I love social media, but I know that newsletters are at the heart of how I communicate with my audience. They are a way to stay in touch, send some love, update on new developments and share inspiration. I receive a very select number of newsletters myself and I truly love reading them and following the journey of the sender. When I design new websites for my clients, a super important question is how we`ll hook their email list in and what newsletter platform they will use.
When I started this business (actually, when I started blogging “properly” years ago) my first choice was Mailchimp, mainly because it was easy to handle and free. As my business grew I made a big leap and switched to Ontraport because I felt ready to make that investment to get a massive upgrade in functionality. More recently however I made the transition to ConvertKit because it fits much better into my business and supports my goals for much less cash. Read below what I see as the pros and cons of each option, I hope it makes your choice easier!
Mailchimp – free for up to 2.000 subscribers
- Very popular, therefore its easy to find free tutorials on Youtube
- Integrates easily with many opt in plug ins like Bloom or PopupAlly
- The drag & drop builder is relatively easy to handle, but design options are limited
- Better tracking and e-commerce functionality is available from 10 USD/months
- It´s possible to create separate lists for different audience groups, but other providers offer much better ways to tag and segment people – that way you can see who bought what and when, where contacts came from, how often they open your newsletters, what links they click etc etc. As you grow your business this information is vital!
- The design and automation options are somewhat limited
- Newsletters are more likely to land in the Gmail promotions tab than they are with ConvertKit for example
Ontraport – starts at 79 USD – 297 USD/months
- Offers extensive automation and segmentation functionality
- Great documentations and tutorials
- Really great customer care
- Offers e-commerce and membership solutions so you might need less software and can cover everything from courses to digital downloads with one platform
- It can be a steep learning curve if you are not very techy and you might need to hire help
- The costs are comparably high, so perhaps not the best choice if you are starting out
ConvertKit – starts at 29USD/months
- Great design, very easy to handle
- Excellent customer care
- Extensive tagging and segmentation – you can learn all kinds of fancy things about your audience and track them for future promotions
- Integrates with all kinds of cool things like Gumroad, Teachable, Shopify etc
- Makes things like nurture sequences and follow ups very easy
- You can easily resend to those that didn`t open your email
- Is a bit of an investment
- Pricing increases if you go over 1k
- Does not currently integrate directly with Bloom
…now you know! I did hesitate to migrate *again* after making my big move to Ontraport, but am happy to report that moving to ConvertKit has only taken about three hours including segmentation, set up of my automations and my nurture sequence (obviously it can take longer if your set up is more complex). If you are unsure which option might be best for you, feel free to get in touch for a consultation.
*Some of these links are affiliate links, meaning I get a payout if you use them to sign up.