With multiple online therapy platforms available on the market, it can be hard to get a sense of what each one offers. Here’s a breakdown of the two most commonly used platforms: BetterHelp and Talkspace.
BetterHelp vs Talkspace: Pricing structure
BetterHelp pricing structure is based on frequency of renewal. In other words, you pay less for BetterHelp membership the longer you commit to it (e.g., monthly memberships are more affordable than weekly memberships).
Here's a pricing breakdown of BetterHelp:
- BetterHelp membership, billed weekly: $80/week
- BetterHelp membership, billed monthly: $260/month — comes out to $65/week
- BetterHelp membership, billed 4x/year: $540/quarter – comes out to $45/week
- BetterHelp membership, billed annually: $1,820/year – comes out to $35/week
All plans with BetterHelp include unlimited text messaging and live text, phone, and video sessions.
All Talkspace plans are billed monthly. Their structure is based on how many live sessions with your therapist that you sign up for per month.
Prices for Talkspace are as follows:
- Unlimited Messaging Therapy Plus – $49/week (billed as $196 monthly). Includes text, video & audio messaging
- Unlimited Messaging Therapy Premium – $59/week (billed as $236 monthly). Includes text, video & audio messaging + 1 Live Session/month
- LiveTalk Therapy Ultimate: $79/week (billed as $316 monthly). Includes text, video & audio messaging + 4 Live Sessions/month
BetterHelp vs. Talkspace: How does each platform work?
BetterHelp: An overview
You start with an in-depth intake
When you sign up for BetterHelp, you answer questions from a comprehensive intake process. Questions range from “What is your relationship status?” to “Are you currently experiencing anxiety, panic attacks or have any phobias?”
The BetterHelp intake is a fairly comprehensive series of questions, with helpful guidance and explanations.
You're matched with a counselor
Within 24 hours of completing the BetterHelp questionnaire, its algorithm matches you with a licensed counselor. If you don’t feel like your therapist is a good fit, you can easily request a new one.
You have 24/7 access to a messaging room
Once you’re matched, you can reach out to your counselor at any time from your shared private “messaging room.”
Your therapist typically responds once a day, Monday - Friday
For immediate responses, it’s best to schedule a phone, video, or live chat session in advance.
Talkspace: An overview
You start with a quick intake
After answering a few required questions – e.g., What led you to seek help today?” – you have the option to skip ahead and view potential therapists.
With Talkspace, users have the option to skip ahead to see potential therapist matches.
You're paired with multiple options; you select the therapist you want to work with
The platform’s algorithm instantly pairs you with several therapists licensed in your state, and you select your therapist from that short list.
Similar to BetterHelp, if you don’t feel like your therapist on Talkspace is a good fit, you can easily request a new one.
You have 24/7 access to a private online room
Once you’re matched, you’re granted access to a secure, private “room.” This is where you can send messages to your therapist 24/7, via text, video, or voice.
Your therapist responds during business hours
Answers aren’t necessarily immediate; unless you have a plan that allows you to schedule live sessions, therapists respond during their own set business hours, five days a week.
BetterHelp vs. Talkspace: Conclusion
BetterHelp offers more live sessions than Talkspace
All BetterHelp plans include unlimited live messaging and phone sessions.
At Talkspace, only the premium plans include live sessions – at the rate of either one or four live sessions per month.
BetterHelp is less of a commitment, since you can sign up for a weekly membership
With BetterHelp, you’ll have access to therapy without a long-term commitment, since plans can be billed weekly (as opposed to Talkspace, which has a monthly minimum).
Talkspace has the most affordable option, at $49/week
Technically, BetterHelp does offer a membership plan that come down to as little as $35 per week. However, that's an annual commitment – paid in one lump sum of $1,820/year.
So if you're looking to just commit monthly – and only want text, video, and audio messaging (i.e., don’t need live messaging or phone sessions as much), the Talkspace "Unlimited Messaging Therapy Plus" is your best bet.
Find online therapists near you
There’s still a lot of room for research into the safety and effectiveness of online therapy. See what works best for you!
Some of our therapists at Zencare have the option of remote counseling, which can complement your in-person appointments on days when a trip to the office isn’t possible, too.