Looking for online therapy sites in 2020? Choose the best therapist and get online therapy sessions via chat, phone, or video conferencing.
In this article, you’ll find:
Guaranteed and well-defined privacy
Thoroughly vetted therapists
BetterHelp offers a lot of therapy options at a very affordable price. Clients can even attend group sessions, all with thoroughly vetted counselors so they get the best online therapist possible. By being able to choose between unscheduled messaging and scheduled, face-to-face interactions, clients can find what works best for them.Read full review
Ease of Use
Bundle discounts for new members
Talkspace is among the best online therapy sites thanks to its wide variety of services. From psychiatry to insomnia therapy, it’s a solution that offers something for everyone. The plans have a reasonable price, and there are plenty of ways to save money on them.Read full review
Ease of Use
14-day money-back guarantee
New members discount
Online-Therapy.com is among the best free online therapy sites. Experienced CBT therapists are available once a day even on a free plan, and provide express replies on more expensive plans. Live sessions take various forms, and the amount of additional resources is enough to make your head spin.Read full review
Ease of Use
Get matched within a few hours
Choose counselor preferences
Transparent couples therapy
ReGain is a great solution for anyone looking for the best online therapy sites for marriage and family. Transparent three-way messaging, multiple modes of communication, the option of choosing your counselor preferences, and getting matched in only a few hours all give great value for a very affordable price.Read full review
Ease of Use
World-class video quality app
Therapists have a telehealth certificate
Covered by many insurance providers
Amwell is a great choice for the skeptics who don’t like the idea of a machine matching them with a therapist. Users get to pick one of the telehealth certified professionals themselves. It’s also the right choice for those who prefer to pay by session, rather than committing to a subscription.Read full review
Ease of Use
Discounts often available
Sessions can be as long as you want
PrestoExperts is one of the best online therapy sites because its options offer the level of convenience perfect for busy people. Creating a profile is easy and anonymous. The free chat and customizable sessions are great for those who can’t commit to a schedule.Read full review
Ease of Use
Health plans for businesses
Those on the lookout for the best online therapy in the USA, as well as businesses in need of health plans, can’t go wrong with MDLive. Special features like an AI-powered chatbot, sending prescriptions, and availability for children make it worth the price.Read full review
Ease of Use
Good for postpartum depression
Free listening service
For many, 7Cups of Tea offers the best online therapy for issues like postpartum depression or anxiety. There are communities, group chats, and group sessions to leverage, while licensed therapists provide extremely affordable services. On top of that, users can have someone listen to them 24/7, free of charge.Read full review
Ease of Use
High confidentiality level
With email notifications and secure phone calls, iCounseling is one of the best online therapy sites when it comes to convenience and confidentiality. 24/7 messaging and affordability give it extra points. It’s especially good for Christians looking for online therapy, as Christian-based counseling is an option.Read full review
Ease of Use
The support team checks in occasionally
Includes both teen and parent
Protects teens’ privacy
Teen Counseling is among the best e-therapy sites for teens’ mental health. Both parents and teens are invited to communicate with the therapist, and parents are in charge of choosing them. However, the teen’s privacy is kept intact and counseling details are only shared with parents in case of a serious risk.Read full review
Ease of Use
Here’s how we researched to find the sites offering the best online therapy in 2020.
We made sure the sites offer a wide variety of online therapy services. And we also looked for ones offering features that separate them from the crowd. Having an intuitive site/app was a must, and so was offering affordable online therapy that provides great value. Here’s what else we considered:
✓ Types of services offered
We went with platforms that offer different kinds of services such as individual, teen, and marriage counseling. Some of these platforms even offer therapy for children.
Each of these top online therapy websites has some features that make them stand out from their competition. These can be psychiatry services, health insurance coverage, etc.
✓ Modes of communication
The sites we reviewed offer users several ways of communicating with their chosen therapist, be it 24/7 chat, live chat, phone, video conferencing, etc.
✓ Choosing a therapist
Most of these services will match you with an online counselor based on a short questionnaire you will have to fill in as you get started. However, they all give you an option to switch to another therapist if you wish to. Alternatively, some of these sites let you choose the therapist yourself.
Our best online therapy sites list consists not only of those that offer versatile services but also of those that provide such services at an affordable price. The sites whose prices are somewhat higher still provide value that makes them worthwhile.
✓ Free plans and discounts
On top of affordable prices, we looked for online counseling services that offer free plans or at least discounts.
✓ Reimbursing and cancellation policy
Fair refund policies and a simple cancellation process meant a site will make it on our list.
✓ Ease Of Use
Finally, we didn’t neglect the importance of a simple signup process, as well as an overall intuitive website/mobile app. Additionally, web accessibility helped us narrow down the list.
BetterHelp has been around since 2013, and only licensed, thoroughly vetted counselors get to join. This site offers individual, teen, couples therapy, and even group sessions. It’s among the best online therapy sites due to these features:
Getting started with BetterHelp is simple. After filling in the questionnaire with basic information (gender, age, and previous mental health counseling), you can create a private account. With no need to provide any personal information, BetterHelp is among the best online therapy services when it comes to anonymity. Verify your email, enter payment details, and you’ll be matched with a therapist in a few hours or days.
Though the website states you’ll be paying $60-$80/week (billed monthly) based on your plan, recent reviews claim the price is actually $35-$80/week, so you may end up paying less.
Once you get a therapist, you can access your dedicated room 24/7 and send as many private messages as you wish. Your therapist will likely respond once every workday. You can schedule as many live chats as you need with no additional costs. Chat options:
The company is among the best online therapy providers largely due to a very successful matching process. Users are satisfied with the therapists’ understanding, while both the website and the BetterHelp app are very intuitive.
With BetterHelp, you can start therapy with licensed and thoroughly vetted professionals for as little as $35 a week, at your own pace. The proven effectiveness of its services, as well as a wide variety of therapy types (individuals, couples, teens), make it a great choice. Given that not many best online therapy sites have group features, BetterHelp is perfect for those thriving in group therapy.
Founded in 2012, this HIPAA-compliant service quickly became one of the best online therapy sites out there. Talkspace offers individual, teen, couples, therapy for employees, etc. Each therapist is licensed in their client’s state of residence.
Here’s what else makes it amazing:
After creating an account, if you’re looking for psychiatry sessions, you’ll have a live chat with a matching agent. You’ll need to give your first name and emergency contact to them.
If you’re looking for therapy, you’ll fill in a short questionnaire, get three potential therapists, and choose the one you like best.
Like most popular online therapy sites, Talkspace is subscription-based. If you choose to be billed quarterly/biannually, you’ll be billed less. Monthly billing starts from $260 and covers messaging only. More expensive plans give you one 30-minute live session a month ($316 monthly) or four of them ($396 monthly).
Couples ($396 monthly) and teens therapy ($260 monthly) only include messaging, and insomnia therapy costs $260 a month. With psychiatry, the initial session is $199 with follow-up sessions being $125.
Once you’re matched with a psychiatrist, you can see their schedule three weeks in advance, but can’t schedule anything within the next 48 hours. With therapy, you can start messaging (text, audio, video) your therapist within 24 hours of getting matched, and do it 24/7. They’ll respond once a workday, and if you’re subscribed to more expensive plans, you can schedule live sessions as well.
According to its clients, Talkspace offers the best online therapy in the USA. It’s the perfect choice for insomniacs, as well as those who can benefit from both therapy and psychiatry. This service is HIPAA-compliant, covered by insurance, and there are plenty of other ways to save money, including an initial bundle discount on psychiatric services.
Founded in 2009, Online-Therapy.com is one of the rare free online therapy sites. Though there are paid plans, the special therapy program is currently free due to coronavirus. Licensed therapists specialize in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). Besides the court-approved anger management program, Online-Therapy.com provides these features:
To get started with one of the best behavioral online therapy sites, just create an account, fill in a questionnaire, and set up your payment options. Upon subscribing, you’ll get a personal therapist based on your profile, with whom you can schedule the first session right away.
While the free plan covers the entire online therapy program, including tests, worksheets, and feedback, for express replies, messaging, and live sessions you need to subscribe to affordable paid plans. They start at $31.96/week (with the discount) and give you all the missing features. The Premium plan ($63.96/week) offers live sessions two times a week, for the best online therapy communication.
As soon as you subscribe, you’ll immediately get 24/7 access to all videos, the journal, action plan, and tests (depression test, anxiety test, etc.). You can start messaging your therapist right away and schedule your first live session (private chat room, phone, or video). Clients enjoy the amount of interaction with their therapist: they’ll send daily feedback on your worksheets Monday-Friday, and if you’re on a more expensive plan, you’ll get express replies to your messages.
Plenty of best online therapy sites reviews feature Online-Therapy.com. Not only does it offer all these resources for free, but it also allows for instant replies on asynchronous messaging. CBT therapists with various credentials, HIPAA-compliance, discounts, and money-back guarantee make it the right choice for anyone wishing to give online therapy a go.
According to its clients, ReGain offers the best online therapy for couples, and it’s been doing so for the last 4 years. The company’s mission is to help clients improve their relationships, and it offers individual services as well. All sessions are led by a licensed mental health professional. Here’s what makes ReGain special:
When you get started with ReGain, you first choose to add your partner right away, later on, or not at all. Next, you need to provide answers about the benefits you’re expecting, counselor preferences, and relationship information. Finally, add information about you and your partner (no need to disclose your identities). After a few hours, you’ll be matched with a relationship counselor and can get started with the best online marriage therapy.
ReGain charges monthly, and according to the website, the pricing ranges $60-$80/week. However, some reviews state you can even pay as little as $35/week if you commit to a longer subscription. Either way, it’s more affordable than face-to-face therapy.
You can start messaging your therapist right away in a dedicated room, available 24/7. With asynchronous messaging, your therapist adjusts to your preferred rhythm of communication. To give you the best online therapy sessions, ReGain also provides live sessions, including phone and video conferencing. However, three-way communication can happen only through messaging. The service is available via website and app.
Though individual therapy is available, ReGain is mostly focused on online couples counseling services. With the option of including your partner right away or later on, transparent communication, and getting to choose your counselor preferences, it’s no wonder we put ReGain on our best online therapy sites list.
Amwell is a HIPAA-compliant telehealth company founded in 2006. When it comes to e-therapy, Amwell’s licensed psychologists, therapists, and psychiatrists are all at your disposal. Online counseling for kids and teens is available as well.
Though there’s no instant messaging, certain features give Amwell an advantage over the competition:
Another huge difference between Amwell and most other best online therapy providers is that you get to choose your therapist. After creating an account in just a few minutes, users get a list of therapists with their photos, biographies, areas of expertise, and ratings. They then choose the therapist themselves instead of getting matched.
Amwell’s pricing of mental health counseling is session-based and depends on the level of the therapist’s education. You’ll pay $85 for a session with someone with a Master’s degree, while a therapist with a Ph.D. will cost you $99 per session. An initial session with a psychiatrist is $199, with each follow-up costing $95.
Once you choose the best online therapist, you can schedule a live session, but usually not in the next couple of days. There is no instant messaging, but live sessions are available via video conferencing on Amwell’s app. Some clients report technical difficulties, in which case phone sessions are offered as a replacement.
Amwell is unlike many of its competitors in a couple of ways. First, its professionals are specifically trained in telehealth. You will pay per session, so there’s no commitment to the service. It’s covered by plenty of insurance providers, and you have the option of choosing your own therapist. Overall, it’s clear that Amwell deserves a spot on our list of the top 10 online therapy sites.
PrestoExperts has been around since 1995, allowing thoroughly checked experts to offer their services. One of the categories on the website is “Counseling”, for adults and students.
PrestoExperts offers some of the best online counseling services for several reasons:
To start, create a profile (no name needed), provide your email address, and describe your needs. Then go to the “Counseling” category, choose a sub-category (“Relationships”, “Eating disorders”, etc.), and start browsing the counselors’ profiles. To start chatting with them, click “Contact Live!” If they’re not online, they should reply within 24 hours. If you like them after the free chat, click “Hire!” and start using their online counseling services.
When it comes to pricing, there’s no commitment or hidden costs. You’ll see each expert’s rate, and there may even be some discount codes to get you a more affordable price. While some experts have a rate of $2-$3/minute, there are some with rates lower than $1/minute!
Once you’ve hired an online counselor, you can connect via chat, phone (you need to have a U.S. or a Canadian number), or email. There’s no need to schedule sessions, but you can create a plan with the counselor you choose if you wish to have a set schedule.
PrestoExperts is among the top-rated online therapy sites despite counseling is just one of the categories. The website is intuitive, and the service is as convenient as they get. There is no scheduling or subscribing, which is perfect for those who are busy and can’t commit to a schedule, and it all starts with a free chat to help you make a choice. It’s also among the best online therapy sites for therapists since they can choose their own rate.
MDLive is a telemedicine website founded in 2009, offering 24/7 access to licensed therapists and psychiatrists in the U.S., even to children. The HIPAA-compliant service also provides health plans to self-insured businesses.
Here’s what makes it special:
Signing up is easy via the website, app, or a toll-free number, and only takes around 15 minutes. After browsing through the therapists’ database and choosing one, wait to see them right away (like you would in a real office), or schedule an appointment. You’ll be asked to fill out your medical history so your psychiatrist/therapist can properly assess you. With a psychiatrist, you can get a prescription sent to your nearest office. If you’re looking for real-life resembling online therapy in 2020, this is it!
Pricing is based on sessions. Both therapy and psychiatry sessions cost $108, with the initial psychiatry session costing $284.
You can chat with a virtual health assistant and schedule sessions 24/7, but there’s no instant messaging between you and your therapist. The only exception is if you’re hearing-impaired, in which case you can activate that feature. Otherwise, the only telehealth modality here is a scheduled video call (unavailable from the app) or a phone call.
According to many patients, MDLive is one of the best online therapy sites for health in general, including therapy and psychiatry. If you don’t want to visit a real doctor but want that same feeling, simply make an account, choose your therapist/psychiatrist, then “sit” in the waiting room or schedule a live session. An AI-powered chatbot is there to make the experience a breeze, and it’s even fit for children.
This award-winning service is among the few free online therapy sites. It offers users two ways to improve their mental health: by talking to volunteer listeners or hiring a licensed therapist. Talking to a volunteer is completely free. This HIPAA-compliant service is available to adults, teens (ages 13-17), while schools and businesses can implement it at custom quotes.
Here’s what 7 Cups of Tea excels at:
To sign up, all you need is an email address. Choose a nickname and start using free services. If you wish to talk to a licensed therapist, you’ll need to provide more information (including payment info). A bot will interview you, asking you to provide information about your personal struggles, but also some personal identification information like name and address. Afterward, 7 Cups of Tea will match you with a licensed therapist.
The company offers affordable online therapy to those who are 18+, at only $150 a month, regardless of how many messages you send to your therapist.
Once your subscription starts, you can contact a therapist via chat and send as many messages as you need to. They’ll respond once or twice a day, Monday-Friday. When it comes to trained listeners, you can contact them 24/7. They don’t replace therapy, but they can listen to your problems and support you. A mobile app is available as well.
7 Cups of Tea is among the top online therapy websites when it comes to convenience and price. It’s a supportive space where you can speak to trained listeners and join communities anonymously, for free. If you need more help, licensed therapists are available via asynchronous messaging, with teen safety regulations in place and HIPAA compliance there to protect you.
Founded in 2017, iCounseling has already made a name for itself. Thanks to the highly professional, licensed counselors, as well as the focus on convenience and confidentiality, iCounseling is among the top-rated online therapy sites.
Here are some features that set it apart from the others:
Both the website and the mobile app are very intuitive and user-friendly. To start, you’ll need to fill in a quick questionnaire and provide answers about your age, previous therapy, current mental health, etc. Afterward, you’ll be prompted to create an account, which takes around 30 seconds. You don’t have to share your name. The system will match you with a counselor (usually within 24 hours, or up to a couple of days), and your counseling can begin.
Pricing is subscription-based. Depending on the plan you choose, expect to pay $60-$80/week (billed monthly). The subscription gives you unlimited messaging therapy and unlimited live sessions with your counselor.
If your search for the best online counseling services has brought you to iCounseling, once you’ve subscribed, you can start messaging your online counselor right away. The chat room is available 24/7. If you prefer live sessions, feel free to schedule as many as you need, via chat, phone, or video conferencing.
iCounseling hasn’t been around for long, but it has already become synonymous with affordability and confidentiality. Live messaging provides convenience, while the option to schedule live sessions and not worry about sharing your phone number gives you peace of mind. This is likely the best online therapy for Christians, as it provides the option to choose Christian-based counseling.
If you’re on the lookout for the best online therapy for teens, look no further. Teen Counseling was founded in 2013 as part of BetterHelp. Its licensed professionals specialize in providing therapy to teens (ages 13-19) and protecting their privacy while keeping parents in the loop at the same time.
Here are some of its best features:
Unlike some other online therapy platforms, Teen Counseling requires the parent to sign up first. After providing certain details about your situation, you’ll be matched with a licensed therapist. When you approve them, you can invite your teen to join the counseling space.
According to the Teen Counseling website, pricing ranges from $60-$80/week (billed monthly) and includes messaging, phone, and video sessions. However, some reviews point out that the lowest price you can pay is actually $45/week. Either way, it’s incredibly affordable and covers both your teen and yourself.
Once you and your teen have signed up, you can immediately start messaging the chosen online counselor, 24/7. You can also schedule live sessions via chat, phone, or video. The single flat rate covers unlimited messages and unlimited live sessions. Parents love the service and see an improvement in their teens fairly quickly. Teens enjoy the chatting option as it makes the whole process more approachable.
The main reason why Teen Counseling is one of the best online therapy sites for teen health is that it provides therapy to both teens and parents. While parents choose the therapist and stay in the loop, teens’ sessions are still completely private. The Teen Counseling team checks in occasionally to give extra support to both parents and teens, and all of this comes at an affordable price.
There are three main ways to categorize online therapy.
The first category is based on the number of people attending the session:
The second categorization is based on the mode of communication provided:
Additionally, therapy can be categorized based on the client’s age:
The two main differences between online and traditional therapy lie in the mode of communication and the location of the therapy.
When it comes to modes of communication, in traditional therapy there’s not much choice – every session happens face-to-face, in real-time. With the best online therapy, there are far more choices. You can contact your therapist via chat, call them, or have a video chat with them. Furthermore, messaging doesn’t even have to be going on in real-time.
Online therapy vs. traditional therapy differences don’t end there. Because online therapy happens via the internet, clients and therapists are not bound by the office. Whether they’re abroad or commuting, they can always have their session, provided there is a decent internet connection.
There are plenty of benefits of using online therapy sites:
+ Convenience. With online therapy, you don’t have to spend time and money commuting. You can do it from the comfort of your own home, and in a lot of cases, you don’t need to schedule the session and worry about missing it. With messaging options (and sometimes even with phone and video) you can simply go online and start the therapy right away. Furthermore, with web accessibility options, even those who would find it difficult to go to traditional therapy can easily take advantage of its online counterpart.
+ Anonymity. Most of these best behavioral online therapy sites give you the option of signing up with your nickname only, keeping you completely anonymous.
+ Affordability. In many cases, online therapy is a lot more affordable than its traditional counterpart.
+ Great for anxious clients. Plenty of people would start going to therapy, but due to social anxiety, they decide against meeting the therapist face-to-face. The option to simply message a counselor makes therapy more approachable to them.
+ Available 24/7. E-therapy sites usually allow clients to message therapists 24/7. It means that whenever they need it, clients can share their feelings, and not have to wait for their scheduled session.
Online therapy has become especially important in 2020. With all of us needing to keep social contacts to a minimum, plenty are looking for therapy that doesn’t require going to an office. But there are far more benefits to online therapy. Instead of commuting and rushing to make it on time, you can simply sit down, turn on your computer/mobile app, and you’re ready to start. You don’t have to disclose your identity, and you can message your therapist 24/7. For those who like the “real feel”, there are video and phone call options. Online therapy offers plenty of ways to customize your therapy process and be as comfortable in it as possible, while also spending less money.
Online therapy is the right choice for anyone who wants to improve their mental health and quality of life. Individuals, teens, couples, or businesses – everyone can benefit from it.
Absolutely! However, there are plenty of online therapy websites out there, and some may not provide licensed counselors, nor protect your privacy and security. That’s why we’ve done thorough research and made sure our best online therapy sites reviews only cover legit companies.
Yes, and this claim is research-backed. There are studies showing that online therapy can be just as effective as face-to-face therapy. For example, one of them has shown that people with depressive symptoms got better after using BetterHelp, while others’ results go in favor of the success of online CBT therapy.
You’ll rarely find a free therapist offering a full suite of their services. However, 7 Cups of Tea has free, trained listeners, while Online-Therapy.com has a free plan encompassing plenty of resources. Many websites are affordable and offer occasional discounts, so stay on the lookout for those.
It depends on what your needs are. For many, Talkspace is the best online therapy site as it accepts insurance and offers psychiatric services. Meanwhile, Betterhelp is more affordable and offers limitless live sessions. With Talkspace, they only come with more expensive plans. Both services are great in their own way.
If you’re looking for the most affordable subscription-based therapy, BetterHelp, Teen Counseling, iCounseling, 7 Cups of Tea, and Online-Therapy.com all offer very affordable plans. Online-Therapy.com even has a free plan and provides discounts, while 7 Cups of Tea allows you to talk to a trained listener 24/7 – for free.
Online marriage counseling is a form of couples counseling in which a married couple attends online therapy together. Communication is completely transparent – both parties can see all messages shared with the counselor. Sometimes, however, the therapist will allow individual sessions with spouses for maximum results.
When it comes to the most tight-knit online therapy community, 7 Cups of Tea takes the cake. With forums, chat rooms, and even group sessions available to all their members – for free! – the company’s created the best online therapy community out there.
The list we’ve compiled consists of the best online therapy sites that offer services at the most affordable prices. You can even see what each of these sites is best for by scrolling up!