If you are starting to venture into email marketing, it is crucial to research your choices before making a decision on which platform to aid you. With so many email marketing software to select from, Aweber and Mailchimp are 2 of the leaders in the industry. Comparisons between the two are inevitable, and today, we analyse which platform we feel is better.
These categories we are comparing are as follows:
- User Interface
- Integration with other software
- Marketing Automation
- Landing page builder
How much do using these platforms cost? If the software is over your budget, then there is not much purpose in looking any further. Pricing is not a simple issue. Points to consider include the number of subscribers, number of emails to send monthly, and the features needed to run marketing campaigns. On the bright side, both Aweber and Mailchimp have affordable pricing options for most businesses.
In Aweber, you are charged based on the number of subscribers you have on your mailing list. Its pricing plan starts at $19 per month for hosting and emailing a list of up to 500 subscribers. The amount scales up with more subscribers, all the way till 25,000. The good news is Aweber has a 30-day free trial for users to experience all their features. The primary benefit about Aweber’s pricing plans is that you get access to the same features regardless of the plan you decide on.
In contrast, Mailchimp offers 4 different plans: Free, Essentials, Standard and Premium. The free plan allows you to have up to 2000 subscribers and send 12000 emails monthly. However, most available features are basic and limited. Each plan gives different features, with the more expensive plans obviously offering the most advanced features. Interestingly, Mailchimp limits audience lists based on the plan you select, which is rare in email marketing platforms. Mailchimp also offers a “Pay as You Go” plan where you pay a set fee per email sent, making it useful for users who send emails less often.
Verdict: Both solutions offer very different pricing approaches. Aweber gets our vote in this category because they do not tier any of their features available based on the plan you select. They only price based on your subscriber count, which means it is good value for most business sizes as you get access to all features.
Issues will always arise no matter how hard we try to avoid them. The best way to overcome these issues is to resolve them as soon as possible with minimal disruption to your business.
Aweber provides live chat support on a 24/7 basis to all its customers regardless of the price plan. This means you can receive quick, easy, and immediate support. Aweber also offers email support on a 24/7 basis that is tailored according to your industry. Furthermore, for users who prefer self-help options, Aweber has its Knowledge Base that offers FAQs and resources on how to use the platform. The resources are personalised according to the feature you are using at the time. You have the option to also submit a request in the top navigation bar if you fail to find what you need.
Mailchimp has amazing self-serve options for customer support. Besides having multiple sections that cover their own platform, they also include multiple sections that offer tips for email marketing as a whole and guides to improve your strategy. With regards to their live chat support and email support, only users with paid plans have access to these.
Verdict: While Mailchimp certainly has impressive self-help resources available, we are voting for Aweber in this category due to Aweber’s live/agent options and that all support options are available for all users.
3. User Interface
User Interface refers to the user friendliness, how easy it is to find the features you are looking for and more. It is important to pick an email marketing software that is easy to use, and all users can quickly get to speed on.
Aweber’s dashboard gives you a quick snapshot into your subscriber stats as well as any scheduled broadcasts you may have ready to send to your email list. In fact, Aweber’s dashboard includes significantly more data than most email marketing platforms do. However, the user interface does look outdated, and the process to create an email list is rather complicated. On some occasions, we had to find information on google to even create segments.
Mailchimp provides a clean and minimalistic look and view, in contrast to Aweber. Information about subscribers can also be found on the dashboard. However, the minimalism does on occasion, make it slightly challenging for the users. They do not fully explain how to use their features upfront, instead providing only a short text. To overcome this, they offer a great deal of resources to its users, which can definitely aid in resolving any confusion the users may encounter.
Verdict: Mailchimp is the winner here. The overall design of the user interface looks much neater compared to Aweber. Furthermore, the availability of their how-to guides and tutorials makes it easy for new users to get up and running quickly and navigate the user interface with ease.
4. Integration With Other Software
When it comes to your digital marketing strategy, it is likely that users will end up working with many kinds of software. Integrations help to ensure that information flows seamlessly between different solutions and business departments.
Aweber offers a wide variety of integrations on their websites, although not all of them are actually direct integrations. On the plus side, they have researched which third-party integration tools will help connect the various tools. Aweber’s integrations page also includes links to step-by-step tutorials that guide users on the integration process. Furthermore, Aweber’s API allows users to build their own integration if the software they use is not on the list.
Mailchimp has a rather wide variety of integrations available, although just over half of the direct integrations that Aweber offers. Interestingly, the platform sometimes loses integrations (such as Shopify) while gaining new ones (such as Canva). While Mailchimp has an API to help you to build connections to software, they have expressly stated that they cannot help users to troubleshoot any issues that might arise.
Verdict: Aweber wins this category due to having way more integrations and also plenty more support for users.
5. Marketing Automation
Marketing automation is a critical feature to have in your email marketing software. The email marketing platform you choose should be able to create these automations quickly and easily.
A cool feature that Aweber has is that you can share campaigns across accounts. This makes collaboration among colleagues simple as you can import your respective campaigns to each other’s accounts. Unfortunately, as opposed to Mailchimp, Aweber’s marketing automation feature, “Aweber Campaigns”, is far more basic in nature. You can only start a campaign if a user subscribes to a list, or if a tag is manually or automatically added to a subscriber.
Mailchimp offers one-click automation to free users. Multi-step automation, such as email series and onboarding campaigns, become available to users with their Standard plan. Compared to Aweber, Mailchimp offers significantly more functionality when it comes to marketing automation. You can opt to select from a variety of pre-defined workflows – “e-commerce”, “education”, “non-profit” and more – or create your own workflows depending on your goals.
Verdict: Mailchimp wins the automation category. Mailchimp offers more automation options than Aweber, which gives users more flexibility to create automations based on their preferred tags and segments in their audience.
6. Email Templates
Email templates play a big role in saving time, enabling increased efficiency for businesses by speeding up the sales process. Both Aweber and Mailchimp provide numerous email templates designed to meet different needs.
Aweber offers over a whopping 700 email templates. They are designed to suit different applications and organisation type, ranging from e-commerce, events, sports to education and more. The email templates are responsive, meaning they will automatically resize themselves to suit readers’ devices. Furthermore, users can make tweaks to the templates extensively.
In contrast, Mailchimp offers about 100 templates, significantly less than Aweber. Like Aweber, the email templates are responsive, and you can make amendments extensively to suit your needs. However, to do so, you would have to pay a premium with Mailchimp. In terms of quality, Mailchimp’s templates does appear slightly less outdated versus Aweber’s templates.
Verdict: We are going to have to call this one a tie. While Aweber provides way more templates, the quality of Mailchimp’s templates does seem to edge that of Aweber’s. So, it really depends on whether you prefer quantity or quality.
7. Landing Page Builder
Landing pages are web pages designed with one main goal in mind: data capture. Typically, you will see a form, some attractive images, coupled with a minor amount of text detailing the benefit of submitting your email address.
Landing pages are a new feature in Aweber. You can use Aweber to design simple landing pages which can be used collectively with advertising campaigns. Unfortunately, that is about it. A lack of analytics on the performance of your landing pages, along with no facilitation of A/B testing, means that landing pages are not Aweber’s strong point.
Like Aweber, landing pages are a rather new feature in Mailchimp. Likewise, A/B testing is not facilitated. However, Mailchimp’s landing pages do let users view analytics on the performance of their landing pages. This adds value to proceedings as users can perform manual tests and make decisions on the performance of their landing pages.
Verdict: It is clear that both Aweber and Mailchimp are not dedicated landing page products. However, Mailchimp has the edge here due to offering some statistics for their landing pages, unlike Aweber. Hence, Mailchimp gets the vote from us in this category.