Are you trying to sell stuff online?
Then I am sure you will agree that converting your traffic into sales is hard.
And getting yourself profitable? That’s even harder.
There’s a simple secret to raising the value of each customer you sell to:
Sales funnels. Click Funnels For Direct Sales
By producing a well-designed sales funnel, it is possible to dramatically increase your earnings and provide more value to your clients.
In this article, I’m going to introduce you to ClickFunnels, the software I’m using to build sales funnels for my business.
You don’t need any technical know-how to use this, and it is going to truly change how you operate your business.
If you’re prepared to throw yourself into the ClickFunnels world, it’s one of the best affiliate programs on the market. I will be speaking about that too later on.
ClickFunnels was created back in 2014 by Russell Brunson and his group. Since that time, Russell has turned ClickFunnels into a $100 million per year company and they just crossed over 65,000 active members as of August 2018.
In its core, ClickFunnels is a software for building sales funnels. With a bunch of added bells and whistles.
You can use it to build:
– Landing pages
– Squeeze pages
– Membership websites
– Every type of sales funnel you can think of, complete with order bumps, upsells and downsells
Essentially, you’re getting all you need to advertise and promote your products online, without having to employ expensive developers.
And individuals are utilizing ClickFunnels with great success.
If you check out their 2 Comma Club site, you can see that nearly 300 entrepreneurs have already created 1 million dollar funnels utilizing ClickFunnels.
That is amazing.Click Funnels For Direct Sales
What are the best features of ClickFunnels?
Best Feature #1: Funnel template blueprints
In case you have never created a sales funnel before then ClickFunnels has you covered.
Russell has identified 22 different forms of funnels that he has employed successfully in his own business.
The funnel forms fall into 3 main categories: Lead Capture Funnels, Sales Page Funnels, and Event Funnels. But there are a few additional special funnels like Membership funnels you can make too.
They include simple funnels like the Squeeze Page Funnel which collects a visitor’s email address and then sends them into a Thank you page when registering.
Or to more sophisticated sales funnels such as the 2-Step TripWire Funnel which sells a very low ticket front-end product (your tripwire) and then upsells them to a more expensive products with Order Form bumps, and One Click upsells or Downsells.
Moreover, every funnel type has its own group of free templates and paid templates. So even if you don’t have any design skills, your funnel pages will all have a consistent, professional design.
Here’s a high-level summary of how to create your first sales funnel:
- Choose a funnel type.
- Select a template.
- Customize each page to fit your business.
- Add your products and ensure all your email and payment integrations are set up.
- Set a domain name for your new funnel.
- Save your funnel.
Your sales funnel is now live and you can start sending traffic to it. Click Funnels For Direct Sales
Best Feature #2: Good Visual Drag and Drop Editor
While ClickFunnels provides you a wonderful starting point with its funnel and webpage templates, the ClickFunnels editor is where you can actually make each page in your funnel your own.
Pages in ClickFunnels are laid out using sections that can have any number of rows and columns. After that you can use your mouse to drag elements around and put them where you want them.
While not as adaptable as Instapage’s landing page editor, it is still very good and it may be used to achieve just about any design you want.
What I like is that the editor is very intuitive to use.
Selecting elements on the page and moving them where you want is quite seamless.
Text elements can be edited inline, and changing any element’s properties could be accomplished via the fly-out sidebar.
And unlike other editors on the market, everything is organized in a logical way. You’re not spending a great deal of time hunting for what you want to do.
The main thing is that no programming is required. So you do not have to spend time studying HTML or CSS or any technical things like that.
Best Feature #3: Nice Selection of Page Elements
Elements (or widgets) are all essential for providing you the flexibility to design the specific pages you woud like and ClickFunnels gives you a wide variety of them to use.
Basic elements include Headline, Photo, Text, Button, Input forms and Video widgets. These are the fundamental building blocks for any landing page you build in the software.
ClickFunnels also includes a number of advanced components like:
– SMS Signup
– Pricing Tables
– Progress Bars
– Facebook Comments
– FAQ Blocks
– Countdown Timers
– Custom HTML
Additionally, there are specialized elements like Membership elements for your own membership pages and order and shipping form elements for your order pages.
Each element can be easily customized from the editor sidebar. With most elements, you can alter common properties such as background colors, margins, fonts, and orientation.
Then there are element specific properties like the image URL for the Image element or the Button text of your button.
Best Feature #4: The ClickFunnels Affiliate program is awesome
There’s no doubt in my mind that ClickFunnels has the very best, legitimate affiliate marketing program that you can be a part of.
The ClickFunnels affiliate program pays 40% recurring commissions for every referral you make and you can win cool prizes like $500 towards your own dream car once you reach 100 active referrals.
On top of that, they offer 5%, 2-tier commissions for referring people to the ClickFunnels affiliate program itself.
And thanks to the ClickFunnel’s sticky cookie, you will also earn commissions on any upsells that your referrals buy as they go through their specific funnels too.
That is not all:
ClickFunnels also has another great feature for affiliates called share funnels.
Within the Settings tab of any of your funnels, you can grab your Share Funnel URL.
When someone visits this URL, they will be able to bring this funnel directly into their account if they are an existing ClickFunnels member. If they are not a member yet, they can sign up for the ClickFunnels 14-day free trial and then get your funnel added to their account.
What’s really awesome is that this share URL also acts as your affiliate link, and you will get a recurring commission when this new user ends up staying on.
What I do not like about ClickFunnels?
Bad Part #1: Why is adding a funnel so slow?
After choosing your funnel type and template, it needs to get added to your account.
For some reason, this process appears to take around 8-10 seconds each time.
While I really don’t know what is really going on behind the scenes, it does not make sense to me why this would take a long time. It’s somewhat annoying, although just a minor annoyance.
Bad Part #2: Limits on funnels you can create and visitors
ClickFunnels limits you to 20 funnels, 100 pages, and 20,000 visitors on their cheapest plan. I’m really not a fan of software products that restrict you in this manner.
If you’re just building sales funnels for yourself, these limitations are probably okay.
But you may get more annoyed at these limitations if you’re doing client work, creating funnels for multiple customers or promoting ClickFunnels as an affiliate with share funnels.
You will want to upgrade to the Etison Suite plan if you want to develop unlimited funnels.
Bad Part #3: Fairly High learning curve
The range of what ClickFunnels can do is pretty huge, and it can definitely be intimidating to some.
That’s why ClickFunnels put a lot of work into the onboarding process to help ease you into the program. The ClickFunnels interface is pretty well designed for the most part and when you’ve assembled a couple funnels yourself, the whole process does get easier over time.
Over time, ClickFunnels has evolved their pricing plans. In the beginning, they had 3 different pricing tiers, however they’ve now been merged into 2 separate plans.
How much is ClickFunnels now?
Currently, the lowest priced ClickFunnels plan is $97 a month. On this plan, you get access to all of the funnel creation tools, but you are limited to creating 20 funnels, 100 pages, and 20,000 visitors. You also don’t get access to Actionetics, their built-in email service provider and Backpack, which allows you to make your own affiliate program.
To gain access to that, you’ll need to go for the Etison Suite plan. It includes everything, plus you receive unlimited funnels, pages, and visitors. However, this will run you $297 a month.
As far as I can tell, there aren’t any ClickFunnels coupon codes available. However, you can buy Funnel Hacks for $997 which provides you 6 months of Etison Suite for free plus some additional bonuses. This brings the cost down to $166.16 per month.
ClickFunnels does make it easy for you to demo their service with their free, 14-day free trial. It’s not constrained in any way which lets you give the software a full evaluation before you fully commit.
If $97 or $297 a month sounds like too big a commitment for your current budget, there is also a semi-secret, unadvertised Share Funnel plan which you can also get access to for just $19 a month. You can only produce 3 funnels and 10 pages with this plan, but it is a great way to test out ClickFunnels on a budget.
Everything else you should know about ClickFunnels
How is their support?
ClickFunnels support is fairly good in my experience, even though they can be a little slow in responding. They use Intercom, which means you may immediately ask questions in the live chat box. Support requests are usually answered in a couple of hours and I found the staff to fairly helpful to all my questions.
Do I need my own domain name? Click Funnels For Direct Sales
You don’t necessarily need your own domain name to launch a funnel, although I would advise it. If you don’t have one then your funnel URL will look something similar to http://username.clickfunnels.com.
One nice bonus that I did not know about is that ClickFunnels will get you your first domain name for free and even set up SSL on it for you. You can discover how to do this from the first game in the onboarding training.
Do they have an active community?
Both groups are very active and it’s a great place to get feedback on your sales funnels and answer any questions that you may have.
There are also other FB groups run by ClickFunnels affiliates which are also very active. The main one I suggest joining is Automation Nation. It’s run by Spencer Mecham who is ClickFunnel’s top affiliate.
What integrations do they provide?
Even though ClickFunnels has its own email service provider via Actionetics, it also integrates directly with all the best email marketing software out there.
For payment gateways, ClickFunnels integrates with Stripe, Paypal, Clickbank, Infusionsoft, Authorize.net, and a couple of others. The one limitation with using Paypal though is that it does not support One Click Upsells or One Time Offers. That’s the reason why I would strongly suggest going with Stripe if you’re able to.
What is the Funnel Hacks system?
If you’re looking to get the $297/mo. Etison Suite plan, then it’s definitely well worth it to join with Funnel Hacks instead to save some additional money. For $997, you are going to get six months of the Etison Suite plan which is $1,782 in value.
You will also get a lot of additional bonuses and training that include:
– 6 Week Funnel Hacks Master Class ($2,997 value)
– Instant Traffic Hacks ($1,997 value)
– Inception Secrets ($1,997 value)
– SOAP & Seinfeld Email Sequences ($997 value)
Is ClickFunnels a scam?
I think ClickFunnels has some negative buzz around it because of all the affiliates that are making an effort to promote it.
However, no, ClickFunnels is not a scam. It’s definitely the real deal.
It’s a great software with an amazing affiliate opportunity. So many people are using ClickFunnels to build 6 and 7 figure businesses.
It is a software with an amazing affiliate opportunity. So many people are utilizing ClickFunnels to construct 6 and 7 figure companies.
When people ask, “How can I create a sales funnel”, ClickFunnels is the #1 answer hands down. There is no other application that can do everything that ClickFunnels does at the moment.
What else is ClickFunnels used for?
Besides creating standard sales funnels, there are many ways marketers are using ClickFunnels right now in their business.
It’s great for creating opt-in funnels to help you generate more prospects and build your email list.
You can create webinar funnels that will help you develop your brand and sell your services and products.
And you can use it to build membership sites where you can gate your premium content so that it is accessible only to subscribers.
How can you make ClickFunnels work for you? Click Funnels For Direct Sales
First of all, you need to have a product or service to sell. If you do not have something to market, then do not even bother looking into ClickFunnels before you do. Unless you just want to market it as an affiliate.
Next, you have to be ready to commit money and time into creating your value ladder and building out your entire sales funnel.
That means at least creating a lead magnet or low-cost tripwire product to get clients or customers into your funnel. And then coming up with appropriate upsells, order bumps and other OTOs that match or improve your principal product offering.
If you’re unclear how to start, I would take a look at Russell’s very own multi-million dollar sales funnels to provide you with inspiration. Read his book DotComSecrets where he describes precisely the why and how of building sales funnels and how to tell stories to sell your services and products.
And as you go through his own sales funnels you can observe how he goes from low-cost tripwire (DotComSecrets) into selling his flagship product (ClickFunnels).
By creating his very own community of raving fans he can then upsell his various other products and events like Funnel Scripts, Funnel Hackers Live, and much more.
As soon as you’ve gone through his funnels, then you can take the parts that apply to your own business and create a plan for your own sales funnel. As soon as you have that in place, you’ll be prepared to start making money with ClickFunnels.
ClickFunnels versus the competition
There are a few ClickFunnels alternatives out there which share some of the same capabilities as ClickFunnels. Two that I use myself are LeadPages and SamCart.
ClickFunnels vs LeadPages
Today, LeadPages is one of the market leaders in the landing page builder space and it’s a very popular tool in its own right.
It also recently introduced the ability to sell products directly on their pages with its new Checkout widget
Each product features a large selection of fine looking templates. Both have drag and drop editors that make it effortless for you to build the designs you desire. And both integrate with the popular email service providers.
Leadpages is significantly more limited in scope than ClickFunnels. You use it to create landing pages that can help you collect prospects. This isn’t a bad thing since LeadPages really shines for creating landing pages fast.
At this time, among the most effective strategies for developing your email list is by using content upgrades. By producing targeted lead magnets into your most well-known posts you can get opt-in conversion rates that far exceed your standard pop-up.
LeadPages is the very best service for implementing this approach with its LeadBoxes, 2 step opt-ins, and automatic lead magnet delivery which is why they are the most popular popup you’ll see now.
So if you’re primarily focused on lead generation, I would definitely suggest trying out LeadPages.
However, if you are selling a product or service, then ClickFunnels is the better choice. While it comes with a higher learning curve than Leadpages, once you master the tool, you can really explode your sales once you start creating sales funnels for each of your products.
But, if you are selling a service or product, then ClickFunnels is the better alternative . While it comes with a higher learning curve than Leadpages, as soon as you master the tool, you can definitely explode your sales once you start creating sales funnels for each of your products.
ClickFunnels vs SamCart
SamCart is a product that allows users to create amazing, high converting checkout pages. Which gives it a lot in common with ClickFunnels.
SamCart is targeted towards getting setup and selling quickly. It supports both Stripe and Paypal and it comes with 17 distinct checkout page templates that you may customize.
Concerning flexibility, there is no comparison between ClickFunnel’s drag and drop editor and SamCart’s.
ClickFunnels is infinitely more powerful in that you can design any checkout page you can dream of. SamCart only allows for some basic customizations to its pre-made templates.
SamCart does allow you to add order bumps, upsells and downsells like ClickFunnels does. You can also easily create coupons for your products which is just another great way to raise conversions.
But where Samcart is missing, is the capability to capture leads and create complete sales funnels. Both products come in at the same $97 per month price point, and I find ClickFunnels to be quite a bit more flexible and powerful compared to Samcart.
– Best software for building marketing and sales funnels
– Editor balances ease of use with flexibility
– Integrates with all major email and payment providers
– Beautiful looking templates for every type of funnel
– Great on-boarding process for learning the program
– Software has been better after each update
– Easily share any funnels you build and automatically earn affiliate commissions
– 2-tier affiliate program
– Free domain name with SSL installed
– 14-day free trial
– Limits on the amount of funnels, pages, and visitors with the standard plan
– Lots of things to learn, a steep learning curve
– Split testing is pretty basic
Final Thoughts Click Funnels For Direct Sales
Which software you go with depends on your needs and the quantity of work you are willing to invest in your enterprise.
Although a lot of you are selling standalone products, are you willing to put in the effort necessary to make a high converting sales funnel?
If not, ClickFunnels might be overkill for you. You can collect leads or sell your front end product more cheaply with alternative services.
But if raising the average lifetime value of your customers is important to you, then I really suggest giving ClickFunnels a try.
Not only to get access to the software but also because the training that you receive will probably be both inspiring and enlightening.
Make the most of the ClickFunnels 14-day free trial, and see whether you can use it to grow your business now.