Do you know that feeling you get when you switch between your 17 different tools for attracting customers? Kartra customers describe this as holding your business together with duct tape. Kartra agrees and claims to be the solution for all of it.
However, other companies have claimed the same title. After all, saying “you’ll need nothing else” is a great way to drive your sales. So, is Kartra truly the all-in-one experience that will let you throw out half of your tools? Let’s find out with a deep dive.
What is Kartra?
Kartra is an all-in-one marketing platform by Genesis Digital, a company founded back in 2013. The alpha version of Katra was created in 2016, eventually going live two years later. The software is now in “gold” status, meaning it’s considered fully released.
Its relative newness spurred into success because of its founding by Andy Jenkins and Mike Filsaime. Mike Filsaime is known for his unique marketing techniques. The founder moved on to found a competing platform: GrooveFunnels.
Kartra also has the backing of Frank Kern, a well-known direct-response marketing specialist. So, there are some big names behind this page-building tool.
Genesis Digital is also known for its alternative products: WebinarJam and EverWebinar. The two platforms focus on creating and managing webinars. Ultimately, the two software pieces can work together.
The company supports over 100 staff members and has served over 270 thousand customers. Their mission is to supply world-class business solutions and tools that let people turn their passion into profit. On paper, this sounds like something we can get behind.
The 270 thousand-plus customers are spread among three platforms. So, there’s no telling how successful Kartra is from this page. We need to do a bit more digging to find out.
Who is Kartra best for?
Kartra is best for small businesses to large enterprises that want to scale the marketing efforts of their business. Kartra is truly an all-in-one solution for website and funnel building.
Karta is handy for marketing agencies who develop content for clients. The Kartra Agency package comes with the Silver Plan and higher, which lets you resell your products.
The only weakness is that you need a large budget to justify these costs. Kartra is one of the more expensive providers, making alternatives like GrooveFunnels more appealing.
Kartra Pros and Cons
|30-Day Money Back Guarantee
|“Free” Trial Hidden Behind Site Activity
|Universal Features Across All Plans
|Generally Expensive for Solopreneurs
|Program Somewhat Sluggish
|Simple Product Creation Process
|Must Confirm Leads Before Testing
|Create Custom CRM Data-Gathering Tools
|Grid Based Editor (Limiting)
|Difficulty Linking Pages
|Templates for Sections
|Membership Builder Lacks Features
|Page Building Tools Straightforward
|Difficulty Creating Ecom Store
|Add Chat Bot to Pages
|Cancellation Requires 10-Day Notice
|Create Online Courses
Kartra Pricing & Plans
What you pay for Kartra starts at an average price when looking at other all-in-one platforms. However, you do end up paying more than some pure page builders. So, you’ll want an established marketing plan before investing in Kartra to get your money back.
Kartra’s free trial system is somewhat annoying as well. If you sign up for a year upfront, you can try the platform for 14 days for $1. This gives you less time than the average trial.
However, Kartra does offer a 30-day free trial on its website. You just need to find it. To dig up this 30-day trial, you must dig around the site a bit. From there, you’ll get a popup offering the trial:
Kartra will only offer this trial if it thinks you are having second thoughts. So, dink around the site for a few minutes and pretend you are about to leave. You’ll notice that Kartra’s popups respond to your mouse movements.
Even if you decide to pay, Kartra offers a 30-day money-back guarantee with its plans. So, if you think the software doesn’t work for you after a month, you can get your money back.
Once you take advantage of the free trial, you can test these features. After the trial, you can choose between one of four plans.
Below is a breakdown of your four systems.
The Kartra Starter Plan
The cheapest plan you get is the Starter Plan. It starts at $99 per month but offers $79 per month if you pay for an annual plan.
Here’s a breakdown of what you get with this starting plan:
- Up to 2,500 leads, 15,000 emails, and 1one custom domain
- 50 GB of bandwidth
- Supports up to 100 pages, 50 videos, and 20 products.
- Two membership sites
- One team member and one helpdesk
The Kartra Silver Plan
The Silver Plan costs $199 monthly ($149 for an annual subscription). Its most significant selling point is the quick jump to the number of unlimited allowances. Below is a breakdown of what comes with the new plan:
- Up to 12,500 leads
- Up to three custom domains
- Unlimited emails, bandwidth, pages, videos, products, membership sites, team members, and helpdesk accounts.
- Access to Kartra Agency
The agency plan lets you sublease different parts of your account, segmenting it into different marketing teams. This feature enables you to create multiple client projects under one account. So, Kartra Silver is an excellent way for marketing agencies to build pages.
You can also choose to split the bill between you and fellow marketers. This way, both of you guys can share the burden of payment. This gives you access to more leads while only paying half the cost. Like moving into a new apartment with your friend, make sure the other person is someone you trust.
The Kartra Gold Plan
The Gold Plan costs $299 per month ($229 per month on the annual plan). You get everything under the Silver Plan. The only difference is more leads (25 thousand) and domains (five).
The Kartra Platinum Plan
The Platinum Plan is the most expensive of the group, costing $499 per month ($379 per month if billed yearly). Much like the Gold plan, your only benefit to paying for this plan is more leads (50 thousand) and more domains (10).
For one level beyond this, contact their customer support team and ask for Kartra Enterprise.
Kartra’s cancellation policy
Despite offering some fairly reasonable plans, Kartra’s cancellation policy is dumb. It requires a 10-day notice to cancel any upcoming bills. So that 14-day trial you thought you had is actually a four-day trial.
The 30-day money-back guarantee does mean you can get that money back. However, Kartra might want to reconsider that billing policy. Thankfully, if you dink around the website long enough, you can turn it into a 20-day trial (which is actually the 30-day trial). Just wait for the popup offering the trial to show up.
Creating your Kartra account
When creating your Kartra account, you’ll be asked a series of short questions. You’ll also need to provide a payment card.
It immediately asks about your password, public domain nickname, and currency preferences. You’ll also get a few questions about your business.
Throughout this process, Kartra will also try its hand at an upsell. At this point, you’ll probably have realized the company loves its popups. After all, you can find one on almost every screen.
The expert support program lets you get direct guidance from a success manager for 21 days. We won’t be grading this plan, as it draws away from some of our ease of use scores.
In viewing the cloud software with less guidance, we can judge it fairly.
What does Kartra include?
The Kartra starter plan lets you test out all of the program features. You’ll find out quickly as you use the platform that Kartra likes hearing its own name. Because of this, all the features you see start with their brand.
Here’s a breakdown of what they include:
- Kartra Checkouts – An entire product suite that amounts to a dedicated shopping cart software. You can use this to create checkouts, manage payments, and encourage digital and physical product sales.
- Kartra Funnels & Campaigns – A full campaign manager that includes categorization through tags, automated features, pages, and membership sites. It’s a way to visualize and automate your marketing process.
- Kartra Surveys & Quizzes – A system for asking questions and surveys to your customers for data gathering or course-building purposes.
- Kartra Pages – Kartra’s page-building software.
- Kartra Mail – Kartra’s email broadcast and automation service.
- Kartra Videos – A video storage system that will provide you with analytical information on how your videos contribute to lead capture. It also helps optimize your videos for mobile viewing. It also works as a video content management system across all your websites.
- Kartra Leads – A general term for all the lead generation software.
- Kartra Memberships – Kartra will let you build anywhere from one to unlimited membership sites. Kartra Membership will also help you manage site members for you, removing the need for third-party integrations.
- Kartra Helpdesks – A way to provide live chat features to your website visitors for support.
- Kartra Forms – General form creation tools.
- Kartra Affiliate Management – A way to manage your affiliate program.
- Kartra Calendars – A way to manage your appointments and schedule. You can use this for both free consultations and paid services.
- Kartra Agency (only with Kartra Silver and up) – A way to sort your projects by creating multiple client-facing accounts. This way, you can create and share complete projects.
- Kartra Marketplace – A way to resell your marketing funnels and designs to fellow Kartra users.
Going through the Kartra checklist (tutorial)
You’ll first be asked to watch a few videos when you get through the account creation process. The first video is your generic “congratulations” video, while the second video draws attention to their built-in checklist.
This checklist is a tutorial to bring you through the entire process, helping you understand what each system means. It also reveals that Kartra’s system works in stages, meaning you must complete one aspect of your marketing funnel to go through another. As a result, the Checklist provides you with a great built-in tutorial.
You’ll see the Katranaut training portal (also known as Kartra Academy) and the ability to hire an expert on this page. So, there’s plenty to learn from.
Granting your team access
If you run a small business, your first step is creating accounts for team members. You can find this setting in the upper-right corner under the silhouette drop-down menu.
Before creating a member account, you must create a team role for them. The role settings dictate the access they have to different areas. For example, if you have a video editor on your staff, you might not need them to access your surveys.
The level of control here is excellent, breaking things down into the different products you can use. Creating a team is pretty simple.
Once you create a role, you can create a member and assign them to that role. From this page, you create a Kartra account for them, giving them credentials from which to log in. You email these credentials to your user once finished.
Products and payment gateways
When going through the tutorial, one of the first things you will do is set up your products. You’ll need these to access later sections of Kartra.
Payment gateway creation
First, you’ll want to go to the integrations screen to connect your payment gateway, which you can find under “my integrations.” Once this page is loaded, you’ll see a wide range of integrations available, which you can sort by type.
You’ll want to click the drop-down menu to sort by payment integrations in the upper-right corner. This gives you a list of payment providers they work with.
These include your standard providers (PayPal, Stripe, and Square) and a few weird ones (Authorize and Braintree). If you are a Solopreneur without a business, you can use Strip to overcome PayPal’s need for a business account.
Creating your first product
Once you connect a payment account, you can move on and create a new product. To get started, you need to choose between the main product or an upsell product. Selecting these different types of products will determine where they appear on your sales funnels.
After selecting the product type, you’ll be brought to a page to complete some basic details.
After you get to this page, you’ll need to go through seven different screens to complete the product:
- Basic info – This page has you provide the product title, description, and payment gateway connected. It also lets you decide whether to add it to the affiliate marketplace.
- Pricing – This page lets you control how customers pay for the product. You can set up payments for one-time, recurring, or multiple installments. You can also give the customer multiple payment options and provide data on the shipping cost and sales tax (or set it up as a digital product).
- Pages – This page lets you provide URLs for both the product and thank you pages.
- Checkout – This lets you change the appearance of the checkout page. You can choose the logos and if it’s Kartra hosted or hosted externally. You can add entry fields, bump offers, and terms and conditions.
- Post sale – This page lets you decide what happens after the sale. You can add them to email lists, give them access to Kartra (or third-party) membership, or send them a downloadable file. You can also choose “no access” if you sell physical products.
- Affiliates – This page lets you create an affiliate program for your products. Those who promote it will receive a fixed amount of your sale. You can set your commission rates and have different commission tiers. You can also create an affiliate opt-in form to recruit new sellers.
When you go through all sections, your product is officially made. They will provide you with an HTML code you can paste on your product’s landing page.
The product creation process is straightforward. This is a refined version of what they offer through GrooveFunnels. Given that the two have related founders, it’s no surprise to see these similarities.
Creating your lead capture system
If you are still following the checklist, the next step in the tutorial is creating a lead capture page. This is broken down into making a list, a form, and a page. Below is a breakdown of how those systems look.
Creating your first contact list on Kartra Leads
Under “my communications,” you’ll see a link that leads you to create a contact list. Once you make the list, you can choose between two ways to populate it: importing leads or creating an opt-in form.
The import settings let you add leads manually or use a CSV or TXT file to add those leads. Either way, the system works by asking you to add one lead per line, with each field separated by a comma.
Eventually, when you add your first leads, you’ll get the idea that you can make these fields completely custom. You must ensure that the data you see is in the same order. Here’s an example of what you’ll see after importing the text:
After getting them imported, you can choose the purpose of your contact list. You can assign tags, add them to email newsletters, or connect them to automated email chains. You can also connect with a third-party customer relationship manager (CRM).
Importing your leads raises some critical issues I have with the product. Namely, you need to confirm your leads by telling Kartra how you got them, where you got them from, and verify the source.
When you want to use this marketing software, you must confirm your leads for a third-party tool. This is tedious and annoying. Other email marketing tools leave the task of proving leads up to you, which is how it should be.
Creating an opt-in form with the form builder
The opt-in form lets you gather customer data for later use. This can be used to add them to newsletters, get them signed up for webinars, or advertise your products.
Much like product creation, you can make your forms from four pages:
- Form fields – This lets you add and modify your different form fields (name, email, address, etc.)
- Confirmation – This page offers a choice between single or double-opt-ins (members need to confirm their email before you add them under the “double” option) and inserting the URL for a successful signup page.
- Welcome – This lets you send welcome emails, SMS texts, or nothing.
- Automation – This page lets you connect automation features (adding to newsletters, tagging customers, etc.)
- Form design – This lets you choose whether the form will appear on Kartra or a third-party page.
Once you are finished, the form will be available on Kartra pages, our next stop.
Using the page-building software
The last part of this tutorial takes you to the “my pages” section on the far-left navigation bar. This section lets you use your email lists and forms by creating beautiful landing pages to display them.
Looking at the Kartra templates
Much like other landing page builders, the page builder provides you with various landing page templates. These templates are broken down by use and include everything from squeeze pages to coming soon pages.
These also aren’t just limited to funnel templates, as you can build a complete website using Kartra. For our uses, we’ll select a squeeze page to use the forms we made earlier.
Navigating your page builder
The page-building tool is professional looking. From a general look, you can already see the ability to see desktop, tablet, and mobile views. You also have the option to show columns and adjust your autosave settings.
The top-middle of the bar lets you switch between column and component mode. You’ll need to switch between these modes to adjust those respective areas. Columns are the areas in which your components (like the text or videos) are contained.
The left-hand side includes most of your settings:
- Sites – This lets you assign your page to a specific website, collecting them under the same custom domain.
- Settings – This lets you add tracking codes, SEO parameters (meta title, description, etc.), site tags (if you want to group them using your sorting system), and page redirects.
- Styles – This section lets you control the page width, background color (or image), font details, and custom CSS styles.
- Sections – This lets you see different pre-made block templates. These are great for inserting opt-in forms, countdowns, checkout forms, and other pre-made designs that include page components.
- Components – These are smaller elements you can insert inside the columns and rows of your sections. Text, buttons, accordions, and headlines are all examples here.
- Popups – This lets you create landing popup windows to increase conversion rates.
- Alert bar – This area lets you create alert bars, which are forms of popups that appear on the top or bottom of your screen.
- Helpdesk – It lets you display a live chat feature to help your site visitors. You get unlimited helpdesk portals with higher-tier plans.
- Your code – lets you add custom HTML within blocks to your website. You’ll need to use this to insert some Kartra features.
What makes Kartra unique is its focus on pre-made page components. Rather than have unstyled options, it has various styles and design choices that you can tweak after. This means you can use Kartra as a way to plug pre-made designs with little effort.
Adding components to your page and editing them
Much like the majority of page-building software out there, you get a simple drag-and-drop editor. The editor is based on a grid format sorted into various rows and columns. Some customization options suffer because you don’t get a freeform editor.
Despite not getting a freeform builder, the number of templates lets you make a unique website. With enough effort, you can make an impressive sales funnel.
The odd feature here is the need to switch between components and columns. Needing to click another button to narrow your selection slows you down. But the tool can be handy in removing situations where you might click a column when you intend to click a component. A third “why not both” option would be appreciated.
When you hover over page components or columns, you are given the option to move them, edit their style, clone them, or delete them. There is a wide range of options on the style that include everything from individual text elements to padding. You can even choose to add animation, making for more dynamic content.
For more advanced elements (like adding your form from earlier), click on the on-screen form, select your form from the list, and save it. From here, you don’t add new data collection elements, you can only change the styles of your form. Because you’ve already done the groundwork, page building is elementary.
Once you are done, you can use the actions menu to move to the next stage. You’ll need to publish it so you can continue the tutorial.
Creating an entire website on Kartra
Kartra lets you complete full websites using the page builder. Websites, in a sense, are just groups of pages. By creating multiple types of pages, you can create a complete website.
To create a website, you’ll need to click the new site button in the bottom-left of the “my pages tab.” From there, you can choose to create new pages under this site and move old pages as well.
The site-building tool is one of the more problematic areas of Kartra. Despite being able to link similar projects, linking the pages to each other is a nightmare. While global elements make this easier, other site builders are better at automatically generating your site headers that link between pages. On Kartra, you have to create these headers manually.
Split testing using Kartra
Split testing isn’t part of the tutorial but is incredibly important for building a site. As an understated feature, the A/B testing is pretty simple.
You can use the builder to choose between testing one to four versions of the same page. With this, you can create multiple pages with minor tweaks, seeing which works better.
My only issue with this feature is that it doesn’t automatically create a variant of the page you are using. So, you’ll have to make the pages manually and add them later rather than have it integrated into one process.
There’s nothing too unique here, but some page builders need to remember this is a big part of your process. Overall, this feature’s data tracking and usefulness cannot be understated. It’s part of the whole Kartra analytics package.
Creating a membership site with Kartra
The “my memberships” tab lets you create a membership and a portal for your membership. This allows you to make details of your membership, including the content.
Your first stop will likely be the membership builder, which is a tweaked form of the other site builder. Because it’s for building membership sites, things need to be more straightforward.
Adding elements and site content is pretty simple. However, Kartra has ripped any sense of originality from this course builder. The customization is gone in favor of a more straightforward interface.
The membership site builder seems to be built around course creation, similar to Kajabi. However, because it lacks the backend view, it’s a bit harder to grasp for beginners. You’ll have to think about your approach before you start, which makes it more difficult than alternatives.
Much like everything, the remaining sections of the membership site builder let you control access levels, send welcome messages, and connect your marketing automation.
Survey creation for marketing data and testing
The survey creator also has its own building system. The building system lets you establish an intro cover, add questions, state that the survey will be anonymous, and set success conditions (if your survey is a graded quiz).
Surveys are ideal for testing student knowledge (building a membership site) and gathering marketing data. Once you create them, you can go back to your membership sites and add them.
The type of surveys you can include are only text, text and image, and text and video. Among these are multiple types: multiple-choice, text answers, image answers, binary answers (yes or no), and rating scores (from one to five).
Campaign creation and marketing automation software
Scrolling down a bit reveals the campaign creation tool. This is where the all-in-one marketing solution thing comes into play. Kartra reminds you that all the elements from your campaign must be included. This includes your surveys, automated features, pages, entire websites, products, membership portals, videos, and anything else.
In the “my campaigns” section itself, it’s virtually nothing. Instead, it goes back to how you use the other parts of your campaign. So, we’ll need to go back through some sections to discuss how to create an email marketing campaign and use automated features.
Using this email marketing software
You’ll find multiple locations with the automation tab on them. To populate these sections, you must return to “my communications” up top to access your sequences, broadcasts, and automations.
We will start with the simplest form: broadcasts. This email marketing tool sends an email to everyone in a category. This can include everyone, people on specific lists, or those who have filled out specific forms.
The other two systems are a bit more complex.
The sequence builder and automation builder
Sequences are how email marketing companies create processes for what happens when a customer does things. In our case, we’ve built an opt-in form, so we may want to send our new customers an email thanking them for their time.
The sequence builder lets you do this and get a visual representation of what that means. Because it’s a visual builder, it’s easy to see how things will come out.
We could easily write another two thousand words on what this does. So, to keep things simple, we will say this: it works, and it’s effortless to use. The only complaint comes back to the number of sending options you have, which are a bit overwhelming.
Kartra could stand to include some default templates with their system. This way, they could help new email markers understand what these things do. But, with a bit of tweaking, you’ll get it.
If you are looking for a similar and simpler email marketing alternative, check out our Sendinblue review.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Kartra is designed to be user-friendly and intuitive, with a simple interface and drag-and-drop page builder. While there may be a learning curve for some of the more advanced features, the platform is generally considered easy to use for most users, including those without technical experience. Additionally, Kartra provides customer support and a knowledge base with articles and tutorials to assist users in getting started.
Kartra and Kajabi are both all-in-one marketing and sales platforms, but there are some differences between the two. Kartra has more emphasis on sales funnels and affiliate management, and provides features such as email marketing, membership sites, and helpdesks.
Kajabi, on the other hand, focuses more on creating and delivering digital products and courses, with features such as course creation tools, assessments, and quizzes.
Overall, both platforms offer a range of features for managing an online business, but the emphasis is slightly different, depending on the needs of the business.
Yes, Kartra offers a sales funnel builder that allows businesses to sell products online and manage their orders, payments, and customer information.
Yes, Kartra offers integrations with a variety of popular business tools, including Zapier, WordPress, and more.
Wrap-up – is Kartra worth your money?
Is Kartra worth your money? That answer depends on what you are looking for.
One thing we can say: Kartra is the better version of GrooveFunnels. It’s likely what GrooveFunnels will look like in a few years. Much of this comes from the differences in development time. The difference is that Kartra doesn’t have a lifetime plan, which might make GrooveFunnels a better value from a long-term perspective.
Regarding everything else, Kartra has a lot of different systems that integrate reasonably well. There are some unusual quirks in some of these systems. Its most significant potential improvement comes from the membership site builder, which could emulate something closer to Kajabi. The membership builder isn’t a total loss, but it does lack some user-friendliness.
The areas we didn’t look at (Kartra Video, calendars, etc.) are also worth digging into. But Kartra is just too big for its own good. Regardless, it is one of the best all-in-one marketing solutions you can get for your money.