OptimizePress Versus Premise – Which Is Better?

When Kajabi first launched, it seemed to raise the awareness in the market about automated marketing funnel systems. Kajabi was supposed to make squeeze pages, membership sites, all those little technical aspects of online marketing a lot easier. Of course, Kajabi came with a monthly fee. So, it led people to look for alternatives. Sure, enough, there are many of them. I've looked at several of them, including Optimizepress, JVPress and Premise. There are others, too.
Op vs premise

When Kajabi first launched, it seemed to raise the awareness in the market about automated marketing funnel systems. Kajabi was supposed to make squeeze pages, membership sites, all those little technical aspects of online marketing a lot easier.

Of course, Kajabi came with a monthly fee. So, it led people to look for alternatives. Sure, enough, there are many of them. I’ve looked at several of them, including Optimizepress, JVPress and Premise. There are others, too.

The two which get the most “press” seem to be Optimizepress and Premise. And this leads to the natural questions:

  1. What’s the difference between them?
  2. Which is better?

So, I thought I would do my best to answer these questions.

I will tell you, up front, that I personally prefer Optimizepress and have more experience with it. But, I own and have personally used both.


Optimizepress is a Wordpress theme designed to allow you to set up professional squeeze pages, sales pages and membership sites. When this theme is activated, you have a TON of custom page templates to choose from. So, you simply choose the type of page you want. Any page can be either a:

  • Squeeze page
  • Sales page
  • Membership page

Any of these have many variations available. So, you select the type of page you want and then define all the various options for it.

Screen Shot 2011 11 14 at 11 48 15 AM

Aside from the visual elements of Optimizepress, the theme also automates evergreen launches. In other words, you can have a prelaunch sequence set up to run automatically (in conjunction with Aweber or whatever autoresponder you prefer). It takes care of setting the user cookie to ensure people who have opted in already are taken right to the correct page in the launch sequence. If they haven’t opted in yet, it routes them to opt-in first and then sends them on their way.

So, in short, Optimizepress can help you simplify or automate the following:

  • Evergreen launch funnels
  • Squeeze page creation
  • Fully functional membership site (only the theme, not the actual management which would be the job of something like Wishlist Member)
  • Sales page generation
  • All kinds of on-page elements, like video (using included video player), call to action buttons, timed release content, exit pops, etc.

Optimizepress also includes a blog template if you want to run a blog with it, although you might find you want to customize it further since blogs aren’t really what OP was designed for.


Premise is a plug-in for Wordpress. This is one of the most marked differences between the two products. While Optimizepress is a theme, Premise runs as a plug-in which means it can run in conjunction with whatever theme you’ve chosen to run for your site.

Premise is designed mainly for landing pages and squeeze pages. This means that, unlike Optimizepress, Premise does NOT include any membership site features.

Main settings

One thing that Premise does which is unique, though, is the copywriting assistance and web-based copywriting training that comes with it. Basically, they’ve included backend access to some copywriting training and some buttons for 1-click sales templates. I think it is a nice selling point, but not one which will be necessary long-term, in my view. We’re buying a solution, not training, after all.

Premise also has a few things, design-wise, that Optimizepress currently doesn’t, including price comparison tables and tab-styled sales page (where you scroll sideways, similar to what I did on the 3DayMoney sales page). There are ways to do price tables with OP, however it is more of a manual process. As for tabbed sales pages, I find they don’t convert as well anyway, honestly. 🙂 Premise also has a large library of design graphics piped in, and it is updated via their API.

So, Let’s Compare…

As I said before, I prefer Optimizepress and now I’m going to tell you why.

First, if you want to set up evergreen launch funnels, OP can do it and Premise cannot. Technically, you could do it with Premise (since much of it comes down to your autoresponder), but you wouldn’t have the ability to control the flow of the subscriber in that launch sequence.

Second, if you want to do membership sites, the membership site templates of Optimizepress are the best I’ve seen. They are simply awesome and you can make a VERY professional membership site training portal with OP. Premise simply lacks this.

From a technical perspective, the KEY difference is that OP is a theme and Premise is a plug-in. Since you can only have one active theme at a time with Wordpress, you’ll need to set up separate Wordpress installations for different setups with Optimizepress. This is not any kind of problem, however. In fact, when you bring a product to market, you’ll most likely use a separate site anyway.

The only time this might seem annoying is when you simply want a squeeze page on the same domain as your main blog. This is the one point where Premise does make it easier. Being that Premise is a plug-in, it will work along with your blog’s theme. That being said, the pages Premise creates DON’T jive with other themes and the design of your landing page will still be completely different looking than your main blog. Unless you get into some pretty ninja customization, that is.

So, either way, your landing page will look different than your main blog. With OP, you just need a separate WP installation and, with Premise, you don’t.

Which brings me to my last point…

I personally think that the designs of Optimizepress are far more professional looking than those of Premise. The output of Premise looks a bit more amateur, in my opinion. I recognize this is TOTALLY a matter of opinion, so you’ll need to make that call for yourself.

Lastly, I also personally found Optimizepress to be less complicated.

In my view, Premise offers less features for more money. If you value the training that comes with it, then perhaps Premise is a better way to go. If you absolutely insist on trying to do everything on a single Wordpress installation, then Premise is the way to go on that. Otherwise, Optimizepress can do more, looks better, and costs less.

To be clear, Premise starts at $85 – which is cheaper than Optimizepress at $97. However, you only get 6 months of Premise updates unless you pony up $165. With Optimizepress, updates are unlimited.

So, There You Have It

Premise is a good system. I think one of the major competitive advantages of it is that it works in conjunction with any other Wordpress theme. In a world where the 1-click installation of Wordpress is all over the place, though, I really don’t see that as a major draw.

For most setups, Optimizepress outperforms. It does more, looks better, and has features designed for a serious marketer. All in all, it is more affordable, too.

  1. Click Here To Learn More About Premise
  2. Click Here To Learn More About Optimizepress (the one I use)

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  1. What are your thoughts now that OptimizePress has released OP 2.0, including a plugin option, and Premise’s parent, has Genesis 2.0?

  2. Thanks for your breakdown, and I keep getting more confused. I own Premise and it shows this:

    Setting Up Premise Membership [Video]
    How to Set Up a Premise Payment Gateway Plugin [Video]
    How to Protect Your Links and Premium Content [Video]
    How to Convert a Blog Into a Paid Membership Site [Video]
    Setting up Premise Membership Access [PDF]
    What are the steps to setting up a membership site?

    So how is this not membership site features? Or maybe I am misunderstanding?

    What I want to create is a Sales Page/Funnel, preferably with a 3 video Launch (I know OP does this, not sure on Premise) and then have content delivered via a membership or some type of site.

    Some of my program are a 10 audio format, with a downloadable PDF guide with each.

    And, then I also want a “continuity/membership” type program for one which includes my weekly mentoring calls, and added in Evergreen content, delivered over time, based on subscription date.



    Jackie Ulmer

    1. Jackie, the newest version of Premise does do membership sites. The older one didn’t.

      I still prefer OP to Premise, however. You just need a separate package for the membership functionality, such as Wishlist Member.

  3. If you focus on building squeeze page, I’d choose WP Lead Plus (wpleadplus.com) because its editing system is really awesome. I used OptimizePress too. It’s great for general purpose but its learning curve is really high. Now I own both OptimizePress and WP Lead Plus in my blog but most of the time I use WP lead plus

  4. The nice thing about optimizepress is the ready theme . I think premise is design for people who has an existing design and optimizepress who want something new

  5. Hi David. Can I pick your brain just a little bit about Premise 2.0 vs Wishlist? Basically I bought Premise for my membership site and now thinking I should of gone with Wishlist and OP combo instead.

    In a nutshel my problem is this: Premise memberships are controlled by wordpress user accounts that get assigned with the appropriate membership level giving them acces to one or more of the courses that they have purchased.

    If I use and affiliate program to get more sales (looking at JVZoo at the minute) then how does this all work together? Because when a customer buys a product through an affiliate program, that program controls the transaction and the wordpress account creation process is taken out of the equation, therefore no membership level can be set. Copyblogger offer no integration and I can’t see answers to this anywhere.

    So my question really is this… would I have the same issue if I switched to Wishlist to manage the memberships?

    Surely I’m not the only person to find this massive issue!! How do you get round it David?

    Thanks in advance


    1. Hey Nick,
      I think your confusion might be caused by the way JVZoo works. I’ve never used that system. It if processes all the orders for you, then the solution would be an integration so that JVZoo sends an API call back to Wishlist Member with the details for the new member. Then, Wishlist (or Premise) would add it. A quick Google search found this:

      That’s with Wishlist Member. So, that’s how it would work. You would send the new signup through the JVZoo ordering process rather than Wishlist. Then, when you set the product up in JVZoo, you tell it where to send the API call back. By the SKU you give it, it’ll then know what membership to assign to the new member.

      I honestly don’t know if this capability exists with Premise. Wishlist has much better industry support because it is more popular.

      1. Thanks for that David, that really does help. You can see this is my first venture into memberships and affiliates! I take it then from what you said that if I chose a different affiliate network, maybe click bank, that the transaction could get handled by premise/wishlist instead of the affiliate network is that right? I’m thinking that most people wanting to set up a membership site and get affiliates to promote it wouldn’t usually have to go to the lengths of API integration?

  6. Good comparison, David… needs an update now though. Premise 2.0 is out and adds a lot of functionality, including membership sites, dripped content, and securely selling digital products. It’s a big update.

  7. Thanks David this is much appreciated as I’ve just bought OP but was considering Premise for ease of installation. I think I understand how OP works as a membership site but does it just mean that the membership pages are password protected? Also any tips on creating a membership site/portal with a full social community forum package would be really helpful. Is this something that could be connected with OP? Many thanks?

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