Are you leveraging the best online course platforms to sell your skills, experience, and knowledge?

You should.

The online learning market continues to grow as more people seek to access education on their terms. More online course platforms also keep cropping up with numerous competitive features that make it easy to earn from your expertise.

What’s more?

Some of the best online course platforms make it easy to get new students and collect data you can use to tailor learning experiences to your audience.

And guess what?

It’s a market that will keep growing.

Researchers expect the e-learning market to grow to USD 1 trillion by 2027 from $250 billion in 2020.

Global Market Insights
Image via Global Market Insights

However, the more online learning platforms that come up, the harder it gets to choose one that suits your needs.

For this reason, we've listed some of the best online course platforms plus their key features, pricing, and pros and cons to make your job easier.

Ready to identify a platform that works for your specific needs?

Read on:

However, before we can get to the best online course platforms, we examine what you should consider before settling for one.

Disclaimer: This content contains some affiliate links for which we will earn a commission (at no additional cost to you). This is to ensure that we can keep creating free content for you.

Best Online Course Platforms: Considerations When Choosing the Right One

Even with choice overload, one of the best outcomes of too many online course platforms is that there's one out there that will fit your needs.

So, what should you consider when choosing the best online course platforms:

Start With Why

Be very clear about why you need a platform and your goals for your online course business.

Secondly, outline the experience you want students who register for your courses to have and whether the platform can help you deliver on the outcomes you promise.

Consider Your Budget

Considering your budget helps you narrow down your search to the best online course platforms within your price range.

And if working on a low budget, choose a platform with multiple pricing to pay more as you grow. This way, you start with one of the low-priced options then upgrade as your online course business grows.

Choose Your Hosting

There are three ways to tackle hosting when identifying the best online course platforms:

Self-Host

Leverage software like WordPress to set up your own course website, then integrate plugins, set up payment, etc.

This option requires technical knowledge and the ability to quickly fix issues if your site breaks down.

Online Course Marketplace

On these sites, you upload your course, and the marketplace takes care of everything else. They host your course, help you promote, ensure students can access it, and collect payments.

However, they control everything, take a percentage of your sales, and you have to work under certain restrictions.

Learning Management Systems

There are different options for this, but they give you control over how you handle your courses. They include:

Standalone Platforms

The best online course platforms in this category cater to small businesses looking for a simple way to brand their own website and have hosting catered for.

These kinds of platforms are ideal for people who want to build a turnkey branded online course without worrying about creating funnels or leveraging email marketing.

WordPress Plugin Online platforms

These are tools you leverage to sell courses if you have an existing WordPress site.

However, you do need technical skills and knowledge on what plugins to leverage to get all the required features. These include form plugins, security plugins, redirect plugins, WordPress backup plugins, etc.

It's also important to buy these plugins only from reputable companies to avoid instances where your entire business shuts down.

All in One Online Course Platform

The best online course platforms in this category provide you with all you need – from tools for online course creation, hosting, email services, support, community building, etc.

They are great if you have no technical skills or want everything in one place.

Identify Crucial Features

The next step when choosing the best online course platforms involves identifying must-have features depending on your requirements.

But how do you identify features?

Start by knowing your ideal students' pain points and what features would help you solve them.

And most importantly?

Leverage the 14-day trial most of the best online course platforms offer to test the waters.

However, before you can do that, here are some of the crucial features to look for in the best online course platforms:

Built-in course builder: Makes it easy to create engaging online courses.

Ecommerce support: The best online course platforms should double as a marketplace that enables you to make money with your courses.

Cloud-based: A cloud-based online course creator ensures faster implementation since it doesn't require onsite installation.

Test and assessments: Most of the best online course platforms enable you to gather feedback and evaluate knowledge retention with quizzes and assessments.

Ease of use: It should be simple to understand and use for course creation and sharing.

Learner experience: The best online course creator offers seamless learner experience features like self-paced learning, multi-lingual support, collaborations, discussions, etc.

Third-party integrations: The best online course platforms integrate with other solutions like marketing automation tools, email providers, funnel tools, list building tools, etc.

6 Best Online Course Platforms

Here is a list of the best online course platforms with features, pricing, and other details to help you make an informed decision.

1. Thinkific

Thinkific
Image via Thinkific

Thinkific ranks among the best online course platforms because it gives you the tools you need to create, market, deliver, and sell online courses to your audiences.

Its drag and drop feature enables you to either upload predesigned online courses or create them from scratch. It also offers multiple content types, including quizzes, video, text, surveys, etc., to help you make your course interactive and engaging.

Features

  • Drag and drop course builder
  • Unlimited courses
  • Ability to create and sell online private courses
  • Numerous themes and customization options
  • Secure cloud hosting
  • Full e-commerce
  • Instant funds access

Pros

  • Free trial available
  • User-friendly interface
  • Unlimited students and high-quality courses
  • Numerous payment options

Cons

  • Although it’s one of the best online course platforms, the learning curve for course creation may be difficult for first-time creators.

Pricing

  • Free test-drive $0
  • Basic plan: $39 USD/MO
  • Pro: $79 USD/MO
  • Premier: $399 USD/MO

Pro tip: Stay connected to current and prospective students from your dashboard by creating and saving customized user searches. You can then automate reminders to highly valuable prospects.

2. LearnWorlds

LearnWorlds
Image via LearnWorlds

LearnWorlds is an end-to-end online course creation software that takes care of your course creation process, marketing, maintenance, monetization, and analytic needs.

And guess what?

This access to multiple tools for building interactive courses makes it one of the best online course platforms.

What's more?

This online course creation software enables you to build optimized landing pages, leverage their blogging tool, and create one-click course sales funnels.

Features

  • Unlimited courses
  • Video library access
  • Numerous interactive content features
  • Ready-made templates
  • Marketing tools, including landing pages, one-click sales funnel, blogging, etc
  • Marketing and management of your own affiliate program
  • Constant support
  • Flexible pricing options including subscription courses and membership sites

Pros

  • Advanced course creation
  • Interactive learning tools like tests, assignments, quizzes, etc
  • Interactive video feature
  • Marketing tools including landing pages, blogging tools, etc.

Cons

  • Complicated learning curve for beginners
  • Limited course payment options
  • Cluttered user interface

Pricing

  • Starter: $29/month
  • Pro Trainer: $84.15/month
  • Learning center: $254.15/month
  • High volume and corporate: Contact support for pricing

Pro tip: Leveraging the feature “see what you are changing” can help you see how changes you make look like on your site before you leave the editor. Using it ensures that your final published version looks professional.

3. Kajabi

Kajabi
Image via Kajabi

Kajabi offers numerous features you can use not only to build online courses, but also to create marketing emails, landing pages, checkout pages, and so much more.

But what makes Kajabi one of the best online course platforms?

It's an all-in-one online course platform that enables you to create your own website and build complex marketing campaigns.

Best of all?

This course builder offers design and promotion options that make it easy to promote and sell online.

Features

  • Beautifully designed themes that require no coding
  • Intuitive interface
  • Numerous integrations options including email, Google Analytics, accounting software, etc.
  • Landing page builder
  • Drag and drop marketing funnel builder
  • Marketing automation tools
  • Custom domain and numerous customization options
  • In-depth data and reports

Pros

  • Numerous course sales and marketing features under one roof
  • Built-in capability to build a search engine friendly course website
  • Numerous engagement tools, including assessments, Community, etc
  • Clean and intuitive interface

Cons

  • High starting price
  • Steep learning curve
  • Need a third party integration for certificates

Pricing

  • Free 14 day trial for each plan
  • Basic plan: $149/mo
  • Growth: $199/mo
  • Pro: $399/mo

Pro tip: Do not leave out the “SEO and Sharing” settings page blank for Kajabi to revert to defaults. Instead, fill in all details to increase your chances of ranking on search results.

4. Teachable

Teachable
Image via Teachable

Teachable ranks among the best online course platforms because it caters adequately to non-tech savvy course creators. It's also an affordable platform with an easy learning curve.

It enables you to create a course website reflecting your brand and upload course content with ease.

What's more?

It’s one of the best online course platforms with a clean, easy-to-use interface containing only crucial customization features you need to create courses and sell them.

Features

  • Unlimited students and members-only Community
  • Unlimited video bandwidth and hosting
  • Third-party integrations
  • Advanced reports
  • Integrated payment processing
  • Sales pages creation feature
  • Course certificates
  • Flexible student pricing options

Pros

  • Ease of use. Your course can be up in few minutes
  • Allows you to create simple funnels
  • Numerous integration options
  • Affiliate marketing tools

Cons

  • Few course customization options
  • 5% transaction fee for their Basic plan

Pricing

  • Basic plan: $39 per month
  • Pro: $119 per month
  • Business: $299 per month

Pro tip: Leverage Teachable's bundle to group courses or products into one unit and offer them to your students at a discounted or single price.

5. Podia

Podia
Image via Podia

Podia sets itself apart as one of the best online course platforms since it allows you to sell courses, webinars, memberships, and digital downloads.

What's more?

It has numerous customization options that give you control of your branding and an easy drag and drop builder. Your digital products can also live on the platform, making it easy for customers to download, access, and buy them.

Features

  • Customizable branding
  • Live previews
  • Pre-launch, pre-sell, and upsell marketing features
  • Unlimited students, courses, earnings, bandwidth, and emails
  • Integrated email marketing
  • Ease of use and great support
  • Live-chat widget
  • Products bundle feature

Pros

  • Ease of use and simple interface
  • Numerous customization options
  • Good student experience
  • Built-in online chat option

Cons

  • Limited automation options
  • Limited reporting
  • Limited design options, especially if you need total control

Pricing

  • 14-day free trial
  • Mover: $39/mo
  • Shaker: $79/mo
  • Earthquaker: $179/mo

Pro tip: Leverage their resources page to learn everything you need to make your online teaching business successful. They have a great database with information on creating an affiliate program, building courses, marketing your own private membership site, etc.

6. LearnDash

LearnWorlds
Image via LearnDash

As a popular LMS plugin for WordPress, LearnDash is one of the best online course platforms for solo course creators, academic institutions, training organizations, and everyone else.

With LearnDash, you can visualize your courses as you build them with their drag and drop editor. You can also include quizzes, lessons, assignments, etc., right from the course builder.

What's more?

The plugin enables you to automate some functions as a student completes tasks. For example, when they upload an assignment, finish a lesson, fail a quiz, etc.

Features

  • Powerful course builder
  • Advanced quiz builder
  • Several payment options
  • Automated email triggers
  • Student forums: private & public
  • Course bundles
  • Dynamic content delivery
  • Free and priced add ons

Pros

  • Their focus mode allows your courses to look professional
  • Drag and drop builder
  • Numerous monetization options including group, one-off, subscription offers, recurring purchases, etc.
  • Third-party add ons

Cons

  • No free trials, although they offer a 30-day refund as per their refund policy.
  • Poor onboarding process
  • Steep learning curve for non-tech savvy users

Pricing

  • Pro Package: $369
  • Basic Plan: $229
  • Plus Package: $199

Pro tip: To keep students coming back to your courses or have them learn them over a period of time, leverage the built-in drip content feature. Then you can make content available after a certain duration or several days after they sign up.

FAQs

Q1. What is the best online course platform?

A. This list contains the best online course platforms:

  • Thinkific
  • LearnWorlds
  • Kajabi
  • Teachable
  • Podia
  • LearnDash

Q2. What is the best free online learning platform?

A. The best online course platforms with free classes include:

  • Udemy
  • edX
  • LinkedIn Learning with Lynda
  • Alison
  • Khan Academy
  • MIT OpenCourseWare

Q3. How do you create an online course and sell it?

A. These steps can help you create and sell online courses:

  • Pick a course
  • Validate the course
  • Pre-launch your course
  • Leverage online course creation software to create interactive content.
  • Choose between self-hosting, an online course marketplace, or learning management systems.
  • Price your course
  • Create course sales pages
  • Market your course
  • Analyze data and optimize

Q4. What is the best site to learn online courses?

A. Some of the best online learning platforms include:

  • LinkedIn Learning with Lynda
  • LearnWorlds
  • LearnDash
  • Thinkific
  • Kajabi
  • Teachable

Q5. What are the benefits of using online platforms in education?

A. Some of the benefits you get from teaching through the best online course platforms include:

  • Enables you to tap into everyday technology to make interactive online courses.
  • Makes it easy to create online courses and track students progress
  • Enables for flexibility and cost-effectiveness

Q6. What is the best SEO online course?

A. Some of the best SEO online courses include:

  • Semrush Academy
  • Yoast Online SEO training
  • Moz SEO Essentials Certification
  • HubSpot SEO Certification Course

Q7. What should you look for in an online course platform?

A. Some of the crucial features to look for in the best online course platforms include:

  • Built-in course builder.
  • Cross-platform compatibility
  • White-labeling
  • Multi-media support
  • Interactive learning elements
  • Third-party integrations
  • Reasonable transaction fees

Q8. What are the benefits of online courses?

A. These are the benefits of enrolling in an online course:

  • Reduced costs
  • Easy access to course material
  • Networking opportunities
  • Increased time with instructors
  • Easy access to expert tutors

Q9. Why do students prefer online courses?

A. The following are reasons students go for online courses

  • Flexibility in creating individual schedules
  • Personalized learning approach
  • 24/7 access to course materials
  • Increased student interaction with tutors and course material
  • Access to expert tutors from across the globe

Sell Online Courses With Ease on These Platforms

When deciding between the best online course platforms, consider the ones that offer all the features you need without breaking your bank. They should also offer tools that make it easy to create brand awareness, market, and sell courses.

And most importantly?

The best online course platforms enable you to create engaging and interactive content for your students.

Do you need additional help comparing the best online course platforms and choosing the best for your needs? Comment below, and we can help you find something suitable for your courses.

Disclaimer: This content contains some affiliate links for which we will earn a commission (at no additional cost to you). This is to ensure that we can keep creating free content for you.