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Ko-fi vs Patreon: Which To Choose? Learn 11 Differences!

March 21, 2023

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Hi. I’m Seth Godin. I’m a teacher, and I do projects. For more than thirty years, I’ve been trying to turn on lights, inspire people and teach them how to level up – Seth Godin

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A list looks like this:

  • Marketing Is about The Stories You Tell
  • Do Permission Marketing
  • Invent, Implement and Sell the Ideas
  • Sell What People Want, Not What They Need
  • Keep Your Customers Happy
  • Deliver Basic Human Wants

A list looks like this:

  1. Marketing Is about The Stories You Tell
  2. Marketing Is about The Stories You Tell
  3. Marketing Is about The Stories You Tell
  4. Marketing Is about The Stories You Tell
  5. Marketing Is about The Stories You Tell
  6. Marketing Is about The Stories You Tell

There are many kinds of artists and creators in the world. Many of them are so talented and creative too. But there was a time when these people didn't get proper appreciation and attention from people.

Because it was not possible for them to share their creativity with all the people. Little of them could do so and got fame for it. Some were demotivated from their families because of less income.

Others were not motivated because of this. And they could not even earn enough to feed themselves through it. That's why at that time people could not think about these works as a profession or career for their life and lost their passion too.

But with the development of technologies and social media, there are many platforms created only to support and motivate these artists. Through these platforms, artists can share their creations with all kinds of people easily from their home. They can sell them to earn money.

Along with that, in some platforms, they can get donations from their supporters too. Because of all of these facilities, these kinds of platforms are very much popular and highly appreciated by people.

Among all of those popular sites, Ko-fi and Patreon are the most popular and most liked ones. If anyone asks any artists to say the name of the best two platforms like these, then almost everyone would mention Ko-fi and Patreon.

Ko-fi and Patreon have gained popularity because of the amazing features and services they provide to artists. Both of them are useful and have many advantages.

But if you are asked to choose the best one of them, which one will you choose? Well, it's not an easy question at all. Many people would fall into a dilemma to answer this question.

Because there is no specific guideline from which people can easily know which to choose. But there are many people like us who want to know them so that they can use the better one.

That's why here we have presented comparison guidelines between Ko-fi and Patreon from which you can easily get to know which one you should choose.

Do you also want to learn the differences between Ko-fi vs Patreon?

Well, there are many features through which we can easily differentiate between them. Like, as platform fees, integration with various sites, cash-out facilities, important tools, type of creators, minimum need of balance, crowdfunding, subscription type, type of device, commitment about the publishing, membership tiers, etc.

Wait! This is just a summary of our article. To know the details, let's get into the article!

What Are Ko-fi And Patreon?

If you are a new artist and unaware of the platforms, then don't worry. Because before going into the details, here we have discussed what Ko-fi is and what Patreon is. It will help you to learn about it in a better way.

Let's first learn about Ko-fi.

Ko-fi is a service online where a creator can easily be connected with his fans. More than 500,000 creators use Ko-fi to earn. You will first need to open an account. Then, you can post your creative content in an easy way. And it also allows your fans to send you donations in a unique way to support you.

As you are always connected to your fans, whenever you post content they will get to know about it too. So, you don't have to struggle. Moreover, you can even sell those contents online and can get the payment instantly.

It also allows you to earn through crowdfunding. Ko-fi also has many membership facilities through which you can get access to many creative features. There is no hassle to contact any third parties.

Well, you might think Ko-fi and Buy me a coffee are the same. But they are not despite the similarities in their names. There are also many differences between ko-fi vs buy me a coffee, just like Ko-fi and Patreon.

After Ko-fi, now let's learn about Patreon.

Patreon is also a platform like Ko-fi but has some different features. In fact, Patreon is also popular as Ko-fi. More than 300000 people are using Patreon. Patreon makes it easier for the creators to get their payment easily.

Even it also helps the creators, they can easily be connected with their fans. The creators can also get donations. There are also membership plans available on Patreon. That's why it is also called a membership platform. The users can easily get their payment monthly.

So, you can see that both Ko-fi and Patreon are amazing in many ways. Is ko-fi safe? Yes, both Ko-fi and Patreon are safe to use. But which one is better?

Is Ko-fi better than Patreon? Or is Patreon better than Ko-fi?

Well, before getting to any conclusion, let's discuss thoroughly which one should be better. Let's learn all the differences between Patreon vs Kofi, so that we can easily choose the better one!

Ko-fi vs Patreon: 11 Main Differences to Know!

We have already got to know about some ideas for Ko-fi and Patreon. But these ideas are never enough to differentiate between them.


Well, there are many features of them that are differentiable. Here we have presented all those dissimilarities in an organized way through a table.

Let's take a look at the basic differences between them:

Wanna learn about these differences in detail? Then worry not. Because here we have discussed these differences in detail. So that you can choose more accurately.

Let's start!

Platform Fee

Platform fee is a very important feature to choose the best one. Because normally, people are attracted to something that is less costly and that cuts less money too.

Almost every platform takes a commission on the content the creators are selling, the donations the people are giving, etc. But the amount of this commission is different for different sites. And Ko-fi and Patreon also take a commission.

Ko-fi takes 0-5% commission at every payment process and 3% payment processing. Let us make you understand in an easy way.

A creator can sell his content easily in Ko-fi. And he will get the payment easily too. A creator doesn't have to worry about it at all. But to do this, Ko-fi takes some commission of the total payment.

Whenever a creator gets the payment after selling anything, Ko-fi will automatically take 0 to 5% commission of the total payment. After that because of the process of the payments, Ko-fi will again take 3% of the payment.

But there is an advantage of Ko-fi. Ko-fi doesn't cut or take any kind of commissions on donations. So, it's a very good thing for Ko-fi users.

Patreon takes more commission than Ko-fi. It takes a 9-12% commission at every payment. And it also takes the payment processing fees of about 2.9% + US$0.30 per successful payment over US$3 and 5% + US$0.10 per successful payment US$3 or less. And here is one more thing that you should know about Patreon.

Along with the payment, Patreon also takes the same amount of commission for donations too.

So, Patreon takes more commission than Ko-fi at every payment and it also takes a commission in donations but Ko-fi doesn't take so.

Integration with various sites

Integration with different sites is very important for these platforms. It helps the creators to go through those important sites to share their content easily. It also helps them to be connected with their fans.

So, it makes sharing easier. And as a result, the creators can sell their products more and can get more donations too. So, it's a very important feature too.

Let's learn about the sites that are integrated with Ko-fi and Patreon.

The sites that are integrated with Ko-fi are Twitter, Google Analytics, Tumbler, Discord, WordPress, Facebook, Zapier, YouTube, Stream Alerts, Instagram Bio, PayPal/Stripe, etc.

And the sites that are integrated with Patreon are Zapier, Vimeo, Lens, Crowdcast, Stream labs, Google Analytics, MailChimp, Discord, WordPress, ConvertKit,  Discourse, and Many other Social Media Accounts like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. It is also integrated with many other resources too.

We can notice that the sites that are integrated with Patreon are more important and useful in sharing. But the sites that are integrated with Ko-fi are less important and less useful in sharing. And, as Patreon is integrated with many social media, sharing becomes easier for it.

And because of all of this, sharing is smoother and easier on Patreon than on Ko-fi. So, we can say that Ko-fi has a weaker integration system than Patreon.

So, this is a very big advantage for Patreon users.

Cash-out Facilities

Well, many think that cash-out is not so much an important thing. But it's not true. Rather it's a very important thing for many people. Because many people don't like the hassles of any kind of payment process.

Some want to withdraw their money instantly whenever they get the payment. So that they can easily spend the money on the emergency.

For these kinds of people, Ko-fi has the best cash-out system. Because in Ko-fi, the payment process is direct through Paypal and Stripe. And user can easily withdraw their money instantly too. So, Ko-fi users can use their money whenever they want.

But there are also some people who don't like this. They love to withdraw their money monthly and then they spend their money by planning. So that they can save some of them too.

And to meet this demand of these people, Patreon is there. Because in Patreon, people can withdraw their money from their account on the 1st of the month or monthly through PayPal, Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express. The payment process is also direct here. And the withdrawal can be manual or automatic.

So, in Ko-fi, instant cash out is available and in Patreon, it's not available, the cash out is on a monthly basis.

Important Tools

Though how many features a platform can have, if that platform doesn't have any effective tool, the platform is not of no use. So, a platform should have many important tools through which a user can post their content in an effective way. So, let's see what kind of tools Ko-fi and Patreon have.

Ko-fi has many important tools. It has a Creator dashboard (includes analytics), community feed, Set up a Shop to sell your Merchandize, direct messaging, Paid Requests, Public and gated posts, and Crowdfunding Goals.

And the tools that Patreon has are the Creator dashboard (includes analytics), Poll creation, Public and gated posts, community feed, Patreon Lens, messaging, tracking, Reward fulfillment, and Merch Store.

Both of them have many important tools. But the tools that Ko-fi has are more useful. That's why Ko-fi has more important tools than Patreon.

Type of creators

Both Ko-fi and Patreon are used by different kinds of creators like artists, musicians, developers, streamers, podcasters, writers, cosplayers, communities, etc.

But not all these creators are of the same type. Well, we wanna mean that there are two types of creators. One who wants to post their content frequently or regularly. And another type is those who post their content when they wish to. It can be after days, months, or years.

Ko-fi is suitable for both kinds of creators. It is mostly suitable for those creators who post their creations casually.

And Patreon is suitable for those creators who are very serious about posting their creations. They post their content on a daily or monthly basis. So, if you are this type of creator, Patreon is best for you.

So, Ko-fi is best for Casual Creators and Patreon is best for regular creators.

Minimum need of Balance

There is a thing in Patreon that is very much important. And the thing is about the minimum balance in the account.

If a creator is on Patreon, then he must know that he can't withdraw all the money from his account. Because in Patreon, to gain access to the funds, a creator must keep a minimum balance of his monthly payment in his account. So, it's very much necessary to have access.

The amount of minimum balance is not the same for all areas. It varies from region to region. It ranges from $10 to $25.

But there is no such hassle as keeping a minimum balance in the account, in Ko-fi. If you want to withdraw all the money from your account, then you can easily do it. You don't have to worry about anything here.

So, in Ko-fi there is no need to keep the minimum balance, but in Patreon, it is very much necessary for the users.

Crowdfunding Tool

Crowdfunding is a very important tool for creators. It helps the creators to have extra income. Like if you want to buy an important thing for your creations and you don't have money for it. Then crowdfunding can help you with this.

There are some creations of the creators that are very special for the fans. That's why the fans or supporters will give money to raise the funding. And thus you can easily gain money and create their favorite content.

Like, Your fans want you to create some specially shaped resin showpieces. And for that, you want to buy a very good mould for your resin showpieces. But they are very expensive. Then you can use this crowdfunding tool to raise the money to buy those moulds.

Isn't this amazing? But Alas! Thre is no separate crowdfunding tool like this amazing tool on Patreon. So, Patreon users can't enjoy this facility.

But in Ko-fi, the crowdfunding tool is available and the users can easily use it too.

So, a crowdfunding tool is available in Ko-fi but not available on Patreon.

Subscription Type for Supporters

Both in Ko-fi and Patreon, there is a tool for the creators through which they can gain extra income. And the tool is about the subscription or memberships to supporters.

A user can set a subscription model or membership model for the customers. Where the supporters will pay the creators monthly to get access to the special content of the creator. The creator can set the price of the subscription as much as they want.

But for some reason, this facility is less liked by the supporters of Ko-fi. But Patreon, the supporters love it too much and they also buy these memberships to have access to the special content of the creator.

This can be because of the better sharing features of Patreon. And that's why Patreon users can easily gain extra income through this.


One can't get to use all kinds of platforms on all devices. That's why before using any platform, one should know very well which devices he can use it.


Ko-fi app can be used only on Desktops. You can use it on any kind of desktop device. But it can't be used on Android/ iOS mobiles. There are no mobile apps for Ko-fi.

Patreon can also be used on Desktops. You can easily access such kinds of devices to use them. And there is no such thing as a desktop app here. But unlike Ko-fi, Patreon can be used on mobiles too. And Patreon users can easily use Patreon any time through the Patreon app on their phones.

Commitment to Publishing

Well, in Patreon, there is a commitment of every creator to the Patreon. And the commitment is about publishing their content. Patreon user is committed to publishing their content every month.

This system in Patreon is only to attract fans more. If a creator posts their content very less, then the fans will less follow him. That's why to make sure that a creator never loses his supporters, Patreon has made this rule of commitment to publish monthly.

In Ko-fi, there is no such thing as a commitment to publishing. The creator can post their content whenever they wish to. There are no rules to force them here.

So, in Ko-fi there is no commitment to publishing but in Patreon, there is a commitment to publishing.

Membership Tiers for Creators

Both in Ko-fi and Patreon, Membership facilities are also available for the creators too. Through these membership Tiers, creators can have access to better features, better tools, better themes, no commission at donations and payment process, and many more. To access these facilities, a user has to buy those membership Tiers.

In Ko-fi, a Gold membership is available for users. It is available only at $6 per month. By buying this, Ko-fi users can easily get access to better facilities.

Also On Patreon, a membership tier is available. It is of three types. They are Lite, Pro, and Premium. Their price range is not fixed. They are dependent on the total monthly income. The price of lite, pro, and premium is 5%, 8%, and 12% of the total monthly income respectively. So, it can cost a lot too.

So, in conclusion, we can say that the membership tiers of Patreon are more costly than the membership tiers of Ko-fi.

That's all. Now you know all the differences between Ko-fi and Patreon.

Won't it be easier for you to choose if you get to know the pros and cons of both of them? Along with the differences between Ko-fi and Patreon, knowing their pros and cons can also affect your decisions.

That's why we have also discussed the pros and cons of Ko-fi and Patreon. We hope that it will be helpful for you.

Pros And Cons Of Ko-fi

There are many good features of Ko-fi. And there are also many bad features of Ko-fi. And you should surely know all of them before deciding anything.

So, let's learn together about Ko-fi pros and cons.

Pros of Ko-fi

  • Ko-fi is more famous because of its donation feature. It easily attracts fans by asking for Coffee rather than asking for money directly. And the fans like it too.
  • There are many membership facilities for Ko-fi. And the price of these memberships is very low and easily anyone can buy them. So, the membership plans are one of those advantages too.
  • Ko-fi doesn't take any commission for donations and takes 0 to 5% commissions on sales. So, it is less pricey and very helpful for the creators.
  • Ko-fi also helps the creators by making crowdfunding easier and by sharing their content easily.
  • Ko-fi users can easily get their payment easily after every process instantly. They don't have to wait a full month for it.
  • The system of using Ko-fi is very much easy and understandable to all.

Cons of Ko-fi

  • There is a help center for Ko-fi users. But the help platform is very weak and unorganized. Rarely it responds to questions or helps those users who face any problem.
  • To donate to a creator, a fan needs to open an account. And it is very annoying for the fans and it makes them less motivated to donate.
  • There are very few integrations with important sites in Ko-fi.
  • The main page of the Ko-fi website is very much outdated. And even the team of Ko-fi does not try to update the page.
  • Sometimes, you can face some problems regarding the account and payment process. But it's also very rare too.

So, there are many advantages and disadvantages of Ko-fi.

Pros And Cons Of Patreon

Like Ko-fi, there are also many advantages and disadvantages of Patreon. And it's also essential for us to know all of them. Because it will help you to take the right decisions.

Let's get to know them together!

Pros of Patreon

  • The customer service and support of Patreon are very good and helpful for the users. They are very supportive and responsive to help the users if they go through any problems.
  • Using Patreon is a very easy task.  There are many templates on Patreon that you can follow to open up an account. And it's also possible to customize the account through themes to attract your fans.
  • Patreon also offers you repeated payment campaigns and opportunities for periodic monetization.
  • You can also sell your own different leveled annual or monthly subscriptions at the price you want to the users.
  • Integrations with different important sites are also available on Patreon.
  • Though the payment process of Patreon is monthly, the process is easy and smooth.

Cons of Patreon

  • One of the most important disadvantages of Patreon is that it charges a lot of commission fees (9 to 12% on monthly income). So, it's costly for many users.
  • For creators who want to sell their content to get instant payments, Patreon is not for them. Because instant cash out is not available here.
  • Like Ko-fi, you can also face some problems regarding the account and payment process of Patreon. Sometimes you can also face problems with the contents.

Ultimate Verdict: Which is Better?

Is Ko-fi the better one? Or is Patreon better? Which one should we choose? Well, if we first talk about the reviews, then both ko-fi reviews and Patreon reviews are good enough. Then how can we decide?

Well, we can decide on the basis of the features that we prefer most. Till now, we have got to know the differences between Ko-fi and Patreon, and the advantages and disadvantages of both Ko-fi and Patreon. So, we now know all the features regarding both of them.

Now we should prioritize the features that we want the most while using. Then we should check which one has the most of them. You should choose the one that has most of the features that you desire.

Like, if you are not a regular content maker and want to have donations, crowdfunding in a cheap way, then Kofi should be chosen.

But if you are a regular content maker and want better sharing features and payment facilities with better integrations of websites, then Patreon can be the best one for you.

Because both of them are good in many ways and both of them have many facilities. We can't declare anyone to be bad. They have many features that are better than the other ones. So, we should choose in a better way by knowing our needs. That's how we can decide which one is best for us.


Can anyone use Patreon for free?

Well, setting up an account and then using the account to get access to some features is totally free on Patreon. No one needs to pay anything for this free version of Patreon. But if anyone buys any membership tiers of Patreon, then he or she needs to pay for it monthly. Well, the price range of all of them is different. And they can also get access to better features by buying them.

Which country uses Patreon most?

Well, according to the statistics and research on using Patreon, we can say that the people of the United States use the Patreon most. Then the second position is taken by the United Kingdom. Then the people of Germany, Canada, and Australia use Patreon a lot.

How can one make money with Ko-fi?

One can easily make money with Ko-fi in many ways. Like, a creator can make money by receiving donations (one-off payments from the fans), by monthly recurring support, by selling memberships and products to the customers in the Ko-fi shop, by taking commissions for the services to the customer, etc.


We hope that you have got to learn all the differences between Ko-fi vs Patreon. Follow our guidelines so that you can easily know which one should be better for you.

That's all for today. It's time to say goodbye. You can share your thoughts and ideas in the comment section.

Until then, Best of Luck!

Crowdfundly Team
The Crowdfundly team gathers to write up actionable resources to help you start, create, publish, and promote your content on Crowdfundly.

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