13+ Brilliant Patreon Alternatives to Monetize Your Audience

AS BLOG Patreon alternatives

AS BLOG Patreon alternatives

With the demand for Patreon alternatives rising, new platforms are popping up every other day. Lucky us. Now, the marketplace for platforms to build up and monetize your subscriber base has something for everyone.

We’ve done the work for you in this article to help you make the right choice. This post compiles a curated list of the 13+ best Patreon alternatives available today, comparing use cases, features, and pricing.

So sit back, get cozy, and read on to find the best Patreon alternative platform for you in 2021.

What’s Patreon? The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Patreon landing page

Source: Patreon

Patreon is the OG platform for creators to monetize their subscriber base. But increasing prices have sent some users running for the hills.

Meanwhile, due to claims of censorship, Patreon has felt the heat from high-profile Patreon creators like Jordan Peterson making their losses public and Sam Harris closing his account.

Best For: The majority of creators on Patreon are artists, vloggers, musicians, and podcasters. Because Patreon is one of the oldest platforms, the creator base has grown very diverse. It’s basically made for creatives of all kinds.

Pros:

  • Works well for established niche creators that have passionate fans
  • Built-in email and patron-only posts to communicate directly with the audience
  • Flexible funding goals
  • Consistent and reliable payments

Cons:

  • No promotional tools and limited user support
  • It’s difficult to build your community on the platform and the discoverability of creative projects is low
  • Creators of political content and certain content genres have experienced crackdowns in 2019 due to new and fuzzy content restriction policies

Pricing:

Patreon is free to get started, but they take a flat 5% fee once you start earning (along with the industry-standard rate for processing payments).

They’ve recently launched three different pricing tiers: Lite, Pro, Premium. These tiers have 5%, 8%, and 12% flat fees respectively.

The processing payment rates apply to all tiers and are as follows: 2.9% + $0.30 per successful payment over $3 and 5% + $0.10 per successful payment of $3 or less.

The 13 Best Patreon Alternatives in 2021

Without further ado, here’s our curated list of the best Patreon alternatives:

1.   Hy.page

Patreon alternative Hy.page

This bio link builder plus membership platform is a surprisingly strong contender to Patreon as it has the ability to create and manage exclusive content as a social media bio link.

The idea is to use the Hy.page bio link to not only have one place with all your most important links but also on that same page sell digital products, exclusive content, collect donations, fan requests and manage your membership subscriptions.

It’s the perfect marriage between Linktree & Patreon.

⭐️ ALERT – Hy.page is also listed as a lifetime deal on Appsumo, check it out!

Best for: Influencers and individuals looking to create a seamless membership experience between social media and their gated content.

Pros:

  • Generous free plan
  • Multiple projects (accounts) per subscription (can build multiple membership sites)
  • High-level customization
  • Built-in link bio features
  • Own your customers and their data
  • No commissions/fees on your revenue
  • Easy membership and content management in one place

Cons:

  • No API yet (developers say it’s coming soon)

Pricing:

Hy.page is a strong contender with one of the most generous free plans and no % taken on your revenue or profits. The paid plans start at $19/m and the highest plan $39/m, these options add extra projects and features. For a limited time, you can get Hy.page lifetime deal starting at $39 on AppSumo.

2. Heights Platform

Patreon alternatives - Heights Platform

Source: Heights Platform

Heights Platform is geared towards helping you create and sell online courses using your own branded platform and a custom domain. It’s one of the best customizable e-learning platforms.

Best for: Solopreneurs, coaches, and consultants who want to sell their expertise through online courses.

Pros:

  • You set your own course fees
  • Built-in payment processing, content management and analytics
  • Unlimited courses, content, and students
  • Supercharged student engagement with points, badges, projects and forums
  • White-labelling to customize with your own branding

Cons:

  • No built-in email marketing. But this shouldn’t be a problem if you already prefer working from your email provider
  • It’s missing a few features that other bigger players have (e.g. test/quiz creation)

Pricing:

Standard subscription plans start from $39, $79, or $399 per month. But you set your own course fees, and get to keep it all. Standard-industry transaction fees of 2.9% + $0.30 apply per payment.

3. Tribe

Patreon alternatives - Tribe

Source: Tribe

Tribe is a cloud-based community platform that lets you engage and connect with your followers.

It’s awesome for harnessing the power of social connection to better understand your customer base, acquire and retain customers, and boost conversions.

Best for: Marketers and agencies who want to build a community along with WordPress users that want simplified Google Analytics inside WordPress.

Pros:

  • Cloud-based and fully customizable
  • Includes simplified Google Analytics
  • Automatically email analytic reports to your clients
  • See your highest performing marketing campaigns & pages
  • Build a thriving community and grow your customer base

Cons:

  • Users have reported minor bugs
  • No mobile app

Pricing:

Paid plans start from $85 and $249 per month or more for large enterprises or those in regulated industries. Tribe also offers a free plan for individuals or smaller businesses.

4. Podia

Patreon alternatives - Podia

Source: Podia

Podia is an affordable, all-in-one marketing platform that helps you sell digital products, online courses, and memberships.

Best for: Start-ups, solopreneurs, and anyone on a tight budget selling memberships, downloadable digital content, and online courses. Similar to Zipsell.

Pros:

  • Affordable pricing
  • Affiliate program
  • Built-in email marketing
  • Embedded checkout
  • Video hosting support
  • 0% transaction fee on sales

Cons:

  • Email builder lacks customizable fields
  • Membership feature only comes with higher-priced plans

Pricing:

Monthly plans start at $39 and $79. Payment processors also charge a 2.9% + $0.30 fee, which may vary based on your location.

5. Buy Me a Coffee

Patreon alternatives - Buy me a coffee

Source: Buy Me a Coffee

Buy Me a Coffee is a donation-based membership platform that accepts one-off and monthly support from your fans.

Best for: Artists, creators, and anyone with an audience to get tips.

Pros:

  • Allows one-off donations
  • Ability to sell digital downloads and share exclusive content
  • Payments are transferred automatically to your account

Cons:

  • Not suitable for larger businesses or anyone looking to scale up

Pricing:

There are no monthly fees or paywall features. The platform charges a 5% transaction fee and standard PayPal and Stripe payment processing fees.

6. Memberful

Patreon alternatives - Memberful

Source: Memberful

Memberful is a membership plugin for WordPress. It lets site owners sell memberships and customize the customer experience. Plus, it integrates with Stripe, WordPress, and Mailchimp.

Best for: Media companies and larger enterprises, as it can accommodate scaling fast. Similar tools include Restrict Content Pro and MemberMouse.

Pros:

  • Custom branding
  • Email newsletters
  • Coupons, free trials, and gifts
  • Intuitive membership management
  • Members-only content and forums
  • Analytics and conversion tracking

Cons:

  • Not as many features as most other platforms

Pricing:

Starts free with a 10% transaction fee. Paid plans start from $25 monthly with 4.9% transaction fees.

7. Ko-fi 

Patreon alternatives - Ko-fi

Source: Ko-Fi

At Ko-fi, you can share your work, and fans can support you for the price of a cup of coffee — or more. You can set up donations and commissions on a one-time basis or monthly.

Best for: Jar-tipping for artists, writers, cosplayers, podcasters, etc. Similar tools include Flattr.

Pros:

  • Easy, fuss-free user experience
  • No supporter sign-up required
  • Ability to offer memberships, paywall content, and personalized commissions

Cons:

  • Minimum donation of $3
  • No built-in marketing tools

Pricing:

Other than the standard payment processing fees, Ko-fi takes 0% of your donations. Paid premium features come with the Gold plan at $6 per month.

8. Liberapay

Patreon alternatives - Liberapay

Source: Liberapay

Liberapay is a platform for recurring donations. Donations are capped at €100.00 a week per donor to prevent outside influence.

Best for: Creators who produce continuous work – content or software – and maintain the upkeep. Similar to Open Collective.

Pros:

  • No platform fees
  • Teams feature
  • No obligation to give rewards
  • Supports multiple languages and currencies
  • You can integrate your accounts on Twitter, GitHub, Mastodon, and nine other platforms

Cons:

  • Hard to make long-term projections
  • A small and relatively new company, so you may not get enough exposure

Pricing:

Liberapay charges 0% platform fees. You’re subject to standard transaction fees from your payment processor.

9. SubscribeStar

Patreon alternatives - Subscribestar

Source: SubscribeStar

SubscribeStar is an independent membership platform catering to educators, musicians, and visual artists.

Best for: Celebrities, vloggers, entertainers, coaches, teachers, radio hosts, gamers with streaming experience, individual preachers, event organizers, and clerical organizations.

Pros:

  • Liberal content policies — any legal content is allowed
  • Built-in stats and analytics tools
  • Post editor
  • Anti-scraping and anti-skimming content protection
  • Advanced integration options to third-party suppliers

Cons:

  • No PayPal or Stripe
  • Restrictions on payment withdrawal
  • Freedom with content policies means the platform has some association with more extremist ideologies

Pricing:

Charges a 5% flat service fee on every pledge, and a 2.9% + $0.30 transaction fee on successful payments. If you request a payout, you’ll be charged a payout fee (minimum $3) that varies based on the payout frequency and amount.

10. Kickstarter

Patreon alternatives - Kickstarte

Source: Kickstarter

Kickstarter helps breathe life into projects. It’s ideal for films, music, arts, theaters, games, comics, designs, photography, and so on.

Best for: Developers, designers, support specialists, writers, musicians, painters, poets, gamers, robot-builders, and many more

Pros:

  • Suitable for one-time projects
  • All projects are carefully vetted before publication

Cons:

  • Not all projects succeed
  • Not suitable for crowdfunding for charity as well as personal use
  • You only receive the funding if you meet your fundraising target
  • No monthly recurring subscription model
  • In case your project is successful, you’ll have to give physical rewards to your backers

Pricing:

If your project doesn’t meet its goal, you pay nothing. But if it succeeds, you’ll be charged a 5% fee, separate 3% to 5% payment processing fees, and $0.05 to $0.20 per pledge.

11. Indiegogo

Patreon alternatives - Indiegogo

Source: Indiegogo

Indiegogo supports entrepreneurs working to bring their dreams to life. It offers crowdfunding for both creative and charitable projects in tech and design before they go mainstream.

Best for: Charitable crowdfunding for entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business ideas

Pros:

  • No fees for charity campaigns
  • You can opt for either all-or-nothing or keep-it-all funding
  • Campaigns are not pre-screened, so you’ll have better prospects of success without an approval process
  • Allows for both rewards and equity crowdfunding

Cons:

  • Less traffic and visibility than Kickstarter
  • No options for a monthly recurring subscription
  • Communication between campaigners and their backers is limited

Pricing:

No monthly costs except for a 5% to 8% platform fee across all crowdfunding campaigns, and a 2.9% + $0.30 transaction fee

12. Gumroad

Patreon alternatives - Gumroad

Source: Gumroad

Gumroad is an e-commerce tool for content creators selling books, courses, music, and film.

Best for: Individual artists and content creators

Pros:

  • Simple to use
  • Free starter plan
  • Membership platform
  • Works well for both digital and physical products
  • You can embed Gumroad on your website

Cons:

  • No A/B split testing
  • Does not support ApplePay
  • Email support only
  • Limited help center

Pricing:

Free starter plan and a paid creator plan for $10 monthly. Standard transaction fees of 3.5% or 5% + $0.30 per charge apply.

13. Anchor Listener Support

Patreon alternatives - Anchor Listener Support

Source: Anchor

Anchor, the super simple mobile podcast production and distribution app, has a Patreon-style subscription service called Listener Support. Anchor creators can activate Listener Support to receive recurring donations from fans.

Best for: Podcasters who use Anchor.

Pros:

  • Cash out whenever you want – Anchor sends out money right away
  • Low fees
  • Supports Apple Pay & Google Pay
  • Clear community guidelines

Cons:

  • Only available for Anchor users
  • Not available globally (only available for US Anchor creators)
  • Low discoverability on platform

Pricing:

Free to use. Anchor takes a flat 4.5% fee (waived for 6 months from April 1st), alongside Stripe’s standard 5% +$0.10 processing fee.

Sticking with Big Tech: Facebook & YouTube

Big players like Facebook and YouTube have launched their own monthly subscription plans.

Facebook

Patreon alternatives - Facebook

Facebook lets audiences support pages with recurring monthly donations in exchange for badges, exclusive content, and personal interactions. But sadly, only pages that have been invited can use fan subscriptions. You can learn more about the service here.

YouTube

Patreon alternatives - Youtube

Once you hit 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of watch time, you can apply to the YouTube Partner Program. For more information, see here.

How To Pick The Best Platform For Yourself

What is the best Patreon alternative for you or your business?

Clearly, there’s no one-size-fits-all platform. The better question to ask is, what works best for your use case?

  • If you’re looking to sell an online course, go with a platform like Heights Platform or Podia. Both have the community aspect as well as features built around online education.
  • If you’re a marketer or solopreneur looking to build your community, you might opt for a platform like Tribe.
  • If you just want to fund your side-hustles or passions, look into Buy Me A Coffee or Ko-fi.

You have the vision. Check out what works best for you and most importantly, enjoy the creative process.

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