Discourse vs. Khoros Communities

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
Discourse
Score 8.9 out of 10
N/A
Discourse is an open-source community management and moderation product.N/A
Khoros Communities
Score 8.4 out of 10
Enterprise companies (1,001+ employees)
Khoros Communities is a fully-featured community platform, built for self-service support, education and collaboration. Organizations can host a vibrant space where customers can find answers, develop expertise, share experiences, and connect with their brand.N/A
Pricing
DiscourseKhoros Communities
Editions & Modules
No answers on this topic
No answers on this topic
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
DiscourseKhoros Communities
Free Trial
NoNo
Free/Freemium Version
NoNo
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
NoYes
Entry-level Setup FeeNo setup feeNo setup fee
Additional DetailsPricing is variable based on the needs of the customer.
More Pricing Information
Best Alternatives
DiscourseKhoros Communities
Small Businesses
PowerDMS by NEOGOV
PowerDMS by NEOGOV
Score 8.5 out of 10
PowerDMS by NEOGOV
PowerDMS by NEOGOV
Score 8.5 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
PowerDMS by NEOGOV
PowerDMS by NEOGOV
Score 8.5 out of 10
PowerDMS by NEOGOV
PowerDMS by NEOGOV
Score 8.5 out of 10
Enterprises
Salesforce Experience Cloud
Salesforce Experience Cloud
Score 8.5 out of 10
Salesforce Experience Cloud
Salesforce Experience Cloud
Score 8.5 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
DiscourseKhoros Communities
Likelihood to Recommend
8.9
(3 ratings)
8.5
(94 ratings)
Likelihood to Renew
-
(0 ratings)
5.7
(7 ratings)
Usability
-
(0 ratings)
5.0
(3 ratings)
Availability
-
(0 ratings)
9.0
(1 ratings)
Support Rating
-
(0 ratings)
5.2
(5 ratings)
In-Person Training
-
(0 ratings)
9.1
(1 ratings)
Online Training
-
(0 ratings)
4.5
(2 ratings)
Implementation Rating
-
(0 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
Ease of integration
-
(0 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
Product Scalability
-
(0 ratings)
8.5
(85 ratings)
User Testimonials
DiscourseKhoros Communities
Likelihood to Recommend
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
[Discourse is by] far the best online forum platform in the industry. It may be a little pricey for people looking for a cheap option for their hobby forum, but for any type of business that relies on a forum, the pricing is more than fair.
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Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
Khoros Communities is my go-to when I'm part of a big company with lots of customers who want to help each other. It's awesome for talking about products, giving ideas to make them better, and getting help when I need it. If my team is spread out or we're working from home, Khoros Communities is handy for sharing updates and working together. It's also a good tool for events, helping with planning and discussing what happened. But if my group is small or not very active, or if I just need a simple place to chat without too many extras, Khoros Communities might be more than I need. Plus, I've got to be ready to keep an eye on things to keep the community positive, and it works best when I have a plan to grow and keep the community lively.
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Pros
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
  • User Privileges : Teams, Trust Levels, Moderation, Private and Public Threads make it possible to have as much transparency, privacy or power decentralization as one wishes.
  • Gamification: Badges and Achievements can be customized for User Activity and frequent readers and writers.
  • Mailing List mode: Users can choose to use forum threads without the User Interface by subscribing via mailing list mode.
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Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
  • Increase in suggestions from our clients to know what we should improve.
  • Reduce technical support costs and incredibly increase sales.
  • It helps to interact with customers and we receive positive and negative reviews and based on their comments we can make changes that increase sales.
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Cons
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
  • Some configuration UIs are difficult to follow
  • Not well-suited for managing workflows (grant management as an example)
  • Bulk operations across multiple threads either impossible or difficult to figure out
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Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
  • Self Service, Low and No Code. The Community Managers should be able to some UI Tasks by self with doing any code updates.
  • Salesforce Integration: The basic Integration should also include the basic level of business requirement. (Contacts and Accounts Mapping)
  • Slack Connector Update: There is no update on this connector till the time its launch. The other team has lot of options to push the notification in multiple slack channels. And unfortunately Khoros does not. This creates a lot work for Community team to bring internal teams to the community to respond or acknowledge an post.
  • More Integrations: Since now the Khoros communities does not comes up with the integrations with basic support tools like JIRA, Confluence, Github etc.
  • Search Improvisation: Apart from last search update there is no updates we see in this feature. The team should think of Putting Some AI based Search into the community which helps the Community managers to manage the content accordingly
  • Some update on AI and Gen AI: Khoros communities did not shared any thoughts about their plans for putting these technology in community
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Likelihood to Renew
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
No answers on this topic
Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
On a scale of 1 to 10, I'd give Khoros Communities a solid 8. The system is extremely easy to use, enabling our team and community members to navigate and interact with the platform with ease. The wide range of features offered by Khoros Communities has greatly enriched our online interactions and improved the efficiency of our customer service. The technical support team has also been extremely helpful, could be quicker sometimes for answering our questions but they efficiently resolving any problems we have encountered. The platform is perfectly scalable, capable of handling our growing user base without any performance problems. What's more, Khoros Communities offers excellent integration capabilities with our other software tools, making our operations smoother and more efficient
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Usability
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
No answers on this topic
Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
Like every backend, it can always be improved upon. The excellent thing is that Khoros have a hugely active customer support community as well as a fantastic case management system to triage support issues and requests. So regardless of your level of knowledge or familiarity, you're well supported out of the box.
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Reliability and Availability
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
No answers on this topic
Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
I've hardly ever seen downtime in any of their production communities. There's the occasional reboot needed for config reasons or if patches are applied, but these take place after customer approval and typically last only a few minutes.
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Support Rating
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
No answers on this topic
Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
They are responsive and proactive. They are really on top of things. They send personal emails to check in on you. It feels like they really know you. You only get emails from 3-4 people at Khoros – they must be customer assigned.
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In-Person Training
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
No answers on this topic
Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
I think it is engaging and has good instructors.
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Online Training
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
No answers on this topic
Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
It was out of the box training - pre-recorded/ not live. There was nothing for more advanced topics like APIs. They do have a good knowledge base and community that you can access and folks in there are responsive. I would however like more advanced training options.
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Implementation Rating
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
No answers on this topic
Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
We were up against a hard stop with Jive’s contract ending and Khoros connected us with a deployment partner to do accelerated deployment using a template approach. It could have happened in 2 weeks. We did not end up going that way since we wanted more customization. Lithium handled technical stuff like migration, but a lot of the process is self-deployment. It’s one of the ways they teach use of the system is having the user self-implement.

Overall, the implementation was super easy to do. Doing single sign-on (SSO) was the only hard part. The implementation ended up taking nine weeks total, but in hindsight, we could have done in it six. Most of the implementation time was spent in course work, which consisted of on-demand training - approximately 7-8 hours that you are required for you to do, before they turn on the system. During this nine week period, about 50% of my time was spent on implementation.

We had a deployment manager who we were able to email 1-1. I leaned on him heavily. He was great at all hours, for example, they would call back at 7pm PST. They were very responsive.

Content migration strategy is important to consider. Moving from an existing community you need to strategically choose how your layout will be. Two different systems will have two different ways to format communities. For example, Jive has communities with sub-communities, whereas Khoros has community, category, and boards.

Contact migration is also an important consideration. You need to think through how you are going to move contacts from your old community to a new one. For example, are you going to create new logins and passwords? We were hoping to use the integration with Salesforce.com to be a portal, but ended up using an in-house solution that works well to maintain same the same logins. The next related question is are you going to be able to keep them connected to all the posts in your old community? We migrated old posts. If you have a tech-savvy team, you can do a self-migration. Khoros has a migration services team that we utilized. It cost us $10k to move content and posts were kept tied to the user.

The next consideration is your launch/promotion plan. Khoros helped us out and gave us a lot of examples. They shared pre-launch email dates, follow-up emails, FAQ pages (e.g. to explain why switching, why better).
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Alternatives Considered
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
Vanilla's mobile functionality was downright awful and it felt like it was stuck in the 2000s. While they have similar features, Discourse blows them away in almost every department. We don't regret switching at all.
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Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
Large companies and organizations with complex community needs are well served by Khoros communities. The platform's advanced analytics and reporting features helps organizations seeking deeper insights. The gamification is the best way to boost user engagement, Khoros Communities has a rich feature set. Also with customization options offered by Khoros Communities, companies can develop a unique and customized community experience.
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Scalability
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
No answers on this topic
Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
I think I would give Khoros an overall 7, while there were things we really liked about it. I also saw things that just did not work well for us. We like using iG but it was not the friendliest in using it on that platform. Sometimes the software would glitch or lag which is not helpful during high critical moments
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Return on Investment
Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc.
  • Community Members are eager to jump into the discussion.
  • Conversations can be tracked easier without the risk of being lost in a sea of messages as people tend to construct their posts more carefully than on any workspace messenger.
  • It's open source and configurable with many other add-ons to help integration with other services.
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Khoros (Formerly Spredfast + Lithium)
  • We are able to see what our different cohorts of customers are doing within the community, and we are able to create content and programs based on the engagement we get from these different groups.
  • We have been able to start an Idea Exchange space where our customers can share, vote, and comment on features they would like to see in our products. It quickly became a very popular place within the Community.
  • With the discussion forums, we are able to use the Accepted Solutions functions to help deflect tickets and Support interactions working on a 1-to-many scale.
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ScreenShots

Khoros Communities Screenshots

Screenshot of page design templates. These allow for on-the-fly customization and updates without a development team.Screenshot of page overview under the Designer tab. Easily organize content and make changes to page layout to improve the experience for community members.Screenshot of a conversation in the community. Engagement features allow users to collaborate, trouble-shoot and self-serve.Screenshot of Agent Assist in Khoros. This feature allows community moderators to reply to conversations faster and with better responses.Screenshot of the Analytics dashboard. Monitor key metrics to determine how members are interacting in the community.