Mailchimp is probably the most commonly mentioned email marketing tool but just because it’s mentioned a lot doesn’t mean that it’s the only one out there. In this post I’m going to share some alternatives to Mailchimp so you can make your own choice.

What is email marketing?

Before I get started, I should define email marketing. I’m talking about sending bulk emails to lots of folks in one go, such as newsletters and special offer emails. You don’t want to be doing this from your Outlook or Gmail accounts as you will find it hard to stay legal and your email provider won’t like it. Fortunately there are lots of email marketing tools out there to help us stay legal and make it easy to send bulk emails. (Just as an aside, you MUST make sure that you have explicit permission to email people on your list. This will become even more imporatant when then new GDPR rules come into place next year).

Why Mailchimp?

Mailchimp logoMailchimp has always offered a generous free plan which works brilliantly for lots of small business owners. They recently introduced automation into the free plan too so you can magically send a series of emails to new subscribers to your list. Thanks Mailchimp!

 

Mailchimp is very strict about adhering to their policies and terms of use. While this is not a bad thing, it does mean that they sometimes close accounts without giving specific reasons. On the free plan they can close your account without discussion, in some cases without releasing your carefully collected list, meaning you have to start your list building from scratch. If you are unlucky enough to have your account closed you will be unlikely to win back favour and will need to start looking elsewhere.  In this instance you will have no choice but to use an alternative provider.

Other people just don’t like Mailchimp. I like the cheeky monkey and the funny little comments that you get as you go through the various tasks but it drives some people crazy. And that’s ok. Or they don’t like the interface or find things confusing. If that’s you then there are a few alternatives to Mailchimp for you to consider.

So what are the alternatives to Mailchimp?

Surprisingly there are quite a few alternatives that offer a free plan which also includes automation. This means that if you don’t like Mailchimp (or it doesn’t like you!) then should be able to get going with an alternative without too much trouble. I’ve picked 2 that get consistently good reviews and I have set up accounts with both and can report that they are easy to use with good documentation to get you going.

Send In Blue

Alternatives to Mailchimp Send in BlueThe first one I suggest you look at is Send In Blue. They let send 300 emails per day for free, up to 9000 per month. While you do start paying at a lower number of subscribers, you pay less as your list starts to get into larger numbers.

 A key benefit for some people will be that their servers are in Europe so you are not moving data out of the EU, which can have implications under the Data Protection Act (and going forward GDPR).

MailerLite

Alternatives to mailchimp 2 Mailer liteIf you have a larger list then take a look at MailerLite. Their free plan allows up to 1000 subscribers and you can send unlimited emails. They have a nice looking interface which is easy to use, less cluttered than Mailchimp.

They let you have access to all their fancy functionality on this free plan which is pretty generous. This includes some nice looking landing pages for signups as well as automation.

Pick the one you like best

As with many of these systems there is no right or wrong answer. It’s about finding the thing that works best for you. All of them are free so there is no reason not to give them a try, see how easy it is to set up an account and connect it to a form on your website. Drop their support a line to see how easy it is to get help if you need it. See which one feels nicest to use.

Whichever you pick you can always change to something else later on if you change your mind.

Do you use Mailchimp? Have you heard of any of these alternatives to Mailchimp? Do you use them? I’d love to know what you think of them if you are using them.