It’s the 21st Century, Social media, Content Marketing, and mobile are taking the world by storm. However, none of those have been able to beat the sound, not-that-old, e-mail Marketing.
Yes, it’s true, Social Media advertising is growing and has become essential for the growth of any business, but e-mail marketing still sits on the throne as the single most effective marketing tactic to connect businesses with their customers.
The World of e-mail marketing is ruled by two competing leaders, MailChimp, and Constant Contact. These two solutions have proven to be the best at their field, and this has made it quite difficult for businesses to choose from.
In this article, we are going to try and put MailChimp Vs. Constant Contact head-to-head comparison to help you choose which option is the best for you.
You should consider these factors for MailChimp Vs. Constant Contact:
MailChimp is friendlier to work with than other companies. Their content is more colorful, and playful as they offer unique content such as creative guides and coloring books. They have a sense of humor that is not seen as often nowadays and that serves to remind all businesses that marketing should be a fun experience for the end user.
While MailChimp can be described as friendly and fun, Constant Contact is often described as helpful and reputable. They also invest more heavily in mass media advertising campaigns (TV, Radio, etc.) and that has helped them build greater brand recognition among small businesses.
2- Features and Functionality
You can find most of the basic features you can expect in an Email Marketing Service. Both are also so feature-rich that it’s hard to see a feature, not in at least one of them in some shape or form. However, some differences do exist, so let’s take a look at them:
Both MailChimp and Constant Contact offer great options that can give you create beautiful and attractive -emails.
With its ready-to-use templates, customizability options, and drag and drop editor, Constant contact tends to be easier to use. Constant Contact also gives you access to free stock images to use. Unfortunately, you can only upload five images for free, after which you will need to upgrade to MyLibrary Plus.
With MailChimp, you can upload images with no limit which will all be stored in your account for later use in other campaigns. You can upload the images from a URL, Flickr, or Giphy.
Winner: If you’re on a budget: MailChimp. If you want customization: Constant Contact.
- Importing Contacts
Both Constant Contact and MailChimp can import your contacts into their platforms quite easily.
You can import a CSV file, import them from services such as Google Contacts, or copy/paste from files.
You can upload contacts by adding them one by one, pasting them, adding multiple contacts at once, or uploading them. It’s worth noting that when uploading contacts files to Constant Contact, you will find it accepts more formats than
Winner: Close, but Constant Contact takes this one.
- List Management and Segmentation:
Constant Contact: You can have multiple lists much more easily than you can with MailChimp, and you can also add tags to your subscribers, a function that is nowhere to be found on MailChimp.
MailChimp: You can create groups and segments. Segments are generated based on shared list data about your subscribers.
Winner: Constant Contact – It’s just easier to manage your lists.
With Constant Contact, you will be able to track things such as opens, clicks, and revenue from your campaigns. There’s also a feature that helps you compare open rates between desktop and mobile.
What MailChimp offers in the analytics department cannot be challenged. MailChimp’s advantage in the analytics department comes from its superior detailed and easier-to-understand reports that give your insights no other service can provide you.
You will be able to track opens and clicks on your emails and then compare your results to the industry averages to know how well you’re doing.
For every campaign, you can track how many emails were delivered, how many people opened them, what is the percentage of those who clicked, and how much revenue have you generated from the e-mails.
You will also be able to see top locations by opens to see if you’re reaching your target audience.
With the click map tool, you will be able to see the most-clicked links on your e-mails.
Winner: MailChimp is the clear winner here.
- E-mail Previews
Both Constant Contact and MailChimp offer you the option of previewing your emails for desktop and mobile before sending them.
However, MailChimp has the edge here as it also offers you a feature to show you exactly how the email is going to be displayed in specific email clients. This means you will be able to see how your email is going to look in Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo, etc.
- A/B Testing
This is a functionality that doesn’t exist in Constant Contact, so there’s not even a comparison here.
This makes the task of testing subject lines, email copies, images, and even moving an extensive list of subscribers in new listings is very time-consuming because it must be done manually.
MailChimp offers full A/B testing functionality. This helps you split-test different elements of your campaigns super easy because you don’t need to do it manually as is the case with Constant Contact.
Clear Winner: Mail Chimp.
When it comes to Automation, Constant’s capabilities are a bit limited. It still allows you to create autoresponders which will be sent once someone joins your list, but that’s pretty much all of it.
MailChimp offers a lot more when it comes to automation. You can integrate MailChimp with your website to send emails to your users based on their activity on the site.
With goal integration, you will be able to e-mail customers specific instructions and product recommendations based on their earlier purchases.
You will also be able to reward your top shoppers with discount codes.
Those lovely, advanced features, however, do not come standard. The automation feature is not included in their free plan, so if you want to use it, you will need to upgrade to a paid account to use it.
Winner: MailChimp, If you’re willing to pay.
Let me put it like this: Even if you’ve never used MailChimp before, you will be able to start using it right away. This is how intuitive the tool is to understand and use.
Constant Contact’s User interface is not flawed it is a pretty good interface. However, put it side by side with MailChimp’s user interface, and you will see that it lacks in some aspects and that it is slightly less intuitive and more difficult to use.
If you’re looking for the highest deliverability rates in the industry, you can’t go wrong with either.
MailChimp: 96-99% Deliverability Rate.
MailChimp is strict about CAN-SPAM, stricter than Constant Contact, but it does allow you to re-upload un-subscribers to your lists. Users have reported that they found their bounce rate and un-subscribers rate to be lower when using MailChimp than when using Constant Contact
Constant Contact: 97% Deliverability Rate
Many users have reported that they saw greater email deliverability with Constant Contact than they have seen using MailChimp or any other Email marketing service.
However, a 2012 comparison by LightSpeed claimed that Constant Contact is blacklisted from sending emails to all military addresses, so you might want to keep that in mind if military contacts are among your contacts database.
Other than this issue, users report that Constant Contact’s emails don’t get spam-flagged as often as it happens when using MailChimp.
Winner: Constant Contact.
MailChimp offers integrations with Facebook, Twitter, Wordpress, Google Analytics, Slack, ZenDesk, Shopify, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, SquareSpace, Stripe, Mandrill, Eventbrite, Unbounce, Drupal, and Prestashop.
Constant Contact offers integrations with Facebook, Outlook, Salesforce, Hootsuite, Wix, Wordpress, Shopify, Quickbooks, MINDBODY, ACT!, and Mailmunch.
Although both have many integrations with third-party apps and systems, MailChimp takes this once because Constant Contact’s built-in platform doesn’t have quite the variety of combinations which MailChimp offers.
5- Customer Support
This is probably the one area that MailChimp does quite severely in it.
Customer Support, or rather, the lack of one, is the number one complaint about MailChimp’s users and the one thing that can indeed be a deal breaker.
MailChimp doesn’t offer Phone Support, they only offer e-mail support, which, to be honest, is also terrible.
They count on their self-help topics, which is not a bad idea when you take into account that the self-help topics are indeed quite useful. However, there is no substitute for talking with someone on the phone; there isn’t.
Could you live with it? You can if you’re determined. As mentioned, the self-help topics are indeed quite helpful, and the fact that the software itself is user-friendly and intuitive means that some never get the need to have someone on the other end of a phone call telling them what to do.
Constant Contact Support
Where MailChimp falls on its face, Constant Contact takes the crown with their dedicated customer service department. They offer support via phones, live chat, and email.
They are very responsive, helpful, and experienced.
If you expect to face any problems that may require immediate help, Constant Contact is entirely the way to go.
Winner: Constant Contact is the clear winner here.
MailChimp offers three main plans:
- The Free Plan – New Business
This is their free plan for small businesses and start-ups. It’s free up to 2,000 subscribers, and 12,000 email sends per month.
You get Free reports, E-mail Templates, and Signup Forms.
However, you don’t get support.
- Paid – Growing Business:
Starting at $10 monthly, you can have more than 2,000 subscribers. You also get a database connection, engagement reports, collaboration tools, advanced segmentation, and delivery tools.
- Paid – Pro Marketer
This is a package for pros only. It starts at a hefty $199 a month for everything mentioned in the above plans plus high-volume sending, API access, comparative reports, advanced testing, and the most powerful automation tools and transactional emails.
It’s also worth noting that MailChimp offers a “pay as you go” option that allows you to purchase email credits for as low as $0.005-$00.03 per email. This is helpful for those that need to scale up or down depending on fluctuating database sizes, seasonality, slow periods, or other reasons.
Also worth noting is that MailChimp offers a 15% discount on their paid accounts for all non-profit organizations.
Overall, MailChimp tends to be less expensive than Constant Contact.
Constant Contact Pricing
Constant Contact offers two plans:
Starts at $20 a month and offers up to 500 subscribers, but you can go up to 10,000 subscribers for $95.
You also get unlimited e-mails, contact management, 1 GB of storage, their Mobile Application, reporting features, and lots of community resources.
- Email Plus
Starting at $45 a month gets you up to 500 subscribers, but you can get 10,000 subscribers for $125 a month.
This plan adds automation, online donations, coupons, event marketing, and surveys and polls to what is included in the previous plan.
60-day free trial: It’s important to mention that Constant Contact offers a 60 days free trial period, after which you must upgrade to one of the plans mentioned above.
Also worth noting is that if you prepay for six months in advance, you get 10% off your constant account, which goes up to 15% if you prepay for a year in advance.
For Non-profits, Constant Contact offers double the incentive to prepay. This means that Non-profit organizations get a 20% discount if they prepay for 6 months in advance and a 30% discount if they prepay for a year in advance.
Thanks to their lower cost and “Forever Free” model, MailChimp is the clear winner in the pricing competition. Not only is it more affordable, but it is more flexible in its pricing and hence, can suit more businesses.
If we turn a blind eye to MailChimp’s customer support, we can say it seems to be the best all around. But we can’t say that, because different businesses have different needs, and Constant Contact does have a few unique advantages that attract businesses, such as their high deliverability rates and their awesome drag-and-drop editor that makes customizing e-mails a breeze.
In the end, it’s up to you to choose which is the best option for you, but it’s good to know you can’t go wrong with either.