Regardless of how large or small your company is, you cannot afford to ignore all the benefits that come with marketing, even if it does cost you money. Even if you have a great product or service on your hands, it will be practically worthless until you get in front of the eyes of your target audience. One of the most efficient ways to do that is through email marketing. Even though every now and then someone will come out and proclaim email dead or obsolete, it is even more relevant today, especially when used as a marketing tool.
Let’s look at the numbers first. Over 269 billion emails were sent and received daily back in 2017, and the number is projected to reach as many as 333 billion in 2022. If you are working in IT or doing any kind of desk job, you are more than aware of how many emails you send and receive each day. In fact, there will be days where they will eat up a significant chunk of the hours you have worked. But, in addition to being as essential as ever, email marketing is also the best form of marketing, if we were to look at ROI.
For every $1 you invest into email marketing, you will get $32 back, according to research, which is much more than you would get with any other type of marketing. Of course, in order to enjoy the benefits of email marketing, you need to build your email lists, and for that, you will need email marketing tools. One of the most commonly used is MailChimp, which comes equipped with email, CRM, testing, as well as many other features.
However, since you don’t get all the features with a free version, and because their pricing plans are not very flexible, some of its alternatives may suit your email marketing campaign better. We have chosen 10 tools, so go on and take a look.
Unlike MailChimp and its rigid pricing plans, SendinBlue provides you with a bit more flexibility. For starters, its free plan allows you to add an unlimited number of contacts, which is great. However, there is a catch. While you can add as many contacts as you want, you can only send out 300 emails per day using a free plan. If you are emailing your target audience on a regular basis, such as students looking to pay for paper assignments, this may not be the best option for you. However, SendinBlue does come with some great features.
First of all, there is the WordPress plugin, which is not something you get with MailChimp. Also, its analytics tools are a bit more user-friendly and easy to use. Second, it allows you to create email campaigns very quickly, thanks to its HTML editor and newsletter builder. Third, you can easily set up email autoresponder campaigns. Last but not least, their customer support is pretty agile, in case you have issues with the application. The pricing range is great, but keep in mind that there are differences in features between the plans.
If you are looking for an email marketing tool which allows you to make the most out of your shoe-string budget, without sacrificing any of the key features you need, then you may want to look into Moosend. As advertised, its free plan allows you to use the application for free, forever. It doesn’t allow for the same number of subscribers as MailChimp (1000 as opposed to MailChimp’s 2000), but it does offer a full list of features, which is pretty amazing. You can pretty much use all of them for free, for as long as you want. Another thing you get as a free user is unlimited segmentation.
As far as paid plans are concerned, Moosend is still about 30% cheaper than the equivalent MailChimp plan, which makes it especially convenient for small businesses which are just starting out or for individuals, such as essay writers or bloggers. When it comes to features, apart from the already mentioned segmentation, Moosend comes with a powerful campaign editor, free newsletter templates for all occasions, real-time analytics feature, and it also allows you to integrate all of the apps and services you use in your campaigns.
Sendy has plenty of things going for it, but two of its main advantages are its pricing and its privacy-oriented approach. Both advantages are due to the fact that Sendy is an application that you get to install on your own local server, which means it will cost you a lot less in the long run. Apart from the one-time fee, you will only have to pay $0.0001 for every email you send. In other words, it will cost you only $1 to send out 10000 emails.
After installing Sendy on your service, you will create emails and newsletters using its intuitive environment which resembles a test editor, after which you will connect to Amazon SES to send the emails. Sendy’s notable features include mass import and deletion of subscribers, creation of custom fields, thank you/goodbye emails, and automatic handling of bounce and unsubscribe actions. On top of that, you also get access to advanced analytics and reporting. In short, it is perfect if you have a lot of subscribers.
Although HubSpot’s primary function isn’t that of an email marketing platform, it does have some useful email features that make it an interesting choice for your email campaigns. Hubspot offers email marketing as part of its full automation suite, and because of its modular architecture, you can pick the services that you need. When used as an alternative to MailChimp, it allows you to introduce behavioral triggers into your email campaign, based on the actions of your target audience. In other words, you can send out autoresponder emails to your subscribers in case they have visited a specific page on your website or abandoned their shopping cart.
Other advantages include free trial service and lots of support and education. However, HubSpot requires you to opt for a 12-month contract, which can be expensive. Also, some of the features, such as A/B testing, are available only in the most expensive packages. In addition to that, if you need technical support, you will have to pay for a premium plan.
In terms of pricing and features, AWeber is pretty similar to MailChimp, and when it comes to features, they offer more of the same, at least at first glance. So why should you consider AWeber? The key difference is that AWeber allows you to include affiliate links in your emails, whereas MailChimp bans most of them. As far as pricing plans are concerned, there are no free ones, but you do get a 30-day free trial, after which you can choose one of the existing paid plans, with their prices being directly proportional to the number of subscribers.
If you decide to purchase one of the premium plans, you do get access to autoresponder features, segmentation, over 6,000 stock images you can use in your emails, as well as over 700 email templates, and integration with the most commonly used services and apps. If affiliate links are really important to you, but you want the same kind of functionality as you would get with MailChimp, AWeber might just be what you are looking for.
Omnisend is probably the most complete and versatile tool on this list. Whereas MailChimp is just an email marketing tool, Omnisend is a marketing tool which allows you to include several marketing channels into one automated workflow. Still, the core functionality of this application is still email marketing, and it does it really well. Omnisend comes with a visual editor that supports drag-and-drop functionality, which makes it possible for you to adjust or change pretty much every element of your email. Of course, it comes with a wide variety of pre-designed templates, which makes your job even easier.
But, as nice as its visuals are, Omnisend’s main strength is automation and segmentation. As far as the latter is concerned, it enables you to segment your customers based on a variety of criteria, including their shopping behavior, campaign engagement, and profile data. It also comes with live website tracking, 24/7 customer service, and A/B testing testing features.
If you consider yourself a creator, such as bloggers, artists, DIY artisans, or online course creators, then you will want to check out ConvertKit, because it was designed with creators in mind. ConvertKit’s party piece is its visual interface which enables you to build automation flows is a way that is really intuitive. It also allows for effective segmentation/tagging. In terms of price, it’s not among the cheapest, but it is worth your consideration if you fall among its intended audience.
As far additional features are concerned, ConvertKit comes with a selection of well-designed forms, detailed subscriber management, and integration of other tools and functionalities, such as Facebook Lead Ads with Zapier. Again, its strong suit is its visual editor that is aimed at creative types looking to build automation flows.
Another commonly used MailChimp alternative is Constant Contact, which is built by a company that has been in the marketing business for over 20 years. Like some of the other apps on this list, Constant Contact comes with a user-friendly visual editor which allows you to drag-and-drop elements and create your email that way. In addition to that, it also offers features such as polls, surveys, events, and coupons, among others. It also excels when it comes to stuff like subject line testing.
On the flip side, if you are looking for advanced autoresponder features and storage options, you might not find them here. Its main strength is its detailed segmentation, which enables you to assign tags to your customers, and figure out how they found your business, whether they are loyal customers or not, and what kind of products they are usually buying. Location-based segmentation is also supported.
If you are a WordPress user and you like the idea of managing your email marketing campaigns from your WordPress dashboard, then you will definitely like MailPoet. It is basically a WordPress plug-in which offers the same kind of functionality as MailChimp. For starters, it offers the same number of subscribers (2000), but it does so without limiting the number of emails you send out. However, you will need to rely on a separate sending service for that, such as Amazon SES.
If you opt for a one-time fee, you will have to pay about $1 for every 10,000 emails, in case you go with Amazon SES. There is also the option of paying a monthly or yearly fee, in which case MailPoet will handle the sending of your emails. Additional stuff includes a choice over 70 themes, analytics, newsletter designed for mobile devices, list segmentation, single and double opt-in, and autoresponders.
10. Campaign Monitor
If you are looking for a cheaper alternative to MailChimp, Campaign Monitor may not be the best option, but if you want an email marketing that will provide you with advanced automation and email personalization, they it’s definitely worth a look. Similar to ConvertKit, which we have already covered on this list, Campaign Monitor enables you to create automated workflows inside an easy-to-use editor. On top of that, the entire user interface of the application is great-looking, which is definitely worth the extra cost.
Although this app allows you to create a free account, you will be required to upgrade to a paid plan for more than 5 subscribers. Pricing plans vary in both price and number of subscribers. Campaign Monitor provides you with detailed information on every subscriber, and its segmentation is so detailed that it allows you to send emails to each individual subscriber’s at their optimal times. And when it comes to analytics, they are just as detailed as segmentation.
Coming up with an effective marketing campaign is just as important as having a great product or service you can offer to your target audience, and email marketing should be a part of every single one of the campaign efforts. It offers a great return on your investment, and when it comes to tools, you don’t have to just rely on one. Yes, MailChimp is great, but that doesn’t mean that it’s necessarily the best tool for your email marketing campaigns. Fortunately, there are plenty of others you can choose from.
We hope that this article will help you make that choice, Good luck!