Kajabi and ClickFunnels are possibly the most popular platforms, in their respective category.
Both have been around for a little while now and have grown massive communities of course creators wanting the best tool to sell their digital products.
They also have been very successful at attracting big names in several industries, turned into ambassadors for the platform. Examples like Amy Portfield and Brendon Bruchard for Kajabi and Natalie Hodson, Garrett White for ClickFunnels but also of course its co-founder Russell Brunson.
A lot of similarities then for these platforms BUT quite a few major differences when looking at them closer.
And if you're hesitating between the two or simply wondering if switching over might be the best option, then this is what we're going to help you decide on today!
Kajabi vs ClickFunnels: Different types of platforms?
This is a distinction we need to make before breaking down the different features.
Because the truth is, we can't compare what's not really comparable!
Kajabi is an all-in-one platform to sell digital products. That means that its main selling point is that if you're a course creator wanting to market your product, you could use the platform for EVERYTHING: pages, hosting and delivering the course, taking payment, email, affiliate, blogging,...
ClickFunnels is an advanced funnel builder. It helps you make it super easy to build a conversion-focused sequence of pages, emails, follow ups. Including a cart and affiliate system as well. But it's not really designed for you to deliver your digital course or membership.
This also explains some of the differences in price structure for each platform.
We'll talk more extensively about what each platform has the other doesn't, but keep that distinction in mind when reading through this comparison.
This is why we'll compare apple to apple and the feature the two platforms actually have in common!
Feature Comparison #1: Funnel Building
Let's start with something surely important for all course creators wanting to market their courses: the page and funnel building capabilities of both platforms.
Now before diving into it, I just want to make a note that this comparison is perhaps slightly unfair for Kajabi, since it's not really promoting itself as a funnel building tool, like ClickFunnels is?
That being said let's compare!
Let's be honest, when building pages most of course creators would rather spend as little time as possible so they can focus on teaching and marketing?
Already-made templates for pages are therefore very valuable as they allow you to not have to start from scratch and simply adapt a proven design to your liking.
Both Kajabi and Clickfunnels have templates for pages? but a little differently:
First of all, ClickFunnels does have a lot more options for this?
But it's also a lot easier to pick one since they are actually categorised in types of pages: sales page, optins, webinar registration, thank you page, upsell page,...
Kajabi has a much simpler way of displaying its templates and different options:
The way Kajabi is different here is that it allows you to pick a theme (read: a certain ?feel?) more than anything else.
But to be very honest after having spent a lot of time building pages in Kajabi, you often end up being better off starting from scratch anyway.
Another advantage of ClickFunnels here is that you can save your templates and re-use them easily later in another funnel. To recreate this in Kajabi you'd have to duplicate a page.
And this is another difference in Kajabi and ClickFunnels, whereas the latter helps you categories your pages in Funnels, Kajabi groups them in Pipelines that end up usually being more confusing for people than just keeping them in their Pages...
Front-end page building:
Once you've chosen a template to start with, the next step is to jump into the page builder and start tweaking!
Kajabi and ClickFunnels have a somewhat similar interface with a front-end builder - meaning you'll be editing directly in the front-end and seeing exactly what the page will look like for the users.
The UI is similar with a panel on the side to add different block, sections and rows:
Both are drag and drops and easy to use editors, the only difference is that to edit text in Kajabi, you'll be writing it in the left side panel versus directly on the page in ClickFunnels:
You can change the view to Desktop and Phone and make edit or hide elements for one view and not the other!
Similar thing is happening here with sections: you'll have templates in both Kajabi and Clickfunnels of different types: Hero, Pricing, Call To Action, Comments, FAQ,...
These are not exactly templates in Kajabi as much as frameworks, you'll get these populated with placeholder text.
On the Clickfunnels side, you'll actually get a bit more direction and choice for these pre-made sections, with some compelling and proven designs:
But even more interesting, you'll also be able to save your favorite Sections and insert them on any other page!
This is something you simply can't do in Kajabi and would have to recreate that section again over and over, which can be rather frustrating?
Inside any section, you'll then choose what kind of blocks you want to have in there: Text, Video, Image, Timer, Form,...
Not much of a difference here between Kajabi and ClickFunnels in terms of the diversity of blocks you'll be able to play with or their functionality.
One of the main differences that makes the Kajabi page builder a little frustrating at times is that you can't move one block from one section to the other?
Which can be a huge time waster.
Here are a few other differences between the 2 platforms when it comes to funnel building:Upsell/Downsell: ClickFunnels & Kajabi both allow for multiple upsell/downsell.
But ClickFunnels allow for more customization of the upsell page:
Kajabi on the other hand, doesn't give has much space for creativity on these post-purchase pages:
A/B Testing: ClickFunnels allows for a native A/B testing tool, which enables you to create variations of a page and split a certain percentage of traffic to redirect to. You can then compare and see which one performs best to optimize your funnel.
Kajabi simply does not have a native functionality for split testing, and you will have to look at 3rd party tools like Google Optimize to achieve this.
Code Access: Kajabi allows for full code access on its higher plans to be able to fully customize anything on the platform. This is a big asset if you want to use a self-hosted all in one but don't want to give up on the customization.
Clickfunnels does not allow for code access, beyond the <header> and <footer> sections, mostly used for tracking and external tool implementation purposes.
The Bottom Line: Funnel Builder
Comparing the two platforms on page and funnel building was a battle won in advance for ClickFunnels. Its technology for that feature is clearly superior to Kajabi - not surprising considering funnel building is the main use of the tool!
We'll forgive Kajabi for these advanced features: saving template, A/B testing, but a little less for some other things that are somewhat basic to page building: pre-made section, moving elements from one section to another...
Feature Comparison #2: Checkout
Both Kajabi and ClickFunnels have a native checkout/cart. Meaning that you can take payment directly within the platform and deliver your product (digital or physical) right away after having connected a payment gateway like Stripe or Paypal.
Checkout customization: The first thing to note is that ClickFunnels and Kajabi have a slightly different way of allowing you to create a checkout page.
Kajabi will automatically create one when you create an Offer - which is what you set up to give access to a Product and decide on pricing, payment structure and post purchase actions/automations.
You'll then by default be taken to edit that checkout but with much less flexibility than the page builder since these are separate pages in essence:
These already-made checkout pages Kajabi creates for you have been optimized for conversion based on many iterations the company has done. But just understand there's not much you can change to it.
ClickFunnels on the other hand, treats checkout pages just like any other page, allowing full customization:
It also allows for 2-step optin, which are great tools to follow up with cart abandoners and collect their email address (Step 1) before showing them price and/or credit card fields (Step 2).
This is something you can't do without custom coding on Kajabi.
Product type: Something to understand about Kajabi is that it specializes in helping you sell and deliver digital products.
That's why it's actually not the right tool to sell physical products like books or accessories.
The reason for that is because when someone buys something from a Kajabi cart, they will be prompted to create an account and be taken to their course library.
Which can be confusing for someone buying a physical product!
Now if you're selling a physical product alongside a digital one - let's say you're sending a welcome package to new membership users - then you can collect the information you need to go and fulfill that (address, zip, any additional info needed). But the platform isn't really made to sell these as standalone products. In this case it?d be better to use the native Shopify integration.
This is also why Kajabi doesn't have an e-commerce looking checkout, with quantities and adding different products to the cart - like you would on Amazon for instance.
That's just again because that wouldn't make a lot of sense for selling courses?
One real limitation that should be part of the priority updates for the Kajabi team in my opinion, would be to allow different pricing options on the same cart (full price + payment plan for example) which is currently not possible - you'll have to link out to the 2 different pricing options/checkout from the sales page.
ClickFunnels actually caters to both types of products: physical and digital.
People don't need to create an account if that's not necessary and you will have the option to add as many product variation as possible:
Point taken again for ClickFunnels although we'll notice an uncommon limitation for the platform which is that you can't have both Stripe and Paypal payment options at the same time on the cart (without custom coding). You'll have to decide on one or the other or create 2 different Products/Checkout - 1 for each payment method...
That being said, ClickFunnels allows for an easy sandbox/testing mode for Stripe purchases, whereas you'll have to create coupons or refund yourself with Kajabi to test the checkout.
Delivery: See the Product Delivery section further below for the full details - but it's worth mentioning here that Kajabi will have more flexibility for delivering digital products than Clickfunnels, for example you'll be able to to choose how long the access to the product will be available for and a start date (useful for pre-selling)!
Lastly for the checkout, a brief note on the Affiliate side of things. Both platforms have a rather similar set of standard features for affiliate: dashboard with stats, create different links,...
You'll also need to be on the Growth plan for Kajabi and the Platinum package for ClickFunnels to get the affiliate feature.
The Bottom Line: Checkout
Once again here, ClickFunnels seem to have an edge mainly because of its versatility.
Even if you're just looking to sell digital products, having the option to customize the checkout however you want and include several pricing option to choose from is making Clickfunnels a better option.
Feature Comparison #3: Emails/Automations
One of the big upside for both platforms is the fact that not only can you design a funnel to get people in, but you can also follow up with them via email.
Note that on that end, you'll need to have the Platinum plan ($297/mo) on ClickFunnels to get access to Follow-Ups Funnel and the email capability, whereas you'd get that on any plan with Kajabi.
Both platforms will have different templates you can use to design your emails:
This is also something you can use for your regular newsletters or any automated sequences ? read: you could get rid of any external email software you're using.
If you're migrating from another platform, you'll be able to import your contacts and recreate the tags you had before.
An upside of Kajabi is the fact that having both the email/automations functionalities and the courses inside the platforms, allow for a lot of cool things you can setup: tagging people based on their progress in the course, easily creating automations for cancelling subscriptions and access to to the course?
This is something that could be recreated with ClickFunnels but not natively.
Both platforms also allow a sort of lite version of a CRM, with the activity of the user and the different interactions:
The Bottom Line: Email & Automations
All in all, both platforms are rather similar when comparing this feature. Both allow for advanced automations and different designs for your emails.
Kajabi has a slight advantage simply because of its all-in-one nature and having the course information in the same place as well.
It's also important to notice the steep increase in monthly fee to be able to have the Follow Up Funnels feature on ClickFunnel (from $97/mo to $297/mo).
Feature Comparison #4: Product Delivery
And now let's compare the last feature: the product delivery!
So once someone has trusted you and made a payment, what's the experience like to get and use the product.
Of course here, it depends on what that product is: digital or physical. We've mentioned the fact that ClickFunnels has a little edge over Kajabi when it comes to physical products, as this isn't really something Kajabi is made for delivering?
But if you're a course creator let's look at what both platforms offer to deliver on your digital course or membership!
First point, Kajabi is ACTUALLY a course platform. Meaning that it allows for a real course experience with different theme and layout:
You can easily create categories and sections in the course, uploading the content and downloadables needed for students.
But also for a true customization of the experience for the student: track progress rate, create assessment, make announcements, resume the course where you left it,...
In brief, everything you need to deliver a world class course and the maximum value for your students. After all, the perceived value of a course also happens after joining and how the course ?feels?.
Kajabi has always put a lot of importance on its UI and UX both in the back-end (for you to navigate as the course creator) and for your students going through the program.
You'll even have the capability to create a Community product to gather your people in a group, a bit like a Facebook group, with different feeds of discussion:
This will help improve engagement and make your students feel like part of something bigger!
ClickFunnels on the other hand, offers a rather significantly different experience.
You'll be able to create a member's area by creating a login page + Membership area:
You can then design the different pages for the course and add content:
Clearly, this is a bit of a clunky process and doesn't feel like a real course hosting and management feature?
If you're just looking to deliver a quick training or downloadable this can be a good fit however!
But if you want to create a real learning and user experience, Kajabi will be a much better choice.
The Bottom Line: Product Delivery
ClickFunnels makes it easier to deliver a physical product, we've mentioned that before.
But when it comes to digital products, there's really no comparison!
Kajabi is a fully fledged course hosting and management platform, with unique tools allowing you to deliver the best experience for your students and keep them around for a long time.
One of the hardest things sometimes as a course creator to do, is to actually get people to follow through the course they bought from you?
ClickFunnels? membership is a little limited on that end and would only be advisable if you're just looking to deliver quick trainings or downloadables (PDF, slides, etc.).
Kajabi vs Clickfunnels: Other Things to Know?
Pricing: A quick look at a pricing comparison for the two platforms to truly understand what value you're getting for the price:
I think the biggest thing to understand about ClickFunnels pricing is that you're ?only? getting the funnel building side with the lowest plan ($97/mo) and if you want to get the affiliate and email feature, you'll need to go with the $297/mo, which does make it sensibly more expensive than Kajabi.
Community/Support: Both platforms have a tremendous and hard-to-replicate advantage over most of their competitors: their community.
With tens of thousands of active users, Kajabi and Clickfunnels both have large Facebook groups and a range of experts or virtual assistants that will be able to help you get setup or answer any of your burning questions
They also both have great support, live chat and extensive knowledge banks to help you troubleshoot problems on your own, or simply get started selling your awesome products!