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There’s plenty of options when it comes to online course creation. Podia is one option that many are using, and the tool is growing. But, is it worth it?
Podia claims to be an all-in-one platform where online entrepreneurs, marketers, and teachers can sell online courses, digital products, and memberships.
So, with that in mind, we’ve done an in-depth test of the platform to bring you this extensive Podia review and see how it stacks up.
Podia Review Summary
Description: Podia is an easy-to-use platform that allows you to create amazing online courses without having prior knowledge.
Offer price: $49
Application Category: Learning Management System
The Podia platform is like a Swiss army knife: versatile, intuitive, and easy to use. It’s the best platform for beginners, as it’s intuitive and simple to use. You won’t have to strain your “technological” muscle too much!
- Course Creation Process
- Ease of Use
- Integrations and Features
- Educational Benefit
- Marketing Tools
- Great all-in-one tool to sell courses, online products, and memberships.
- Affordable price.
- Good marketing options, especially email marketing.
- Useful integrations with the most popular software pieces.
- Easy and intuitive interface that is great for beginners.
- 0% transaction fee on sales.
- Not many design customization options.
- Only one type of quiz questions available.
- The membership feature only available in the Shaker plan.
What Is Podia and Who is it For?
Podia is an all-in-one digital content platform where entrepreneurs, online marketers, teachers, and course providers can host and sell online courses, collect memberships, and create and sell digital products.
Released back in 2014, Podia’s main goal was always to create the most creator-friendly tool on the web. This is still the main goal of the platform.
And do they manage to achieve it?
You betcha! The biggest asset that Podia has to offer is its intuitive interface. You don’t have to be a seasoned programmer to use the platform, as everything is arranged neatly for you.
But who is Podia for?
It is for everyone who’s looking to sell courses online, sell digital products, and offer memberships. Podia is for:
- Teachers and instructors looking to sell online courses or webinars
- Online entrepreneurs looking to sell products or memberships
- Content creators – podcasters, bloggers,
- Digital marketers
- Anyone looking for an easy-to-use online platform
Although with the features Podia has (and doesn’t have), I’d say it’s best suited for beginners and creators of small to medium-sized courses.
Podia has stiff competition from platforms like Kajabi, Teachable, Thinkific. But despite that strong competition, I believe that for beginners, you’ll do well to find a better platform that’s easier to use.
Let’s take a closer look at why.
The Course Creation Process with Podia
One of the biggest advantages that Podia has over platforms like Kajabi is just how easy it is to use.
Beginners will find the Podia’s course creation interface very intuitive. Everything is laid out in front of you and there are clear and easy steps to follow in order to create a course.
Let’s see how you can create a course with Podia.
First, you have to create your Podia account. You can do so by clicking on the “Start your 14-day trial” button on the main page. From there, you’ll be asked to create an account with Podia and later, choose your membership. But more on the membership plans later.
Once you create your account, you’ll find yourself on the Dashboard page of your account. This is where you control everything. If you’re a total beginner, you can take a live tour with customer support professional, or go straight into creating your course.
To create a course, simply click on the “Products” button at the top of your screen. After that, click on “Add a product”, and select the type of product you want to create. In our case, you would click on “Online Course”.
Then, give your course a name. This can be anything you like as long as it fits your course. I’ve named my course “How to Create a Course on Podia – Course”.
So far, so good. Once you click on “Create & Continue”, you’ll have your first course created – well done!
But now it’s time to complete the course and fill it with your own files and contents.
Now it’s time to customize your course and add your own content. For now, the course is still set as free since we didn’t change the pricing of the course. You can change the pricing of the course by going to the “Pricing” section.
To start creating the course, you need to create sections of the course, which is how most courses are structured. To do that, click on the “Add section” button in your course dashboard. This is the screen you’ll be presented with:
You can enter the title of the section and add a description. With Drip settings, you can choose to lock this section for a specific amount of time after the student enrolls in it.
Once you have all your sections done, you can start adding content to the sections.
As you can see, you can spend hours creating your course, but the course creation process will never feel like a chore. Everything is so easy to use and the platform is easy to navigate that even beginners will feel right at home.
While there aren’t any templates for creating courses, you’ll have a lot of freedom with Podia for course creation. And that’s the beauty of Podia: great customization options with a very intuitive and easy-to-use platform.
Ease of Use
Podia is, in my opinion, the easiest platform for course creation currently available. It has clear and easy steps that you can follow, and everything is organized clearly.
As you can see, everything is clearly visible and the steps you need to take are intuitive and easy to follow. The navigation is seamless, too, and the site works quickly. And on the off-chance that you do somehow get stuck in the process, there is always the impressive and helpful customer support available.
In terms of ease of use, there are a few factors to consider:
- User experience
- How fast the site is
- Tutorials and customer support
Let’s go over each factor in more detail.
User Experience at Podia
Everything that Podia does is geared towards you, the customer. Even if you’re a complete beginner, you’ll easily find your way through its platform.
The platform is stripped down to bare bones where you only have the essential pieces in order to create a course or sell a product.
But at the same time, you won’t ever feel like you’re compromising on the quality. Podia has an all-in-one platform where you can sell products, courses, or create memberships in a visually appealing way.
As I’ve already mentioned, the navigation is really a part of the user experience. But the navigation at Podia is so easy that I simply have to mention it separately.
It really is made for everyone out there. In less than a few hours, you can have a course ready to go live, or a product ready to sell. And that’s mainly thanks to the painless navigation on the platform.
All the buttons are clearly visible and there is no clutter on the site, which makes it even easier to navigate the platform.
How Fast the Site Is
Podia’s platform is fairly fast, although it does get stuck occasionally. However, I only experienced this once or twice, and it got resolved fairly quickly.
It will also depend on your browser speed and connection quality, of course. But overall, the site is very fast, which is crucial when you’re looking to create a course quickly.
Tutorials and Customer Support
Now, this is where Podia really shines.
As soon as you sign up, you’ll get the chance to go through a live demo with customer support professionals. You’ll feel like you’re treated as their star customer, and not just another number here.
This is the email you’ll get when you sign up for the free trial:
You can see that they’re trying to help you through every step of the way. Plus, there are tutorials available and you can always read the Q&A, which can come handy when you feel stuck.
For me, Podia is by far the easiest course creation tool that I’ve used so far. It even beats tools like Kajabi, which may sometimes feel too much to take in, especially for beginners. There is a learning curve with Kajabi while with Podia, even my granny could do it!
Integrations and Features
Integrations are crucial for succeeding online. They will give you additional tools for maximizing your store’s potential, and integrate your favorite tools out there into the Podia platform.
Every online seller or course provider should be able to track their emails and send out sales letters or promotions.
For this, Podia offers integrations with many email providers, such as:
- MailChimp – one of the most popular email marketing tools.
- ConvertKit – crucial email automation tool.
- AWeber – auto-responding email tool.
- Drip – great for building personal relationships with customers.
- ActiveCampaign – great for small businesses.
- MailerLite – easy to use.
- GetResponse – great for sending out newsletters.
As you can see, Podia offers integrations with most of the popular emailing tools. You won’t feel left out with Podia at all. MailChimp and ConvertKit integrations are arguably the most important ones, but the rest of the tools will also come very useful.
Nowadays, most of the payments are done online. And if you want to collect payments for your online course, then you will need to take advantage of these integrations.
The great news is that Podia offers integration with two of the most popular payment platforms: PayPal and Stripe.
However, if you’re looking to accept payments in installments, only Stripe will offer you that possibility.
If you’re particularly interested in the statistics and the numbers behind your store of course, then you can connect your Podia site with Google Analytics or HotJar.
While for course creators, this might not be of great importance, it’s certainly crucial for store owners who sell products with Podia.
Even if you intend to sell courses with Podia, then you should have some form of marketing in place.
Podia allows integrations with Facebook, Pinterest, and Google Ads, which can kick your marketing efforts to another level.
Zapier integration is an appealing option for many Podia users. It allows for hundreds of additional integrations via Zapier with many useful apps, such as:
- Google Sheets
and many more.
These integrations can really kick your productivity to another level and make your Podia site or store even more successful.
All these integrations can be helpful for growing your business even further and support the transfer of your content from other platforms to Podia.
What About Other Podia Features?
We’ve already looked at Podia’s course creation feature, but there are some other features that will help you build your business.
- Online courses. You can create online courses easily and sell them to your store with Podia.
- Digital products and downloads. Online entrepreneurs will be able to sell online products and make them downloadable – products such as eBooks, PDF files, checklists, video files, text, audio content, bundles, and more.
- Memberships. You can easily create membership plans to your liking and sell content to members, or allow them access to digital downloads. You can also add a membership for your blog and add bundles to memberships.
- Webinars. These are a great alternative to online courses, and Podia allows you to offer webinars to your customers for either free, as part of a membership, or for a one-time fee. It’s a great tool to grow your mailing list, increase your sales, or add credibility to your cause.
Let’s talk about the educational benefits of Podia.
Here, we have to talk about three different categories:
- Quizzes and student assessments
- Student forums
- Drip content
In my opinion, Podia has somewhat limited options when it comes to educational benefits. While there are a number of different ways to offer these benefits, I think that the customization options are somewhat lacking.
Additionally, you’re also not able to hand out certifications for your course, which is something that other platforms allow.
Quizzes and Assessments
Firstly, the assessment questions, or quizzes.
These can be used to ask your students questions and see how well they are following your course. You can also easily track their data and see how well the students do on these quizzes.
However, the main constraint here is that you only have one way to ask these questions, and that is through multiple-choice questions. It’s not a deal-breaker by any means, but it’s just something that other tools like Kajabi do better.
There is no dedicated forum for your course. However, you can allow having comments on your course content, which can spark conversations between students and you can also provide your input.
This is welcome since some students might find some parts of your course confusing or unclear. It’s a good way to connect to students, and it can also be a good platform for a nice community from your course. Although, a forum or way to communicate with students would really open up some more learning opportunities.
Fortunately, Podia does have drip content. This allows you to “drip” the content to your users bit by bit until they have access to your entire library.
It’s a great way to progress with the course, as you can set the parts of the course to be time-restricted. It not only forces the student to try hard and get more out of the course, but it also allows for a better and clearer progression.
To spread the word about your course, you need to have good marketing tools at your disposal. Luckily, you will have that at your disposal with Podia.
You can create a storefront for your content – you can do that easily with sales pages, product or course pages, and even email marketing.
These tools are very neat and easy to use. How detailed it will be is completely down to you, and you have everything you need to create a nice storefront. You can add widgets to your storefront and manage them the way you want to.
However, I must say that compared to some other platforms, these features are not as comprehensive with Podia. Some additional widgets would be great.
These are the widgets you can add to your storefront:
- Text, Image with Text, Video with text
Podia deserves the highest grade when it comes to customer support. Even though they don’t have phone support, you will feel like Podia actually care about their customers instead of making you feel like a cow they are trying to milk more money out of.
They offer 24/7 email support for you. For complete beginners, video tutorials will be helpful at the start.
From Monday through Friday, they also offer live chat with real customer support professionals. Imagine that! And you’re actually talking to real human beings instead of talking to a bot. Feels nice.
There’s also a Q&A section if you have any specific questions about Podia. Overall their customer support is top-quality – shame they don’t offer phone support, though.
There are two pricing options with Podia:
Mover – $39/month
Shaker – $79/month
This certainly puts it among the more affordable platforms. For smaller courses, Podia is fantastic as there won’t be many additional charges. Although you can certainly expect to use the Shaker plan if you have a big course with hundreds or even thousands of students.
Oh yeah, and you also get a 14-day trial completely free!
I won’t go too much into depth here as I have many comparisons already written.
The main alternatives for Podia include:
Most of these might be more pricey, but they offer more in-depth customization options that Podia doesn’t.
To conclude, I must say that my experience with Podia was a very positive one. If you’re a complete beginner, then this platform is a must for you.
It’s very easy to use and you’re practically guided through every step of the way. You get a live demo and comprehensive customer support, so you’ll never feel like you’re swimming against the tide.
It’s also a very complete option, as you can sell products, courses, and memberships with Podia. Promotion is easy with great marketing options, and there are many useful integrations with other software pieces.
Overall, I think that Podia is right up there with the best. And for the affordable price, you’re getting a lot of bang for your buck.