AWeber vs MailChimp: Email Marketing Service Battle

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AWeber vs Mailchimp logosHaving trouble nailing down which email marketing service provider to use for your business? Two of the most popular, AWeber and MailChimp, each have their devotees (and detractors). On the first inspection, they seem to offer a lot of the same features, with the exception that MailChimp has a free forever plan. But we dug deeper into these rivals to see how their differences could affect your ultimate choice. First, we’ll give you an overall review of each service and then delve into some of the most important features to see who wins the battle of AWeber vs MailChimp.

Just as a friendly note, neither AWeber nor MailChimp made it into our top 3 this year for Best Email Marketing Service Provider, but MailChimp was our choice for Best Free Plan in our new “Best Of” categories. However, you may still like to know how these two popular services compare against one another.

AWeber Review

AWeber logo

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AWeber is a commonly used email marketing service provider. Their features include the standard ones that we’ve all come to expect as well as some advanced ones, at a good price too. With their competitive pricing, they put up a strong fight in the email marketing battle. They also offer a 30-day money back guarantee, which is not common in this industry.

Key Features

  • Store unlimited images and send unlimited emails
  • API Lab has good tools for creating new apps, and developers get a free account
  • Attach up to 1MB to a newsletter (not many email marketing providers allow this)
  • Great WYSIWYG editor
  • Integrate your account with more than 50 apps including Zapier, Salesforce, WordPress, Facebook, etc.
  • PayPal, Shopify, Magento and Google Checkout are some shopping cart integrations available
  • Reporting and tracking are extensive, showing you the number of emails sent, open rate, click-through, undelivered emails and more
  • Knowledge base is great, and they offer webinars, video tutorials and more

Pros

Cons

  • Unlimited sent emails
  • Host unlimited images
  • Over 700 email templates (more than MailChimp)
  • Easy to use interface
  • Can-spam compliant
  • RSS to email, A/B split testing, inbox preview, trigger messaging available
  • More than 6,000 stock images (much better than MailChimp)
  • Mobile apps for iPhone and Android
  • WYSIWYG & HTML editor
  • Broadcast archive your newsletters by publishing them as an easy to navigate webpage
  • Support options include phone, live chat, and email on weekends (better than Mail Chimp)
  • No integration with Google Analytics (MailChimp does)
  • No social media tracking or reporting (MailChimp does)
  • Importing subscriber list lacking — Can’t directly import from Gmail contacts, LinkedIn, Outlook, QuickBooks, etc.
  • No internal surveys or integration capability (MailChimp has integration)
  • No option for 24/7 customer support
  • No private IP address capability (MailChimp does)

Pricing

Pricing for A Weber is per contact, per month. There are no contracts or cancellation fees. They offer a 30-day free trial so feel free to try it before you buy it.

Number of ContactsAWeber Cost Per Month
0-500$19
501-2,500$29
2,501-5,000$49
5,001-10,000$69
10,001-25,000$149
25,000+Contact AWeber

MailChimp Review

MailChimp logo

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MailChimp is one of the most popular email marketing services around, with more than 8 million users. What’s their key to success? They offer the best free plan compared to all other service providers — 2,000 subscribers and 12,000 emails per month, free forever with a lot of great features. That’s hard to beat. But MailChimp is also a fun, easy-to-use system that’s a solid choice for beginners and seasoned email marketers alike. If you need to bump up your volume, they have paid plans and pay-as-you-go plans priced competitively. Businesses that want more advanced automation and reporting features, however, may need to look elsewhere.

Key Features

  • Inbox Inspector add-on that lets you generate over 25 screenshots of your email in all major email applications, as well as live tests from all the major ISPs to see if spam filters are triggered.
  • Track the origin of your sign-ups to help optimize your opt-out prevention methods.
  • Subscriber profiles feature lets you keep tabs on each customer’s activity.
  • Responsive design templates look good on any device.
  • Integrates with 100+ apps, including Google Analytics, Salesforce, PayPal, WordPress and more.

Pros

Cons

  • Generous free plan
  • Html and WYSIWYG template editing
  • Free unlimited image hosting
  • Unlimited emailing (with paid plan)
  • Clean, polished, easy to use interface
  • Good list and subscriber management
  • Can spam compliant
  • Free newsletter archiving
  • Mobile apps for iPhone and Android
  • Internal survey integration (not with AWeber)
  • RSS to email, A/B split testing, inbox preview, trigger messaging available
  • Private IP address available (added fee)
  • Importing contact lists can be difficult (but AWeber is also)
  • Very limited customer service hours compared to AWeber
  • List segmentation is very limited with free plan
  • Fewer templates than AWeber offers
  • No phone support (AWeber has it)
  • No stock images (A Weber has 6,000+)

Pricing

MailChimp offers the best free plan for the number of subscribers/emails sent and variety of features than any other email marketing service. They also provide monthly pricing and pay as you go fees for those who need more than what you can do with the free plan.

Free Plan

One of the great things about MailChimp is their free forever plan. You get up to 2,000 subscribers and 12,000 emails you can send each month, no credit card required! It’s ideal for low-volume senders, beginners or nonprofits with limited budgets.

Monthly Subscriptions

With MailChimp’s monthly subscriptions you pay per number of contacts, but you get an unlimited number of emails per month.

Number of ContactsPrice Per Month
0-2,000Free
1,001-1,500$20
1,501-2,000$25
2,001-2,500$30
2,501-2,600$35
2,601-2,700$40
2,700+Use their online calculator

Pay As You Go Plan

MailChimp gives you the option of buying packages of email credits, which you use like postage stamps. These can be a great option if you’re on the free plan but occasionally need to send more emails than the 12,000 limit.

Number of CreditsPrice Per Month
300$9
1,000$30
2,000$60
5,000$100
7,500$150
10,000$200
25,000$250
50,000$500
50,000+Use their online calculator

High-Volume Plans

Mail Chimp also provides payment plans for high-volume users and offers more advanced features, including multi-user accounts, SOC II and PCI DSS certifications, two-form authentication, and account activity alerts, full-featured API, and fully advanced segmentation. You have two options:

  • High-volume monthly subscriptions start at $2,600 per month for 600,001 contacts and 7.29 million emails/month
  • High-volume CPM, starting at $2,500 for 2 million email credits — an option for users who send fewer than four times a month and don’t want to pay for email volume capacity

Pro Email Plan

For $199 per month, you can add Pro onto your account and have access to powerful analytics to help your business grow.

Read our full review of MailChimp

MailChimp vs AWeber Comparison

Let’s explore some of the most important features all email marketing service providers offer and see how AWeber and MailChimp compare head to head.

Email Design Tools

Both AWeber and MailChimp offer responsive templates, meaning they’ll automatically look good on any device — a must in email marketing these days. AWeber has 400+ ready-made templates – more than MailChimp — but if you’re looking for more customization and design capability, MailChimp is the better option. MailChimp even provides you with raw code to help you build your own email templates.

MailChimp logoWhich has the edge? MailChimp


Email Deliverability

You want to make sure your emails are getting where they’re supposed to go in the first place. Who’s better at this? AWeber has a long history of having one of the highest deliverability rates in the industry. But MailChimp’s deliverability rate is well in the 90th percentile — an encouraging percentage rate compared to a lot of other email marketing services.

AWeber logoWhich has the edge? AWeber


Autoresponders

If you’re running an email campaign and want to send follow-up emails to certain customers based on their response to your previous emails (i.e. thanking them for signing up on your website, or making a purchase), AWeber and MailChimp come out about even with their autoresponder functionality. Please note that autoresponders are only available with MailChimp’s paid version.

So, where do they differ? MailChimp makes it easier to target a subset of your email list with its autoresponder interface — choosing subsets with AWeber is possible; it’s just much more cumbersome. On the other hand, with AWeber, it’s much easier to manage and track your follow-up emails to see who has opened them and when. MailChimp falls short on its autoresponder tracking capability.

Which has the edge? Even


Email Tracking & Analytics

The best email marketing services offer tracking and analytics. Both AWeber and MailChimp provide extensive email tracking and analytical tools to help you gauge who’s opening and clicking through your emails. You can monitor subscriber activity, bounces, unsubscribes, click-throughs and generate revenue reports. Where MailChimp comes out ahead? MailChimp provides Google Analytics integration; AWeber does not. And if you’re running social media campaigns along with your emails, MailChimp tracks your social sharing efforts; again, AWeber does not.

MailChimp logoWhich has the edge? MailChimp


Customer Support

AWeber has the clear edge on customer support, although both services have good online tutorials, FAQs and other resources. Neither service offers 24/7 customer support hours. AWeber provides phone, live chat and email support seven days a week. MailChimp has more limited hours for phone, email and live chat support.

AWeber logoWhich has the edge? AWeber

How Does an Email Marketing Service Build Relationships?

Email marketing is an excellent way to build and maintain relationships with your customers. Check out the following video — a success story of how one business owner uses AWeber to engage his customers.

AWeber vs MailChimp, The Final Verdict

Based on our in-depth reviews, AWeber and MailChimp fall about even overall. It depends on the features you’re looking for with your email marketing strategy. Yes, MailChimp has an edge with its free plan, but it’s limited and will only get you so far (i.e. no autoresponders with free plan). If reliable customer support is important, then AWeber is the way to go. Check out our Email Marketing Comparison Article for an in-depth analysis of all the top players in this category and to see why these two companies are not in our top three picks for best email marketing service.

Calling all MailChimp and AWeber users: which is your favorite?

Sally has coupled her passion for writing with her (slight) obsession for the latest high tech gadgets. While she’s not daydreaming about the beach, she’s taking advantage of all the activities her hometown has to offer in the Blue Ridge foothills.

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3 Comments on "AWeber vs MailChimp: Email Marketing Service Battle"

avatar
Gaurav khurana
Gaurav khurana
MailChimp is good I think because of the price factor for most of the people. As without much earning there will be very few people who would like to invest in Aweber.
Randy Clark
Randy Clark
I still prefer GetResponse 🙂
Manish Punjabi
Manish Punjabi
I am all for Mailchimp. I used it successfully for some 8 months before migrating to Eloqua. Now I am recommending it to our partners across Middle-East and Africa. The for-ever free plan is a BIG plus!
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