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So long, boring creator pages, rigid donation options, and hefty transaction fees

With Podia, accepting recurring donations is just the beginning. Build your own website, offer free and paid membership tiers, sell standalone products, and leave transaction fees in the dust as you grow.

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A free plan that provides way more value.

Podia’s free plan has the same transaction fees as Patreon’s pro plan, but you get so much more. Create free and paid community tiers, accept one-time payments, build your own website, and sell a digital download and coaching product, all from your sleek Podia dashboard.

Ditch stifling transaction fees.

With Patreon, you’ll pay anywhere from 5% to 12% in transaction fees on every sale you make, forever. With Podia, there are no transaction fees on paid plans, and you won’t get stuck with an ever-increasing bill as your business grows.

Own your audience.

You worked hard to build your audience – don’t let a massive platform control your relationship with them. With Podia, you own your customer data, sales, content, and website.

Video demo

Podia in action

Wondering if Podia is a better platform for you? Go behind the scenes in this video walkthrough, where Ben will show you the ins and outs of Podia’s software and how it can help your business.

This table has Podia,Patreon columns and 18 rows

Comparing Podia vs. Patreon

Podia

Patreon

Free plan

Podia is yes

Patreon is yes

Price

Podia isFree, or $39/month to $199/month

Patreon is5% of platform sales to 12% of platform sales

Sell online courses

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Sell digital downloads

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Webinars

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Community

Podia is yes

Patreon is yes

Coaching

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Video hosting

Podia is yes

Patreon is200 MB limit per upload

Email marketing

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Unlimited products

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Unlimited customers

Podia is yes

Patreon is yes

Unlimited membership tiers

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Your own website

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Teammates

Podia is yes

Patreon is yes

Embeddable buy buttons

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Customer chat messaging

Podia is yes

Patreon is yes

Built-in affiliate program

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Live chat support

Podia is yes

Patreon is no

Need help moving your products and customers to Podia?

Need help moving your products and customers to Podia?

Learn about migrations

Why creators choose Podia over Patreon

Here are some reasons creators choose Podia instead of Patreon to power their businesses.

Run your entire business under one roof.

Connect with fans in the same place you manage your email, run your affiliate marketing program, and sell digital downloads, courses, webinars, and coaching products. With no separate logins or distractions, Podia is an all-in-one platform that helps creators replace 3-6+ tools and simplify their lives.

Build a custom website.

Your Patreon creator page is plastered with Patreon’s branding, and you get very few customizations. Podia lets you create an entire website for your brand, complete with unlimited sales pages.

Reward your members with beautiful products

Show your followers how much you appreciate their support. With Podia, each community tier can be bundled with online courses, downloads, coaching sessions, and other exciting digital products.

The happiest customers on the internet.

Podia’s customer satisfaction (NPS) scores are in the top 0.01% of all companies on the internet. Feel free to Google our reviews and see for yourself!

We create stuff for other creators, so we’re deeply embedded in the creator community – and so is Podia. That’s why we went with them. They are the most creator-friendly team and platform we’ve found, full stop. Happy to be using their product, happier to have gotten to know their team through their great content and customer support.

— Jay Acunzo, Founder of Marketing Showrunners and Make What Matters

Podia vs. Patreon: What's right for me?

Great question! We obviously think we’re pretty great, but here’s an honest answer:

Both Podia and Patreon allow you to accept recurring donations from followers who want to support your work. You can also create different membership tiers and provide fans with exclusive content or “rewards” to thank them for their patronage.

But while Patreon is a big name in the crowdfunding and recurring donation arena, Podia helps you build a full-fledged business in addition to receiving monthly support. If Patreon is your online tip jar, then Podia is the platform that empowers you to be an entrepreneur.

To help you choose the best platform for you, let’s dive into the details.

All prices and features are accurate at the time of writing, but they may change over time.

Build a membership community with more flexibility

Both Podia and Patreon allow you to create a membership community for your followers. You can encourage followers to join in exchange for premium content and behind-the-scenes information, or you can simply ask followers to donate without offering anything in return.

With Patreon, you can receive your funds through Paypal, Stripe, or Payoneer. With Podia, you can use Paypal or Stripe as your payment processor.

Free and paid community tiers

One of the most significant differences between Patreon and Podia is that Podia allows you to offer a free membership tier for your followers. While earning recurring income is great, it’s not the only reason content creators might want fans to join their online community.

Communicating with your audience in a space that you own, far away from mysterious social media algorithms and endless distractions, is powerful.

And with a free tier option, Podia allows you to build a home base for your following where you can speak with them directly.

Of course, you can also offer paid tiers with more perks like exclusive content, private community areas, digital downloads, online courses, and anything else you can think of, but it’s nice to have a virtual lobby for everyone who loves your creative work.

Podia creators Jill and Jeffrey from the Whole Food Plant Based Cooking Show came to this conclusion when they decided to monetize their YouTube channel through recurring fan donations.

PATREON VS: 1

They also wanted a place to share brand updates and new video announcements with their followers, so they created a free membership tier for supporters who couldn’t pay the monthly subscription fee.

“We tried Patreon, but they wouldn’t allow free members. And we wanted everyone in one place,” they explained.

Reliably communicating with your biggest supporters is a game-changer, and Podia makes it possible through free and paid membership community tiers.

Member to member communication

Patreon works well if you want to share content with your audience, but it doesn’t have many features for members to communicate with each other.

Creators can send emails and share new posts, but members can only like and comment. They cannot add their own posts to the feed, and you’ll need to integrate with third-party community tools to get truly collaborative features.

In Podia communities, creators can choose how much interaction they’d like their subscribers to have with one another. By toggling a few simple settings, creators can let members share new posts in topics they have access to.

Members can also like, comment, and search for member profiles. This could lead to greater community engagement and stronger connections.

PATREON VS: 2

Of course, you can always limit members’ ability to post community-wide or just in certain areas like your announcement section, but it’s nice to have both options available.

If you want members to interact with each other in a community-style environment, or if you simply want more control over when and how your followers connect, Podia is a better fit.

One-time and recurring donations

Another difference between Podia and Patreon is that Podia allows you to accept one-time donations.

On Patreon, it’s only possible to subscribe on a monthly basis, which means you could be leaving money on the table from supporters who don’t want to make a big commitment.

Bundle membership plans with products

On Patreon, you can offer rewards at each subscription level. Rewards can be physical merchandise or downloadable digital items.

Patreon creators must upload the files to their feed to deliver digital rewards to subscribers. Members can scroll through the feed to find their products, but this can get messy if there’s a lot of content to dig through.

Podia gets around this issue by allowing creators to bundle membership tiers with digital products like courses, files, and coaching sessions. These products can be enjoyed in a separate area of the community.

PATREON VS: 3

You can even showcase other digital items you sell in the “More products” tab.

PATREON VS: 4

You can also sell these products as standalone products for followers who don’t want to pay a monthly membership fee.

Sell digital products, courses, and coaching

Recurring donations and memberships are great, but they’re just the tip of the iceberg for making money in your business.

While Patreon limits you to accepting support from fans, Podia allows you to create and sell different product types, including online courses, digital downloads, webinars, and coaching.

In our recent study of 900+ creators, we learned that creators sell an average of 10.95 digital products, ranging from ebooks to drip courses to group mentorship programs.

Another survey of 600+ creators revealed that people want their online community platform to connect to the rest of their creative work.

If you’re certain you’ll only ever need a recurring donation membership platform, Patreon works just fine. But for most creators, there’s no telling what you’ll want to make in the future.

Tacking on extra ecommerce or online course platforms is frustrating, costly, and time-consuming. By going with an all-in-one option now, you can confidently create whatever products you want down the road – without spending weeks learning new software.

Create your own website

Your website is your virtual home base on the internet. It’s where audience members and prospective customers can learn more about you, view your products, sign up for your email newsletter, and get in touch.

Patreon gives you a creator page where you can share your profile image, a cover photo, and a description of your Patreon program. You can also display a preview of the content inside.

With Podia, you can build a full website with unlimited pages to promote your online business. Our stress-free website builder makes it easy to set up a beautiful home page, storefront, about page, membership site, and beyond.

You can also build unlimited landing pages to promote your products and encourage people to donate.

Here’s how Tara from the Happy Artist Studio uses Podia to share her art, highlight her courses, and market her membership community to followers.

PATREON VS: 5

Running your website on the same platform where you sell products and accept donations means all your essential tools are connected by default.

No need to deal with outside web hosting, plugins, themes, checkout tools, and other hassles that distract you from your best creative work.

Integrated marketing features

On the marketing front, both Podia and Patreon allow you to offer coupons or special offers to attract new customers.

Podia lets you promote products through live or pre-recorded webinars, run your email marketing campaigns, build an affiliate program, chat with prospective customers, and so much more.

Since everything is built-in, you can manage your marketing efforts without having to find, vet, and pay for additional software.

With Patreon, you can host live streams and webinars through integrations with Crowdcast. You can build your email list through integrations with email marketing platforms like ConvertKit and Mailchimp. And you can create a community through integrations with Discord and Discourse.

You can do a lot, but using excessive integrations isn’t always the best move.

First, many come at an extra cost. Crowdcast, for example, starts at $29/month and has a 5% transaction fee on paid live streams. ConvertKit is free for your first 1000 subscribers, but prices start at $29/month once you cross that threshold.

All these add-ons get pricey fast, plus you’ll still be paying Patreon’s high transaction fees.

Second, you or someone on your team will be responsible for connecting and maintaining these tools. That means multiple support centers to deal with if something breaks and a lot of set-up on the front end.

Bottom line: Patreon comes with integrations to get marketing tools and functionality. Podia also has integrations, but you probably won’t need them because Podia includes your entire marketing stack for one flat rate.

Pricing and transaction fees

Patreon is free to use, and you won’t pay a flat monthly fee. Instead, you’ll pay transaction fees on every sale you make, which could become prohibitively expensive as your business grows.

Patreon pricing:

  • Lite: 5% transaction fee
  • Pro: 8% transaction fee
  • Premium: 12% transaction fee

PATREON VS: 6

Podia has a free plan and three paid plans. There are no transaction fees on the paid plans, so you’ll pay the same monthly platform fee no matter how much you earn.

The free plan comes with a website, an online community with unlimited membership tiers, one digital download, and one coaching product.

Podia pricing:

  • Free (8% transaction fee)
  • Mover plan: $39/month
  • Shaker plan: $89/month
  • Earthquaker plan: $199/month

Here’s how this could shake out by the numbers:

If you earn $100 per month, Patreon’s Lite plan is the cheapest – and most limited – choice. You’ll only pay 5% in transaction fees, but you won’t be able to do basic things like adding multiple membership tiers.

As your monthly income grows, the tables turn.

Let’s say you’re earning $1,000 per month.

On Patreon’s Pro plan, you’ll pay $80 per month in transaction fees. ($1,000 x 8% transaction fee = $80).

On Podia’s Mover plan, you’ll only pay $39 per month with no transaction fees. You’ll also get email list-building tools, a website, and the ability to sell unlimited courses, downloads, and coaching.

Now let’s say your brand blossoms, and you’re consistently earning $2,000 per month for an entire year.

Here’s what you’d pay each month on Patreon:

  • Patreon Lite: $100/month
  • Patreon Pro: $160/month
  • Patreon Premium: $240/month

And on Podia:

  • Mover: $39/month
  • Shaker: $89/month
  • Earthquaker: $199/month

PATREON VS: 7

If you were on Patreon’s Pro plan earning $2,000 per month for an entire year, you’d pay a total of $1920 in transaction fees.

But if you used Podia’s Mover plan, you’d only pay $468 per year (or a cool $396 per year when you pay annually).

When you choose Patreon over Podia, you pay over four times more each year to use a “free” platform with fewer features.

As your business grows, Podia quickly becomes the more affordable option and gives you a bigger toolbelt.

Plus, with Podia’s selling tools like email marketing, upsells, affiliate management, and your own website, you’ll have everything you need to hit those revenue goals much, much faster.

If you only need a way to accept recurring fan donations and don’t mind paying steep transaction fees, give Patreon a try.

But if you’re looking for an all-in-one platform that makes running your online business simple and affordable, whether you’re just starting or growing fast, we built Podia just for you.

Make your free Podia account today, or join our weekly demo to see all these features in action.

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    We also have some head-to-head comparisons of other leading platforms in case you’re choosing between those, including:

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