You’ve got tons of expertise to share with the world, and know an online course is the fastest, most profitable way to get your valuable knowledge into the hands of your students…but getting your head around the tech side of things? Hmm, somehow crawling into bed and hiding under the covers always seems a LOT more appealing…
Finding the best software to create an online course is no small feat but ultimately, there is a cost to letting technology hold you up. And all the time you spend disappearing down Google rabbit holes equals time you aren’t bringing in revenue from your course or membership.
To help you make the right choice from the get-go (and spare yourself the tech-induced headache of having to switch platforms further down the line!), we’re guiding you through the best-of-the-best software to create, market, and sell your courses.
These are all products the Circuit Sales System team uses (and loves), so we’re confident they’ll set the foundation for a successful and seamless online course creation journey.
All-in-One Solutions vs. Specialized Software
Before we dive into specific software recommendations, it’s worth considering whether an all-in-one solution or using specialized software is going to be best for your business.
If you want to create an online course, you need a software solution for the different elements of course creation such as managing video files, enrolling students, taking payments, marketing your course, and much more.
And the idea of having everything in one place certainly *sounds* appealing, but could it potentially limit your growth later on?
All-in-one platforms like Kajabi are popular because they offer the full shebang, but it’s also worth bearing in mind that there are specialized tools that focus on just one specific aspect of course creation.
Our Circuit Sales System team has had luck sticking with software for their specialties (Kajabi for hosting courses, Drip for email, Leadpages for landing pages, etc.). Using separate tools allows for a more tailored approach, and leverages the strengths of individual software for optimal results (albeit a less convenient solution than a ‘one-stop-shop’).
While the CSS team thinks Kajabi is amazing for hosting courses (more on that later), we’ve definitely seen some limitations in its email system (especially around tagging, customizing, and a few other processes).
Kajabi is the Amazon of course creation—if you’re looking to have everything in one place to market your digital products, then it may be the perfect platform for you. But, as always, this decision completely depends on your and your business’ needs.
Best Course Platform: Kajabi
Kajabi is the platform used by all of the Nicki K media brands, and so as customers of the software, we can safely say it does a great job when it comes to course creation and engagement.
It has all the necessary features, including customizable themes, assessments, and quizzes, making it an excellent choice for creators who want a streamlined experience without compromising on functionality.
Kajabi offers a user-friendly interface, and we’re big fans of the drag-and-drop course builder, which makes it straightforward to structure and organize course content (even for those without extensive technical know-how!).
We also love the options for drip scheduling and content locking, which enhance the learning experience, and promote a structured and engaging course progression.
The CSS team has recently been making use of Kajabi’s live class feature, which enables interactive sessions like group coaching (without the need for external tools) and accommodates up to 200 students.
Most importantly, from the learner’s perspective, Kajabi’s course delivery experience is well-optimized and you’ll struggle to find another course platform that gives you as much flexibility, which is one of the things we like the most about the platform. Kajabi also offers a mobile app, meaning users can access course content conveniently on the go!
Best for Creating Videos: Screenflow
When it comes to creating engaging and professional-looking videos, Screenflow is a top choice. This powerful video editing and screen recording software enables course creators to produce high-quality video content.
If, like us, you’re guilty of the odd ‘‘umm’ and ‘errr’, the great thing is you can go back and edit all those out after you have finished recording—yes, even professional copywriters struggle to get their words out sometimes! Instead of re-recording the whole video, you can simply start again from the beginning of the sentence and sort everything out in the edit.
Best for Payment: SamCart
Seamless payment processing is crucial for any online course creator. SamCart excels by providing a user-friendly platform for managing transactions, while also placing a heavy focus on maximizing conversions (music to an entrepreneur’s ears!).
In fact, their co-founder claims the average user makes 3-5 times more revenue compared to using other online shopping cart software—this definitely requires some consideration now, right?!
The Nicki K Media brands use a combined sales and checkout page on SamCart and we simply love how it streamlines the entire process.
Its features include one-click upsells, order bumps, and subscription management, making it an ideal choice for any business owner who wants a hassle-free payment solution.
Marketing Your Course
As you’re probably aware, creating an outstanding digital course is only half the battle…
We also need to make sure it reaches and connects with your target audience. So, here are some of our favorite tools to enhance your marketing efforts:
If you’re looking to elevate your email marketing game, Drip is a cost-effective, scalable, and measurable solution. It has to be one of the easiest marketing tools for email that we’ve come across, allowing you to design and send irresistible emails without being a tech wizard—definitely a big tick for us!
Automation is notorious for being a bit of a learning curve for entrepreneurs, but with Drip’s wide range of workflow and automation template tools, and a visual builder tailored to ecommerce, the whole process feels so much simpler.
Drip makes it simple to run effective A/B tests on your content and keep track of the must-monitor metrics that will increase your sales on autopilot.
If you want to turn clicks into customers without the tech stress, you’ll definitely want to consider LeadPages—a powerful landing page builder, which allows you to create high-converting pages to showcase your course.
Its drag-and-drop interface and templates are a dream to use, and let you design professional looking landing pages without any coding skills (phew!).
We rely on LeadPages for our own opt-in pages and love their impressive library of resources to make sure you’re getting the most out of this incredible tool.
Giving your customers deadlines is a must to get them to take action (us humans are verrry good at postponing actions we need to take—even if we know they can benefit us).
But remember, we want to create authentic urgency, not fake urgency. And Deadline Funnel does exactly that.
With personalized deadlines to make sure your subscribers receive your best marketing message at the time they are most interested, it urges them to make a purchase decision and helps you to generate more sales.
Over here, we’re BIG fans of Deadline Funnel and, in all honesty, we don’t think any other software comes close. We’d say this is hands down a must-buy tool for any course creator looking to increase conversion rates, and make more passive income.
Meta ads is a great way to accelerate business growth and for anyone looking to get started, we’d highly recommend Successful Ads club.
Unfortunately, it’s all too easy to waste a LOT of time and money figuring out what’s going to work with paid media (yep, we’ve been there…). So it’s definitely not a bad idea to seek expert help from someone who knows what they’re talking about—especially when they’ve spent millions already doing what you’re trying to do.
In the ever-evolving world of paid media, keeping on top of every advertising trend is nearly impossible for entrepreneurs—remember people literally do this as a full-time job! But Successful Ads Club gives you access to strategy, mentors, and coaches who are working in the trenches daily when it comes to what’s new, what’s coming out, and how to run profitable campaigns.
This platform equips you with the knowledge and confidence in your own ability to profitably run Facebook & Instagram ads… and scale your business.
What software do you use and what do you love—or loathe—about it? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Note: this page contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase via one of these links, our company may receive a small commission that we put toward bringing you even more free resources. Our team only recommends services we’ve used and stand behind.