Background Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
If You’re currently selling Or even thinking about selling classes, you do not need to do much hunting to come up with a Thinkific review. There are loads of Thinkific testimonials out there. The main difference this one offers is that it is written by someone with: Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
- Over 20 years expertise in the e-learning Business, with a Particular focus on companies that sell education (as opposed to, by Way of Example, corporate training departments, That Don’t have to convince their students to purchase )
- Extensive experience designing, creating, and executing online class platforms (I had been the founder and CEO of an e-learning platform and path development firm.)
- Over a decade of experience monitoring and researching online course platforms and helping organizations and individuals pick the right platform for selling courses
I have been Tracking Thinkific and other providers which have emerged as a new type of online course platforms. These are programs that LMSes, or are a lot more user-friendly and less expensive than traditional learning management systems. They are a boon for solo edupreneurs and businesses that want to enter the course enterprise. Over time, I think they have real potential to interrupt the learning management system market that is traditional.
Having said That, let’s begin.
Building and Presence Your Online Course Web Site
Any courses you Sell have to”live” somewhere, and ideally that somewhere provides an appealing, user friendly to the students and potential students. Since the introduction of its Site Builder capacities this season, Thinkific is up to the job. Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
Using Site Builder — which is simply a part of the admin board for the platform — you have the ability to set up an attractive home page to your course website and make as many custom pages as you need (e.g., to give information about you and your other solutions ). Despite the fact that you don’t have complete control — you can not, for example, set up your own style sheets (CSS) — you can get very excellent capabilities for modifying branding components like font and colors styles and you can upload pretty much any type of images or media you would want to use.
Website Builder Currently comes with three topics to select from, and there are numerous variations for each of these topics. (The company says more themes are a part of the upcoming development plan.) Additionally, there are a range of pre-fab”sections” you are able to add and modify on any webpage to provide for matters like social proof (e.g. customer quotes or”as seen on” logos), calls to action, count down timer, and pricing choices — essentially, all of the critical tools you require for conducting a successful course or membership site. There is also a blank slate”Text & media” section that can be utilised to create pretty much whatever you want.
As is the case With just about any content management system, it took a while to figure out how to do some basic things like delete sections (the topics offer a home page pre-populated with segments ) and add custom pages to the website menu. However support has been readily available for them. Thinkific includes a solid support site on which you are able to search for help, but I often just use a Google search together with the phrase”Thinkific” to discover whatever I need (e.g.,”create custom website pages Thinkific”). I’ve yet to not find good support by doing this, whether on the Thinkific site or from another user.
Some added Features to note:
- Custom URL (under Settings > Website ) — By default, you’re assigned a thinkific.com address — e.g., learningrvolution.thinkific.com. Having a paid program (beginning at $49 a month for Fundamental ) you can get a custom URL
- SSL (Under Settings > Site) — With any strategy you have the option to turn on SSL (secure socket layer), a best practice for any Web site these days. (Google smiles on this)
- White tagging (under Settings > Site)– By jumping up to a Guru Plan ($99 per month) using the Development Add-on ($.10 per active student/per month) you can easily get rid of the”Powered by Thinkific” language on your site and courses.
- Text Changes (below Settings > Learning Content and several different areas) — It is possible to change a great deal of the default language that is used in navigation and other regions. By way of example, Thinkific utilizes”Chapters” as the label for parts of a program. You may like to change this to”Lessons” Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
Thus, you might be asking,”Can I use Thinkific for the primary Web site?”
For edupreneurs That are just starting off and do not already have an Internet presence the response is an emphatic”yes.” Utilizing Thinkific is a good way to take a big item from your”to do” list (i.e.,”figure out how to find a decent Web site set up”) and concentrate on creating and launching your courses. You can worry about a more sophisticated Web site after.
If you already Have a Web site, however — particularly on a fuller-featured content management system like WordPress — I would not suggest relying on Thinkific (or any other course platform) to your main Web site. Site Builder is fantastic for what it does — and can create a fantastic course website to complement your main Web site — but ultimately it is relatively limited. Some of the key current limitations include:
- All themes are column. Therefore, for instance, you can’t put e-mail sign-up forms, promotions for class, or other items down the left or right side of your site.
- As mentioned, you can’t apply your own CSS (cascading style sheets), mostly a limit if you really wish to mirror the branding of an present Web website.
- There’s absolutely no control on search engine optimization settings on Internet pages — e.g., you can not specify the title tags or meta tag descriptions. You can, however, do so on course landing pages, which is possibly more important for the typical edupreneur.
- Thinkific lacks the abundance of plug-ins along with the extensive network of experienced contractors who are available to encourage platforms such as WordPress.
Regardless of these Limitations, Site Builder is very likely to do the work well for many edupreneurs and is quite a little better than what most online class platforms supply.
Creating Online Courses with Thinkific
While you Definitely want an attractive, user-friendly site to house your courses, the classes themselves are the main attraction. As you might expect, this is a place where Thinkific really shines.
To start with, the Platform provides a range of pre-configured templates that may be quite beneficial to course builders searching for help with how to arrange their content. The templates cover the range of standard scenarios you would be likely to consider for offering an educational item. All these are:
- Blank — Start fresh and build your course to meet your particular curriculum needs.
- Mini-course — Use a free or low-cost mini-course to generate leads for a complete flagship program or service.
- Flagship Course — Build a complete online class employing a robust curriculum outline created using best practices in mind.
- Pre-sell — Create a pre-sell landing page and get started building a waitlist to gauge interest on your course.
- Digital Download — Host downloadable files in an online course to generate revenue or collect email addresses.
- Membership Resource Library — Host downloadable resources to be included in a membership package with this template.
- Webinar Replay — Host your webinar replay video to allow registrants to review your presentation and provide.
All of these can Be modified broadly — you can alter the content from the sections that are provided, delete sections, or add new sections to arrive at the approach that is right for your content. All throughout the procedure, Thinkific provides”smart mentor course building tips” to help you. (I found them helpful, but they may be easily turned off, if you prefer.) Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
In Case You Have zero Experience working with Internet content, there will inevitably be a bit of a learning curve, but my opinion is that Thinkific has done a fantastic job making that curve as manageable as possible. Invest in earning your way up it, and you will reap the benefits.
And you are Already comfortable with other Web content systems — like, by way of another program platform, WordPress or instance — I believe that you will find working in Thinkific for a breeze.
Overall, the logic Of putting together a class in Thinkific makes complete sense. After selecting”New Course,” picking your path type, naming it (which you may change at any point), and rescue it, you include”Chapters” (or change ones already in the template) to produce the structure of the program. As noted above, if you don’t like the term”Chapters,” you can change it to whatever you would like.
You fill the Chapters with content in a way similar to how I described using Site Builder over. There are 11 options:
- Video lessons — Upload a file. (This gets saved in a video library for re-use in other classes. Videos stored in this library are protected from access by anyone who is not a registered user of your site.)
- Quiz classes — Create a quiz for the students. (More info on quizzes under )
- Multimedia classes — This can be a means to link out to content not hosted on Thinkific and also make it an integrated part of your program. A Few of the possibilities include:
- Webinar tools (provide the link to a live Zoom session, for example)
- Surveys (e.g. Typeform)
- Appointment booking tools (e.g. Calendly)
- Presentations (e.g. Prezi)
- Google Docs
- Articulate Storyline and Adobe Captivate files (Requires Professional or Enterprise license. More on this below)
- Text lessons — Combine text, pictures, videos, etc. into one lesson. This is essentially the equivalent to”Text and Media” Site Builder option discussed previously.
- Research lessons — Gather by building a survey in Thinkific.
- PDF lessons — Publish a PDF document to be looked at within the course participant.
- Disqus classes Disqus discussion boards to your program. (Note: there is also a discussion option built into Thinkific that you may turn on or off beneath Support Your Students > Discussions.)
- Audio classes — Upload a sound file.
- Downloads resources available for downloading from inside the course participant.
- Presentation lessons — Upload a demonstration as a PDF document and record audio for each slide.
- Exam classes — Include a Brillium exam in your program. (A Brillium license is separate from Thinkific and starts at $49 per month. More about that below.)
The above Choices Will get the work completed for all but the most complex edupreneurs. The primary areas they fall short is in
- Providing for branching scenarios — i.e., allowing learners to go down different paths based on their performances from the course or information you collect about them and
- Like studying games, inserting components.
If those are Choices you truly need, you’d be better off using a full-blown course authoring tool like iSpring or Articulate Storyline (see more about these types of programs here). Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
The use of Articulate and Captivate at Thinkific
Many course Founders will be perfectly content with using the resources in Thinkific to create courses, but some may prefer the option of producing their courses with third party e-learning course creation software like Articulate Storyline or Adobe Captivate.
Fundamentally, using a Third party tool is an alternative to seriously consider if you (a) already have a significant number of classes built out in one of these tools (in which you case you probably do not want to have to re-create them utilizing Thinkific course production tools), or (b) you anticipate developing a substantial catalog of lessons with a relatively long”shelf life” — in which case you might not wish to have your classes locked to a particular shipping stage.
You can use these Kinds of tools with Thinkific — Articulate Storyline and Captivate are encouraged — but there are some limitations you should be aware of if you go this path.
First, Thinkific (like the rest of the platforms in its class) hasn’t implemented SCORM, which stands for the Shareable Content Object Reference Model. There’s a whole lot to SCORM, but the main thing for edupreneurs to know is that it provides standards for how an internet course can communicate with a learning platform to send it data like how long a student has invested in a course, or whether specific areas of the course have been finished successfully. Thinkific tracks this kind of data with its own methods. (More about SCORM here.)
Secondly, you cannot Import an Articulate or Captivate route into Thinkific on your own. These classes comprise of over a single file (such as, for instance, a video file), and to get them into the platform, you need to zip the files up and send them to Thinkific customer service.
The Features and How They Benefit You
A great Course building platform offers you the features you need from begin to finish. Including the marketing, the course building, the selling, and also the teacher/student management.
Systems like Thinkific do not host classes on your own website. Your content is actually hosted with Thinkific (so that you don’t have to venture outside and find your own hosting,) but it still gives you complete control over what your site looks like.
When compared to Systems such as Udemy, Thinkific surely provides more liberty and control that is branding. Let us explore a few of the other standout attributes.
Outstanding Student Management and Communication Modules
During my Thinkific review, I noticed the smoothness of the student communication tools. It’s a visual student management area, together with images of your pupils, names, contact information, and information for how far they’re in your program.
You have the Option to send customized emails to each of the students or create a dialogue with the community. Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
Incentives are A part of this learning environment since Thinkific offers completion certificates, report cards, and during courses, the mails for sending out just about whatever you want of course.
Along with Unlimited replays of course content, speech controls, and optimisation, pupils working with the Thinkific platform should feel right at home.
A Mostly Drag and Drop Editor for Quick Course Design
Part of the Reason Thinkific seems great compared to the competition is that of its course designer. In case you don’t need to, you do not have to mess with any code.
In fact, all of Your content is organized with a simple drag and drop editor, where you stack the course content and move it around .
Talking of Content, Thinkific supports uploads of media types. By PDFs to audio files, and polls to quizzes, the platform is great for offering up a wide assortment of learning resources for your students.
As we mentioned Before, every one of these files are hosted on the Thinkific servers. You shouldn’t need to worry much about a file being too big or running slowly in your very own shared servers.
When you personalize Your course site it offers some editing tools to the beginners on the market. You can adjust items like colour schemes, banners, and logos without touching any code.
However Advanced developers have full control over the HTML and CSS. Consequently, if you would like to make your website unique, the alternative is there for you.
Promotions on Autopilot
Some online course Platforms fail in the promotions arena. As there’s no way to begin earning money unless people know your course 19, this is unfortunate.
Thinkific does The program was built into by it the way, with promotional and marketing tools. Much of this is automated as well. Consequently, if you want to trickle articles to your students Thinkific has this operation. Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
Furthermore, you Have the ability to target the right people and send automated emails based on a schedule. Pricing can be done through Thinkific, along with the choice to get paid immediately when someone signs up on your program.
In Terms of getting It is tried by people outside of your website to come out, Thinkific comes with an online affiliate marketing program to reward men and women who recommend your program and bloggers. Coupons are supplied through Thinkific, giving a opportunity convince novices that your course is worth investing in and to create ads with specials to you.
Everything from Coupons to affiliates is monitored in the dashboard, and you could link Facebook, your Adwords, and other accounts where students are coming out of to determine.
Managing, Engaging, and Supporting Students
Aside from Allowing you to deliver your courses, one of the reasons for using a online course platform is that it makes managing and tracking your customers and their information much easier.
Communicating with Learners
In addition to Helping you organize your students, Thinkific also enables a number of ways for you to communicate with your students and also for them to give feedback on the program. Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
As noted, By way of example, you can enable discussion for your classes and then manage your students gifts under Service Your Students > Discussions, where it is possible to sort talks by course, respond to pupils, and — if needed –“Disapprove” contributions which you don’t want to show up in the program. (Note: Enabling discussions is now an all or nothing choice in Thinkific — i.e., either all classes have no or it courses have it. The workaround for this would be to use the Disqus alternative on a course-by-course basis.)
You can also Enable your student. Then you have the ability to approve these reviews (they are not printed automatically) and utilize them as social evidence on your sales page for your program. Unlike discussions, this feature can be enabled on a course-by-course basis.
Ultimately, there are Numerous notifications that can be disabled or enabled in the Thinkific platform, some of which can be personalized. You can send a customized message when your site is registered for by them to pupils, enroll in a course, or complete a course. You can also send weekly reminder messages. (Note: Reminders are site-wide, not course-specific.)
Managing and Organizing Learners
To start with, When an individual signs up at your website, Thinkific captures all of their key contact data (e.g., first name, last name, e-mail) and utilizing custom sign-up fields (under Preferences > Orders & accounts) you can easily add fields to capture whatever specific information you desire from the users. (Note that, unlike platforms such as Udemy, you get complete access to the user data you collect.)
You can also Organize users. This apparently simple feature can have a large effect on your business model by making it feasible for you to sell classes in bulk among the best ways for course vendors to induce revenue growth, in my experience.
You, using classes May also easily organize your learners by organization, or cohort, time, enrollment, job-type, or other factors, which makes it feasible also to refine your marketing moving ahead and to monitor the effectiveness of your own offerings with every group. (Note: Use of the Groups attribute requires a Pro program license with the Development Add-on.) Discover More about the Thinkific Groups functionality Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
Tracking and Reporting
A reason to Have a specialized class platform — to just posting content supporting a password on a Web site instead, for example — is that it will track things like course progress and conclusion as well as quiz and survey data.
Thinkific’s Progress tracking (under Support Your Students > Progress) enables you to select a particular student and monitor a number of factors for each class in which the pupil is registered. For each class you will see:
- Percentage of Course of Viewed
- Percentage of Course Completed
- Student Name
- Student Email
- Course Completed at (date)
- Course Launched at (date)
- Course Activated at (date)
- Last sign in (date)
I enjoy this you If you’re adding new lessons May choose to reset the completion percentage of a student at any time.
Overall, the Course coverage is fairly simple, but I guess it will serve the needs of the vast majority of course entrepreneurs.
Contrary to the Program Reporting, the quiz and survey reporting is exported to a .CSV document (rather than displayed on screen) and emailed to you. The .csv file includes the responses from all students who have obtained a survey a quiz e-mail address, together with their title, and if it was taken by them. For quizzes, it provides percent and the number of questions the student got correct.
Overall, reporting For quizzes/surveys and courses is among the main areas in which the Thinkific system might be stronger. In fairness, this has a tendency to be true for much of most of the platforms in this category of platforms. Over time, it would be possible to access course completion and quiz/survey data via a single Web interface. Even better, it might be good to be able to view a student transcript that displays hours related to a course, any credit earned (not now captured in any way in Thinkific), and a link to obtain the certificate related to the course. Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
What Thinkific is Missing
Anyone who has Been working in the e-learning industry for the past few years (as I have) will understand that Thinkific provides a remarkable range of features at a really affordable price. It wasn’t that long ago that a system with these capabilities could have cost thousands of dollars.
With that in mind, It is really hard to argue that Thinkific is”missing” much. Nonetheless, there are gaps that can rule it out for a few class sellers — and these tend to be openings that are characteristic of this class of platforms. The main ones I find are:
No support for xAPI/TinCan or SCORM
As mentioned previously, While Thinkific can host and deliver courses created in shared authoring tools like Articulate and Captivate, it doesn’t really take advantage of the SCORM (or even xAPI/TInCan) packaging capabilities of these applications. In case you’ve got a robust and legitimate reason for using one of the significant e-learning criteria, then Thinkific would not be the way to go.
As I said, these Are areas which, for the most part, are not served well by platforms that are in Thinkific’s course. To get a platform which supports all three means a price point a few times greater than Thinkific — and it can go up a lot from there. Thus, be sure that these are openings for you before ruling out Thinkific.
No continuing education credit capacities
While you can Indicate the estimated number of hours for finishing a course in Thinkific, you can’t define the total amount of education. While there may be work-arounds, for most course suppliers that focus on providing continuing education credit, this will be a significant barrier to utilizing Thinkific, Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
No multi-tenancy option
Multi-tenancy Means that you can make and handle multiple instances of a stage under one umbrella. This can be really useful if you are a training company with many corporate clients and those customers want their very own branded example of this platform for serving and managing their customers. While the Group functionality in Thinkific gets you a part of the way there, it is not the same matter as multi-tenancy.
Although I have yet To discover an online course platform which has many hidden fees, Thinkific advertises it too has no hidden fees or contracts. That’s very good to know, however, nothing special.
However, Thinkific Does provide a plan that is totally free for those who wish to try the stage but not get bogged down by limitations. In theory, it makes it possible to begin building a pupil base and start your store. There’s also a free trial if you would rather give a whirl to one of the plans that are more innovative.
The pricing is Divided into four simple plans:
Starter — $0 to many core Thinkific capabilities. This plan has a top transaction fee, all you want to create, promote, and sell unlimited courses your classes, course upsells, content hosting, basic integrations service, and access to all capital.
Basics — For $49 a month you receive all core and newcomer features, together with a 5 percent transaction fee, promotions and coupons, monthly subscriptions, course packages, intermediate integrations, basic Zapier, drip content, affiliate reporting, a majority student emailer, customized domainname, and additional course rates. Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions
Business — For $99 a month you receive the attributes from all previous programs, no transaction fees, completion certificates, personal and concealed courses, website white labeling, a host storyline, intermediate Zapier, webhooks, three-course admin accounts, advanced HTML/CSS editing, priority service, teacher payout coverage, an onboarding call, payment strategies, along with a direct Infusionsoft integration.
Advanced — For $279 a month you receive all features from prior plans, no transaction fees, one sign-on (SSO), three site admin accounts, 10-course admin accounts, an onboarding professional, onboarding bundle, people API, innovative integrations, and advanced Zapier.
Thinkific has some Benefits to its pricing layout. Not only are you able to begin your course at no cost (something that is not offered with competitors like Teachable,) however, the extra 3 programs are broken down in a logical fashion.
After all, you Most probably don’t need API access until you start becoming advanced with your course selling.
I would not mind Seeing the completion certificates and also the HTML editing in the Essentials plan, but $99 per month still isn’t that bad.
As you can see, The trade fees are 10% to the free plan. That is high, however, it creates an superb atmosphere for anyone with low quantity now or individuals who don’t have the capital to launch a professional online shop. As soon as you start making money that trade fee can be cut down by you.
Last, you can By paying an annual basis also save money. The Essentials plan goes to $39 a month if you cover it all upfront. The Business program is $79 a month and the Advanced plan is $219. That makes the pricing programs much like Teachable.
I will end this Thinkific review at which I began: this is. Hopefully it is evident by now that it supplies a range of the characteristics that are essential to encourage your ordinary edupreneur.
I think it is Important to repeat as I wrap up that Thinkific is a business with a great deal of momentum. This is not a trivial point: the marketplace for online course platforms like Thinkific is noisy and crowded. You can be sure that a lot of the platforms which are here now will undoubtedly be gone. I feel confident Thinkific will be about, and the organization is obviously growing and continually investing to boost its platform. Sell Online Courses Using Woocommerce Based Solutions