If you’re looking into sales funnel software, first of all, well done. You might be one step ahead of your competitors.
As any marketer knows, if you’re going to make it in the modern climate, you’re going to need an intelligent digital marketing strategy, and sales funnels could very well help you with that.
As an advocate of inbound marketing, the idea of subtly guiding a user through a series of steps, offering rich content along the way, makes me think that sales funnels could be the perfect match for an inbound strategy. But I wanted to look into exactly how they work and how easy the software is to use before I made my mind up.
In this article I’ll be sharing what I learnt whilst reviewing a number of sales funnel software and pointing you towards the best tool for your needs.
It’s worth pointing out from the get go that, though some tools market themselves as sales funnel builders, they might be missing the crucial features that you need. For example, email marketing or webinar hosting isn’t always included. You might also find that other more modest (and cheaper) software might be enough for you.
Table of Contents
Before I go into the various sales funnel software providers, you might be wondering what a sales funnel is?
If you’ve worked in sales or marketing for long then you’ll know that leads can be at varying stages of the buyer process. In fact, depending on the complexity of your product or service, it might take months to nurture and convert this lead into a customer.
If done right, then setting up a sales funnel can greatly streamline this process and hopefully give the user a better all-round buyer experience that ultimately guides them to what they’re looking for, and violá, they make a purchase!…Or even better, become a loyal customer.
Your sales funnel will be made up of a series of steps that consist of various marketing assets, for example, social media campaigns, landing pages and email.
Sales funnel software can provide you with a holistic view of your sales and marketing efforts (and results) at a glance. (Though not all sales funnel software comes with a funnel view – more on that below.)
GetResponse’s funnel view
Let’s take a look at a couple examples.
A sales funnel for an entrepreneur offering online courses in marketing might look a bit like this:
All of these actions in the buyer’s journey will be tracked in the sales funnel software used by the entrepreneur, meaning that she can see clearly at exactly which point users are dropping off and where they’re converting.
Also, as sales funnel builders come with anything from landing page editors, email marketing services and even a platform to host courses and webinars, she has everything she needs under one roof, which is no doubt much more economical than setting all this up on various platforms.
I don’t know about you but I’m starting to see some real benefits to having all your marketing efforts in one place, especially if the sales funnel software has its own CRM. But is it really worth cancelling all your existing subscriptions in exchange for sales funnel software?
If you are just starting out then using sales funnel software might be a great fit for you as your upfront costs can be kept to a minimum. You won’t need to worry about hiring a web developer or signing up to a dozen tools, however, you will want to be sure that the software you go for includes exactly what you need. For example, while some offer webinar hosting, others may not, and if this is a crucial part of your business, you’ll want to find a provider that caters to your needs.
If you’re already signed up to a number of tools, you’ll have to assess costs and if it’s worth taking out this service. While you can integrate the sales funnel software with other apps, this might impact on the user experience and be more hassle for you.
Take a look at the software I reviewed below to see which would be a good fit.
GetResponse is probably the most complete solution on this list. Having recently introduced their Conversion Funnel feature to their email marketing software, you can now set up everything from social media campaigns to landing pages to webinars to email automations. You can even sell your products through GetResponse or integrate your account with your existing ecommerce.
In terms of sales funnel software, GetResponse’s Conversion Funnel is quick and easy to set up, and visually, you can see exactly how your leads filter through. They also have a good selection of modern-looking landing page and newsletter templates.
If your business offers webinars, GetResponse could be a great choice for you.
-Plus: $49 per month for 1,000 users – $95 per month for 10,000 users
3 users, email marketing, landing pages, webinar, leads and sales funnels, forms & surveys, automations, ecommerce tools, social media ads, templates & images, tracking & reporting, built-in CRM.
-Professional: $99 per month for 1,000 users – $165 per month for 10,000 users
All Plus features plus 5 users, unlimited paid webinars, contact scoring & tagging, automation builder and segmentation.
+ Very complete all-in-one service! I really liked the fact that you can see all the stages of your funnel and the conversion rates at a glance.
– Because you pay based on your contact size, depending on the number of contacts you have, GetResponse can get very pricey.
Kartra is an all-in-one platform that includes a website and landing page builder, lead database (CRM), email marketing and automations, opt-in forms, ticketing and live chat, video hosting and checkout forms.
Getting started with Kartra is really simple due to their checklist found within your dashboard. They literally take you through every step, meaning that you don’t have that feeling of apprehension often felt with other sales funnel software. Because their offering is so comprehensive, you’ll save a ton of money only investing in one tool (so long as your contact list doesn’t skyrocket).
Depending on your business, videos might be a key part of your sales funnel, or they might even be what your selling. Kartra allows you to host and optimize the videos on their platform, with the option to add opt-in forms and call-to-action buttons. You can also see which leads are watching which videos and up to what point.
Starter: $79 per month billed annually / $99 billed monthly
Up to 2,500 leads, 15,000 emails per month, 50GB bandwidth per month, host 100 pages, sell 20 products, 2 membership sites, 1 custom domain.
Silver plan: $149 per month billed annually / $199 billed monthly
Up to 12,500 leads, 125,000 emails per month, 125GB bandwidth per month, host unlimited pages, sell unlimited products, unlimited membership sites, 3 custom domains.
Gold plan: $249 per month billed annually / $299 billed monthly
Up to 25,000 leads, 250,000 emails per month, 200GB bandwidth per month, host unlimited pages, sell unlimited products, unlimited membership sites, 5 custom domains.
Find out more about Kartra's pricing here.
+ Personally, I’m a fan of Kartra’s all-in-one platform. Their checklist makes it easy to progress through the necessary set up steps and the layout isn’t overwhelming at all. They also have a training portal with helpful video tutorials.
– From what I’ve seen so far, it’s pretty hard to fault Kartra’s offering. The only thing I’d say is that due to Kartra’s limited list of integrations, if you’re looking to carry on using a number of other tools, Kartra might be more of a burden than a solution – though they do say that they’re adding to their list of integrations.
ClickFunnels is designed for entrepreneurs and small businesses with little to no coding skills who want to create and systemize their online marketing and sales funnels. To be honest, their overly ostentatious marketing doesn’t fill me with confidence. I mean, why in their video demo do they need to jump in a private plane and fly from Miami to Chicago in order to build a sales funnel? Seems a little excessive if you ask me.
But back to the actual product.
Like they proclaim, their landing page editor is easy to use and the sales funnel examples they give are really helpful for beginners. A pop-up editor is also available within the landing page editor, which makes it easier to see how it will look and behave when published.
If you get stuck, they have a help button within the builder, which takes you to the knowledge base or opens a chat with an agent.
Their templates aren’t great. Like their actual website, they’re overly salesy and busy and I can’t imagine them instilling a ton of confidence in the user. I’ve definitely seen much better from other providers on this list.
Starter plan: $97/month
20 funnels, 100 pages, 20,000 visitors, unlimited contacts, 3 custom domains, A/B split testing, opt-in funnels, all advanced funnels (sales, webinar, membership), order pages and up and down-sell pages.
You’ll have to integrate with your email service provider as email marketing is not included in the standard plan. Here are our top choices.
Etison Suite: $297/month
Everything is unlimited. You also have access to in-built email marketing services, lead scoring, advanced segmentation and affiliate management software.
Find out more about ClickFunnels pricing here.
+ The funnel builder (where you can see the various steps in your funnel) makes setting up fairly easy. Their ‘Cookbook’ section is very helpful for those just starting out or in need of ideas, as it offers tutorials.
– It would be nice to manage your email marketing within the tool, but it’s not worth paying the extra cost for the Etison Suite plan when there are so many great affordable email providers. Their landing page templates look very outdated and overly salesy, quite a lot like their own marketing. Check out these ClickFunnels alternatives.
Infusionsoft, or rather Keap, as it’s now called, offers a pretty complete service. Marketed towards small business owners, users can make use of their CRM, marketing automation, landing page builder and reports (top tier plan). If setting up is overwhelming, you can pay a one-time set up fee and receive a number of coaching sessions – this will cost you anywhere from $199 to $1,999 depending on the plan you take out and the amount of help you require.
You can integrate Keap with the existing tools you use, such as Shopify, Magento and WordPress.
All plans are based on 500 contacts and 1 user, though you can pay extra for more of both.
Pro: $149 p/month
Includes CRM, segmentation, appointments, business phone line and text messaging, quotes, invoices and payments, marketing automation, recurring payments, landing page builder, sales pipeline automation and forms.
Infusionsoft: $199 p/month
Pro features plus reporting, lead scoring, online selling, checkout pages and affiliate tracking and management. Does not include business phone line and text messaging or appointments.
+ Their visual sales funnel builder is easy to use and has plenty of options available.
– Though it’s marketed towards small businesses, it has kind of a medium-sized business price tag – in fact, it’s the most expensive sales funnel software on this list. Also, 500 contacts is not very many considering how much you’re paying.
Wishpond is a really easy-to-use marketing platform that allows you to create landing pages, pop-ups, social media contests and it takes care of your email marketing & automation. I particularly liked their range of eye-catching templates, which are painless to set up. If you’re doing a lot of giveaways, for example, on social media, then Wispond has a ton of sweepstakes landing page templates and popups.
Their marketing automation isn’t bad at all, with plenty of conditions to choose from. You can also A/B test your newsletters to find out which performs better.
Starting Out: $75 per month billed monthly / $49 per month billed yearly
Unlimited landing pages, social media contests and pop-ups, email drip campaigns, marketing automation, unlimited user accounts, maximum 1,000 leads.
Everything You Need: $149 per month billed monthly / $99 per month billed yearly
Rapid Growth: $299 per month billed monthly / $199 per month billed yearly
First in line customer support, free implementation support, 10,000 leads.
(Once you go over 10,000 leads, the prices start to really jump up.)
+ The software is very user friendly and offers a ton of attractive templates and advanced automation workflow options. Their Starting Out plan is pretty affordable for what it is and their limit of 1,000 contacts should be enough for small businesses to get started.
– In terms of using it as a sales funnel builder, it’s missing the ability to see how everything works together as there is no visual sales funnel builder.
Thrive Themes is a pretty complete package. Though you can pay for just what you want of the following features, I’d recommend going for the Membership plan where you’ll get everything for just $30 per month (paid quarterly).
Opt-in forms and landing pages with A/B testing, conversion-focused WordPress themes, visual drag and drop website builder, widgets, headline optimizer, scarcity campaign builder, testimonials plugin, quiz builder and online course builder.
Membership: $30 per month paid quarterly / $19 per month paid annually
25 sites, all plugins and themes.
Agency Membership: $69 per month paid quarterly / $49 per month paid annually
25 sites, all plugins and themes.
+ Considering all that’s included, Thrive Themes is very affordable. It seems to be a solution more for agencies and developers (hence why you can use the features on such a large number of websites). If your business is online courses, ThriveThemes could be a good option.
– Missing email marketing and automation. Unfortunately, Thrive Themes does not offer a free trial.
Leadpages could be a good option for entrepreneurs just starting out, as it allows you to build your own mobile responsive website from scratch with their simple drag and drop editor, as well as landing pages, alert bars and pop-ups. They don’t offer email marketing software (which is probably why it’s a fair bit cheaper than the other tools), though it seems simple enough to integrate this. The best thing about this sales funnel software is that you can collect unlimited leads and you won’t be charged for them – all plans are unlimited.
Standard: $37 per month billed monthly / $25 billed annually
1 website, unlimited landing pages, pop-ups, alert bars, free custom domain (when you’re billed annually), free hosting, Facebook & Instagram ad builder, weekly group coaching.
Pro: $79 per month billed monthly / $48 billed annually
Everything in the Standard plan plus online sales and payments, unlimited A/B split testing on landing pages, 10 opt-in SMS campaigns.
Advanced: $321 per month billed monthly / $199 billed annually
Everything in the Pro plan plus advanced integrations, 5 pro sub accounts, 50 extra opt-in SMS campaigns, one-to-one set up assistance and Leadpages virtual workshops.
+ Unlike other sales funnel software providers, you’ll always pay the same, regardless of how many leads you collect. Their template selection is modern and sorted by conversion rate, though it is a very small collection. Setting up your website couldn’t be easier!
– Doesn’t include email marketing software and automations – you’ll have to integrate with another provider. Their Standard plan is fairly reasonable, however, when you compare their offering with others, their features are a bit limited and not worth the hefty price tag attached to their Advanced plan.
As the name implies, Landingi’s main focus is landing pages, and though that isn’t to say that you can’t build sales funnels with their software, you’ll need to rely on other providers to do so. You’ll need to integrate the landing page software with your email marketing provider in order to add leads to automations (you can send very simple autoresponders through Landingi but I’d leave the automations to a provider like ActiveCampaign). In their Automate plan ($79 per month) or higher, you can integrate your CRM.
Based on the fact that you’ll need to rely on a number of other tools, I wouldn’t recommend Landingi for your sales funnels. However, I’ve included them for their great selection of mobile responsive landing page templates. They are some of the best I’ve seen, and really easy to edit and publish. If you do run into any problems, they have live chat installed in your dashboard, and they’re very quick to respond and help you out.
One thing you need to be aware of is that you’ll have to integrate each landing page form with your CRM or email marketing software every time – this can get messy and lead to errors.
Core: $39 per month billed monthly / $29 billed annually
Unlimited landing pages, leads, traffic, custom domains and account users. Drag & drop creator, cloud hosting, lead inbox, email, chat and analytics integrations, 150 landing page templates.
Create: $59 per month billed monthly / $45 billed annually
All Core features plus 50 premium landing page templates, custom fonts, 5000 free images library, 600 free icons library, background videos & images and lightboxes.
Automate: $79 per month billed monthly / $59 billed annually
All Create features plus Zapier integrations, CRM integration, A/B split testing, autoresponder and campaign scheduler.
+ Very good selection of modern-looking templates that look as though they would convert well. Not a bad price for a landing page builder.
– The autoresponders sent through Landingi are very basic. It also took me a long time to find where to edit these as the section is hidden within the form settings, as are the integrations. As a landing page builder Landingi does a good job, but when it comes to sales funnels it is a bit limited – you’d be better off going with a provider like Kartra or Clickfunnels.
If you’re still curious, you can try Landingi out for free
Instapage is a landing page builder which can be used as part of your sales funnel. It proclaims that you could see a 400% increase in conversions using their software by making use of their conversion-optimized, use-case based templates and sophisticated A/B testing. This is great for businesses that only need landing pages, however, when it comes to sales funnel software, there are other more complete options available. At $129 a month, this is a bit pricey.
Core: $129 per month / $99 billed annually
Landing page builder with 89 templates, integrations, A/B testing, heatmaps, conversion analytics and forms. 30,000 unique visitors, 30 published landing pages, 5 sub accounts and 5 team members.
Enterprise: Custom, needs-based offer
Everything in Core plus editable global blocks (used in the editor), AMP pages and experiences, guaranteed uptime, professional page launch services, page migration services, dedicated CSM, custom fonts and custom feature implementation.
+ For a landing page editor it’s pretty complete. Heatmaps is a nice feature to see how your users behave on the page, which can help you to improve the page’s performance.
– If you’re looking for more than just a landing page builder then Instapage isn’t for you. There are much more complete packages on this list of sales funnel software. Also, as a landing page builder it’s not the cheapest – you might be better off going for Landingi.
If you’d like to try them out for yourself, sign up for Instapage’s 14-day free trial
|Email marketing||✅||15,000 email per month||Only in expensive top tier plan||✅||✅||No||No||No||No|
|Landing pages||Unlimited. A/B split testing||100 pages||100 pages. A/B split testing||Unlimited
A/B split testing
A/B split testing
A/B split testing
|Opt-in forms and popups||✅||✅||✅||✅||✅||✅||✅||✅||✅|
On top tier plan
|Social media campaigns||✅||No||No||No||✅||No||✅||No||No|
|Payment processing||Payment gateway integration||✅||Payment gateway integration||✅||No||Payment gateway integration||With Pro plan||Payment gateway integration||Payment gateway integration|
|Pricing||$49 p/month 1,000 contacts||$99 p/month
|$97 p/month Unlimited contacts||$149 p/month
|$30 p/month||$37 p/month||$39 p/month||
30,000 unique visitors
If you’re still with me, well done! You should now have a good idea as to which sales funnel software is right for your business. As you’ve seen, prices can vary quite a bit and often important features like email marketing are not part of the core offering, meaning that you have to pay extra for this service with another provider.
In terms of most complete package and value for money, I’d recommend GetResponse. If you’re a small business starting out then their Plus plan ($49 p/month) provides you with all the tools you need to get your sales funnels working seamlessly in no time. However, there is one catch I should make you aware of. GetResponse didn’t do so well in our recent deliverability study, landing an average of 77% of emails in the main inbox of ISPs. That’s not to say that the other tools that offer email marketing on this list would see better results, we’d have to test them to find out.
ClickFunnels and Kartra both have fairly easy-to-use software and plenty of video tutorials and help getting started, the only thing is, neither of them have a great template selection. If you want to be able to see your sales funnel visually, Clickfunnels is better at showing you how all your actions fit together, though they do have a limit on sales funnels (20) and traffic (20,000 visitors), though no limit on contacts collected, whereas Kartra sets a limit of 2,500.
So, in the end, it really depends on what’s important to you.
I hope you found this article helpful. Please share your experiences and questions below. I’m curious to find out how you do with your sales funnels.
14 April 2020 – small update