These Mailchimp competitors might be more suitable for your small business

· 14 min read · August 26th, 2020
Mailchimp. In the email marketing world, there’s no getting around this name. They have done a great job securing their spot in the email world. But that doesn’t mean they are the right fit for every business! In fact, there are several Mailchimp competitors that could be better suited for your small business.

If you’re reading this and you’re having doubts about whether Mailchimp is the best email marketing service for you—this is your cue to take a deep breath and smile! We’ll show you the best Mailchimp competitors are out there, and how they compare and differ from each other.

By the end of this read, you’ll know what to look for in an email marketing tool and which Mailchimp competitor is the best choice to bring your business forward.

Why you need email marketing to build your audience

There are many ways to start a conversation with your audience online. You can engage via Facebook, talk on Twitter, or communicate through Instagram posts and stories. All of these channels work to increase engagement, but often just for a short while.

Email marketing is different. It allows you to make a more personal connection with your audience over a long period of time.

When you collect people on an email list, your email lands directly in the reader’s inbox. The chances of readers seeing your message are way higher than if you’re relying on social media algorithms to put your brand in front of your audience’s eyes.

With email marketing, you have the opportunity to build strong and long-lasting relationships. 

What are email software providers (ESPs)?

Most email services started with a basic concept: a builder to create, send, and schedule email marketing campaigns and subscriber management options to segment your audience.

Over the years, we’ve seen many email tools advance into full-fledged marketing platforms. Apart from just managing your email marketing campaigns, you can now run almost your entire marketing with these email marketing platforms. 

For example, with services like ConvertKit, you can build dedicated landing pages to attract people to sign up for your list. With MailerLite, you can even create entire, customizable websites with a blog. And Mailchimp offers the service to send real postcards to customers. 

Email tools are not solely about emails anymore.

Your email marketing service can be as simple or complex as you need it to be, which is what makes picking the right one so hard. The best way to start is by understanding what features you need your email tool to have.

What to consider when looking at Mailchimp competitors

When searching for Mailchimp competitors for your email marketing, you first need to know what you need from an email tool. To find out, we’ve prepared a couple of questions for you with some example answers:

Questions to ask to find the right Mailchimp competitor

Let’s role play! To help illustrate, we’ll answer the questions as a fictional e-commerce business that sells scented candles and linen sprays. This will give you an idea of how to answer the questions for your own small business.

What are my marketing goals?

To collect 1000 email signups by January 1st and create an automatic upsell email sequence that activates when customers complete the purchase of a scented candle.

Who is my audience, and what are their needs?

Women between 20-60 years old who like wellness, self-care, interior design, and visually appealing accessories and items.

What’s my list size?

I’m just starting my email marketing efforts, so I need a tool that’s user-friendly and helps me grow my list (landing page feature, content about list growth strategies).

What’s most important for me when creating email newsletters?

The newsletters need to be easy to create (drag and drop editor) and look visually appealing (email templates). I want to form personal relationships and need engagement elements, like survey blocks and quizzes. I also need my designs to look good on all devices (responsive).

What type of regular email campaigns do I plan to send and how often?

I plan to send a regular email campaign once a week.

What email automation do I want to use?

I’ll use transactional emails for upselling after customers purchase a product and have an automated welcome discount sequence for new subscribers to build relationships.

Do I need any integrations? I need the email tool to work with my Squarespace website and online shop.
What do I want to track and analyze in the reports?

I want to see the opens, email engagement, and survey responses in the reports.

Are there any other features I need from the email service provider besides email campaigns?

I want to create landing pages to announce contests and promote seasonal campaigns.

How much support do I expect from the email software?

I want to have email support and live chat available, as well as help articles, beginner guides and video tutorials.

What’s my budget?

Free or less than $10 a month, to get started. If my list grows bigger I can spend up to $60 dollar a month on the email software.

7 Mailchimp competitors to look into

Though there are many different Mailchimp competitors, we will go into the most popular ones with the best customer reviews and briefly explain their main benefits, support options and pricing.


1. MailerLite

Best Mailchimp competitor because: MailerLite offers landing pages, websites, in-email surveys/quizzes and marketing automation (even on free plans). Many find MailerLite’s interface easier to navigate than Mailchimp’s, and also its list management features are way more simple and advanced. Compared to Mailchimp, this competitor is also significantly cheaper. You first start paying from 1,000 subscribers onwards and their plans start at $10 a month. See MailerLite's full pricing details here.

Online reviews, like this one from Email Vendor Selection, love MailerLite's simplicity. "It’s very easy to use (Mailchimp users will feel right at home) and at the same time, you can do quite advanced things." 

And if you can't figure something out, there's always their outstanding day-and-night support that’s available for every customer—both free and paid.

Maybe not for you when: Your business is in the adult, gambling or any illegal industry, you're an affiliate marketer or you run a multi-level marketing (MLM) business. MailerLite's approval process is strict, as it's their way to keep spammers out the door and email deliverability for all customers high.

Support: 24/7 email support, and live chat for paid plans.

Pricing: Free up to 1,000 subscribers.


2. ActiveCampaign

Best Mailchimp competitor because: ActiveCampaign offers powerful automation, free migration and advanced reporting. It’s a great tool for people that mainly focus on CRM and sales, as it allows you to set campaign goals to track (like sign-ups or page views). Their performance assessments integrate social and behavioral data and their features are solid, including things like split testing and remarketing.

Maybe not for you when: You love simplicity and ease of use. You might have trouble finding features and it can be challenging to find your way around. ActiveCampaign's dashboard can feel overwhelming at first and the tool isn't super user-friendly.

Support: Live chat and email support available on weekdays from 8 AM to 4 PM CST.

Pricing: $70 for up to 1,000 subscribers (limited features).



3. ConstantContact

Best Mailchimp competitor because: ConstantContact is a good fit for niches and has shown high email deliverability rates. It’s beginner-friendly, has a mobile app, offers integrations with 450 apps and their customer support is one of the main reasons why people prefer this competitor over Mailchimp. Constant Contact also offers live classes across North America, in addition to online educational resources.

Maybe not for you when: You're on a budget. From all Mailchimp alternatives, this email software is priced on the higher end. Their plans start at $20 a month (and this plan only includes 500 subscribers).

Support: Email, live chat and phone support on weekdays and limited support on weekends.

Pricing: $45 for up to 1,000 subscribers.



4. Sendinblue

Best Mailchimp competitor because: Sendinblue offers low-cost plans, which is great for sending bulk emails. They make it easy to set up automation triggers for workflows and are known for their email marketing automation. Customers are charged for the amount of emails they send, not the subscribers (which can be beneficial, depending on the situation). Like Mailchimp, they also offer SMS marketing.

Maybe not for you when: You enjoy email templates. Sendinblue's template gallery is known to be rather basic and a lot smaller than what Mailchimp offers. If you rather rely on predefined designs that look amazing, this tool might not your best shot.

Support: Email, live chat and phone support on weekdays and limited support on weekends.

Pricing: Free up to 40,000 emails per month.



5. AWeber

Best Mailchimp competitor because: Aweber has been around for decades and is most praised for its list management and sales tracking features. In comparison to Mailchimp, there are a lot more email templates available in AWeber. Their gallery contains over 700 templates, compared to the 100+ that Mailchimp offers.

Maybe not for you when: You want to get the most value for your money. AWeber is great but known to be on the pricier side. Other email tools, such as MailerLite, offer similar features for less money.

Support: 24/7 live chat and email support, phone support during weekdays from 8 AM to 8 PM ET.

Pricing: $29 for up to 1,000 subscribers.



6. ConvertKit

Best Mailchimp competitor because: ConvertKit’s landing pages and signup forms are popular—especially amongst bloggers, podcasters and publishers. They focus heavily on text-based emails, as they believe these convert best. Compared to Mailchimp, ConvertKit is far easier to get the hang of and customers rave about their list management options and detailed reports.

Maybe not for you when: You want to test your email performance. ConvertKit's A/B testing feature is limited to testing two versions of a subject line, whereas other Mailchimp alternatives offer A/B tests for email content, preheaders and sender names as well.

Support: 24/7 live chat and email support for paid plans. 

Pricing: $29 for up to 1,000 subscribers.



7. GetResponse

Best Mailchimp competitor because: GetResponse stands out because of their advanced automation for email lists, landing page editor and design A/B testing. They also have a unique tool that can create marketing tracks for webinars. GetResponse makes it easy to send emails to more segments at once, whereas Mailchimp only allows one segment per email newsletter. With a bit of luck, international customers can use their software in their own language, as it’s available in 27 languages.

Maybe not for you when: You love a good user interface. GetResponse isn't a popular choice when it comes to their email editor, as many say it's outdated, clunky and sometimes a little buggy and slow.

Support: 24/7 live chat and email support.

Pricing: $15 for up to 1,000 subscribers.


What Mailchimp competitor should I choose?

The MailChimp competitor you pick depends on what you need! (You might even decide to go for Mailchimp after reading about the alternative software tools). In the table below, we've listed the pricing and features from Mailchimp and the seven alternative email tools we discussed above, so you can easily compare them.

Pricing MailerLiteMailerLite MailChimpMailChimp Campaign MonitorActive Campaign Constant ContactConstant Contact sendinbluesendinblue AweberAWeber ConvertKitConvertKit GetResponseGetResponse
Up to 1,000 subscribers FREE FREE $70, limited features $45 starting from $25 $29 $29 $15
Up to 5,000 subscribers $30 $59, limited features $169, limited features $65 starting from $25 $49 $79 $45
Features MailerLiteMailerLite MailChimpMailChimp Campaign MonitorActive Campaign Constant ContactConstant Contact sendinbluesendinblue AweberAWeber ConvertKitConvertKit GetResponseGetResponse
Drag & drop editor Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Automation Yes Yes Yes Ne Yes Yes Yes Yes
Segmentation Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Personalization Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Auto resend Yes No No Yes No No Yes Yes
Pop-ups Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes
Landing pages with custom domains FREE Landing Pages. Custom domains included in Premium plans. $99/year No No Yes No Yes Yes
RSS campaigns Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes
E-commerce campaigns Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Unsubscribe page builder Yes No No No Yes No No No
Video block in email Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes
Interactive surveys in emails Yes No No Yes No No No No
Deliver by time zone Yes Yes Yes No No Yes No Yes
Click map Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes

Though many email marketing software offer similar features and services, each one has its own focus and strong points. Some email marketing solutions do better when it comes to support, others have more comprehensive automation tools. On your must-have list, you might want a great drag and drop editor, a wide selection of newsletter templates or advanced reporting.

The key to picking the best Mailchimp alternative is to match the competitor’s offer with your needs and see which one fulfills most of your requirements. Then check if the email software offers a free plan or trial, so you can play around and get more familiar with the tool.

Good luck!

Have you used any of these Mailchimp competitors? Tell us your experience in the comments.