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In this Getresponse vs Mailchimp comparison, I’m going to examine both these popular email marketing solutions in depth, to see which of them best meets your business’ needs.
I’m going to look at…
- pricing and value for money
- quality of templates
- key features
- the main pros and cons of both products
By the end of the comparison, you’ll have a much clearer idea of which product is for you.
But let’s start with a basic question: what do Getresponse and Mailchimp actually do?
Getresponse and Mailchimp — what do they do?
Getresponse and Mailchimp are email marketing tools that allow you to:
create (or import) a mailing list and capture email addresses onto it
design HTML e-newsletters (emails containing graphics, photos and brand elements) that can be sent to your subscribers
automate your emails to subscribers via ‘autoresponders’
monitor statistics related to your email marketing — open rates, click-throughs, forwards and more.
Over the past couple of years, Getresponse has evolved into more of an ‘all-in-one’ marketing solution, and accordingly now has some features which are not to be found in Mailchimp, namely:
built-in e-commerce features
- chat functionality
- push notifications
Mailchimp increasingly also aims to be an all-in-one ‘marketing platform’ that offers e-commerce and website building functionality, and has changed its pricing model accordingly.
I’ll discuss both products’ new ‘all-in-one’ approach in more depth later in the comparison.
Before that however, let’s look at something that’s really integral to both Mailchimp and Getresponse, and a feature that historically they’ve been best-known for: autoresponders.
Autoresponders are e-newsletters that are sent to your subscribers at pre-defined intervals – for example, you can set them up so that:
immediately after somebody signs up to your mailing list, they receive a simple welcome message from your business
a week later they receive a discount code for some of your products
three weeks later they receive an encouragement to follow you on Twitter and Facebook…
And so on.
The idea is that a huge chunk of your email marketing gets automated – so that once you’ve set things up correctly, subscribers will automatically receive key messages from your business without you having to bother sending out e-newsletters manually (although you can still of course do this as and when required).
The above example of an autoresponder cycle is typically called a ‘drip’ campaign, where e-newsletters are triggered by time intervals.
However, autoresponders are increasingly being used in more sophisticated ways by businesses, with messages being triggered by opens, clicks, purchases, web page visits, abandoned orders and more.
And when set up correctly, they save a huge amount of time and have the potential to generate significant income.
So what’s the autoresponder functionality in Getresponse and Mailchimp like?
Let’s take a look at that.
Autoresponders in Getresponse vs Mailchimp
Getresponse and Mailchimp both provide extensive autoresponder functionality — some of the best in the business.
Both products offer a similar set of autoresponder triggers to choose from — subscription to a list, opens, clicks, purchase mades, URLs visited and user data changes all can be used to kickstart an autoresponder cycle.
For example, with both tools, you can trigger autoresponders by:
e-newsletter action — for example, when somebody opens or clicks a link on an email you send, they can be automatically added to a particular set of autoresponders
purchases — if somebody buys a product from your website, you can use this information to trigger an email broadcast in Getresponse or Mailchimp
page visits – if a subscriber visits a particular page on your site, you can send them an email a few seconds later
data changes — i.e., when somebody changes their details on your list
date and time — for example, you can send automatically send messages x minutes or days after sign up, or on birthdays.
In short, both products are really strong when it comes to autoresponder functionality — the range of triggers available to you is very extensive.
For a while now, Getresponse has been letting you manage email automation via a ‘flowchart’-style journey creator — it’s very sophisticated stuff, which you can get a sense of from the screenshot below — and it’s not too hard to set up.
You basically map out a set of rules for Getresponse to follow — these are based on user action. So, for example, if a user clicks a link on a particular email, they are taken down one path; if they don’t, they go down another.
Not to be outdone, Mailchimp recently added a similar ‘journey builder’ tool that also lets you create similar subscriber journeys.
This is broadly comparable in terms of features with the Getresponse automation builder — but I’d argue that Getresponse’s feature offers slightly more in the functionality department.
This is because unlike Mailchimp’s, you can use it to create ‘loops’ — so if a subscriber gets to a particular point in the journey without taking an action, you can send them back to the beginning of the journey — or somewhere else on it.
You can also use Getresponse’s journey builder to trigger ‘push notifications’ — where users see a message from you in their browser after taking a particular action.
The Mailchimp journey builder interface is ‘cleaner’ than the Getresponse one, however — and a bit easier to use.
Overall, both tools offer really strong autoresponder functionality; Mailchimp wins on usability, but the winner when it comes to features is Getresponse.
There are 4 plans available for Mailchimp. In order of expense, these are:
Free — a cut-down version of the product featuring an advert for Mailchimp at the bottom of e-newsletters
Essential — starting at $9.99 per month to send emails to a list up to 500 subscribers in size
Standard — starting at $14.99 per month for a list up to 500 subscribers in size
Premium — starting at $299 per month for a list up to 10,000 subscribers in size.
With Getresponse, there are also 4 plans available — again, in order of expense, these are:
Basic — starting at $15 per month to send an unlimited number of emails to up to 1,000 subscribers
Plus — starting at $49 per month for up to 1,000 subscribers
Professional — starting at $99 per month for up to 1,000 subscribers
Max — custom pricing.
A free trial, lasting 30 days, is also available — you can access it via this link.
Each plan boasts different features, and rises in price with the size of your list. I’ll discuss these features shortly — but before that, it’s worth zooming in quickly on a few key limits you need to be aware of.
In May 2019, Mailchimp introduced (controversial!) monthly limits on the number of e-newsletters you can send to your lists.
These vary according to the number of subscribers you have on your list, but for the plans and subscriber counts listed above, the limits are 10k, 500k, 1.2 million and 3 million respectively.
Now, many users will never breach these limits, but if you use autoresponders extensively or send a lot of e-newsletters, it’s conceivable that you could, particularly if you’re on one of the cheaper plans.
So, it’s an instant win for Getresponse here, because all its plans allow you to send an unlimited number of emails per month — even the entry-level one. This represents much better value for money.
In Mailchimp, the number of lists you can create depends on the type of plan you’re on (1 on ‘Free’; 3 on ‘Essentials’; 5 on ‘Standard’ and unlimited on ‘Premium’).
There’s no equivalent limits in Getresponse — this makes it a more suitable tool for any business that needs to host multiple lists for different revenue streams, clients, or sub-brands.
A key issue to watch out for: defining list size
When it comes to list sizes, you have to watch out for something rather sneaky in Mailchimp: the company charges you for both subscribed AND unsubscribed contacts on your lists (or ‘audiences’ to use Mailchimp’s new terminology).
Getresponse, by contrast, only charges you for active contacts.
So, for example, if you had 1,000 subscribers on a list, 200 of whom unsubscribed, Getresponse would consider this to be a list containing 800 people.
By contrast, Mailchimp would consider it to be a list containing 1,000 subscribers — and charge you accordingly.
This is pretty ridiculous in my view and, as with Mailchimp’s send limit issue, presents one of the more compelling arguments for choosing Getresponse over Mailchimp.
Users / seats
Mailchimp is slightly more generous than Getresponse when it comes to the number of users (or ‘seats’) that you can associate with an account.
Its entry-level ‘Essentials’ plan gives you 3 seats; its ‘Standard’ plan gives you 5; and its ‘Premium’ plan gives you an unlimited number.
This contrasts positively with the Getresponse limits — 1 on the ‘Basic’ plan, 3 on ‘Plus’, 5 on the Professional, and 10 by default on ‘Max’ (that said, the number of accounts on ‘Max’ is negotiable).
Free plans and trials
A very welcome feature of Mailchimp is its free plan – you can use it to send up to 10,000 emails to up to 2,000 contacts per month.
This is generous and extremely useful for users who wish to send occasional emails to a small list.
However, emails sent using this plan display Mailchimp advertising on them, which, whilst reasonably subtle, makes them look slightly less professional in appearance.
And, as you might expect, the Mailchimp free plan does not provide all the functionality that you can expect on a paid one. For example, you won’t be able to use any of the designer templates, access support or build autoresponder journeys.
That said, the free plan remains pretty generous for what it is — a way to build an audience and send basic newsletters for free.
Getresponse doesn’t provide a free plan, but as mentioned above, it offers a free trial — it’s limited to 30 days, but you can try out all of the Getresponse features using it (for lists that are 1,000 subscribers or less in size).
Key differences between the plans
The key differences between Mailchimp plans to watch out for are the ability to code your own templates and access to all the key features of the new journey builder (notably branching points, pictured below) — these are only available on the more expensive ‘Standard’ plan or higher.
And, if comparative reporting and multivariate testing are important to you, you should note that these features are only available on the expensive $299 ‘Premium’ Mailchimp plan.
The key differences between the Getresponse tiers involve access to webinar functionality and the marketing automation builder — arguably the two standout features of the platform.
You only get access to these on the ‘Plus’ plan or higher. And the limits that apply to how many participants can attend a webinar, or how many automation ‘workflows’ you can create vary by plan (the more you pay, the more you get, basically!).
Zooming in: the Getresponse “Basic” plan vs Mailchimp “Essential” plan
I suspect many readers of this comparison will be interested in comparing the Mailchimp “Essentials” plan against the Getresponse “Basic” plan. These are the cheapest paid-for offerings from the two companies.
You’ll find that depending on your list size, sometimes Getresponse works out cheaper, sometimes Mailchimp does.
For example, hosting 25k records on Getresponse ‘Basic’ costs $145 per month; on Mailchimp ‘Essentials’ it’s $200.
But hosting a 30k list on Mailchimp Essentials is cheaper — it’s $230 to Getresponse’s $250.
Additionally, if your list is less than 500 records in size, Mailchimp will let you get into email marketing cheaper — the ‘Essentials’ plan lets you work with a list of up to 500 subscribers for $9.99 per month.
However, Mailchimp’s sneaky approach to calculating list size — by including unsubscribed contacts on it — means that we are to a degree comparing apples to oranges here…as your list grows, and people unsubscribe from it, your costs can grow considerably with Mailchimp.
Furthermore, if you are prepared to pay upfront for your Getresponse account, there are some sizeable discounts available which make Getresponse a substantially cheaper option for you. Paying upfront for a year entitles you to an 18% discount; paying upfront for two years results in a 30% discount.
No comparable discounts are available for Mailchimp.
Additionally, there are a few useful features that are available on the Getresponse ‘Basic’ plan that you won’t find on the Mailchimp ‘Essentials’ plan:
the option to code your own templates
comparative reporting (where you can compare the results of one campaign against another)
send time optimization (where your email marketing solution automatically figures out when the best time to send emails to individual subscribers is).
However, Mailchimp’s entry level plan currently does have one edge over Getresponse’s: its recently introduced ‘stores’ feature. This allows you to build a simple online store (US and UK only).
Apparently similar functionality is on the way soon from Getresponse — when e-commerce features are added to its new website builder feature, but for now, Mailchimp is ahead in this area.
Overall though, in terms of ‘bang for the buck’, you probably get a bit more of it with Getresponse.
Pricing, of course, is not the only factor you should be basing a Mailchimp vs Getresponse decision on.
Let’s take a look at quality of features.
Both Getresponse and Mailchimp offer a good range of email templates that you can use as a starting point when designing your e-newsletters.
In terms of quantity, Getresponse offers a few more: there are around 115 Getresponse templates to Mailchimp’s 100 or so.
As for quality, I slightly prefer the Getresponse templates — they are more contemporary in nature.
It’s important to note that with both products, you don’t need to use one of the supplied templates — you can use your own HTML code in both Getresponse and Mailchimp to design your own (note however that you will have to be on a more expensive ‘Standard’ plan if you intend to do this in Mailchimp).
You can also buy additional templates for both platforms from a third-party supplier like Theme Forest.
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The user interfaces offered by Getresponse and Mailchimp are quite different – Mailchimp opts for a very minimalistic sort of approach, with lots of big fonts (on big spaces) being employed to present menus, stats and data. And icons, rather than text, are used in menus.
It’s quite distinctive and some users will probably appreciate the ‘big and bold’ approach.
Getresponse, by contrast, provides a user interface that is based more around traditional drop-down menus.
Neither system is particularly hard to use — personally I marginally prefer the Getresponse interface because you don’t seem to have to scroll or click quite so much to get at particular features or data.
In Mailchimp, all the big fonts employed mean a lot of stuff is ‘below the fold’, particularly on laptops – it makes for a clean interface but one where screen ‘real estate’ is not always efficiently used.
That said, I have found Mailchimp’s interface to be more robust — I’ve occasionally come across the odd glitch on Getresponse; nothing serious, but Mailchimp’s back end seems just a little bit more reliable and less buggy.
Both back ends are in general fine though really – it’s mainly a case of personal taste here.
Editing email designs
Both Getresponse and Mailchimp allow you to edit your templates using ‘drag-and-drop’ style editors.
These editors are fairly similar in concept, in that they allow you to lay images and text out in a manner that suits you without resorting to any HTML coding.
However, I’d argue that as things stand, Mailchimp’s email editor a bit better than the Getresponse one.
It’s just a little bit more ‘solid,’ and it also lets you set global styles for your templates — you can define what H1s, H2s, body copy should look like in a message style tab.
With Getresponse, you have to edit these on the fly, which means a bit more manual formatting.
Both Mailchimp and Getresponse let you make use of web fonts in your e-newsletters.
However, the selection of web fonts provided in Mailchimp is extremely limited — only a very small number of Google Fonts can be used, and really boring ones at that (they look so similar to web safe fonts that you might as well use the web safe ones!).
With Getresponse, the options are much more extensive — you can use tons of Google fonts in your emails.
Given that Google fonts are widely used in web design, this will help a lot of users keep a greater degree of brand consistency between their sites and their email newsletters.
So when it comes to web fonts, it’s currently a win for Getresponse.
Mobile-friendly emails with Getresponse and Mailchimp
Both Getresponse and Mailchimp let you create mobile-friendly versions of your e-newsletters, and preview the mobile version as you do so.
Responsive design is used by both products to do this, which follows best practice and ensures that your messages will look great on any device. A thumbs up to both products here.
An important feature of email marketing solutions is split testing. This allows you to try out a variety of subject headers and/or content on some sample data (for example, 5% of your list) before automatically sending the best-performing version to the remainder of your list.
If you are using relatively small lists, this feature is not vital, because for statistical reasons split testing is only worth doing on relatively large lists — but anybody intending to do big mailouts will find that split testing functionality can improve open rates significantly.
Getresponse lets you use either subject headers or newsletter content in split tests.
Mailchimp lets you use newsletter content variants, subject headers, different sender names and send times in its split tests — so long as you are on a paid-for plan.
On its ‘Essentials’ and ‘Standard’ plans, Mailchimp allows you to split-test 3 different versions of your email; Getresponse’s limit on all plans is 5.
It’s important to note that with both products, you can only use one variable at a time during a split test — for example, you can test two emails with different subject headers against each other, but both versions of the email must have the same content.
If this sort of split testing doesn’t meet your requirements, then you might consider Mailchimp’s ‘Premium’ plan, which lets you test 8 variants of your e-newsletters against each other — and mix and match variables. However, the costs for this are significant — a minimum of $299 per month.
Because of the more generous limit on variants that can be used in split tests, it’s a win here for Getresponse.
Creating data segments in Getresponse and Mailchimp
Getresponse and Mailchimp both allow you to create data segments easily enough — you can use a variety of filters to identify subscribers based on particular criteria and save them.
However, Getresponse beats Mailchimp hands down when it comes to sending e-newsletters to your segments.
This is because the basic version of Mailchimp only allows you to send e-newsletters to one segment at a time, whereas Getresponse lets you send them to as many as you like.
For example, if you had a mailing list about guitars with three pre-existing segments in it, ‘red guitar owners’, ‘blue guitar owners’ and ‘green guitar owners’, and you wanted to send an e-newsletter to the red guitar AND blue guitar owners in one go, you could do this in Getresponse really easily — you’d just tick the relevant red and green segments and hit send.
By contrast, in Mailchimp, to achieve the same thing you’d have to create a brand new segment containing red guitar owners OR blue owners.
More work, and more segments cluttering up the place!
Similarly, Mailchimp only allows you to send e-newsletters to one list at a time. Although it IS usually best practice to consolidate your data into one list and populate fields to flag data types, there are nonetheless occasions where you may end up working with subscribers which are stored in multiple lists.
In Getresponse, this isn’t a problem — you can send e-newsletters to multiple lists at once.
And finally, excluding segments is much easier in Getresponse — once you’ve picked your list of recipients, you can simply tick the segments or lists that you want to exclude from the mailout.
If you want more advanced segmentation options, you can get these in Mailchimp but you’ll need to be on an expensive ‘Premium’ plan.
Getresponse’s more flexible approach to both segmentation and list management is, in my view, one of the strongest reasons for using it over Mailchimp — possibly the strongest.
If segmentation is important to your business, the obvious choice here is Getresponse.
Reporting on both Mailchimp and Getresponse is very comprehensive: you can track all the usual things like open rates, clickthroughs and unsubscribes, but you can also drill down into the data much further.
For example, you can look up somebody on your mailing list and get an overview of what lists they are on; their location; IP address; and what emails they’ve previously opened.
This is all very useful data for understanding your audience and informing your future marketing strategy — if rather Orwellian!
One reporting feature in Mailchimp that I really like is its ‘engagement stats’ panel. As the name suggests, this shows you the percentages of your subscribers who engage often, occasionally or rarely with your e-newsletters.
Furthermore, it allows you to email them really easily — you just click a little paper plane icon and you can send them a message immediately.
You can identify and mail your most engaged subscribers in Getresponse too; however, it’s a slightly more manual process involving creating a segment of people with a high engagement score.
Getresponse’s reporting system has an excellent feature which is not present in Mailchimp however: its automatic creation of emailable ‘groups’ — based on more precise user action — after a mailout is sent.
After an email broadcast, Getresponse will show you several segments of contacts who took specific actions — you’ll see groups of people who opened your email, did not open your email, clicked your email but did not meet a goal etc. — and you can mail them all again really easily. This is extremely useful for sending quick reminders or follow-up offers to relevant contacts.
Mailchimp does let you see this information too — but in order to create segments from it you’d need to export and reimport the data, using new ‘flag’ fields to manually create your segments.
This is unnecessarily fiddly — and, as discussed earlier, you’ll quite possibly run into some headaches with emailing these segments, because Mailchimp is so restrictive in this area.
All in all though, the reporting functionality in both Mailchimp and Getresponse is very comprehensive — either tool will let you get a very complete overview of how your e-newsletters are performing.
Both Getresponse and Mailchimp integrate with a wide range of other services – you will need to check their websites for an exhaustive list, but services like Paypal, BigCommerce, Facebook and Magento are examples of the kind of services catered for.
I have found that, in general, Mailchimp tends to be more of a ‘default’ option than Getresponse for many services (Squarespace and Facebook being prime examples), and Getresponse seems to rely quite a lot on a third party tool, Zapier, for quite a lot of its integrations (which makes them a bit longer to set up and involves more configuration).
That said a lot of the ‘big’ services are catered for perfectly well with Getresponse; if you like the tool and want to integrate it with an established service like Paypal or Facebook, you won’t have any difficulty doing so.
Additionally, an ‘integration’ often means simply adding a sign-up form to a website, and both Getresponse and Mailchimp make it straightforward enough to do that (see below for more information on sign up forms).
(Interestingly however, there is no longer an official Mailchimp integration for e-commerce giant Shopify, because of a dispute over data protection and privacy issues. But there are workarounds available.)
Facebook ads in Mailchimp and Getresponse
Both Mailchimp and Getresponse differentiate themselves from many of their competitors by allowing you to manage Facebook ad campaigns directly from their platforms.
So, if you’re somebody who likes to work on all aspects of a marketing campaign in one place, you may find this functionality handy.
You can set up basic ad campaigns using the standard set of Facebook demographics (i.e., create simple ads that target users who are aged X and interested in activity Y).
More useful perhaps is the option to connect your Mailchimp or Getresponse account to Facebook, which will then — in its trademark big-brother way — examine the email addresses on your list and show ads to anybody on your database with a Facebook account (this is called a ‘custom audience’).
When you’ve connected your accounts, your lists can also be synced with your Facebook account, meaning that Facebook will automatically start showing the ads to any new subscribers (i.e., in addition to the people who were on your list when you connected your accounts).
Be careful though — GDPR rules mean that using custom audiences — which effectively means sharing user data with Facebook — can be risky from a legal point of view (at least where EU users are concerned).
So do your due diligence first before using these features!
Adding a sign-up form to your website
Both Getresponse and Mailchimp allow you to design sign-up forms and grab a snippet of code which you can add to embed a form on your website.
With Getresponse, the design options are a bit more extensive — you can make use of a wider range of typefaces on your form and you can choose from a range of pre-designed form templates (some good, some cheesy).
Neither platform is great when it comes to giving you fine grain control over your forms, however — you can’t specify for example whether or not a pop-up form should appear on mobile devices (some site owners prefer not to use pop up forms on mobile devices, as doing so can have a negative impact on a site’s performance in search results).
Mailchimp also provides some iPad / Android forms that you can use for capturing data via tablets at events — something which used to be available with Getresponse but unfortunately seems to have been discontinued.
That said, you could always use a Getresponse landing page in a browser on an iPad for this purpose — and speaking of which…
Landing page creation
A landing page creator allows you to make use of various templates and a drag and drop editor to create a landing or ‘squeeze’ page which improves the sign-up rate to your list.
These are distraction-free sign-up pages that are designed to improve sign-up rates. A/B testing is often used to test different versions of landing pages against each other, in order to identify the best-performing ones and use these to maximise the number of sign-ups.
Landing pages in Mailchimp
Up until relatively recently, landing pages were not included with Mailchimp plans.
The good news for Mailchimp users is that landing page-building functionality is now provided on all Mailchimp plans.
However, as things stand, this functionality is a bit limited: no A/B testing is included, and only a few templates are available.
Landing pages in Getresponse
In Getresponse you get comprehensive landing page functionality: hundreds of responsive templates, A/B split testing, countdown timers and free stock photography are all included with this feature.
The landing page designer could be better from a usability point of view — it’s a bit clunky and fiddly to use — but it is ultimately a powerful tool that allows you to do considerably more with landing pages than Mailchimp.
Landing pages and GDPR
Both Mailchimp and Getresponse allow you to add Facebook pixel and Google Analytics cookies to their landing pages.
Although this functionality is undeniably useful for measuring the success of advertising campaigns, neither product lets your landing page visitors opt out of these cookies being run.
This is not ideal from a GDPR point of view — and both companies need to address this urgently so that their users don’t fall foul of the law.
Both Mailchimp and Getresponse facilitate two-factor authentication.
Two-factor authentication requires you to not only enter a password at login, but also to verify your identity as an account owner by entering in a second piece of information — for example, a code sent by SMS to your phone.
Given the emphasis placed by GDPR on the importance of data security, it’s good that both products cater for this.
The biggest differences between Getresponse and Mailchimp: webinars, conversion funnels, chats and push notifications
So far, I’ve compared features that are common to both Getresponse and Mailchimp. However, there are 4 tools in Getresponse which you won’t find an equivalent for in Mailchimp.
- conversion funnels
- live chat
- push notifications.
Let’s take a quick look at them.
With Getresponse ‘Plus’ plans and up, you get something that is not included in Mailchimp’s feature set at all: the ability to host webinars.
Webinars are commonly used as a way to generate business leads, with businesses offering access to webinar content in exchange for an email address.
Now normally, this involves using two apps — one for hosting the webinars, and one for managing your email marketing.
But Getresponse has been very clever here by offering a webinar feature as part of its email marketing offering. And it’s an extremely good feature, comparing positively with dedicated webinar products that cost significantly more than Getresponse.
A few Getresponse webinar features worth flagging up as being particularly useful are:
the fact that your attendees don’t need to install any software to attend the webinars
the ability to record your webinars and share them with participants later
video sharing functionality (YouTube)
the option to upload Powerpoint presentations to Getresponse for use during a webinar
free online storage for playback files.
One thing to watch out for is the attendee cap: Getresponse limits this to 100 people on its ‘Plus’ plan, 300 on its ‘Professional’ plan and 500 on its ‘Enterprise’ plan. And you can’t run ‘paid webinars’ (i.e., where people pay to attend) unless you’re on the ‘Professional’ plan, which is a bit disappointing.
Webinars are not available at all on the cheapest Getresponse offering (its ‘Basic’ plan), but you can pay another $40 or $99 per month to enable this functionality and allow 100 or 500 attendees respectively to tune in.
It’s now possible to manage an e-commerce inventory within and sell products directly from Getresponse and to make use of Getresponse’s dedicated conversion funnel feature to automate ad campaigns, data capture, transactions, abandoned cart recovery and more.
You can do similar things with Mailchimp, via its new ‘online store’ feature proceedings, building landing pages and creating customer journeys — but there’s arguably more separate processes involved and slightly more ‘joining the dots’ to do than in Getresponse.
My feeling is that for now, serious e-commerce operators will continue to make use of established platforms like BigCommerce or Shopify to sell products online rather than using a email marketing platform like Getresponse or Mailchimp.
That said, Getresponse’s all-in-one approach has the potential to be useful to some merchants, particularly those starting out, those hosting paid webinars, or those who want to manage as many aspects of a sales process as possible using only one tool.
Getresponse has now added a ‘chat’ feature that, as the name suggests, adds live chat functionality to your website (either one you’ve created via Getresponse’s new website builder feature, or your own existing site).
At time of writing, this feature is available on all Getresponse plans — but after August 2021 you can expect it to be restricted to the more expensive ones.
To enable Getresponse Chats, you add a snippet of code to your site which then displays a live chat option to your visitors.
There are lots of contexts where this sort of functionality will come in very useful, so it’s definitely a nice addition to Getresponse’s feature set.
The final Getresponse feature for which there’s not a direct Mailchimp equivalent is its ‘push notifications’ tool.
By adding a snippet of Getresponse code to your site, you can allow visitors to your site to opt in to browser-based notifications (which will you can display to your site visitors in future regardless of what website they’re currently browsing).
You can use these notifications as part of an automated subscriber journey too — for example, 15 minutes after a subscriber clicks on a link in an email about a promotion you’re running, you could display a push notification in their web browser about that particular offer.
This feature is only available on the more expensive ‘Professional’ or ‘Max’ plans, however.
Building websites with Mailchimp and Getresponse
Just as well-known website builders like Wix and Squarespace have in recent years introduced new email marketing features, leading email marketing solutions like Getresponse and Mailchimp have started to provide website building features.
Mailchimp has had a built-in website builder tool since 2019; and Getresponse launched theirs earlier this year.
The main difference between the two offerings involves e-commerce: Mailchimp’s website builder lets you sell products, and Getresponse’s currently doesn’t.
In terms of the quality of the website builders, both let you build a simple website easily enough and will be fine for users with very simple requirements.
However, they are fairly feature light, and not yet a replacement for more established online store builders tools like Shopify or Squarespace.
Finally, there’s customer support to consider.
Getresponse used to be a clear winner in this department, because phone, live chat and email support were offered, whereas Mailchimp only offered email or live chat support.
The company recently axed its phone support however — on all plans but their enterprise-level “Max” offering — so now both Mailchimp and Getresponse offer a similar level of support.
Mailchimp provides phone support on its most expensive offering too (the $299+ ‘Premium’ plan).
If phone support is an absolute deal-breaker for you, you might want to take a look at Aweber — one of the few email marketing products that still includes it at an affordable rate. (For more details on this product, please see our Aweber review).
In terms of the languages that support is offered in, Mailchimp provides it in English, Spanish, French, German and Portuguese.
The email support provided by Getresponse is available in English, Polish, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Russian, and Portuguese.
Getresponse vs Mailchimp: the verdict
Overall, I have to say that Getresponse is the clear winner in this shootout — it’s cheaper to use and comes with considerably more features (webinars, conversion funnels and more sophisticated landing pages to name just a few). Unlike Mailchimp, there are no send limits; and unsubscribed contacts don’t count towards your list size. All this ultimately makes Getresponse the much better value product of the two being discussed here.
In particular, Getresponse’s webinars, chats and push notifications are really useful tools to have in your digital marketing toolbox — and I feel that they do make Getresponse more of an ‘all in one’ platform than Mailchimp.
On top of that, the flexible approach to data segmentation makes Getresponse a much better tool for managing an email list (or multiple lists) and using your data in creative or sophisticated ways.
There is one strong argument for using Mailchimp over Getresponse: its free plan, which is admittedly very generous for anyone with a small list and basic email marketing requirements.
Additionally, its built-in store builder currently makes managing e-commerce and email marketing using just one product a bit easier than Getresponse.
I’ll leave you with a list of the key pros and cons of each product. As with all products we review however, we suggest that you test them fully yourself before purchase: you can try Mailchimp for free here or try Getresponse for free here.
The pros and cons of Getresponse and Mailchimp
Reasons to use Getresponse over Mailchimp
You get considerably more functionality on the entry-level ‘Basic’ plan than the Mailchimp equivalent (including fully-fledged autoresponders, e-commerce features and the option to code your own templates).
You are only charged for active subscribers on your list — Mailchimp charges you to host unsubscribed contacts.
There are no send limits to worry about in Getresponse.
Emailing and excluding multiple segments and multiple lists is very easy in Getresponse — but impossible in all but the most expensive version of Mailchimp.
You can host webinars with Getresponse; with Mailchimp you’ll need to use another application.
- Getresponse offers live chat and push notification features — these are not available from Mailchimp.
Getresponse’s landing pages facilitate automatic A/B testing; Mailchimp’s currently do not.
Generous discounts are available for Getresponse if you pay upfront for a year or more’s service.
- The number of variants you can use in a split test is higher in Getresponse (you can test 5 emails against each other; Mailchimp’s limit is 3).
- Customer support is offered in more languages.
Some users may find the built-in e-commerce / ‘conversion’ features useful.
Reasons to use Mailchimp over Getresponse
Its free plan is generous, allowing you access to many key features (including autoresponders) and to send 10,000 emails per month to up to 2,000 subscribers.
Mailchimp arguably integrates better with a wider range of third-party tools and services (with the notable exception of Shopify).
It provides translation functionality.
If your list is very small (i.e., contains less than 500 records), you can start sending e-newsletters more cheaply with Mailchimp.
Some users will appreciate the modern, minimal interface — it’s arguably a bit slicker than the Getresponse one.
Mailchimp lets you use more variables when conducting split tests.
- Its website builder facilitates e-commerce; Getresponse’s doesn’t.
Over to you!
Have you got something to say about Getresponse or Mailchimp, or do have you any further queries about these products?
Share your thoughts in the comments below — we’ll do our best to answer any questions you may have.
Alternatives to Mailchimp and Getresponse
There are many alternatives to Getresponse and Mailchimp available.
Campaign Monitor is worth a look too — it’s got a great interface and its templates are really strong. It is, however, very expensive by comparison to most email marketing tools.
If your needs are very simple, then Mad Mimi might be for you — it’s extremely basic in functionality terms, but it provides a very cheap way to send out a newsletter.
More email marketing resources / further reading
You may find our below email marketing tool resources useful:
our Aweber review
David Gaughran’s write up of the changes to Mailchimp’s pricing structure