“Landing Page Builder” MANIA – 3 Problems To Watch Out For Before You Buy (And My Choice)…

best landing page builderI wanted to share my thoughts on the recent mania of “landing page builder” product launches.

Specifically, I’m talking about products like LeadPages, Instabuilder 2.0, OptimizePress 2.0, Profit Builder, LandingPageMonkey, ClickFunnels etc.

The list goes on and on and right now there are a LOT of new ones coming out, almost on a weekly basis!

When it comes down to it they all allow you to do the same basic thing: Create sales pages, squeeze pages, download pages and so on.

Now building these pages are absolutely CRUCIAL for really any kind of online success but if you’re not careful you could end up buying ALL of them, especially with the very tempting discounts and bonus packages that are often available when they first get released.

Needless to say, this would be madness and you DON’T need all of them.

You just need one – or perhaps if you’re like me two – which you can use to create ALL of the pages you need.

But how do you decide which one to go for?

Well first of all I recommend being very careful of these pitfalls:

1) Rebranded = Badly Built

Some landing page builder products look amazing in the demo videos.

However, what most people don’t know is that sometimes the vendor selling it didn’t actually manage the development of it, or even come up with the original design.

Instead they have purchased resell and rebranding rights from a different developer, thrown in a couple of extra features before putting it up for sale as a new product.

Don’t get me wrong – in PRINCIPLE there is absolutely nothing wrong with this.

However, when it comes to landing pages builders rebranding usually means more bugs, conflicts with other plugins, slow page load times and generally more legacy issues than you would expect from well built software that has been designed from the ground up.

2) Lack of Updates & Development

Who is selling this product? Are they a dedicated software/Wordpress developer or are they just info product creators jumping on the bandwagon of the landing page mania trend?

As you know, landing page technology is developing fast so the last thing you want to do is buy software only to find that a few months down the road the seller has sidelined the product, stopped development and moved on to other things.

In my opinion it’s crucial to ensure you are using something that will be developed well for years to come.

3) Bad Support

Even the best software in the world has bugs, issues and problems.

I also find that quite often I’ll want to accomplish something specific that I’m not quite sure how to do. Maybe a little tweak or difference in page design that isn’t in the product documentation or manual.

When this happens I want a clear point of contact for support and a timely and appropriate answer.

If something can’t be done, then fair enough. But I like them to confirm this quickly and possibly even add it to their list of enhancements for future development.

Unfortunately, as you’ll have experienced too, this is often NOT the case.

When it comes to low cost information products then I can live with bad support and it doesn’t really bother me so much.

But when it concerns software I use to build the business critical pages I need to make my living online, it’s crucial – I just can’t live without it!

Your Sites, Your Choice…

So however tempting a particular offer at a particular time might be, I’d recommend you carefully consider the 3 issues above prior to purchase – a little research and consideration can save save a lot in the long run.

Testing different products is a decent way to go too, although it can take a fair amount of time and money, especially at the current release rate of new products!

What I Use…

Having gone through a fair amount of trial, error and testing myself, all factors considered it’s been a fairly easy decision to use the Thrive Architect (previously known as Thrive Content Builder) WordPress Plugin – a truly lovely piece of kit.

If you’re interested in looking at this in more detail then check out their product page here.

If you’d like a little more detail from me as to why I use this, read on…

Basically, Thrive Architect ticks more boxes for me than anything else:

1) Best page building functionality on the market
Some systems are ultra simple but lack flexibility and others are extremely flexible but are slow to use.

Architect balances these two extremes very well indeed – with a few pretty small exceptions it’s done everything I’ve asked of it in a fast, easy to use point-and-click way.

Like a lot of builders it has built in templates for all sorts of pages. But these ones are very customizable.

So regardless of your WordPress Theme you can set up single column/full width and mobile responsive squeeze pages, sales pages, thank you, download, upsell pages and so on really quickly.

Also, if you want to ever start completely from scratch then one of the best additions is quite simply the blank page template. Literally, just a total white page, regardless of your WordPress theme. It sounds almost stupid but this becomes surprisingly useful!

I actually look forward and *enjoy* using it. For me it’s also proven itself in terms of reliability as well – a nice feeling to have on a day to day basis.

2) Solid support
I’ve used the support a fair bit now and been very impressed. The staff are knowledgeable and pretty quick to respond (a few hours in my experience). There’s also a helpful and active support forum too if that’s your thing.

3) Active development
There are regular updates, improvements and new page templates added. WordPress development is what Thrive Themes do so they have no distractions and aren’t running their plugins as a sideshow to another business.

4) Cheaper than comparable competition
Thrive Architect beats products like LeadPages and OptimizePress on a pure cost basis. There are some budget products that roll in a bit cheaper but to me they just aren’t comparable when it comes to quality and the other benefits I’ve outlined.

5) Thrive also do some nice themes for WordPress too.
For my latest product I’ve actually used Content Builder (Update: now Thrive Architect) it in conjunction with their Ignition theme which I’ve switched to after using Canvas for quite a while (I still like Canvas but I prefer Ignition on balance).

To me this is a smaller benefit but if you’re looking for a new theme then take a look at the Thrive ones. Ignition is specifically designed for product sites but they have others (which I haven’t used) that look interesting too.

If you’ve followed me for any length of time then you’ll know it’s very rare that I place as much faith in a product as I have done here.

But I’m a fan of recommending what I actually use myself which is one of the main reasons you don’t see me recommending every single new product that comes out.

On this basis I can’t recommend Thrive Architect enough.

Of course, nothing is absolutely perfect but the updates and development I see coming from Thrive give me as much confidence as I feel I could have in any vendor.

Whether you plan on using it yourself or going in a completely different direction do look out for the 3 pitfalls above though – that’s the main thing.

I’ve fallen fowl of them myself in the past and it’s an unpleasant feeling to know you have build a part of your business on sand as oppose to solid rock…

What do you think? I’d love to hear whether you agree, disagree etc and as always ALL your comments and views are welcome. The ones expressed in this post are of course, just mine… Cheers, Rob 🙂

53 Responses to “Landing Page Builder” MANIA – 3 Problems To Watch Out For Before You Buy (And My Choice)…

  1. Rob Wilson December 11, 2014 at 10:33 am #

    Rob, I think you have summed it up nicely. It does concern me that a lot of plugins are being “launched” without the backup of a software company. You could be investing time and money into developing sales pages and have a problem that breaks everything without proper support.

    The background and pedigree of the developers of OptimizePress, Lead Pages, Thrive Themes are second to none. In the case of Thrive themes and Optimizepress I have seen them both turn round quick fixes to security and wordpress conflicts in hours.

    Becareful who you put your trust in.

    • Rob December 11, 2014 at 2:56 pm #

      Wise words Rob and very interesting to get your thoughts on this – thanks for taking the time to share them 🙂

      Cheers, Rob

  2. Neil Griffin December 11, 2014 at 11:24 am #

    Hi Rob,

    The guys at Thrive Themes continue to impress me with –

    1. The sheer amount of extra and improved features they keep producing

    2. Their regular and helpful webinars on a whole range of topics

    I’ve used Thrive Themes on my own website and found it logical and easy to use from scratch, and that was when it was first released!

    • Rob December 11, 2014 at 3:00 pm #

      Thanks Neil – great to hear that. I’ve had a lot of similar comments from others too 🙂

      All the best, Rob

  3. Nur December 11, 2014 at 11:29 am #

    Very well explained, Rob. Sometimes I get so angry with myself for the things I bought in the past because they were supposed to be “indispensable”. Now I consider lots of things for days before I buy some marketing tool and if the discount launch time expires because I haven’t made my mind, so be it.

    I now find the “Who sells it” part essential to my buying decision. It’s one of the first things I consider before buying marketing tools. The problem is that not only do “info products sellers” drop the product as soon as they have something else, but they bombard you with tons of other offers. It should be compulsory to get update notices or emails really related to the product even if you unsubscribe from their “offer bombardment”. In the past I had people threatening with not getting updates if I unsubscribed, which I did all the same.

    I also have Thrive Content Builder, although I am not very good at using it yet, but I hope to remedy it soon. The products I buy from Shane Melaugh I purchase with peace of mind.

    • Rob December 11, 2014 at 3:06 pm #

      Excellent points well made Nur – thanks for stopping by and commenting.

      Cheers, Rob 🙂

    • Shane December 11, 2014 at 3:40 pm #

      Hi Nur,

      Glad to know you’re liking the Content Builder so far. Please feel free to post in the support forums about things that aren’t clear to you. I’m always on the lookout for things like this to know how I can make tutorials and training webinars that help you get the most out of our products. 🙂

  4. David Hartshorne December 11, 2014 at 11:36 am #

    Hi Rob,

    This is a good post and I think the potential issues you have highlighted are quite pertinent. Support is crucial to any software product, but especially a business critical piece of software like landing pages.

    I can only echo your endorsement of Thrive Content Builder. The product is top notch and the support team are both responsive and knowledgable – a winning solution!

    – David

    • Rob December 11, 2014 at 3:09 pm #

      Absolutely David – as I said in the post you can live with bad support on a budget info product and most of the time you won’t ever trouble the helpdesk. But for a product that you use regularly over the long term you are almost certain to need support at some stage.

      Great to hear you like Content Builder too – it’s really the most exciting IM software product I’ve owned since the original OptimizePress 1.0 was released a few years ago!

      Cheers, Rob.

  5. Jan Jordyn December 11, 2014 at 11:52 am #

    Hi Rob.

    Cracking info and insights as always. My email inbox has been absolutely bombarded with Landing Page/ Content Builder/ themes/ plugins/ launches this week. So much so, that it’s actually prompted me to unsubscribe from at least half a dozen lists.

    What really irks me about all this intrusive nonsense, Rob, is that I don’t believe for one second most of the affiliates flogging this stuff actually believe in the products they promote – seems to me like they’re just out to make a fast buck.

    Of course, we can’t tar everyone with the same brush, but one ‘promoter’ who really made me chuckle this week, was the guy who tried to flog me his page-building software, yet used a completely different product to build his own sales page!

    Needless to say, I immediately hit the ‘unsubscribe’ button!

    However, seeing as I can use a genuinely good content builder, I’m off to check out your ‘Thrive’ link. Cheers for the heads-up. Hope you get to enjoy some quality time with your parents.

    Warmest regards,


    • Rob December 11, 2014 at 3:18 pm #

      Hey Jan,

      Yes, there is a lot of fast buck stuff going on although in all fairness some of the other products in the market are very very good. I don’t want to slate every product except Content Builder here at all. Far from it, a lot comes down to personal choice. (I know you weren’t suggesting this – but just to be clear for others reading :-)).

      This said, I agree with the sentiment of all your remarks. That’s quite funny about the promoter using one system to promote another too!

      Good to see you here on the blog 🙂

      Cheers, Rob.

  6. Kelvin Eastgate December 11, 2014 at 12:05 pm #

    Spot on Rob. Being a compulsive-shiny-thing-buyer I already had Thrive Content Builder but not used it much. But since you recommended it earlier I’d been taking a fresh look.

    And I really like what I see – so much so that I’ve signed up for access to their themes. Some of which include the ability to build structured membership sites (via Thrive Apprentice). This is a feature that tempted me into buying OP, OP2 and also SalesPress Pro (all of which cost more).

    Having that c-s-t-b affliction mentioned earlier, I’ve also purchased Landing Page Monkey and InstaBuilder 2. I’m going to take a closer look at them to see whether they can offer anything in addition to Thrive, but my expectation is that I’ll be going for refunds before the guarantee period expires.

    • Rob December 11, 2014 at 4:07 pm #

      Hi Kelvin, It’s funny you say that as I was the same when Content Builder first came out. I look at it briefly but didn’t use it properly for quite a while (during which time it improved massively especially with the templates being added). I hope you enjoy getting stuck in! Cheers, Rob

  7. Jake December 11, 2014 at 12:44 pm #

    Hi Rob.

    Great post. I also use Thrive Content Builder and it’s fantastic. It also checks off the most boxes for me and I write almost every page and post with it (not just landing/sales pages).

    However, as great as Thrive is and as much as its templates look professional, both Instabuilder2 and Profit Builder do have more attractive templates. (I recently picked them both up and have yet to decide for sure if I’ll keep them). Thrive has great support and customer service, but they have their marketing opinions and (at least for now) will not add features like video backgrounds or a player for self-hosted videos – youll have to code that yourself.

    The easiest to use is Insta then Profit then Thrive.

    Profit probably has the most features (i.e., different page elements) although they all have some unique features.

    Thrive is the most manipulable because it gives access to the source HTML and quick access to page-specific custom CSS.

    A draw back of Instabuilder2 is that it seems you can only build independent pages but can not use it to build anything within a page that’s managed your own theme.

    Conclusion: Thrive is tops for it’s quick workflow and ultimate page customizability. Profit Builder is next in line for its ease of customization and I highly recommend it for anyone who wants lots of customization options without needing to know any coding at all. I really like Instabuilder2 and while I would recommend it’s ultimate ease of use, it’s inability to construct theme-managed pages/posts is a serious draw-back.


    • Rob December 11, 2014 at 3:32 pm #

      Hi Jake,

      If there was a prize for the most concise, value-added comment this year I think you’d be well in the running with this!

      Thank you very much for what is really as mini-blog post here in the comments section. I’m sure a lot of people will find what you have written very helpful indeed.

      Cheers, Rob

    • Shane December 11, 2014 at 3:43 pm #

      Hi Jake,

      Thanks for sharing these insights. I’d love to know what kind of templates you’re looking for and not finding in TCB. We’re continually working on new templates, so getting ideas from customers is always good. 🙂

      • Jake December 11, 2014 at 8:24 pm #

        Hi Shane. That’s what I love about you and your product(s). You overdeliver and are always improving your product(s). Thanks.

        The template thing was based on feeling and impressions, so I went back to compare for you. Despite what I’m about to write, Thrive still comes out on top.

        The main things I found were:

        1. The coloured backgrounds of the InstaBuilder2 and ProfitBuilder templates seem to have better textures and/or are gradiently “lit” as opposed to Thrive’s flatter backgrounds.

        2. The “close-up” stock photos that come with them seem to be more appealing. Thrive’s higher quality stock photos seem to be mainly limited to the background photos and not attention grabbing foreground photos/graphics. (Of course, templates’ stock photos/graphics are likely to be replaced to make them unique and also relevant to the sales page being designed, but the templates are what gives the impression to us page builders.)

        3. The option for video backgrounds and and self hosted video would also be ideal.

        These aren’t make-it-or-break-it things when choosing a page builder, and Thrive is still my favorite. But those things make the overall impression and feel somewhat more professional.

        That being said, I’ve experienced your ambition to make your fantastic product even better and I’m sure that I’ll be very satisfied with Thrive for a long time.

        So, despite the above, I recommend that anybody who’s getting only one content builder should get it from ThriveThemes (Rob links to it above).

        • Shane December 12, 2014 at 9:45 am #

          Thanks for your reply, Jake!

          1) Should be easy enough to fix. In fact, check out our new landing page set called “Fame”. Is that the kind of thing you had in mind?

          2) That’s a good point. I hadn’t paid much attention to this because, like you say, those images are going to be replaced anyway. But you’re right that it matters for the first impression, so that’s something I’ll take into consideration, going forward.

          3) Self hosted videos are already supported. You can use the WordPress media player or custom HTML embeds. If there’s something you can’t do with either of those options, please let us know.
          Background videos aren’t included (yet) because of how gimmicky they are. Yes, they look nice, but I’ve yet to see a page that uses them with a real purpose. All the examples I’ve seen, the background video is just a pointless “oohh, shiny!” kind of page element. It doesn’t drive converisons but it sure as hell slows down the page load speed.

          So, until we see some good examples or (preferably) some data to show that video backgrounds can actually drive conversions, we’re not eager to add this feature.

  8. Bruce December 11, 2014 at 1:37 pm #

    Thanks Rob. I’ve been mulling over the purchase of Thrive, and you have just pushed me over the edge.

    All good works deserve a reward, so I’ll go through your link when I purchase.

    Thanks again,

    • Rob December 11, 2014 at 3:34 pm #

      Awesome Bruce, I don’t think you’ll regret it. There’s a small learning curve as you’d expect but once you’ve played around for a day or so I think you’ll start to enjoy it more and more. The more you get used to it the more you discover and the faster you get. Thanks for your comment – Cheers, Rob

  9. Malcolm December 11, 2014 at 2:57 pm #

    You’re just a bit late perhaps with this post Rob! I just purchased Instabuilder. Don’t think I will have wasted my money though Hopefully

    • Rob December 11, 2014 at 3:23 pm #

      No worries Malcolm, testing is completely valid and personal preference is a big part of the decision here too. I hope it works out for you. If you get a chance drop me an email in a couple of weeks when you’ve tested it. Would be very interested to hear your take on it and see if you feel stacks up in terms of what we’ve talked about here.

      All the best, Rob

  10. Keith December 11, 2014 at 3:12 pm #

    Thrive Content/Landing Page Builder is awesome & a GREAT team behind the product. They have a real business, whereas these “internet marketer” landing page products scream “money grab.” I will be honest… the sales pages and demo videos are tempting to try their products, but I I have been burned many times before with poor (or MIA) support and outright product abandonment. At some point, a shiny-object chaser has to tell themselves “enough is enough!” and choose ONE tool and build a business with it.

    Here’s a tip for your readers… buy Rob’s SpyBar tool. I use it to see if a marketer is using wordpress and what themes and plugins are installed. I have caught many wordpress theme and plugin marketers using something other than wordpress for their salespages, and I have caught Optimizepress & wishlistmenber users promoting other themes and membership solutions as the defacto standard. I refuse to buy products from marketers that dont use their own (or recommended) products to promote them.

    Shane at Thrive Themes has PROVEN himself trustworthy. It permeates everything he does. Marketers would do well to emulate is example. Using Shane and Thrive Themes as the benchmark, I have PASSED on many new items on the market, for the very reasons you mention in your article.

    I reiterate Rob Wilson’s comment above… “Be careful who you put your trust in.”

    • Rob December 11, 2014 at 4:13 pm #

      Well said Keith, you make some very good points here and clearly speak from experience.

      Thanks for the plug on SpyBar too – appreciate that and glad you are enjoying it. For the convenience of others I shall provide a link to it here: http://www.wpspybar.com 😉

      Cheers, Rob

    • Jake December 11, 2014 at 8:34 pm #

      Hey Keith. Spot on! Great advice. InstaBuilder and ProfitBuilder both have great support as well… but…

      … I have never seen support and customer relations as good as Thrive’s. Like you said, Shane (of Thrive) has a business behind his product. And while the others may also, Shane and his staff’s desire to help is clear, genuine, and constantly put into action, unlike others’ cookie-cutter customer service responses….

      which (with all its corollaries) is reason enough to choose Thrive Content Builder.

  11. Adrian December 11, 2014 at 3:52 pm #

    Excellent summary Rob.

    I use TCB and the themes, including for my company site.

    Apart from the functionality of the products, as you point out, the support is great, plus the fact they keep ‘spoiling’ us with extras is just staggering. True over delivery!

    • Rob December 12, 2014 at 4:01 pm #

      That’s great to hear Adrian – thanks for the comment.

      Cheers, Rob.

      P.S. Really like the layout of your site too (https://www.boldinternet.co.uk/). Nice, clean, concise and uncluttered using the FocusBlog theme (according to my SpyBar)!

      • Adrian November 27, 2015 at 9:39 am #

        Thanks for the feedback, Rob.

        Ahh, a cunning Spybar! You have it correct – FocusBlog theme. 🙂

  12. Rich Wiseman December 11, 2014 at 8:35 pm #

    Hi Rob,

    Great post, as always. I see you use Hybrid Connect for your optin forms – could you build these using Thrive Content Builder WordPress Plugin?

    I want to set up some squeeze pages with “Facebook Connect” submission buttons so I capture real emails. Could I do this with Thrive or would I need Hybrid Connect?

    Does Hybrid Connect require you to use their name with affiliate link or do you just use that to monetize?


    P.S. The reason I’m asking you these questions is because Thrive’s support haven’t got back to me.

    • Rob December 12, 2014 at 10:05 am #

      Good to see you here on the blog Rich, thanks for stopping by!

      1) Displaying the affiliate link is purely optional, you can switch it on or off in the settings. In the IM market I have it switched on but last year I built a site in the parenting niche and there I had it off.

      2) I believe the Facebook Connect functionality is only available in HybridConnect so Content Builder (which is more for complete pages) doesn’t cover this.

      However, I shall stand corrected if not (personally I don’t really use the FB Connect functionality anyway). Now Shane from Thrive Themes has picked up on a few of these comments, maybe he can clarify this for you. Failing that, shoot a ticket to their support desk.


      Cheers, Rob

  13. Dave Gale December 12, 2014 at 10:37 am #

    Great stuff Rob! I’ve been disappointed with a lot of these page builders, right now I’ve narrowed my choice to either IB2.0 or Thrive CB!

    • Jake December 12, 2014 at 11:53 am #

      Hi Dave.

      You won’t be disappointed with either of those. You might even want both.

      If you’re going to use only one here’s my unsolicited advice:

      If you do any HTML/CSS coding, go with TCB because it’s ultimately more powerful. Even if there’s a missing feature you can probably accomplish it with TCB’s “WordPress Editor element” which is a mini WP editor you can insert at any place on your page. It executes shortcodes and pretty much anything you can do in the normal WP editor.

      If you can’t do any coding, you might want IB2 – it’s kind of like a Mac in that it’s smoothe and full of features, but you’ll only be able to do what it itself can do.

      Remember that with IB2 you can’t edit the content of a page within your theme (you can only make independent sales pages). You can try WPProfitBuilder which is a lot like IB2 but it allows you to edit the content of a page/post within your theme.

      But final word is TCB unless something about it really doesn’t suit your purposes.

    • Rob December 12, 2014 at 4:02 pm #

      Glad the post helped you Dave, appreciate the comment to let me know 🙂

      Cheers, Rob

  14. Dave Gale December 12, 2014 at 12:01 pm #

    Thanks for that Jake – I got both already, going to be playing about with both on my test blog today!

  15. Jo Macdonald December 12, 2014 at 1:26 pm #

    Hi Rob,

    Very useful and very timely post. I was sucked into yet another shiny object and bought Landing Page Monkey yesterday. I had a play around and yes it’s got bells and whistles, but after reading your post and replies, I have now cancelled and purchased Thrive and the theme package. I was very impressed with the no fluff replies from Shane and support offered seems exceptional. I am at last ready to start! Thanks Rob and may I take this opportunity to wish you a Happy Christmas.

    • Rob December 12, 2014 at 3:31 pm #

      Hi Jo,

      I’m sure you’ll find the Thrive stuff really good so great to hear you’ve got it. Thanks for sharing your impressions and taking the time to comment 🙂

      Cheers, Rob.

  16. Simon Anthony December 12, 2014 at 1:34 pm #

    Funny you should mention this Rob. I was talking a few days ago to a friend on Facebook about all the “This is amazing. This is the last page builder you will ever need to buy” kinda thing. Seems it’s gone a bit insane recently.

    I bought OP1 ages ago and loved it. Upgraded to WP Profit Builder when it came out and was blown away. Really nice quick page builder and so easy. Plus it comes with a lot of really lovely and very modern templates.

    I have to admit that I also fell for the crazy buzz around Landing Page Monkey and bought that earlier this week, but it’s left me a bit disappointed. I know it’s only $27, but first impressions left me wondering why there was such hype around it. No templates, and when it comes down to it it’s a pretty basic squeeze builder.
    The only reason I’m keeping it, is I like the fact that you can get them to host the page for you. I can throw-up a squeeze page quickly in any niche I choose, with no need to worry about a dedicated domain.
    For $27 I think LPM is just about worth keeping, but only due to the hosted page facility. If it wasn’t for that I would have almost certainly refunded by now.

    But at the end of the day, if I can’t do what I need with OP1, WPPB and LPM, then the fault lies with the user ! For that reason, I pretty much blanked out all promos of InstaBuilder 2. Looks cool, but no thanks. Had enough for now.

    • Rob December 12, 2014 at 3:39 pm #

      There’s nothing wrong with testing Simon and in many ways it’s the ultimate way forward even though as I mentioned in the post it can be expensive in terms of time and money.

      Thanks for sharing your “journey” with us on this. As with many of the other comments on this post I’m sure others will find yours very helpful.

      Interesting what you say about OptimizePress 1.0 too – I still have legacy pages built with it and in many ways it was such a great product. Times move on though and I’ll have to get those pages converted to Thrive at some point. I found OP 2.0’s LiveEditor very awkward to use myself but I’ll definitely be one of the first to test OP 3.0 as and when if gets released…

      Cheers, Rob.

  17. Kirsi Raaska December 12, 2014 at 2:15 pm #

    Hi Rob,

    Thank you for sharing your opinion of Thrive Content Builder. Unfortunately I cannot share your view.

    I was one of the first people to buy this product, in fact I couldn’t wait for the launch as Shane had sent out a number of emails prior. I have now had the plugin and theme since its inception and I can say that I have NOT been able to successfully use the plugin with any theme. It just does not work. Period.

    I have put in support tickets and their support is horrible. They just send messages asking me to write somewhere else. They make it complicated to get a hold of anyone. And frankly I have given up trying out of shear frustration.

    Every time I go to create a new website I try out the plugin – just hoping that it will work, but as I said it just does not work. Nothing on it works the way that they claim. It makes me very sad.

    So I am sorry to say that I do not recommend anyone to buy this plugin.

    • Rob December 12, 2014 at 3:53 pm #

      Hi Kirsi,

      Thanks for sharing your experience. The feedback has been overwhelmingly positive so far so I was wondering if a negative review would come in!

      I have to say what you say seems very extreme to me and is so far removed from my own experience it almost seems like you are talking about a different company! Especially, given your bad review of the product just not working whatsoever and terrible support on top of that.

      This said you are very welcome in your comment – the wider range of views we get, the better decisions all of the readers here can make.

      I hope things improve for you Kirsi whatever software you choose to use going forward 🙂

      Cheers, Rob

    • Shane December 13, 2014 at 4:25 pm #

      Hi Kirsi,

      Sorry to hear about the negative experience you’ve had. As for support, please make sure you post in the Thrive Themes support forums. We have a group of extremely helpful and skillful people there and they solve problems fast.

      If you send a support request to our helpdesk (which is for all the non-Thrive products), they will simply ask you to post in the support forum, where the request is seen by the right team.

    • Jake December 13, 2014 at 4:36 pm #

      Hi Kirsi.
      Everybody has different experiences. Sorry Thrive didn’t work out for you – perhaps a plugin or theme conflict.

      As far as service goes, I can tell you this – as Shane said, the Thrive support desk -yes- will ask you to get support from the support forum. But once you get to the support forum, you’ll find support that is almost never seen anywhere.

      Their support team (as the *forum*) is knowledgeable and courteous. They usually respond within 24 hours, often within a few hours or less, and sometimes within minutes. And most of all, they’re helpful and are real problem solvers.

      If you can get to the support forum you’ll probably have a great experience, and if they can get Thrive CB working for you I’m sure you’ll be very impressed.

      If it doesn’t work out, then good luck. Try WPProfitBuilder or InstaBuilder2.

  18. Mark Byrne December 12, 2014 at 2:42 pm #

    What a great post and the comments are fantastic; you could publish this as a pdf and charge people for it!

    I’m about to return to action after a lengthy break and have been considering a change to the suite I had been using (Instabuilder and the Canvas theme). I had been seduced by the apparently effortless and yet powerful, true WYSIWYG feature set of Thrive’s Content Builder and the great discussion here (including Shane’s comments – how did you get him involved?!) has persuaded me.

    Great to have you regularly back in my inbox as well, Rob. Don’t want to get all bromancy, but love what you bring to the party!

    • Rob December 12, 2014 at 3:57 pm #

      Hi Mark,

      A special PDF report… Mmmmm…. Now there’s an idea 😉

      Good to hear you’ve been using Canvas too – I really like it (having switched away from Thesis a while ago). As I said in the post Ignition is going really well for me too so time will tell if I switch completely in the future.

      Thanks for your kind comments too – much appreciated.

      Cheers, Rob.

    • Shane December 13, 2014 at 4:23 pm #

      Hi Mark,

      I’m glad to hear that you’ve been seduced by the Thrive products. I have no doubt that you’ll find it a significant upgrade from what you were using before. 🙂

  19. Mark Salmon December 12, 2014 at 8:52 pm #

    Hi Rob,

    I’ve bought Instabuilder 1, tried OP2, bought Profit Builder but after trying all these page building systems settled on Thrive Content Builder as the best option with the nicest page designs. I’m so satisfied with it, I was able to resist Instabuilder 2!

    I’ve come to the same conclusion as you about Thrive through a lot of trial and error.

    Another great article Rob!

    • Rob December 13, 2014 at 9:07 am #

      Thanks for this Mark – it’s always nice to hear others coming to the same conclusion as yourself through trial, error and testing.

      Cheers, Rob.

  20. Ian White December 15, 2014 at 2:22 pm #

    Hi Rob,

    Loads of mentions of IB and OP etc but not much for LeadPages.

    Well I was seduced by LeadPages and on the whole I’m quite satisfied.

    I’ve had a few ups & downs with them especially when I orginally bought it because of their so-called ‘one-click’ to publish in Facebook app.

    The day after I bought it they completely changed everything (no dedicated Facebook app templates any more) but after a few ‘tickets’ and me moaning on Twitter I got responses. Not ideal but ok I guess.

    My only other gripe about LP is they’re constantly ‘tweaking’ and making improvements (a good thing) but of course that instantly renders all their ‘help & support’ videos useless.

    Unfortunately for me I like to view instructional videos (hence being signed up to Rob’s site) so this is a bit of a pain for me but overall it does ‘do what it says on the tin’ so I guess I shouldn’t complain too much.

    If there’s one bit of kit that a newbie should really have it’s one of these.


    • Rob December 16, 2014 at 6:26 pm #

      Hi Ian,

      Great to get your take on this one and it’s interesting to hear that about LeadPages. I also think it’s pretty expensive now in comparison to the competition which seems to be hot on its heals. Although I still use it myself a bit I wondering whether that will still be the case in 6 months…. Exciting times and time certainly will tell!

      Cheers, Rob.

  21. Andrew December 27, 2014 at 7:17 pm #

    So far I’ve found optimizepress to be quite good although the page builder can be a bit tricky to get familiar with but once you realise the potential if it it’s really good and easy to use. I know you didn’t rate OP2 as highly as OP1 Rob however OP2 was my first experience of it so can’t vouch for 1/2 either way better/worse.

  22. Eric June 18, 2015 at 7:54 pm #

    Well, when I stumbled across this article, I had just been in the process of deciding between OP and Thrive…. and was slightly leaning toward Thrive, but your comments above sealed it…. I got a bonus as well… discovering an IM teacher from whom I may likely soon be purchasing a product or two… thanks much! Eric

    • Rob June 19, 2015 at 12:33 pm #

      Hi Eric,

      Great choice in my book. Thanks for your comment and I hope you enjoy using your new software 🙂

      Cheers, Rob.

  23. Tony November 23, 2015 at 4:01 pm #

    So, anyone else has tried iether intanbuilder 2.0, profitbuilder, or Thrive Content Builder???
    I’m wondering if TCB would work with elegantthemes ??? I’m using the Divi Theme from elegant theme … I’m asking because I saw that someone posted that TCB was not working with the theme she had … thanks for your response…

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