When I asked you to name an email Marketing tool, what would you say? Whatcounts
MailChimp? Aweber? ActiveCampaign?
Like many online industries now, email advertising has been Dominated by the same large players for the previous decade. Which means they get encouraged very deeply and accomplish a lot of mindshare.
Now and then, however, an Underdog disrupts the market, inducing long-time users to question their loyalties.
MailerLite has done exactly that.
So now, in this review, I will be tearing MailerLite from limb To limb to see whether it stands its ground against the big boys…
…and, more importantly, whether youshould consider making the change.
– Uses tag-based system (called Groups)
– Powerful Segmentation using principles
– Custom Fields for advanced email personalization
– Advanced Campaign kinds (auto-resend, A/B, etc.. )
– Simple to Use email builder/template editor
– Practical Email elements such as countdowns and product boxes
– Intuitive Type, popup and landing page builder
– Supports Automations using visual workflows
– Offers Both readable and in-depth reporting
– A Fraction of the price compared to most other options
– Strict Approval process
– Few email Templates available
– Very few Form templates available
– Can’t Create emails without leaving the visual workflow builder
– No Support for website tracking Whatcounts
Like most email advertising providers Nowadays, You’ll Need to Go through a review process before being able to properly use the software.
When you first register, you’ll be asked to complete your profile.
This includes information such as your organization name, site, Industry, address, business size, record size and even the type of material you plan to send.
Then, you need to verify your Website (or domain ).
This remains part of the acceptance process, and MailerLite will Simply inquire which email is associated to that domain in order that they can email you a confirmation link.
Once you’ve completed those Steps, you’ll need to wait it out.
The MailerLite team will review your application, assess your Site, and determine whether you are a fantastic fit for their services.
(Quite simply, they’re making sure you’re not a spammer/scammer)
As shown above, you’ll nevertheless be Able to utilize the software to create campaigns and perform with the features, but you won’t be able to send anything until accepted.
I was”partially” approved within a few hours, which gave me a Temporary limitation of 500 subscribers.
Here’s what the email said:
However, while these measures are not perfect for getting started, it Does help prevent unscrupulous users from damaging everyone else’s deliverability.
If you’re anything like me, you’ll rely upon automations to handle The majority of your email marketing.
(We’ll get to automations soon, do not worry.)
But whether it’s a brand new blog post, podcast, or timely Announcement, there is always a reason to send a more instant email.
That’s where’Campaigns’ come in.
Clicking the new’Produce Campaign’ will provide you several choices.
– Regular effort: A Conventional broadcast email.
– A/B split effort: Multiple email Versions, including subject line, from name and, yes, even content. (Woop!)
– Auto resend: Resend to subscribers who Don’t start your broadcast email, together with the option of changing the subject line and email articles.
– RSS effort: Produce a recurring campaign That sends new content to readers using your site’s RSS feed.
Aside from a few added choices, the Majority of these will follow Exactly the exact same step-by-step process of a normal campaign.
So let’s walk you through it.
Once you click to create your effort, you’ll be asked to Pick a favorite editor, whether that be the dragn’ drop, rich text or HTML.
Otherwise, you can switch to the Templates tab and select from one of their pre-designed email templates — that will move you to the dragn’ drop editor .
At the time of writing, there are 21 email templates to choose From which is somewhat on the low side, but the layouts are super modern.
And, of course, if you’d just Prefer to reuse a previous email, you can click on the’Recent Emails’ tab.
For this instance, I will select the first template from the library.
The editor is easy to work with, Which makes customizing these templates a 5-minute job.
You can also utilize the blocks in the sidebar to include distinct Types of articles to your email, including videos, product columns, and societal connections.
After making your adjustments, just click’Done Editing’ and you will Be carried to the recipients’ choices where you are able to choose your groups or sections.
The advanced tab also allows you To build segment-like rules , in the event your targeting is not quite right.
Finally, before sending, you’ll get to the’Program’ screen.
This is where you control when your broadcast email should go Out, if that is immediately, at a set time/date, or according to your readers time zones.
Impressive, right? Whatcounts
Handling Your Subscribers
Possessing granular control over your readers is arguably among The most essential aspects of any email marketing program today.
Because highly personalized campaigns Are Essential if You are searching to increase clicks, opens, and, above all, your own conversions.
And while most providers Permit You to”label” readers in order To target them effectively, MailerLite utilizes a slightly different approach.
When you start up your subscriber dash, you’ll see two Choices; Segments and Groups.
Segments are essentially rules.
Your readers belong to a segment only when they meet the Specified principles, and will be automatically added or eliminated so.
Here’s what establishing a rule looks like:
Notice how you can also combine Principles, as well as an alternate rule when the first doesn’t exist.
Pretty smart, eh?
The next tab is for groups, and despite the difference in title, These act much like your usual”tagging” system.
(MailerLite even debated Changing the title to’Tags’, but ultimately decided against it)
Unlike Segments, Groups are updated manually or via an Automation rule — which we will get into in a moment — and they have no value aside from what you call them.
As you start to use this platform, you’ll begin to understand Where Segments and Groups are typically used, however, MailerLite offers a hand in case you’re uncertain:
Basically, groups are much more of a Deliberate activity on a per-subscriber basis, whereas Segments permit you to lump multiple subscribers collectively according to a frequent denominator.
A tad confusing, I’ll admit… but I believe it is a fair trade-off For the added flexibility. Besides, they are discretionary.
Last, the’Fields’ tab is used to customize your email copy.
You’ll notice that MailerLite has Already populated this area with their own areas, such as title, business, and country.
If You Would like to create your own custom fields, you can do so by Clicking on the’Add new field’ button.
So how do they actually work?
You can either upload a CSV file of your subscribers together with Your custom field information in separate columns… or can simply add these fields to your types which will only apply to future subscribers.
Here’s a screenshot of a test area I created and added to a form:
I will not go too much to the form Stuff here since I have an entire section on that below, but this is the strategy I would recommend if you wished to use this feature.
Again, as Soon as You’ve collected your custom field information from new Subscribers, you are able to pull them into your email content and subject line.
Just click the’Personalization’ drop down and choose your Customized field.
I am barely scratching the surface Of what’s possible with custom fields, but it is important to know that this is a feature you can use.
Overall, it is fair to say MailerLite has their subscriber Management and personalization features on stage. Whatcounts
If you are not impressed with what you’ve seen up to Now, then maybe The webpage builder will tickle your fancy.
After choosing’Landing Pages’ from the forms page, you will be Able to select from 8 pre-designed templates.
Again, while the template selection Isn’t winning any awards, it does offer a fantastic base to work from if, for example most of us, you do not have that natural eye for layout.
I went ahead and selected the’Lead Generation’ template, though They all finally do the identical job; collect an email address.
This time, the editor will Provide you 17 building blocks to Further construct or change your landing page.
Now, I have used my fair share of Visual page builders, and it is better than a few dedicated solutions *cough* WPBakery.
Together with the basic building blocks, you can use components like Hero sections, popup buttons, reviews and countdown timers.
No, it won’t be replacing landing Page builders such as Thrive Architect or even LeadPagesanytime soon, but credit where credit due, this thing over-delivers on all 3 kind types.
Form Builder Tool
Unlike some email advertising tools, MailerLite really offers a Adequate set of form building tools.
Also, but you can also create popups and landing pages Through this same interface, so there is a lot to cover .
Let’s begin with your Bog-standard embedded form.
These forms are first created inside MailerLite in order to get An embed code, which you can then place on your site to display it on particular pages.
Despite starting off super fundamental, the form designer allows you To personalize everything in the kind style, subjects, background, name, enter fields and, of course, the button.
Form text may also be edited directly, which gives you a chance To envision your own copy in real-time.
It would’ve been nice to have Some templates here, but as you know, there’s more to some form than just its appearance.
Clicking the’Settings’ tab will Make It Possible for you to configure the way the Form works, such as adding extra fields and establishing a custom success page.
(There’s even a GDPR compliance option. Sweet.)
And speaking of the success page…
…MailerLite also lets you customize the default message, Which can replace the embedded kind also prevents users from redirecting.
Last but certainly not least, you Can check the way your form screens on cellular by shifting the toggle to responsive mode.
You won’t be able to make any layout changes , but it makes Sense to check, nevertheless.
So that’s an overview of the Embedded form but as I said before, you can even create popup forms in MailerLite.
While the Vast Majority of the setup Procedure is identical, you will find A few differences I’d like to point out.
Unlike embedded forms, you can choose between a set of Templates:
While this isn’t the most Comprehensive choice, they do provide a good foundation to work from and the editor is at least as simple to use with this form type.
Clicking on the’E-commerce’ template takes me to a preview Before moving to the editor.
Here, you’ll notice there are some new choices under form types This time around:
Considering paid tools such as Thrive Leads exist for both ribbons and slide-in forms, it’s pretty impressive to observe this level of control over popup types.
And, as before, you can perform the styling options to get it Matched up with your own branding.
Last, you can Select the near Behaviour of your type under the’Settings’ tab.
The default option is that the X icon, but you can swap this out for A”No thanks” text option, or have .
That is where most email Marketing platforms will leave you, but MailerLite has yet another trick up its sleeve.
Reporting & Analytics
Like most tools, you’ll find a summary of your campaign Statistics in the main dashboard.
Here you’ll see everything from effort open and click info, Subscriber growth, automation stats, and kind signups.
Clicking into any effort will Give you special reporting for that effort.
This is where you’ll discover a few more advanced statistics such as Unsubscribes, spam complaints, bounces, reading surroundings, email client and more.
This should be plenty of Information for the average user…
…but in Case You really want To dig into the numbers, it is possible to click into different areas of this report to get a more detailed breakdown.
You can find some real gems under These reports.
By Way of Example, the’View Mail’ tab also shows a click map, so You can see your readers interacted with your mails in relation to one another.
Reports for automations will also be Accessible under the’Automations’ tab, even although I found these to be less insightful than campaign reports.
Here’s a Fast example:
Total, MailerLite does a Stellar job with their reporting interface, and most will find the available statistics more than enough to fulfill their demands.
What’s email marketing without a dash of automation?
For many reading this, MailerLite’s automation capabilities Could easily make or break this review.
The good news? If you’ve ever used a visual workflow builder, then You will immediately feel at home here…
Much like the rest of MailerLite, That the automations interface is simple, clean and easy to navigate — something that certainly can’t be said for every email advertising program.
After setting your trigger, you can Start adding steps to your workflow.
These steps could be anything from sending an email, adding a Delay, a conditional split, or an action, such as transferring a contributor or updating their records.
Here’s a simple workflow I put together, where subscribers Are unsubscribed if they don’t open my email within 7 days.
There are innumerable Possibilities when it comes to workflow automations like this, and MailerLite ought to not have any trouble with the vast majority of use cases.
Granted, it’s not quite as Feature-rich as something such as ActiveCampaign because it lacks a number of the conditional elements. (Split, Go To, Goal, etc.. )
For example, there’s currently no automation for transferring Readers directly into a different automation.
That being said, most of these actions can Nevertheless Be achieved by moving Subscribers into various groups that activate new automation workflows. It’s simply much less efficient…. yet.
Another question of efficacy here is when generating new emails In the automation workflow builder.
After adding an email cube to The workflow, you will be asked to add your topic line that appears on the block itself.
From there, clicking the’Design email’ button will automatically fire up the Editor:
Now, you’ll be temporarily Redirected to the typical campaign creation wizard, which I covered earlier in the critique.
This time, but once you’ve established your email, clicking the ‘Done editing’ button will guide you back into the automations workflow rather than the usual sending alternatives.
Ultimately, your email will probably be Loaded into your automation.
A Wonderful touch here is having a thumbnail preview of your Email within your automation block, which means you can find an idea of what it contains at a glimpse.
While this procedure may seem like A grind on newspaper, it’s really much faster than what I am used to with other email marketing tools — ActiveCampaign being a great example.
On the other hand, if you’ve come over from something like ConvertKit where The editor is loaded inside the automations builder, you’ll probably find this a downgrade in functionality.
It is fast enough for me, Personally, however I guess it’s all relative.
Before I wrap up this section, there’s one Kind of automation You will not find in MailerLite, and that I think it’s important to highlight.
The ability to trigger an automation (or measure ) based on the way Readers interact with all the webpages on your site.
This kind of behavioral targeting just isn’t available in MailerLite at this time, so if it’s something you use or plan to use, you may want to skip this one. Whatcounts
The cost of MailerLite is among the tools largest Selling things, and let’s face it, most of us love a good bargain.
For starters, they offer an unlimited free plan that includes All attributes (including premium) to get up to 1,000 subscribers.
While there is some subtle Branding on your emails using this plan, it’s still an amazing option for those starting out.
And what about the premium programs?
It turns out, at around half the Price of this competition on average, MailerLite is undoubtedly among the least expensive options available on the market. Plus, if you are willing to pay yearly, you can also get a much greater discount.
In fact, I have not been able to find anything that does exactly the same job, cheaper.
MailerLite is among the email advertising tools The (very crowded) sector in recent decades, and that’s no simple feat.
While it is not as fast as ConvertKit, or as feature-rich As ActiveCampaign, or as template-heavy as MailChimp, it works exceptionally well at just about anything you can throw at it.
I find MailerLite strikes the perfect balance Between flexibility, speed and simplicity, and all at a price point you will seriously struggle to beat.
Thinking of giving it a spin? Let us know how it works for you From the comments. Whatcounts