#353 WP-Tonic Show With Special Guest Adam Preiser Joint Co-Founder of CartFlows & WPCrafter

#353 WP-Tonic Show With Special Guest Adam Preiser founder of WPCrafter and joint co-founder of CartFlows

We interview Adam Preiser of WPCrafter and now joint co-founder of CartFlows.

Did you know that the majority of membership & eCommerce websites make it hard for customers to simply checkout?

The process is filled with unnecessary steps and unnecessary questions. It’s no surprise that nearly 70% of people who start the checkout process end up abandoning it all together.

And the worst part is, if you are using the world’s most widely used membership & eCommerce platform, WooCommerce, you have zero control over any of this.

Sure you can hire an expensive coder to make you an unmanageable / inflexible solution that is prone to breaking, but for the majority of us, spending tens of thousands of dollars is just not an option.

 

Jonathon: Welcome back to the WP tonic show. This is episode 353. Got a friend of the show, a great guy, doing great stuff in WordPress. That’s Adam Preiser. And he’s the co-founder of CartFlows. Adam, would you like to quickly introduce yourself to the listeners and viewers?

Adam: Sure thing. Hey everybody my name is Adam. More commonly known as Adam at WP Crafter because of the YouTube channel that I have created for WP Crafter. But I also started a product and I think we’re going to talk about lots of things just catch up on the podcast. But I do want to say hello and thanks for listening today.

Jonathon: That’s great. My co-host Cindy Nicholson couldn’t be with us today, but she’ll be back next week. So Adam, you know, CartFlows. Great launch, seems a really interesting product. What’s the vision of the product? Why did you start with your co-founder? And where do you hope to take this great product?

Adam: Well, you know, I actually love telling this. Actually I kind of love when a product has a story and Cartflows as a story. And it actually goes back two years ago when I always knew that at some point I would come out with a product. I always knew that would happen, but a lot of things just had to be perfect for it. Because what I’m doing with WP Crafter, if I was to have a product one day and you know, solve a problem that I saw from the community and what they were having. And it wasn’t backed by a huge team of expertise and support and all that. It could actually damage all the goodwill that I’ve been building for years. And I, I’m going to keep building. So you know, I knew even though I knew two years ago that I would. Come out with the product, I didn’t know how I would do that one day.

But I did know how it would have to happen and how it has to go down. So about two years ago, a product had come out called ultimate add-ons for beaver builder. And it’s by a company called Brainstorm Force. They have software on millions of websites. I actually millions, let me just quantify that more accurately, over 2 million websites they have software on. This essentially means they’ve got experience in building WordPress products that are in lots of different hosting environments, a lot of experience with support. And so, but when that product came out, it was an add-on package for beaver builder. The Co-founder of that company had reached out to me because I had purchased it and I really liked it at the time I was using beaver builder and I was really excited about it. And that was the start of a friendship with him.

Now I’m in southern California, he’s on the other side of the world. He’s based in India. And so but we just continued our friendship communicating and we ended up becoming kind of aligned in a lot of things. And you know, he would give me lots of advice. You know, it’s funny, I’m actually, my birthday’s tomorrow and I turn forty something. Okay. It doesn’t matter which 40 or what the other number is, right? And so he’s 15 years younger than me, but age actually doesn’t matter if someone has amazing advice that works, you just listen. I don’t care if they’re like 15. I mean, my son, he’s 12 and he gives me advice and it ends up being grade advice. So I’m always been an open book. But we had built a friendship where I was given to him some ideas.

He was given me some ideas, he would give me advice, he’d hold my feet to the fire, I’d hold his feet to the fire and it ended up becoming this natural organic friendship. And then what happened was he was flying out to California to go to Cabo San Lucas in 2017. And so I live near the airport he was going to be at for a day. And so I went and picked him up and we spent the day together in 2017. And I’m the world’s worst tour guide. So if you’re thinking I’m going to come to LA and be there for a day or two and connect up with Adam, just know, I’ll take you to a really nice meal. But it’s probably not going to be the best site seeing experience. I felt so horrible. Anyways, we ended up at a restaurant. Fleming’s, you probably have a Fleming’s out there in Vegas?

Jonathon: I don`t live Vegas, I live in Reno.

Adam: That probably would be a problem, right?

Jonathon: It’s a short flight. It’s about an hour flight. 8 hour plus drive though.

Adam: I get that confused for a second there.

Jonathon: You are not the only person who has said that to me.

Adam: Okay, good. I’m not feeling so bad, so I took them out to Fleming’s. And so if you’re in southern California, might be familiar with Flemings itself. Not the highest end, but it’s a fancy a steakhouse and they have steak and lobster. And so I know.

Jonathon: Yum, yum.

Adam: Oh yeah. So in India. They don’t eat a lot of seafood. They don’t eat a lot of red meat, so I’m like, let me just get this guy steak and lobster, take him out, let him, you know, enjoy that. It is funny. We went there and he had never had lobster before. And when you first get a lobster served to you, it’s like, how do you actually, you know, sometimes you try something new but you don’t know how you’re supposed to properly eat it.

You know, when they pulled the lobster tail and it flaps over the shell. anyways so we ended up having a great time and we started talking about lots of different things. And really solidifying our friendship. But we were just talking about some of the pain points that are involved with WordPress and eCommerce. And so, you know you have a lot of software as a service platforms that are way ahead of the curve. And it totally blasted past WordPress when it comes to eCommerce and modern ways of selling products. And so you know, there are a lot of things that we talked about. And it really revolved around an optimized sales process that resembles what we interact with and deal with every day. and you know, more commonly known on the Internet as sales funnels.

You’re familiar with sales funnels?

Jonathon: Yes.

Adam: So there’s like a, you know, it’s a problem that a software as a service companies have like created great solutions for. But there wasn’t anything for WordPress and a sales funnel. If you’re a listener and you’re not so familiar with what that is, you actually interact with them every single day, right? but you just don’t know it. So when you go to that restaurant and you’re there with your spouse, and your waiter comes up and gives you this whole personalized experience, sales experience where they tell you the specials. And then, when you place your order, they give you lots of information to help you make your decision. Or you place your order. They ask if you’d like to add a salad to that or a soup. And sometimes you say yes, sometimes you say no, but if he didn’t offer it or she didn’t offer it, you probably wouldn’t say yes or no because this offer wouldn’t have been made.

And then they look to your spouse, in my case, my wife, and they’ll say, ma’am, would you, would you like to enjoy a glass of champagne or a glass of wine with your meal? Now someday she’s just going to say yes. Some days she’s just going to say no. But if he didn’t can’t say he, you know, we’re in the, you know, there’s, you know, okay, just trying to be balanced here. So the waiter would say, if the waiter would not, or the server would not make that suggestion or that offer, there’s no chance of ordering wine or champagne. and what happens at the end of the meal, they bring that nice visual, dessert cart, right? And they’re like, oh, you know, to top off your meal, would you like this? Or some coffee or all that. This is essentially just a sales process.

It’s when someone’s there already expressing their interests, they’re hungry, they’re there and they’re there to consume food and have a nice evening. You’re just making the service, just making an additional purchase suggestions and offers along the way. and it’s to better serve the person that’s there. I like it when they make these suggestions for me because I want to, you know what, and I’ll tell you something about me. Many times I want to be sold. I want to be sold something, you know, so this is like a modern sales process that we experience in lots of different situations in normal life. It’s just commonplace and we’re just assembly making it so WordPress users can do the same thing with their websites to have this kind of always on digital salesperson selling your products and making additional offers as your buyer is purchasing things from you. Does that make sense?

Jonathon: Oh, sounds great. On the podcast, we are focused on membership sites. So your new product can it be useful for an entrepreneur that’s got a membership site?

Adam: Yeah. Well, let me, I’ll tell you exactly what we’ve done. So with Cartflows, what it allows you to do is it’s a WordPress software that sits on top of WordPress obviously. And also for the checkout portion of Cartflows, we use Woocommerce. However, we mostly use Woocommerce for the back end of the website. And we did this because it’s got all the payment gateways it as all the integrations. So for membership software, if you’re using restrict content pro or you’re using MemberPress, it already integrates with Woocommerce.

For a learning management systems, you’re using LearnDash or Lifter LMS, they already have integration. So what we have, we’ve done a beautiful, what we’ve done. You install Cartflows, you click create a new flow. A flow is this kind of sales funnel process. And we have all of these already done for you templates, especially one’s for authors, course creators, digital products, physical products. And you choose the one you like, you click one button and now you have this on your website.

And what we do is you have complete customization of the checkout experience. So if anyone’s used woo commerce before, you know, it’s like impossible to make that thing look good. so with a Cartflows checkout, you can put information there to reinforce the purchase and there’s no friction for your buyer. So you could show testimonials, you could do all that.

But this is also where the first opportunity comes in place to make an additional offer. So if you’re selling a membership, maybe you actually don’t want to go straight in for the membership. Maybe you go straight in with some form of an eBook or a video course. But then we have something called a bump offer. And this is one of the main core features that we add. And what this is, is an additional offer that you make right when about to hit that buy button.

And the beauty of this is they can click want your buyer can click one button and it automatically adds it to the order, which is why it’s called an order bump. It’s the bump up, the purchase price of that order. And you make a good offer. And what’s amazing is these conferred, just like that restaurant`s salad/wine example, these convert from 10 to 30 percent on average depending on how you craft that offer. So usually it’s something that will help the buyer get the result a little faster. And so the first step is the order bump.

And then after the buyer, purchases, then you can take them to a series of upsells and down sells. And upsells were you, after they’ve made the purchase, you make that additional offer. And maybe that’s when you go in for the membership so you don’t go into the membership in the beginning because what the psychology of buying is. If someone trusts you enough to check out and take that first step forward with you, there are a lot more likely to take that next step as well. And if they’re already in that buying process, that’s when you want to make that additional offer.

So we have a demo that we’re setting up on our website for people to go through and test this out for themselves. And so in our demo, the first offer is an eBook and then we have an order bump. And then the next offer is a membership. A membership where you get more access to the course creator or for this membership community. And then if someone doesn’t want that because maybe it’s just too much for them at that moment and they say, no, thank you. Then we offer a video course at half the price of the membership. So there’s this process of making additional offers to meet the needs of your buyer better and have more options for them. It’s a fantastic, for course creators, authors, and membership websites. Just pretty much any situation.

Jonathon: Well that sounds fun. Fantastic actually. Well, we’re going to go for our break folks. We’re going to be coming back. And we will be delving more with Adam about Cartflows and about the process of building this great plugin and we’ll be back in a few moments.

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Jonathon: We’re coming back. Had a really great chat with one of my friends Adam. so Adam, you’ve been in the online world for, you know, a few years now, but I know that this process, you’ve probably learned some lessons. What are some of the couple of things you have learned in the process of building this plugin with your cofounder?

Adam: Well, I’ll tell you. I approach it cautiously because you can’t just jump into a partnership with someone that you don’t have a history with, to know their skill level, to know their commitment, their dedication, their reliability. Actually just know who they are in their character. So one of the first things I learned was you don’t just jump. Gosh, I don’t want to offend anybody. You don’t jump into bed after the first date when it comes to your reputation being on the line. Right? So that was the, the very first thing. And so then what I’ve learned is a lot of work, a lot of dedication goes into making a product. So one of the things that I’ve done on the WP Crafters side is I’ve reviewed a lot of products. One of the things I do is I make these product review videos.

So I kind of have an idea of what I think anyway is easy to use is intuitive and what is not. And then what I saw, what I discovered in this process, making something simple, intuitive and easy to use is the hardest thing imaginable. you know, when anyone looks at our interface, if you’ve ever used WordPress, you immediately feel right at home. You could watch a five minute tutorial and pretty much have our product mastered and it might almost look too simple. But the reality is it was so hard to get it to that point. It was excruciatingly hard to get it to be simple. We went through seven different versions of the interface to get to what we ended up you know, what we ended up with. And it was quite a process and if anyone’s thinking of having a product one day, there’s one crucial step that a lot of people skip, but it would be to your own detriment.

You have to go and use every single, if there’s any similar products or services out there, you have to go and use every single one to see what they get right and to see what they get wrong. So we were fortunate that there’s a lot of software as a service companies that have already created this kind of, solve this problem and created a solution on the software service side. They’re just very expensive and they’re not flexible because it’s not built on an open platform. I subscribed to every single one, used every single one in detail. And so far, I’ll give you an example. There’s one called Kartra and Kartra does something similar. And I thought I wanted what Kartra offer, to do something similar. So what they do when you build your sales funnel, it’s this free flowing canvas where you can drag these up-sells and all that and create kind of a map and everything’s free flowing and moves around and all that.

And I was, I was convinced that that’s what I wanted for Cartflows. But after using it I realized that is complicated, it is complicated and overwhelming to use. And there isn’t that much of a benefit to having that free flowing canvas. So instead we went for a more simpler route that would be similar to click funnels. So click funnels has it where you can just easily drag and drop and move your steps. And so we drew a little bit of inspiration from that interface, but you don’t know what you don’t know unless you’re testing everything out there to find out what works and what doesn’t work and what you can improve on. And you know, the weaknesses and other products.

Jonathon: so true. So true. So in general, what’s been the reception that you’ve got from the WordPress community about the product?

Adam: Well, you know what happened. So we launched this product on November 19th. And what happened, we didn’t expect to happen. And this is actually my first Rodeo. It wasn’t Sue Jay’s because he has multiple products. And he’s been down every road before in this business. He’s one of the top WordPress product creators today. so for me, this is all brand new. So when we first released it, I learned a lot. Number one, you have to commute you ask the reception, but I’m tying this into what I learned.
You have to communicate the value to someone so they can understand the value of your product. A number one, I learned that. So I think that was one of the mistakes that I made when we released this product. I don’t think I communicated the value up properly. And so, another mistake, but we corrected it right away was we launched this the Monday before black Friday. And there’s a lot of competition at that time for dollars, you know. So we had our price, but people were like, I really want your product.

I don’t mind the price, but I want to buy these other 30 other products that are half off right now. And so I can’t justify just buying yours and not being able to buy theirs. And so we paid attention, we listened to people and that’s the best thing you could do is just listen to people. And we came up with this crazy split pay option so people could purchase our product and just split it out over six months. And that really turned things around because there were some people that they were excited about the product, but they just couldn’t get it because of all the dollar competition, you know. So, but then what happened was just totally blew us away. The reception that this product has, I mean, we have some big names in the WordPress ecosystem that loved this product. They’re creating videos on this product.

They’re using it to build their own sales funnels on their website. Now I can’t reveal some of the, some of the names of people that are using it. Once their product is and their service and maybe event tickets are for sale. Of course I’m going to be like shouting to the moon and hey, check out so and so is using the checkout. So and so is using it. but we’re really grateful for the support that we’ve received as a lot of excited people about this product. I’m excited about the product because I’ve built it, we built it for us, but there are so many other people that it really struck a chord. Because here’s the thing. Let me just say why this is so exciting and you know, who put it best was Troy Dean. Has Troy Dean been on the podcast?

Jonathon: Yes he has been on once actually.

Adam: So if you’re not familiar with Troy Dean, he runs probably the most well known a training program for WordPress service providers. It’s called WP Elevation. And it’s a great program. It’s changed the lives of probably thousands of people, the amount of students that he’s had. And so he looked at it and he made this testimonial video that was totally unexpected and he put it best. He says, guys, I have used every product out there. I’ve used ClickFunnels, which is $3,600 a year. They have a cheaper plan for $1,200 a year. I’ve used this platform and this platform. And every single time we’d use one of these platforms, we’d run into some kind of something we needed it to do and wouldn’t do. And then we would ask them and they would say, sure, we’ll add it to our list and then, you know, it will never be implemented. It’s a closed system. It’s never going to really do everything that you wanted to do.

And he even went as far as saying that Cartflows is probably the most exciting product since we’ve had page builders. And you know, page builders are huge. It’s so huge. That word press just built their own Gutenberg. And so he put it best as someone that’s used all these systems that, you know, building on an open platform, it makes all the difference. Cartflows can allow you to do things that those platforms will never allow you to do. When it comes to payment gateways, translations, multilingual, just these are the basic things you can’t do with those other systems. But you can because we’re plugged into the WordPress ecosystem. It’s just, it’s just amazing to hear that. But the reception a kind of took us off guard. I felt like people wanted this, but then I really saw when people started buying it like crazy that people really did want this, that we’re onto something here.

Jonathon: Oh, that’s great. Did you have any doubts with your Co-founder that you were on the right track or did you have a strong gut feeling based on all your interactions on WP Crafted, that along as you got the fit and finish up to the standard you were looking for, that you are pretty confident that you can have a winner?

Adam: Yeah. Well, leading. There’s always a. For me, because this is the first time I’ve been a part of a product like this. Co-founding a product there was a lingering doubt, but it was very minor because I really believe in this. And I really believe that it can make a massive difference in anyone’s life easily that is selling anything on the Internet. And of course it can be used for more than selling things and can be used for generating leads, getting signups to webinars, all kinds of things like that and charities. It could be used for everything. It’s not only about making money, but there was just this lingering doubt like I don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow when we make this public. And when we launched it that first day. I was, a lot of people, I’ve built a lot of goodwill because I’m a giver.

I give on my YouTube channel, there’s over 400 videos that I’ve put there to help people. I get 50 to 100 comments a day. I get Facebook messages, I’m constantly helping other people and it doesn’t bother me. Actually that’s how I get fulfillment in life is helping other people. And so a lot of people that I had helped really excited about this product really wanted to jump in, but before we had that payment plan, some of them felt a little hurt by me. And, I was a little bit of you know, and anytime you have a little bits and pockets of haters out there and stuff like that. I got to say that first day was probably the roughest day I’ve had all year. First day we had this available for sales, for sale. I was pretty devastated at some of the things that people were saying. But I saw where I made the mistakes that probably caused that and maybe not fully communicating the value. So

Jonathon: Pricing is a nightmare in its own right isn’t it?

Adam: Yeah. And I’ll, let me quantify that a little bit. So on my YouTube channel; I’ve reviewed a lot of products that have made it on AppSumo. AppSumo is a great platform for buyers. They line up these incredible deals and they’re only like $49 in their lifetime accounts and all that. And they bring in lots of sales numbers and all that. But it’s not necessarily healthy for the product creator or the product behind or the company behind the product. So like I said in the beginning, I’m releasing something for the long term because my reputation’s on the line here. And if I was to make CartFlows some incredible AppSumo deal where it’s like $49 for a lifetime account, we would get crushed. Because number one it’s a complex product. Because we have multiple payment gateways we have to integrate with. I mean, there’s just so much complexity to it.

We’re supporting all these page builders we are building. Heck, every sales funnel template that we create costs about $800 to $1,000. and we’re just pumping these in their month after month. You know, it’s not an inexpensive product to have created. And so I think people were thinking it was going to be like this $49 AppSumo thing. And those were the people that were, could be a little vicious. So, but it’s okay literally, what is it, that song, what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger. I tell ya, you know, it didn’t kill me in that first day, and it made me way stronger.

And CartFlows ended up being a massive success beyond our wildest expectations in one week. We’re like literally approaching a thousand new customers, which is unheard of. I mean, it’s just so, such a huge accomplishment. And that’s because we poured our heart and soul for 12 months to build the best product that we could build. And when it shipped, it was already in its place meet needs for that. People have been wanted, you know, one of the first reactions I’d hear from people that see it, including Troy Dean, was, I’ve been wanting this for years. I’ve been wanting to develop this for years. Troy Dean said, I told my team two years ago, we need to build this. It’s not easy to build a product. They’ll tell you that.

Jonathon: You don’t have to tell me.

Adam: Oh yeah. Well, so you obviously. So let’s flip the conversation about.

Jonathon: Actually before that I would like to finish off the podcast and we can go in the bonus content. And also talk about Adam`s recent interview with Matt Mullenweg the cofounder of WordPress. So Adam we going to finish the audio podcast part of the show. Hopefully you can stay on for 10, 12 minutes and we can discuss your recent interview, but how can people learn more about you and your great product?

Adam: So, and for the WP Crafter side you could just Google WP Crafter or go to youtube.com/wp crafter. All my videos, they’re there, they’re free. We have an awesome community. And like you said, there’s an interview with Matt Mullenweg that I just did my first interview. That was . we’re going to talk about that actually in the WP tonic tomorrow. But CartFlows is just cartflows.com. And we also have an awesome Facebook group community around CartFlows. You can just go to Facebook and search for CartFlows where we’re talking strategy. Even if you’re not ready for CartFlows, you could go in there and see what CartFlows is all about, all the enthusiasm, all the strategies being shared. But it’s just cartflows.com. We’d love to have you check it out. We have regular webinars going on. There are videos there that explained how it works and everything.

Jonathon: That`s great. And I just want to Adam. Adam has become a friend and it looks a fabulous product. Am not trying to get the scary version of him. But it looks fabulous and I’m sure it’s going to work out. And I’m so pleased for you Adam and for your co-founder. He’s a great guy as well. I’ve had him on the show. We’ll be back next week folks with somebody that’s going to give you some insights on how to build a more successful membership website. So you can become a real successful eLearning entrepreneur. We will be back next week folks. Bye.

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