Active Campaign Top Email Marketing and Autoresponder

Email marketing is a core part of any successful business. It has been ever since the birth of the internet and will continue to be.

It goes without saying then, that choosing the best autoresponder for your business is very important.

While there are loads to choose from, it can get a bit confusing. Some have cool, innovative, and fancy features, while others just offer the tried and tested basics.

On top of that, some autoresponders are better suited to certain types of businesses. If you sign up for the wrong one then it can be a pain to change later down the road.

In this article you will learn about the different features and benefits of the top autoresponders on the market along with the pricing so you can decide which one is right for you.

Several of these autoresponders also have a free plan so if you’re on a budget be sure to read about each one before making our decision.

What To Look For When Choosing The Best Autoresponder

When you’re choosing an autoresponder, there are a few important things to look for to make sure you choose the best one for your business.

Automation

Email automation is the facility to be able to set an email or a series of emails to be delivered automatically based on a trigger or a set of triggers. This is extremely useful for all types of businesses and can save you a lot of time.

Most commonly, people use email automation to set an email or even a whole campaign to trigger an opt into your list.

However, you can also automate your blog posts to be sent to your subscribers’ inbox, set automation by date when building up to a promo or an event, and even send your subscribers a personalized birthday message.

Deliverability

Email deliverability is the success rate an autoresponder has in being able to deliver your email to the inbox of your subscriber.

Unfortunately, not all autoresponders have a great deliverability rate. While some can consistently deliver your emails directly into the inbox of your subscribers, others have a lower success rate.

If you’re using an autoresponder company that doesn’t have good deliverability, then your emails will often end up in the Promotions box for your Gmail subscribers or trigger spam filters and end up in the spam folder.

It goes without saying, this can really hurt your email marketing campaigns.

Segmentation

Email segmentation is basically a way to separate your subscribers onto different lists so you can send them more relevant info based on what they’re interested in.

For example, if you run a fitness blog that covers a range of topics, then some of those topics will appeal to some of your site visitors and not others. However, you may also have a lead magnet that appeals to people across more than one of the different interest groups.

So, rather than sending everyone on your list the same emails, you can segment your subscribers onto different lists based on things like interests, location, purchase history, age, and so forth.

Being able to send more laser-targeted emails to your subscribers based on what they’re interested in will get you better open rates, more engagement, and a higher conversion rate.

Ease of use

If you’re a tech nerd and you love to figure things out then you may not be too worried about how easy it is to use your autoresponder.

However, most entrepreneurs want a solution that is straightforward and easy to set up.

Particularly if you’re new to working online or if you’re a solopreneur with not enough hours in the day, you’re gonna want to choose a solution that can get the job done without having to spend hours figuring things out.

My 7 Best Autoresponder Services

Aweber

Aweber has been around since 1998 and was one of the first autoresponder services on the scene.

They have a great track record and are well respected in the world of online marketing.

With Aweber you get a whole host of features including a landing page builder, contact forms, segmentation capabilities, ready to use templates and even the use of stock images.

Aweber is great for all kinds of businesses and is also affiliate marketing friendly.

Pros

  • Aweber is competitively priced
  • Generous 30-day free trial period
  • Aweber allows you to use all the features during your free trial period
  • Easy to use (is newbie friendly)
  • Has great onboarding training videos to show you how to use it
  • Integrates with many other services including ClickFunnels, ThriveLeads, Unbounce, PayPal and more
  • Great customer support, even during your free trial
  • Aweber has a huge template library
  • Aweber has a very easy to use drag-and-drop email template builder
  • Aweber is well established and respected
  • Aweber is regularly introducing new features which are available to all members
  • Aweber has good automation and segmentation tools
  • Aweber has great deliverability rates
  • Aweber is affiliate marketing friendly
  • It is free to migrate your list to them from another service

Cons

  • There is no ongoing free plan for people with a very small email list
  • Aweber charges you for duplicate and unsubscribed people on your list. This means you need to periodically clear out the duplicates and remove people from your list who have unsubscribed so you don’t go over your pricing plan
  • Aweber does not currently have a split-testing feature available

Pricing

Aweber’s pricing is fairly competitive and starts at $19 per month for up to 500 email subscribers.

The next package up is also very affordable at $29 per month for up to 2,500 subscribers. And, of course, like any other autoresponder there are increased pricing tiers for more subscribers.

While Aweber is not the cheapest on the lowest tier plan, it certainly is very reasonable from the second tier up compared to most other autoresponder services.

If you need to use landing pages and funnels in your business then the new addition of the landing page builder can save you a lot of money using a third-party service for this feature.

Aweber has a 30-day free trial so you can try out all the features before you pay over any money.

SendLane

SendLane is a cool autoresponder solution with a number of mention-worthy features.

I have written a full, in-depth SendLane Review article, which you can check out. Alternatively, if you just want the short overview of why this autoresponder is in my top 7, keep reading here.

SendLane has great automation and segmentation capabilities and they also use a tagging system for you to easily segment subscribers onto different lists.

Each account also comes with pre-build automation funnels ready for you to use. They literally plug and play! You also get a selection of email templates to choose from in order to stylize your emails.

Being able to contact your subscribers via text message is a huge advantage these days. With SendLane you can also automate SMS marketing to your customers if you are collecting phone numbers from your subscribers.

SendLane has some pretty great automation features. You can create automations based on user behavior, events, or triggers you set up.

Knowing exactly where your conversions are coming from is very important when working online. With SendLane you can also track your conversions and monitor your ROI.

If your emails aren’t showing up in people’s inboxes then there’s not much point in using them. Fortunately, SendLane also has excellent deliverability rates and are able to deliver a high number of your emails exactly where you want them to be delivered.

SendLane is also affiliate marketing friendly so if you’re trying to build an affiliate business then they’re worth checking out.

Unfortunately, all of these great features come at quite a high price. They’re definitely not one of the cheaper options on this list and there is also no free plan.

Pros

  • Excellent deliverability
  • Affiliate marketing-friendly
  • Advanced automation and segmentation features
  • SMS messaging
  • Automation funnels
  • You can save money on your subscription if you choose to pay yearly

Cons

  • Expensive
  • No free plan
  • The free trial is only 14-days

Pricing

SendLane’s pricing starts with the Growth Plan at $79 per month, however, this plan allows you a generous amount of subscribers, up to 5,000.

If you want the full range of features then you will need to upgrade to the Pro Plan at $125 per month.

SendLane also has a special offer pricing plan, called the Starter Plan. The pricing of this plan fluctuates, but you can check the Starter Plan pricing here.

You can also see how SendLane stacks up to the competition with this comparison tool here.

ConvertKit

ConvertKit is one of the most popular autoresponders around at the moment. It’s stylish, fresh, and has fantastic automation and segmentation capabilities.

While ConvertKit doesn’t have as many features as some of the other autoresponder alternatives out there, the ones it does have work extremely well.

ConvertKit’s target market is bloggers and people in the creative industry. So if this is also your area then I highly recommend taking a closer look at ConvertKit.

One thing I particularly like about ConvertKit is the “auto-resend to un-opens” feature. This is a great feature and can increase your open rate considerably.

Another great advantage of using ConvertKit is the “conditional email content based on tags” feature.

This allows you to only show a certain type of content to your subscribers based on the tags you assign them.

Pros

  • ConvertKit has a free plan for lists under 500 subs
  • Very good segmentation capabilities that also allows you to assign tags to your subs
  •  ConvertKit includes a landing page builder with more than 30 templates to choose from. This is also available on the free plan.
  • ConvertKit makes it very easy for you to sign up and get started
  • No limit on traffic to your landing pages and opt-in forms, even on the free plan
  • ConvertKit has advanced reporting capabilities. This allows you to easily see which campaigns are working the best for you
  • ConvertKit has great visual funnel mapping capabilities. This means you can easily layout, design, and manage your funnels
  • ConvertKit integrates with over 90 other services including ThriveLeads, OptinMonster, ClickFunnels, PayPal and more
  • ConvertKit’s customer support is well rated

Cons

  • The ConvertKit free plan does not allow you to set up automation
  • ConvertKit’s pricing quickly increases as your list grows
  • Email templates are not the easiest to use

Pricing

ConvertKit has a free plan for people who have an email list under 500 subscribers. However, on the free plan there are limited functions available to you. IT is also not possible to set up automation on the ConvertKit free plan.

If you go over the 500 subscriber limit of the ConvertKit free plan or if you just want access to the advanced features then pricing starts at $29 per month and allows you a limit of 1,000 subscribers.

Once you go over the 1,000 subscriber limit the ConvertKit pricing quickly increases. The next plans up will cost you $49 per month for 3,000, then $79 per month for 5,000 subs, and so on.

While ConvertKit definitely isn’t the cheapest, they do have some really great features, which may be worth you paying the extra money for.

ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign is currently one of the most popular email marketing platforms with over 100,000 small businesses using them across the world. It is also considered by many to be the best autoresponder overall in 2020.

They are particularly known for their sophisticated automation and segmentation capabilities as well as their easy to use visual automation builder.

ActiveCampaign also has a range of awesome features that can make a…

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