It’s one of the most common questions people ask when they’re setting up an online business: Which bulk email service should I use? And it’s a legitimate question, there are a bunch of options available and they’re all different. Some hugely different, some subtly so.
Choosing the right email service for your online business is one of the most important decisions you’ll make. After all, if the service you choose is complicated, hard to understand, or doesn’t work the way your brain thinks (yes, that’s a legitimate reason to not choose a service), you’re unlikely to want to ever send an email. In the end, it’s not nearly so much about deliverability or automations (although those are important) as it is about being easy to use and something you enjoy working in.
With no further ado, today I’m taking you for an in-depth review of Active Campaign so you can determine if it might be right for you – and if it’s got the features and integrations you need to build your email list.
What is ActiveCampaign?
At its core, ActiveCampaign is an email service provider. When you send emails for a business, you are not allowed to use personal email services such as gmail, yahoo or hotmail. In order to be in compliance with the law, you must use an email automation service designed for businesses.
ActiveCampaign is one such email company. It allows users to create and send beautiful emails using a variety of templates. It also allows you to create forms, lists, and segments of lists as your business grows and those options become important to you.
The beauty of ActiveCampaign is the way it will grow with your business. When first starting out, most businesses need very few features in their email service:
The ability to:
- Create a list
- Create an opt in form
- Collect email addresses
- Send emails
- Integrate with your landing page service
- Turn double opt in on or off
As your business grows, however, your needs will too. And ActiveCampaign has everything you need including:
- Great Deliverability
- Landing Pages
- Email Automations & Sequences
- Advanced Tagging & Segmenting
- Lead & Contact Scoring
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
ActiveCampaign Comparison with Other Email Service Providers
For years I’ve recommended email service providers MailChimp, Aweber, ActiveCampaign and Get Response. But things have changed and I determined it was time to take a fresh look so I did a series of reviews on ActiveCampaign, Aweber and Mailerlite.
ActiveCampaign came out as my favorite. Its ability to grow with your business as you need more features and services makes it easy to master in bite sized chunks. It doesn’t overwhelm with too many features when you’re first getting started like Infusionsoft, Keap or Ontraport, but provides sophisticated tracking, automations and a CRM when you’re ready. It also has great customer support which is really important when you’re first getting started.
One of the most important things to realize when choosing your email service, however, is that you should not choose the one that someone else recommends – you should choose the one that is best for you and your business.
To help you decide, I’ve created a walkthrough of ActiveCampaign so you can see if it looks interesting enough to sign up for a free trial.
ActiveCampaign Pricing: Which Plan Should I Choose?
After you’ve determined which email service is right for you by signing up for a few free trials and playing around to see if you feel comfortable setting up a list, a form and an email, I recommend you sign up for the smallest package possible.
Most email services charge based on the number of active subscribers you have in your account. You also need to consider, however, which features you will need right away.
ActiveCampaign, for example, only offers landing pages at the Plus level. Plus is significantly more each month than Lite, which starts at just $9/month. But if you are already using Leadpages, or ClickFunnels or Kajabi you may not need landing pages because you can create them using a different service.
Once you’ve decided on the service you want to use, there’s no reason to go for their biggest and most comprehensive package. It’s easy enough to upgrade when you’re ready and, as long as you’re not changing to a different email service, upgrading is painless and fast.
If you want a full featured email service that is intuitive and won’t overwhelm, yet is robust enough to grow with your business. You can’t go wrong with ActiveCampaign!
Want to take a peek inside of some other email services as well? Click to find my Insider’s Peek of Aweber & Mailerlite.