So, you started generating traffic to your website. You look at your stats and the visitors just keep coming in. But something is frustrating the hell out of you – no sales! It’s one thing to generate traffic to your website, but it’s another to turn that traffic into sales.
In this article we’ll go over some basic ways you can use funnels and landing pages to boost your conversions through the roof. The four main products we will discuss are:
- Thrive Themes
I am sure you’ve all heard of landing pages. They’re pages typically designed to do one of two things: Make a sale, or get people to sign up to your email list so that you can sell them later. We personally believe it’s better to offer something free to get visitors to sign up for your email list.
This way you can build a trust between you and your customer before trying to sell. Although this can depend on what type of business you’re in.
Landing pages are pages that are specifically designed for conversions. Oftentimes, your landing pages won’t even let people access other pages (no menu bar). The sole goal is to have people stick to this page and take your desired actions. Landing pages convert a ton better than just sending leads directly to a homepage or a random inner page of your website.
These pages will have catchy headlines and persuading copy to get people to convert.
Landing pages educate the reader on your product or service and take action. This action can be filling out an estimate request form, or the action could be making a purchase. All landing pages have a desired action that you want the user to take.
Now you may be asking, what the heck is a funnel? A funnel is pretty much the system you bring people through while going through a sale. There are a couple of different ways to run a funnel. Here are two models we like.
Model 1: With this funnel, you offer the user something free in return for their email address. This could be an E-Book or a free trial. Once they enter their email, you bring them to another page that says something along the lines of “Thanks for entering your email. The e-book should be delivered to your mailbox shortly. I wanted to let you in on a limited time offer that expires in 24 hours. It is half off my Booming Business System!”
So they enter their email, get something for free and then you offer them a one time offer. If they are not interested in the one time offer, no big deal. You have their email, and you can nurture the lead with emails in the next couple weeks with the goal of turning them into buyers.
Model 2: This is a unique one that Russell Brunson has popularized. You advertise a free webinar. People join the webinar and at the end of the Webinar, you give them a one time offer.
Or you could even combine those two models.
Enter Email For Free Product – Emailed Webinar – Webinar shown with a One Time Offer
There are a lot of different ways to go about it.
Setting up landing pages and funnels can be pretty time consuming and expensive. Luckily for us, there are products and software developed to do just this. They all have pros and cons which we’ll go over individually.
ClickFunnels: The Behemoth in the Room
ClickFunnels is an obsession for my team, and it’s a mature service that has been developed extensively over the past three years. When you start using ClickFunnels, you’ll start building a series of pages that funnel your visitor to take a certain action.
ClickFunnels provides templates for everything, so you can start to create funnels for, well, everything. You can create:
- Optin/Lead Captures: Funnels that are designed to help you build your email list. These optin pages will be used to gather email addresses with the visitor’s permission.
- Webinar: People need an easy way to sign up for your webinar. ClickFunnels provides a template, or many, which allow you to create a funnel for your webinar in seconds.
- Sales Pages: Sell products or services through your funnel, too. These templates convert very well, and it’s easy to provide upsells or downsells to increase your sales volume.
If you’ve ever wanted to build a membership site, ClickFunnels can help, too. Membership sites allow you to have a recurring income – it doesn’t get any better than that.
And there are templates for all of the different funnel types that the company offers.
But wait. You have something special in mind. Well, don’t let that stop you. ClickFunnels shines even more when you want to create something for yourself. The built-in editor allows you to start clicking away and making a funnel that every market would be proud to run.
There’s not a single line of coding needed.
It’s the editor meant for the complete newbie. Set up your own series of pages, view changes in real-time and get people converting.
Flexibility is what ClickFunnels has to offer. You have control when creating every page. Want to move elements around? Do it. You can place them wherever you want. This is where ClickFunnels beats a lot of the other options we’ll review.
And it’s super easy to get started.
Learn from the Pros
I’m the stubborn type. I never read instructions or manuals. I’m kind of confident in some areas, but in other areas, I’m horrible. ClickFunnels knows that a lot of marketers and website owners aren’t savvy with funnel or landing pages.
The company provides you with training videos to help you start using the platform.
If you give yourself a few minutes this afternoon, you’ll learn how to quickly start setting up your own funnel pages. The platform makes it easy to get started, too:
- Add Funnels brings you right to a screen with all of the funnel types you can pick from.
- Create Funnel allows you to name your funnel and then generates the set of pages for you.
Videos are available for all parts of the funnel creation process, so you always know what you’re doing.
If you decide you really don’t want that third page in your funnel, click the “X” and remove it. Every page can have its own template, and you can also add your own custom templates, too. Funnels can have sections, column rows and elements.
Sections can have a single column or up to six columns.
The possibilities are limitless with ClickFunnels.
Advanced elements and basic widgets are available, too. The Basic widgets, include:
And while the basics are always nice, the advanced elements really make your pages convert well.
The advanced elements can include:
- Signup through SMS
- Facebook comments
- Pricing table
- FAQ blocks
- Video unlocker
You can also add in your own custom HTML into an advanced element. This is a powerful tool. But you have even more control. Click on any of the elements in the contextual editor, and you’ll be able to edit everything in your element from font size to margins and even alignment and colors.
Payment processors can also be added into the mix. The company supports integration for a variety of payment processors, including Stripe, ClickBank, InfusionSoft and others.
If you want to make sales, you need to be able to track your results. ClickFunnels to the rescue. I’m serious: They have thought of everything. Every page in your funnel is tracked so that you can see how they perform.
Say your second page loses a lot of users, well you can setup a split test to optimize the page.
There are buttons that make creating a split test a breeze. If you’re new to all of this, split testing allows you to test different versions of the same page to see which version converts well.
Statistics are provided for every page so that you can track:
- Conversion rate
- Next visitors
If you have done split tests on the platform before, you can easily clone these tests and use them on your new page. There are tabs available on the analytics pages that let you see how well each test performs.
Don’t get me wrong, ClickFunnels doesn’t have the world’s most advanced split testing platform, but they do offer a great option for split testing.
Actionetics and Backpack
Actionetics and Backpack are two additional products from ClickFunnels, and they have helped the platform build on their success with funnels. Actionetics allows you to “replace” your email service provider.
But, “replace” isn’t the right word really.
The product can’t replace some of the more powerful email service providers, but it does help and will save you money. The product allows you to view people that have opted into your email list and send out email broadcasts.
Action scores are given to each lead, allowing you to base the lead on social scores, monetary value, frequency and recency. What’s this all mean? It means you’ll be able to see which leads are most inclined to buy from you.
Action Funnels can be used to make autoresponders, too.
Backpack is an easy method you can use to make your own affiliate program.
- Easy-to-use editor
- Integrates quickly with email providers
- Integrates quickly with payment processors
- Tons of templates provided
- Training materials are top-notch
- New features are added often
- Split testing is basic
- Takes time to master the platform
ClickFunnels is great, and while expensive, there are multiple pricing tiers so that you can choose a tier that best fits your needs.
Thrive Themes: Supercharging WordPress
Thrive Themes isn’t playing games. The company decided that WordPress just doesn’t convert well, so they went on a mission to make themes and plugins that are geared to do one thing – convert.
Every aspect of your website can be converted to a highly optimized work of art.
You’ll be able to convert your visitors into:
You have the power in your hands. But Thrive Themes is different than ClickFunnels. While ClickFunnels focuses on your funnel, Thrive does a lot of different things.You can pick and choose what you want to use from the company’s offerings, and everything is included with your membership.
It’s really cool, but it can be complex to get a hang of everything the company is offering.
We’ll provide a short overview of each product so that you can get a better understanding of what Thrive is all about.
- Thrive Themes. Built for speed, these themes compress images, include smart conversion elements, include easy page generators, include landing page templates, offer fully responsive designs, and include many of the plugins you would otherwise need to install separately.
- Thrive Leads. The perfect, all-in-one email list tool. When you use Thrive Leads, you’ll be able to create and design opt-in forms for every occasion. You can also run A/B tests and see a view of your most important metrics. You can also choose a plethora of opt-in options from screen overlays to content locks, scroll mats and dozens more.
- Thrive Architect. A visual editor that is a plugin for your WordPress site. The editor makes it easy to drag-and-drop layouts, add advanced elements to your site and create content that converts.
- Clever Widgets. Widgets that actually bring power to your pages. These widgets can change the content in your widget areas, depending on post, page, categories and advanced targeting rules.
- Headline Optimizer. Make testing out your headlines simple. The optimizer allows for A/B testing of your headlines so that you can keep the best performing headlines and discard the rest.
- Thrive Ultimatum. The Ultimatum tool allows you to push potential buyers to make a purchase. This tool includes scarcity campaigns and countdown timers geared towards pushing a sale.
- Thrive Ovation. A plugin that is meant to help take the hard work out of getting testimonials. The tool runs on autopilot, helping you get testimonials that you can then put on your landing pages to boost conversions even further.
- Thrive Quiz Builder. The quiz builder allows you to gain visitor insight through the use of highly customizable quizzes. Make quizzes, gain feedback and really dig deep into the needs of your visitors with the quiz builder.
Landing pages are created in Architect, so I’m going to dig a little deeper into the Architect to see how it competes to ClickFunnels.
When you first open up Architect, you’ll notice that it’s quick editor which allows for drag-and-drop functionality. You’ll be able to create pages without any coding on your end – non-coders rejoice.
- 80 templates
- Sales pages
- Opt-in pages
- Webinar pages
And there are other pages available within the templates. The key thing to remember is that all templates are customizable, so you can make them your very own.
Conversion elements are built into the Architect, including:
- Countdown timers
You can also integrate email marketing tools into the mix. Ultimate flexibility is offered. You can make column layouts with ease. Resize your layout’s columns, drag-and-drop elements and remove elements in seconds.
Images and text can be added quickly to grab the attention of the reader.
Total font customization with over 700 fonts allows you to have the typography needed for clean, professional landing pages. Hover effects are even included with Architect.
Thrive Themes Pros
- Includes a lot of extras
- Pre-built conversion elements
- 80 landing page templates
- Designed for speed
- Drag and drop editing
Thrive Themes Cons
- High learning curve
The only issue I have with Thrive Themes is that there are a lot of elements. You’ll need to spend a lot of time trying each plugin and theme. Oftentimes, it seems that the plugins should be in one plugin rather than so many separate options.
But once you learn the basics, you’ll be up and running with a highly optimized WordPress site.
OptimizePress: 2.0 is a Game Changer
OptimizePress has changed the way people optimize their websites. When you choose OptimizePress, you’re able to build premiere websites that convert. It takes minutes to make websites, and the company has only advanced their product throughout the years.
And, you’ll be able to:
- Create sales pages
- Create highly converting landing pages
- Create, optimize and maintain funnels
- Create membership portals
- Build authority websites
OptimizePress runs on WordPress, so you’re able to transform your current site into a highly converting website.OptimizePress’ second iteration of their product is a game changer, and it helps you create websites that attract conversions.
You’ll find that there are two different types of Optimizepress bundled together:
Features to Supercharge Your Website
You’re going to make your life as a business or website owner a lot easier when you start using this theme and plugin. The main features, and there are many which I’ll cover, include:
- Mobile ready pages
- Webinar registration
- Sales and marketing pages
- Product launch funnels
- Membership portals
- Landing pages
- Training and course pages
And everything is tied together with a LiveEditor System. What’s this? Power.
The LiveEditor System allows for 100% editing of your pages in real-time. You’ll be able to see what your pages look like without refreshing or having to preview the page. Fully responsive, all of your pages generated with OptimizePress are mobile ready and will work across all screen sizes.
If you’re not sure where to start, you can choose a premade template (there are over 30). You’ll have an instant head start creating your page with any one of these templates. Each and every template has been tested to convert.
Add elements, edit anything on the page and make the template your own.
Don’t forget, you can make pages from scratch, too. This allows you to make your home pages, opt-in pages, sales pages or any page you want to create.
Every category has their own themes available, so you’ll be able to create a funnel that looks like it was made on a huge budget for a fraction of the price. LiveEditor also allows you to change:
- Color scheme
I’ve talked a bit about page elements, and these are powerful elements that can be added to your site to increase conversions. There are over 40 page elements, and they include:
- Content toggles
- Facebook Comments
And tons more. Did I mention that the platform also integrates with many of your favorite services? You’ll be able to integrate with:
- Aweber, MailChimp,GetResponse, etc.
- iMember360, DigitalAccessPass, WishlistMembers, etc.
- Optimizely, Google Analytics, Kissmetrics, etc.
- PayPal, ClickBank, Authorize.net and Infusionsoft
Everything is at your fingertips.
OptimizePress’ membership sites deserve praise, and this is where this template / plugin package really shines. Membership sites can be created with highly optimized features.
Membership sites provide functionality to:
- Drip feed content
- Use your existing membership plugin
- Protect certain pages
- Integrate your site with customer lists
It’s super simple to create a membership site with OptimizePress 2.0.
- A/B testing is available with Experiments
- Membership sites are feature-rich
- Editor allows for live previewing
- 30+ professional templates
- Marketplace to buy or sell your funnels / templates
- Some features are difficult to find and use
- LiveEditor system can be clunky at times
I would recommend OptimizePress more if it wasn’t hard to find some of the product’s features. Oftentimes, the features seemed to be buried and often go overlooked. The LiveEditor can also be clunky, but it is a nice addition to any WordPress site once you get over the initial hiccups.
OptimizePress makes it easy to boost your conversion rates, make money and create sales funnels like a pro. Technology never gets in your way when using OptimizePress. You can create highly optimized pages today with the click of a button – no coding experience needed.
LeadPages: Templates and Feature Overload
LeadPages is carving out their own path in page optimization. The platform offers a free trial – a major perk – and, you’ll be able to grow your customer base significantly. You’ll be able to do a lot with LeadPages, including:
- Choose from 130+ mobile-friendly templates
- Integrate your site with built-in payments
- Conduct A/B testing and generate analytic reports
- Drag-and-drop elements on your page
- Integrate your site with the top sales and marketing software
- Collect leads with lead capture pop-ups
- Create one-click signup links
- Generate SMS opt-in codes
And this is just the start of what LeadPages has to offer. You’ll be able to create highly converting pages quickly and easily with the help of LeadPages. Since all of the 130+ templates are responsive, your site will look great on all devices.
Use your PC, and your site looks awesome. Use your smartphone, your site looks awesome. Use your tablet, and guess what? Your site still looks awesome.
Create Landing Pages
You’re using any of these services because you don’t want to create landing pages from scratch. LeadPages has two landing page editors:
- Original. The original editor is a bit dated, but it allows you to point and click to make edits on your page. You’ll be able to make all of the basic edits you want, such as changing fonts, colors and images in seconds.
- New Editor. The new editor is the future, and this is a drag and drop editor that allows you to take full control of your website. Rearrange, add or delete elements on the page within seconds.
Widgets and countdown timers are also included. You’ll even find a checkout element that lets you sell products right on your landing pages.
Speaking of landing pages, the templates included with LeadPages are updated monthly, and you’ll find templates for:
- Launch pages
- Checkout pages
- 404 pages
- Thank you pages
- Podcast pages
You’ll even find that some of the best marketers in the world have chosen to use LeadPages. Pat Flynn, if you’re a marketer you should know his name, has even chosen to use LeadPages for a lot of his product launches.
LeadBoxes Deserves Praise
I like LeadBoxes so much that I think they deserve their own praise. When you create any highly converting website, you want to create pop-up and opt-ins that allow you to capture email information.
LeadBoxes allows you to create these opt-in forms and pop-ups in minutes.
You’ll have complete control over how these boxes work, such as:
- Pop-ups that only show after a certain amount of pages have been viewed
- Pop-ups that display if you’ve been on a page for a certain amount of time
There are also two-step opt-ins, which are the most popular. When you make the visitor click twice to add themselves to your list, you’ll find that they’re more committed. These individuals really want to be a part of your mailing list, so you’ll be able to make sales much easier.
There is also an editor for your LeadBoxes, so you can control the entire design of your boxes, use videos, add timers and even add content upgrades into the mix.
If you want to tweak your page to try and achieve higher conversions, A/B testing is the key to success. Pro subscribers have access to the platform’s A/B testing, and this allows you to create alternate pages of the same page.
Basically, different versions of the page will be displayed to different people.
And when this happens, you’ll also have full analytics to see which page converts better. Sometimes, a minor change in the page layout or design is enough to boost conversions through the roof.
The company’s A/B testing is continuing to be updated, but it’s on par with other basic A/B testing options.
Leaddigits is a really awesome feature, and it’s quite original. What this feature does is allows you to capture a person’s e-mail address through SMS. Subscribers can text a five digit number, and then they’ll get a response requesting their e-mail address.
The person’s number can also be captured.
When would you use this?
A lot. Here are a few times when a business would use this feature:
- Networking events
- Nail salons
And the list goes on.
- Leaddigits is a great option for service-based businesses
- Editor makes it easy to create landing pages
- Analytics allow you to easily,track website performance
- Standard edition lacks A/B testing
- Styling customization is limited
LeadPages is a very strong product, but they do lack some of the advanced customization options that would make this a winner in our eyes. You’ll also need to have a higher subscription to unlock A/B testing.
But, despite these complaints, you’ll find that LeadPages is highly touted by some of the world’s best markets. The platform will help boost your conversion rates, and at the end of the day, that’s what all of these products are about: making more money.
Our Winner Is..
ClickFunnels. When you choose ClickFunnels, you’re choosing the best in the business. The entire package makes it easy and intuitive to optimize your site for high conversion rates.
And you won’t have to pay someone thousands of dollars to tweak your pages for you – you can do it in minutes.
Don’t get me wrong, each of these services has their own strong points, but when it comes to the complete package, it’s hard to compete with ClickFunnels. From the different funnel options to the ability to run A/B testing, ClickFunnels is our clear winner.