As a small business owner or blogger, you’ve likely been told the importance of having an email list a million times. And since you’re the type of person who wants to make big things happen, you figure you might as well start a list of your own. But what platform do you use? You hear people gushing over ConvertKit (and rightly so) and then you hear others proclaiming their love for MailChimp. What’s a smart business owner to do?
While I’m a huge fan of ConvertKit, I honestly recommend MailChimp for those just starting a list. Why? Three reasons: it’s free, it’s easy to use, it’s packed with features, and there are tons of integrations. Keep reading for a more in-depth look at why MailChimp is the best platform for starting an email list.
Free for up to 2000 subscribers
When you’re just starting out, you usually have no clue what you’re doing. You’re essentially just testing the waters, so a platform with a big investment can be scary.
Luckily, MailChimp is free! Or at least it’s free for up to 2000 subscribers. And since you’re just starting out, that 2000 subscribers is still a ways away. Being free means you can really test things out before you commit to anything. Because let’s face it, starting an email list is a huge commitment and if it’s something you’d rather not do (although you really should), why waste money?
Plus, as your email list grows eventually you’ll have to take the plunge and pay, regardless of what platform you’re on. Might as well take advantage of not having to pay for as long as possible, right?
Easy to build gorgeous templates
As I said before, when you’re starting out, you likely have no clue what you’re doing. And some email marketing platforms are not user friendly at all. But that’s not the case with MailChimp.
MailChimp uses a great drag and drop email template builder that makes creating the perfect email a breeze. You can drag and drop text, images, and other content into one of many premade layouts with different column configurations. There’s also a ton of customization options including font colors, background colors, spacing, etc. Definitely so much easier than hand coding a template from scratch!
Tons of features
MailChimp may be easy to use, but that doesn’t stop it from having tons of helpful features that make managing an email list a breeze. From analytics to automations to landing pages, you can do many things that the fancy email platforms can, but with the benefit of an easy to use platform.
Analytics – See what’s working and what’s not working. You can view subscriber growth, email open rates, click rates, and unsubscribes.
Automation – Set up a series for onboarding new subscribers, reward customers, and even re-engage inactive subscribers with easy to use automations.
Landing pages – Forget Leadpages. With MailChimp you can easily create high converting landing pages for free!
Lots of integrations
A major part of growing an email list is placing opt-in forms on your website. All email platforms include handy embed codes so you can do this, but they’re not pretty. Usually when you just copy and paste them, the styling is way off from your website (even if you spend some time customizing it). And then there are special places you might want to add forms to (like on a bar at the top of your site or in a popup) that just aren’t possible with the embed code your platform provides you.
That’s where plugins come in. There are tons of great plugins available that allow you to customize the look of your form and place it exactly where you want it. The only problem? These plugins usually only support the most popular email platforms. So if you’re using some obscure platform, you’re out of luck.
However, I’ve found that MailChimp is one of the most supported email platforms when it comes to various integrations. It works with things such as Gravity Forms, Bloom, Optinmonster, Leadpages, and the list goes on.
Using a platform that can be integrated in just about any way imaginable means that you can quickly build just about anything you need, rather than hunting down roundabout solutions.
Why MailChimp is the best platform for starting an email list
MailChimp really is the best platform when it comes to starting an email list. Not only is it extremely easy to use, but it boasts a tons of great features and integrations all for the price of $0. Starting an email list can be difficult as it is, but MailChimp makes it as easy as possible (if only they could write your emails!). That’s why I always recommend MailChimp for small business owners looking to start an email list.
PS: I’m going to be launching a course on MailChimp in the coming weeks. It’ll walk you through everything you need to know to get MailChimp up and running on your WordPress website, from setting up your account to integrating it on your site. Click here to get notified when it launches.