ones that exist are rarely problematic or go unresolved for too long.
As a business, it should always be your go-to, and we, for one, are excited to see what you build with it next.Try Teachable Free
As you can see, the online course platform industry is booming, and there have never been more opportunities to turn your valuable knowledge into actionable, interactive, and engaging experiences for your audiences, clients, and customers to enjoy. Designing your own online course has never been easier!
But the fun doesn’t stop there.
Don’t just limit yourself to digital courses. There are plenty of tools at your disposal to help you organise in-person classes, workshops, and courses too! Just check out Baluu to see how easy it is to organise your booking process and get people signed up for your next experience!
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