ClickFunnels vs Kartra: Which Sales Funnel Builder Wins?

Are you looking to build a sales funnel?

Then you are going to want to use a software for that.

A sales funnel consists of many different moving parts so it’s important to find a platform that works and is easy to use.

This lets you focus more on your marketing so you can make more sales.

Two of the dominant sales funnel builders in the market today, are ClickFunnels and Kartra. Each has their own loyal supporters.

And I’m a customer of both.

In this article, I’m going to compare these two funnel builders and help you decide which one is right for your business.

Here’s what I’m going to cover.

Overview of ClickFunnels

Overview of ClickFunnels

ClickFunnels seemingly came out of nowhere back in 2014, and since then, its founder, Russell Brunson, has taken the company to over $100 million in annual revenue.

So what exactly does ClickFunnels do?

As its name would suggest, ClickFunnels helps you easily create sales funnels to sell your products and services. You can use it to create and link each stage of your funnel, including landing pages, squeeze pages, webinar signup pages and more.

Of course, all great funnels lead to a checkout page, and ClickFunnels allows you to take payments along with more advanced shopping-cart features to increase sales and average order value. These include upsells, downsells and bump offers.

Finally, the more premium ClickFunnel plans even go as far as providing an affiliate portal (to recruit your own army of affiliates) and an email marketing platform to build email campaigns and autoresponders.

Overview of Kartra

Overview of Kartra

Kartra, founded by Andy Jenkins and Mike Filsaime, emerged as an all-in-one online business and marketing solution back in 2018. Since then, it has arguably become the biggest ClickFunnels competitor on the market.

So what exactly does Kartra do?

Unlike ClickFunnels which focuses largely on building out sales funnels, Kartra aims to provide everything you need to start, maintain and grow an online business — hence the “all-in-one” tagline.

This includes a page builder, email marketing platform, shopping cart, webinar solution, and a number of other tools that, coincidentally, are also needed to build effective sales funnels.

Aside from a seemingly endless list of features, another key selling point to Kartra is interconnectivity; everything is built to seamlessly work together so you never have to deal with integration roadblocks or dodgy workarounds.

Why You Should Pick ClickFunnels over Kartra

It has a superior page builder/editor

Whether you choose to go with ClickFunnels or Kartra, you’ll be able to pick from a plethora of high-quality page builder templates covering everything from squeeze pages, webinar sign up pages, thank you pages and more.

If you’re just looking to plug in a pre-built template, swap out some text and call it a day, you probably won’t be exposed to some of the page builder drawbacks that exist in Kartra.

With that being said, there are some considerable advantages to using the ClickFunnels page builder/editor, so, if you’re the kind of person who likes to build your own pages from scratch or even tinker with pre-built templates, this could be a big deal.

ClickFunnels page builder/editor

ClickFunnels is simply more efficient.

For one, the editor is faster in almost every way. Loading page templates is faster, inserting page elements is faster, and even the process of editing a page element (such as text) is faster.

And, unlike Kartra, if you need to edit a column, row or page element, you can hover over the relevant section and click to make changes. You don’t need to switch between column and element mode to edit the corresponding sections.

ClickFunnels also has color-coding for each of these so you know exactly what type of element it is before you click it, meaning less time correcting clicks and more time making meaningful changes.

That’s not to say that ClickFunnels’ editor doesn’t have its own annoyances.  For example, not being able to use the same URL slugs across different funnels is one big one that pops into mind.

But overall I find ClickFunnels to be the better solution in most situations.

It has way more third-party integrations

Despite being labeled a funnel builder and not an all-in-one solution (like Kartra), there’s actually a lot you can do with ClickFunnels right out of the box.

You can build anything from individual pages to full-fledged websites, manage your own affiliates and commission structures, and even run entire email marketing to campaigns to your email list — just like with Kartra.

Sometimes, however, third-party tools just make more sense for our business. Perhaps you prefer FirstPromoter for managing affiliates, or maybe you want to more powerful automations that ActiveCampaign allows you to build.

That’s where integrations come into play, and ClickFunnels gives you much more freedom when it comes to outside applications.

Third-party integrations on ClickFunnels

These include:

  • Shopping cart integrations
  • Email marketing integrations
  • Webinar integrations
  • E-commerce integrations (Shopify)
  • Fulfillment service integrations
  • And more

Kartra, being an all-in-one, is naturally more focused on keeping everything inside the platform, so you just don’t have as much flexibility.

The difference here can’t be understated. For example, ClickFunnels currently works with all the top email marketing software, whereas Kartra works with ZERO.

That means, if you’re collecting email addresses from your Kartra-built pages, you’ll also be locked into their native email autoresponder platform unless you go through Zapier. (Yep, another expense)

There’s more comprehensive training available

If you’re new to selling online, new to building high-converting funnels or just looking to sharpen your marketing skills, you’re in luck.

There are few better people on the planet to learn from than Russell Brunson, and he’s personally created endless hours of content on ClickFunnels and how to use sales funnels to effectively grow your business.

These trainings include:

  • Funnel U
  • Funnel Builder Secrets
  • Product Secrets
  • Traffic Secrets
  • Funnel Hackathon
  • Funnel Hacking Live (Documentary)
  • One Funnel Away Challenge

But it gets even better.

At the end of 2019, Russell decided to throw all that training (along with a bunch of extras) into a new product he calls Funnel Flix — “the Netflix” of online marketing and sales funnel training.

Sales funnel training on ClickFunnels

At the time of writing, they have around 20+ training videos with more in the works, including live training, daily hackathons, and appearances from big names like Tony Robbins and, of course, the man himself; Russell Brunson.

It’s free, but you have to be a member of ClickFunnels to even get access to it and only ClickFunnels Platinum members get all the training inside FunnelFlix.

Finally, the community training around ClickFunnels is insane. I don’t think I’ve ever seen so much voluntary training around a single software product. (Ok… the affiliate program might have a lot to do with that.)

This includes:

  • Podcasts
  • Written guides
  • YouTube videos
  • Udemy courses
  • Even an audiobook

As for Kartra?

It’s fair to say it has a respectable training portal (Katraverse) with tons of free training on how to use the product, but it’s nowhere near the same level of training that surrounds Russell and the ClickFunnels brand.

It has a bigger and more engaged community

It won’t take you long to figure out that ClickFunnels has a significantly larger fan-base compared to Kartra.

Let’s take Facebook, for example.

We’re talking about multiple ClickFunnels-focused groups with thousands of members…

More engaged community on ClickFunnels

…versus a couple of Kartra-focused groups with a fraction of the member count.

 Kartra-focused groups

As I touched on a moment ago, this disparity absolutely trickles down into community-driven content such as blogs, videos, and podcasts, but that’s not all you have to consider.

A community is more than just learning how to use a product; it’s the coming together of like-minded people to achieve a common goal.

It’s a source of inspiration when you feel burned out and ready to give up.

It’s a source of experience when you don’t know which direction to take your business.

And it’s a source of knowledge when you need help finding a price point for a new product launch.

Plus the results that the community has been getting with ClickFunnels speak for themselves. There are over one hundred Dream Car winners (affiliates with over 100 active referrals) and hundreds more 2 Comma Club Award winners (people who have made 7 figures with a sales funnel).

It’s easy to overlook the community aspect when it comes to software products like ClickFunnels and Kartra, but you really can’t put a price on the benefits that come from having a strong community behind you.

And ClickFunnels has the bigger, more passionate fan base hands down.

There are so many opportunities to make affiliate sales

Becoming a successful affiliate marketer isn’t just about driving traffic to products and offers, it’s about driving traffic to the right products and offers.

As a ClickFunnels affiliate, not only do you get access to a generous affiliate program (up to 40% on all sales and recurring payments), you also have the ability to leverage the ClickFunnels product ecosystem.

These products include:

They also do lots of special affiliate competitions like the upcoming Traffic Secrets book launch and things like the Dream Car Contest.

In other words, you don’t need to push a $97/month ClickFunnels membership to someone who isn’t ready for it or simply can’t afford it. Instead, you can strategically build up to that point.

This is what Russell calls “The Value Ladder”:

The value ladder

Why You Should Pick Kartra over ClickFunnels

Email marketing is included with every plan

I already told you that ClickFunnels allows you to integrate with third-party email marketing platforms (autoresponders) like ConvertKit and ActiveCampaign, while Kartra just… doesn’t.

While that’s a pretty glaring blow for Kartra, there are always two sides to every story and I neglected to mention one important detail earlier.

That is unless you’re on the $297/month ClickFunnels plan, you don’t even get access to native email marketing features which means you have no choice but to integrate with a third-party.

Fortunately, the same can’t be said for Kartra.

Even on the cheapest plan at $97/month, you get access to all the email marketing features including pre-designed email templates, tagging, email automations, drip campaigns, and regular broadcasts.

As I said in our Kartra review, it’s not quite as polished as dedicated email marketing tools and it’s far from a ConvertKit clone, but it’s more than capable once you get past the quirks.

Email marketing on Kartra

Affiliate management is included on all plans

It’s no secret that joining an affiliate program and getting the right people to click on your links is one of the easiest ways to generate an income online.

But, as Leonardo DiCaprio says in the movie Inception, sometimes you need to go one level deeper.

Affiliate management on Kartra

What’s the next level?

Recruiting affiliates to promote YOUR products.

If you wanted to do this with a standard website, you would almost certainly need to integrate some additional software that handles affiliate management, like Tapfilliate or PayKickStart.

This kind of software can easily set you back around $100/month, but both ClickFunnels and Kartra have this included as part of their suite.

The key difference, however, is that Kartra includes an affiliate portal on all plans— including their $97/month plan—while ClickFunnels only gives you access to their affiliate portal (Backpack) on the $297/month platinum plan.

If that wasn’t convincing enough, Backpack is pretty buggy and isn’t known for being a reliable product overall.

It has a superior membership portal

Selling information on a recurring membership model isn’t exactly a new concept these days, but the technical hassle of setting up such a system still plagues online businesses today.

Here’s the good news:

Whether you choose ClickFunnels or Kartra, you’ll be able to create a membership area, embed videos, audio clips, written content, allow access to individual products and bill members on a recurring basis.

Superior membership on Kartra

ClickFunnels is perfectly adequate for membership sites, but Kartra still takes the edge on this one.

Here’s what Kartra can do (but ClickFunnels can’t):

  • It can group products using “levels” and allow access to these levels instead of individual products
  • It supports native comments/discussions on lesson pages to encourage students to interact with both you and other students
  • It doesn’t allow students to mark lessons as complete and doesn’t give any indication of progress
  • It gives you (the course creator) analytics to see how students are progressing through the course
  • It has a flexible signup process after purchase (ClickFunnels forces you to use the same email you purchased with)
  • It allows direct uploads for videos and audio clips

Membership sites on Kartra

It has an awesome video hosting solution baked right in

It doesn’t matter if you’re adding a video sales letter (VSL) to a funnel page or the latest funny cat clip to a blog post, you first need a place to host your video before you can embed it.

For Kartra users, video hosting is included in every package starting at 50GB bandwidth, meaning you can upload video content directly to Kartra’s servers and embed them into your pages natively.

Video hosting for Kartra users

But more than just being able to host videos, Kartra allows you to customize the video experience in a few interesting ways.

Some examples:

  • You can customize the appearance of your video player to match your branding (and ensure it doesn’t look like a YouTube video)
  • You can overlay call-to-actions to generate sales or collect email addresses directly from your videos
  • You can tag leads when they reach a certain point in your video, and it will sync with Kartra’s autoresponder
  • Apply actions when the video finishes, such as looping the video, playing another video or redirecting to a custom URL

ClickFunnels, however, doesn’t host video at all. This means either resorting to YouTube (looks amateur) or shelling out some cash for a premium video hosting service, like Vimeo or Wistia.

With paid Wistia plans starting at $99/month for a measly 10 videos, you could end up paying more for video hosting than you do for ClickFunnels.

Customize the video on Kartra

You can use it to build a full website and blog

If you’re considering Kartra, there’s a good chance you’re looking for something that covers all the bases, including having a fully functional website.

Spoiler: Kartra ticks all the right boxes.

You’ll find various high-quality templates for different industries, and you can tie all your pages together with a consistent website header, navigation, and footer. You know, like a real website.

What else does a real website tend to have these days? A blog. Adding a blog to your website is still one of the best ways to generate organic traffic through SEO and social media, and Kartra has blogging functionality built right in.

Can you do this with ClickFunnels? Kind of… but barely.

Yes, it’s possible to hack a website together by building the individual pages into a funnel, but it would be painful to manage as everything would be static.

In other words, you’d need to manually edit the header, navigation, and footer on every page when updating or adding new links to your site, and blogging would require manually updating the blog feed every time you hit publish.

Like I said, painful.

It (now) has a more generous affiliate program

If you’ve been in the affiliate marketing world long enough, you’ll know that affiliate commissions on software typically sit in the 10% to 30% range.

With Kartra, you get:

  • 40% on every sale
  • 40% on all recurring payments
  • Extra commission on all upgraded plans (automatic recalculation)
  • 10% on all second-tier referrals (referrals from your affiliates)

I challenge you to find software products with a more generous affiliate program.

Generous affiliate program on Kartra

And yes, ClickFunnels has a similar program.

However, not only did they remove tiered commissions, but they also recently introduced levels which make it considerably harder to reach the full 40% commission structure.

These levels are:

  • Unapproved: Affiliates who are just getting started with the ClickFunnel affiliate program get 20% commission on all sales.
  • Approved: Affiliates who have made $10k in ClickFunnels affiliate commissions or successfully complete the One Funnel Away challenge get 30% commission on all sales.
  • Qualified: Affiliates who have referred at least 40 active members to ClickFunnels get 40% commission on all sales.

ClickFunnels vs Kartra Pricing

The standard ClickFunnels plan starts at $97 a month. This lets you build any sales funnel you want, but lacks Follow Up Funnels for email marketing and Backpack for running your own affiliate program. Plus you are limited to building 20 funnels in your account.

Upgrading to the $297 a month plan gets you access to all of ClickFunnel’s features, plus unlimited funnels

Kartra, on the other hand, has its Starter plan at $99 a month. You are limited to creating 100 pages, 2 membership sites, and 2,500 leads.

The next level up Silver plan unlocks all of Kartra’s features and you can create unlimited pages, products, and membership sites, plus a quota of 12,500 leads.

It also has Gold and Platinum plans which mainly increase the number of leads and emails you can send per month.

For me, the Starter plan pricing for both ClickFunnels and Kartra is comparable. The main plus with Kartra is that you’re able to run your own affiliate program on that plan, while you can’t do the same with ClickFunnels.

Kartra also has better upgrade pricing. You’re saving almost $100 a month vs the ClickFunnels Platinum membership.

Where ClickFunnels has the advantage in pricing is when your email list really starts to grow. ClickFunnels stays at the same $297/mo price point no matter your list size. But with Kartra, you have to keep upgrading your plan as you surpass your plan’s quota.

Final Thoughts

Honestly, ClickFunnels and Kartra are both great products. I’m a customer of both and will continue to be for the foreseeable future.

Kartra really has some compelling features going for it. Their membership sites are great and its affiliate management is much better than ClickFunnels. It also has some features that ClickFunnels is probably never going to add like built-in video hosting, help desk, and calendars.

But there’s are a couple of reasons why I continue to make ClickFunnels my funnel builder of choice for most projects.

One, I need the flexibility that ClickFunnels’ provides.  For example, I am a huge fan of ActiveCampaign, and I think it’s much better than ClickFunnels’ Follow Up Funnels or Kartra’s mail capabilities.  And only ClickFunnels allows me to use ActiveCampaign with its built-in integration.

Two, the community and ecosystem that Russell Brunson has created around ClickFunnels is unmatched.

This means more angles to make money as a ClickFunnels affiliate with all the different products you can promote.  So I know there’s a market for each and every new product that Russell puts out.

And the community is really great.  Everyone is so passionate and helpful.  And I’ve been able to find so many different opportunities and partnerships just by making myself a part of the various ClickFunnels’ groups.

No matter which solution you pick though, make sure to grab my ClickFunnels bonuses or Kartra bonuses before you buy.

Take the free 14-day ClickFunnels trial

Try Kartra for $1 for 14 days

ClickFunnels vs Kartra FAQ

Which software are you personally using the most?

Although I’m a paying customer of both, I find myself using ClickFunnels more often. I’m more familiar with it, and it’s easier for me to create funnels quickly with it.

Is ClickFunnels or Kartra more cost effective for my business?

It honestly really depends on how you are planning to use the softwares. If you need a sales funnel builder with email marketing and affiliate program built in, then Karta is the better deal. However, once your list size starts growing, then ClickFunnels starts to be cheaper since it’s email marketing is a fix cost.

Does ClickFunnels or Kartra have the better affiliate program?

ClickFunnels has made some recent changes to its affiliate program that make it less appealing. However, overall I still feel that ClickFunnels better because it has a better value ladder and bigger brand recognition. Kartra is still worth promoting though, especially if you are using them in your business.

Affiliate Disclaimer: I hope you enjoyed this ClickFunnels vs Kartra comparison post. Please note that any links inside this article may be affiliate links to ClickFunnels or Kartra. That means that if you click on one of the links and sign up, I may be compensated for it. If you do happen to click, thanks! Any money we make keeps this site running and allows us to keep producing high-quality reviews. I am an independent ClickFunnels Affiliate, not an employee. The opinions expressed here are my own and are not official statements of ClickFunnels or its parent company, Etison LLC.
About Chris Fong

Chris Fong is a blogger and a 6 figure a year affiliate marketer. He enjoys helping others learn about different marketing tools and helping people achieve success online.