Free Plus Shipping Funnel Ski Wax Fail

After watching episode 2 of funnelhacker.tv where Russell Brunson, the founder of clickfunnels.com (the software we use for all our sales funnels), interviewed Trey Lewellen about his free plus shipping funnels I had to give this a go. Trey is making over $100,000 a month with over 3000 people in a $39 continuity program (and aiming for $400k/m).

I started thinking about which products I could give away where the shipping we would charge would cover the cost of purchasing the product. I went back to my Four Hour Work Week style whiteboard of different communities I’m a member of and chose the ski market.

I then started looking at ski magazines and the accessories section on online retailer websites to try and find a suitable product and thought that ski wax seemed like a good play. I’d attended the London ski show a couple of years back and met the founder of the ski wax company Butta and emailed to get trade prices. I chose their ‘rub on’ wax product as anyone could use it (their other ones you need to use an iron and it’s more for hardcore enthusiasts).


I then started thinking how the funnel could be structured and thought about which product I could use to get people into a continuity program and what I could use for the final upsell.

Butta also make plastic wax scrapers which are very cheap to purchase and I thought this would be an excellent complementary product to the initial offer. “Wax on, scrape off” made a lot of sense in my head and remember I’m a skier and snowboarder and a member of this community.


Butta also had a ‘wax service kit’ for £30 retail which I thought would be a great final upsell (below):


Onto the sales funnel

Ok so that’s the products sorted.

I then started building out the sales funnel in clickfunnels and it looked like the below:

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Screen Shot 2015-12-08 at 10.05.46

The first page was a squeeze to capture email addresses:

Screen Shot 2015-12-08 at 10.09.45

The next page was the 2 step order form to take the shipping payment of £2.99:

Screen Shot 2015-12-08 at 10.19.15

The first one time offer is what the whole funnel is built upon – to get people into the continuity program. This was the first one I had done personally so I priced it at just £9/m and the offer looked like this:

Screen Shot 2015-12-08 at 11.28.23

Then the final offer was an upsell to go from one bar of wax to a complete wax service kit:

Screen Shot 2015-12-08 at 11.35.43

I then built out an entire members area offering the best curated ski & snowboard content on the web – I was proud of this:

Screen Shot 2015-12-08 at 11.53.24

Funnel TESTING & promotion

Ok so funnel built, onto testing to see whether it converts. Seeing as I was going to the ski show anyway I decided the smartest thing to do would be to take 1000x flyers and a popup stand with me with the link to the subdomain the funnel was on:



The popup stand was a good way to save £5k for a booth. Just ensure you have ninja skills to scout out the best spot and erect it lightening fast! Amazingly the stand lasted the full four days of the ski show as I was still getting text optins (using LeadDigits by Leadpages as the Clickfunnels Text Optins hasn’t arrived in UK yet) on the final day!

I thought the setup and funnel structure was great and I was super excited to start promoting and paying facebook and instagram pages to promote the funnel…

Funnel results

First up the good news.

I succeeded in getting real life cold traffic (in person at the show) to opt in and go through the funnel.

The squeeze page was converting at 40% and the order form page at 30% so it seemed like ski wax was a great front end bait.

I was covering the cost of the product (at trade price) by the £2.99 shipping cost being taken, however I was losing £3.40 each time in packaging & posting with Royal Mail. The intention was obviously to make this up with the continuity.

After the order form, 20% of people were taking the scraper into the £9/m continuity programme and 20% were buying the full service kit (didn’t expect that, these funnels sure do upsell well!) and I was making £5 profit on each one.

Ok so let’s do the math(s for us Brits) to work out how many months people would have to stay in the continuity (or “stick”) to make this funnel breakeven…

For every 100 people who were saying yes to the free wax we received £3 but the cost of the wax and to post was £6.40 total. So for 100 customers we receive £300 in revenue but our expenditure is £640 for a front end loss of £340.

20% of people enter the continuity which is 20 and then 20% of them are buying the service kit which is 4 for £20 profit.

£340-£20 = £320 / the 20 people in the continuity means each person had to get billed an additional £16 or 2 months for this funnel to breakeven.

Sounds good right? Now the bad news…

Everyone who signed up cancelled their free trial (by sending an email) within 2-3 days!

In Trey’s video he mentioned that he had a five month average stick rate.

If this happened with this ski membership then for 100 people who hit the squeeze page, 40 would hit the order form, 30% which is 12 would take the wax, 20% take the continuity (so let’s say 3) and then 20% (so let’s say 1) would purchase the service kit.

This works out so that for every 100 visitors, 12 (30% of the 40) spend £3 (but we lose £3.40) , 3 spend £135 (3x5x£9) and 1 spends another £5 for £176 income – £40 cost = £136 total profit.

This means that we could spend up to £1.36 a click to profitably acquire a customer.

Assuming the 5 month stick, if we could buy ski traffic for less than 68p CPC then for every £1 invested in advertising we’re making more than £2.

However we couldn’t even make a 1 month stick as skiers were cancelling within days…

Funnel fulfilment

So even though this was a massive fail it was still cool to receive the ski wax via UPS and then send out our free+ shipping goody bags – we felt like Father Christmas.


IMG_0665 2

Funnel conclusion

Skiers are either super savvy or cheap.

And I don’t believe in the former…

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At least we’ve been getting better results for our customers. We built a pretty innovative sales funnel for a customer in the pet niche where we started with an optin giveaway competition that led into a free plus shipping offer with upsells. We did a test with facebook and sent over 721 people into the funnel.


We achieved a crazy 69% optin rate on the giveaway where 481 people reached the thank you page.


F+S Offer

Of that number 295 hit the button to go to the free plus shipping page and 40% took us up on that first offer which is 117 purchases paying $4.95 for shipping as well as a $5 order bump for an additional product.


Upsell 1

Then we hit them with an upsell for one of two options at either $19.95 or $39.90 and we got 8 purchases.


Upsell 2

We then hit them with a final offer for one of two $14.95 products and we got 8 purchases.


From 721 visitors we generated 495 emails as well as 141 purchases (117 unique) totalling $1,534 in revenue. Cost of facebook $214.

The customers’ typical cost per acquisition is $22-28 – here we we brought that down to $13!

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Richard Patey

Writer for Funnel Engine

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 11 comments
Chris M. (ClientCoffee.com) - December 9, 2015

Great stuff, Richard – are you planning to pivot and find a better continuity plan, or was this simply a stab-in-the-dark effort that didn’t pan out?

    Richard Patey - December 9, 2015

    Hey buddy, I’ll be trying a free+shipping again (into membership continuity) but with a different niche, done with trying to upsell skiers 😉

Mark - December 10, 2015

This was a fantastic read, thanks for opening up your funnel. I’m in the process of getting a similar funnel up and running only in a different niche. I’d love to share some ideas with you.

Hans Knol - December 10, 2015

Super good read, thanks so much for sharing! 🙂

    Richard Patey - December 10, 2015

    Thanks Hans 🙂 Are you working on a similar funnel at the moment?

      Hans Knol - December 10, 2015

      Yes we are! Based on the same Trey Lewellen interview and we do a pacifier clip free+shipping, a multiple pacifier clip package up-sell, a membership site and finally a baby shower gift pack up-sell.

      Since we are talking now anyways… I think to remember that Trey gets all his profit out of the membership site and the physical products pay for the ads. Have you tried doubling the price for the $1 up-sell and make it 1,99? And also, before the scraper up-sell, have you considered selling 2, 3, 4, 5, 7 and 10 pieces of wax? The funnel then would be
      1. Free + shipping
      2. 2, 3, 4 or 5 pieces (x $7 a piece) (Trey talks about the power of selling more of what they’ve already purchased)
      3. $ 1,99 scraper (in stead of the $ 1 scraper, try the 1,99 price. A buck here and there makes a big difference!)
      4. continuity program
      5. gift set and change the price from 26,99 to 29,99

      It probably comes down to tons of testing. 🙂

        Richard Patey - December 11, 2015

        Hi, your funnel sounds great, really interested to hear how it converts when you test it.

        I tried to find a low cost ski product that I could offer multiple numbers of but couldn’t see anything better than ski wax where you don’t really need more than 1 at a time (as would likely last all year) but hey people were buying the upsell full service kit too so who knows. Could try charing more on the scraper but I wanted it to be a no brainer into the continuity (only it turned out with the British market that it wasn’t a no brainer!). I did increase the price of the service kit to £29.99 after someone bought one 🙂

Michael Gurevich - February 8, 2017

Did you do Facebook ads to get people into the funnel? Can you elaborate on that?


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