ActiveCampaign is a robust platform that combines email marketing with CRM functionality, making it an ideal choice for businesses of all sizes. Many users find it an effective tool for automating emails, creating newsletters, and sending SMS messages. With so many features, it’s essential to consider various perspectives on this software, as found in different reviews.
While many customers embrace activecampaign’s robust features, there are mixed opinions about its ease of use and support. Some users report that the platform can be challenging to learn and slow to load, while others praise it as a reliable personal assistant. This article will examine the strengths, weaknesses, and overall user experience of ActiveCampaign.
Overview of ActiveCampaign
ActiveCampaign is an all-in-one marketing automation platform primarily focusing on email marketing, sales automation, and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software. It is designed for small businesses and offers a range of features to help automate communication with prospects and customers.
We are featuring 3 of the most notable features included in the ActiveCampaign platform are:
Email Campaigns, Templates, and Personalization
In addition to email campaigns, SMS marketing is also available with the Plus plan.
ActiveCampaign users can access various add-on apps to facilitate social media marketing.
Email campaigns can be categorized into different types, such as standard campaigns, automated campaigns, autoresponders, split testing campaigns, RSS feed campaigns, and date-based campaigns for special occasions.
For those new to ActiveCampaign, beginning with the “Standard” campaign is recommended.
There are over 125 email templates available for selection, but users can opt to create their own from scratch or choose a minimal template instead. For those concerned about branding consistency, starting with a nearly blank template is recommended.
The available design options are modern and flat. They are simple and won’t be distracting, but they are also not particularly impressive. However, this is for email, so the focus should be on readability rather than visual impact.
The templates have the added benefit of being responsive and compatible with mobile screens.
For those who desire more customization, there is the option to import or design personalized HTML templates. In addition, those who highly value their style guide may commission a set of email templates explicitly tailored to their needs.
ActiveCampaign offers over 125 templates for use.
The email builder/editor features a drag-and-drop interface and provides predefined content blocks that can be arranged in any order. Customizing colors are simple, but font options may be limited depending on the chosen template. Careful consideration when selecting a template is recommended.
There are many options when it comes to adding content to your email. You can add text, images, buttons, videos, social links, blocks of HTML code, and even an RSS feed. If you upload images, you can edit them by cropping them. Some templates have stock images, but it’s best to use your own images. There is no stock image library available.
You can adjust the width of the email preview to view it on different screen sizes. The support for right-to-left languages such as Hebrew and Arabic is limited. It only functions in raw HTML blocks or custom HTML templates. If you plan to use these languages, having some coding knowledge is best.
Although not a complete deal-breaker, it presents a significant disadvantage for global businesses.
The email editor of ActiveCampaign is user-friendly and uncomplicated.
Emails can be personalized using variables to display individual user information. This allows for a more personal greeting, using the recipient’s real name instead of a generic term. It’s essential to use the name they provided when signing up.
Additional variables can be utilized are the contact’s address, phone number, or IP address. Additionally, social media sharing buttons have been incorporated into this feature.
Conditional display tags enable the display or concealment of various content blocks, contingent on the email recipient. This functionality can be utilized based on tags, deals of interest, subscription date, location, or list membership.
A/B testing is offered, but with significant limitations. Essentially, it allows you to send two different versions of an email to your recipients; one may contain formal writing, while the other may contain more infomercial-style language.
Automation can be beneficial. For example, if you have two lists of contacts, one for deals and one for industry news, you can use automation to inform the industry news list about a new deal without being too pushy.
Instead of directing readers to fill out another form for deals in the taco-making industry, consider a more efficient approach to avoid lost interest.
The automation tools provided by ActiveCampaign enable users to create automatic processes. An example could be a link that prompts users to sign up for dog-walking supply deals through a CTA button.
More than 250 automation templates are available for use, including duplicate versions in different languages. These templates cover a range of processes, such as abandoned cart email notifications and targeted follow-up emails. Additionally, customers can be tagged based on their interest in specific products.
The automation interface in ActiveCampaign offers advanced flexibility. Users can share automation recipes and import others’, which can be a time-saving benefit due to the size of the community.
It is important to note that some features, such as SMS messaging automation workflows, require higher-priced plans.
A landing page builder exists, and it’s pretty good. However, it’s only available on the Plus plan and above. During your free trial of ActiveCampaign, you can try them out. There are over 40 templates for landing pages, and they all look good. Some are simple, while others are more intricate. I find the landing page templates more engaging than the email templates.
40 landing page templates are available, which can be useful for your needs.
The landing page and email builders share the same principle of dragging and dropping pre-designed content blocks. The landing page builder offers more layout flexibility, which is beneficial.
The designs are mobile-responsive; however, there is no support for right-to-left languages. This may be disappointing for some, but not necessarily a major issue for all.
Familiarity with website builders like Wix or Squarespace will simplify using ActiveCampaign’s landing page builder.
There is no limit to the number of landing pages that can be made.
One benefit of this platform is the ability to connect a custom domain, allowing landing pages to appear as a seamless extension of your website. This can improve trust and clarity for customers and contacts, making it a valuable feature.
Let’s review some features that are not exclusively email-related but offer great utility.
ActiveCampaign has a live chat feature that can be added to your website. The chatbox lets you communicate with potential customers for sales or customer support. You can track these interactions with the Unified inbox, which logs every customer interaction. This includes email responses and chatbox messages.
It’s important to note that the mentioned features are categorized under “Conversations,” which is an add-on feature for ActiveCampaign and requires a separate payment.
The library of third-party add-ons and integrations is free of charge. There are over 850 add-on apps available. Whether or not this is too many depends on personal preference. It’s great to have options!
The ActiveCampaign app marketplace provides various online services that are in high demand.
Various online services are available for business, including Google Analytics, WordPress, Shopify, WooCommerce, AccessAlly, Airtable, GitLab, Hootsuite, and many others. The creators of these services have been very active.
According to Venture Harbour, one of the standout features of ActiveCampaign is its ability to test hypotheses on marketing strategies, such as comparing the performance of different email-sending frequencies or combining other communication channels.
While the platform offers a variety of useful features, its pricing can be a downside for some users, as mentioned on TechRadar. ActiveCampaign offers four pricing tiers:
|Plan||Price per month|
|Enterprise||Call ActiveCampaign For Details|
Each plan offers different sets of features tailored to the needs of varying business sizes and requirements.
ActiveCampaign offers numerous integrations, with new ones being added regularly. Zapier or the open API can facilitate the integration of any self-made software.
E-commerce software such as Shopify, BigCommerce, and Woocommerce is considered to be deeply integrated. This feature provides additional contact information, enables tag application, adds fields to the contact’s record, provides purchase history, and more.
Some commonly used integrations are:
- The e-commerce platforms of Shopify, BigCommerce, and Woocommerce are widely used.
- The email editor for ActiveCampaign is called BEE.
- There is a plugin available for WordPress.
- The tool used for analyzing website traffic is called Google Analytics.
- Calendly is a scheduling software.
- SalesForce CRM
There are more than 100 integrations categorized under various headings like online course software, lead generation software, CRMs, and others.
Pros of ActiveCampaign
Ease of Use
One of the primary benefits of ActiveCampaign is its user-friendly interface. The platform is designed to be easy for beginners and experienced users to navigate, allowing them to quickly create and implement email campaigns.
The drag-and-drop email builder is handy, enabling users to design professional-looking emails without coding or advanced technical knowledge. This ease of use has been noted in various reviews as a significant pro for users of ActiveCampaign. For example, EmailToolTester highlighted the powerful but easy-to-use marketing automation features.
Another significant advantage of ActiveCampaign is its marketing automation tools. These features enable users to automate various aspects of their email marketing campaigns, such as sending personalized messages based on user behavior or triggering follow-up emails after a specific event.
The depth of automation capabilities extends beyond basic email marketing, allowing businesses to streamline their marketing processes and improve overall efficiency. Many reviewers, including those at GetApp, have praised ActiveCampaign’s effective implementation and optimization of marketing funnels across different industries.
Email Marketing Performance
ActiveCampaign is known for its excellent email deliverability rates, which is essential when selecting an email marketing platform. High deliverability rates ensure that your messages reach the intended recipients, helping to optimize your overall campaign performance.
In addition to deliverability, the platform offers a range of advanced features, such as machine learning to improve email marketing results. According to Email Vendor Selection, users have experienced great email deliverability from the start, contributing to the platform’s favorable reputation in email marketing.
Cons of ActiveCampaign
Customer Support Issues
Some users have mentioned encountering occasional customer support issues with ActiveCampaign. This might include delayed responses or receiving insufficient help for specific concerns. While many users still manage to resolve their problems, it is essential to consider the potential for support hiccups when deciding on an email marketing platform.
ActiveCampaign’s wide range of features and powerful automation capabilities make it an attractive option for businesses looking for advanced email marketing tools. However, this also comes with a steeper learning curve, particularly for those who prefer a simpler, more straightforward solution (source).
The email design tools can also be buggy, requiring extra care to ensure the final formatting looks correct to recipients (source).
ActiveCampaign’s powerful features can help businesses achieve their email marketing goals. However, it’s crucial to consider the potential customer support issues and the steeper learning curve associated with using the platform. Understanding these limitations can help businesses decide when to choose an email marketing solution.
Many businesses seek alternatives to ActiveCampaign for the perfect email marketing solution. To help you make informed decisions, we’ll briefly overview some notable options and their unique features.
MailerLite is a budget-friendly option suitable for businesses with basic email marketing needs, like setting up welcome sequences. The platform offers a free plan with limited features and is known for its user-friendly interface. Learn more about MailerLite from EmailToolTester’s ActiveCampaign Review.
Omnisend is another popular email marketing platform offering advanced automation features and seamless integration with e-commerce platforms. Omnisend focuses on helping online retailers increase their sales through targeted email and SMS campaigns. For more on Omnisend, check out their blog post on ActiveCampaign alternatives.
SendinBlue is known for its wide features, including email marketing, SMS messaging, and live chat. The platform also provides an intuitive drag-and-drop email builder, making it easy for businesses to create professional-quality campaigns. More details about SendinBlue and other competitors can be found in 3andFour’s guide to ActiveCampaign alternatives.
Here’s a comparison table of the alternatives with their unique features:
|MailerLite||Free plan, user-friendly interface, simple automations|
|Omnisend||Advanced automations, e-commerce integration, SMS campaigns|
|SendinBlue||Email marketing, SMS messaging, live chat, drag-and-drop builder|
To further explore ActiveCampaign alternatives, visit Gartner’s list of ActiveCampaign competitor platforms to read users’ latest reviews and ratings.
In summary, ActiveCampaign has proven to be a powerful email marketing tool with impressive automation and analytics. It caters to starter and advanced marketers, meeting their marketing automation needs.
While it may not be perfect, as noted in the Crazyegg review, many users appreciate its comprehensive features that allow businesses to maximize the impact of their marketing campaigns. Some of these features include:
- Extensive automations
- Strong analytics
- An excellent in-house contact database
Finally, it is essential to carefully evaluate your business requirements and budget when selecting an email marketing service. ActiveCampaign is a competitive option, but make sure it aligns with your company’s specific needs and goals.