By: Etison LLC
Selling stuff online is what a lot of businesses pretty much do these days. The beauty of online selling is that you can do it both from your grandma’s basement or while sitting in a mansion.
The internet is a great leveler, and everyone gets their chance. It doesn’t matter if you are selling a physical product or an idea, if you can find buyers, you can sell it.
And this is where the reality starts to creep in. It’s one thing to list out things on the internet, and an entirely different ball game to find enough customers so that the business stays afloat.
The biggest leveler, the internet, turns out to be a gruesome playing field, as well. With people having short attention spans, it is a daunting task to make them take action, especially amidst all the distractions.
People used to think that if they create a wonderful website and place their products on it, then they can easily start living their dream from all the money they earn from the sales. But guess what? There are already millions of websites selling stuff on the internet.
Landing pages became the go-to options of online sellers when they realized that a mere website is not enough. Landing pages are more focused on the action and try to suppress the distractions as much as possible.
And now, there are a lot of landing pages on the internet, and one needs to take the game one level higher to convert the sales. This is where ClickFunnels comes in. It is a funnel builder that helps you curate the process to guide the buyer through various stages of your funneling process.
You can create funnels to sell products, gather leads, promote an event, and so on. ClickFunnels would help you through all the stages of these different funnels.
It goes without saying that you will also be able to create landing pages on this platform. Apart from that, they provide automation, affiliate marketing assistance, ability to create opt-in pages, and much more.
In this review, we will go through all the features of ClickFunnels and tell you how this tool helps you stay ahead of the rest. We will assess the ease of using all the different sections on this platform and tell you if you should go with ClickFunnels to boost sales.
The review will also help you understand ClickFunnels better and will turn out to be of some assistance in case you decide to go with the product.
Let’s start with what ClickFunnels says it does best, that is, create a sales funnel.
Funnels are referred to as campaigns that take visitors from one stage of the campaign to another. You might use incentives or the so-called lead magnets to make the visitors stay with you.
The number of leads usually keeps reducing at subsequent stages of the funnel, but there is something of value for both the visitors as well as the funnel manager at every stage of the funnel.
For instance, if you had a funnel selling personal finance guides, but you were not able to convert a lead that entered the funnel. Even though you were not able to have a successful sale, you will now have the email address of the person who is interested in personal finance.
ClickFunnels would let you build funnels for more than just sales and help to curate each stage so that you can make the most out of your campaign.
ClickFunnels offers you two ways to build a funnel. One way is to take matters into your hands and create a funnel from scratch. This option is called the Classic Funnel Builder.
But if you don’t have much knowledge of how funnels works or aren't sure of the designing part, then ClickFunnels has got you covered with its Cookbook Builder Process. In this option, you get a lot of pre-made funnels that only need a little bit of tinkering for you to go live.
Let’s dash through the two methods.
1. Classic Funnel Builder
The tool asks you to specify the goal before you proceed with the funnel. The options they provide include collecting emails, selling products, and hosting webinars. If you happen to have a goal other than these three, then you can opt to create a custom funnel.
They will give you even more options depending on the goal you choose. For instance, if you choose to create a funnel to sell products online, then the subsequent options will be like if you want to launch the product or use existing leads to sell the product.
In a nutshell, there isn’t going to be a dearth of options when you create a funnel on the platform. Once you have chosen the goal and the type of funnel you want to create, you will be adding some details about the campaign.
Different funnels come with a different numbers of stages. You will find only two stages in a funnel if you go with the one made to collect emails, and if you choose the product launch campaign, you will end up with a 7-stage funnel.
They would specify what different stages of the funnel are supposed to do. It is entirely up to you if you want to follow the guidelines laid down by CickFunnels or not.
However, they do claim that their funnels are backed up by significant market research and experience. And ClickFunnels is the easiest to use if you are following their directions.
But if you don’t find yourself satisfied with the funnel strategy provided by ClickFunnels, you can modify it as per your liking. You can add or remove stages from the funnel, and you can also decide what a particular stage of the funnel is supposed to do.
There are all kinds of options.
2. Cookbook Builder Process
You can call this one as the Classic Funnel Builder on steroids.
The Cookbook Builder Process provides you with 22 prebuilt funnels created for different purposes. You can find a funnel to invite and collect applications, a hero funnel to let people know about you, a homepage funnel to push people into more funnels, and so on.
You can filter these funnels by industries and types to reduce down the options.
Once you select the type of funnel you need, you will reach the page that has a short description of the funnel and has multiple templates.
The description would explain the exact purpose of the funnel and how it works. For templates, you will find both free and paid options.
Unlike the previous option, you do not need to take care of each stage of the funnel individually. When you select a funnel, it takes care of pages for all the stages. All you need to do then is to edit the page as per your desires.
Both the methods of creating funnels take care of most of the needs of the user. If you want to speed through the process, you can choose the Cookbook Builder Process. And if you want to exercise more control over the elements, then you can go for the Classic Funnel Builder.
Before we get into the editing section, let us stop and appreciate the template options one gets with ClickFunnels.
First of all, they have plenty of choices for the user irrespective of the purpose of the page. It doesn’t matter the kind of funnel you choose or the method you select for building. You can always expect to get a rich collection of templates.
You can also save some templates of your own and use them while building funnels. The feature negates the need to go through the process of editing templates again and again.
All the templates provided by them seemed professional and organized. Most of them were ready to go live with just a few minor changes.
On the funnel page, you can see the different categories available for templates. The options are optin, sales, webinar, membership, clickpop, and miscellaneous. You can go to whichever category you feel like using and choose a template.
A funnel with multiple stages means there will be pages on it with varying purposes. There are opt-in pages, thank you pages, sales pages, payment pages, registration pages, and so on.
The impressive part about ClickFunnels is that no matter what kind of page it is, there are always multiple great options for the purpose. Even the Cookbook Builder Process had plenty to offer to users.
It goes without saying that the paid templates are usually better than the free ones, but the sheer volume of options seems enough to take care of the needs of most.
There will be occasions when you aren't satisfied with the funnel stages that come with a pre-built funnel. And it is understandable because not all businesses are the same, and therefore, there can always be some variations.
In case of a disagreement, you might end up either removing a stage, adding a stage, or maybe end up changing the role of the stage.
It is a cakewalk to take all the three actions on ClickFunnels. To add a new stage, you can select the option saying, “add new step.” To delete a stage, you can hover over it on the panel and click on the big red cross.
And to shuffle the stages, you can slide a stage across the panel. When you add a new stage, you need to name it and define a path.
A landing page is slightly different from the regular pages you see on a website. Landing pages are meant for a specific purpose, such as to make the visitor sign up for a newsletter or buy a product.
The usual web pages can also be used to make sales or collect email addresses, but then they also have so many other elements that viewer often gets lost in the jungle of content and ends up leaving the page without responding to the call to action.
A landing page, on the other hand, is free of such distractions and is more geared towards bringing the user’s attention to the call to action.
The editor on ClickFunnels comes with all the tools that you might need to create a landing page good enough to get the job done.
In most cases, you’d be only editing what’s already available on the template. You will be replacing the logo on the template with yours, you will be modifying text and perhaps change the font to match it with what’s on the website.
Editing the existing elements is as easy as it can be. You can change the text by clicking on it, change videos by replacing the links, change images by importing new ones, and so on.
In case you want to revamp a landing page or create an entirely new one, you won’t be disappointed. The top panel on the editor lets you take care of almost everything on the page.
You can use it to add sections, rows, columns, and elements. The elements tray lists out a bunch of categories for everything that you can introduce on the page. There are text elements, media elements, forms, countdowns, and miscellaneous options.
It’s a simple drag and drop editor that a lot of us are alredy used to seeing on web page builders.
The editor also lets you check the responsiveness of the page. Since most people are now using mobile browsers to explore the internet, it only makes sense that you make sure that the page works and looks well on mobile browsers.
Apart from the aesthetics, you can also take care of tracking codes, integrations, SEO metadata, custom CSS, and all the other kinds of intricacies from within the editor only.
The editor on ClickFunnels is not among the most intuitive ones, but it does not cut down on capabilities by any means. It is much easier to edit the elements rather than designing a new page from scratch, and that’s what ClickFunnels is expecting you to do in most cases.
The internet is an ever-evolving space. A technique that is perfectly well for you today might turn out to be completely obsolete in the future. One needs to be on a constant lookout for new ways to get an edge over others.
And you also need to pass the new strategies and techniques through a litmus test to see if they can withstand the forces of the internet.
Split testing is a great way to test out all the variations and new introductions without disrupting the existing systems entirely. With split testing, you don’t need to rely on hunches, and you get some solid stats to back up the claims.
ClickFunnels allows the user to run A/B tests for individual stages of the funnel. So, if you are not so sure about a particular landing page or the optin form, you can have another one go live along with it.
You don’t need to do much to create a variation of the page. There are two ways to set up the variant. The first one is to copy the existing page and make a few adjustments. And the second way is to create an entirely different page either from scratch or by using a different layout.
If you are looking forward to improve the strategies for the future, the variant should have only one or two different elements as compared to a complete revamp. If you decide to introduce a whole lot of changes, you will never get to know the reason behind the different performances of the two pages.
ClickFunnels allows the user to introduce only a single variant for split testing. Once you have the variant ready with all the necessary changes, you can now specify the percentage share of the two variants. You get a scroll bar to take care of it.
You can stop the test whenever you want. It is all about identifying which landing page has more conversions.
Carrying out split testing on this platform is a simple enough process. You do not need to spend an awful lot of time taking care of the particulars. It will only be a matter of minutes, if you know what variation you want, to make the test go live.
Contacts are essentially the most important pieces of the puzzle for any marketing campaign. Some of the campaigns would be focused on gathering more contacts, while others would use the existing contacts to bring in more revenue to the business.
You will have multiple ways to build up the contact list on ClickFunnels. When you start on the platform, you might already have a contact list that you would want to import.
You can easily import all that contact information and have it on this platform with all the necessary fields and tags.
The more information you have associated with a contact, the easier it becomes to apply filters while specifying the recipients of a particular campaign.
The other way of populating contacts is by using the funnels. We already mentioned that ClickFunnels allows one to create more than just sales funnel. You can have funnel with a landing page to collect contacts.
When you import contacts from a funnel stage, you can add tags to those contacts or any other specific information to make things easier for you in the future. Subsequently, you can add more tags to the contacts as they interact with your funnels.
ClickFunnels also provides you detailed contact profiles. They consider all the actions of the contact and then give a boiled-down version of their behavior in the profile section.
Some of the metrics available in the contact profile section are social, recency, value, action score, etc. The scores and numbers in the profile would tell you how recently the contact interacted with your campaign, the number of purchases they have made, how much money they’ve spent on the funnel, and so on.
Apart from these figures, you will also get the usual information, such as the address, phone number, and other personal information linked to the client’s profile.
If you launch a funnel with multiple stages, it is apparent that you will keep losing participants at each stage. But that doesn’t mean that you don’t have anything to do with those prospects anymore.
For starters, you now know that they are interested in what you are offering. You can nurture the relationship so that the lead turns to you when she is ready to make a purchase in the future.
On some occasions, you may want to have the prospect in some other funnel if they opt-out of one. It might involve you adding a tag to the contact and then have all such tagged contacts in another contact list.
There will also be times when you’d want to send emails or messages to the leads within the funnel. ClickFunnels lets you take care of all of this and much more with its automation feature. You can set up specific actions and send texts or emails using it. Let’s have a glance at all the different things it has to offer.
An automation action would help you when you want to get notifications or modify tags and lists. You can automate actions not just for ClickFunnels but also for all the third-party apps that you have integrated with your account.
You will get more options for actions depending on the apps that you have integrated. If it’s only ClickFunnels, then there are four actions that you can automate.
Setting up automation doesn’t take much time. You start by specifying the name and condition for the automation. Then you choose the integration on which the action will be applicable.
Finally, you get to specify the action. It can be to add a contact to the list, to add or remove a tag, or to send out an email notification.
You can then set up a delay in terms of days or hours if you want to give it some time before an automatic action takes place.
For instance, if you want to add leads to a different list, if they don’t make the purchase on your sales page, then you can have automation with an appropriate delay for the same.
You can set up a delay of a few hours after the prospect visits the landing pages, and then you can add them to a separate list.
Let’s take the above example again. Suppose you don’t want to add the tag just now and remind the user to complete the purchase once again.
You can use the email section within the automation tool to take care of the reminder. It won’t take much time to set up if you have already taken care of the SMTP integration.
You can choose the condition for the trigger, specify who will get the email, and the rest will be the usual email part. You mention the subject, choose an email template, make the modifications in the template, and your emails are set to go.
And if those automations weren’t enough, you get to send out SMS text as well. You will have to be using the Twilio integration for it.
The setting up process is almost the same as the previous two. You need to select the trigger condition, enter the message, set the delay in days or hours, and you are done.
All three automation types bring a lot to the table, and there is a lot for you to gain with efficient use.
The name here might be slightly misleading. As you already know, ClickFunnels comes with the capability of sending out emails, and you can send out emails to more than one recipient at a time.
But it doesn’t mean that you will be able to manage full-fledged email campaigns with ClickFunnels. The platform provides some features that help you do more than sending out plain text emails, but it is more along the lines of a one-time thing.
The process is very simple. You go to the email broadcast tab and take care of SMTP settings first. There is an entirely different process to take care of SMTP, and you won’t be able to send any emails without it. So make sure you take care of SMTP first.
Once you have taken care of it, you will have to mention the subject line, choose the right email list for the campaign, and write down the sender’s name.
There is also an option that lets you send emails to only those contacts who have been active over the specified number of days in the past. The feature allows you to make sure that you reach out to only those who seem interested at the moment. You can always think of something else for the others.
The next step would be to work on the body of the email. This is one area where ClickFunnels shines much brighter than the rest of the landing page tools.
They provide you with a lot of professional email templates to get the job done. You can preview and then select the template you like. You will get the same capabilities to edit the email template as you got in the case of landing pages.
You can send out a test mail before making the emails go live. It will help you know if everything is in order. Finally, you can schedule the emails as you please. Once you save the changes, ClickFunnels will take care of the rest.
The email campaign section would come in handy in a lot of situations and can save you a lot of time and effort.
You can’t run a business or campaign based on hunches and intuitions. There is always be a need for some data to make informed decisions. And since language can be a bit manipulative and misleading at times, numbers always put forward a clearer image.
ClickFunnels doesn’t come with a dedicated reports section, but it provides you with enough stats at the right places so that you don’t feel any shortage of information.
You will get the first glimpse of statistics right on the dashboard. You will see numbers for gross revenue, successful purchase, optins, and views.
These four metrics alone will tell you a lot about the state of your funnels. We would've loved to see the number of leads generated with the campaigns, but most people usually spend this much on a tool primarily to make more money and not to gather leads.
You can also change the period for this data. You can choose anything from the last 24 hours to the past week, past month, past quarter, etc. The dashboard stats work well for both long term and short term plans.
The next set of numbers would be on the left side of the dashboard. It shows you the number of contacts you have listed on the platform, the number of visitors on your funnels, the number of pages you created, and also the number of funnels you created on ClickFunnels.
They have created levels based on how extensively one uses the platform, and we think it’s a great strategy to motivate the user to be more active on the platform. You will get to see your level on the dashboard, as well.
These were all broader numbers that you can associate with the entire business. You will have to go slightly deeper if you want to see how individual funnels are doing.
There is a stats page for all the funnels you create, and you can go there and assess the performance of individual campaigns there.
The stats section will vary slightly depending on the objective of the funnel. If it’s a sales funnel, then you will have some monetary stats right at the top of the section. It will show you the earnings per click, gross sales, and average cart value.
For each landing page, you get to see the number of views, optins, sales, and earnings, depending on what applies to which page.
If you have opted for split testing on any of the pages in the funnel, you will see the stats for the two variants separately. It will allow you to make out which variant is doing better and, thus, use it for the rest of the campaign.
Let us now talk about a seemingly interesting feature that is turning a lot of heads.
There are a lot of ways one can boost sales, and one of the trending ways to promote a product is to use affiliate marketing. Businesses and buyers dig it equally.
Businesses like it because it brings them revenue, and they need to pay for marketing only after the sale. They don’t mind paying slightly higher charges since there is a guaranteed sale involved in the process.
Buyers like it because they find it easier to trust individuals rather than businesses. And since influencers don’t risk making bad recommendations these days, they get great deals, more often than not.
With ClickFunnels’ Backpack feature, you can have affiliate marketing for your campaign without the need to do the legwork for finding the right affiliates.
ClickFunnels has a lot of affiliate marketers connected to the platform, and you can have their services for your campaign to get even better results.
It is a simple process to set it up. You need to select the campaign, choose the percentage or flat rate that you are going to provide to the marketer, and you are good to go.
There are also a few advanced settings that you implement that you want. You can have a multi-level affiliate structure working for you. Your affiliates can get more affiliates for you under this establishment.
If you can identify the affiliates that are doing better than others, then you have better incentives for them to motivate them even more.
You can give Backpack a try if you aren’t sure about the advertising part. The fact that you will be paying after a confirmed sale is a good enough affirmation.
ClickFunnels’ introduction often gets people pumped up, and they feel like it’s the only thing they need for a successful business. And surprisingly, it might be true for some of the businesses. Sometimes, the only thing holding them back is a targeted marketing strategy, and ClickFunnels can easily take care of that.
It helps one not just with landing pages but funnels that have already worked wonders for a lot of businesses. They have also kept things relatively simple for users to make sure that the product is not just for the tech-savvy folks.
They make sure to guide you through all the sections of the tool for better user experience. However, they could’ve made the interface a bit more intuitive. The dashboard has way too many components to overwhelm the user.
Even the interface for funnels isn’t as intuitive as it could’ve been.
Having said that, one can take nothing away from ClickFunnels when it comes to the quality and effectiveness of the landing pages one can create on this platform.
There are plenty of beautiful templates, and the editor allows you to add the elements you want. The landing pages on this platform are as professional as they can be.
The same goes for funnels. We don’t think they could’ve done a better job with the funnels. You can find all kinds of funnels for all the different needs that your business might have. Both paid and free funnels seemed equally effective.
The automation sweetens the deal even more. You don’t need to focus much on the logistics as the software can do that for you. This way, you can channel all your energy towards the sales campaign.
The emailing capability was a bonus. One usually doesn’t expect that from a landing page builder. We also think that they have integrations to keep everyone happy, and you will find ClickFunnels to be compatible with most of your tools.
They don’t have as detailed of an analytics section as one would want, but then they took care of it in their own way. Instead of finding everything in one place, you will have to visit the sections, and it should not prove to be that big of a hassle.
The Backpack was one among the additional incentives one can get for being on the platform, and we liked the concept very much.
ClickFunnels doesn’t come cheap, but it can help you make way more money than most of the landing page builders. They offer a free trial for a period of 2 weeks, and you should consider trying it out.