Kofi vs Patreon – Which One is Better for You? Full Breakdown

You can now teach online courses on how to make a living by selling creative content online. 

Whether your students are musicians, artists, bloggers, or gamers, they can use both Ko-fi and Patreon.

These platforms allow viewers, who like your content, to donate. This is a great source for a tiny, regular income. While both Ko-fi and Patreon are great platforms, only one will be more suitable for you.

This post will discuss the benefits, features, and pros and cons of Ko-Fi and Patreon. 

Fees4 and a half stars3 stars
Features3 stars4 stars
Third-party apps support3 stars4 and a half stars

This is just a brief overview of Ko-fi and Patreon. Let’s take a detailed look at each of the two platforms.

Ko-fi Review – Accept a Cup of Coffee

dedicated app partner program ko-fi Patreon virtual terminal add ko-fi single platform ko-fi patreon

Ko-fi is an online platform where an artist of any field can share their content and gather an audience. 

Most artists share their creativity online free of charge, as long as they own copyrights.

Platforms like Ko-fi allow artists to earn a tiny amount by sharing their talent. They can gather fans who donate money equal to the price of a cup of coffee

It is easy to set up an account on Ko-fi and connect it to your PayPal account. Fans can make direct payments with a single click of a button. 

Ko-fi supports one-time payments. 

As a content creator looking for a small monthly income, you can view this payment as a virtual tip-jar. This is way better than the paywall or subscription service mindset. 

Features of Ko-fi

  • Posts
  • Rewards
  • Direct Messages
  • Paywall
  • Commissions
  • Direct payment
  • Gallery
  • Memberships
  • Goals
  • Third-party integrations
  • Shop
  • Steam Alert
Pros Cons

Easy to set up

Zero fees


Offers a free account

Offers paywall content, memberships, and commissions
Maximum donations up to $3 only

No marketing tools

Benefits of Ko-fi

Ko-fi has two versions:

  • Standard free version
  • Ko-fi Gold

Our team has tested and highly recommends both versions. Each version provides unique features for your convenience. 

Let’s establish the key differences between these two. Ko-fi allows one-time payments whereas you have the option of monthly subscriptions with Ko-fi Gold. 

We highly recommend Gold because it allows you to set up your own donation price with multiple donation options. The Standard version fixes your donation price for you, €3 is the maximum donation amount.

Moreover, our team specifically prefers Gold because of its customizable options

For example:

You can choose an item for donations to personalize your page such as “Buy me a cup of tea” instead of “Buy me a cup of coffee”. 

Furthermore, you can accept commissions from Ko-fi Gold’s site. You can choose whether or not you want commissions and select available products.

The list of features does not end here. Ko-fi provides a safe space for you to:

  • Share your work
  • Sell products, memberships, and commissions
  • Accept donations
  • Set up crowdfunding goals  

Some of the main benefits from Ko-fi’s features allow you to:

  • Direct, instant donations through Stripe or PayPal
  • Engage with your audience through direct messages
  • Display your best work on your Gallery
  • Crowdfund expensive projects
  • Share your progress and work through posts
  • Give rewards to your fans
  • Allow your supporters to purchase your work for a commission
  • Earn monthly through memberships
  • Share exclusive content through Paywall
  • Get integrations for third parties such as Discord
  • Make sales of digital and physical products 

Factors to Consider Before you Decide to Buy Ko-fi

Ko-fi Gold Fee 

The Gold subscription is the only charge that Ko-fi takes in the form of subscription payments. 

The Gold Plan charges $6/month and offers some extra features such as: 

  • Personalize price settings
  • Allow supporters to send monthly payments
  • Commissions tool
  • Customizable pledge button
  • Social links
  • Ad-free
  • Google Analytics 
  • Extra Gallery features

Ko-fi fee 

This platform is free of any charge. A charge is taken during payment processing from supporters. However, the transaction fee is what the payment processors charge.

Ko-fi does not take any transaction charges. 


Ko-fi Features 

Unlike many other platforms that force you to continually upgrade your work, Ko-fi provides you with stability

You are free to work at your own pace at a constant level.

Ko-fi features
Ko-fi features

Third-party Integrations 

Ko-fi works with and supports:

  • Twitter
  • YouTube
  • WordPress
  • Facebook.  

You can share your Ko-fi page on your own website through a button code or a direct link

It is not developer-friendly and does not have an Application Programming Interface (API), which means that it cannot work with other platforms. 

However, Ko-fi does have a JavaScript-powered button that you can add to your website.

What Do the Customers Think?

Customers have had a positive experience with Ko-fi and have reported that it is easy to use. Both the free and premium versions have great features.

The premium version has more customizable options and features offered at an affordable price. Ko-fi also does not charge transaction fees. It is charged by a payment processor only.

Ko-fi makes instant payments through PayPal.

Some of the customer reviews we found online include:

Ko-fi social proof
Ko-fi social proof
Ko-fi social proof
Ko-fi social proof

Best Online Business Platform

Ko-fi is a great place for artists who can share their work with their supporters. Artists can excel on this platform a lot by getting their work recognized. We highly recommend Ko-fi because It is free and has never charged transaction fees as well.

Patreon Review – Facilitate your Creative Process

ko-fi Patreon next post transaction fee pay the similar story ko-fi Patreon living solely more platforms

Patreon is a top contender when it comes to donation-based platforms. It hosts a majority of vloggers, podcasters, artists, and musicians.

The Patreon market has grown to be diverse and saturated since it has been around for nearly a decade. It provides artists with business tools to run subscription services for their content. 

Your supporters can subscribe to your Patreon page to stay up-to-date with your content. Through this scheme, artists earn a monthly income.

Artists on Patreon need to create a series of tiers that each have their own monthly fees. These tiers have benefits that are set by the artist.

An important factor to consider is the commitment that Patreon requires. You need to update content regularly and add extra content for your high-paying tiers. 

Moreover, Patreon takes 5% to 12% of your income excluding payment processing or PayPal fees. 

Features of Patreon

  • Creator Page host
  • Communication tools
  • Workshops
  • Membership tiers
  • Insights and Analytics
  • Promo tool for Special Offers
  • Workshops led by creators
  • Third-party integrations 
  • Customer Support
Pros Cons
Reliable payments

You can set your own prices and process payments easily

Built-in communication tools

Supports niche creators

Customizable funding goals

5% to 12% income is cut

Content restriction policies

Benefits of Patreon

We believe that the monthly payment method is the best strategy for creators. You receive money from your supporters regularly and consistently. It ensures monthly support for you as a creator.

Our team highly recommends Patreon because it offers mobile apps and desktop support. However, you need to access it through their site on your desktop. 

Support for iOS and Android devices allows you to check and edit your subscriptions on the go. 

Fake fans are the only thing about Patreon due to which our team recommends a Patreon alternative such as Ko-Fi. 

These fake supporters pledge money for one month to get access to your content that best interests them. Then they cancel the pledged money and move on to other creators. 

Factors to Consider Before you Decide to Buy Patreon

Patreon Fees

This platform offers three subscription-based fee structures:

  • Lite: Simple tools to get recurring support from your supporters and it cuts 5% of your monthly income.
  • Pro: Unlocks more features and cuts 8% of your monthly income.
  • Premium: Access to all Lite and Pro features and cuts 12% ($300 minimum) of your monthly income.
supplemental source supporters pay same question

This platform processes payments through PayPal. Patreon divides payments into batches to allow patrons to pay minimum transaction fees.

Platform Fee

PayPal charges are costly:

  • Transaction Charges: 2.9%+$0.30
  • Currency Conversion Charges: 2%-3% lower than market rates 
  • Foreign Currency Charges: Fixed $1
paypal payments

You can get PayPal Payments Pro to handle subscriptions for an additional $10/month.

The subscription version on Patreon allows you to get monthly income and you do not have to accept tips or donations a single time.

Patreon itself cuts 5% of your monthly income. For US-based users, you will be charged $0.25 when you withdraw cash through your PayPal or Patreon account.

International users are charged $0.25 or 1% for the total amount received per month with an upper limit of $20/deposit.


You can create and share posts that are visible to your paying supporters or others in general. Patreon offers content creators to give rewards to their supporters through exclusive content.

There is a community page available where you can interact with your supporters and entertain their queries. 

Once you get accustomed to creating content on Patreon, this platform helps you make a decent amount.  

Patreon also offers an incentive for supporters that switch to higher-paying tiers. 


Third-Party Integration

Patreon supports integration with popular platforms with customized plugins and scripts. As a content writer who uses WordPress or a vlogger with a YouTube Channel, you can benefit from this platform.

It has an app directory for third parties that is built-in to support platforms such as:

  • Discord
  • Google Sheets
  • Vimeo
  • MailChimp
  • WordPress plugin
  • Patron plugin
  • Discourse
  • Automated Early Access
  • Patronizer
  • TubeBuddy
  • Patreon Lens
  • Crowdcast
  • Bonjoro
  • Polls & Voting
  • Itch.io
  • Private RSS Feed
  • Sonix
  • StreamLabs
  • Manage and Track your Benefits
  • Goodbits
  • MCLink

What Do the Customers Think?

Customers appreciate Patreon highly because of its great communication tools. It keeps supporters connected with creators and makes them feel as though they are part of a special community.

Moreover, it allows creators to set their own prices through different tiers and handles finances for them through PayPal.

Some of the many positive customer reviews we found online are:

patreon social proof
patreon social proof
patreon social proof
patreon social proof

Best Online Service for Artists

Patreon has facilitated many creators over the years by providing a steady source of income. It hosts communities where creators can engage with their supporters and provide them with content.

Ko-Fi vs Patreon – Buyers’ Guide

Platforms, where artists share their content with the world for a stable income, come with useful features, and noteworthy aspects.

As an online course creator, you should consider some of these important factors before recommending them to your students. 

These factors include:

Fee Structure

Remember that your students join such platforms to earn money. Since platforms such as Patreon are integrated with online payment processors that also charge fees, charges can become overwhelming.

There is not a lot of money that can be generated from selling art online, especially if your students are beginners. 

Therefore, the platforms that you recommend should not incur high costs. 


If you are willing to pay a significant amount to platforms that help your art reach your fans, then make sure it offers many features. 

You should consider a platform that offers:

  • Managing finances
  • Subscription management tools
  • Communication tools
  • Third-party app integrations
  • Click buttons
  • Customizable memberships

Third-Party Apps

Plugins and scripts from third parties are essential when it comes to sites that offer services for you to create and sell content

If the website or app does not have external integrations then it cannot support your content. 

For example:

Integration of YouTube to facilitate a vlogger who creates content in the form of YouTube videos.

We have created a VERY detailed guide for you in which we talk about every single thing you need to know about making money by creating, selling, and managing online courses.

Final Verdict

This concludes our post for Ko-Fi and Patreon.

Both Ko-Fi and Patreon are great platforms for you to create and share engaging content with your supporters.

Patreon offers a lot of value for the charges through its innovative features. However, it deducts a significant amount of your income and is costly. Therefore, at the end of the day, we highly recommend Ko-Fi

Ko-Fi allows you to earn a small amount from a wide range of audiences. Since the donations are small, they attract many supporters to pay for content that they like.