Best Email Marketing Tools
Email Marketing is not dead but Growing.
Email Marketing is still very much alive and thriving. Due to the Pandemic (covid-19) most of the people were forced to work from home and as data shows Email has been the preferred way of communication. Here are the best email marketing tools for you to stay in touch with your Customers and share regular updates on your Products and services.
Since my focus has been on sharing tools which are more geared towards Solopreneurs and Small Business Owners, you will find a mix of Free and Paid tools. Basically all Free tools have a Paid version but some are better than the others.
I have an article which presents to you the stats on Email marketing – Follow up more to close sales and one on how you can take the Email Marketing to the next level with Marketing Automation So these points would not be covered in depth here. You can circle back to these articles for the same. This is all about the Best Email Marketing tools you can start using which are free or have a Free Plan and let you scale up.
What does not find a mention in thie Article are 100s of Softwares which are out there some with a free trial and some with Free Plans as well as I am recommending the Best Email Marketing tools based on my consulting experience.
Best Email Marketing Tools - Table of Contents
Tool 01: Mailchimp
Mailchimp has been around for decades and is one of the oldest Email Marketing Tool. They have millions of customers across the Globe and chances are that most of us Marketers (those who started in the early 2000s) started on Mailchimp.
It has a very generous free plan which allows you to store upto 2000 Subscribers for free and send 10000 emails, which translates down to 5 Emails per subscribers if you have 2000 of them.
Even though the look and feel is a little dates and automation pretty elementary it is a good starting point.
Once the 2000 subscribers limit is reached, it becomes expensive pretty quickly.
Mailchimp is great for you in its free tier if you are Solopreneurs and Small Businesses operating in the Niche Segments where you work with limited customers and the 2000 limit would be hard to fill up for you.
Tool 02: Mailerlite
Mailerlite: This has been a favorite of ours for a long time, The free Plan offers 1000 subscribers and 12000 Emails. The Sign up process here is a bit thorough but once you are in, this is an excellent tool for you to use. The designer is excellent, you have the choice of designing stunning looking emails or use the Rich text editor for Plain emails. Automation is decent and would take care of simple scenarios. if this happens then do this, kind of automation.
It has a great Inbox delivery rate as well and overall a very good solution. Once you hit the limit of 1000 Subscribers, it is still affordable and lets you scale nicely. This can be used by any and all irrespective of your list size as the pricing is affordable.
Tool 03: Email Octopus
Email Octopus: Not as well known a brand as the above 2 but extremely powerful tool to use, It comes in 2 Flavors, one where you use your own Amazon SES (Email gateway powered by Amazon which costs 1$ for every 10,000 Emails) and one where you can send emails from Email Octopus gateway.
In my 15+ years as a Marketer, I have always had a great Inbox delivery experience with Amazon SES. so yes, the process of setting it up can be cumbersome to begin with but once you have set it up, it is easy peasy.
Under the Plan where Email Octopus manages everything you get 2500 Subscribers free and 10000 emails a month and if you have your Amazon SES settings you get 2500 Subscribers and unlimited sending.
The Automation features are limited and not as appealing as with some others but you have the most generous free plan.
Tool 04: Send in Blue
Send in Blue: This is one our top pick when it comes to an Email Marketing solution with some excellent features and automation. First and foremost there is no limit on the number of people you can have in your lists, if your lists are well segregated you can have 10,000 Subscribers and still be under the free plan.
The Free offering of Send in blue is only 300 emails a day (which come to around 9000 a month) but with unlimited contacts and a built in basic CRM.
The Automation what they offer along with integration with Facebook Ad’s and re-targeting options is simply amazing. Using their automation builder you can build any automation you want and scale it up to your liking.
The Paid plans are also very affordable if you need more sends.
All in all this is a GREAT TOOL for anyone starting out and the best part it behaves very well with other tools due to a ton of integrations.
Tool 05: Convertkit
Convertkit Converkit prides itself on the fact that they serve the most number of Bloggers and content creators. The Platform has been built to scale up and help content creators. Emails from convertkit also have a very good inbox rate. This has been one of my preferred Platforms for a long time and is used by me for some of my blogs and websites.
They have now a free plan which allows you to have upto 1000 subscribers and free sending (no limit) but with automation features turned off. It is excellent value as you get to start for free and can scale up as you go along.
One of the great features of Convertkit (if you are on a WordPress Website) is their Plugin which makes it easy to plugin Landing Pages directly into your website. This is great as you don’t need to redirect traffic to an outside Landing Page.
Tool 06: Hubspot
Hubspot Traditionally known for its free CRM they also have a complete suite of offerings which go along with the CRM tool and Email Marketing is one of them. Hubspot has been very generous with its CRM tools (if you want you can access my personal getting started guide which I use for all my small business clients) but for Email Marketing for some reason they have capped the limit to 2000 emails a month.
Even tough the limit of 2000 emails a month is low, It makes my list of Best Email Marketing tools because they give you the advantage of doing everything from a Tool. CRM + Email Marketing and all your Data sits nicely under a Single Window. If you are in a Business where you need access to every bit of data under a common window this is a Great tool and if the limit of 2000 Emails is not enough you can always upgrade to the $50 Marketing Starter Plan.
(They also have a Great guide on Email Marketing, which you can read here)
There is no automation in the Free plan.
Tool 07: ActiveCampaign
Active Campaign If there was one Email Marketing tool to rule them all it would have to be active campaign. If you are someone who would greatly benefit by automation and want a built in CRM tool as well, then Active Campaign is where you should stop your search.
One of the most robust features of Active Campaign has to be their Automation builder with Lead Scoring, if you can think of a scenario you can create it with Active Campaign. They do not have a Free tier and the entry level Paid tear is affordable with limited automation, once you start growing your Contacts and need more automation you can upgrade to the next plan and unlock all the Automation features.
If given a choice between Active Campaign and Hubspot since both have CRM + Marketing, ActiveCampaign delivers more bang for the buck.
All the tools mentioned here have been used by us for extented period of time, either for us or for our Clients. The Criteria for making the cut to this list of Best Email Marketing tools was that they should have a free tier or have features which even at a Paid price were extremely good value for money and Integrate with other Tools.
All the Tools mentioned here would integrate nicely with other Tools via Zapier which would automate the process for you and not need a manual entry for data to flow freely.
If you are looking for a Great robust free solution which can help you when you are getting started then it has to be Mailerlite or Send in Blue. With an Advantage towards Send in Blue as the Automation builder is amazing.
If you want to unlock some great features and want full scale automation then the choice rests with Send in Blue or Active Campaign with an advantage towards Active Campaign even though it is a little expensive.
We hope this helps you make a decision.