There sure are a lot of email marketing tools around these days.
When it comes to managing your email marketing strategy, you’ve got options all the way from budget-friendly solutions like MailerLite, to super scientific data-driven software like Klaviyo.
It’s enough to get your head in a spin.
So, why are there so many email marketing options to choose from?
Simple, because first of all, more than half of marketers see email as their biggest source of ROI. Secondly, no-one feels like managing hundreds of emails and thousands of subscribers manually each day.
While choosing the right software can seem like a nightmare in itself, it helps to start with some of the top-performing tools on the market.
For instance, GetResponse and MailChimp are two of the biggest email celebs in the industry.
Introducing GetResponse and MailChimp
MailChimp, starting in 2001, pretty much became the unofficial mascot of email marketing.
For years, whenever someone spoke about autoresponders and drip campaigns, you could pretty much bet that they were using MailChimp. It was one of the most accessible (and affordable) options for email marketing around.
GetResponse, on the other hand, appeared (to an extent) in 1998, when CEO Simon Grabowski brought a new autoresponder to the market.
Gradually, a selection of extra features appeared in the software, making GetResponse a major contender for automated campaigns.
As MailChimp began to struggle to maintain its fans with a sudden price restructure and some wobbly rebranding, GetResponse gained traction by claiming it was the “World’s Easiest Email Marketing Tool.”
But which solution will actually benefit your advertising campaign?
That’s what we’re here to find out.
GetResponse vs MailChimp: Pricing
Budgeting is such a bore.
But it’s also a crucial part of running your business.
If you want to thrive in today’s competitive marketplace, you’ve gotta pinch those pennies.
So, which email marketing tool is the most affordable?
GetResponse gives you a lot of ways to customize how much you pay. For instance, you can choose exactly how many subscribers you have and pay according to list size.
Additionally, there are pretty hefty discounts for people who pay one or two years at a time.
If you have around 1,000 subscribers (which is still a pretty low number for many companies, here’s what you can expect to pay on each of GetResponse’s plans:
- Basic: $15 per month for landing pages, automation templates, surveys, Facebook ads, exit popups, and most importantly – unlimited emails.
- Plus: $49 for everything in “Basic” plus a bunch of list-building and sales funnels, webinar features, and a simple CRM.
- Professional: $99 for everything in “Plus” as well as automation builders, webinars, paid webinars, collaboration tools, and more.
All of that seems pretty straight forward at first, but there are parts of the GetResponse pricing structure I don’t understand.
First of all, you get unlimited emails in every package – which is awesome – but then GetResponse delivers a gut kick by telling us we can only tag and score our leads in the “Professional” account.
What’s that about? Tagging is usually a standard feature for most email marketing tools.
The pricing seems to be all over the place, with expensive capabilities in low-tier plans, and a few basic features dedicated to high-cost packages.
What’s more, just like most email tools, the more subscribers you have, the more money you’ll have to dish out. For up to $100,000 subscribers, you’re looking at $580 a month for the “Pro” plan.
Users with over 100,000 subscribers need to request an Enterprise quote from the GetResponse team.
The prices overall for GetResponse aren’t bad – but they’re a bit confusing.
I’d definitely recommend using the free trial to figure out whether you can realistically rely on GetResponse to deliver the kind of tools you need in the package you can afford.
So, what about MailChimp pricing?
Well, the company recently overhauled its Pricing structure, so if you thought you knew how much you had to pay for MailChimp before now, think again.
Overall, MailChimp seems pretty affordable – particularly since you can rely on a free tier to get you started if you just need a handful of basic tools:
This free tier certainly sets MailChimp out as a go-to option over GetResponse for people with a really small budget. As there’s no “free for life” option from GetResponse.
However, remember that you’re really going to only get some fundamental tools here.
You won’t get access to all of the email templates MailChimp offers on free, nor will you get A/B testing, or 24/7 support. Plus, you’ll have the headache of MailChimp branding on all of your emails – which is a huge bummer.
At first glance, the MailChimp Premium plan seems massively expensive compared to the other options. However, you do get the benefit of things like:
- Phone support
- Multivariate testing
- Unlimited seats and role-based access
Weirdly, “advanced segmentation” is also reserved for the $299.00 option here too, although you can place people into basic lists and groups if you have a lower-priced package too.
To make budgeting a bit easier, MailChimp does offer a few bonuses, like rates for non-profits with 15% off, and two-factor authentication discounts. That means that you get 10% off for free months if you use two-factor authentication on your MailChimp account. Handy.
MailChimp comes out on top in pricing because it offers a free tier for up to 2,000 subscribers, and generally gives you a cheaper price point for more contacts. However, if you want the best features from MailChimp, you will need to pay extra.
For a much less expensive option all around, users can consider MailerLite (check out our MailerLite review and MailerLite vs Mailchimp comparison) instead.
GetResponse vs MailChimp: Features
MailChimp and GetResponse are pretty similar on the surface.
They both let you:
- Import and manage subscriber lists and capture data with website sign-up forms
- Design and customize HTML newsletters
- Automate emails with autoresponders
- Monitor reports and statistics on your email marketing
Additionally, MailChimp and GetResponse both claim to be “all-in-one” offerings that make it simpler to manage not just your emails, but your sales funnels too, with pipelines, webinars, and CRM basics. So, what can we expect from these tools?
GetResponse vs MailChimp: Segmentation
There’s no one-size-fits-all in email marketing.
The content that speaks to one customer won’t necessarily connect with another.
If you want to personalize your connections with customers and benefit from things like brand loyalty and higher conversions, then you need a way to manage your lists.
GetResponse is pretty handy when it comes to segmentation.
Imagine you have a mailing list on GetResponse that you’ve separated into 5 different segments.
You can easily message each of those five segments separately, just by checking the relevant boxes when you’re sending out your newsletters. You can also exclude specific segments with ease if your messages don’t apply to them.
GetResponse also makes it easy to exclude specific people from within those lists, depending on things like “Tags” – if you’re lucky enough to have the higher-paid service. With a more comprehensive plan, you can decide how to email people based on their location, demographics, interests, previous behavior, and more.
Adding, managing, and sending emails to subscribers is an absolute breeze.
Alternatively, if you tried to do similar segmentation on other email marketing tools, like AWeber, for instance, you’d have to create dozens of different lists.
GetResponse’s efforts to become an “all-in-one” tool with a basic CRM functionality also means that you can track customer activity in each segment too. When your customers are linked to your autoresponders, you can create more sophisticated pipelines.
You might even want to automatically move specific subscribers into new lists depending on how they respond to your emails – and GetResponse lets you do that with just one click.
It’s pretty cool stuff, and it only gets more advanced the more you pay.
So, how does MailChimp add up?
Pretty well overall.
MailChimp offers you the option to build segments that define and separate your customers. However, you only have the choice between “Groups” and “Segments,” and that’s it.
While segments are lists of your new subscribers and recent purchases, your groups are smaller chunks of customers that you can separate based on behavior.
With MailChimp, you can combine up to five negative or positive conditional relationships. For instance, you can create segments based on what email clients people use, and whether they’ve interacted with previous campaigns.
Here’s the biggest issue with MailChimp though – advanced email segmentation is only available for $299 per month. There’s a severe lack of options on the lower versions, and you can’t just adapt your lists based on what your customers do over time.
What’s more, if you want to target people from different groups at the same time – MailChimp doesn’t allow this, as every list is siloed. That’s a huge downside because it means you have to continually create new lists from scratch.
Compared to GetResponse, MailChimp’s segmentation is awkward, clunky, and just disappointing.
Another big win to GetResponse here, which makes it a lot simpler for people to manage their segments and send personalized emails.
For more impressive segmentation, I’d recommend something like Hubspot, which integrates in-depth with your sales and CRM strategies.
GetResponse vs. MailChimp: Automation and Autoresponders
Autoresponder functionality is probably the most essential feature you can look at when you’re searching for the right marketing tool.
I mean, can you imagine how exhausting it would be to try and manage all of your emails manually? I wouldn’t like to try…
GetResponse and MailChimp both offer autoresponder functionality, fortunately.
In fact, they’re known for delivering some of the best automation in the business, with triggers like opens, clicks, and purchases to ensure that you’re contacting the right people at the best times.
But which tool is better?
Well, personally, I have a bit of a soft spot for GetResponse when it comes to autoresponders – just because it’s so damn easy to use. All you need to do is click on “Create an Autoresponder” and choose exactly when you want to send your emails:
Once you’ve chosen a name and a due date for your responder, you can begin building your funnels.
Here’s where things get nifty.
With the GetResponse drag-and-drop builder, you can create the ultimate automation flow chart for your drip campaign, choosing exactly when you want each message to go out, and what kind of triggers you want to use.
You can even pick a specific template from GetResponse’s list of pre-made options to create solutions that do things like “Welcoming” your audience, qualifying leads, creating online courts, and so much more:
If you’re new to building autoresponders, GetResponse does hold your hand every step of the way.
However, that doesn’t mean that you have to settle for basic or beginner stuff. You get really sophisticated flow-chart style journeys which are super-straightforward to implement:
If you’d rather do something a little more basic than what you can see on the flowchart above, then you can also use the traditional “sequencer” interface on GetResponse too.
This just means that you can click on a template and add triggers, conditions, and tags according to your specific preferences – easy peasy.
GetResponse also offers something called an “Auto Funnel” where you can create drip sequences combined with landing pages and sign-up pages to build specific lists and sell products.
In comparison, MailChimp also allows businesses to create sophisticated subscriber journeys.
However, the approach on MailChimp is a lot more template-based. Rather than building from scratch, it’s easier to just choose a template and create a set of automated emails that you can tweak to meet with specific requirements.
MailChimp’s range of templated options makes it really easy to get started with your autoresponders – which is great for beginners. Additionally, I love the fact that you get to design your automation based on specific goals.
However, GetResponse just feels way more immersive when it comes to building your drip funnels. The system seems more flexible and intuitive, and it’s really impressive to see your funnels laid out in front of you flow-chart style.
The biggest issue with MailChimp’s automation and autoresponders is that they’re basically impossible to access in anything underneath the “Standard” plan. That means that you need to be willing to agree to a specific price point if you want any automation at all.
Pay less than $14.99, and you can only send basic one-off emails like order notifications and welcome emails.
Still, if you do decide to upgrade, the good news is that you can integrate MailChimp with your website and other tools, so you can set up automation based on how people interact with your content outside of the inbox.
This, again, makes it easier to customize your emails to suit your target audience – but it’s only available on higher-priced plans.
GetResponse comes out on top again here – making this review very one-sided so far. The automation is really a lot better with GetResponse, and it’s available without having to commit to higher prices.
For a particularly impressive Autoresponder feature, however, I’d recommend checking out the options from ActiveCampaign (review).
GetResponse vs. MailChimp: Email Templates
Alright, so you know how you can segment your audience, and which tools you’ll use to deliver automated emails to your customers too.
Now, let’s take a look at the kind of email templates you can use to catch your customer’s eye.
Both GetResponse and MailChimp offer a wide range of email templates available out-of-the-box.
Though MailChimp has a selection of more than 100 templates to choose from, it doesn’t come close to GetResponse’s offering of more than 500 templates.
Plus, let’s face it – GetResponse’s templates are just pretty.
Since there are a drag-and-drop email and HTML code editor included with both GetResponse and MailChimp, the template experience is very similar.
GetResponse does have a host of fantastic pre-loaded stock images to choose from, however, which is pretty impressive.
Plus, with GetResponse, you can look at your emails in “preview” mode to see how they’ll appear on smartphones and other devices.
While most other email marketing tools allow you to check out your templates in smartphone mode, you can also “Flip” the appearance of your message too. This means you can see what your emails are going to look like in portrait or landscape mode.
Unfortunately, one thing missing with GetResponse is the ability to use web fonts within your content. You’ve got a pretty limited range of fonts to choose from here, which means your options to customize your emails are pretty limited.
Despite that, GetResponse makes building attractive emails pretty easy. With templates to choose from that suit virtually any vertical – it’s hard to go wrong:
Plus, you can very easily add new features to each template with things like new buttons, social media tags, and even your own logo:
Overall, GetResponse makes email templates immersive, fun and easy to use.
The same could be said of MailChimp, which features one of the most impressive solutions for email template building on the market. The great thing about MailChimp is that it lets you show off your creative side with your emails, by allowing you to build your content almost entirely from scratch.
You can choose from a range of design options and templates, although some models are a bit outdated:
Like with GetResponse, if you don’t like what you find on the pre-made template option, you can use a drag-and-drop builder and HTML to adjust the appearance of your email too.
It’s easy to add things like social media buttons and images – just like in the GetResponse email builder. Plus, everything slots together perfectly – so you don’t have to worry about your formatting suffering when you’re getting used to a new tool.
One thing that I wasn’t super keen on with MailChimp was the position of the “Next” and “Save” buttons on the interface, which you often have to scroll right to the bottom of the page to find.
However, I liked the interface of MailChimp a little better than GetResponse. It just seems cleaner, sleeker, and easier to use all around.
GetResponse comes out on top when it comes to the number of templates you have to choose from.
However, MailChimp is much easier to use when it comes to editing those templates. If you like customizing your emails, MailChimp is a better choice.
GetResponse vs. MailChimp: Usability and User Experience
Ultimately, an email marketing tool has to be easy to use if you want to get the most out of it.
The user interfaces offered by MailChimp and GetResponse are both pretty great. However, they’re also very different.
MailChimp takes a very minimalistic approach to its UI, with big white spaces and large, easy-to-read fonts. On the other hand, GetResponse has more of a drop-down menu approach to usability.
Since it claims to be the easiest marketing tool around, GetResponse should stand out from the crowd with usability. I logged on expecting to find the most accessible software I’ve ever used.
What I found was a pretty straightforward UI. Adding email lists was straightforward – particularly with the option to bulk load with CSV files.
When I clicked through to the dashboard, things felt pretty neat and tidy. You could see just about everything you might need to create an autoresponder strategy or start upgrading your emails displayed beautifully in front of you.
There was no avalanche of buttons and options to worry about like you get with other email marketing tools like AWeber. Everything seemed pretty straightforward.
So far, so good.
Now here’s the thing I really loved most about GetResponse – it’s Quick Actions functionality.
If like me, you hate scrolling through lists to find the feature you need, then GetResponse’s Quick Actions list is sure to appeal to you.
Here, you can find some of the most essential tools in your email marketing portfolio in a single panel.
There’s no need to use the navigation panel at all – I loved it.
MailChimp also offers a pretty great user experience.
I personally consider MailChimp one of my go-to email marketing choices for its easy-to-use interface and adaptable templates.
With MailChimp, everything from building autoresponders to checking your reporting stats is super straightforward. I loved the fact that there’s so much whitespace on the UI. Nothing feels cluttered or overwhelming – which can be a common problem with email tools.
If you’re just getting started with MailChimp, you can also get plenty of guidance from the UI to guide you through using the tool one step at a time.
The only thing you might need to get used to here is that it can be challenging to find the tools you need at first. For instance, to find the Landing Page forms, I had to click all the way through the Audience segment and go to the Landing Pages link at the bottom of the page.
Why have you put Landing Pages down there MailChimp?
MailChimp is certainly very easy to use, but I have to go with GetResponse as the winner thanks to it’s amazing Quick Actions panel. This feature really does make it a lot easier to jump straight into your email campaigns.
GetResponse vs MailChimp: A/B Testing and Analytics
A big part of running a successful email marketing campaign, is learning how to optimize.
As you continue to develop your business and speak to your customers, you’ll discover useful insights that help you to deliver better content to your target market.
A/B testing, and analytics can help with this.
When it comes to A/B Testing, GetResponse is one of the best tools on the market – providing the option to create up to five variations of every email you send.
You can change content, form fields, subject lines and more, to make sure that your messages resonate with your audience.
It’s easy to track how each of your campaigns is doing by checking your home-page UI. Plus, you can dive a little deeper into the analytics of your campaigns by navigating to the Reports section.
Here, you can see everything from how your auto-responders are driving engagement, to what your click-through rate looks like.
GetResponse even gives you the option to add tracking codes to your emails, so you can check things like where your customers come from, and what kind of devices that they’re opening your messages from.
Once you gather your data, GetResponse also allows you to organize it; however, you want for better reporting.
You can choose between charts, graphs, and tables to amaze your business leaders.
GetResponse also features one-click segmentation so you can automatically create sub-segments of your customers when you see who opens your emails the most or start to notice people who don’t open your messages at all.
Alternatively, on the MailChimp plan, you can only A/B test 3 different versions of your email – which is common among other email tools too.
If you’re just testing small lists, this shouldn’t be too much of a big deal. However, if you want something more in-depth, then you might need to switch to GetResponse.
On the other hand, you could always consider upgrading to the Premium version of MailChimp for $299 per month if you want some super-advanced A/B testing.
For an eye-watering price of $299 per month, you’ll be able to split 8 variants of your newsletters against each other.
When it comes to more in-depth reporting and analytics, MailChimp also gives you everything you need to check basic metrics like click-through rate, open rates, unsubscribes, bounces, and so on.
However, you don’t get the same options for showcasing your results in graphs and charts like you’d get with GetResponse.
One thing that you will receive with MailChimp, however, is the option to check your results against helpful industry baselines.
This is super useful if you want to see if you’re performing at about the average when you get started with your email campaigns.
For A/B testing and reporting, GetResponse comes out on top if you’re looking to invest in a “basic” package.
On the other hand, if money is no object, then MailChimp offers some amazing advanced tools at the Premium level.
GetResponse vs MailChimp: Integrations
Integrations are how you add another layer of functionality to your email marketing tools.
The more your email marketing software plays nicely with others; the more advanced your content can become. MailChimp recently lost their integrations with Shopify – which is a massive bummer for them, but they still have a lot of integrations to offer.
Additionally, GetResponse has some close relationships with big services like Facebook and PayPal.
GetResponse makes it very easy to link your accounts on GetResponse with various useful tools. There are dozens of choices, ranging from CMS integrations with Drupal, to shopping cart options. You can check out the range of integrations here.
On the other hand, even though MailChimp is still getting over that rough break-up with Shopify, it still has hundreds of different native integrations to offer, including options with BigCommerce, WooCommerce, and more.
MailChimp also allows you to expand your integration options with workarounds through Zapier and Automat.io.
MailChimp has a broader range of integrations to offer right now than GetResponse. For even more integrations, you can consider an alternative option like Hubspot.
GetResponse vs. MailChimp: Customer Support
Finally, let’s take a quick look at the kind of customer support you can get from MailChimp and GetResponse.
After all, if you’re spending some serious cash on your automation tools, you’re going to want some great support too.
GetResponse offers a Live Chat function, which is particularly appealing to me – as I prefer live chat over phone calls and emails. Sending a message under the pseudonym “Mark” led to a response in less than five minutes, complete with a handy list of instructions to help answer my question.
GetResponse also offers the option to get in touch via social media, snail mail, or email.
However, you can’t get in touch with anyone over the phone if you’re looking for that human connection.
On the plus side, if you’re a DIY person – then there are plenty of blog posts, infographics, podcasts, and videos on the Help Centre to guide you through using your new tool.
There’s even a GetResponse University available, complete with email marketing courses.
MailChimp provides less support, depending on how much you’re willing to pay.
If you’re on the free version of the app, you can pretty much just access the “Guides and Tutorials” feature or send a message via Snail Mail. There aren’t even any videos or infographics in the help guide to support visual learners.
If you want some real 24/7 support from email, then you need to pay at least $9.99 for it.
On the other hand, if you want phone assistance, then you’re going to need to go on the $299.00 plan. This means that MailChimp values its service agent’s voices at around $300. They must have some pretty dulcet tones at that price.
GetResponse definitely offers better customer service – regardless of how much you’re willing to pay. MailChimp seems very unwilling to support its free and lower-paying customers.
GetResponse vs. MailChimp: Which Should You Choose?
Both GetResponse and MailChimp are impressive and feature-packed tools.
However, for the most part, I would come down on the side of GetResponse when it comes to choosing a better marketing solution for 2019. While MailChimp might have a free tier to offer for people on a budget, GetResponse has so much more value to provide.
With GetResponse, you get a stronger segmentation strategy, better autoresponders, and even more in-depth A/B testing and analytics.
MailChimp is a little cleaner interface-wise, and it’s very easy to use – but that doesn’t really make up for lack of functionality.
Choose GetResponse if:
- You want excellent automation and autoresponders
- You need segmentation without paying a fortune for premium features
- You love creating easy and straightforward funnels
- You need a wide variety of templates to choose from
- You prefer having plenty of customer support
Choose MailChimp if:
- You need a free tier plan
- You want a super straightforward and clean UI
- You’re looking for a really attractive email template builder
- You don’t need a wide range of advanced analytics
- You require plenty of integrations
Here’s a link to a free trial of GetResponse if you want to give this tool a try before you buy it. Similarly, you can check out MailChimp here.
If you want to do some more research, check out our guide to email marketing tools here.