Are you trying to sell stuff online?
Then I’m confident you will agree that converting your traffic into sales is hard.
And getting yourself profitable? That’s even tougher.
But there is a simple secret to increasing the value of each customer you sell to:
Sales funnels. Clickfunnels Vs E Commerce
By creating a well-designed sales funnel, you can dramatically boost your earnings and provide more value for your customers.
In this post, I will 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 use this, and it will 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 out there. I will be speaking about that too later on.
What is ClickFunnels?
ClickFunnels was made back in 2014 by Russell Brunson and his team. Since that time, Russell has turned ClickFunnels into a $100 million per year business and they just crossed over 65,000 active members as of August 2018.
In its core, ClickFunnels is a software for constructing 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
Additionally, with the highest end Etison Suite package you will even have the ability to start your own affiliate program (Backpack) and change out your email service with (Actionetics MD).
Basically, you’re getting all you need to advertise and sell your products online, without needing to hire expensive programmers.
And individuals are using 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 using ClickFunnels.
That is amazing.Clickfunnels Vs E Commerce
What are the best features 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 forms 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 a few additional special funnels like Membership funnels you can make 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 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 your more expensive products with Order Form bumps, and One Click upsells or Downsells.
In addition, every funnel type has its own set of free templates and paid templates. So even in the event that you don’t have any design skills, your funnel pages will 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 Vs E Commerce
Best Feature #2: Good Visual Drag and Drop Editor
While ClickFunnels gives you a great starting point with its funnel and page templates, the ClickFunnels editor is the place 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. You can then use your mouse to drag elements around and place them where you need them.
While not as flexible as Instapage’s landing page editor, it’s still very nice and it may be utilized to achieve pretty much any design you desire.
What I like is that the editor is quite intuitive to use.
Selecting elements on the page and transferring them where you want is quite seamless.
Text elements can be edited inline, and changing any element’s properties could be accomplished through the fly-out sidebar.
And contrary to other editors out there, everything is organized in a logical manner. You are not spending a great deal of time searching for what you would like to do.
The main thing is that no programming is needed. So you don’t have 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 variety of them to use.
Fundamental elements include Headline, Image, Text, Button, Input forms and Video widgets. These are the fundamental building blocks for any landing page you construct in the software.
ClickFunnels also includes several advanced elements 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 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 alignment.
Then there are element specific attributes 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 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 each 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 itself.
You also get 40% commissions by promoting any product in the ClickFunnel’s ecosystem including DotCom Secrets, Expert Secrets or even the Software Secrets books.
And thanks to the ClickFunnel’s sticky cookie, you’ll 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 known as share funnels.
Within 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 add this funnel directly into their accounts 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 amazing is that this share URL also acts as your affiliate link, and you will get a recurring commission if 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 choosing your funnel type and template, it needs to get added to your account.
For some reason, this procedure seems to take around 8-10 seconds every time.
While I really don’t know what’s really going on behind the scenes, it does not make sense to me why this would take a long time. It is a bit annoying, although only 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 on their lowest plan. I’m really not a fan of software products that restrict you in this way.
If you are just building sales funnels for yourself, these limits are probably okay.
But you may get more annoyed at such limitations if you’re doing client work, creating funnels for multiple customers or promoting ClickFunnels as an affiliate with share funnels.
You’ll want to upgrade to the Etison Suite plan if you want to develop unlimited funnels.
Bad Part #3: Fairly High learning curve
The scope of what ClickFunnels could do is pretty huge, and it can certainly be intimidating to some.
That is why ClickFunnels put so much work into the onboarding process to help ease you into the software. The ClickFunnels interface is fairely well designed for the most part and once you’ve assembled a few 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 consolidated into 2 separate plans.
So how much is ClickFunnels now?
Currently, the cheapest ClickFunnels plan is $97 a month. On this plan, you get access to all the funnel production 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 lets you create your own affiliate program.
To gain access to that, you’ll need to go for the Etison Suite plan. It includes everything, plus you get unlimited funnels, pages, and visitors. However, this will run you $297 a month.
As far as I can tell, there are no ClickFunnels coupon codes available. But, you can buy Funnel Hacks for $997 which provides you 6 months of Etison Suite for free plus some extra bonuses. This brings down the cost 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 whatsoever which lets you give the software a complete test before you fully commit.
If $97 or $297 a month seems like too big a commitment for your present budget, there’s also a semi-secret, unadvertised Share Funnel plan which you can also have access to for just $19 a month. You can only create 3 funnels and 10 pages with this plan, but it’s a great way to try 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, even though they can be a little slow in responding. They use Intercom, so you can directly ask questions in the live chat box. Support requests are usually answered in a few hours and I found the team to fairly helpful to all my questions.
Do I need my own domain name? Clickfunnels Vs E Commerce
You do not necessarily need your own domain name to launch a funnel, but I would recommend it. If you do not have one then your funnel URL will look something similar to http://username.clickfunnels.com.
One nice bonus I didn’t 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 learn how to do this from the very first game in the onboarding training.
Do they have an active community?
ClickFunnels has an enormous community. There is the official group on FB with over 100k members as well as the ClickFunnels Avengers FB group (for affiliates) that has over 30k members.
Both groups are very active and it’s a great place to get feedback on your sales funnels and answer any questions you might have.
There are also several other FB groups run by ClickFunnels affiliates that are also quite 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 the best email marketing software out there.
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 recommend 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 is definitely worth it to join with Funnel Hacks instead to save some additional money. For $997, you are going to receive six months of the Etison Suite plan which is $1,782 in value.
You’ll 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 gets some negative buzz around it because of all the affiliates that are trying to promote it.
However, no, ClickFunnels isn’t 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’s a fantastic software with an amazing affiliate opportunity. So many men and women are utilizing ClickFunnels to construct 6 and 7 figure businesses.
When folks ask, “How can I create a sales funnel”, ClickFunnels is the #1 answer hands down. There is no other software that can do every thing 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 right now 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 to help you develop your brand and sell your products and services.
And you can use it to build membership sites where you’re able to gate your premium content so that it is accessible only to subscribers.
How can you make ClickFunnels work for you? Clickfunnels Vs E Commerce
To start with, you need to have a product or service to sell. If you do not have something to sell, then don’t even bother looking into ClickFunnels until you do. Unless you just want to market it as an affiliate.
Next, you need to be ready to invest money and time into creating your value ladder and constructing 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 coming up with appropriate upsells, order bumps and other OTOs that complement or enhance your main product offering.
If you are unclear how to start, I would take a look at Russell’s own multi-million dollar sales funnels to provide you with inspiration. Read his book DotComSecrets where he explains precisely the why and how of building sales funnels and how to tell stories to marketing your products and services.
And as you go through his own sales funnels yourself you can see how he goes from low-cost tripwire (DotComSecrets) into promoting his flagship product (ClickFunnels).
By building his very own community of raving fans he could then upsell his various different products and events like Funnel Scripts, Funnel Hackers Live, and more.
As soon as 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’ll be prepared to begin making money with ClickFunnels.
ClickFunnels versus the competition
There are a few ClickFunnels alternatives out there which share a number 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 is a really popular tool in its own right.
It also recently added the ability to sell products directly on their pages using its new Checkout widget
Each product features a large selection of fine looking templates. Both have drag and drop editors that make it easy for you to build the designs you want. And both integrate with all the popular email service providers.
But, Leadpages is significantly more limited in scope than ClickFunnels. You use it to create landing pages that will allow you to collect prospects. This is not a bad thing since LeadPages really shines for building landing pages fast.
At this time, one of the best strategies for developing your email list is using content upgrades. By producing targeted lead magnets into your most popular articles you can get 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 will see today.
Therefore, if you are primarily focused on lead generation, I’d 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 product or service, then ClickFunnels is the better choice. While it comes with a higher learning curve than Leadpages, as soon as you master the instrument, you can really explode your earnings as soon as you begin generating sales funnels for all your products.
ClickFunnels vs SamCart
SamCart is a product that lets users build beautiful, high converting checkout pages. Which gives it a whole lot in common with ClickFunnels.
SamCart is targeted towards getting setup and selling fast. It supports both Stripe and Paypal and it comes with 17 distinct checkout page templates which you may customize.
In terms of 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 about. SamCart only allows for some basic customizations to its 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 great way to increase conversions.
However, where Samcart is missing, is the ability 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 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 procedure for learning the software
– Software has been better after each update
– Readily share any funnels you build and automatically earn affiliate commissions
– 2-tier affiliate program
– Free domain name with SSL set up
– 14-day free trial
– Limits on the amount of funnels, pages, and visitors with the standard plan
– Plently of things to learn, a steep learning curve
– Split testing is pretty basic
Final Thoughts Clickfunnels Vs E Commerce
Which application you go with depends on your needs and the quantity of work you are willing to invest in your enterprise.
Although many of you are selling standalone products, are you ready to put in the effort required to make a high converting sales funnel?
If not, ClickFunnels could be overkill for you. You can collect leads or sell your front end product more cheaply with alternative services.
However, if raising the average lifetime value of your clients is important to you, then I truly recommend giving ClickFunnels a try.
Not only to get access to the software but also since the coaching you receive will probably be both inspiring and enlightening.
Make the most of the ClickFunnels 14-day free trial, and see if you can use it to grow your business today.