Want to grow your business? You need email marketing software that’s easy to use, affordable, and effective – a tool that will nurture leads and convert subscribers into customers.
With an overwhelming 670+ options to choose from, finding the best software for marketing your business via email can be anything but simple. But we’re here to help at least make it painless.
We surveyed 1,782 marketers, from small business owners to Fortune 500 CMOs, in order to discover which email marketing software they use – and why.
Here’s our verdict on the 10 Best Email Marketing Tools for 2023:
- ActiveCampaign – Best for small to medium-sized businesses
- HubSpot – Best for B2B service companies
- Sendinblue – Best for transactional email
- Campaign Monitor – Best for basic email marketing needs
- Omnisend – Best for e-commerce businesses
- ClickFunnels – Best for coaches, consultants and online courses
- Benchmark – Best for small agencies
- Constant Contact – Best for non-profits
- MailerLite – Best for beginners
- EmailOctopus – Best for web developers
We’ve uncovered the strengths and weaknesses of these popular email marketing services in 9 key areas – cost, deliverability, integrations, ease of use, reporting, security, advanced features, CRM, and support.
Read on to finally find the optimal tool for your email marketing efforts.
With over 150,000 customers, it’s not surprising that ActiveCampaign was the most commonly mentioned tool in our survey of email marketing software options for 2023.
ActiveCampaign has earned its reputation as a leading marketing automation tool by focusing on building a world-class product that provides multiple solutions for B2C, B2B, and e-commerce businesses from around the globe.
ActiveCampaign’s automation builder is as simple to use as a flowchart or mindmap
It’s by far the most advanced email marketing platform on our list, with machine learning and predictive tools enabling marketers to work smarter and deliver higher ROI.
Often credited with pioneering visual marketing automation, ActiveCampaign is impressively intuitive and easier to use than some tools on our list.
ActiveCampaign’s intelligent and responsive email marketing designer
ActiveCampaign also provides exceptional deliverability rates (>99%), integrates with 870+ third-party tools, and goes above and beyond with its security and compliance measures.
ActiveCampaign offers 870+ integrations, including Salesforce, Shopify, Google Sheets, & Slack
As an all-in-one marketing tool, ActiveCampaign comes with a built-in CRM system to manage your sales, live chat, and of course, email campaigns.
A built-in sales CRM connects with ActiveCampaign’s powerful automation engine
You might think all these features come at a hefty cost. Yet, starting at only $9 a month, ActiveCampaign is reasonably priced and more affordable than many of the tools on this list.
And ActiveCampaign recently published their Customer Success Commitment, outlining 22 guarantees from their support team, including free implementation and migration.
ActiveCampaign features overview:
- Built-In CRM
- 870+ Integrations
- Split Actions & A/B Testing
- Goal Tracking & Attribution
- List Segmentation
- Win Probability
- Dynamic Content
- SMS & Site Messaging
- Drag-and-Drop Editor
Try ActiveCampaign today with a 14-day free trial – no credit card required.
HubSpot is a well-known and respected tool that provides a dedicated CRM, email marketing software, landing page creation, online chat and forms management, and everything in between.
HubSpot offers email campaign A/B testing as a part of their all-in-one marketing platform and sales management system
By using HubSpot as the backbone of your marketing and sales, you can more easily attribute revenue to the marketing campaign, newsletter, or blog post that influenced each sale. In this sense, HubSpot is more of a CRM that also offers email marketing and automation.
“Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.”– John Wanamaker
HubSpot has a WordPress plugin that gives you the ability to send email campaigns directly from WordPress. The plugin also lets you use a HubSpot form or chat widget to automatically capture contacts in your CRM, all without leaving WordPress.
Get started with HubSpot for free – no credit card required.
Is HubSpot worth the money?
While loved by many, HubSpot was the second most likely response (behind Mailchimp) to the “Which email marketing software are you leaving?” question in our survey of 1,700+ email marketers. The reason is almost always the same – the high price.
HubSpot positions itself as an affordable option for small businesses by providing free versions of their products. But don’t be fooled by the low entry barrier. As your requirement for more advanced features grows or your email list gets bigger, the platform becomes exponentially more expensive.
One business owner I spoke with started on a $50/month plan, and within a year needed a $2,000/month plan that had to be paid annually. The only difference was an extra 15,000 contacts and adding marketing automation, yet they jumped from seeing $50 leave the bank to $24,000.
I do tend to feel conflicted about HubSpot. On one hand, you can get the same functionality for one-tenth of the price using ActiveCampaign, Benchmark, or similar tools. But on the other hand, if knowing what influenced each sale is a problem worth paying a five-figure sum to solve, HubSpot is a strong contender.
This is why we suggest HubSpot as an ideal choice for B2B service companies, where the value of winning a handful of extra clients a year would easily cover the cost. This extends to larger, more sophisticated agencies that must provide clients with in-depth reports on their marketing funnel.
If you’re only looking for email marketing software, using HubSpot is probably overkill. But if you have a wider plan to improve performance across your entire marketing funnel, HubSpot is a solid option – just don’t expect it to come cheap.
Sendinblue offers multiple nurturing tools to help you easily turn leads into customers, such as their intuitive sign up form options, landing page builder, and an intuitive and responsive email editor.
On top of being a clever all-in-one digital marketing solution, Sendinblue also offers advanced reporting and plenty of customisable templates, making it one of the best-performing email platform choices available today.
You can quickly create an email marketing strategy with Sendinblue, as well as handle SMS and site chat messages, integrate Facebook ad management, and easily keep track of it all with a built-in CRM.
Sendinblue allows you to easily build email marketing automations for all of your campaigns
Thanks to all of your digital marketing efforts being in one place, Sendinblue is an excellent way to attract and retarget all of your leads. As an added bonus, you’ll enjoy unlimited contacts and only pay for the emails that you send, instead of shelling out more money as your list grows.
And if you’re interested in customised HTML emails, Sendinblue’s pre-built developer recipes will help you to easily send transactional or bulk emails, as well as several other handy options for developers.
What features does Sendinblue offer?
- Marketing Automation
- Contact Segmentation
- Built-In CRM
- Email & SMS Marketing
- Shared Inbox
- Live Chat
- Transactional Emails
- Landing Pages & Subscription Forms
- Facebook Ads Management
Get started with Sendinblue’s free plan, and send up to 300 emails per day.
If visual appeal is important in your marketing, Campaign Monitor is an email platform you should definitely check out. Especially if you’re looking for a custom email strategy to ensure brand consistency.
You’ll have full control over how every message looks, thanks to Campaign Monitor’s gorgeous templates and a drag-and-drop email builder. Quickly create a great-looking email by customising fonts and colour schemes, and add no-cost stock photos with built-in access to Unsplash.
Create visually appealing and effecitve campaigns with Campaign Monitor’s Customer Journey email builder
With a 99% customer satisfaction rating, Campaign Monitor offers users a dedicated team of service consultants to provide you with ongoing support for account setup, best email marketing practices, and strategies to increase your deliverability rates.
You’ll also get superior contact segmentation, which allows for laser-focused targeting and uber-personalised emails that stand out from the crowd. And with the included link review tool, you’ll never have to worry about outdated or broken links in your messages again – your emails will be automatically reviewed for URL issues.
What are Campaign Monitor’s key features?
- Email Template Builder
- Transactional Emails
- Analytics & Insights
- 100s of Integrations
- Link Review Tool
- Segmentation & Personalisation
- Signup Forms & SMS Marketing
Campaign Monitor is free to try, and paid plans start at just $9/month.
Designed to help e-commerce brands personalise their marketing, Omnisend is quickly becoming one of the leading platforms for online stores. They offer a full marketing automation toolset across email, SMS, push notifications, and integration with Google Ads, Facebook Lead Ads, and 70+ apps to leverage growth opportunities and drive sales on autopilot.
By focusing purely on e-commerce, Omnisend has built innovative email templates designed to drive repeat buyers. From “Wheel of Fortune” offers to birthday discounts and cart reminders, it’s evident that Omnisend’s built by a team intimately aware of what works in e-commerce.
Quickly create laser-targeted email campaigns with Omnisend’s e-commerce marketing automation feature
Omnisend hooks into most ecommerce platforms, including Magento, Shopify, and BigCommerce. But the benefits don’t stop there. Omnisend goes one step further in helping its customers by integrating with review, loyalty and help desk platforms, such as Yotpo, Smile.io, and ReCharge.
This not only enables Omnisend to report on how your email subscribers and customer segments impact sales, but it also allows you to trigger campaigns based on website visitor behaviour, so you can reduce cart abandonment, increase return buyers, and drive more product reviews.
Omnisend paid plans start at just $16/month, are based upon the size of your contact list, and each comes with the ability to send unlimited emails.
What are Omnisend’s most powerful features?
- Surveys & Polls
- Popups & Forms
- A/B Testing
- Email, SMS & Push Notifications
- Transactional & Marketing Emails
- Dynamic Discount Codes
- E-commerce Segmentation
- Reporting & Retargeting
Sign up today and take advantage of the Omnisend Free Forever plan.
If you can make peace with ClickFunnels’ infomercial-laden brand, you’ll find an impressive platform for building out sales and marketing funnels.
While email marketing is a core part of their platform, the premise of ClickFunnels is that you can use it to nurture your audience using courses, membership sites, information products, webinars and more. ClickFunnels centralise all of this under one roof so that you don’t need to buy and connect four or five different products.
If converting your leads requires a lot of education or many touch points through courses and information products, ClickFunnels is a unique option worth considering.
- All-in-one platform – You can build courses, landing pages, websites, membership sites and manage products directly inside ClickFunnels.
- Unique triggers and actions – As a bi-product of it’s all-in-one platform, ClickFunnels has unique triggers and actions in their automation workflows, like auto-enrolling people into courses or upselling products.
- Split-testing – You can split-test almost anything and everything in ClickFunnels, from the usual (landing pages, emails) to more niche tests like course modules and funnel paths.
- Community – ClickFunnels have an active user community (online and offline) with more than 100k customers in their Facebook Group and a number of in-person events throughout the year. There is also a wide network of ClickFunnels consultants available for managed campaigns.
- It’s expensive – ClickFunnels starts at $127 per month for 10k contacts.
- The platform can be buggy – During our most recent test of ClickFunnels we encountered quite a few bugs. No showstoppers, but more than we’d like to have come against.
- The brand is polarising – ClickFunnels users tend to galvanise over the results they generate using the platform. At times this can feel like a crowd of people boasting about how much money they’re making. While this comes down to personal taste, it didn’t sit quite right with us.
ClickFunnels offer three pricing plans, starting from $127/month (paid annually) for 10k contacts up to $208/month which includes 200k contacts.
You can try ClickFunnels for free here (though a credit card is required).
While Benchmark isn’t as well-known as the other tools on our list, it’s definitely an intriguing option, especially if you’re looking to send polished and professional emails without having to be (or hire) an email designer.
Everything from their custom templates to the platform itself is beautifully designed and created to ensure an excellent user experience. While that may seem trivial to some, it makes all the difference when it comes to understanding your data and making the right impression on contacts.
Send effective and polished campaigns with Benchmark’s drag-and-drop email designer
With plans starting at only $10.50 per month, Benchmark is an affordable choice for any small business that needs a beautiful and easy-to-use email tool and marketing automation software.
But it’s likely to be a particularly great choice for small agencies and consultancies, where design is important from both a staff training and optimal client experience perspective.
What are Benchmark’s key features?
- Visual Email Builder
- Marketing Automation
- 1,500+ Integrations
- Landing Pages
- Surveys & Polls
- Sign-Up Forms
- A/B Testing
Enjoy Benchmark for free and send 250 emails to 500 contacts each month.
If you’re new to the world of email marketing and don’t want to feel overwhelmed, Constant Contact is a great place to get started. The super-simple email builder is drag-and-drop, allowing you to quickly and easily add text and images to your messages.
Constant Contact also provides users with 100+ mobile-optimised email templates which make creating professional emails quicker and easier than many other tools out there.
Constant Contact is one of the best beginner options for email marketing
A lot of the email marketing work is done for you with Constant Contact’s automation features, including triggers for welcome messages for new subscribers and related drip email marketing campaigns, all based on customer behaviour on your website.
You’ll also be able to make good use of the contact segmentation feature in Constant Contact with a user-friendly contact import function – simply connect your email or CRM account. And you’ll get access to custom demographic data, subscriber surveys, and personalised coupon codes.
What are Constant Contact’s most powerful features?
- 100s of Templates
- List-Building Tools
- Event Marketing
- Campaign Reporting
- App Integrations
- Landing Pages
- A/B Testing
Get a free trial of Constant Contact for 60 days – no credit card required!
On a tight budget? Look no further than MailerLite! You’ll be able to send up to 12,000 emails per month on their free plan, and it’s only $9 a month for unlimited email sends to 1,000 contacts.
Unlike the other beginner email marketing tools out there, MailerLite is a universally good tool for any industry. Whether you’re growing a small charity, a side-hustle, or you’re a freelancer just starting out, MailerLite offers everything you need to send bulk email marketing campaigns.
MailerLite is a powerful and affordable option for email marketing essentials
If you’re running a small business and need more marketing features like a built-in CRM and advanced audience segmentation, a tool like ActiveCampaign may be a better fit, and it’s roughly the same cost per month.
But for beginners, personal projects, or if you just need to send simple email campaigns to your audience, MailerLite is truly an ideal (and affordable) choice.
What are MailerLite’s free features?
You really can’t go wrong with the MailerLite free plan, but you’ll get even more with their paid plans, including selling digital products, using unlimited templates, and creating auto resend campaigns.
Start your 30-day trial of MailerLite for free and see all they have to offer.
There’s long been a notion in email marketing that the most affordable way to send emails is using Amazon’s Simple Email Service (SES). Yet, the UI just isn’t built for marketing teams to create campaigns.
Many email marketing services have tried to bridge this gap, from Sendy to Moonmail, but they’ve often ended up either falling short on features or being much more developer-centric. EmailOctopus has managed to create an email marketing software that nails this balance.
EmailOctopus is a user-friendly alternative to Amazon SES
The benefits of Amazon SES, without the drawbacks
Amazon’s SES is unbeatable from a cost perspective, and the deliverability is excellent, but it can create a sizeable bottleneck if used to send your email marketing campaigns.
Every campaign, typo fix, or email sequence must be briefed as a development task, diverting design and development resources to something that, frankly, is a flagrant waste of developer time.
EmailOctopus closes this gap. Built on the back of Amazon SES, EmailOctopus gives you the infrastructure benefits of AWS, while enabling you to build your email campaigns in a friendly UI.
The main downside of EmailOctopus is its simplicity. If you’re just sending email campaigns to a list that’s fine, but don’t expect the multi-touch attribution or visual automation builder that you’d find in a tool like ActiveCampaign.
EmailOctopus would be perfect for a small tech startup, where someone on the team is fluent in AWS and needs the flexibility and power of SES without the creation of the emails themselves needing to be coded.
What are the best EmailOctopus features?
- Contact Importing
- Customisable Forms
- Pre-Designed Templates
- Automated Drip Campaigns
- Subscriber Segmentation
Give EmailOctopus a try for free and send up to 10,000 emails per month.
What to look for in email marketing software?
It’s no secret that email marketing software should grow your business by converting leads into customers. But it also needs to save you time and turn those buyers into loyal fans – on autopilot.
We’ve covered the pros and cons of the top 10 email marketing tools. Now it’s time to talk about exactly what makes them so popular, and how they fare in a head-to-head comparison.
During our survey of 1,700+ marketers who were in the process of changing their email marketing software, we discovered 9 factors that separate the good tools from the great:
- 💰 Compare Cost
- 😌 Compare UX
- 📮 Compare Deliverability
- ✨ Compare Features
- 🤝 Compare CRMs
- 📊 Compare Reporting
- 🔌 Compare Integrations
- 🙋 Compare Support & Training
- 🔒Compare Security
Of course, every email marketing tool will claim to do well in all these areas, but by analysing data and observing why marketers leave different email platforms, we were able to capture a far more honest picture.
1. Best for Affordability
What differentiates a $100/month tool from a $20/month tool? Sometimes a lot, sometimes not.
HubSpot, for example, charges quite a bit more than other email providers. But they also offer an all-in-one marketing and sales platform that includes everything a business needs to succeed.
On the other hand, ActiveCampaign is able to provide tons of features, while remaining one of the most affordable email marketing tools on the market.
Comparing email marketing software based on cost alone is a dangerous game. That’s why it’s important to look at all nine factors in this article to ensure that you’re buying the right tool for the job, rather than merely the cheapest.
“There is hardly anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper, and the people who consider price only are this man’s lawful prey.”– John Ruskin
Here’s a detailed comparison of the monthly cost of all 10 of the top email marketing tools on our list, ordered from most affordable to least:
|Tool||Monthly price for 2,500 contacts||Monthly price for 10,000 contacts||Monthly price for 100,000 contacts|
|Campaign Monitor||$29||$89||Not Public|
|Constant Contact||$55||$105||Not Public|
I would be remiss not to point out that cost and value are not the same things. HubSpot, ActiveCampaign, and to some extent, Omnisend all offer all-in-one marketing platforms, while the rest are primarily just for managing and automating email marketing.
Don’t let the tail wag the dog
Your email marketing tool is something you ideally don’t want to change often, so it pays to choose a tool that offers what you’ll need today and for the next few years. Above all, choose the tool that gives you the best opportunity to grow your business.
In the next section, we’ll outline the top 3 email marketing software providers for each of the nine factors, so you can compare three solid choices, based on the most important factors for you.
2. Best for Ease of Use
With some email marketing platforms, it’s taken me up to three hours to make a template look acceptable, especially when it comes to being displayed on a mobile device.
While all the email marketing providers on this list offer visual email builders, some are easier to use than others.
These three tools provide an ideal balance of being simple and powerful:
Rather than explain how easy to use these tools are, I’m going to let screenshots of their email editors do the talking for me.
ActiveCampaign provides one of the best drag-and-drop email builders available
Benchmark allows you to quickly and easily design marketing emails that work
MailerLite gives you the ability to create powerful email campaigns in the blink of an eye
3. Best for Deliverability
An email marketing tool is worthless if your messages end up in the spam folder. That’s why, as dull as it may be, deliverability is a crucial factor.
To get the best deliverability rates, all email marketing services need to:
- Monitor blacklists
- Flag subscribers for review
- Remove problematic subscribers
- Manage the reputation of IP addresses
All the email marketing tools in our top ten list handle all of these for you, which means that no matter which one you choose, you can expect deliverability rates in the 98-99.9% range.
ActiveCampaign’s impressive deliverability is the result of 17 years of optimisation. They offer a very handy “spam check” tool for predicting how likely an email is to land in the inbox. And if a score is too low, you’ll be provided with suggestions for changes to make.
Give your deliverability rates a boost with the spam check tool from ActiveCampaign
EmailOctopus is based on Amazon’s Simple Email Service (SES) infrastructure, which boasts very high deliverability rates, and EmailOctopus is able to pass that benefit on to its customers.
If you want to take deliverability into your own hands, you may wish to buy a dedicated IP for sending emails. This is a feature offered by both ActiveCampaign and EmailOctopus.
4. Best for Email Marketing Features
If you try any of the email marketing tools in this article, you’ll find that they all offer the standard features you’d expect from an email marketing tool, such as visual email campaign builders, pre-designed email templates, autoresponders, and audience segmentation.
Only a handful go above and beyond with additional email marketing features that are designed to save you time and get better results. Below are our top 3 choices for email marketing tools that provide greater-than-average features.
Automation A/B Testing – While most email marketing tools allow you to split-test subject lines, send times, and content, ActiveCampaign is one of the few services that allow you to split test automation sequences.
Find the best ways to convert more subscribers with ActiveCampaign’s automated A/B testing
This means you can A/B test radical changes like sending ten emails to new leads versus only four, which allows you to see which sequence has the highest conversion rate.
Conditional Content – ActiveCampaign is one of the only email marketing services that allow you to include conditional content blocks (“If X is true, show Y”) inside email campaigns.
We use this for localising our pricing (i.e. show $ in the United States, £ in the UK, and € in Europe), and for displaying recommended articles to customers based on their plan or engagement level.
Global Variables – We have over 200 automated emails set up in our ActiveCampaign account. What happens if, for example, I want to change something in my email signature? Or update the pricing of one of our plans?
With other email marketing tools, you’d have to go into each email and manually make the changes. By using global variables, you’ll save time and avoid the irritation of repetitive updates.
Instead of inserting the actual price in an email campaign, you can enter a variable (%price%), and it will replace all variables with the actual price when the email is sent out.
Downloadable Automation Recipes – ActiveCampaign is one of the only email marketing tools to offer a range of automation recipes. Instead of spending days building an elaborate sequence of upsell emails, you can use a pre-built one, and simply adjust the content to fit your brand.
Smart Content – Similar to the conditional content feature offered by ActiveCampaign, HubSpot’s Smart Content allows you to hide and display blocks of content in your email campaigns, based upon where a contact is in your buying cycle or which lists they’re on.
Customize each subscriber’s experience with smart email marketing content in HubSpot
Subject Line Emojis – Using emojis in subject lines has been found to increase open rates by as much as 45%. While you can technically put emojis in the subject line using almost any email marketing tool, HubSpot makes it a bit easier by having an emoji button next to the subject line box.
Add a touch of personality to your email campaigns with HubSpot’s subject line emoji tool
Progressive Profiling – Let’s say a lead visits your website and exchanges their name and email address to download a whitepaper. The next day, they come back to your website to learn more.
Instead of showing the same signup form, HubSpot allows you to identify this lead and show a different offer, or ask a different set of questions to learn more about them over time.
Use progressive profiling in HubSpot to create custom signup forms based on subscriber behaviour
This is called progressive profiling, and it allows you to send more personalised marketing email campaigns as you gather more information on your leads.
Campaign Booster – Omnisend has a campaign booster feature that automatically resends emails to subscribers who haven’t opened a message, which Omnisend states results in a boost in email sales by 30% or more.
Find new ways to increase sales with the Omnisend campaign booster feature
Product Picker – In addition to being able to drag and drop products directly into email messages (a huge time saver), Omnisend also has a handful of click-through rate boosting tools, such as scratch cards and gift boxes.
Dynamic Discount Codes – One final feature that’s a nice touch for e-commerce users is Omnisend’s discount code generator, which connects to your online store and automatically generates unique coupon codes to incentivise customers into buying from you again.
Automatically upsell customers with Omnisend’s custom coupon code generator
5. Best for CRM and Marketing Automation
Unless you’re a large enterprise, it’s probably a wise idea to use a drip email marketing software that also includes a built-in Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool and marketing automation capabilities.
The reason for this is that email marketing works best when emails are triggered to the right people at the right time – automatically. And the data that allows this is often stored in a CRM system.
HubSpot is the undisputed leader in this category. As an all-in-one sales and marketing platform, they offer a full CRM system, as well as built-in tools for blogging, social media management, landing page creation, and… well, you name it, and they probably provide it.
Keep track of each customer’s journey with HubSpot’s customisable CRM
While the HubSpot CRM is extremely powerful, it’s also straightforward and simple to use. You can view deals in a pipeline format (as shown above) or as one long list in a table.
Because HubSpot contains so much data on each of your leads, you can use their marketing automation platform to build email drip campaigns that are based on subscriber behaviour.
Granted, it’s not as flexible as the automation builder found in ActiveCampaign. It’s difficult to create different steps for different users without getting tangled up in individual sequences. But if your automation requirements aren’t too complicated, HubSpot is a solid choice.
HubSpot helps you to build step-by-step email marketing automations
As you can see below, ActiveCampaign’s CRM is very similar to HubSpot’s in design and functionality. It tracks the activity of leads on your website (or app) and can automatically move leads into different stages of your pipeline based on individual site visitor behaviour.
Monitor every part of a lead’s behaviour with the data reports in ActiveCampaign’s CRM
You can also deep-dive into any customer’s profile to see a full history of every interaction that person has had with your company since they first gave you their email address.
Where ActiveCampaign shines is with its marketing automation builder. We’ve already touched on this in previous sections of this article, so I won’t go into much more detail here, but it’s absolutely one of the core features that place ActiveCampaign at the top of our list.
Build email marketing automations for all of your campaigns with ActiveCampaign’s powerful CRM
The ClickFunnels CRM is functionally similar to those above, but with the main difference being that each contact’s history includes all of their interaction history with the courses, products, and offers you build within ClickFunnels.
You can also track your phone calls, conversations and organise appointments within ClickFunnels. Besides that, it’s a relatively light CRM that should meet the needs of a small team or one-person business.
6. Best for Reporting and Analytics
When it comes to advanced reporting functionality, we’re sad to say that most email marketing tools don’t have much to offer – up to the point of making it difficult to even understand which emails are giving you the highest ROI.
What if you want to actually know where your email marketing money is going? We’re here to help by sharing our top picks for the best tools for email analytics and reporting, so you can get the most value for your email marketing platform investment.
As an all-in-one marketing platform, it should come as no surprise that HubSpot offers a huge variety of reports, allowing you to answer every marketing question imaginable for your business.
And to give credit where it’s due, these aren’t vanity metrics – HubSpot does a very good job at digging deep into the data and actually providing actionable insights into sales performance.
Take a deep-dive into your analytics with HubSpot’s user-friendly sales and marketing reports
Of course, this kind of reporting comes at a cost (as we’ve already covered, HubSpot isn’t cheap), but you do get a lot more information than just how many people opened your emails or unsubscribed from your campaigns.
HubSpot reports are easy to digest and surprisingly insightful. You’ll not only get access to details on campaign click-through rates, but you’ll also have access to reply rates and be able to see how much time people spend reading an email.
HubSpot gives you access to data on reply rates and subscriber email reading times
In some ways, I’m reluctant to feature ActiveCampaign in this section, as their reporting is definitely not their strongest point. But to give credit where it’s due it’s come a long way since they’ve introduced goal tracking and attribution.
Get in-depth information on all of your campaign goals with ActiveCampaign’s powerful reporting
ActiveCampaign’s reporting can answer almost any question you throw at it, but you need to be quite mindful of knowing what that question is, and might spend some time picking out the results.
Where HubSpot serves up high-quality answers on a platter, ActiveCampaign’s approach is more akin to spreading that data across 20 or so pages. This can make it difficult to decipher between value metrics or those of the vanity variety.
7. Best for Integrations
These days, most email marketing services integrate with Zapier – a third-party tool that allows you to send data to 1,000+ apps and tools, which allows you to automate your workflow. There are some exceptions, such as HubSpot, which has an enormous variety of community-built native integrations.
ActiveCampaign integrates with Zapier and 100s of other third-party applications
Our choices for the best email marketing tools for integrating with third-party tools are:
With Zapier, every integration (also known as a “zap”) has two parts: a trigger and an action. For example, every time someone subscribes to your mailing list (trigger), they’re automatically added to a Google Spreadsheet (action).
Broadly speaking, the more triggers and actions an email marketing service provides, the easier it is to automate tasks. Below is a list of the top ten email marketing tools and their available Zapier triggers, actions, and searches.
|Type||Zapier Triggers||Zapier Actions & Searches|
8. Best for Customer Support and Training
ActiveCampaign is the only email marketing tool to offer a Customer Success Commitment, which outlines a set of standards around education, support, and trust that you can expect when working with ActiveCampaign.
From implementation and migration support, to access to ActiveCampaign’s online user community, in-person events, and pre-built automation recipes, you can be confident that your email list and marketing efforts are in safe hands.
Take your email marketing skills to the next level with ActiveCampaign University guides and videos
It’s also worth pointing out that ActiveCampaign University offers an extensive range of videos, guides, and documentation. But we’ve also had numerous team members be able to build automation sequences with no training, thanks to how easy the platform is to use.
As a customer, I’ve only had to contact ActiveCampaign’s support a handful of times over the last four years, and each time, I’ve had a response containing a solution within just a couple of hours.
HubSpot has arguably built its entire business around inbound marketing education. They have practised what they preach by blogging, running events, and becoming a thought leader in digital marketing. Leads came to them, rather than them having to rely on traditional outbound marketing.
As such, you can expect in-depth and effective training when you sign up for HubSpot. From courses and certifications to ebooks and their annual INBOUND Conference, HubSpot provides its customers with plenty of opportunities to level up their online marketing skills.
HubSpot is the leader of free courses on a ton of inbound marketing tips, tricks, and best practices
One cautionary note is that HubSpot does charge additional fees for onboarding services. While this isn’t overly unreasonable (as you’re effectively paying for several hours of an expert’s time), it highlights just how generous ActiveCampaign is by offering the same service, free of charge.
HubSpot also has an excellent reputation when it comes to customer care. You’ll have access to phone, email, and live chat support. If any issues do arise with your account, you can feel confident that they’ll be quickly and easily resolved.
I’ve already mentioned that Campaign Monitor has a 99% customer success rate, which is part of the reason they’ve earned a mention in this section. But Campaign Monitor’s customer support and training benefits don’t stop there.
You’ll also appreciate the added peace of mind that comes with full transparency regarding information about the platform’s system status, compliance policies, and data privacy efforts in the Campaign Monitor Trust Center.
Campaign Monitor offers plenty of training to keep you up-to-date on email marketing techniques
As for training to help your business grow, you’ll find an Email Academy inside Campaign Monitor, which gives you access to the latest email marketing tips and tricks. There are courses on email design, data management, personalisation, and automation tactics taught by industry experts.
Campaign Monitor also provides a Marketing Resources Hub with guides, infographics, webinars, videos, and a list of the best tools to help make sure that your email marketing is on point.
9. Best for Security and Compliance
If you capture sensitive personal data or operate in an industry that requires particular security and privacy compliance certifications, we’d suggest the following email marketing platform options.
As you’d expect, these larger and older email marketing providers tend to be the best option when it comes to security and compliance. All three of the services above provide extensive documentation on their websites about their security and compliance measures.
For a more detailed comparison of which security features or compliance certifications these three email marketing tools offer, take a look at the table we’ve created below.
|ISO 27018 (Cloud Privacy)||Yes||No||No|
|ISO 27001 (Information Security)||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|ISO 27017 (Cloud Security)||Yes||No||No|
|EU-US Privacy Shield||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|HIPAA Compliant||Yes (Enterprise Plan)||No||No|
Here are some useful links to learn more:
Get the complete dataset
In addition to collecting 1,782 reviews of email marketing tools over 12 months, our team has also gathered 5,000 data points across 100 email marketing companies, which you can access for free.
If you’d like a copy of our raw dataset to make your own comparisons, you can get it by completing this survey – no email address required.
I hope this guide has been useful in helping you choose your next email marketing tool. If you have any feedback or unanswered questions, feel free to leave a comment below or tag me in a share on Twitter or LinkedIn.