Circle vs Mighty Networks 2024: Which Comes Out on Top?

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When building your online community, you want to choose the right platform for your project.

Circle and Mighty Networks are two of the most popular choices right now, but which one is the best option for you? What features do they offer, and how do they compare?

To help you make an informed decision, we’ve created a detailed Circle vs Mighty Networks comparison. We’ll cover all the important aspects of both platforms and discuss their pros and cons.

We’ve done extensive research and testing to get all the details for you. So let’s dive in and find out which online community platform is the better choice for your business.

Circle vs Mighty Networks Summary

4.6

Ease of Use

Features

Customer Support

Pricing

4.4

Ease of Use

Features

Customer Support

Pricing


Pros of Circle

  • Super easy to use
  • Great end-user experience
  • Better monetization tools
  • Member tags and custom fields
  • Automation workflows
  • Single sign-on integrations 
  • Public API access

Pros of Mighty Networks

  • Create polls and quizzes
  • Robust reporting and analytics
  • Unlimited admins and members
  • More reasonably priced

What Are Circle and Mighty Networks?

Circle (or Circle.so) and Mighty Networks are both cloud-based online community builders that offer the same core features:

  • Keep your community organized
  • Create engaging posts and discussions
  • Host events and live streams
  • Create online courses
  • Mobile apps
  • Charge for access
  • Manage and moderate your community
Circle’s homepage
Circle’s homepage
Mighty Networks’ homepage
Mighty Networks’ homepage

At a high level, both platforms are very similar, and the differences are only subtle.

For example, Circle supports features like public API and single sign-on, allowing it to play better with third-party tools and integrations. Mighty Networks, on the other hand, has more beginner-friendly pricing.

So, let’s explore their features in more depth to find out what sets them apart from each other.

Ease of Use

When choosing a platform for your online community, the last thing you want is to spend days learning a complex system.

Fortunately, both Circle and Mighty Networks are designed for non-technical users, so an average person without specialized technical skills can use them.

In fact, both platforms have a similar community interface, with your spaces listed in the sidebar on the left while posts and other content appear on the right.

Circle’s user interface
Circle’s user interface
Mighty Networks’ user interface
Mighty Networks’ user interface

However, Circle offers a more thoughtful UI design, allowing you to perform admin tasks easily and with fewer clicks. Accessing analytics and moderation options, for instance, requires a simple click on the site’s title. In contrast, Mighty Networks involves navigating through the user profile and network settings before reaching these options.

Furthermore, Circle excels in organizing admin options logically, making it easy to find desired features. Its settings display intuitive menu options, such as Onboarding and Custom Domain, which make it clear what they do.

In contrast, Mighty Networks has vague categories, such as Global Features and Premium Features.

Additionally, you need to navigate back to the network settings page each time you want to access another category. So, you’ll need to spend extra time locating features and getting familiar with the platform.

A walk-through of admin options in Circle vs Mighty Networks

For end-users, the community interface in both platforms is the same for members as it is for hosts, except they don’t see the admin settings.

While the experience is overall good in both cases, Circle does a better job. It has a cleaner design, and the options to create a new post are more easily accessible.

More importantly, Mighty Networks has this odd user experience where articles and course lessons open in a half-screen mode. Circle, on the other hand, opens these in a separate page, making it easier to read and navigate to other sections.

An article in a half-screen modal in Mighty Networks
An article in a half-screen modal in Mighty Networks

Overall, both Circle and Mighty Networks require minimal technical skills to use the platform, but Circle offers a more well-thought-out UI design, making it easier for admins to manage their online communities and for members to navigate the content.

Online Community Builder

Both Circle and Mighty Networks offer plenty of tools for community building and engagement. Yet, there are some significant differences between the two, which we’ll discuss in this section.

However, to start, both platforms cover the most essential community-building options:

  • You can use a custom domain for your community.
  • You can keep your community public vs private.
  • You can add your logo and change colors to match your brand.

Now, let’s review the specifics.

Community Organization

Community organization tools are important because they make it easier to explore your community and improve engagement.

Both platforms allow you to create what they call Spaces. They are like sections within your community, and all the community content lives inside them.

You can control privacy and access settings for spaces. For example, you can create private spaces or open spaces, or even secret spaces, allow all community members or just admins to invite others, and even require payment for access.

However, creating community spaces works differently on both platforms. In Circle, each space must be one of five types, and you can create multiple spaces of each type:

  • Posts
  • Events
  • Chats
  • Courses
  • Members
Spaces and Groups in Circle
Spaces and Groups in Circle

In Mighty Networks, all spaces are created equal, but each space can have multiple sections:

  • Feed
  • Events
  • Course
  • Chat
  • Members

These sections are displayed in a horizontal menu inside your space.

Spaces and Collections in Mighty Networks
Spaces and Collections in Mighty Networks

Additionally, both platforms let you group spaces together and create a hierarchy within your community. The feature is called Groups in Circle and Collections in Mighty Networks, but they serve the same purpose.

Overall, both approaches work well and give you the same level of flexibility, and it’s more a matter of preference. We like Circle’s approach better because it simplifies the member experience.

Having said that, Mighty Networks has a couple of useful organizational tools that aren’t available in Circle:

  • Highlighted hashtags: For discussion feeds, you can assign hashtags to your posts and your members can find content based on these. There’s nothing similar on Circle.
  • Discovery page: You can create a separate page to show the most important elements—top posts, top members, hashtags, and more—in your community or a particular space.

The above-mentioned features make Mighty Networks slightly better in terms of community organization.

Content and Engagement

Content is the pillar of any online community, and it’s important that your platform supports different content options.

With both Circle and Mighty Networks, you can create quick posts as well as full articles.

For quick posts, you can write text, add images, videos, GIFs, or files, and mention other members. You can publish your post immediately or schedule it.

However, Circle’s post editor does a few things better. The same editor is designed to create both posts and articles.

It doesn’t just make the experience better, but it also opens up all the formatting and embed options for creating quick posts. You can save them as drafts as well.

Circle's post editor
Circle’s post editor

Mighty Networks, on the other hand, has a separate editor for posts and articles.

With the posts editor, you can’t format your text, embed Instagram posts or Google Maps, add a hyperlink, or save the post as a draft. The article editor does have all these options, though.

Mighty Networks’ post editor
Mighty Networks’ post editor

Another difference is regarding their AI writing assistants. While both platforms have integrated AI into their editors, Circle’s AI tool, content co-pilot, lets you not only enhance content but also write content, generate ideas, create outlines, and much more.

On the other hand, the AI assistant from Mighty Networks offers only limited functionality. It allows basic tasks such as correcting grammar, adjusting tone, etc. but lacks the capability for content creation.

Circle's Content Co-Pilot
Circle’s AI writing assistant

Having said that, Mighty Networks supports more content types. Apart from quick posts and articles, it lets you create various types of polls:

  • Question
  • Multiple choice
  • Hot/cold
  • Percentage
Questions and polls in Mighty Networks
Questions and polls in Mighty Networks

Both of these community platforms support events and live streaming, with similar capabilities, except for a few minor differences in how they work. Here’s what you can do with both:

  • Create in-person and live events
  • Create one-time or recurring events
  • Members can RSVP for events
  • Use native live streaming for your events
  • Start instant live streams in your community
  • Record a live stream and post it in your community
  • Send email reminders about the event
Creating an event in Circle
Creating an event in Circle

Overall, both Circle and Mighty Networks have similar capabilities for content and engagement. There are a couple of differences, such as Circle’s more powerful post editor, while Mighty Networks supports polls and questions.

Online Courses

Both Mighty Networks and Circle support online course creation, with a few differences between them.

They both have a drag-and-drop course builder to structure courses into sections and lessons. They also allow you to host your video content and create lessons with text, audio, and video content. You can also attach files and enable comments in the lessons.

Circle’s course builder
Circle’s course builder

When it comes to learning tools, both platforms have limitations, but Mighty Networks does a better job here. It offers features for creating quizzes, content dripping, and lesson locking.

Mighty Networks supports content dripping and locking
Mighty Networks supports content dripping and locking

However, to foster engagement, both Circle and Mighty Networks let you integrate your course content with other community tools, including discussion feeds, live sessions, and group chats. This makes these platforms great for community-driven cohort courses where students can connect, collaborate, and learn together.

From a user experience standpoint, Circle’s course player outshines Mighty Networks. The course player in Circle looks more elegant and also has better navigation.

Moreover, Circle supports automated transcriptions for all the videos, allowing users to search inside videos and jump to relevant sections.

Circle’s course player interface
Circle’s course player interface

In contrast, Mighty Networks’ course player has some shortcomings in terms of design and usability. Upon clicking a lesson, it initially opens in a slide-in window that occupies only half of the screen, lacking a visible navigation area. Only by clicking the Expand icon can users access the full course player experience.

In summary, both Circle and Mighty Networks can be used to create courses in your community. However, Circle has an edge in terms of the course player design and user experience.

Additionally, with Circle, you can integrate with popular course platforms like Teachable and Thinkific. So, if you don’t want to use Circle Courses for any reason, you can use an external platform instead.

Messaging and Notifications

Both Mighty Networks and Circle have one-on-one and group messaging features.

For group chats, both work similarly, except Circle supports a few additional features, such as chat threads, member mentions, and message pinning.

Circle’s group chat feature
Circle’s group chat feature

Now, let’s move on to notifications.

Both community builders allow members to receive email and push notifications. Plus, they can select what activities and spaces they want to be notified about.

Member notification settings in Mighty Networks
Member notification settings in Mighty Networks

Overall, both platforms make it easy for members to get notified about the activities that matter to them.

Mobile Apps

One of the most important offerings of both platforms is their free app for iOS and Android users.

The apps allow you and your members to access your community on mobile devices and stay updated about the latest activities through push notifications.

With each app, community members can create new posts, react to discussions, send private messages, attend live sessions, and watch courses.

The app’s interface is optimized for mobile devices, and navigating between spaces and performing actions, such as creating a new post, are straightforward.

Circle app’s user interface
Circle app’s user interface
Mighty Networks app interface
Mighty Networks app interface

Having said that, Mighty Networks’ app also includes all the admin features and settings. While this makes it possible to make changes to your community and even build it entirely on a mobile device, it isn’t a great idea for a few reasons:

  • Complex tasks, such as creating a space or adding lessons to courses, are troublesome to execute on smaller devices.
  • The Mighty Networks app loads slowly at times and can feel a bit buggy.
  • Members’ login experience isn’t as smooth, and they see multiple options, which can be confusing.

As a result, we believe that a separate app for admins to build and manage their communities would be a better solution.

The Circle app, on the other hand, focuses on the end-user experience, and it executes this very well.

Finally, both platforms let you create branded apps for your community.

Community Builder: The Bottom Line

When it comes to community building, it’s a close call between Mighty Networks vs Circle, and you can’t really go wrong with either of them.

Both platforms have all the features you need for building your community:

  • Creating content
  • Hosting events
  • Creating courses
  • Member notifications
  • Mobile apps.

They offer similar capabilities, with a few differences here and there.

Sales and Marketing

Both Circle and Mighty Networks come with built-in monetization tools. Both allow you to create simple landing pages and charge payments, which is what we’ll focus on in this section.

Landing Pages

Mighty Networks has a page builder that lets you build a simple landing page for your community. It has a couple of pre-built sections, including a hero section, a text block, and pricing plans, and you don’t get any real customization options here.

Mighty Networks’ landing page builder
Mighty Networks’ landing page builder

In Circle, the feature is called Lock Screen, and again, the page-building capabilities are limited.

It supports just four page sections: banner section, description, course lessons, and call-to-action (CTA) sections. You can customize these sections a bit more, but nothing too significant.

Circle’s landing page builder
Circle’s landing page builder

However, it’s more useful because you can use it to create landing pages for each space or pricing plan, and you have a lot of flexibility in that sense. On the other hand, Mighty Networks lets you create just one landing page for your community.

Payments and Checkouts

When it comes to payments, there are a few similarities between the two platforms:

  • You can bundle multiple spaces together and sell a package.
  • You can process payments through Stripe. No PayPal option is available.
  • You can charge one-time or recurring payments.
  • For subscriptions, you can charge monthly and/or yearly and also offer a free trial.
  • You can charge in multiple currencies.

So, both platforms cover the essential features, but the similarities end here. And it’s Circle that shines beyond this point.

  • Circle’s subscription options provide complete flexibility in choosing the billing period (daily, weekly, monthly, annual, etc.).
  • You can group multiple plans together and let your members switch between them in a single click.
  • You can create discount coupons in Circle.
  • Circle supports tax collection through its Stripe integration, while you’ll need a third-party app, Quaderno, to do it in Mighty Networks.

When it comes to the checkout page, Circle again has the upper hand. Circle’s checkout page is more streamlined than Mighty Networks. The account creation and payment happen on the same page and look more elegant as well.

A sample checkout page created on Circle
A sample checkout page created on Circle

On the other hand, Mighty Networks’ checkout page has multiple steps. In fact, step two asks users to upload their profile picture, which doesn’t make sense and is definitely bad for conversions.

Step 1: Create an account
Step 1: Create an account
Step 2: Upload a profile picture
Step 2: Upload a profile picture
Step 3: Complete the payment
Step 3: Complete the payment

Now, there’s something interesting that Mighty Networks has Circle doesn’t: an Ambassador Program. This feature lets you provide badges and custom rewards to your members for referring other members.

Having said that, none of the two apps offers full-fledged referral or affiliate-marketing tools.

Overall, Circle has an edge over Mighty Networks in terms of landing pages, payments, and checkouts.

Reporting and Administration

In this section, we’ll compare Circle vs Mighty Networks in terms of the tools they offer for reporting and administration.

Community Management Tools

Both platforms provide essential tools for managing your community and members:

  • You can add admins and moderators to your community. While admins can access all settings and features, moderators can control the content and members.
  • Both platforms allow members to report content and moderators to remove content and ban members. However, Circle also lets you flag members and publish their posts after manual approval.
  • Essential member-management actions, such as inviting members, managing their profiles, or messaging them, can be performed on both platforms.

However, Circle has more features to take the whole administration stuff to the next level.

The first one is member tags. You can assign tags to your members and categorize them for easier management.

The second one is custom profile fields. This feature allows you to collect additional information from your members, which can make it visible to everyone or keep it private to admins.

The third one is activity scores that let you measure the engagement level of your community members.

The fourth and most important one is Circle Workflows. Workflows has dozens of triggers and actions, allowing you to automatically perform actions based on certain events inside your community.

For example, you can create auto-messages that are sent to new members when they join your community or even a space. Similarly, you can tag members when they buy a subscription or attend an event.

Automation workflow to message members when they join a space
Automation workflow to message members when they join a space

Workflows also has a bulk action module that lets you select a specific segment of your users at once and perform an action on them at once, like sending a message, adding a tag, removing them from a space, canceling their subscription, etc.

While Mighty Networks also has a feature called Member Categories to categorize members based on profession, interest, etc., there can only be one active category at a time, so it’s not as flexible as tags, and there are no automation features.

Overall, Circle provides best-in-class tools for managing your community and members, while Mighty Networks is limited to basic management.

Reporting and Analytics

Both Circle and Mighty Networks have dedicated reporting and analytics tools.

With Circle, you have an overview page that displays high-level statistics, such as daily active members, number of new members, top posts, and top members.

Besides that, there are four specific sections where you can get more detailed information:

  • Members
  • Posts and comments
  • Messages
  • Spaces
Circle Analytics Overview tab
Circle Analytics Overview tab

With Mighty Networks, you get an Overview page and a bunch of other reports at the community level. In addition, similar reports are available for the spaces, allowing you to track the activities of a specific community space or a group of spaces.

Mighty Networks Overview dashboard
Mighty Networks Overview dashboard

While both platforms have essential analytics tools, Mighty Networks outperforms Circle in a few ways:

  • Mighty Networks lets you see detailed analytics for your spaces, as well, while Circle just provides you with an overview of how many posts or comments each space has.
  • It provides detailed analytics for your events, live streams, and courses, all of which aren’t available in Circle.
  • Mighty Networks reports have more visual tools and graphs, making it easier to drive insights.

Third-Party Integrations

This is another area where Circle is a clear winner over Mighty Networks.

With Mighty Networks, you get two main options:

  • Connect with tracking tools, such as Google Analytics and Facebook Pixel
  • Connect to third-party apps via Zapier

And that’s it. While Circle also supports these integrations, it goes much further:

  • Single sign-on (SSO) integrations let your users log in with their existing accounts on popular membership platforms like Thinkific, Teachable, and MemberPress. There’s even a custom single sign-on option.
  • iFrame widgets let you embed your entire Circle community, a specific space, or comments from a specific post.
  • Circle’s Public API provides developers with access to the platform’s backend, enabling them to build custom integrations and applications.
Circle’s Single Sign-on Integrations
Circle’s Single Sign-on Integrations

Overall, Circle’s extensive integration options make it both more compatible with your current tech stack and more extendable.

Customer Support

Both community builders’ customer support services are almost at the same level.

Neither of the two offers live chat support, even though both have help widgets inside the admin area from where you can quickly get in touch with their teams. And the response time is usually fast.

Circle’s support widget
Circle’s support widget

Besides this, both have comprehensive knowledge bases where you can find answers to almost everything. The articles come with clear instructions and step-by-step processes.

Finally, both Circle and Mighty have engaged user communities where you can ask questions and get help from admins and other community hosts.

Regardless of the platform you choose for your brand, we highly recommend that you join both communities anyway to learn as much as you can about community building.

Mighty Community
Mighty Community

To sum up, both platforms offer reliable customer support, and there is no significant difference between the two in terms of support quality.

Pricing Plans

When it comes to pricing, both Circle and Mighty Networks offer monthly subscription plans.

Starting with the Basic plan, Circle charges $49 per month plus a 4% fee, while Mighty Networks’ Community plan is slightly cheaper at $39 per month plus a 3% fee.

Both plans have similar features, but it’s worth noting that Mighty Networks allows you to have unlimited members, while Circle supports only up to 100 members.

Circle’s pricing plans
Circle’s pricing plans
Mighty Networks’ pricing plans
Mighty Networks’ pricing plans

Moving on to the higher tiers, Circle’s most popular option is the Professional plan, which costs $99 per month plus a 2% fee. Meanwhile, Mighty Networks offers the Business plan, which costs $119 per month plus a 2% fee.

Both plans are comparable and include a similar set of features (e.g., courses and live streams). However, Mighty Networks offers more generous limits on storage as well as number of moderators and admins.

Circle ProfessionalMighty Business
MembersUnlimitedUnlimited
Moderators10Unlimited
Admins3Unlimited
Total storage100 GB1 TB
Monthly live streaming20 hours20 hours

The only thing that works in Circle’s favor here is that the Professional plan allows you to remove Circle branding, which is available only on Mighty Pro ($30K/year), a custom plan that also provides branded mobile apps for your community.

Lastly, Circle has additional plans that are more suitable for larger communities, offering features like Workflows and API. Circle’s Business plan costs $199/month, while the Enterprise plan costs $399/month.

And like Mighty Pro, there’s Circle Plus ($30K/year) that lets you get your own community apps.

In conclusion, while both platforms offer similar pricing plans, Mighty Networks provides better value for money. It offers more generous limits and has an edge over Circle in this regard.

Circle vs Mighty Networks: The Final Verdict

In this guide, we’ve compared Circle and Mighty Networks based on every single aspect.

While both platforms are similar in many ways, Circle emerges as the clear winner in most regards, be it the ease of use, end-user experience, monetization features, community management tools, or third-party integrations.

Moreover, it’s suitable for any type of community, regardless of whether it is managed by online creators or a SaaS brand. If you’d like to give it a try, you can start a free trial by clicking below.

On the other hand, Mighty Networks is more budget-friendly than Circle. Plus, it does better in specific areas, such as more powerful analytics.

If you’re an online creator looking for a more affordable option, you should explore Mighty Networks.

We hope this guide provided you with everything you needed to choose between Mighty Networks vs Circle. Which platform are you going to use? Let us know in the comments!

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