Meet Mailchimp, the biggest player in the email marketing space.
For years they've been dominating email marketing, and are a favorite amongst many marketers for their ease-of-use functionality and scaled pricing structure (allowing small and large list marketers alike to utilize the platform affordably).
In the same way that Shopify dominates in the e-commerce space, Mailchimp does the same in the email marketing space!
While Mailchimp pricing is quite affordable on the whole - many marketers still desire a better "bang for their buck" so to speak.
With some Mailchimp alternatives that exist out there, you may be able to cut costs depending on your list size and email sending requirements. Before we get into the alternatives, however, let me give a quick overview of Mailchimp's pricing models:
Mailchimp comes with 3 different base pricing structures, the Free, Grow and Pro plans, respectively.
The free plan will allow you to send at most 12,000 total emails to 2,000 subscribers per month. While this sounds great, it's really not a viable option for the professional marketer as these emails will come with ads for mailchimp, which deteriorates the validity of your online marketing efforts.
That leaves us with the Grow and Pro plan, which both scale up the total cost with more and more subscribers that you're marketing to (also included is unlimited emails per month to those subscribers).
In comparison with some other alternatives, Mailchimp is actually on the pricier end.
Still though, if you know what you're doing with email marketing, you should be able to turn a profit easily with the amount of subscribers that you get with MailChimp at the various pricing levels.
You can even use a free website builder such as Wix, WordPress or Squarespace to bootstrap an online income by collecting leads for free! If you're willing to spend a little bit of cash too, then you can find some even better options than the ones listed above!
Free lead collection is also a good idea no matter what kind of online business you're attempting. Shopify store owners should be creating content on their website and getting free traffic - why not use an amazing email marketing platform to collect leads from there?
Another way to get started at zero cost (great for beginners), is to use online marketplaces to sell goods/services online. This requires no email marketing knowledge (or real business knowledge for that matter). Just provide a solution to a niche need on places such as Etsy, Ebay, Fiverr, etc. and you can make a good enough income to get started online!
For a full breakdown of the various features included with each of the Mailchimp pricing plans, then go to this page on their website.
Now, let's go ahead and unveil some of my top picks for Mailchimp alternatives that you can utilize in order to save money (while possibly having a better overall software experience with better ease of use and functionality)!
Another favorite amongst internet marketers is the GetResponse platform (especially for their profoundly easy-to-use automation and list segmentation features).
With the pro account, you're also getting access to unique top-notch features such as a solid landing page creation tool and webinar editor.
What I find best about using GetResponse is the ease with which I can navigate the platform. For marketers looking to do simple email marketing, this is an ideal platform because it's easy to get started for beginner marketers, has tons of online tutorials to help you figure out small kinks, fast 24/7 online live chat support, and a simple dashboard.
Similar to MailChimp, GetResponse offers a "free trial" for people wanting to test drive their software. With the free trial, you can import 1,000 contacts and send unlimited mail to those contacts for 30 days (no ads, free of charge service offered by GetResponse).
After the 30 days, it's $15/month for that flat service that you got with the free trial. There are add-ons that you can also purchase such as collaboration (multiple people can work on your mailing campaigns), landing pages, and webinar attendee limits.
Like most other mailers, the price you pay will also scale with the amount of contacts that you are mailing to.
Overall, GetResponse is one of the best mailing solutions for email marketers worldwide, and I highly endorse it as an adequate alternative to the MailChimp platform!
Another great option is the Aweber platform. They also offer a 30 day free trial for their services.
From my conversations and interactions in the IM niche, it's the go-to choice for many in the industry.
I don't know if this is due to the name recognition and brand establishment over the years, but Aweber certainly does the trick for beginner to advanced marketers regardless of the niche that they're in.
Aweber offers many of the same features as top email platforms, along with an easy-to-use visual editor and online dashboard, making it ideal for beginners to use.
Aweber is noticeably outstanding in mobile lead generation. They offer an Atom app within the mailer which allows marketers to collect emails at the point of purchase. For savvy marketers, this will allow them to drastically increase the money they're able to squeeze from each sale that they're generating.
With the free 30-day trial you can try the base $19/month plan that Aweber offers for free. Then, as you can see in the image above, they scale their pricing with the amount of subscribers you add to the account.
What must also be noted is the great analytics, stock photos, and customer support from Aweber. This is a mailer I've used in the past, and I've had a great overall experience from them across the board!
ActiveCampaign's main selling point is their powerhouse automation features. Many users remark on the automation technology that ActiveCampaign brings to the user, which is backed by expert testing and insights.
You're able to create long strings of automation messages with options such as "wait x number of days before sending" as well as the ability to easily split test messages and headlines to find the best converting emails (thus growing your business in the process).
Overall I think ActiveCampaign is one of the best tools for digital marketers to utilize to grow their income and business.
They do start at only $9 though (for the most basic package). As you can see above, the various package levels will give you more and more features to utilize within the platform. I direct you here for further information on pricing (note, these are just the base packages, you still pay for the number of contacts that you're adding to the system).
A relatively new player to the email marketing space (founded in 2013), ConvertKit has a special bond and focus towards digital marketers.
Overall, many of the other marketing platforms on this list are more mature and generalized, but that might be a great reason to go with ConvertKit due to its hyper-focus on it's target audience and need to appease the digital marketing crowd.
They've amassed over 35,000 subscribers in the past few years, which is actually great for how long they've been in the space!
Their automation platform is super easy to use, which actually gives them an edge over Mailchimp for beginners. Furthermore, many users feel as if they automation system set up in ConvertKit is one of the best amongst email platforms, which allows for some of the best-targeted campaigns possible for users!
Slightly on the more pricier end, ConvertKit doesn't compete well with other marketing platforms with price. It costs $29 for the base plan, and this scales all the way up to thousands of dollars per month (depending on the amount of subscribers you have).
Still though, as I mentioned previously, if you are a good marketer with the fundamentals of email marketing in place, you should easily make a large profit margin by using any of these platforms.
You can, however, pick up a free trial to try the software free for 14 days!
Up next is the Drip email marketing platform. This email marketing company is a favorite amongst internet marketers, and for good reason! It's one of the best visual editors for automation, newsletters, list segmentation, and "visualizing the customer journey".
Drip provides tons of data and insight into what happens when someone receives your email (such as where they clicked, how many pages they viewed, etc.). This data can be crucial to the marketer who's willing to take advantage of it, which is why Drip is one of my favorite platforms to utilize to increase ROI and make more profitable campaigns for the business I'm working on.
Drip is a much more robust marketing platform than Mailchimp, and the sheer amount of integrations (over 100 integrations) that you can utilize within the platform to enhance your marketing efforts gives it the edge against most competitors.
Furthermore, they've got some groundbreaking technology with Facebook lead collection and utilizing custom audiences to blow up campaigns (and make massive ROI in the process). If you're looking to make money with Facebook ads, then Mailchimp really can't even compete with the technology that Drip has going for it.
I'm really high on this platform, in case you can't tell!
There's just one issue, the pricing.
Compared to other email marketing platforms mentioned on this list, Drip is much more expensive. It's $49 for the base plan, which will allow you to send unlimited emails to 2,500 subscribers. From there, it goes up and up (this base plan is already more expensive than most other mailchimp alternatives, but it continues to scale disproportionately to the alternatives also).
As you can see above, Drip definitely costs more than other platforms. However, I still believe it's one of the best platforms for marketers to use for their business, and I stand by that 100%!
One of the most popular email marketing softwares on the planet, Constant Contact puts the user experience first.
It's user-friendly dashboard and functionality aids beginner to intermediate marketers in quickly setting up campaigns, creating stunning emails in a neat visual editor, and executing profit generating activities quickly and efficiently!
You get standard A/B testing and autoresponder functions with the platform, but something I found neat was the automatic segmentation features such as sending emails to users on their birthday. Furthermore, emails are sent out on trasactional triggers, which can be utilized to generate more profit for the savvy marketer.
List segmentation and analytics are very functional within the platform. However, some minor drawbacks are the limited number of email templates and lacking customer support. Overall, it's a very solid platform.
What users really love about this platform is the free 60 day trial that you get with it (a rare thing to find with most software companies today).
The plans they offer are also quite affordable, with the base plan being $20/mo for up to 500 subscribers. This scales according to list size, and competes nicely with other top email alternatives on this list.
Next is the iContact email marketing solution for business owners.
There are lots of template to utilize with this platform, and iContact makes it easy for your to navigate and execute campaigns with a smooth user interface and dashboard.
Furthermore, the customer service of iContact is really, really good! Apparently most users find that the customer service is friendly and solves issues in a really short period of time, a plus when using any product/service on the planet!
The only real negative thing that people consistently state about the platform is the lack of 3rd party integrations (you can integrate with some, but not nearly as many as other top platforms such as Drip).
Overall, it's a solid, cheap platform for users to use to grow their business!
Robly is one of the more user-friendly marketing platforms that's available to consumers today, but that's not really what their main selling point is.
Robly claims to increase open rates by 50%!
That's a big guarantee to live up to, and one that I was skeptical of at the start. However, it seems that users agree that Robly does a great job at actually increasing the amount of open rates that their business receives. They've effectively backed up what they preach!
Robly utilizes advanced data science to deliver emails with subject lines that are designed to get users to open them, and it will resend emails that aren't opened to try and entice further open rates.
Now, the verdict is still out as to whether or not these open rates will effectively yield more profits, as we can't say that these open rates will constitute more action taking by the user. However, I firmly believe that having high open rates will certainly give you further chances to convert customers!
Robly is also fairly affordable for the user, with a $15/mo entry price for lists sizes up to 500 contacts. This is certainly in competition with other alternatives on this list.
I think that if you're really into digging deep into your automation campaigns to eek out profits, then you should definitely give Robly a try for your business. Data science is really the future, and getting in on the best technology gives your business the best chance at growing!
This platform is more than just email. You get access to a few different marketing channels to grow your business with SendPulse, with web push, transactional emails, and SMS notifications, you get a multitude of tools that can get people to take action!
I think this is a great tool for business owners relying on web content, as the push notification feature gets users comming back again and again to your website, thus having more opportunities for converting loyal subscribers into loyal customers!
Like Robly, they also utilize data science to increase open rates, and users love their drag-n-drop email creation dashboard and templates. Standard features such as A/B testing, list segmentation, automation, etc. are also present with the email marketing side of Send Pulse!
What's also neat is that SendPulse is free for up to 2,500 subscribers/mo! I think this is because they hold less market share than their competitors, so they have to differentiate their pricing a bit in order to gain subscribers.
Therefore, I recommend you take action fast and get on the platform while you can still send these notifications for free!
SparkPost's main selling point is that they're highly focused on transactional emails (making this a great option for e-commerce business owners).
It has a great API capability which allows users to implement them on their website for a multitude of functions. It's commonly ranked as one of the best email marketing platforms for delivering emails safely to your customer's inbox.
Overall, it's a great alternative to Mailchimp because of its affordability and features!
Now that I've laid out 10 great alternatives to the Mailchimp email platform, it's time for you to make a decision on which platform you want to utilize for your business.
While I believe Mailchimp is a good company and provides great value for their customers, I think there are also some better solutions for the more focused and cost conscious marketers out there.
Platforms such as Aweber, GetResponse, Drip, and Constant Contact are some of my top picks, but I think there are merits of the other platforms mentioned in this list that could improve your profit margins, if you know what you're doing (look at some top training by ClickFunnels, called Funnel Hacks, to get some insight into starting an amazing online business)!
Overall though, the success of your business is going to depend much more on your value-driving activities and your established expertise at what you do, much more so than what email platform you're using!
I'd also recommend you check out some of my other posts to get trials to amazing software products that can help you expand or start a business online. In this day and age, everyone can get started with making money online, and it's all the rage these days!
So, which platform are you going to use? Let me know in the comments below!