There are a lot of email marketing services out there, but not all of them are created equal. Especially when it comes to features and performance.
At times, you may want a simple email marketing service that just handles sending out automated emails on your behalf. Others may appeal to you as a simple way to get started, but offer a lot more versatility.
Constant Contact and AWeber are both reputable service providers, but which one is right for your needs? Let’s take a closer look to see how they compare.
Let’s start with the basics: both Constant Contact and AWeber offer free accounts, though you may need to enter promo codes to access some special features. (These codes can usually be found on the product page or in the documentation.)
Additionally, both provide basic email marketing features, such as the ability to send single emails, list-management, and automated email replies. (For more complex needs, you may need to upgrade to a paid account.)
So far, so good. But beyond that, the features provided by Constant Contact and AWeber vary widely. In fact, one might argue that they are extremely similar, with the main difference being that Constant Contact offers a wider variety of features.
Performance is another important consideration, especially if you’re already paying for the service. (If you’re looking for a free service, some performance metrics can be found on the Notifications dashboard.)
You may want to consider how quickly your emails are delivered, how many bounces you get, and whether or not the service is scalable. (These are all important issues to consider, especially if you plan on sending a lot of emails.)
When it comes to performance, it’s important to keep in mind the type of audience you’re sending your emails to. If you’re sending them to a relatively tech-savvy audience, you may want to opt for a service that’s more fully-featured and stable. (This will depend on your needs. If you need help deciding, contact us.)
Integration is yet another important consideration, especially if you’re using tools like MailChimp or HubSpot, which both integrate well with email marketing services. (You’ll need a free account to be able to use these tools.)
If you have a tool like this integrated with your email marketing service, it can be a bonus when setting up automated emails because you don’t have to manually input the details for each recipient.
But if you don’t, you’ll need to remember every single email address that receives your messages (or at least, every single one that you want to keep track of). Especially if you’re sending to a large list, this can quickly become an organizational nightmare. (You can’t really make this worse; it’s something that you need to deal with whether you use a tool or not.)
Luckily, both Constant Contact and AWeber provide an easy way to integrate with other services and tools through API access. This essentially means that you can integrate your email marketing service with any other service or tool that accepts API requests. (It’s important to keep in mind that you have to enable API access for this to work.)
Support is another important consideration, especially if you’re using the service for the first time or if you have complex questions. (Complexity is relative; it depends on your experience level and the type of content you’re sending.)
Constant Contact and AWeber both offer support through email and live chat, though you may prefer one approach or the other.
If you’re looking for online documentation or a quick answer to a question, you may prefer to opt for a service that provides additional support channels, such as webinars and phone support. (This will depend on your needs. If you need help deciding, contact us.)
Ease Of Use
Ease of use is, in my opinion, the most important consideration when choosing an email marketing service. This is especially true if you’re a new user or if you have a technical, infrequent question. (Though, to be fair, the simplicity of both Constant Contact and AWeber’s interfaces are quite appealing, as are the few available templates.)
You may want to consider whether or not you want to use a service that’s mobile-optimized, has an easy to navigate UI, and is simple to set up. (These are all important issues to consider, especially if you plan on using the service frequently on the go.)
Cost is another important consideration, especially if you’re on a tight budget. (Though, to be fair, all the services mentioned here, with the exception of HubSpot, offer free tiers.)
If you have a limited budget, you may want to consider an email marketing service that’s quite affordable, or even free. (This will depend on your needs. If you need help deciding, contact us.)
Constant Contact and AWeber both offer a free service, though you may need to enter a promo code to access some features. But beyond that, the cost for the two services is quite similar. And, at least according to the AWeber pricing page, you’ll need to spend at least $2.50 per day to maintain your free account. (This is, in relative terms, quite a bit less than the going rate for most other email marketing services. And, to be fair, you’ll need to maintain a high level of activity to make this amount of money back.)
Finally, we have reliability. This is a broad term, but essentially means that the service will behave in the same way time and time again. (To an extent, this can be tested by looking at bounce rates and the like, though it’s more accurate to look at error rates and the like. (These are all important issues to consider, especially if you plan on sending a lot of emails.)
Constant Contact and AWeber both offer highly-reliable services, though, in my opinion, AWeber is a bit more reliable. (This will depend on your needs. If you need help deciding, contact us.)
In the grand scheme of things, this is simply a matter of personal preference. But, if you’re looking for a simple and reliable service, you may prefer to opt for Constant Contact or AWeber.