Kajabi vs GrooveFunnels: Expert Comparison 

 Updated: August 23, 2021

kajabi vs groovefunnels

With the recent launch of the brand new GrooveFunnels full suite at the end of 2020, the all-in-one online course platforms niche has changed.

And as a course creator, choosing the right tools to market and deliver your programs is not an easy task! So when a new platform comes out promising the world, it's tempting to start playing around with it and see what the hype is all about.

That's maybe because you're just starting out or because you're looking to change from a solution you're already using like one of the popular platforms: Kajabi, New Zenler, Teachable,...

In this comparison, I'm going to try to compare apples to apples and what criteria you should consider to make for an informed decision on which one of the 2 might be a better choice!

Kajabi and GrooveFunnels: What are they?

Kajabi and GrooveFunnels are both all-in-one platforms. This means that the key promise is that you'd be able to have everything you need to market, sell and deliver your online courses in one platform instead of having to integrate different tools together.

Usually these features include: funnel building, email marketing, course design and hosting, cart features to take payments,...

Now, there are some key differences between Kajabi and GrooveFunnels, even though we just put them in the same category.

Kajabi is specifically designed to sell online programs and digital products your students will need to get access to and consume in the member's area.

GrooveFunnels is a lot more flexible as it also has everything you need to sell downloadable and physical products as well as online courses and memberships.

That doesn't mean one is necessarily better than the other, but it's important to understand that difference...

More on that throughout the review as that will of course influence a lot of the features and flow of the platforms differently.

Feature Comparison #1: Funnel Building

A big part of investing into an all-in-one platform is the fact that you can build a site and pages there. This then enables you to build marketing funnels and in our case, sell your online courses.

GrooveFunnels, with GroovePages, and Kajabi both have put a lot of work into this feature that's very often one that you'll spend a lot of time on as a course creator inside the platform.

The best way to compare these two is to take it step by step on how you will get to create your pages, which is similar for both: 

1 - Pick a page template

2 - Create Sections

3 - Add blocks

Quick step back here before getting into these steps, whereas Kajabi accounts only really allow for creating pages under one site, GroovePages enables more categorization.

You'll be able to create multi ?sites? (that you can connect to different domains) and then different pages and funnels inside that side:

On the other hand, you'll have to upgrade to the highest plan on Kajabi (Pro at $399/mo) to have access to more than one site, and it will sit under a different account.

So a quick point taken for GrooveFunnels right off the bat!

Page Templates:

Both of these all-in-one platforms allow you to start pages from scratch? but let's be honest it's a whole lot better to start with well-designed templates!

Here the comparison is pretty simple:

GroovePages allow for a much wider range of templates for all types of pages? whereas Kajabi only really gives you framework for pages and different ?themes?

GroovePages templates - Click to enlarge!

Kajabi page templates - Click to enlarge!

On top of that, GroovePages? templates give really cool copywriting guidance in their text placeholders. In contrast, the Kajabi templates will only contain lorem ipsum text.

Lastly, you will be able to save templates and pages to reuse them later in GroovePages. The only way to do that in Kajabi is by duplicating them which isn't exactly as convenient?

Page sections:

Ok so now you've picked a cool template, you get into the builder and have the ability to add sections!

These can be: Hero, Call to Action, About, Testimonials, Form sections,...

Here again you'll be able to select pre-made templates with GroovePages

And the biggest difference again with Kajabi, is that the latest only really allows to add section that look more like frameworks you'll fill in:

No copy guidance and very little pre-made design too?

This is actually GroovePages also offers - called Wireframes?

Point taken again for GrooveFunnels, which also allows to easily save sections to re-use them later on other pages (not do-able with Kajabi)!

Page Blocks

Inside each section, pre-made or not, you'll then start editing the different elements: text, image, button, form, video,...

This is what you can drag & drop and re-arrange easily.

GroovePages has a wider variety of blocks, but this wouldn't really be a big difference to be honest.

But here is the key thing to understand: GroovePages is a real front-end, drag & drop page builder whereas Kajabi pages aren't really:

Kajabi block creation (click to enlarge)

GroovePages block drag & drop (click to enlarge)

This makes for a big difference when it comes to dragging blocks exactly where you want and between sections for example!

With Kajabi: you can't drag blocks from one section to another at all (only the whole section!)...

On top of that, GroovePages blocks do have a bit more flexibility and design options, for example: editing Hover state, shading, transparency, block-level CSS, global style,...

These may not be a big deal for most course creators but having the choice is always good!

Both page builders allow for code editing too if you feel like getting your hands dirty.

And last but not least point I'll make about some of the key differences between these 2 page builder is the fact that GroovePages have a revision/version history tool.

Meaning that you can easily go back to how the page was a few minutes ago before you screw up!

This is simply not available in any form in Kajabi and all past versions are lost?

The Bottom Line: Funnel Builder

Point taken for GrooveFunnels here with a very solid page builder that really does everything you could wish for.

This might be one of the bigger weaknesses for Kajabi right now with a good but not great feature.

It's useful to say however that Kajabi's superior user experience may make the page builder also easier to use for beginners?

Feature Comparison #2: Checkout

The next major feature we'll compare is the checkout, which includes the different payment and pricing options but also some other funnel feature like upsell/downsell, bump, or the affiliate system!

The way you create an offer with checkout and pricing in Kajabi is by setting up an Offer. You'll pick which Product (aka courses) you want to include access to as well as automations and post-purchase actions (emails, tagging, redirects, etc.), and 1 upsell.

In GrooveFunnels, you'll use GrooveSell in order to set this up. From there you'll create a new funnel and start adding the main product (called Frontend Product) to it as well as any upsells you want.

Right off the bat, with GrooveSell you'll be able to choose whether you want the checkout to have 1 or multiple pricing and 1 or multi steps:

This is a pretty big hassle of Kajabi in that you won't be able to create 2-step checkouts and you will have to create a new Offer and checkout for each pricing (e.g monthly vs annually)...

To be fair with Kajabi however, creating a product/checkout in GrooveSell is a fairly long and thorough process, whereas it only takes a few clicks to create an Offer with the former

Let me highlight the main difference between the 2 platforms when it comes to setting that up:

Pricing option: although both platforms have a great variety of choices regardless of the plans you're on, GrooveSell does has more pricing options.

Mainly in terms of interval, where you can adjust both the recurring payments and payment instalments to be bi-weekly. Instalments have to be on a monthly basis with Kajabi.

Coming soon too, in GrooveSell, you'll be able to set up recurring installments!

Free and paid trial are available for both platforms (but limited to 90 days for Kajabi)

Payment gateways: both platforms have Stripe and Paypal native integrations (classic).

GrooveSell also allows for NMI and Authorize.net.

But more interestingly, GrooveFunnels is planning on launching very soon their own native payment gateway (yes, to replace the Stripe and Paypal!).

GroovePay promises to be the cheapest payment processors for credit cards out there when it comes out. A promise still to fulfil but a very exciting thing to watch out for, especially for people living in countries where Stripe and Paypal are not easily available.

Checkout design: quite a few key differences in how you'd design your checkout between Kajabi and GrooveSell.

Kajabi allows you to get back in a front-end page builder (with limited blocks), whereas GrooveSell setup is a back-end thing:

Kajabi checkout design

GrooveSell Checkout process

One isn't necessarily better than the other but Kajabi's process does allow to see exactly and in real time what the end result is going to look like.

The first thing that GrooveSells offers that Kajabi doesn't here is different ?Type? of checkout: hosted, popup on an external site, Embedded, custom design.

With Kajabi you'll have the hosted solution and a standalone checkout page on your Kajabi site.

A cart abandonment feature is available for both but GrooveSell allows for more than the 1 email Kajabi is going to send out for these users.

You're able to add this lead to a list and later setup a whole automation, which can't be achieved in Kajabi for cart abandoners. 

Only problem: just like in many other instances, you're able to add this user to a list for an external integration and email marketing software (Mailchimp, ActiveCampaign,...) but not to the native GrooveMail tool, a very strange shortcoming!

The last notable difference between the 2 checkout interface and design is the fact that (coming soon) you will be able to enable dynamic checkout language on GrooveSell that will adapt based on the user's geo-location.

Upsell/downsell: The only major difference here is the fact that you can setup as many upsells as you want with GrooveSell but only 1 with Kajabi.

Fulfilment: Kajabi is built to very simply allow you to natively take payments through this checkout and then grant access to a Product/course.

Not really to deliver a quick downloadable file or physical product which is something you can do in GrooveSell.

But again, weirdly, right now GrooveFunnels doesn't allow to grant access to a GrooveMember course when purchasing in a GrooveSell cart, the only thing you can do for now is integrate and give access to another platform with webhooks.

Affiliate system: both platforms allow to setup a native affiliate system (Growth plan needed for Kajabi).

You'll setup a general commission but can then override this for specific offers or specific affiliates for both Kajabi and GrooveFunnels.

In both platforms, your affiliate will get a dashboard with the affiliate links you've made visible for them to drive traffic too.

The major difference is that GrooveSells allows for 2 tiers of affiliate. Meaning that if your affiliate refers a user that then becomes an affiliate themselves and make a sell, affiliate #1 will also get a commission (that you can set).

The second biggest difference is that you have the ability to setup Affiliate Promo tools with GrooveSells: email swipes, blogs, social post, ads, email signature,...

Essentially a lot of pre-made content to make it as easy as possible for your affiliate to actually promote your course!

This isn't possible to setup in the Dashboard in Kajabi.

Proof: Lastly, this is a feature that is simply not available in Kajabi's checkout: a native prood notification.

You've probably seen these little message popups on sales page before on the bottom left corner of your screen:

These are proven to increase conversion by making it easy to display social proof in your funnel

Although you'd normally have to use an external too like UseProof, Groovsell has a native feature to do this!

After the setup you can then copy the code snippet on any page of your funnel you want.

The Bottom Line: Checkout

Quite a lot of differences here between the 2 platforms, the biggest I feel are game changers are the ability GrooveSells has to allow for multiple pricing options and the better flexibility for payment gateways, checkout placement, upsell/downsells and affiliate management.

One thing to highlight again though is the failure for GrooveFunnels to have integrated their own native tool into the process: not being able to add leads/buyers to a GrooveMail list, or not being able to grant access to a GrooveMember product,...

Feature Comparison #3: Emails/Automations

One of the big upside of an all-in-one platforms is to have an integrating email marketing system.

The GrooveFunnels tool for this is called GrooveMail, and you'll simply go to Marketing > Email Campaigns in Kajabi.

The 2 platforms have more similarities than differences in this area. They both categories campaigns into Broadcast (one-off emails), Sequences (autoresponders), and Automation (If/then functions).

You'll be able to create tags or lists (not in Kajabi) and segments of your audience.

kajabi templates

To be honest, both make the management or several broadcast or sequences a little messy by not allowing to group them into folders.

What GrooveMail has Kajabi doesn't:

Visualization: One thing I really like about what GrooveMail did when it comes to setting up automatic sequences, is the cool visualization. This is usually only found in standalone advanced email marketing tools:

This makes the whole setup and flow of an automation so much easier to plan and build!

On top of that you'll be able to build Yes/No path, which is hardly do-able in Kajabi and would necessitate some workaround with Automations?

I also really like the added flexibility of the Time Delay action which enables you to choose the exact time and date the next email or action will be happening, which is something you can't do in Kajabi as flexibly.

Integrated Text messages: this is still yet to be available but is in making. You'll be able to send text messages directly from GrooveMail with an already integrated Twilio system.

As you can see this can be then easily added in your automation and campaigns!

What Kajabi has GrooveMail doesn't:

Overall, and with emails particularly, Kajabi has a much superior UX.

For example, GrooveMail has separated the stats and the campaigns setup in 2 tabs: Campaigns and Analytics, whereas Kajabi has made this a lot easier to review by consolidating both

Another example would be that Kajabi doesn't really have the concept of a ?list?. With strategic tagging and segmentation, this is simply not necessary.

The experience and process to setup an email is simply overall a lot more intuitive and seamless for Kajabi, which is a big plus for beginners!

And secondly, when sending a Broadcast (coming soon for sequences too), you will have a lot more design ability with Kajabi than GrooveMails to create some great looking emails:

Kajabi Email builder

GrooveMail email builder

A sensible difference that would satisfy the creatives and design-sensible course creators!

Not much to say on the Automation side, both platforms are very similar.

The Bottom Line: Email & Automations

I'll have to say both platforms on this side of things are overall equal. GrooveFunnels once again has an advantage on the feature side but the superior UX and design capabilities of Kajabi can't be ignored.

It's a tie!

Feature Comparison #4: Product Delivery

And the last feature we'll compare is one that's at the core of an online course platform like our two contender here: the actual course experience and delivery.

Selling your knowledge and create a great course is important but the layout and tools inside the member's area matter just as much for your student to go through it? and come back for more!

In GrooveFunnels, you'll use the GrooveMembers feature to create your each memberships. In Kajabi you'll create a Product (limit of 3 on the Basic plan).

A first difference to notice is that Kajabi organize your different courses under the same roof and a library whereas GrooveMembers has different login URL for each.

Kajabi allows you to setup and upload content for your course (video, downloadable, text,...) with a back-end builder, whereas GrooveMembers does that with a front-end builder:

Kajabi module builder

GrooveMember drag & drop course builder

The big advantage of Kajabi here is the flexibility for different layout and themes. Depending on the kind of course or membership or the feel you want, you'll find a cool theme that will fit

GrooveMembers only allows for that one layout you see in the image further above?

More surprisingly, the excellent GrooveVideo which allows you to upload your videos and add some really cool text overlay and even in-video Call To Action, is not even an option to embed these in your courses!

So you will have to use an external video host like YouTube or Vimeo? very disappointing.

Kajabi on the other hand, allows for a native video upload which can super fast if you're uploading from Google Drive or Dropbox.

Bottom line here is that Kajabi has much superior course building capabilities for both design and features.

For example you can create native Assessments for your students to take at different stages of the course, and even only unlock the rest of the course if they?ve taken it!

GrooveFunnels is planning to do something similar with GrooveQuiz but this is still in the making.

The only major thing GrooveMembers has on Kajabi right now is the ability to set different access for different membership tiers inside the same course. Alongside the ability to drip on a set date.

You simply can't do that in Kajabi and will have to create another Product, which are limited to 3 on the basic plan!

So for example if you want to create a free module inside your course and then unlock the rest only for paying members, you'll be able to easily do that in one membership with GrooveMembers but will need 2 Products in Kajabi.

Apart from that there's really little comparison between the 2 student's experience between the 2 platforms and Kajabi is very much coming out on top!

The Bottom Line: Product Delivery

Big difference between the 2 platforms on that end! Whereas GrooveMembers allows for a meek drag and drop basic build for your courses and membership, Kajabi has the whole package of a world-class experience!

We do deplore the inability for more flexibility within one Product (on Kajabi) but this doesn't really offset the lack of flexibility of GrooveMembers for this feature and again the fact that it doesn't even integrate with its own tool! (GrooveVideo)

Kajabi vs GrooveFunnels: How To Choose

What I like about Kajabi vs GrooveFunnels

  • Mature platform with a very seamless experience on the back-end, every just works!
  • World-class course experience and learning platform. All the tools you need to create and design an awesome course for your students
  • A strong community of fellow users and experts to feel part of something bigger and get the support every course creators need in their journey

What I like about GrooveFunnels vs Kajabi

  • Huge potential with features to truly only use the platform for everything you need as a course creator.
  • Pre-made templates and designs throughout the platforms, this is really a big difference and saves a lot of time.
  • Pioneering some tools like the Proof notification or the in-video elements? Which shows that you're investing in a platform that's here to change the industry!

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