Best Free Email Marketing Software 2021 Review

hi in this blog I’m going to compare some of the best free email marketing software’s that you can use to build your email subscriber base but more specifically the free plans that some of the most popular email marketing services offer and those are MailChimp mailer Lite send in blue and convert kit what I’ll be going over in this comparison and review article is the pricing the signup process the features and the benefits the landing page feature the ease of use and whether each and one of these are actually affiliate marketing friendly and of course I’ll share my insights as to what the standards are of each and one of these email platforms so stay tuned and watch this article to the end so that you can make an informed decision as to which email platform is best for you hi my name is OLS and on this channel I’ll make articles to help you start and grow a digital business so that you can work when where and how you want to so if that interests you be sure to hit that subscribe button below and turn on notifications so that you don’t miss a thing you know when you start implementing digital marketing into your business there are so many things to consider such as starting up a website registering a domain name content marketing social media marketing Google ads and so much more however there’s one important step that you should take and it’s actually crucial and that is to build an email subscriber base but the problem is if you’re just starting out and you’re on a limited budget or perhaps bootstrapping then you don’t have that much to put into the business and you’re not willing to pay $50 $100 even $200 a month just to send out emails to your subscribers which is why in this article I want to compare four different email marketing services that offer the free option that still allows you to build an email subscriber base and send out broadcasts emails now do know depending on when you’re watching this article some of the features and the plan might have changed so this article is only relevant to the time of this recording in addition it’s always wise to do your own due diligence and read each and one of these terms and conditions and acceptable years policy before making a decision as to which email platform to go with now let’s head on to the screen so that I can show you the pricing the features the benefits and everything else okay the first email platform that I want to go through is the most well-known and that is MailChimp we’re going to go again through the free option the free plan that each and one of these platforms offer so looking at the pricing table we’ve got free alright so here we’ve got context this is the number of contacts or subscribers that you can store in your MailChimp account for this one account and it’s two thousand subscribers for contacts in this case that you can store into your MailChimp account and how we’re going to compare each and one of these in terms of pricing is going to be based on 10,000 subscribers so going to melt him we are going to choose the standard plan calculate your pricing if we go here it’s going to give you a rough guide or the specific guide as to how much is going to cost now for the standard plan it starts at $99 a month so take note of that for the essentials obviously there’s less features if you do go with the essentials plan it’s going to come down to 74 dollars 99 all right so it’s between anywhere from seventy four ninety-nine all the way up to two hundred and ninety-nine dollars per month for its free premium plan so in terms of these sign-up process it’s quite straightforward there’s no approvals required all you need to do is just follow these steps into email username password sign up then you’ll need to verify and confirm your email address so there’s nothing much more to it in terms of the signup process in terms of features it’s quite feature-packed in my opinion because they are trying to target individuals all the way up to enterprises and agencies so it’s not just made for creators and bloggers and people who are just starting out this is for everyone and that’s what they want to do that’s their aim to gain quite a big market share in that space now on the home page if we go to marketing platform we can see there’s a marketing CRM audience dashboard tag segmentation behavioural targeting look like audience is branding there’s campaigns different types of campaigns so you can create and insights testing and tracking and analytics all that into one that you find in most email marketing services anyway so again MailChimp is quite feature pack so if you are looking for more advanced features then MailChimp may most likely will offer that okay next up what I want to talk about are the caveats of the free plan since this article is entirely based on the free plans of all four options here so with MailChimp the first and the biggest probably caveat is that you can’t send out automated emails so pre-loaded emails are at a scheduled time so let’s say you have some sort of seven-day email sequence or eCourse that you want to put out there for your subscribers to subscribe for then you can’t do that with MailChimp so what they do allow you to do is to send out a one-time broadcast to your email subscribers but anything that has to do with in terms of automating your emails at a predetermined day or time then that free option won’t allow you to do that okay next caveat is that you can only create one audience group so it’s simply just like a campaign just think of an audience group as a campaign that’s all it is but if you’re just starting out your you probably only have one audience group anyway so if you go under audience you can see here this audience has one contact one of them are subscribers so if you do want to create different audience groups for your business and you’re going to have to upgrade the next caveat with the free plan is that you can only send up to 10,000 emails per month with a limit of 2,000 emails per day so this doesn’t mean that you can send 10,000 times of your broadcast email it means that let’s say you have an email list of a thousand subscribers or contacts you can send out ten times for that month so that’s what it means by 10,000 sends per month however MailChimp does have an option to pay for additional credits if you do exceed that 10,000 per month limit now a few other things to note is that there’s only a select amount of email templates to choose from personally that doesn’t bother me since I only send out plain text emails with most of these platforms if you do go with the free plan you’re going to have to put like a powered by company which is MailChimp in this case at the moment so it’s going to show about something like powered by MailChimp under your opt-in form and also under on the footer of every email that you send out to your subscribers so this can be annoying for some since you don’t want that type of branding or watermark on every email that you send out but of course it is a free option anyway okay next up is the landing page feature does MailChimp have a landing page creator or builder well the answer is yes all you need to do is just go create landing page give it a name begin and it’s going to show a few templates here for me to choose from so let’s say I want this one here the lead capture template and as you can see there’s only a select amount of templates as well on the free plan all you need to do is just drag and drop edit what you want and that’s quite straightforward now let’s look at the next factor and that whether this platform allows affiliate marketing and the reason why I am using affiliate marketing as one of the factors in this preview and comparison is because I know many of you are promoting products as an affiliate and make a commission out of that and make money by doing so so this is one of the factors that you also also need to look for when you are going to register for an email marketing service so I’m on their legal page and the acceptable yes this is what you want to carefully read under prohibited content now if we go down a bit more we can see some industries have higher than average complaints which can jeopardize deliverability in order to maintain the liberal liability of our platform we do not allow businesses that offer these types of services products or content so if we scroll down we can see I feel that marketing is under this category of we do not allow so if you are considering doing or offering products as an affiliate then this is something you probably need to consider real hard now I do need to point out and clarify that affiliate marketing and affiliate links are different there is a difference between affiliate marketing and affiliate links now I got this answer because I did contact mail alight specifically because I was confused with the acceptable use policy old terms and conditions and I did say affiliate marketing is not allowed but I feel that links are so I’m going to use that the terms of email marketing services that they use to inform you what a feeling’ marketing and a few links are now this is the response I got from mail airline because I did want to clarify what the difference is between affiliate marketing affiliate links just so I can inform you as well as to what the difference is so first of all affiliate marketing as a business is prohibited on mail alight if your purpose for operating is to make money as an affiliate regardless of whether or not you have tried endorsed all know the product then you are unable to use mail online now from my understanding and after reading this affiliate marketing essentially means that if you solely rely making money from promoting other people’s products then mailer light won’t allow that however if you do have an existing business or a blog then you are allowed or permitted to use affiliate links in your emails I do understand why they put this in place because it hurts their reputation and deliverability if you’re feeling marketers are sending offer after offer and they’re getting low engagements so now I’m shifting a little here but I think it’s good to have a proper understanding of the difference between affiliate marketing and affiliate links so that you aren’t going to just conclude to say that MailChimp is not for you because if MailChimp does say that I feel that marketing is entirely not allowed then that pretty much makes up like 60 70 % or whatever the stats are of all their users because I’m sure that most of these users are also promoting other people’s products now with that out of the way what I want to share with you are the standouts of Mao chin in particular so number one is that you’re able to create shoppable landing pages so it’s integrated with square so MailChimp with square integration so there you can create your own e-commerce website all in that one platform and I think that’s what MailChimp wants to do and differentiate themselves amongst all the other email marketing platforms they want to be more than just an email platform the next standout with MailChimp is that you’re able to create an ad for Facebook Instagram or Google’s network so that you can retarget potential customers across the web and then after that you can also create social posts share and track posts across your social channels those are the biggest differences I see with MailChimp compared to the rest which I’ll be going through in this article now let’s move on to the next email marketing platform which is mailer light mailer lights motto is we believe in a customer friendly approach that removes complexity while still offering advanced features and that’s where the light name comes from because they’re still trying to make it simple but at the same time they also want to provide the solutions and the tools for more advanced email marketers okay so let’s go through the pricing with the free plan you can build a list of up to a thousand subscribers and doubt up to 12,000 emails per month now as usual let’s go through how much it’s going to cost for 10,000 subscribers so $50 per month for up to 10,000 subscribers in my opinion that’s quite competitive that’s very affordable and if you do plan on building a list of up to that much but you don’t want to play up to $200 like some of the other email platforms then mail alight is a good choice for that now in terms of the signup process out of all the platforms that I’m going to in this article mail or light is the most strictest you have to register then enter your profile then you need to actually request for approval you say need to actually wait for someone to manually approve your account I find that mailer lights got just the right amount of features and tools in order to grow as well as your business grows and one of those advanced features is having the ability to use your own IP address so if you do send out lots of emails then this is something you can consider in the future and mail alight officer now let’s run through some of the caveats with mailer light and just like all the other platforms you’re going to have to leave the logo or powered by link you can’t use their auto resend feature this is probably a big one for me since I want to also send it out to those who have not opened my emails or haven’t clicked this is a feature that might be of benefit for you too okay next up do they have a landing page feature so if we go to sites we can go and see under landing pages we can create one from here but with the free plan you can only create up to five landing pages and after that if you do want to create more landing pages you can pay an additional $10 a month on top so that you can create unlimited landing pages so just like all the other email marketing platforms all you need to do is select a template based on the library of templates and then follow these steps ahead in terms of ease of years I find that malar lights quite clean quite well design and intuitive and that is in their brand name light and they don’t want to put unnecessary clutter and distractions when it comes to sending out emails and using their platform of course so if you do want a clean and easy-to-understand interface then mail or lights got that okay next up is mailer light affiliate marketing friendly well we kind of went over this already in the previous platform with MailChimp but highlighting it in the tempt ins terms of services we can see here appropriate content we allow sending only relevant content which is requested by subscribers dah dah dah you can’t send pornography affiliate marketing pyramid schemes MLM so those are the obvious but it is saying it that you can’t send anything that’s a feel it marketing based but scrolling down more there’s actually a whole section just on affiliate marketing and affiliate links and again let’s read this out loud field marketing our feelings are two different things a feeler Marketing is prohibited in mail a light but affiliate links are fine in most cases that’s where the confusion was and that’s why I had to contact them to get this clarified so feel a marketing it’s a type of business where you earn a commission by promoting other companies products so that’s quite straightforward we don’t allow this activity because there’s no direct relationship between you and your subscribers you’re not allowed to send unrelated office to your subscribers or pretend to be another brand with a feeling links it’s allowed so it’s a way to recommend a product or service to your subscribers in your campaigns so investment for another company can only appear under your branding and can be clearly presented as a special offer from another company moreover the offer has to be related to your content and meet subscriber expectations you are not allowed to send emails with links to content that is prohibited in our Terms of Service all Terms of Use so those are the differences according to mail alight and these are the words of mail alight but of course do your own due diligence and to see whether this is right for your business now let’s go through the standouts and what makes a lowlight different to the rest first of all again it’s got just the right amount of features for an email marketing service you don’t have these unnecessary advanced Bheema marketing tools and features that you probably won’t need and in most cases you probably use like 50% well if not 20% on the features of an email marketing service the next data is that their pricing is quite affordable and $50 per month for up to ten thousand subscribers that was one of the pluses for me the next thing is you are given also advanced features like being able to have a dedicated IP to send out your emails from and you also get advanced split testing or testing features such as a/b split testing of landing pages and they also have a thing called click Maps so you can see exactly where subscribers are clicking and which buttons they are actually clicking specifically okay moving on let’s take a look at convertkit convertkit is widely used by creators bloggers and podcasters themselves so it is more targeted towards the individual entrepreneur or author or speaker as opposed to commercial businesses or enterprises so they do have that heavily focused solopreneur sort of target market in terms of it’s free option you are able to use their features and their benefits for unlimited landing pages and you can manage up to 500 subscribers so if you look back at MailChimp they offered 2,000 contacts where convertkit only allows up to 500 subscribers but that itself is still good for a free option anyway now if you do want to consider their plan up to 10,000 subscribers let’s go and it’s going to cost you 119 dollars per month so a little on the pricier end but what I find is that the newer sort of platforms they want to make sure that their customers and their members are satisfied and happy and that they want to get the feedback of their users so that they can improve on their platform and because of that they tend to have more focus within that providing better customer support now in terms of the signup process it is the easiest in my opinion out of the other three all you need to do is just sign up and answer a few basic quiz questions so are you moving from another tool or are you just starting with email so if you say just starting out so is grateful beginners do you have a website let’s say no and then all you need to do is just enter in the email a password agree and then after that you just need to confirm your email address convert kids probably got the least amount of features out of all and of course because it’s one of the newer platforms out there but it kind of works in favor for people who don’t want too much clutter and too many features so it is quite straightforward quite clean that’s what I love about convertkit and I may even consider moving over to convertkit after actually going planning up this article you can see there’s landing pages and forms you can create subscribers tab broadcast automation sequences and you can learn more here but you can see the ones that are grayed out these are the features that are not part of the free option now in terms of the caveats of the free plan of convertkit automations and sequences are disabled so if you do want to create things like if-then rules like if someone clear clicks on a specific link in your email and that triggers some other action then you can’t do those types of things that’s what automations are now with sequences that’s another name for autoresponder sequences if you do plan on creating a set of emails on a predetermined time date then you also can’t do that we can send out broadcast emails and just like all the other platforms you do need to have that powered by link at the bottom of every email you send out and in addition the opt-in forms that convertkit provides now in terms of the ease of years of convertkit it’s very simple very easy clean design which is what I love about it you can see there’s not many things around if we go and click landing pages which is the next feature I will also want to show very easy to understand you’ve got a list of landing pages and forms here create new everything stands out there’s nothing that is not you know that doesn’t need to be there so let’s let mix so the next thing is landing pages so you can create new landing pages here all forms with the free plan you’re not restricted with how many landing pages you can create and which out of their library that you can use so you can choose all of their templates that also provided in their paid plans so let’s say I want this one here the archer template we can choose that or preview it and just like all the other platforms we run through the steps here drag and drop really simple this is my headline alright and just like that it’s all integrated into one system all right next up is convertkit affiliate marketing friendly well in their terms of useful Terms of Service there’s nothing that really points out you know there you can’t do a feel it marketing or you can’t use a feel it links so I think they just base it based on engagement and whether you’re getting too many unsubscribes or a lot of people are complaining about your emails that are sent out so I think they base it on that and it is manually a you know monitored so if you are considering you know Fila marketing do be careful and if you are going to like import leads that obviously aren’t confirms emails or those who didn’t request for your emails then these are the types of things you of course need to be careful of the number one thing that I find is the stat out is less is more they don’t have that many features or unnecessary features that you don’t need and they only have the common tools and the features that most creators need to in order to successfully use email marketing I love the clean design of convertkit and when you do things like creating a new broadcast it takes you or it guides you along the way to creating your broadcast message another set out of convertkit is that it’s actually made by creators for creators so you know you can be rest assured knowing that the direction that they’re taking is towards and making it better and improve for creators like perhaps yourself another feature that I love about convertkit is that you’re able to create form specific opt-in incentives so in their landing pages and forms you create a new form and you can actually create a form specifically for a type of incentive or giveaway so let’s say you have a blog post and you want to give a specific report for that blog post and you can do this using their forms and that will give out only that lead magnet or that freebie for that particular person so there’s a full help file on how to actually do this to use content upgrades is what they call it so step-by-step right there the next tool is called send in blue how I see send in blue is kind of like a hybrid of MailChimp with mail or light it’s got the features of MailChimp and mail alight but at an affordable price semi blue works rather different so I can’t compare ten thousand subscribers to ten thousand subscribers here because you get unlimited contacts however they do a base it on how many emails are sent per day so with the free plan you can only send up to 300 emails per day but if we compare it to one of the pay plans and in order to remove the logo from emails it only comes down to $42 per month anyway compared to 50 dollars per month with mailer light so it is the cheapest out of the others and in terms of the signup process it’s quite straightforward in a way but once you log in that’s where the confusion sort of lies and once you log in you’ll see this in your dashboard so it says complete your profile which is already done then after that it says import import all of your contacts and it’s kind of assuming that you’re switching over to from another system or you’re importing from you know other avenues and what happens if you’re just a beginner you don’t have any leads so I’m not sure if this is going to stay here I’m not sure about that and you know at first glance this makes it not as user friendly in terms of the features it’s quite advanced and I can see that it can be used by more advanced email marketers since there is things like SMS marketing and live chat ability now the caveats with send in blue again you can only send 300 emails per day there’s no ability to do a/b split testing if you want to do that and just like all the others you need to have their powered by link in their emails and also the landing page builder is only available on the premium plan that’s one of the downfalls of using send in blue if you do want to go on there free plan there’s no ability to create landing pages in terms of ease of use and design I’d say that sending blue is quite clunky it’s a little dated and compared to the other email marketing platforms it’s not as easy to understand and it’s not as intuitive I think it’s made more for the tech-savvy person even though they try to minimize all the features and one of the things saying you need to do in order to add extra features is the plus option so let’s say you want something like SMS feature you do need to enable it but because I am on the free plan it’s not going to add it here so if I go back to my home page my dashboard it’s not there so it doesn’t quite understand that I am on the free plan so it should should have said something like you know please upgrade or something to use this feature so that’s what I mean by it’s not as intuitive so let’s say also I want to add something like landing pages even though landing pages is only a feature of a premium plan it shows enabled but if I go to landing pages it just takes me to contexts so that’s what I mean by again not being intuitive in a way not knowing you know not being user-friendly so this is quite a turn-off for me and have nothing against send in blue I just think they like the design and interface could be improved just as smaller details as well in terms of whether sending blue supportive marketing there’s no specific mention in their terms of use so again do your own due diligence now despite all the things I’ve mentioned in terms of the design and ease of use these standouts of sending blue number one you’re only charged based on number of emails per month versus the number of subscribers all right this can be actually an advantage or a disadvantage for a year depending on how you actually use email marketing the second set up is that it’s the cheapest option out of the other platforms that I’ve already gone through and other standouts of sending blue include the ability to do SMS marketing so again if you go back to the features here we can add SMS marketing so if you do once you send out you know automated SMS is to your subscribers then they have that ability and that is what I think stands out amongst all the other email marketing platforms and of course you can also install a live chat so it’s all integrated into this system as opposed to using a third-party software but I must note that some of these features are only available in the premium plan the SMS campaigns here this is a premium option but when I enabled chat it does work if I go into chat even though I’m on the fleet free plan that’s where the confusion lies again so if we go back to the main website here we can see under the premium plan that chat is enabled under the premium plan all right so what’s a verdict and what’s my opinion and my recommendation to you firstly with MailChimp you know that it’s a well-known reputable email marketing service it’s been going on for years and it’s probably got the most features out of all the other platforms it has the most seamless integration with social media since you are able to create targeted ads and social media posts within MailChimp however remember that MailChimp does not allow affiliate marketing so if a feeler Marketing is your sole business then I don’t recommend using MailChimp secondly is mail alight if you want more advanced features but at an affordable cost then mail alight is for you however you need to note again that affiliate marketing is not allowed but affiliate links are thirdly is convertkit if you’re a creator or a solopreneur then convertkit is for you because it’s made by creators for creators and one of the standouts is its intuitive and simple design convertkit is on the pricier and so do you consider that if price is an issue for you and lastly is sending blue the biggest standout is that they base their pricing on the number of emails that you can send so with the free plan you can only send 300 emails per day this might be very limited especially if you have let’s say a list of 2,000 subscribers we can only send 300 emails per day so it doesn’t quite make sense there what like about it is the design that’s something to mention again however the plus-size I’ve said in blue is that you have the ability to do SMS marketing on their premium plan and also integrate a live chat on your website if you do want to consider those features in the future so over to you what email marketing service do you use specifically or do you use any of these four that I mentioned in this article comment below I’d love to know if you have any questions about anything I mentioned in this article feel free to comment and I’d love to answer in the meantime if you found this article helpful hit that like button and subscribe to his channel below make sure to also turn on notifications so you don’t miss out on any future articles just like this thanks for watching and in the meantime take care and be sure to watch these next relevant articles to help continue growing your online business 

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