Are you trying to sell things online?
I’m sure you will agree that converting your visitors into revenue is hard.
And getting yourself profitable? That’s even harder.
There is a simple secret to raising the value of every customer you market to:
Sales funnels. Clickfunnels 101
By creating a well-designed sales funnel, you can dramatically increase your earnings and provide more value for your customers.
In this post, I’m going to introduce you to ClickFunnels, the software I’m using to build sales funnels for my business.
You do not need any technical know-how to utilize it, and it will truly change how you run your business.
If you are prepared to throw yourself into the ClickFunnels world, it has one of the best affiliate programs on the market. I will be speaking about that too later on.
Here is what I’m going to be covering in this ClickFunnels review.
- What is ClickFunnels?
- What are the best parts of ClickFunnels?
- What I don’t like about ClickFunnels
- ClickFunnels Pricing
- Everything else you need to know about ClickFunnels
- How can you make ClickFunnels work for you?
- ClickFunnels versus the competition
- Pros and Cons of ClickFunnels
- Final Thoughts
What is ClickFunnels?
ClickFunnels was created back in 2014 by Russell Brunson and his group. Since that time, Russell has turned ClickFunnels to a $100 million per year business and they just crossed over 65,000 active members as of August 2018.
At its core, ClickFunnels is a software for building sales funnels. With a bunch of added bells and whistles.
You can use it to construct:
– Landing pages
– Squeeze pages
– Membership sites
– Every type of sales funnel you can think of, complete with order bumps, upsells and downsells
Basically, you’re getting everything you need to market and sell your products online, without having to employ expensive programmers.
And individuals are utilizing ClickFunnels with great success.
If you check out their 2 Comma Club website, you can see that nearly 300 entrepreneurs have already created 1 million dollar funnels utilizing ClickFunnels.
That is remarkable.Clickfunnels 101
What are the best parts of ClickFunnels?
Best Feature #1: Funnel template blueprints
In case you’ve never created a sales funnel before then ClickFunnels has you covered.
Russell has identified 22 distinct types of funnels that he has employed successfully in his own business.
The funnel types fall into 3 main classes: Lead Capture Funnels, Sales Page Funnels, and Event Funnels. But there are some other special funnels like Membership funnels you can create as well.
They include simple funnels like the Squeeze Page Funnel which gathers a visitor’s email address and then sends them to a Thank you page when signing up.
Or to more complex sales funnels such as the 2-Step TripWire Funnel which sells a low ticket front-end product (your tripwire) and then upsells them to your more expensive products with Order Form bumps, and One Click upsells or Downsells.
Moreover, every funnel type has its own set 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 overview 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. Clickfunnels 101
Best Feature #2: Good Visual Drag and Drop Editor
While ClickFunnels provides you a wonderful starting point with its funnel and page templates, the ClickFunnels editor is the place you can truly make each page in your funnel your own.
Pages in ClickFunnels are laid out with sections that can have any number of columns and rows. After that you can use your mouse to drag elements around and place them where you need them.
While not as adaptable as Instapage’s landing page editor, it’s still very good and it can be utilized to achieve pretty much 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 very seamless.
Text elements can be edited inline, and modifying any element’s properties can be accomplished via the fly-out sidebar.
And contrary to other editors out there, everything is organized in a logical way. You are not spending a lot of time searching for what you would like to do.
The important thing is that no coding is required. So you do not need to spend time learning HTML or CSS or some other technical things like that.
Best Feature #3: Nice Selection of Page Elements
Elements (or widgets) are vital for giving you the flexibility to design the exact pages you want and ClickFunnels gives you a wide array of them to use.
Basic elements comprise of Headline, Image, Text, Button, Input types and Video widgets. These are the basic building blocks for any landing page that you build in the software.
ClickFunnels also includes a number of advanced components such as:
– 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 like background colors, margins, fonts, and alignment.
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 is little doubt in my mind that ClickFunnels has the very best, legitimate affiliate marketing program which you can be a part of.
The ClickFunnels affiliate program pays out 40% recurring commissions for every referral you make and you can win cool prizes like $500 towards your very own dream car once you hit 100 active referrals.
In addition to that, they offer 5%, 2-tier commissions for referring people to the ClickFunnels affiliate program.
And thanks to the ClickFunnel’s sticky cookie, you will also earn commissions on any upsells your referrals purchase as they go through their specific funnels as well.
But that is not all:
ClickFunnels also has another great feature for affiliates known as share funnels.
Inside the Settings tab of any of your funnels, you can grab your Share Funnel URL.
When someone visits this URL, they’ll have the ability to bring this funnel directly into their account if they’re an existing ClickFunnels member. If they are not a member yet, they can register for the ClickFunnels 14-day free trial and then get your funnel added to their account.
What’s really amazing is that this share URL also acts as your affiliate link, and you’ll get a recurring commission when this new user ends up staying on.
What I don’t like about ClickFunnels?
Bad Part #1: Why is adding a funnel so slow?
After picking 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 every time.
While I really don’t understand what’s really going on behind the scenes, it doesn’t make sense to me why this could take a long time. It is a bit annoying, although just a minor inconvenience.
Bad Part #2: Limits on funnels you can create and visitors
ClickFunnels limits you to 20 funnels, 100 pages, and 20,000 visitors in their lowest plan. I’m not a fan of software products that limit you in this way.
If you’re just building sales funnels for yourself, these limitations are probably okay.
However you may get more annoyed at such limitations if you are doing client work, building funnels for multiple customers or promoting ClickFunnels as an affiliate with share funnels.
You’ll need to upgrade to the Etison Suite plan if you want to build infinite 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 software. The ClickFunnels interface is pretty well designed for the most part and when you’ve built a couple funnels yourself, the whole procedure does get easier over time.
Over time, ClickFunnels has evolved their pricing plans. Initially, they had 3 different pricing tiers, but they’ve now been consolidated into 2 separate plans.
So how much is ClickFunnels now?
At the moment, the cheapest ClickFunnels plan is $97 a month. On this plan, you get access to all the funnel production tools, but you are restricted 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 lets you create your own affiliate program.
To get access to that, you’ll need to go with the Etison Suite plan. It features everything, and 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 out there. However, you can purchase Funnel Hacks for $997 which gives you 6 months of Etison Suite for free plus some additional bonuses. This brings the cost down to $166.16 a month.
ClickFunnels does make it easy for you to demo their service with their free, 14-day free trial. It is not constrained in any way which lets you give the software a complete test before you fully commit.
If $97 or $297 a month sounds like too big a commitment for your current budget, there’s 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 need to know about ClickFunnels
How is their support?
ClickFunnels support is fairly good in my experience, although they can be somewhat slow in responding. They use Intercom, so you can directly ask questions in the live chat box. Support requests are usually answered within a few hours and I found the staff to fairly helpful to all my questions.
Do I need my own domain name? Clickfunnels 101
You don’t necessarily need your own domain name to launch a funnel, but I would advise it. If you don’t have one then your funnel URL will look something like http://username.clickfunnels.com.
One nice bonus I didn’t know about is that ClickFunnels will buy you your first domain name for free and even install 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 opinions on your own sales funnels and answer any questions you might have.
Additionally, there are other FB groups run by ClickFunnels affiliates that are also very active. The main one I recommend joining is Automation Nation. It is run by Spencer Mecham who is ClickFunnel’s top affiliate.
What integrations do they offer?
Even though ClickFunnels has its own email service provider via Actionetics, it also integrates directly with all the best email marketing software on the market.
For payment gateways, ClickFunnels integrates with Stripe, Paypal, Clickbank, Infusionsoft, Authorize.net, and a few 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 highly suggest going with Stripe if you’re able to.
What is the Funnel Hacks system?
If you are looking to acquire the $297/mo. Etison Suite plan, then it is 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 bunch of additional training and bonuses 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 due to all of the affiliates who are trying to promote it.
However, no, ClickFunnels isn’t a scam. It is certainly 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’s a software with an amazing affiliate opportunity. So many men and women are utilizing ClickFunnels to construct 6 and 7 figure companies.
When people ask, “How do I create a sales funnel”, ClickFunnels is the #1 answer hands down. There’s 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 plenty of ways marketers are using ClickFunnels at the moment in their business.
It’s great for creating opt-in funnels that will help you generate more prospects and build your email list.
You can create webinar funnels that will help you grow your brand and sell your products and services.
And you can use it to create membership sites where you’re able to gate your premium content so that it is available only to subscribers.
How can you make ClickFunnels work for you? Clickfunnels 101
To start with, you need to have a product or service to sell. If you do not have something to sell, then do not even bother looking into ClickFunnels until you do. Unless you only want to promote it as an affiliate.
Next, you need to be ready to invest money and time into creating your value ladder and building out your entire sales funnel.
That means creating a lead magnet or low-cost tripwire product to get customers or clients into your funnel. And then coming up with proper upsells, order bumps and other OTOs that match or improve your main product offering.
If you are unclear how to being, 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 explains exactly the why and how of building sales funnels and how to tell stories to marketing your services and products.
And as you go through his own sales funnels yourself you can observe the way he goes from low-cost tripwire (DotComSecrets) to promoting his flagship product (ClickFunnels).
By building his very own community of raving fans he can then upsell his various other products and events like Funnel Scripts, Funnel Hackers Live, and more.
Once you’ve gone through his funnels, then you can take the parts that are applicable to your own business and create a plan for your sales funnel. Once you have that in place, you will be prepared to begin 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 among the market leaders in the landing page builder space and it’s a really popular tool in its own right.
It also recently added the capability to sell products directly on their pages using its new Checkout widget
Each product comes with a huge selection of nice looking templates. Both have drag and drop editors that make it effortless for you to create the designs you desire. And both integrate with the popular email service providers.
But, Leadpages is significantly more limited in scope compared to ClickFunnels. You use it to create landing pages that will allow you to collect prospects. This isn’t a bad thing because LeadPages really shines for building landing pages quickly.
At this time, one of the most effective strategies for growing your email list is by using content upgrades. By producing targeted lead magnets into your most popular posts you can acquire opt-in conversion rates that far surpass your standard pop-up.
LeadPages is the best service for implementing this strategy with its LeadBoxes, 2 step opt-ins, and automatic lead magnet delivery which is why they are the most popular popup you’ll see today.
So if you are primarily focused on lead generation, I’d definitely recommend 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’re selling a service or product, then ClickFunnels is the better alternative . While it comes with a higher learning curve than Leadpages, once you master the tool, you can definitely explode your earnings once you start creating sales funnels for all your products.
ClickFunnels vs SamCart
SamCart is a product which lets users build beautiful, high converting checkout pages. Which gives it a lot in common with ClickFunnels.
SamCart is geared towards getting set up and selling quickly. It supports both Stripe and Paypal and it comes with 17 different checkout page templates which you can customize.
In terms of flexibility, there’s absolutely not any 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 own pre-made templates.
SamCart does permit you to add order bumps, upsells and downsells like ClickFunnels does. You can also easily create coupons for your products which is just another terrific way to raise conversions.
But where Samcart is lacking, is the capability to capture leads and build complete sales funnels. The 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 creating marketing and sales funnels
– Editor balances ease of use with flexibility
– Integrates with all major email and payment providers
– Beautiful looking templates for each type of funnel
– Great on-boarding process for learning the software
– Software continues to get better after each update
– Readily share any funnels you build and automatically earn affiliate commissions
– 2-tier affiliate program
– Free domain name with SSL installed
– 14-day free trial
– Limitations on the amount of funnels, pages, and visitors with the standard plan
– Plently of things to understand, a steep learning curve
– Split testing is pretty basic
Final Thoughts Clickfunnels 101
Which software you go with depends on your needs and the amount of work you’re willing to invest in your enterprise.
Although many of you are selling standalone products, are you willing to put in the effort required to make a high converting sales funnel?
If not, ClickFunnels could be overkill for you. It’s possible to collect leads or sell your front end product more cheaply using alternative services.
However, if increasing the average lifetime value of your clients is important to you, then I truly suggest giving ClickFunnels a try.
Not only to access the software but also because the training you receive will be both inspiring and enlightening.
Take advantage of the ClickFunnels 14-day free trial, and see whether you can use it to grow your business today.