Benchmark vs MailChimp: Battle of the Email Marketing Giants

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Benchmark vs MailChimp logosSearching for the best affordable email marketing service (or even a free one)?! Two widely popular services, Benchmark and MailChimp, go toe to toe in this review to see which one comes out on top.

It’s not an easy call — MailChimp has been the longtime go-to service for free plans and affordable higher plans. But Benchmark has stepped up the competition big time over the last few years in what appears to be a direct challenge to MailChimp’s pricing and features. Read our Benchmark vs MailChimp review to learn about what each has to offer.

Visit Benchmark’s Website | Visit MailChimp’s Website

Benchmark vs MailChimp Comparison Table

 BenchmarkMailChimp
Customer SupportCheckmark
Design ToolsCheckmark
DeliverabilityCheckmarkCheckmark
AutomationCheckmark
Tracking & AnalyticsCheckmark
PricingCheckmark
FeaturesCheckmark
Overall WinnerCheckmark

Customer Support

There’s a clear winner in this category. Benchmark offers live chat, phone and email customer service with all plans, including their free plan. MailChimp only gives you live chat and email support with their paid plans (and neither is available with their free plan).

Benchmark logoWinner: Benchmark

Design Tools

Both services provide a drag-and-drop editor for quick set up, an HTML coding option for experienced users and hundreds of attractive templates to choose from. MailChimp’s editors and general user interface are simply easier to use than Benchmark’s, and you can even set up mobile-friendly landing pages with MailChimp.

MailChimp also provides better customization options for layouts, buttons, social media icons and more. If you work with a ton of images, MailChimp gives you unlimited storage, while Benchmark’s storage is capped at 10MB.

MailChimp logoWinner: MailChimp

Deliverability

MailChimp and Benchmark have excellent reputations for getting emails to inboxes, with rates well into the 90th percentile. Both also have built-in anti-spam software to identify potential problems within your emails and your campaigns that could trigger spam filters.

Winner: Tie

Automation

MailChimp has really stepped up its automation game with the addition of more trigger-based responses, and they even give you autoresponders in their free plan. However, Benchmark’s Automation Pro tool still edges out MailChimp. It’s incredibly easy to set up and use, and offers a wider variety of autoresponders.Benchmark logo

Winner: Benchmark

Tracking & Analytics

Both Benchmark and MailChimp offer fantastic basic reporting features, as well as social media tracking and geotracking. MailChimp, however, goes beyond the expected stats, like opens, bounces, unsubscribes, etc. MailChimp’s advanced analytics give you information on conversions, which links were clicked, revenue reports, subscriber activity reports and much more.

MailChimp logoWinner: MailChimp

Pricing

 BenchmarkMailChimp
Free PlanUp to 2,000 contacts/month
14,000 emails/month
Up to 2,000 contacts/month
12,000 emails/month
Lowest Price Plan/Month$13.99 (600 contacts)$10 (500 contacts)
Up To 2,500 Contacts$31.99$30
Up To 5,000 Contacts$51.99$50
Up To 25,000 Contacts$164.99$150

MailChimp and Benchmark offer the best free email marketing plans on the market. Their free plans are pretty similar, with a generous number of features. Both give you 2,000 contacts per month, but Benchmark has a slight edge, allowing for 14,000 email sends per month compared to 12,000 with MailChimp.

With both services’ free plans you get full access to all their templates, easy drag and drop editors, contact importers, basic list management and segmentation, and basic reporting features.

The major differences? MailChimp includes automation and A/B testing in its free plan; Benchmark does not. Benchmark, however gives you free 24/7 customer support; you have to have a paid plan to access MailChimp’s customer service. Still, for only $10/month, MailChimp gives you more features than you’d get with Benchmark at $13.99/month.

MailChimp logoWinner: MailChimp

Features

 BenchmarkMailChimp
BenchmarkMailChimp
Template Selection400+Hundreds
Template EditorWYSIWYG & HTMLWYSIWYG & HTML
Responsive DesignCheckmarkCheckmark
Image Hosting10MBUnlimited
Contact Manager/ImportCheckmarkCheckmark
Newsletter ArchivingCheckmarkCheckmark
Social Media MarketingCheckmarkCheckmark
RSS Feed IntegrationCheckmarkCheckmark
AutoresponderCheckmarkCheckmark
SMS (Texting)Integration
SurveysCheckmarkCheckmark
List SegmentationCheckmarkCheckmark
Allows Attachments
Google AnalyticsCheckmarkCheckmark
Spam Score (Checking)CheckmarkCheckmark
Reporting/StatsCheckmarkCheckmark
Private (Dedicated) IP Address$28.95/monthCheckmark
Split A/B TestingCheckmarkCheckmark
Trigger Based MessagingCheckmarkCheckmark
Developer APICheckmarkCheckmark
Customer SupportLive Chat, Email, Phone (Hours Unlisted)Live Chat, Email

Both Benchmark and MailChimp have an impressive set of features with their free and paid plans to satisfy most small to medium business needs. We give MailChimp the edge in this category, although it’s a close call. In addition to what we’ve already covered in this article, some key differences include:

  • MailChimp’s Developer API and the number of apps/integrations offered far surpasses what you’ll get with Benchmark.
  • Benchmark provides demographic list segmentation capability whereas MailChimp does not.
  • MailChimp’s inbox preview features are more advanced than what Benchmark offers.

MailChimp logoWinner: MailChimp

Video Of Email Marketing Features And How They Work

Although MailChimp has a slight edge over Benchmark for overall features, Benchmark created a video we find gives you a good, quick overview of common email marketing features that most providers offer, so you can get some additional ideas as to what you might use one of these services for.

Overall Winner

MailChimp and Benchmark have a lot of things in common, so this battle was a close call. We do recommend Benchmark for email marketing newbies over MailChimp. Benchmark’s customer support access and reputation are better than MailChimp, which could make all the difference if you’re new to email marketing programs.

MailChimp gets our vote for more seasoned email marketers, or if you just need a bit more bang for your buck. MailChimp’s advanced features have the edge over Benchmark’s; you get unlimited image hosting, and they offer significantly more integrations/apps (and a powerful developer API) compared to Benchmark. But it’s worth looking into both in more detail — and you can try each out with their fantastic free plans!

MailChimp logoWinner: MailChimp

What About Other Email Marketing Providers?

How do Benchmark and MailChimp stack up against their competitors? Check out our Email Marketing Provider Showdown, where we review more than 20 companies. There you’ll find key features, pros and cons, pricing, and even our “best of” picks for different business types and needs. We also include a large comparison table to help you easily see the differences side by side.

Are added features important enough for you to go beyond a free plan?

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 "Benchmark vs MailChimp: Battle of the Email Marketing Giants"

newest oldest most voted
Deborah
I believe everyone should take a real good look at MailChimp. I recently tried to do their pop-up creation and lo and behold there are no instructions on to how to make it work other than to seek advice from a developer. You can read for yourself under adding a pop-up form to your website at mail chimp. Why supply a code if you can’t guide customers on how to use it. Still waiting on answers from developers at Quora while searching alternatives to Mailchimp. As a new customer, I’m not impressed with the service.
Mailchimp was my first email marketing software and from the two I’d choose it, though as the needs grow it’s sometimes time for change. For me it was GetResponse as the next step. It also offers marketing automation.
RWynn
Personally, I am a huge fan of Mailchimp for many reason! It’s super easy to use, so great for beginners. And even advanced users too! They have everything you’d expect from an email marketing company (stats, inbox preview, drag and drop editors, sign up boxes etc) and it’s FREE for up to 2000 subscribers. For most small businesses it’s a great place to start then you can always upgrade down the road. I also love how you can manage multiple accounts all from one log in.

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