I've been using Teachable to host my online courses for the past four years and I've used almost every plan that they offer at one point or another (with the exception of the high volume plan.)
In this post I'm going to break down what each plan offers (and what I used it for) in the hopes that it will help you choose the Teachable pricing plan that is the best fit for where you are in your course business right now.
Teachable offers 4 different plans:
- Free: Click here for the quick link (it can be hard to find on the site)
- Basic: $39/month or $399/year
- Professional: $99/month or $999/year
- High Volume: $299/month
* You can switch your plan at anytime if you are on a monthly billing cycle, however you will save some money if you sign up for an annual plan.
All Teachable plans (including the free plan) include:
- Unlimited video
- Unlimited courses
- Unlimited students
- Unlimited hosting
- Integrated sales pages and payment processing
- The ability to manage student accounts
- Discussion forums
- Basic quizzes, and
- No fees on free courses
Technically, you could run an entire online course business on Teachable's free plan, but this may or may not the *best* option for you.
Who should use the free plan?
If you are brand new to Teachable, the free plan is a great way to get familiar with the platform before you buy. I stayed on the free plan while I was setting up my course.
But there are some major drawbacks to selling your courses on the free Teachable plan. The most obvious is the transaction fees.
Here's a breakdown on the transaction fees that are charged for each sale for each of Teachable's plans:
Do the math on "free"
If you're selling courses on the free plan, you'll end up paying $1 + 10% on each course sale.
For example, if your course is priced at $200, you'll end up paying $21 of each sale to Teachable if you're on the free plan.
At this rate, if you sold more than 5 courses a month, you would be better off upgrading to the $99/month Professional plan (which has no additional transaction fees) and benefiting from the increased functionality and instant payouts.
In my opinion, the free plan is great for getting your course set up, but not the best option for launching or selling.
Once you're ready to start selling your course, I highly recommend upgrading to the $99/month Professional Plan if you have room for it in your budget. If not, the $39/month Basic plan is a better option for selling your course than the free plan, but it does have some drawbacks that you need to be aware of.
Who should use the Basic Plan?
At $39 a month, Teachable's Basic plan is fairly affordable which makes it an attractive option for most new course creators who are working with a tight budget.
Here are the additional features that you'll get with the Basic plan:
- a custom domain for your school
- the ability to generate coupon codes to promote your course
- an integrated affiliate program (so other's can promote your course)
- a built-in email marketing system
- third party integrations,
- drip course content (which allows you to deliver your courses over time instead of all at once), and
- you can have up to two authors/owners for your school.
These features are great, however, there are three things that you need to know about this plan so that you aren't caught off guard later on down the road:
- Teachable charges a 5% transaction fee on every course sale.
- You must use Teachable's "payment gateways" which means that you don't get instant access to your course revenue.
- You are required to offer a 30 day refund policy.
Let's break it down...
If someone purchases your course while you are on the Basic plan, Teachable will hold your funds for the 30 day refund period. If the student does not request a refund within 30 days, Teachable will deposit the funds into your Paypal account the following month during their payout period.
*Note: You do get instant access to your funds with the Professional plan (this hold only applies to courses sold on the Free or Basic plan.)
On average, I had to wait about 45 days from the time I made a sale to the time the funds hit my back account. That might be fine if creating courses is just a hobby and you're able to cover all of your expenses with other income. But that's a long time to wait if you're trying to bootstrap a legitimate business or side hustle.
On top of that, you have to pay Teachable a transaction fee of 5% for every course sold on the Basic plan.
Do the math
If your course is priced at $200 and you make 10 sales in one month, you'd end up paying $100 in transaction fees on the Basic Plan. The Pro plan is $99 a month but has no transaction fees, therefore, if you were to sell more than 10 courses a month at this price point, you'd actually be losing revenue by staying on the Basic Plan.
This part can seem counter intuitive, but it's important to crunch the numbers to see where your "break even" point is on each plan so that you can maximize your course revenue.
In sum, the Basic Plan is great if:
- You're on a tight budget,
- Only planning on selling a handful of courses each month (where transaction fees are less than monthly cost for the Pro plan), and
- You're willing to wait at least 45 days to get access to your funds.
Who should use the Professional Plan?
In my opinion, this is the best plan for people who are serious about turning their course into a legitimate source of income.
Here are the additional features that you get with the Professional plan:
- Instant payouts
- No transaction fees
- Live chat support (as opposed to email only)
- Graded quizzes
- Advanced developer customization
- Advanced reporting
- Unbranded website
- Bulk import students
- Up to 5 owners/authors
The most important feature of the Professional plan, in my humble opinion, is the instant payout feature with no additional transaction fees.
PayPal & Stripe Integration
When you're on the Pro plan, you can integrate your PayPal and Stripe accounts right into Teachable so that all of your course revenue goes straight to you instead of being processed through Teachable's payment gateway.
Refund Policy Optional
Another good thing about the Pro plan is that offering refunds is optional. I actually prefer offering a 30 day refund policy on my courses, but you may want to have a stricter policy where students are required to show their work or no policy at all. This plan gives you the freedom to choose how you want to run your business.
Advanced Reporting Tools
You also get advanced reporting tools so that you can monitor completion rates and see exactly where your students are in the course. This is great for identifying weak or trouble spots in your course curriculum.
Advanced Design & Automation
And the final thing that I'll mention about the Pro plan is that it offers a lot more flexibility when it comes to customizing your school. You get access to the "Power Editor" which let's you add custom code to your school to change the functions and designs to meet your needs. You also have the option to integrate additional third party apps like Zapier so that you can do a lot more with automations.
Who should use the high volume plan?
The High Volume plan is for people who want to have more than five owners or authors for their school. If you're a larger organization and need to have multiple admins or instructors who need access to the platform to upload materials, then this plan is for you.
What do you think?
Are you considering using Teachable to host your courses? If so, which plan do you think you'll use? I'd love to hear your thoughts and questions in the comments below.