Kartra vs Kajabi: Which has the edge?Aug 15, 2022
It can be difficult to choose tools for your business, given that there are so many options out there. Most claim to save you time and money, but do they really? How can you know for sure?
You might just be looking for a way to sell your online course but I find that having a holistic platform can save you both time and money. Today I will be talking about two tools, Kartra and Kajabi, that approach business building in a holistic way. Both feature seamless integrations, which makes for an easy-to-use, convenient business tool—eliminating the need to go back and forth between many different services. Because they are also comprehensive, you don’t have to pay to add on additional services.
While the platforms share many similarities, they do have some key differences, so we’ll be putting them head to head. Let’s dive into this Kartra vs Kajabi review.
Our Verdict on Kartra vs. Kajabi:
Kartra is best for professionals who:
Sell online courses and other digital content.
Need advanced marketing tools, including video and sms marketing.
Build sales funnel templates and sell them to other Karta users.
Need an integrated Helpdesk for interacting with customers.
Want to offer more payment options to customers.
Need appointment setting and calendar functionality.
Kajabi is for professionals who:
Sell online courses and other digital content.
Want to offer a mobile app to their customers.
Use a blog or podcast.
Want advanced automations.
Want a simpler but still clean-cut tool.
Want a better user experience.
Need platform support for business building.
Are looking for the best prices.
Points to Consider and Compare in Kartra vs. Kajabi
Kartra vs Kajabi: Pricing
Price is one of the first things online entrepreneurs look at, so I’ve listed that here first. Neither platform has a free offering—but they do both offer a 14-day trial. Kajabi’s trial is completely free, but Kartra’s costs $1. Let’s now take a look at how the plan offerings stack up!
First of all, there are 4 Kartra pricing tiers and 3 Kajabi pricing tiers. Neither platforms charge transaction fees.
Kartra Starter: $99/month
Kartra Silver: $199/month; Kajabi Basic: $149/month
Kartra Gold: $229/month; Kajabi Growth: $199/month
Kartra Platinum: $499/month; Kajabi Pro: $399/month
Kajabi Access add-on: $99/month
Pricing when billed annually
Kartra Starter: $79/month
Kartra Silver: $149/month; Kajabi Basic: $119/month
Kartra Gold: $229/month; Kajabi Growth: $159/month
Kartra Platinum: $379/month; Kajabi Pro: $319/month
Kajabi Access add-on: $79/month
You’re probably wondering, “But why are you leaving Starter by itself and not comparing it with Basic, as opposed to Silver?” If you look closer at the feature comparisons between the plans, you’ll find that these options rival each other better. Starter is on its own because it doesn’t really have a competitor on the Kajabi side of things.
Checkout this article if you want a full review of Kajabi pricing.
Pricing: Kajabi wins
The bottom line: While Kartra offers a nice low cost plan with their starter plan, I find their leads limit per plan is too low. An online business needs to grow its email list and it won't be hard to out grow the 2,500 lead limit in the starter plan.
Now let’s see how the plans break down into features!
Kartra vs Kajabi: Plans
Kartra offers four plans and Kajabi offers three. We will start off with Kartra’s Starter, since it’s kind of in a category of its own.
Kartra Starter is the only Kartra plan with limitations on the main features, which are sending emails, bandwidth (how much total online activity you can do on the platform at a time), page and video hosting, selling products, creating membership sites, adding team members, and connecting a Helpdesk.
For Starter you can only send 15,000 emails per month, use fifty gigabytes of bandwidth, host one hundred pages and fifty videos, sell twenty products, build two membership sites, add one additional team member, and connect one Helpdesk. This is good deal if you are just starting your online business but you will lose your price advantage over Kajabi when your business grows. As your business grows and you need more email marketing campaigns, you can easily upgrade to the other Kartra plans that have these features without limits.
Beyond the main features, you get up to 2,500 leads and one custom domain. These numbers only go up from there on the other plans. This is the only feature limitation for all plans. Starter also does not include Kartra Agency (essentially a Customer Relation Management or CRM software addon). All other plans do.
Kartra: Silver, Gold, and Platinum
Kartra Silver, Gold, and Platinum all get the main features without limits. This means you can send unlimited emails, use unlimited bandwidth, host unlimited pages and videos, sell unlimited products, create and have unlimited membership sites, add unlimited number of team members, and offer unlimited helpdesks. As mentioned above, they all also include Kartra Agency.
Where the three Kartra plans differ is in the number of leads and custom domains they offer. Silver can have up to 12,500 leads and three domains. With Gold you get up to 25,000 leads and five custom domains, whereas Platinum doubles at 50,000 leads and ten custom domains.
All of the plans have access to add additional domains, emails and bandwidth (designed for Starter), and Integrations and API (ability to code in new custom add-ons). Note that you also have access to Kartra Documentation, a knowledgebase for how to use this API system and integrate with third-party applications. More detail on this can be found here.
On to Kajabi’s plans we go! Since all plans include certain main features, let’s start there.
Kajabi: Similarities between its plans
All plans can create unlimited landing pages and send unlimited marketing emails, get access to Kajabi University, have zero transaction fees—ever—can do webinars and events, have ready-to-use templates, have access to assessments (quizzes and surveys), use automations, can get chat support, and receive one customer success activation call.
All plans also have the ability to purchase Kajabi Access, an add-on that gives you the following:
Six one-on-one sessions with a Kajabi Customer Success Manager to ensure you succeed with Kajabi and in business.
Double the current plan quotas—6 products and pipelines instead of 3, 20,000 contacts instead of 10,000, etc.
Hero Hub Support—office hours where you can get your questions answered by Kajabi Customer Success.
Custom Code Editor—ability to customize your websites through programming.
Kajabi: Differences between its plans
Basic gets 3 products, 3 pipelines, 10,000 contacts, 1,000 active members, one website, one additional admin user and only basic access to chat support and automations.
Growth, on the other hand, gets 15 products, 15 pipelines, 25,000 contacts, 10,000 active members, one website, ten admin users, access to 24/7 chat support and advanced automations, can remove Kajabi branding, and has access to the affiliate program.
Pro gets 100 products, 100 pipelines, 100,000 contacts, 20,000 active members, three websites, twenty-five admin users, access to 24/7 chat support and advanced automations, can remove Kajabi branding, has access to the affiliate program and has access to the code editor.
But let’s just say you chose a plan but then realized the platform you chose was not for you. Is there any guarantee if you’re not satisfied? What if you like your platform, but just want to upgrade your plan? Let’s take a look!
Kartra vs Kajabi: Money-back Guarantee
While both platforms offer refunds, there is a subtle difference here that must be made. Kartra offers you to cancel within thirty days of initial signup (including the free trial), so you get a total of 30 days, regardless of how you start.
Kajabi, on the other hand, offers refunds from the time you are first billed, so if you have a trial, that’s 44 days!
After this initial period, however, neither company offers refunds or prorated credits if you don’t use the plan for a part of a month, or the year if billed annually (so you’re best to decide if you like it first before jumping on an annual commitment). You will have access to the plans through the end of the billing period you last paid for on both platforms. As for upgrading, both platforms allow you the flexibility to upgrade at any time (but keep in mind that there are no refunds or prorated credits for this either.
Kartra vs Kajabi: Use Cases
First of all, Kartra and Kajabi both offer a one-stop-shop or all-in-one approach to business. You can create, market, and sell your products from start to finish on each. That said, the best use case for each is definitely different. Kartra focuses on selling physical and digital products first and course building second, while Kajabi focuses on creating and selling online courses and content almost exclusively. What do I mean?
Kartra’s physical product selling platform is built in. Kajabi does enable you to sell physical products but requires connection to a third party, either embedding Shopify’s buy button or implementing other third-party distribution integrations, i.e. Zapier (see here).
Kartra also focuses heavily on advanced marketing tools to make your business work from the ground up. While Kajabi has quite a bit of marketing tools, they aren’t as advanced as Kartra’s since Kajabi’s priority focus is on creating excellent online courses and membership sites.
Kartra vs Kajabi: Website building
Both Kartra and Kajabi help you build a website through their own proprietary page editors, which offers great customizability and the use of your custom domain. If that sounds a bit overwhelming, though, don’t be concerned. Both Kartra and Kajabi have templates (over 200 in Kartra’s case, not nearly so many for Kajabi) that can help you design stunning web pages for your site. You can start from scratch, if you want to, however, you can also add images, text, call-to-action (CTA) buttons, and really any other type of customization you would like that you can think of.
Kajabi allows you to create a very functional blog section, fully backed with an automatic post index; Kartra does not have this functionality at all. But what Kartra has that Kajabi lacks is an inbuilt Helpdesk (a place where customers can come directly to you via chat) and a knowledge base that helps customers find their own answers. If you want this, you’re going to have to find some third-party to do it and hopefully it can integrate with Kajabi.
Kartra vs Kajabi: Online Courses
Both Kartra and Kajabi offer course builders. As mentioned, however, Kartra’s focus is split into building courses and selling products and thus its course building tool isn’t as good as Kajabi’s dedicated builder.
Kartra’s is also not as easy to use as Kajabi’s, despite having a decent level of customizability. Kajabi's online course platform is easy to learn and use to build and modify your online course. The end user experience is also easy to use and can be designed to look great. Kajabi wins big in this area.
Kartra vs Kajabi: Membership Site
There are a lot of benefits to hosting a membership site, including a steady passive income stream. On both platforms you can monitor and manage both new sign-ups as well as existing members and their progress across your courses. You can send drip content and welcome emails through automation from the platforms as well.
Kartra vs Kajabi: Marketing and Sales Funnels
Emailing is similar on both platforms as they each have standard marketing features. Some are broadcasts you manually send, while others are automated responses that help you build your business and keep customers engaged. Both Kartra and Kajabi provide access to email templates and the ability to custom design your own. You can also segment audiences by different tags of your choosing or other filters.
Kartra has advanced marketing features that Kajabi doesn't, email split testing and sms engagement. This means that you can send two different emails to different customers to see what converts more. If you want to see what is converting, you have to use a more laborious process and use Kajabi Analytics, which is a bit more complex.
Kartra also has a visual sequence builder, which makes things easier. Don’t be disappointed by the lack of this feature with Kajabi, however; Kajabi’s email sequence tool is robust and easy to understand.
It’s important to know who your leads are and where they are in the sales process. They can come from anywhere: prospects, existing customers, affiliates, or people who just know you, friends, family, and more. The more leads you have, the more likely you are to have increased sales and revenue.
Kartra and Kajabi both have professionally designed sales funnels to build your contact list and market your products. These templates are fully customizable and are a good way to see all of the features within the platforms connected together in one area.
In Kartra there is also a market for funnels that professionals share across Kartra and you can purchase these as needed (or sell if you’re a pro and yours convert well).
Both platforms provide you with important details such as who has subscribed, previous purchases, any open tickets through a Helpdesk feature (Kartra only), what emails have been received or read, links they’ve clicked on, memberships they’ve signed up for, and their appointments with you. Kartra automatically scores each of your leads
In all, both have their strengths. Kajabi’s strength is the visual funnel and better lead limits; Kartra’s is the level of customizability (though this could get complex quickly) and better overall lead management features.
Both Kartra and Kajabi offer affiliate marketing programs and ways to manage affiliates who join. You get to screen candidates. You can also specify which products each affiliate can promote, how much their cut is (with more customization on Kartra), and provide them with their affiliate links. Communication with all or select affiliates is fairly simple on both platforms, as is analyzing how well they do.
Where Kartra outshines Kajabi is in advanced features, such as PayPal instant payments with a minimum earning requirement so you only send funds when they’ve reached a certain amount. Taxes are made far simpler through Kartra as well as you can send and collect tax forms easily. Kartra also has an affiliate marketplace, where you can find and recruit affiliates to sell your products or even to become an affiliate yourself.
Kajabi’s affiliate program is only available on the Growth and Pro plans, whereas Kartra offers the affiliate program on all plans, including Starter.
Kartra Bonus: Behavioral Adaptive Marketing (BAM)
Like split-testing, BAM allows you to monitor how your customers and prospects interact with your content and sites, and then make changes to see what converts better for different people.
Kartra vs Kajabi: User Experience
One of the biggest factors to consider is how well your customers will be able to interact with you and how you control the delivery of content in your online course. Both platforms allow you to lock content and drip feed it to your customers. Both platforms have lesson pages, though Kartra’s are more informal and Kajabi’s look more like a traditional classroom experience. Kajabi’s platform even allows your customers to see how they are progressing.
Your user experience as an online instructor also matters. Kartra doesn’t have communities where you and your customers can interact, Kajabi does. With the comment features below each lesson, customers can create their own discussions as well, which can bring in more customers.
Neither platform offers certificates, but with Kajabi, you can create them through third-parties and through automations deliver them based on content completion. Overall, Kajabi’s learning experience is just more polished and efficient than Kartra’s.
Kartra vs Kajabi: Customer Service
Everyone needs to know they can get support when they need it. Your customers will certainly need and require it from you, and you will need and require it from your platform of choice. First, let’s talk about the support you provide.
Customer Service Provided By You
Kartra has an edge here because it offers Helpdesk(s) built into your site off the bat (with Starter you get one; with Silver, Gold and Platinum, you get unlimited Helpdesks). You can also create a knowledge base where customers can get their own answers. Kajabi does not have these features, unless you have a third-party plugin or use programming to add it (and that requires either a Pro plan or the Access add-on).
Now let’s talk about the support you receive from your chosen platform.
Customer Service FOR YOU
Both platforms have live chat support. For Kartra, this is limited to 8 AM - 12 PM Pacific Time and 12 AM - 4 AM Pacific Time, neither of which are really ideal for most users. Kajabi’s chat support, on the other hand, is 24/7 (except for Basic plan users, whose hours are 6 AM - 5 PM Pacific Time; still limited, but far better than Kartra’s offering). If live chat doesn’t work for you, you can send an email with both platforms. Kartra’s response time can be 24+ hours, however. Kajabi offers webinars on weekdays where you can get help as well.
If you’re more the “self-help” type, both platforms offer training through Kartraverse or Kajabi University. In these there are plenty of tutorials and videos that can help you find just what you need. If you don’t find something there, you can connect with other Kajabi users on the official Kajabi Facebook community, another refreshing option beyond chat.
Kartra vs Kajabi: Video Content Features and Hosting
Since the majority of your content for your online courses will be videos, the feature offerings each of these platforms is important.
Kartra does an outstanding job for video marketing. Not only are you able to add CTAs and sign-up forms, you can also tag users in the videos and offer related video content (like YouTube—it shows them directly on the screen to click on to watch). Kartra also allows you to do pop-up videos (where users click on a button and it appears and begins playing) while Kajabi lacks these features.
One advantage Kajabi has that Kartra does not is that they host your video through an included Wistia subscription with all plans. You’ll need to pay for one with Kartra, or use YouTube or Vimeo and embed the videos, if you want to host videos. On the starter plan (the only plan with a limitation), you have only 50GB of bandwidth.
Finally, both platforms offer video analytics that help you monitor engagement with your content, how long they are engaging, and more. Rightly so, because this is one of the more useful and important features to have.
Kartra vs Kajabi: Payment Management
Both platforms have payment management options. Kartra offers PayPal, Stripe, Authorize .net and Braintree. Kajabi only allows your customers to pay through PayPal or Stripe. Both allow you to bill your customers through one-time charges, recurring subscription-like charges, or instalment plans.
Kartra vs Kajabi: Unique features not covered yet
Kartra has a scheduling system and Kajabi doesn't. It essentially allows your customers to book appointments with you or your team. For functionality, this includes registration confirmation, pre-appointment and post-appointment reminders, notifications for when cancellations and rescheduling happens. You can either set these appointments up as free or paid, and it even integrates well with Kartra Checkouts, so they can be charged when setting the appointment.
Kajabi has an app and Kartra doesn't (both on Apple’s App Store and Google’s Play Store). This makes it very easy to send notifications to your members and is an easy way for them to use the content in your online course.
Kajabi offers podcast hosting and Karta doesn't. With Kajabi you can host public and private podcasts. Public podcasts are distributed to Apple, Google, and Spotify. Uploading podcasts is easy to do and new podcasts are automatically added to your podcast page.
Kajabi has a coaching package product and Karta doesn't. With Kajabi you can sell one-on-one coaching packages. There is calendar integration with Calendly and the ability to use other third party schedule apps through booking links. There is also an option to use a built in video service to have live meetings without zoom or another video conferencing service.
Our Full Verdict
I’ve decided to make this a two-fold answer, and you’ll see why in a second. Let’s check it out!
Kajabi vs Kartra: The Overall Winner
I’ve switched around the Kartra vs Kajabi to Kajabi vs Kartra because in many ways, Kajabi wins out. Here are four reasons:
First, Kajabi outperforms Kartra in website and course creation—it’s more user-friendly and still looks quite nice. The user experience, for both customers and your team, is much better than Kartra’s (not saying it’s bad, but Kajabi’s is better in my opinion). Kajabi offers a cleaner, more robust learning platform for users, and it's even easy for you to use as an instructor. In addition, Kajabi has student engagement tools that Kartra does not, such as community features and member only website pages.
Second, Kajabi’s platform support surpasses Kartra’s. Kajabi’s Customer Support is far more accessible, with 24/7 access on the higher plans and almost 12 hours of availability during normal business hours, as opposed to Kartra’s measly 8 hours (and they’re during weird hours, too!). Email support is also faster with Kajabi.
Third, Kajabi pricing is better than Kartra. I come to this conclusion comparing the plans closer to their feature offerings (meaning Silver to Basic, Gold to Growth, and Platinum to Pro, rather than staggered with Starter compared to Basic), Kajabi is cheaper than Kartra at all levels—even with the annual billing discounts. Kajabi even offers a free trial, while Kartra only offers a trial of two weeks for $1—and only once you try navigating away from their site.
Fourth, Kajabi has unique features that Kartra doesn't have. Kajabi's coaching product, podcast hosting, and blog all included in all pricing plans. These features bring more of your business under one platform and add to cost savings and reduce the complexity to manage your online business.
If you aren't a podcaster, using the podcast feature to build a private podcast for your membership site is a great way to make it easier for your members to get value out of your product and not need to create additional content (you just use the audio from your video content).
What you would need Kartra for
Kartra might be better for you if you have a very specific need that Kajabi doesn't have a solution for. Maybe you need to sell physical products and don’t want the hassle of trying to figure out a third-party plugin. Maybe you need the advanced, more complex tools for marketing and website creation that Kartra offers (especially those awesome videos with baked-in CTAs and the split-testing email functionality). Or maybe you just want to make additional revenue as a more experienced marketer through the sales funnel marketplace. Whatever the case may be, these are all valid reasons to choose Kartra over Kajabi.
If you are looking for an online course platform, an all in one platform that has the marketing features you need, or a place for your membership sites. Kartra and Kajabi both have great features for you. Where Kartra has more in some cases, Kajabi has more in other cases.
While there are some features I wish Kajabi had that Kartra offers. I find that Kajabi's overall feature set is better, their pricing is cheaper, and they are an easier platform to learn and use.
Choosing the right platform for your business is not a light choice. My recommendation is that you need to try it out for yourself. You can have a 30 day free trial of Kajabi by clicking the link here: Learn More About the 30-Day Trial
When you start your trial, I will give you extra support and one-on-one coaching to make it as easy as possible for you to know if Kajabi is right for you.
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