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There are many factors you need to consider when looking for the right software to automate your sales and marketing activities. You’ll need to consider the types of features the software provides, its price, usability, and even the kind of training and support provided by its developer. Some sales funnel programs work as a stand-alone software and may require a separate CRM system while others are all-in-one systems with CRM included.
When you are evaluating different types of sales funnel softwares, the first step would be to evaluate your business size and what suits your company best. For instance, the best sales funnel software with all the bells and whistles could be ideal for a Fortune 500 company but not for a small business. In the same way, a B2C business will require a different set of features and functions in a sales funnel from the ones that a B2B business requires. It all boils down to what works best for your type and size of business.
Marketing automation is still a relatively new concept in the business world today. This is why new platforms and solutions are popping up almost every day. So how do you determine which sales funnel software is the right one for your business?
Here are a few important things to consider:
Is the Software Built For Your Team?
The sales funnel software should work seamlessly with different parts of your organization. It is important to ensure that the marketing tool can easily be adopted, leveraged, and in the long run provide a good ROI for your company. While comparing available options, take the time to evaluate how each tool is designed to help your sales team, operations staff, and the management team in their marketing strategies and performance assessment. A sales funnel tool can provide positive results only when it is designed for the right team. Ensure the tool is the right one for your team or employees before you make a purchasing decision.
Does it Address Your Target Audience?
Does your business target consumers or businesses? Knowing the difference between B2B and B2C will help you evaluate different sales funnel softwares and determine the right one for your business. A B2C company will need an e-commerce component with the ability to track and monitor purchases. A marketing software for A B2B firm will require functions and features that can manage and track deals struck with different companies throughout the sales pipeline. You’ll be able to narrow down your choices when you understand your audience and how you expect to target them.
Which Features Do I Need?
When you are searching for the right sales funnel software, you’ll come across numerous versions with different features and functions. There will be those must-have features, the good-to-have although not necessary features, and of course those other features that you’ll never use. Getting the right set of features is important in terms of ease of use and price of course. It makes no sense to pay a huge cost for a product with numerous features that you’ll probably never touch. Any software bloated with features that you don’t need will be difficult to use.
Mobile Functionality Matters A Lot!
The world has gone mobile which is one reason why the sales funnel software you intend to invest in should provide significant mobile functionalities. In today’s business environment, a digital marketing tool that cannot function on mobile devices is really not worth buying. Mobile functionality provides many benefits. For instance, staff at different levels within the organization can easily information from a mobile-ready tool from anywhere at any time. Cloud-based tools that can be accessed via mobile devices enable your staff to perform many tasks on the go. They can easily update deals, run reports, analyze data, set up new tasks, and import contacts straight from their mobile devices. Mobile functionality is a must-have feature in any sales funnel software.
Ease Of Use
Ease of use is another key factor to consider in any sales and marketing software that you intend to purchase. Ask yourself if you or your sales team will be able to navigate the software easily while using it. User adoption is very important. The worst mistake you can make is to invest in a sales automation system with the goal of streamlining your business operations and boost productivity only to have your employees avoiding the new system because it is too complicated to use.
Does the Software Come With Training?
A good sales funnel software should provide some level of training for you and your employees. It can be easy to use but adopting it to your company’s unique needs may get complicated. Consider the amount of training you’ll need to use the software effectively and if the vendor does indeed provide the required training. While many vendors offer free training to some level, others require that you buy a training package separately. The best sales funnel software should come with free training to get you started right away. In most cases, you can get a good start with standard training provided by the vendor but in case you need help in implementing the software to your marketing strategy, you can always hire a consultant who is well versed with marketing software strategies.
Does the Tool Give You An Edge Over Your Competition?
It is also important to consider what advantages the sales funnel software gives you over your competitors. The right software will provide your sales team with all the important information about your customers, track the sales pipeline, and help you win more deals and retain existing customers. The sales funnel software will help you generate more leads from your site and landing pages and assess your company’s performance within a given timeframe. With the best features and functions, the tool should give you an edge over your competitors. Otherwise, it would not be worth investing in.
Level of Support Provided
Once you have implemented the sales funnel software into your company’s marketing strategies, you may occasionally run into small issues that can interfere with your day to day operations. In such cases, the assistance of software’s support team is invaluable. It is, therefore, important to understand the level of support provided by the software vendor before you make a purchasing decision. What kind of support do you prefer? Do you want telephone, Live Chat, or email correspondence? More importantly, check if the software vendor’s support desk can be accessed 24/7 or if they can only be reached during working hours. Keep in mind business hours may vary depending on your geographic location.
The Question of Pricing
The goal of any sales and marketing software is to help your business generate and convert more leads at a lower cost. It is one of the best investments you can make for your company. However, unplanned expenses such as the cost of hiring a developer to custom integrate the software to your business or even high startup fees can really add up to your budget.
On the other hand, low-cost software that comes with limited functions and features or even poor support will not help you to realize maximum benefits of the investment. It can be quite frustrating to discover that the software does not provide the expected results due to lack of some key features.
While it doesn’t make sense to invest heavily in a sales funnel platform with features you’ll never use, buying cheaper priced software with limited functionality could be worse. So when it comes to the question of pricing, you’ll need to compare the price with other requirements such as features, ease of use, and support provided to determine if the software is really worth the cost.
Starting an internet-based business is not as difficult as many people think, especially when you have the right tools at your disposal. You can easily start by creating a landing page then advertise your products while collecting potential customers’ contacts in the process. Later, you can create a full store displaying your products and services and even add a marketing app to your workflow that will help you to follow up prospects and entice them to visit your new store.
If that looks like too much work, you can take the easier and more efficient route by investing in ClickFunnels. Rather than use multiple, often confusing, apps to list your inventory online, market to prospects, close deals, measure your store’s performance and do all the essential tasks of online marketing, you can create a single site and do everything from one platform. That is how powerful ClickFunnels is. It is a tool that allows you to handle all your marketing tasks from a single platform.
So What Exactly is ClickFunnels?
This is a service developed over 3 years ago by Russel Brunson and a team of developers. Unlike other similar tools and products that can only create standalone pages, ClickFunnels allows you to create, manage, and track different types of marketing funnels.
It may be important to first describe marketing funnel at this point. The funnel is actually a series of different pages that visitors go through in the purchasing journey. The funnel involves all the steps a potential customer goes through in the marketing process.
For instance, you can have a simple lead capture funnel made of two pages. The first page collects the prospect’s email address in exchange for a gift or valuable product while the second one is a Thank You page where the visitor gets the promised gift.
Alternatively, you can have a better, and more sophisticated, sales funnel consisting of multiple pages which sell to the visitor in a series of steps. This is what ClickFunnels does. Using ClickFunnels, you can create the following types of sales funnels:
- A lead capture or optin funnels
Optin or lead capture funnels allow you to capture email addresses of your visitors specifically to grow your mailing list so that you can later market your products and services to these potential customers via email.
- Sales page Funnels
This type of sales funnel allows you to sell more products and services by adding upsells and downsales in the sales processes. The goal of a sales funnel is to maximize sales from each potential customer who has shown an interest in purchasing your products or services.
- Webinar Funnels
Webinar funnels are used to help visitors register for webinars. You can then later sell to your webinar attendees during or after the webinar.
- Membership websites
Did you know that you can generate recurring income simply by using ClickFunnels to create a complete membership site and charging for membership or selling products to members? Membership sites provide a reliable stream of monthly income.
ClickFunnels has distinctive sets of templates designed for each of these types of funnels. It is a tool that takes away the complexities of designing and managing different types of sales funnels. Everything you need to build a customized funnel is considered in ClickFunnels, whether you are creating a simple landing page or a complex ecommerce site.
ClickFunnels Overall Rating: 5 out of 5
Getting Started with ClickFunnels
ClickFunnels is quite easy to use. You can start from scratch simply by adding a name to your funnel, choosing one of their pre-made templates, and start collecting emails or selling your products and services.
You’ll begin by adding a site template when creating your funnel. Every funnel starts with this step but you can include other steps as you take your visitors through the marketing process. Basically, the software allows you to create a normal landing page starting with a basic template that includes a description of your product and a promotion video. You’ll also include an opt-in form to collect your visitors’ emails.
The next step in a simple funnel is to create a Thank You page where you thank the visitor who has signed up to your offer, provide what you had promised in the capture page, and share more information with the visitor. The thank you page is a great place to market your main products.
Every step in the funnel uses similar template tools. You have a wide choice of built-in templates that you can use or, if you are up to it, build your own template using ClickFunnels tools. The platform provides an easy to use drag-and-drop editor that allows you to move different parts of the site around to customize the page design and create a unique sales funnel. It is however important to have a similar design in every step of each funnel to avoid confusing customers as they navigate through your funnel.
If you are selling products, ClickFunnels gives you a wide range of payment processing services that you can easily integrate into your funnel. You can add your payment processing account and start accepting payments for products, services, or memberships. You can even tweak the settings of your page to use any domain and favicon you prefer. It is highly recommended that you include a header code in each page for your analytics.
Another great thing about ClickFunnels is the ability to send messages to people who sign up directly from the software or via email integration with your favorite auto-responder service.
ClickFunnels Ease of Use Rating: 5 out of 5
ClickFunnels Features and Functions
ClickFunnels is designed to help you create efficient pages in each step of your marketing funnel. It is not just about creating a single page but building a structured set of pages leading users towards the final action you want them to take. To achieve this goal, ClickFunnels has a useful suite of features and functions including the following:
- A wide range of templates designed to help you achieve specific goals such selling products or simply collecting emails.
- A template for each specific page in your sales funnel
- An auto-responder for your email marketing needs
- Email list segmentation for different marketing services.
- All your pages are hosted on ClickFunnels eliminating the need to purchase separate hosting
- It gives you the ability to use your custom domain which can be quite helpful in branding
- Unlike other similar platforms, ClickFunnels provides webinar funnels too. Webinars have become quite popular in recent times.
- It allows you to provide visitors with ability to download digital products such as eBooks and software after they subscribe to your mailing list.
- Comes with a detailed page creator that you can use to set up front end and back end sales funnels.
- ClickFunnels provides detailed analytics for each step in your sales funnel
- It is a marketing automation tool that helps you to move visitors through multiple steps in your sales funnel
- You can run A/B testing to determine which pages, buttons, or other aspects provide the best performance.
- Comes with a ClickFunnels WordPress plugin that allows you to easily integrate the software with your WordPress site.
These are just some of the key features of ClickFunnels but there is so much you can do with these features. You wonder how one piece of software can do so much.
Besides helping you create different types of web pages, this tool also helps you track each page to determine how the entire funnel performs. You get real-time statistics at the top of each page you have created in terms of the number of visitors received as well as clicks and revenue generated by the traffic. There is even a graph showing you’re the funnel’s statistics in a specified timeframe.
The Actionetics feature in ClickFunnels is designed to replace your email marketing service provider. It allows you to see which visitors opted in to your lists. Each lead is allocated an Action score based on frequency, recency, monetary value, and a social score. The score gives you an idea about the lead’s potential to make a purchase.
You can even send email broadcasts using the Actionetics. It is basically an email auto-responder with an email builder that allows you to create unique and nice looking emails.
ClickFunnels Features and Reporting Rating: 5 out of 5
ClickFunnels pricing plans have evolved over time as more features and functionalities are added. The sales funnel software began with three pricing tiers that have now been consolidated into two.
The lower priced plan costs $97 per month. This plan gives you access to all the tools but limits you to create 20 funnels, 100 pages, and manage a maximum of 20,000 visitors. The plan does not include access to Actionetics and Backpack features.
To access everything the service provides, you’ll need to sign up to the Etison Suite plan which costs $297 per month. This plan allows you to create unlimited funnels, pages, and even manage an unlimited number of visitors.
Each of the two plans comes with a 14 day trial that you can use to test the service before you decide to buy.
ClickFunnels Pricing Rating: 4 out of 5
ClickFunnels Pros and Cons
- It is very easy to build funnel workflows with ClickFunnels
- It has a flexible easy to use editor
- Integration with major email service
- Integration with major payment processors
- Beautiful templates for different types of funnels
- Training materials available including weekly webinars
- 14 day free trial to test things out
- Compared to similar service, ClickFunnels is quite expensive, especially the Etison plan (ClickFunnels Makes Up For It With Ease of Use and Training)
Final Thoughts on ClickFunnels
Despite ClickFunnels’ comparatively higher pricing plans, it has some of the best features you would need in a marketing automation tool. It is one of the best sales funnel software suites for anyone who wants to maximize his or marketing efficiency. It will save you time too.
Creating an online business may seem complicated but with ClickFunnels you can build a strong online presence and make it do everything you need to run your business from a single application. ClickFunnels allows you to build landing pages, close sales, email prospects, and monitor your pages’ performance from one platform.
I personally use Clickfunnels and it has changed my life…
Russell is a great person as well as an amazing business man. I have learned more than just business from listening and watching his training. That is the ultimate value he could ever bring. Education and passing on a legacy through people like me.
I highly recommend anything Russell has as he strives and always achieves having the most amazing customer experiences!