Are you currently trying to sell things online?
Then I am confident you will agree that converting your traffic into sales is hard.
And getting yourself profitable? That’s even harder.
But there is a simple secret to increasing the value of each customer you market to:
Sales funnels. Clickfunnels Vs Thinkific
By producing a well-designed sales funnel, it is possible to dramatically boost your sales and provide more value for your customers.
In this article, I’m going to introduce you to ClickFunnels, the software I’m using to create sales funnels for my business.
You don’t need any technical know-how to utilize this, and it is going to really change the way you run your business.
If you are ready 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.
ClickFunnels was made back in 2014 by Russell Brunson and his team. Since that time, Russell has turned ClickFunnels to a $100 million a year business and they just crossed over 65,000 active members as of August 2018.
In its core, ClickFunnels is an application for constructing sales funnels. With a bunch of added bells and whistles.
You can use it to construct:
– Landing pages
– Squeeze pages
– Membership websites
– Every kind of sales funnel you can think of, complete with order bumps, upsells and downsells
Plus, with the highest end Etison Suite package you’ll even be able to start your own affiliate program (Backpack) and replace your email service with (Actionetics MD).
Basically, you’re getting everything you need to market and sell your products online, without having to hire expensive developers.
And individuals are utilizing ClickFunnels with great success.
If you check out their 2 Comma Club website, you can see that almost 300 entrepreneurs have already created 1 million dollar funnels using ClickFunnels.
That’s remarkable.Clickfunnels Vs Thinkific
What are the best features of ClickFunnels?
Best Feature #1: Funnel template blueprints
If you have never created a sales funnel before then ClickFunnels has you covered.
Russell has identified 22 different forms of funnels that he has used 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 some other special funnels like Membership funnels you can make as well.
They include simple funnels such as the Squeeze Page Funnel which gathers a visitor’s email address and then sends them into a Thank you page when registering.
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 a more expensive products with Order Form bumps, and One Click upsells or Downsells.
In addition, each 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 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. Clickfunnels Vs Thinkific
Best Feature #2: Good Visual Drag and Drop Editor
While ClickFunnels gives 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 using sections that can have any number of columns and rows. You can then use your mouse to drag elements around and put them where you need them.
While not as adaptable as Instapage’s landing page editor, it is still quite good and it may be utilized to achieve just about any design you desire.
What I like is that the editor is quite intuitive to use.
Selecting elements on the page and moving them where you want is quite seamless.
Text elements can be edited inline, and modifying any element’s properties can be accomplished via the fly-out sidebar.
And unlike other editors on the market, everything is organized in a logical way. You are not spending a great deal of time hunting for what you would like to do.
The important thing is that no coding is required. So you don’t need to spend time learning HTML or CSS or any technical things like that.
Best Feature #3: Nice Selection of Page Elements
Elements (or widgets) are essential for providing you the flexibility to design the specific pages you woud like and ClickFunnels gives you a wide array of them to use.
Basic elements comprise of Headline, Image, Text, Button, Input forms and Video widgets. These are the fundamental building blocks for any landing page that you construct in the software.
ClickFunnels also includes several advanced components like:
– SMS Signup
– Pricing Tables
– Progress Bars
– Facebook Comments
– FAQ Blocks
– Countdown Timers
– Custom HTML
Plus, 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 in the editor sidebar. With most elements, you can change common properties like 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 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.
On top of that, they offer 5%, 2-tier commissions for referring people to the ClickFunnels affiliate program itself.
In addition you earn 40% commissions by promoting any product in the ClickFunnel’s ecosystem such as DotCom Secrets, Expert Secrets or even the Software Secrets books.
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 too.
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 will be able to bring this funnel directly into their account if they are an existing ClickFunnels member. If they aren’t a member yet, they can sign up for the ClickFunnels 14-day free trial and then get your funnel added to their accounts.
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.
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 approximately 8-10 seconds every time.
While I don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes, it doesn’t make sense to me why this could take a long time. It’s somewhat annoying, although only 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 am 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 most likely okay.
But you can get more annoyed at such limitations if you are doing client work, creating funnels for multiple customers or promoting ClickFunnels as an affiliate using share funnels.
You will need to upgrade to the Etison Suite plan if you want to develop infinite funnels.
Bad Part #3: Fairly High learning curve
The scope of what ClickFunnels could do is fairely huge, and it can certainly be intimidating to some.
That is why ClickFunnels put a lot of work into the onboarding process to help ease you into the program. The ClickFunnels interface is fairely well designed for the most part and when you’ve assembled a few 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 have now been merged into 2 separate plans.
How much is ClickFunnels now?
At the moment, the cheapest ClickFunnels plan is $97 a month. On this plan, you get access to all of the funnel production tools, but you are restricted to generating 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, 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 out there. But, you can purchase Funnel Hacks for $997 which provides you 6 months of Etison Suite for free and 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 limited whatsoever which lets you give the software a complete test before you fully commit.
If $97 or $297 a month sounds like too large a commitment for your current budget, there’s also a semi-secret, unadvertised Share Funnel plan which you can also have access to for only $19 a month. You can only create 3 funnels and 10 pages with this plan, but it’s a great way to test out ClickFunnels on a budget.
Everything else you should know about ClickFunnels
How is their support?
ClickFunnels support is quite good in my experience, although they can be a little slow in responding. They utilize Intercom, so you may 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 Vs Thinkific
You don’t necessarily need your own domain name to launch a funnel, but I would recommend it. If you don’t 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 discover how to do this from the first game in the onboarding training.
Do they have an active community?
ClickFunnels has an massive community. There is the official group on FB with over 100k members and the ClickFunnels Avengers FB group (for affiliates) that has over 30k members.
Both groups are very active and it is a great place to get feedback on your own sales funnels and answer any questions that you may have.
There are also other FB groups run by ClickFunnels affiliates that are also very active. The main one I recommend joining is Automation Nation. It’s 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 couple of others. The one limitation with using Paypal though is that it does not support One Click Upsells or One Time Offers. That is the reason why I would strongly recommend going with Stripe if you can.
What is the Funnel Hacks system?
If you are looking to get the $297/mo. Etison Suite plan, then it’s definitely well worth it to sign up with Funnel Hacks instead to save some additional money. For $997, you’ll get six months of the Etison Suite plan which is $1,782 in value.
You will also get a lot of additional training and bonuses which 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 who are making an effort to market it.
However, no, ClickFunnels isn’t a scam. It is 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 men and women are utilizing ClickFunnels to construct 6 and 7 figure companies.
When folks ask, “How do I create a sales funnel”, ClickFunnels is the #1 response hands down. There’s no other application that can do everything that ClickFunnels does at the moment.
What else is ClickFunnels used for?
Besides building standard sales funnels, there are plenty of ways marketers are using ClickFunnels at the moment in their business.
It is great for creating opt-in funnels to help you generate more leads and build your email list.
You are able to produce webinar funnels that will help you grow your brand and sell your services and products.
And you can use it to create membership sites where you’re able to gate your premium content so that it’s accessible only to subscribers.
How can you make ClickFunnels work for you? Clickfunnels Vs Thinkific
First of all, you need to have a product or service to market. If you do not have something to sell, then don’t even bother looking into ClickFunnels before you do. Unless you only want to market it as an affiliate.
Next, you need to be ready to commit time and money 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 enhance your main product offering.
If you’re 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 precisely the why and how of creating sales funnels and how to tell stories to sell your services and products.
And as you go through his own sales funnels yourself you can see how he goes from low-cost tripwire (DotComSecrets) to 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 much 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’ll be prepared to start making money with ClickFunnels.
ClickFunnels versus the competition
There are a few ClickFunnels alternatives out there that 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 is a very 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 comes with a huge selection of nice looking templates. Both have drag and drop editors that make it easy for you to build the designs you want. And both integrate with the popular email service providers.
Leadpages is more limited in scope compared to ClickFunnels. You use it to create landing pages that can allow you to collect leads. This is not a bad thing since LeadPages really shines for building landing pages quickly.
At this time, among the best strategies for growing your email list is using content upgrades. By creating targeted lead magnets into your most popular articles you can acquire opt-in conversion rates that far exceed your typical 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 will see now.
So if you are primarily concentrated 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.
However, if you’re selling a service or product, then ClickFunnels is the better choice. While it comes with a higher learning curve than Leadpages, as soon as you master the tool, you can really explode your earnings once you start creating sales funnels for each of your products.
ClickFunnels vs SamCart
SamCart is a product which allows users to build beautiful, high converting checkout pages. Which gives it a whole lot in common with ClickFunnels.
SamCart is targeted towards getting set up and selling fast. 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 quickly create coupons for your products which is another terrific way to raise conversions.
However, where Samcart is lacking, is the ability to capture leads and create complete sales funnels. The products come in at the exact same $97 a month price point, and I find ClickFunnels to be quite a bit more flexible and more 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 kind of funnel
– Great on-boarding procedure for learning the program
– 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 number 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 Clickfunnels Vs Thinkific
Which application you go with depends on your needs and the quantity of work you’re willing to invest in your enterprise.
Although a lot of you are selling standalone products, are you ready to put in the effort required to make a high converting sales funnel?
Otherwise, 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 really recommend giving ClickFunnels a try.
Not just to get access to the software but also because the coaching you get will be both inspirational and enlightening.
Take advantage of the ClickFunnels 14-day free trial, and see if you can use it to grow your business today.