It doesn’t take longer than a few clicks to realize why Groundhoggers are so happy with this WordPress CRM plugin and why my Groundhogg review is positive. It entered the CRM market in late 2018 as the alternative to Infusionsoft, Mailchimp, and Active Campaign. We quickly learned just how easy it is to integrate Groundhogg into WordPress tech stacks.
It is flexible, reliable, and scalable. It has an open API. Webhooks. And lots of great integrations. But just how did it stand up in our User Case Scenario?
Here is the use case scenario:
My prospective client wanted an LMS (Learning Management System) to promote and manage online learning courses.
They also wanted a CRM solution to manage their contacts. They wanted the ability to send automated emails and SMS.
They wanted an easy check-out system that manages the subscriptions.
= All of this should deliver the following:
- Ease of Use
- Ease of Implementation
- Savings on Software
- Managed costs for Maintaining Software
- Reliable Customer Support for Software
- Very good Security
- And Ability to Scale
- Work with Hosting Requirements
Our clients had done their research, and they were looking at both Thinkific and Learndash for their LMS solutions. Now I also like Lifter LMS, but this client wanted to focus on Learndash. They were also looking at Groundhogg CRM, or Keap Max as their CRM.
My job was to consult on these matters and look at their entire tech stack to see which would be a good fit for them.
- I learned that my client’s website was already built on WordPress.
- I learned they had a custom-built Membership site, so the LMS had to have a way to integrate.
- I learned that they had a very good hosting plan with AWS.
- I also learned that they plan to get their 2000+ members to use their new LMS as soon as they had it populated with course content and ready for use.
The easy thing was to do a cost analysis. I quickly learned that Thinkific would be a much more expensive investment. But the one thing Thinkific had going for them, it was a plug-and-play ready-to-go software.
The one thing that they had going against them, is they would be at least 3 times the price of building in WordPress.
Now I use Learndash (and Lifter LMS) + Groundhogg in our client portfolio, so I was already comfortable recommending a WordPress tech stack for its ease of use and flexibility.
However, I went through the exercise of price comparison for building in WordPress vs. Thinkific. I threw in a bunch of plugins just to inflate the price a bit (best to quote higher than too low), just in case.
Cost Analysis (all prices in USD)
|Learndash | WordPress Plugin||Thinkific | Saas Solution|
|Ecommerce/Subscriptions, Woocommerce Subscriptions||199||incl.|
|Stripe/Paypal/Merchant||Pending merchant fees||Pending merchant fees|
|GamiPress/ Progress tracking||100||incl.|
|Groundhogg CRM & Marketing Automation
(unlimited contacts, unlimited users, you own your data)
|Text Messaging||AWS capability||–|
|Customer Service||Included (limited to each plugin)||Included – limited. Ongoing support only available in Plus plan.|
|Video Hosting||*pending service
|Course Landing Page||free||Via add on|
|Security (Wordfence Premium)
|Hosting Security||Pending AWS specs||Incl.|
|Hosting AWS||Client already purchased||–|
|Daily Back ups||Set up in AWS||incl.|
|Site speed (WP Rocket)||49||Best Practices|
|Estimate Cost of software to build||$2409.92
(not including video hosting costs)
Wow! Building in WordPress is a 4K savings a year!
Yes…there are some benefits to going with a Saas product like Thinkific:
- This is out of the box. Unlike Learndash or Lifter LMS, the setup is already done and you just have to populate your content.
- Drag and Drop themes and templates
- They host your content
- They take care of updates and security
- Some integrations available
BUT, the benefits to building your tech stack in WordPress far outweigh the need to use Saas products. ie:
- If there is any custom programming, alternate developers can step in. If you lose a specific employee or contractor, the language will be familiar to another service provider who can easily step in and take over.
- It’s perfectly scalable.
- As it is self-hosted, you have full control over your content and website architecture.
- It’s fully customizable. You can prioritize updates.
- You can access a full library of features, plugins, and add-ons to extend its functionality.
- You can access tech support through the plugin developers.
- WordPress LMS Software can easily handle more than 2000 users. As you scale, you just need to make sure that your hosting platform can handle the extra load.
- SAVE, SAVE AND SAVE. You’ll be saving money going this route.
Groundhogg + Learndash or Lifter LMS
Groundhogg has fully fleshed out integrations with both Lifter LMS & Learndash. Groundhogg plays very nicely with both.