ConvertKit vs ActiveCampaign: The Email Automation Battle

ConvertKit vs ActiveCampaign

As one of the most profitable marketing methods for online business owners, email marketing is nothing short of a goldmine!


59% of marketers report that email marketing is their biggest source of ROI, so it’s an integral part of any digital marketer’s journey.


Email marketing can bring amazing results, but choosing the right tool can be challenging.


Both ConvertKit and ActiveCampaign have an overall rating of 4.6/5 on Capterra, so it’s time to settle the draw.


That’s why we’ve carefully reviewed both ConvertKit and ActiveCampaign, so you can determine which tool takes the win.


Let’s get started!

1. What is ConvertKit?

ConvertKit’s logo

ConvertKit’s logo

ConvertKit is an email marketing service provider (ESP) designed with content creators in mind.


It promises to provide the best value on the market and skyrocket deliverability rates.


The platform also helps users build landing pages and sell their offers.


With ConvertKit, you can gain email subscribers by creating landing pages or opt-in forms, using their templates or customizing your own.


Let’s take a look at their features.

1.1. ConvertKit’s features

ConvertKit boasts an array of features, and they’re not just limited to email marketing.


The platform also promises to help users avoid ending up in the spam folder of their mailing list, with a 98% delivery rate, as well as a 30% open rate.


We’ll have to see how their features measure up to their promise.


Their features include:

  • Landing page builder — Free website hosting and build your landing page
  • Email automation — Automated email marketing and segmentation for users
  • Email designer and editor — Simple drag-and-drop editor
  • Commerce — Allows creators to sell digital products and services
  • Email sign-up forms — Users can collect email contact information on their website
  • Integrations — ConvertKit integrates with 90 other tools
  • Creator Pro and Advanced features — Get a link to a Sparkloop account, which allows users to reward their subscribers for growing their audience through referrals
  • Free migration — Migrate from another platform to ConvertKit for free with all their plans

ConvertKit offers the following support:

  • How-to guides
  • Technical tutorials
  • Video training
  • Live and on-demand workshops

1.2. ConvertKit’s pricing

ConvertKit’s pricing

ConvertKit’s pricing

ConvertKit offers an appealing set of features, but we have to ask the deciding question — how much will it cost?


Users have the option to choose between the Free plan (no credit card required), the Creator plan, and the Creator Pro plan.


All of their plans are priced for the standard amount of 1,000 subscribers, if you’ve got more contacts, you’d need to pay more.


The Free plan includes:

  • Manage up to 1,000 email subscribers
  • Email support
  • Ecommerce
  • Unlimited templates

The Creator plan is $29/month and offers:

  • Email support
  • Ecommerce
  • Templates
  • Free concierge migration from another platform
  • Automated sales funnels and sequences

The Creator Pro plan comes with a few more bells and whistles at $59/month, and users get access to:

  • Unlimited landing pages and forms
  • Send email broadcasts
  • Sell digital products and subscriptions
  • Email support
  • Free migration from another tool
  • Automated funnels and sequences
  • Facebook custom audiences
  • Newsletter referral system
  • Subscriber scoring
  • Advanced reporting

1.3. Pros and cons

Based on customer reviews, ConvertKit’s features come with some pros and cons:

Pros

  • Tag-based subscriber system
  • Access to email and live chat support
  • The simple automated workflows allow you to set rules to send emails
  • The interface is easy to use and navigate
  • The drag-and-drop sequence builder simplifies personalized automated emails
  • Email deliverability rate is above average

Cons

  • Expensive in comparison to competitors
  • Too simple and unappealing opt-in forms
  • Limited automations: They are basic compared to ActiveCampaign
  • Reporting doesn’t integrate with google analytics, and data is limited
  • Very limited A/B testing functionality
  • Few customization options for forms and email templates

1.4. Recommended if . . .

  • You don’t have much online marketing experience
  • You create, launch, and sell digital products
  • You don’t mind spending more as your subscriber list increases
  • You want a very simple email marketing solution and don’t mind limited customization
  • You use landing page builders and membership platforms that you can integrate with ConvertKit

1.5. Not recommended if . . .

  • You don’t create any form of online content (e.g. blogs, videos, podcasts, etc)
  • You need very advanced email marketing automation and CRM features
  • If you sell physical products, you’d need to integrate with another ecommerce platform
  • You’re looking for a tool that provides a wide range of customizable options
  • You’re looking for a more affordable, all-in-one marketing solution

2. What is ActiveCampaign?

ActiveCampaign’s logo

ActiveCampaign’s logo

ActiveCampaign offers software for customer experience automation, which combines the email marketing, marketing automation, sales automation, and CRM (Customer Relationship Management) categories.

Reviewers have praised ActiveCampaign for its powerful automation features, as well as additional tools such as CRM.

However, if you’re a beginner, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the variety of options and settings.

2.1. ActiveCampaign’s features

In addition to email marketing, ActiveCampaign also offers some other useful features:

  • Marketing automation
  • Landing pages
  • Email segmentation
  • Free email templates
  • CRM and sales automation
  • Drag-and-drop email designer
  • Campaign and list reporting
  • Add live ecommerce data and even videos to your emails
  • Free phone, live chat, and email support
  • Over 850 built-in apps and integrations
  • Track where your contacts live or travel

2.2. ActiveCampaign’s pricing

ActiveCampaign pricing

ActiveCampaign pricing

All of ActiveCampaign’s packages have the option to be billed yearly for a 25% discount.


The platform also offers a 14-day free trial to test out their features.


Depending on how many subscribers you have, the price of the package increases — the pricing below is for 500 contacts.


The Lite plan will cost you $9/month, and it includes the following features:

  • 500 subscribers
  • Marketing automation
  • Unlimited email sending
  • Drag-and-drop editor
  • Subscription forms
  • Import leads
  • Segmentation
  • 125+ email templates

The Plus plan comes at $49/month and offers everything in the Lite plan plus some useful extras:

  • 1,000 subscribers
  • Custom branded forms and landing pages
  • SMS marketing
  • Facebook custom audiences
  • Conditional content
  • CRM with sales automation
  • Lead scoring
  • Mobile CRM app

ActiveCampaign’s most recommended plan is their Professional plan, which offers everything in the Plus plan and some advanced features:

  • Website personalization — Customize the look and design of your website
  • Predictive content — Data-driven content to target customers based on their past interactions
  • Predictive sending — Makes sure your emails are being sent at the optimal time for each recipient
  • Marketing attribution — Insights that let you assign credit for a customer’s buying decision to the correct sources
  • Conversion reporting — Measures the effectiveness of all touchpoints that led up to a customer's conversion
  • Split automations — The split action lets you make an offer until the offer sells out, and then send other contacts down a different automation path (useful for limited offers)
  • Site messaging — Site messages reach your visitors when they're most engaged and target your website visitors with custom messages
  • Win probability — Predict which prospects are more likely to buy into offers using win probability

ActiveCampaign also has an Enterprise plan for $229/month, and it provides users with everything the Professional plan offers, plus the following:

  • Custom reporting
  • Custom mail server domain
  • Custom domain
  • Unlimited email testing
  • Social data enrichment (updates each lead’s contact information)
  • Free design services (create a custom template or email design that incorporates your branding, logos, colors, and content that's unique to your specific needs)
  • Unlimited users

2.3. Pros and cons

As with every platform, ActiveCampaign has some great aspects and some inevitable downfalls:

Pros

  • Impressive deliverability rates
  • A good range of customized features for more advanced users
  • ActiveCampaign has excellent email segmentation
  • Thorough reporting of click-rates, geo-tracking, and page visits
  • The CRM is efficiently integrated with the automations, making organization easy
  • Free migration

Cons

  • There’s no free plan available, only a free trial
  • Overload of features might be too complicated
  • The cost of each plan increases significantly as your contact list increases
  • ActiveCampaign’s reporting has a learning curve
  • The opt-in forms are quite basic
  • The on-site chat feature is an add-on that isn’t included in the Lite plan

2.4. Recommended if . . .

  • You’re looking for a platform with more advanced and customized features
  • You need an email marketing tool that provides an in-depth and customized reporting feature
  • Filtering out traffic with email segmentation is important to you — ActiveCampaign does a great job with this
  • You don’t mind spending more as your contact list increases
  • You want powerful CRM automations

2.5. Not recommended if . . .

  • You don’t want to spend too much as your contact list scales
  • Advanced and customized features aren’t a necessity for your business — ActiveCampaign’s dashboard can be quite overwhelming
  • You want elaborate opt-in forms
  • You prefer starting with a free plan — ActiveCampaign only offers a free 14-day trial
  • You don’t have time to waste on trying to understand all the features and functionality — because there’s a steep learning curve

3. Which tool is the best?

Which tool is the best?

Source: Tenor.com

Now that we’ve taken a good look at both platforms, it’s time to take our pick — it’s a close call, but we have a winner!


Both ConvertKit and ActiveCampaign’s pricing plans are based on contact list count rather than how many emails users send, and ActiveCampaign is slightly more expensive.


With this in mind, we’d have to go with ActiveCampaign over ConvertKit.


ActiveCampaign’s features take a clean sweep when it comes to email marketing automation, customization, and reporting.


If you’re just starting out with email marketing, ActiveCampaign’s features can be a little overwhelming at first.


However, it’s definitely worth taking the time to get accustomed to ActiveCampaign’s features.


Here’s how they stack up against ConvertKit:

  • ActiveCampaign’s many features make it easy to scale your online business — if you’re looking to scale, ConvertKit is simply too limited
  • With ActiveCampaign, there are over 125 well-designed email templates to choose from — ConvertKit only has 3
  • ActiveCampaign’s advanced automation rules and thorough reporting trump those of ConvertKit
  • Customizable opt-in forms with ActiveCampaign makes for a more personal experience
  • ActiveCampaign provides integration with over 250 apps whilst ConvertKit only integrates with 90
  • CRM is offered by ActiveCampaign — with ConvertKit you’d need more integration to successfully carry out your CRM

ConvertKit has a few creative limitations that just don’t warrant their high prices, so it’s worth paying a little more with ActiveCampaign to get the full house.


ActiveCampaign offers a pretty good deal as an email marketing service that will scale with your business.


But, if you’re searching for something that caters to all your marketing needs in one place, we’ve got a great alternative lined up!

4.  Systeme.io as an all-in-one alternative

Systeme.io’s logo

Systeme.io’s logo

If you’re looking for a platform that streamlines your email marketing for a more affordable price than ConvertKit and ActiveCampaign, we’ve got you covered!


Systeme.io is an all-in-one platform for digital marketers that offers powerful email marketing and automation — with a whole lot more to offer!

4.1. Systeme.io’s features

All of systeme.io’s features cater to beginners and more experienced entrepreneurs.


Our features include:

  • Email marketing — Set up email campaigns, and send unlimited emails
  • Sales funnels — Create funnels easily based on proven templates
  • Online courses — Build your course site, and manage your students
  • Website builder — Easily set up your website in under 10 minutes using our proven templates and drag-and-drop interface
  • Affiliate program — Create an affiliate program, and automate your affiliate payouts
  • Marketing automation — Save time and energy by automating your marketing
  • Evergreen webinars — Run pre-recorded, automated webinars to grow your audience and make more sales

4.2. Systeme.io’s pricing

Systeme.io’s pricing

Systeme.io’s pricing

When it comes to pricing, it’s difficult to beat systeme.io’s incredible value for money!


Choose between our different price plans to cater to your specific needs:

  • Free plan at $0/month
  • Startup plan at $27/month
  • Webinar plan at $47/month
  • Enterprise plan at $97/month

All of our plans include the features listed above, as well as:

  • Unlimited emails
  • Unlimited blog posts
  • Unlimited file storage space
  • Unlimited membership site members
  • Access to run your own affiliate program
  • Payment integrations with PayPal and Stripe
  • 24/7 email support with a response time of under 2 hours

Email marketing is a breeze with systeme.io, and automated marketing has never been simpler.

5. Conclusion

Email marketing is the life force of any business, and having the right tool places you steps ahead of competitors.


After delving into what ConvertKit and ActiveCampaign have to offer, making the best decision to suit your business needs should be a whole lot easier.


Based on the features we’ve explored, ActiveCampaign seems to have the upper hand over ConvertKit.


But if you’re not entirely convinced, systeme.io’s all-in-one tool optimizes your email marketing and much more!


With systeme.io, you’ll be able to send unlimited emails, automate your email sequences, and integrate your contact list into your sales funnel in minutes.


Sign up for our freemium plan today, it’s free forever!

Other posts about email marketing tools:

●   Moosend

●   ConvertKit vs Mailchimp

●   GetResponse

●   Upviral 

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