Best Automation Tool: ClickFunnels vs. ActiveCampaign

While ClickFunnels and ActiveCampaign have some common features, they’re built for different functions, and stages of your sales funnel—more on that later.

ActiveCampaign was created to help you nurture your relationship with your audience or customers.

ClickFunnels helps you generate more leads, sales, as well as help you build a meaningful connection with your audience.

As you can see, one is a dedicated email marketing tool while the other double-ups on that feature and then some.

The First and Second Sales Funnels

Sales funnels are the hottest trend right now, and with good reason; they can do wonders for your ROI. In case you don’t already know what all the hype is about sales funnel, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

A sales funnel is a marketing concept whereby you take your web visitors through an ordered sequence of steps designed to get them to take whatever action you want. 

It could be to sign up to your newsletter or buy your products or services.

sales funnel illustration

Like your typical funnel, a sales funnel starts out wide at the top but gradually narrows down to the bottom. It’s a simple analogy of the sales process for both online and offline business.


The top of the funnel (TOTF) represents the number of visitors your business generates from your marketing and advertising campaigns.

As the visitors go through your sales funnel, only a small percentage will make it to the middle of the funnel (MOTF), and even fewer make it to the bottom of the funnel (BOTF).

The number of stages in between may vary for each business, but that’s typically what the first funnel looks like.Once your prospect to sign up or buy from you, they’ve successfully gone through the first funnel.

The Second Funnel

Now if you were to leave it at that, then you’d be leaving a lot of money on the table, and that’s where the second funnel comes in. The second funnel is an invisible funnel that runs on the backend and is also referred to as the follow-up funnel.

email icon

With a follow-up funnel, you’ll be able to send highly personalized email sequences to your customers or audience, nurture your relationship with them and turn them into paying customers.

The first funnel or the frontend funnel is usually a loss leader,or if you’re lucky, you may make some profit.

The goal is to get your visitors into your second funnel where you can remarket to them for pennies on the dollar and generate a consistent source of traffic and repeat business.

All caught up? Great, now we get into the meat and potatoes of our ClickFunnels vs. ActiveCampaign review.

Overview of ClickFunnels Vs. ActiveCampaign

At its core, ClickFunnels is a dedicated website and sales funnel builder. Marketing automation is its bread and butter, and it offers plenty of features to help you grow and scale your business online.

ClickFunnels is the brainchild of one Russell Brunson, a marketing mad scientist who has once made $3 million in 90 minutes at a public speaking event. It was built for both the beginner and the advanced marketer and let you easily deploy sales funnels in a couple of clicks.

It features an advanced but intuitive drag-and-drop landing page builder—Etison editor, that gives you plenty of customization options.

ClickFunnels let you build every type of funnel you can think of and comes with a variety of professionally designed and conversion-optimized sales funnel templates to help you succeed.

ActiveCampaign, on the other hand, is a dedicated email marketing tool that gives you plenty of automations to grow your business.

It combines a flexible CRM with a reliable auto-responder to help you cultivate your audience completely on auto-pilot.

It’s worth noting ClickFunnels does come with its email marketing automation features otherwise known as Actionetics—we’ll get into it below. You’ll also get Backpack—their trademarked membership application, as well as a variety of other sales funnels features.


It’s a sales funnel and website builder that integrates a variety of tools to help you get rid of all your other marketing automation tools. If you’re searching for a truly all-in-one solution to automate your campaigns, then you couldn’t be better served by ClickFunnels.

Etison Editor

ClickFunnels features a trademarked landing page builder they call Etison. It’s a highly intuitive drag-n-drop editor that let you create beautiful pages in a matter of minutes.

It comes with plenty of page elements to choose from that are highly customizable so that you can maintain your brand’s image.

Etison editor gives you full control over your pages, allowing you to adjust the padding on-page elements, the color, font styling as well as add custom CSS to your pages.

And we’re only scratching the surface, ClickFunnels comes with a unique color-coded wireframe to build your landing page layout. You have the freedom to unleash your creative side while setting you up for success with their scientifically proven to convert landing page templates.

Sales Funnel builder

Building sales funnels couldn’t be easier thanks to ClickFunnels drag and drop funnel builder.

To get started building your first funnel simply choose your goal, pick out a template, edit it and you’re ready to publish.

You’ll be able to choose from over 22 different types of sales funnels that have been tried, tested, and proven to convert. Did we mention that ClickFunnels and their professionally designed templates have been used to generate over a billion dollars in revenue?

There are three main reasons why people build sales funnels: to get more leads, increase sales, or host a webinar. ClickFunnels comes with a variety of funnels designed to increase your ROI from squeeze-page funnels to evergreen webinar funnels to product launch funnel etc.

Whatever it is or you’re trying to build or sell online, ClickFunnels gives you the tools you need to succeed.

It’s an all-in-one digital marketing platform designed and built for entrepreneurs, and it’s not just good for building your front end funnel, it also does wonders for your second funnel as well.


Actionetics is ClickFunnels’ trademarked email marketing automation tool designed to help you cultivate your subscribers to become paying customers.

Actionetics isn’t your average email auto-responder, but a multi-dimensional follow-up tool that lets you communicate with your customers or list wherever they are online or offline.

Whether it’s email, text, desktop notification, or messenger; you can rely on ClickFunnels to deliver your message.

And let’s not forget Actionetics smart lists that help you segment your audience depending on a variety of things like who they are, their purchase history, etc.


Backpack is ClickFunnels’ trademarked affiliate tool that let you create and attach affiliate programs to either of your funnels.

The good thing about affiliate programs is that it’s a risk-free approach to selling your products or services.

With an affiliate program, you only pay for results, so the hassle of marketing and advertising is left to your affiliates. You can kick your feet up, relax, and watch the money roll in as your affiliates do all the heavylifting for you.


ActiveCampaign has become a household name when it comes to email automation and is being used by more than seventy thousand businesses.

It helps you cultivate your relationship with your audiences and engage with them in a meaningful way.

Email Marketing

ActiveCampaign email marketing features let you quickly build out your email marketing campaigns without any design or coding experience.

email marketing icon

It features an intuitive drag-and-drop email creator that let you build gorgeous looking email sequences in a matter of minutes.

You can segment your audience on whatever lead capture form they use to help you personalize your messages. ActiveCampaign also comes with over 25 professionally designed email templates that are fully customizable so you can maintain your brand’s image.

You can collaborate with your team members to create high-converting email sequences without stepping on anyone’s toes.

Don’t like how your template has turned out?

Don’t worry, ActiveCampaign saves all of your edits so you can easily revert to an earlier version. All of their templates come optimized for mobile and with managed deliverability, rest assured your messages will reach your contacts’ inbox.

And let’s not forget the infamous dynamic text replacement that ActiveCampaign readily supports. You can show the right message to the right subscriber depending on how you’ve segmented your list.

ActiveCampaign’s dynamic content lets you automatically change your CTAs to suit your audience based on a variety of predefined parameters such as purchase history, geographical location, and more.

Marketing Automation

For you to be able to scale your business online, you need to automate your processes and ActiveCampaign gives you the necessary tools to do just that.

illustration of automation workflow

It takes care of the mundane tasks such as thanking your subscribers for signing up and frees up time to focus on what’s important; growing your business.

You get an intuitive drag-n-drop automation planner that lets you quickly set up your workflows in just a couple of clicks.

And it gets better, with ActiveCampaign goal tracking feature you’ll be able to watch how each step of your second funnel performs, track conversions and segment users who’ve completed your funnel.

The Verdict of ClickFunnels vs. ActiveCampaign

ClickFunnels is renowned for its sales funnel building features and gives you plenty of tools to help you succeed online.

The great thing about ClickFunnels is that integrates all the necessary marketing tools into one platform, making it a suitable choice for entrepreneurs and small business owners. It helps you build incredible front-end sales funnel campaigns and helps you nurture your leads.

ActiveCampaign, on the other hand, specializes in the second funnel, i.e. the follow-up funnel.

It comes with plenty of features such as goal tracking, machine learning, site, and event tracking, etc. to help you succeed with your email marketing campaigns.

If you’re a small business owner or entrepreneur looking to grow or start your business online, then ClickFunnels is the best platform to help you succeed.

Once you’ve got a steady stream of leads or sales, then you can integrate ActiveCampaign and improve the follow-up funnel.

Disclaimer: Thank you for reading this article and I hope you got some value from it. I just want to make you aware that some of the links on this website are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally use and believe will add value to my readers.