That really depends on what you want to accomplish. If you want a basic site, you could upload a theme, or use your hosting company’s theme builder and get online but that doesn’t mean you’ll get what you want necessarily. WordPress itself is a basic, open-sourced software tool that really does nothing. It will take a bit of know-how and expertise to learn how to use, but if you are above-average tech savvy (or learn things quickly), you can figure out how to get online.
In marketing automation, Ryan Deiss, co-founder of Digital Marketer, often describes the sales funnel as a multi-step, multi-modality process that moves prospective browsers into buyers. It's multi-stepped because lots must occur between the time that a prospect is aware enough to enter your funnel, to the time when they take action and successfully complete a purchase. 

You can expect this post to be updated quite regularly as I am really excited to see where this goes. Like I mentioned earlier, I’ll endeavour to keep this post updated as much as possible as new features and changes come up for both companies. I think the internet marketing space will be changing a fair bit in the coming 12-24 months as more people start new online platforms like these to compete for a slice of the pie. *(Also a note, that I am using affiliate links within this post, so if you do want to go purchase either of these two powerhouses, clicking a link will pass me off a little commission!)*
Great article Matt! I have a product-based business (skincare to be precise) and I’ve been doing a lot of research on sales funnels over the past few days but only ever come across examples for service-based businesses and struggle to apply those to my business. I do offer a free skincare guide at opt in but can’t think of anything else for the follow up emails to create trust as well as a limited time offer. Would you have any suggestions?
I am currently using LeadPages and was thinking of moving to Clickfunnels after my 14 day trial (depending on how it goes). It gets a bit annoying doing the integrations sometimes, especially that you have to always remember to connect the flow for things to work. That’s why so far I really appreciate the all-in-one feature that ClickFunnels have. I am also planning to sell my own products in the nearest future and really appreciate you letting us know about how to save $$$ by using ‘Funnel Hacks’
Whimsical isn't usually the first word that comes to mind when you think of HR software, but Teambit's illustration-heavy landing page is exactly that. A simple, one-field form is accompanied by a delightful office full of animal characters -- all of whom are very pleased with Teambit, in case you were wondering. An animal cartoon appears beside each informational section of the landing page, keeping visitors scrolling down to learn more.
Funnel Hacks System is a training program bundled with a 6-month access to a full ClickFunnels suite. This includes the ClickFunnels platform, Actionetics and Backpack. What sets it apart from other offers is that Funnel Hacks comes not only with the full ClickFunnels suite, but also with training and guides to make the most out of your ClickFunnels experience.
The idea of using a funnel as a metaphor for Sales & Marketing processes in business really stems from the classic Marketing concept, AIDA. Attention, Interest, Desire, Action. These 4 elements generally describe how you build customer relationships, but they can also describe lots of other things too (like how to structure a really good sales letter or sales pitch).
 Now, as a marketing consultant who works with hundreds of active small business owners, I’ve built my entire business using the Clickfunnels platform. It’s worked so well, and my passion for helping business owners make more money faster, I’ve started an exclusive Sales Funnel Mastermind for twelve, motivated entrepreneurs per year. You can learn more about my “inner circle” at this page (BTW, I built it in Clickfunnels).

If you’re using an email service like Mailchimp, then you might be stumped on how to send content upgrades without adding subscribers to a gazillion lists and thereby paying for your subscribers multiple times. LeadPages makes this a very simple fix. To do so, you just need to create a new “LeadPage” or “LeadBox” in LeadPages and then upload your freebie, which will automatically be emailed to your new subscriber after they opt-in. It’s an excellent solution if you want to grow your list with content upgrades, but don’t know how to figure it out tech-wise.
Chris is right, it is not the cost, it is the investment you are willing to make into your business here. Personally, I took the attitude of it being too costly at first, and trust me, I can afford it, I am just frugal. But now, looking at the powerful software and tool that it is, well, I am switching from Thrive to ClickFunnels. Personally speaking, my issue at first was based on my poor attitude of spending money, instead of a better and smarter attitude of investing into my business online…
Just found your post in my study of sales funnels. You bring the heart to it. This is really the missing link to online success. Thank you for explaining it so easily. Am not compelled to download the free traffic course because I can imagine the quality of info it would have not to mention returning to the site to have my buffer on other interesting content. Thanks.
By now, your customers trust you (as they should!). They’ve received all the benefits from the top of the funnel (the freebie they registered for on your website), and the middle of the funnel (be it emails with great content from you or otherwise), and they have some sense of who you are as a person. This is where you ask for the sale (hello, bottom of your funnel!). You want to continue to engage, of course, but you also want to offer something of even more value to your customers.
Total-experience testing, or experience testing, is a type of experiment-based testing in which the entire website experience of the visitor is examined using technical capabilities of the website platform (e.g., ATG, Blue Martini Software, etc.). Rather than creating multiple websites, total-experience testing uses the website platform to create several persistent experiences, and monitors which one is preferred by the customers.[citation needed]
Significant improvements can be seen through testing different copy text, form layouts, landing page images and background colours. However, not all elements produce the same improvements in conversions, and by looking at the results from different tests, it is possible to identify the elements that consistently tend to produce the greatest increase in conversions.[citation needed]
Cons: The membership area functionality isn't as great as other solutions, but I understand they are focused on being the best funnel software, not the best membership site software. If they upgrade their membership area and email / list marketing features, I would move everything onto clickfunnels. That would be dream, rather than integrating clickfunnels with an email tool and membership tool. I know they're working on improving these solutions and I'm looking forward to this software becoming that much more amazing.
The image above is a glimpse at one of my webinars that I created in LeadPages. I embedded my live webinar presentation into a webinar template in LeadPages and also added a chat box (not pictured) below the webinar so that attendees could communicate and ask questions. Webinar software can be very pricy, but this solution allows you to do them nearly for free by embedding a live Google Hangouts broadcast. LeadPages is a great option for anyone getting started with webinars.
Closed-ended experimentation. Consumers are exposed to several variations of landing pages, altering elements like headlines, formatting and layout while their behavior is observed in an attempt to remove distractions that will take the lead away from the page, including the primary navigation.[9] At the conclusion of the experiment, an optimal page is selected based on the outcome of the experiment.
“The danger here is, that navigation links present the visitor with the opportunity to exit the landing page without them converting. Studies from ConversionXL suggest that removing navigation links from the middle of the funnel landing pages seeing 16% and 28% lift in conversions, while top of the funnel landing pages are seeing an insignificant 0-4% increase in conversion rates.
On MailChimp’s pricing page, the focus is on getting you signed up for free, with an email, username, and password. They want to get you up and running and start using the product as soon as possible. They hope you will help them market themselves by using their products and spreading MailChimp further. Email marketing is often a one-too-many communication platform. The more you use it, the more likely you are to upgrade.
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Clickfunnels: Review, Demo, Pricing and Features: