ClickFunnels Review: The Best Funnel Builder Today? [Updated 2019]
Marketing funnels are the topic of the town lately. They can take your digital marketing campaigns to the next level if done right. ClickFunnels is one of the more popular sales funnel builder platforms out there.
However, it's always a good idea to do your own research before you purchase a product. This way you can find the best products and avoid scams. It only makes sense to buy something that's value packed, doesn't it? Who even wants to drain money down the sink?
In this review, we will take a closer look at the popular online marketing suite and share the things you need to know. From ease of use to the features to pricing to comparisons with other tools, we got you covered.
Feel free to jump through sections of to browse through the topics of your choice.
ClickFunnels is a unique tool which simplifies the task of building professional-grade marketing funnels. It was created in 2014 by Russell Brunson who is also the author of USA best-seller books Dot Com Secrets and Network Marketing Secrets.
A typical funnel might incorporate one or more opt-in/squeeze pages, an email autoresponder (to send a sequence of emails that move them up your value ladder), plus one or more sales pages, members area, order forms, additional content etc.
In the past, this would require you to have a website, hosting, an automation software, landing page software, split-testing software, membership site software, and probably a host of designers and programmers to cobble the whole lot together and that would be a mess.
If you’re interesting in learning more about funnels, and whether or not you need them, definitely check out this article. Click Funnels lets you do all of that under one roof. With it, you can:
You can achieve a lot more than this with their flagship plan - Etison suite. There's backpack with which you can start your own affiliate program and Actionetics which can potentially replace your email marketing service.
Features At a Glance
Before we show you how to create a funnel with the software and the usual on-boarding stuff, let's take a quick look at some of the features first:
Getting Started With ClickFunnels
Click Funnels has a free 14-day trial that will let you explore the product at your own pace, and you can try all its features to see if it’s suitable for you.
The signup process for the free trial is pretty straightforward. You have to enter your email and card details when you signup for the trial. Your card is not charged until you complete the trial, you are free to cancel anytime.
Many people don’t bother to watch the tutorials when they get a new product, preferring to dive in and figure it out themselves. However, by doing that you’re actually wasting a lot of time, and it takes you way longer to get up and running with the product.
ClickFunnels combats this by offering you a bribe in a free “#FunnelHacker” t-shirt, and a ready-made email funnel, if you just watch the introductory tutorial video. (CF users go crazy for these tees and the community is SO enthusiastic it’s almost like a cult!)
We loved the training, everything is explained very clearly and quickly. As of this writing, there are 4 beginner-friendly videos, a few minutes each, and they are well-worth watching (even if you don’t want the shirt!).
Building Your First Funnel
Log into your ClickFunnels account – once you’ve gone through the introductory videos, just follow the steps they showed you in building your first funnel.
Kick things off by choosing the type of funnel you want to build:
For this case study, we’ll build a simple squeeze/opt-in funnel with the objective of ‘Collect Emails’.
You would give the funnel a name, and then create your email squeeze page, and a thank you page, either from scratch, or using one of their ready-made templates, that would make for a good starting point.
For this exercise, we chose to use one of their templates and modify it, rather than starting from scratch. There are a ton of free templates available to choose from or you can also get paid ones from the clickfunnel's marketplace. It has some decent community created plug and play templates.
You may want to create one from scratch, but actually why bother? If they are good enough for Russell to use, they are probably good enough for you!
After choosing a template, we replaced the sales copy with our own wording, added the images, and that was it. From beginning till the end, this hardly took us 9 minutes, and that was our first time using the product.
If we do it again, now that we’ve had a little practice, this would take about 3 minutes. This is how the finished landing page looks like:
The next step is to create the thank you/bridge page that people are taken to after they opt-in, and to connect the form to our autoresponder so that we can deliver the report and then send them follow up emails.
In all, to create a simple landing page with an email opt-in page, a thank-you page, and to link it to our autoresponder – that hardly took half an hour. You don’t need any web hosting or website to publish the pages (although you can publish them on your own website if you want to).
The ease of use of ClickFunnels, and the quality of the finished pages, was second to none. They are all mobile-responsive too which means they look good across all the devices.
We still use Thrive products for our websites, and we love it. However, if you don't like WordPress or don't want to use it for some reason, CF is what you should select instead. The tools are not identical though - Click Funnels does a whole lot more, it therefore costs more too.
[Thrive only works with WordPress, and you need to have your own website to be able to host your pages. ClickFunnels is totally standalone, you don’t even need to own a website!]
Developing More Sophisticated Funnels
ClickFunnels claims that you can build any type of funnel you can possibly imagine, and from what we have seen that’s certainly true. Here are some of the different types of funnels you can create with ClickFunnels:
- Lead Capture Funnels - Used to grow your email/mailing list.
- Sales Page Funnels - Used to sell products and services, incorporating upsells/downsells/one time offers or OTOs to maximize your profit per visitor.
- Webinar Funnels - Promote and get registrations for your webinars.
- Online Courses - you can sell and host your online course all under one roof which is ClickFunnels.
- Membership Websites - Get a recurring income stream by creating membership sites within CF.
ClickFunnels comes packed with tons of ready to go templates for a lot of funnel types, if you want to start fresh, you can also do one from scratch! This is where ClickFunnels absolutely shone.
The editor is extremely easy to use, everything seems to look good by default, and you don’t need any programming/coding skills. All you do is drag and drop different elements onto the page, and change the wording and appearance (the color, font etc) to suit your requirements.
A funnel is not just a set of pages, it is also a set of actions that would take the user sequentially through a series of steps. Your funnel will probably begin with an opt-in page to capture your visitors’ email address.
Typically, you will want to offer them some sort of opt-in bribe also known as a lead magnet, as a freebie to get them to give up their email address.
Once they have opted-in, they will get to a followup sequence that will send them an automated email sequence over the course of next few days. They will then be redirected to a bridge page where you’ll give them the lead magnet.
On this page, you can offer them a chance to buy something.
This could be a never-to-be-repeated one time offer (OTO), or a low-cost tripwire offer designed to weed out the buyers from the freebie seekers.
Depending on the choices they make, they may be presented with other offers (upsells and downsells), or sent different emails depending on their progress through your funnel.
So a funnel isn’t just about creating a few pages, it’s also about linking these pages together with different action flows, and integrating them with autoresponders and payment processors, so that the whole process happens literally on autopilot.
Prospects enter from one end, and money comes out of the other - that is probably the simplest description of a funnel.
ClickFunnels provides you with a platform where you can build your entire funnel, including email automation and payment processing — without needing anything else, or even a website, all under one roof!
It also provides comprehensive tracking and analytics so that you would know how each step in your funnel is performing, and optimize it to improve conversions and profits.
One of the main ways you can optimize your funnels with ClickFunnels is to use the built-in split testing feature to test out different landing pages, sales copy etc. to see what’s converting better.
It’s a great system, covering all the extensive facilities ClickFunnels has to offer, is outside the scope of this review. The best thing to do is to sign up for the free trial, and then take the free training you will get after you sign up.
Once you’ve watched the training videos (and DO watch them, they don’t take long), take it for a spin yourself. That’s the best way to get a feel for it.
Community & The Two Comma Club
One of our favorite things about Clickfunnels is the community aspect of it. There are thousands of members in the Facebook group known as “funnel hackers”.
This is beneficial because the group is supportive of beginners and not just help them make money online but also solve tech issues quickly.
Another good thing about the community is the ability to ask strategy related questions and have people who are knowledgeable in the same software you are using who can give you a quick response.
A lot of the times, some of these people are millionaires and part of Russell Brunsons’ 2 comma club. The 2 comma club award is an award to people who have made in excess of a million dollars as a Clickfunnels affiliate!
It doesn’t stop there. Clickfunnels also hosts an annual event known as “Funnel Hacking live”. This event has been going strong since the year after Clickfunnels launched in 2015.
Third Party Integrations
ClickFunnels offers integration with a ton of third-party solutions. Besides email marketing, they offer payment integration too. With ClickFunnels, you can integrate an e-commerce website to your landing page.
Some popular integrations include
ClickFunnels Affiliate Program
ClickFunnels has one of the best affiliate programs which pays out 40% of the monthly ClickFunnels subscription for any customers referred by you. And these are monthly recurring commissions — you get that payment every month, for the lifetime of the customer!
You hardly need a bunch of referrals to maintain a healthy cash flow.
Every clickfunnels customer is eligible to receive these commissions when they refer someone. You can even promote Clickfunnels without being a user.
If you use clickfunnels, program helps you defray the costs of your monthly subscription just by recommending a product that you personally use.
If you’re into affiliate marketing, then you’d love this because of the high value recurring commissions you can receive.
The free training teaches how you can do well promoting Click Funnels. If you’re a network marketer, you’d greatly benefit from it.
Click Funnels comes with a FREE 14-day trial during which you pay $0 and can use the software without any limitation.
After the trial, you can either get the standard plan which is $97 a month or get their flagship package – Etison suite at $297 a month.
However, there’s a secret pricing option which isn’t visible to the general audience called the ‘shared funnel only’ option. This option is limited to 3 funnels, 10 pages, and 1000 visitors per month maximum.
With click funnels, you can create a funnel and share it with others. As soon as they click on your share funnels link, it’s downloaded onto their clickfunnels account in a jiffy.
Simply login to your clickfunnels account and it will be waiting for you in the funnels tab.
When you’d get a funnel share URL from an existing click funnels user, you’d be asked to create a free account if you aren’t a click funnels member already.
If you’d sign up for a ClickFunnel trial directly (through links which are not shared funnel URLs), you’d never see the ‘Limited shared funnels only option’. It’s limited but as long as it fits the bill, it can be a decent option here.
Here’s one of our high converting funnel URL in case you want to get a discount and get the hidden $19 per month cf plan. Get it here (you will see the $19 option).
If you want a video tutorial on how to get the $19 CF plan, here’s a step by step YouTube video which explains the same.
Clickfunnels has a bunch of competitors – shopify, kajabi, thrive architect, builderall, samcart, leadpages, infusionsoft to name a few.
Most of these are decent services but clickfunnels is way ahead of all these in every single department. Not to forget, CF is an all in one suite. When Brunson says you can ditch every online service you currently use for clickfunnels, he literally means it!
ClickFunnels vs Thrive Content Builder (Thrive Landing Pages)
We used Thrive Content Builder and Instabuilder the entire time to build our landing pages in the past, there are a bunch of click funnels alternatives but they don’t hold a candle. Both are decent products, but they only do a very small part of what ClickFunnels does.
Thrive only works with WordPress (and you must have a website ready to go to be able to use it), and it only makes pages. It doesn’t include an autoresponder or some of the other advanced features you’ll get with Click Funnels.
If you do have a WordPress website, and an autoresponder service, then Thrive can be an alternative, but it is only designed for making pages, rather than funnels, so it lacks a lot of the features that ClickFunnels has. However, Thrive is still AMAZING at what it does. It just does not have all the features ClickFunnels has (worth mentioning ClickFunnels is also a little more expensive).
ClickFunnels vs LeadPages
Like Thrive Content Builder, LeadPages is designed basically for building landing pages, rather than integrated funnels, so it’s not a like-for-like comparison again.
LeadPages also lets you build good looking landing pages that are mobile responsive, but LeadPages is really all about producing single pages, rather than linking them together to create sophisticated funnels. ClickFunnels is focused on building funnels, not just opt-in pages.
ClickFunnels vs Infusionsoft
Infusionsoft, is quite complex and overpriced for what it offers. You can’t just get started on your own - you have to pay somebody to set it up for you which may cost up to $2000. Thereafter you’re in for at least $300 per month, and it is notoriously difficult to use. That’s the bad bit over.
Infusionsoft is capable of building very sophisticated funnels too, but it’s not very good at making good looking pages (ClickFunnels is way ahead), and it’s certainly not quick and easy.
ClickFunnels vs Builderall
Builderall is a cheaper alternative to clickfunnels but it’s very limited, and the platform is not half as polished as clickfunnels is.
It can be a good starting point for those on a budget. But, if we were to use one tool, we would use and recommend clickfunnels any day. If you're interested in checking out clickfunnels alternatives, definitely recommend you read this review as well.
Things We Liked
This ClickFunnels review will be incomplete if we don't list the pros and cons. Here are the things we liked:
Things We Didn't Like
There are definitely a few things with CF, where there's room for improvement. Following are the cons of the popular marketing suite:
ClickFunnels Review - Final Thoughts
ClickFunnels is an excellent product for creating and hosting sales funnels. It was designed from the ground up, purely for that one sole purpose, and it does it very well.
It is not the cheapest product in the world by any means ($97 basic level, $297 for all the bells and whistles), but it can save you the cost of several other products that you will no longer need, which may actually make it one of the cheaper options.
The whole purpose of ClickFunnels is to increase your profits. If you use it well, it has the potential to pay for itself, so the monthly price shouldn’t be a concern. Especially at the entry level (you can upgrade later).
There is also another huge benefit in using ClickFunnels, in addition to the product itself, that nobody talks about. That is the education that you get along the way. Not just the product training, but the whole mindset that ClickFunnels is built around.
It pervades everything they do, and if you become a part of the ClickFunnels community, it will level up your marketing game as there’s a lot to learn from hundreds of thousands of experienced marketers. It is more than worth it for the education alone!
What do you think of this review of ClickFunnels? What are your favorite features? Let us know in the comments down below!
- Simple to use drag and drop page builder
- Builds fully fledged funnels, membership websites in no time
- All in one software platform - no need to buy separate tools, everything under one hood
- Share funnels - create a funnel and share it with others with 1-click, ready to deploy out of the box
- Create your own affiliate program and manage affiliates with Backpack
- Expensive, not the best option if you're low on budget or if you don't have a product
- Support could've been better, misses out on live chat support. Only email support is available as of this writing.
- Tons of features/options to choose from. Now, this isn't necessarily a con but it can be overwhelming at times if you're just starting out.