Being a business owner can be a frustrating job and a costly one too. Especially if you have to manage and maintain a whole bunch of tools and programs just to keep your business running.
Add to that, the costs involved in having to learn digital marketing skills or hiring a team to do it for you (which can potentially be in the 1000s). Let’s face it, if you don’t put focus on digital marketing, you may as well close up shop. Especially nowadays where a lot of people are spending more time at home and on their digital devices.
Most business owners would prefer to focus on what they do best; serving their clients and/or customers and not have to worry about all that demanding tech and marketing stuff that just clogs up their time.
There’s just too much to focus on in order to be successful. Email marketing, social media marketing, content marketing, press releases, website issues, SEO, sales funnels and the list goes on.
As of 2021, there is a solution to almost all these problems. Kartra, the website builder, is aimed at simplifying all of this for business owners so that as a business owner, you can focus more time on your business and doing what you do best and at the same time, focus less time on the other stuff. Since Kartra is an all-in-one tech and marketing platform, you also save a huge amount in terms of costs. You don’t need 20 different tools to manage the different parts of your business.
In this article, I’m going to review pretty much everything you need to know about Kartra so that you can make an informed decision whether Kartra would be a right fit for your business.
I do admit I am affiliated with Kartra but I will be as unbiased as possible.
Kartra Review 2021 Summary: I highly recommend Kartra for almost any type of business; including local businesses, online businesses and boutique businesses. I wouldn’t recommend Kartra to enterprise level businesses or really small businesses (one-man show type of businesses).
So let’s get right into it!
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What is Kartra?
Kartra is an all-in-one platform for building an online business without needing to hire developers, copywriters, designers, or support teams. It has everything you need to succeed online.
It’s often mistaken as a website builder or a sales funnel builder. As far as I know, it is the only platform that can do almost everything needed to build an online business. And it does it really well.
Who uses Kartra?
Kartra is used by almost all types of businesses.
This includes, but isn’t limited to:
- Any local business: doctors, plumbers, dentists, electricians, financial planners, realtors, restaurants, etc
- Digital Marketing Agencies
- Tutors and Teachers
- Yoga, Dance and Fitness Instructors
- Food Delivery Businesses
- Online Course Creators
- Bloggers with following who are looking to sell products
- Pretty much any service-based business
There are so many alternatives out there. Off the top of my head, there’s GrooveFunnels, Kajabi, Builderall and Clickfunnels. They are awesome in their own right, but they tend to specialize in one area more than others.
For example, ClickFunnels is more specialized in building beautiful looking sales funnels rather than websites or email marketing. The same goes with GrooveFunnels. Kajabi is best for online course hosting. I’m not too sure about Builderall as I haven’t played around with it as much. They are fairly new to the market though. The main competitor to Kartra is ClickFunnels at the moment.
Is Kartra better than ClickFunnels?
ClickFunnels is slightly better at creating advanced sales funnels that convert. It’s a highly recommended tool if you sell digital products.
However, if you run an entire business, Kartra has more bang for your buck. For the same price as ClickFunnels, Kartra does a whole lot more allowing you to save a lot of money down the road.
Kartra is more focused on building an entire online business. This means handling your website, sales funnels, email marketing, booking appointments, SEO, and so on.
ClickFunnels has been around longer so there is much more support and help you can get anytime you get stuck.
What is the difference between Kartra and Kajabi?
Kartra is aimed at being an all-in-one platform for running an online business. From handling your website frontend to tracking your analytics and through to managing your leads.
Kajabi is primarily an online course platform allowing you to host and sell online courses on your own site.
Let’s now take a look into the main features of Kartra.
It has one of the best website builders integrated
Let’s start with what Kartra is mainly known for. Being a website builder!
There are so many different website builders out there. There are also free website builders out there. As a business owner, you would be shooting yourself in the foot if you go with a free website builder.
The main reason is due to the lack of customization. There are a large number of sites built with free website builders that people can intuitively tell and automatically judge how serious a business is.
Check out an article I’ve written about this here.
Kartra has a premium website builder built in. It allows much more flexibility and customization to really make your website look unique and stand out.
There are so many design templates available so you can have an amazing looking, high converting website in minutes and still customize it to truly make it yours. You can also access the Kartra Marketplace to buy design templates from other Kartra members if you want more options. You can even sell your own design templates if you’re good at that sort of thing and make more money on the side.
The best part is, as long as you don’t tell anyone you built your site with Kartra, no-one will figure it out. There’s nothing that gives it away that a website looks like it was built with Kartra (unless you use a super default theme).
It has 98% email deliverability
One of the issues nowadays when it comes to mass email sending is deliverability.
Many emails we send to our list tend to go to their spam or junk inbox. Gmail has a Promotions tab where a lot of those marketing types of emails tend to go. All of this reduces your chances of getting your email seen by your own list. This wasn’t an issue a few years ago, but it is now thanks to all those spammers and scammers.
Your message would rarely be seen by your potential ideal customers even if they are on your list.
Kartra has one of the highest deliverability rates in the world with around 98% deliverability. There’s a whole bunch of technicalities that go on behind the scenes for them to achieve this.
This means that if you run a campaign, most of your subscribers will see your email in their primary inbox. This will greatly reduce the likelihood of lost sales or opportunities.
Bear in mind, there is a limitation.
No matter which plan you go with, there is a cap on the amount of emails you can send out with Kartra.
If you don’t have a super large list, then you should be fine and can enjoy all the perks with Kartra Mail. It would take a really long time anyway to reach the limit on their highest plan.
However, if you’re a large influencer, you might be better off with a more dedicated platform for sending bulk emails.
It has seriously advanced email marketing capabilities
If you go with Kartra, you won’t need to use your existing email marketing tools (like MailChimp or Aweber) anymore.
Kartra has its own email management and automation system and can handle email marketing for you. You can create seriously advanced email automation funnels.
You can compose really personalized emails that can further increase engagement which should also help out a lot in terms of conversions.
It has the best sales funnel builder
Kartra is still regarded as the best sales funnel builder in the world.
Even though ClickFunnels is more specialized in this area, Kartra is more stable and has far more templates to work with.
You can easily draw out some advanced funnels using Kartra and it can replace tools like ClickFunnels completely if you don’t need some of the really advanced features.
It allows you to build a complete membership website
A complete membership portal can be setup within minutes.
This is the best way to service your customers or clients who are on a recurring payment plan and provide them premium services.
There are advanced features you can play with, such as membership tiers. The membership portal feature is especially great if you’re a coach, instructor or sell a library of online courses.
Check out my post on Kartra’s Membership portal.
It has a calendar system to keep you organized
Kartra has a calendar feature that can let your clients or customers book appointments whenever directly on your website.
If you’re a local dentist, you can open up this feature to let people book an appointment directly on the website.
The calendar has some smarts built in. For instance, the timezone will automatically convert based on a user’s geographical location.
The calendar system is so advanced that it not only allows one-on-one type of bookings (great if you do personal coaching, consulting or training), but also if you manage a team of people (e.g, you have an online school with a number of teachers).
Reminder notifications are all automated both for yourself and your clients.
It also has multiple calendar functionality. This is great if you manage team members or staff and each need their own calendar system.
A really cool feature is their live calendar feature which can be great to showcase upcoming events.
The calendar does have a few issues though. It tends to be a little intuitive at times, especially when it comes to rescheduling a time or adding text instructions for a booking.
It can do behavior-based marketing automation
This feature can replace tools like Drip.
You can set up your Kartra pages to automatically change based on how users have interacted with you before.
For instance, you pages can automatically change with a different look and messaging based on whether:
- The user has entered your page for the first time
- The user has seen your page before (but may be on the fence about working with you)
- The user has seen a few videos in your membership site
- The user is subscribed to your email list
This is called Kartra’s BAM (Behavior Adapted Marketing).
It’s a really cool feature that can increase your conversions.
It can manage all your leads in one place
Kartra can also be considered as a CRM (Customer Relationship Management platform).
It doesn’t have the expansive toolset and features as you’d expect from a fully dedicated CRM platform like Salesforce and SAP.
However, it does a really good job in managing your database full of leads, customers and subscribers.
There is so much data and information collected about each lead, and you can easily see at a glance where your lead is as part of their customer journey.
You can combine this with Kartra’s BAM to really optimize your campaigns and increase your conversions overall.
It even has a lead scoring feature that can compare with (and replace) something like Hubspot.
It has an advanced checkout system
Kartra can help you create really amazing looking checkout pages.
But there’s more to it than just looks.
You can set multiple price points for products, for example if you offer tier-pricing.
You can also set multiple ways to pay for products or services. Some examples include one-time payments, recurring payments, or split payments. It can also handle free trials, special discounts and so on.
If you want to increase your average order value, or your customer lifetime value, you can add in upsells, downsells and last minute offers. These are just fancy ways of saying you can offer additional products of yours during checkout so that you can potentially take home more money.
Kartra does have a feature that can handle the listings of products, similar to what you would find with Shopify and WooCommerce. However, it’s still not as feature rich as those platforms and wouldn’t really handle a huge library of items that well. This would be a problem if you’re an eCommerce store selling a very large variety of goods (in the thousands).
Kartra is best suited for selling digital products and services and does an awesome job at doing so.
It allows you to host and sell online video courses
This allows you to replace platforms like Teachable, Thinkific, Podia and Kajabi.
You can create a really beautiful and high converting online course platform with Kartra.
Kartra’s video hosting is blazing fast and provides users with a great experience.
You can even do things like add in a call-to-action on the video itself which can help a lot to drive conversions and sales.
Again, it isn’t as dedicated to online courses as the other platforms listed above. For instance, if you want a way to add in-built interactive quizzes and assignments, Kartra doesn’t really do a good job of that compared to something like Kajabi.
Nonetheless, it is still great for your online course website as you still get to reap the benefits of the other Kartra features. In particular, the marketing automation features and customization which I find are seriously lacking on platforms like Teachable, etc.
It has a helpdesk feature built-in
Kartra also has a helpdesk feature which can be great to chat with your prospective customers and clients.
The live chat feature can really help boost conversions since you not only answer questions your prospects may have, but the human interaction alone would help a lot in terms of conversions.
After all, people buy from other people.
It also has a ticketing system built in, so if you manage a few teams or departments, the helpdesk can create a ticket with the appropriate department.
It’s not as great or as smart as a chatbot, which seems to be all the rage nowadays, but nevertheless, it is still better than a static site without a live chat feature.
It has advanced analytics so you can see how your business performs at every level
One of the best features of Kartra in my opinion.
You can track almost anything. Sales funnels, email automation, memberships, product analytics, traffic and conversions and so on.
In other words, it can let you know how well your emails performed.
Or how well your sales funnel converts users.
This allows you to make better and more informed decisions so that you gradually refine and increase your conversions and sales over time.
Is Kartra good for SEO?
Kartra does have features built-in that can help optimize for SEO. That means things like H1, H2 tags and on page SEO features.
Having said that, it is a bit of a disappointment in this area to be honest.
Page load speeds are not awesome which is one of the major factors when it comes to SEO. GrooveFunnels tends to do better in this case.
You can still use Kartra for your business, but if you’re planning on blogging, then you would be better off adding a WordPress site and just linking to it from Kartra. WordPress is far better for SEO.
Having said that, Kartra is fairly new (when compared to ClickFunnels), and the team at Kartra are always making improvements. From what I’m aware, they are making improvements to their SEO features.
Why should you use Kartra for your business?
Quite simply, Kartra simplifies everything for you and leaves all the advanced technicalities to someone else so that you don’t need to worry about it.
You can focus more of your time and energy into serving your customers and let Kartra handle all the marketing and selling for you.
Also, using a platform like Kartra allows you to quickly get your business online. This is great if you’re looking to transition your business online.
Here are some of the benefits of using Kartra for your business:
- Your online presence is built for the future. All the technicalities are handled by the team at Kartra. They will help to ensure your website is optimized for SEO and loads as fast as possible so that you don’t need to think about it. For any advancements made in the world of SEO, you will immediately be able to leverage and reap the benefits.
- You save a whole heap in terms of costs. Their cheapest plan starts at $99/month which seems expensive at first. But bear in mind that you won’t need any other integration (like MailChimp, ClickFunnels or ZenDesk). You actually end up saving thousands for all the unlimited features you will be getting.
- Kartra has so many different features that help make it stand out. With advanced features like the calendar system, advanced email automation, memberships and funnels, your business will look and behave like a premium business and instantly gain the trust of any potential client. To them, it will look like your website was built by a high-end development team. Not only will you gain the trust of potential clients, but also Google. Your business will stand a chance of being ranked highly in search engines.
- A unique and beautiful looking website. Your website can be customized to look however you want and it won’t have that look as if it was built by a free website builder. Another trust gaining factor for your potential clients. It’s much easier to customize your website to make it truly unique and yours.
- Easier management. You can see analytics and information about your leads easily. There are many reports available for you to make informed decisions which can help to grow and potentially explode your online business. You don’t need developers to get involved. You can easily manage the website all on your own, even if you are running your business single-handedly.
Kartra Pricing Explained
Kartra has 4 different pricing levels.
All of them come with a 30 day money-back guarantee, so that you can try it out and see if it’s a good fit for you before deciding whether you should commit with it.
The 4 pricing levels are:
- Starter: It gives you 1 domain and has capped limits on how many pages, videos, products and membership sites you can build. It also caps a limit to 2500 leads that you can manage. You can also allow 1 extra team member to join. This is a great option if you’re just getting started. The pricing works out to be $99/month. The annual plan would be cheaper which works out to be $79/month.
- Silver: It gives you 3 domains and no limits to how many pages, videos, products and membership sites you can create. It does have a limit of upto 12,500 leads that you can manage. There are no limits on how many team members can join though.
The price you would pay is $199/month.
- Gold: You also get unlimited everything as well as 5 domains and upto 25,000 leads. The pricing for this is $299/month.
- Platinum: This is double that of the Gold membership. You get 10 domains, 50,000 leads and unlimited everything else. The pricing for this works out to be $499/month.
With the Silver, Gold and Platinum membership, you also get Kartra Agency. This allows you to manage other people’s Kartra accounts so that you can provide reporting for other people as a service or build funnels and pages as a contractor. This can be a pretty neat way to build another revenue stream.
Is Kartra worth it in 2021?
In 2021, I would say Kartra is still worth it. It looks like it’s going to be that way for the next few years.
There are so many different Kartra lookalikes and alternatives nowadays. However, they haven’t been around as long as Kartra and wouldn’t have the amount of functionalities and features as Kartra. Also, since Kartra has been around for a while, the toolset is a lot more matured and stable compared to the newer tools on the market.
You might think that a toolset with so many features would be a little convoluted and overwhelming. All of Kartra’s features work well and complement each other, rather than get in the way. For instance, you can set up a sales funnel, combine it with BAM and email marketing, while at the same time track your leads scores to see how you can further improve to really skyrocket your conversions and sales.
Who is Kartra NOT for?
Kartra would not be suitable for businesses that are starting out. If you are just starting out, a one-man (or woman) show, and also not making at least $1000/month, then Kartra probably isn’t for you (yet). You would be wasting money each month on a business which hasn’t really got off the ground yet. At this point, even the entry level pricing of $97/month would be considered too much as you likely won’t be using many other paid tools anyway.
If you’re primarily only doing online courses, then something like Podia or Kajabi might be a better fit for what you do. Perhaps if you’re able to grow your online course sales to a certain point, you might then want to upgrade to Kartra.
I would also not recommend Kartra for enterprise level businesses where there might be over 200 employees. A business of that size would do better with enterprise-grade solutions. Kartra does have an enterprise plan but I doubt there are many people on this plan.
I would definitely recommend Kartra to almost any business owner.
The ability to be able to manage multiple parts of your business all in one platform and at the same time saving a ton in costs as you don’t need a whole bunch of software and tools to manage, definitely makes Kartra a must-have for any serious business.
If you’re on-the-fence or really not sure whether Kartra is the right fit for you, I would definitely take advantage of the trial first.
The trial is for 7 days but it gives you ample amount of time to get used to the platform and build up a functional site. If you have a bit of technical know-how, you could get a site up and running within a few hours.
If you aren’t happy with Kartra or just find the whole thing a bit of a hassle, you can cancel within the 7 days. Actually, Kartra has a full 30 day money-back guarantee. This is available after making the payment though. So if you don’t mind paying to try out the tool, then 30 days would give you more than enough time to try out and build something amazing for yourself.
Hope you enjoyed my Kartra review 2021 edition and be sure to sign up to my newsletter if you’d like to see more content from me related to digital marketing.