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A Better Way for Creators to Make Money Online in 2022


In this article, we’re taking a closer look at Ko-fi. This popular platform allows creators to receive donations, sell products, and even set up recurring monthly subscriptions from their fans. In this Ko-fi review, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of using this platform to monetize your online content.

Whether you’re a YouTuber, blogger, podcaster, or Instagrammer, we hope this post will help you decide if Ko-fi’s platform is the right fit for you.

Hint: It’s awesome and if you’d like to save time you can simply jump over to the Ko-fi site.

Ko-fi Review

  • Ease of Use

  • Stability

  • Customer Service

  • Price


Ko-fi is a great option for any online content creators looking to accept one-off donations or sell products. It’s one of the only platforms that takes zero commission on donations, even on the free version. The Ko-fi gold option offers excellent value, too, allowing users to pay a low monthly fee to sell memberships, products, and services commission free too. Try out Ko-fi today for free!


  • Donations are Fee free. Any donations collected through Ko-fi go directly to the creator, and no additional fees are removed.
  • Sell products and services, as well as one-off commissions
  • Create and sell monthly memberships
  • Everything you need is in one place
  • Very adaptable
  • Easy to use for both creators and fans


  • Restrictive blogging features
  • Not as well known as other platforms like Patreon


Ko-Fi Review: [TL;DR]

In a rush? Here’s what you need to know.

Overall, Ko-fi is a brilliant solution for online creators looking to accept donations, sell products, memberships, and accept commissions.

It’s super easy to use and is one of the few platforms out there that doesn’t take a commission on donations. Even if you want to upgrade to the Gold plan, it’ll only set you back $6/month.

About Ko-fi

Ko-fi review: screenshot of the ko-fi hompage

Ko-fi is a platform that provides content creators with an easy way to receive donations from their fans. It is similar to the popular Patreon platform but has a slightly more easygoing feel.

It does have a few differences from Patreon, where monthly donations or subscriptions are more usual. A Ko fi account, on the other hand, works a little more like a virtual tip jar. It’s great for collecting one-off tips of any amount.

Ko-fi also provides eCommerce facilities enabling creators to sell products and accept private commissions from their fans.

Best of all, there’s no requirement to publish new content constantly, and there are no fees taken from your tips.

This unique offering has made the platform popular with artists, content creators, and small businesses looking to raise money to cover their costs or add additional income.

Over one million users have taken to the platform since its launch. Many users say that it’s an easy-to-set-up platform with a refreshing user-friendly interface. And this is what has helped it grow in popularity so quickly.

Ko-fi Review: Main Features

One of the best things about Ko-fi is how simple it is for users on both sides to send and receive money.

Ko-fi allows people to share their links or add a “support” button to their website. Visitors can then buy them a coffee or increase the amount they want to send with ease.

From a website visitor’s point of view, it couldn’t be easier. It even lets you send a message with your donation and choose from various payment options.

Things are pretty straightforward from the creator’s side too. You simply set up a profile, like you would most other social media platforms, and fill in your details. It can be a good idea to see what other creators have put on their pages so that you can feel confident you have done everything you can to encourage donations.

Ko-fi’s main features let you:

  • Easily connect to Twitch and show your Ko-Fi link in your stream chat
  • Accept one time donations
  • Create discount codes
  • You can use it as a platform to share content in a similar way to a blog
  • Supporters can use it to send you messages
  • Upgrade to Ko-Fi Gold to reduce your commission
  • Integrate with several apps, including Google Analytics using Zapier
  • Accept donations
  • Create an eCommerce store
  • Accept one-off commissions
  • Set up memberships and recurring payments for those that want to support you on an ongoing basis


Ko-fi donations page example

Creators are able to set up and customize a page where fans can show their support in the shape of a monetary donation.

The great news for creators is that setting up a Ko-Fi is free of charge, and they won’t take any commission from your tips either.

The idea behind the platform is to encourage fans to make small donations through one-time payments, the equivalent of buying their favorite creators a coffee. You also can allow supporters to set up a recurring monthly donation.

You can even amend the amount that shows as a possible donation—although fans can edit this and donate any amount of their choice. 


Like other monthly membership platforms, Ko-Fi allows creators to set up a membership section. And creators can choose different price points and tiers with varying benefits for fans.

It could be that you want to offer exclusive content to the people that offer you long-term support, or you could offer physical rewards for other membership tiers. The choice is yours. 

This is free to set up you will just pay a 5% commission on any membership payments you receive. If you don’t want to pay a commission, you have the option to upgrade to Ko-Fi Gold and pay a small monthly fee instead.

When setting up a membership tier, creators simply have to enter a name for the tier they want, a recommended price (donors can opt to pay more), and details of the rewards they get for signing up for that particular tier.

If you want to, you can also limit the number of people that can join a particular tier. This way, you can offer more of an exclusive membership package and encourage donations.

Ko-Fi Shop

If you want to do more than just accept donations, the Ko-Fi platform has the support in place to allow you to set up your own online shop. If you wish to sell digital or physical products, you can list everything in one place and offer an easy shopping experience to your visitors.

Commissions paid to Ko-Fi via the shop are done much the same as other payments received via the platform. You can pay a 5% commission on any sales but set up your shop for free, or pay a monthly fee for Ko-Fi Gold and pay no commission on any sales. 

One of the great benefits of using Ko-Fi for receiving donations and selling products is that everything is in one place.

Internet users tend to like easy access to the places they want to visit, and those interested in supporting their favorite creators are no exception.

By having your shop, your online content, and the opportunity to buy you a coffee all in one place, you’re making life simple for the people that want to support you—and that is the best way to improve your chances of receiving regular donations. 

Ko-fi Commissions

As well as selling your own products, you can offer unique goods and services for a fee too.

Similarly to platforms like Fiverr, and People Per Hour, you can list the services you offer, and people can opt to purchase any variety of these from you.

Popular services that people list include:

  • Content writing
  • Custom portraits
  • Video editing
  • One-to-one coaching
  • Consultations
  • Custom artwork

It’s a great way for Ko-Fi users to be able to diversify their online offering and, of course, their chances of people able to monetize their presence online.

For example, user Wobbleblobbe offers custom commission slots for her patchwork vests. This feature allows fans to buy a unique product from their favorite artists and creators.

The fee you pay to Ko-Fi on commission works the same way as it does with Membership and Shop features. If you’re signed up for the free package, you pay a 5% commission on any sales you make.

However, if you have upgraded to Ko-Fi Gold, you can pay a monthly fee to the platform, which makes all of your commissions fee-free.

If you have any skills that you want to make the most of, then selling services on Ko-Fi can be a great way to do this. When creating your listing, you’ll even have the option to have optional add-ons that your fans can purchase alongside this to give them even more value for money when purchasing from you.

Ko-fi review: Integrations

Whilst Ko-Fi offers plenty in terms of features and benefits when you use its platform to monetize your content, it doesn’t do it all.

However, that doesn’t mean it isn’t possible! Ko-Fi will integrate with Zapier to offer you the chance to integrate your favorite apps with your Ko-Fi profile.

In fact, more than 5,000 apps can be added to work alongside Ko-Fi. This means that if there is something that you want to integrate with your monetization venture on Ko-Fi, then the chances are you’ll be able to do it.

Popular apps that can integrate with Ko-Fi include:

  • Google – Sheets, Email, Analytics, Drive, Google Ads
  • Discord  – Team Chat
  • Social Media – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram for Business
  • MailChimp

If you visit Ko-Fi’s Zapier page, you can quickly and easily search for the apps with which it is possible to pair.

Once you have decided on the app you want to link up with, you can simply click on that, and Ko-Fi will give you extensive but easy-to-follow instructions on connecting the two together. The great news is that no coding is required! 

Ko-fi Review: The Pros and Cons

Ko-fi is a simple platform that gives you easy access to crowdfunding. It works well within its limitations and competes well against the competition. As you might imagine, people have their own thoughts and feelings on the platform. Of course, no platform like this is perfect, and there are always going to be good and bad points in the opinion of its users.  Here are a few pros and cons that highlight the areas in which it excels and its limitations.


  • Donations are Fee free. Any donations collected through Ko-fi go directly to the creator, and no additional fees are removed.
  • Sell products and services, as well as one-off commissions
  • Create and sell monthly memberships
  • Everything you need is in one place
  • Very adaptable
  • Easy to use for both creators and fans


  • Restrictive blogging features
  • Not as well known as other platforms like Patreon

Who is Ko-fi best for?

The great news is that Ko-Fi is diverse enough that a range of online content creators can make use of its features.

This makes it a great option for:

  • Artists
  • Musicians
  • Writers
  • Streamers
  • Podcasters
  • Video creators
  • Communities

Whether you want to offer your fans the chance to support your work or generate a new revenue stream with a membership, Ko-Fi has various options to choose from.

Whilst anyone can set up a Ko-Fi profile for free, this type of content monetization generally works well for content creators and influencers with a following.

That’s because, unlike platforms like Etsy, which have a popular built-in marketplace for customers to find your work, users will have trouble finding your work on Ko-fi’s Explore page without knowing who you are.

That said, it can be used as a simple shop front and to sell your services, so it is certainly a platform that can work for a number of people. The small commission of 5% payable on their free service puts it at a price point that is affordable by most too.

If you do find that things grow and you start to make more money, switching to their Gold option is pretty easy too!

Ko-Fi Review: Pricing

Ko-fi has two plans available for creators to choose from. Ko-fi Gold, and Ko-fi Free.

First up is the free plan. This plan includes 0% fees on donations, and just a 5% fee on memberships, shop transactions, and commissions.

The second option is the Gold plan. The Ko-fi Gold subscription costs just $6/month (when paid annually).

A Ko-fi Gold account gives users everything from the free plan plus 0% fees on memberships, shop transactions, and commissions. If you’re on the Gold plan, you can offer exclusive content to your audience, offer hi-res downloads, and even change the ‘Ko-fi’ metaphor to something else like ‘beer’ or ‘a sandwich’, depending on your preferences.

The Gold plan also gives users access to analytics to measure performance over time, and lets creators change the colors of their Ko-fi page to match seamlessly with the rest of their branding.

Ko-fi Review – The Verdict: Should you use Ko-fi?

Overall, Ko-fi is a great option for any online content creators looking to accept one-off donations or sell products.

It’s one of the only platforms that takes zero commission on donations, even on the free version. The Ko-fi gold option also offers excellent value, allowing users to pay a low monthly fee to sell memberships, products, and services commission free.

If you want o use Ko-fi instead of having your own website, you can take advantage of the built-in blogging features to create your own blog.

Ko-Fi is an affordable way to enable your fans to support your work. The fact that it’s so easy to use is the cherry on the cake. Most people would be happy to buy their favorite creators a drink, and Ko-Fi allows them to do this online in just a few clicks.

If you’re looking for a free platform to use to accept donations and sell products online, Ko-fi is a no-brainer.

Ko-fi Alternatives

The great news is that if you feel Ko-Fi isn’t quite the right fit for you and your project, then there are plenty of alternatives for you to research and check out for size. 


Patreon is probably the most well-known option for monetizing your content with this model. Rather than accepting donations, it allows you to set up a monthly membership where you provide exclusive content and other rewards when they sign up.

Patreon is free to use. However, it does take a hefty percentage of your earnings, which can put people off using the platform. If you’re looking for a platform that offers memberships, you might want to check out our top Patreon Alternatives to see some other options.

Buy Me a Coffee

A similar idea to Ko-Fi; people can also make small donations to you to fund and support your ongoing creative work. Buy Me a Coffee offers instant payouts with automatic payment deposits, so you never have to worry about being paid on time. It’s a great alternative for artists and creators who want to be paid immediately.

There’s no signup fee, but Buy Me a Coffee does charge a 5% fee on all transactions.


Known as the Bio-link for creators, this all-in-one tool enables creators and influencers to accept donations, sell memberships, and include links to all of their online resources in one place.

You can create a unique bio link to add to your social media bios, allowing followers to easily reach all of your content at the click of a button.

It’s a great option for Instagram influencers—particularly anyone looking to create exclusive members-only content.

Hy-Page offers a generous free plan, which includes up to 30 links per page. The pro plan costs $19/month and includes more features, such as payment processing and multiple domain support.

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