A Comparison of the 10 Best Email Marketing Tools

Selecting the best email marketing tools is akin to choosing a business partner: It requires careful consideration of features, user-friendliness, automation capabilities, and cost-effectiveness. (Well, maybe not exactly like choosing a partner….)

From the intuitiveness of platforms like Mailchimp to the advanced analytics of ActiveCampaign, today’s market offers a plethora of choices for every marketer’s unique needs, including the best email marketing tools.

In this guide, we provide a comparison of the ten best email marketing tools available, with standout features and pricing plans.

Kim Cooper
Director of Marketing, Amazon Alexa

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Criteria for Choosing Your Email Marketing Platform

Choosing the right platform for your business’s email marketing strategy involves considering several criteria to ensure the tool fits your marketing goals, audience, and budget. Here’s a list of key criteria to consider:

✅ Features and Functionality:

  • Automation: Look for platforms that offer advanced automation features, such as allowing you to send triggered emails based on subscriber actions or schedules.
  • Segmentation and Personalization: The ability to segment your audience and personalize emails is crucial for targeting specific groups within your subscriber list.
  • A/B Testing: You should be able to test different elements of your emails (like subject lines or content) to see what performs best with your audience.
  • Integration: Make sure the platform integrates seamlessly with your existing tools and systems (CRM, website, social media, etc.).

✅ Ease of Use:

  • User Interface: The platform should have an intuitive interface that makes it easy to create, manage and monitor email campaigns without requiring technical skills.
  • Templates and Design: A good selection of customizable templates and a user-friendly design editor are important for creating engaging emails.

✅ Deliverability: Look for platforms with strong deliverability rates because you want your emails to actually reach your subscribers’ inboxes.

✅ Reporting and Analytics: There should be detailed reports on open rates, clicks, conversions and other metrics that are essential for understanding the effectiveness of your campaigns and making data-driven decisions.

✅ Scalability: The platform should be able to grow with your business, handling an increasing number of subscribers and more complex marketing strategies without a hitch.

✅ Customer Support: Reliable customer support (via email, phone, live chat) is crucial, especially when you encounter issues or have questions.

✅ Compliance and Security: The platform must comply with email regulations (like GDPR, CAN-SPAM Act) and offer robust security measures to protect your data and that of your subscribers.

✅ Pricing: Compare pricing plans to find one that matches your budget and offers good value based on the features and limits (subscribers/emails) you need. Be wary of hidden costs.

✅ Reputation: Research the platform’s reputation and read reviews from other users. A reputable platform can positively influence your deliverability and overall success.

✅ Trial Period or Free Plan: A free trial or plan can help you test the platform to see if it meets your needs before committing financially.

Plus, keep in mind that email marketing tools are continuously evolving, with many of them now boasting AI-driven content optimization and predictive analytics that elevate the personalization and efficacy of campaigns. Advanced features like these not only enhance customer engagement but also drive significant improvements in email marketing ROI.

10 Best Email Marketing Tools

There are many email marketing tools available, each with its own set of features, advantages and pricing structures. The “best” tool often depends on your specific needs and budget.

Below, we’ll take a look at some of the most popular and highly regarded email marketing platforms. Keep in mind that the marketplace can change, so it’s always a good idea to perform your own research or take advantage of free trials when available.

1) Mailchimp

  • Overview: A user-friendly platform that’s great for beginners and small businesses. Offers a wide range of features including automation, segmentation, and analytics.
  • Best For: Small businesses and those new to email marketing.

Mailchimp is widely recognized for its ease of use, making it a go-to email marketing solution for small businesses and beginners.

It offers a comprehensive set of features including email campaign automation, detailed analytics and audience segmentation. Users can easily create engaging emails with the drag-and-drop editor and access a variety of templates suitable for different types of communications.

Mailchimp also supports A/B testing, allowing marketers to refine their strategies for better engagement. Plus, it offers integrations with a vast array of other services across various categories, like ecommerce (Shopify, WooCommerce), CRM (Salesforce, Zoho CRM), social media (Facebook, Instagram), web services and tools (WordPress, Google Analytics), Accounting and Billing Services (QuickBooks, FreshBooks), and more.

The platform provides a free tier with basic features, making it an attractive option for businesses just starting out.

Pricing:

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2) Constant Contact

  • Overview: Known for its excellent customer service, Constant Contact offers a range of easy-to-use tools for email marketing, including social media integrations and event management.
  • Best For: Small to medium-sized businesses looking for support and guidance.

Constant Contact stands out for its exceptional customer support, including live chat, emails and a vast library of resources. It’s designed to be user-friendly, offering a wide range of customizable email templates and a drag-and-drop editor that makes creating campaigns very straightforward.

Beyond email, Constant Contact offers tools for social campaigns, event management and local deals, making it a versatile choice for businesses looking to expand their digital marketing efforts. Its email automation, contact segmentation and reporting tools are robust, providing businesses with the insights needed to optimize their campaigns.

Though it doesn’t have a free plan, its 60-day free trial is one of the longest available, offering ample time to evaluate its features.

Pricing:

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3) Brevo (formerly Sendinblue)

  • Overview: A platform that combines email marketing services with SMS messages and more, offering a flexible pricing model based on the volume of emails sent.
  • Best For: Businesses of all sizes looking for email and SMS marketing solutions.

Brevo, formerly Sendinblue, has a flexible pricing model (including a free plan with unlimited contacts), which charges based on the volume of emails sent rather than the number of contacts in your database, makes it an attractive option for businesses of all sizes. It extends beyond email marketing to offer SMS campaigns, chat functionality and a CRM to manage contacts — all within a single platform.

Brevo’s automation tools enable marketers to create workflows for engaging subscribers at critical points in the customer journey. Its transactional email feature is particularly valuable for e-commerce businesses, making sure that customers receive important notifications about their orders.

The platform also emphasizes GDPR compliance, making it a strong option for businesses operating in or marketing to customers in Europe.

Pricing:

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4) HubSpot

  • Overview: More than just an email marketing tool, HubSpot offers a full suite of marketing, sales and service software that integrates with its free CRM.
  • Best For: Businesses looking for an all-in-one marketing solution.

HubSpot is, of course, best known for its comprehensive suite of marketing, sales and service tools, integrated with a powerful free CRM at its core. This all-in-one approach makes for seamless alignment across all facets of a business’s operations.

The email marketing tool is part of HubSpot’s broader marketing hub and offers advanced features like marketing automation, detailed analytics and personalization options. It’s designed to grow with your business, so it’s ideal for companies planning to scale up their marketing efforts over time.

HubSpot’s emphasis on content creation and management tools also helps businesses attract and retain a loyal audience by delivering timely, relevant content.

Their pricing plans are a little confusing, so I recommend reading this overview, but email hosting is available as part of their Marketing Hub with a free plan.

Pricing:

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5) Campaign Monitor

  • Overview: Offers beautifully designed templates and a simple user interface. Known for its high-quality customer service and powerful automation features.
  • Best For: Businesses that value design and user experience.

Campaign Monitor is celebrated for its beautifully designed templates and intuitive user interface, which allow for the creation of visually appealing emails without needing in-depth technical skills. It offers powerful automation capabilities, which makes it easy for your emails to reach the right people at the right time based on predefined triggers and conditions.

This platform also provides detailed insights into how campaigns are performing, with metrics on opens, clicks and conversions. Their customer service is highly rated and users happily get the support they need so as not to interrupt their email marketing campaigns.

While it’s a bit pricier than some competitors, its design and user experience justify the cost for many businesses.

Pricing:

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6) ActiveCampaign

  • Overview: Focuses on automation and is best known for its advanced workflows, CRM integration, and machine learning capabilities.
  • Best For: Medium to large businesses that require sophisticated automation and segmentation.

ActiveCampaign is distinguished by its advanced automation and CRM capabilities, making it suitable for businesses that want to automate complex customer journeys. Its email marketing tool is integrated with a robust CRM system, enabling businesses to deliver personalized experiences across all customer touchpoints.

The platform’s machine learning features, such as predictive sending and content, optimize the timing and relevance of emails to boost engagement. ActiveCampaign is also known for its detailed reporting and analytics, so you can benefit from deep insights into your campaign performance and customer behaviors.

Its flexibility makes it a strong choice for medium to large businesses that need comprehensive, integrated marketing solutions.

Pricing:

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7) ConvertKit

  • Overview: Designed for creators and bloggers, ConvertKit features a simple interface and focuses on automation and integration with other tools.
  • Best For: Bloggers, creators, and small businesses focused on building an audience.

ConvertKit is tailored for creators and bloggers, with features designed to help them grow and engage their audience. It offers a straightforward user interface and powerful automation tools that simplify the process of sending targeted, personalized emails.

This tool makes it easy to create attractive landing pages and opt-in forms, facilitating audience growth. Its segmentation capabilities are top-notch, which allows creators to send highly relevant content to different segments of their audience based on their interests and interactions.

Although it’s slightly more expensive than some alternatives, ConvertKit’s focus on ease of use and effectiveness makes it a preferred choice for content creators and small businesses focused on building a loyal audience.

Pricing:

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8) AWeber

  • Overview: A reliable and veteran provider in the email marketing space, offering a range of tools designed to integrate with a variety of platforms.
  • Best For: Small businesses and entrepreneurs looking for a straightforward solution.

AWeber is a reliable email marketing tool that has been in the industry for over two decades, known for its ease of use and efficient customer support. It’s particularly well-suited for small businesses and entrepreneurs starting with email marketing.

The platform provides a variety of templates, an intuitive drag-and-drop email editor, and automation capabilities that make it easy to design and send emails. Its autoresponder tool allows users to create automated email sequences, perfect for welcoming new subscribers or nurturing leads. AWeber also provides detailed analytics to track the performance of your emails, including open rates, click-through rates, and sales conversions.

Integration with various platforms such as WordPress, Shopify and Salesforce, enhances its functionality, making it a versatile tool for combining email marketing with other business operations.

Pricing:

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9) GetResponse

  • Overview: Offers a comprehensive suite of features, including email marketing, automation, landing pages, and webinars.
  • Best For: Businesses looking for a multi-functional platform beyond email marketing.

GetResponse is a versatile email marketing tool that offers more than just email campaigns. It’s designed to serve as an all-in-one marketing platform with features including webinar hosting, landing page creation and automated sales funnels.

This software stands out with its advanced automation capabilities, which means that users can quickly create complex, behavior-based workflows to engage subscribers at every step of the customer journey. The platform also offers a comprehensive suite of analytics tools, A/B testing capabilities and list segmentation features, so it’s easy to optimize campaigns for better performance. Its responsive email design means that your emails will look great on any device, enhancing subscriber engagement.

For businesses looking to expand their marketing beyond email, GetResponse provides a range of tools to generate leads and convert them into customers. You can try all features available in standard plans free of charge for 30 days, and no credit card is required.

Pricing:

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10) Klaviyo

  • Overview: Best for e-commerce businesses, Klaviyo integrates deeply with e-commerce platforms and focuses on data-driven email marketing and automation.
  • Best For: E-commerce businesses of all sizes.

Klaviyo is a powerful email marketing platform designed specifically for ecommerce businesses. It specializes in leveraging data to create highly targeted, personalized email campaigns that drive sales and increase customer retention.

It integrates seamlessly with popular ecommerce platforms like Shopify, Magento and BigCommerce (plus with 300+ other apps), pulling in detailed customer data to segment audiences and trigger emails based on shopping behavior, such as abandoned cart recovery and post-purchase follow-up.

Its advanced analytics dashboard provides deep insights into performance metrics, helping businesses understand their ROI and make data-driven decisions. Klaviyo also supports SMS marketing, allowing for cohesive multi-channel marketing strategies that reach customers through their preferred channels.

Pricing:

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Comparison Chart

Determining the absolute best email marketing tool can vary widely depending on specific business needs, budget, industry and desired features. However, based on a combination of popularity, features, versatility and user feedback, three platforms frequently emerge at the top of the list.

Mailchimp:

  • Versatility: Mailchimp serves a wide range of users from beginners to advanced marketers with its easy-to-use interface and comprehensive set of features.
  • Integration: Offers extensive integration options, making it easy to connect with a variety of ecommerce platforms, CRM systems, and other tools.
  • Free Plan: Its robust free plan is especially appealing for small businesses and startups looking to get started with email marketing without initial investment.

ActiveCampaign:

  • Advanced Automation: Known for its sophisticated automation capabilities, ActiveCampaign allows for the creation of complex, behavior-based email sequences.
  • CRM Integration: Offers a seamless blend of email marketing with CRM functionality, enabling businesses to manage customer relationships and marketing from one platform.
  • Personalization: Supports deep personalization and segmentation, helping businesses send highly targeted emails based on user behavior and preferences.

Klaviyo:

  • E-commerce Focus: Klaviyo is highly specialized for e-commerce businesses, offering deep integration with platforms like Shopify, WooCommerce, and BigCommerce.
  • Data-Driven Marketing: Excels in leveraging customer data to create personalized, targeted marketing campaigns that drive sales and customer loyalty.
  • SMS Integration: In addition to email marketing, Klaviyo offers SMS marketing capabilities, providing a unified platform for multi-channel marketing strategies.

Remember, though, the best choice for you will depend on your specific requirements, including your industry, the size of your email list, and your marketing objectives. It’s advisable to take advantage of free trials or demos offered by these platforms to test their features and usability firsthand before making a decision.

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Last Word on Email Marketing Tools

Having the right email marketing tool will help you succeed in your email marketing strategy. While I have highlighted Mailchimp, ActiveCampaign and Klaviyo as top contenders, the best solution for you ultimately depends on your specific business needs.

So when choosing an email marketing tool, consider factors like your business size, industry, budget and email marketing requirements. Many of these platforms offer free plans or trials, so you can test them out before making a decision.

If you’re ready to level up your email marketing, Single Grain’s experts can help!👇

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