Nearly 320 billion emails hit inboxes globally every single day.
That’s a lotta noise for eCommerce vendors to get through to reach customers. And while email marketing software has made the battle a little easier, not every tool is built the same.
Some software empowers marketers to send email campaigns straight out the box with sleek templates, while others get technical with custom code and segmenting options. The best email marketing software for eCommerce will offer both, which is why it's important to research which tool is the right fit for your store.
This list will take you through the top email marketing software, from simple solutions to tools fit for Enterprise so that you can make the right decision.
These are the 7 best platforms you should use for email marketing in 2023 👇
💻 eCommerce integrations: BigCommerce, Shopify, WooCommerce, Miva, ClickBank, Smile.io, CartHook, ClickFunnels.
💰 Pricing: Plans start at $83/month for 5000 subscribers.
What is Sendlane?
Sendlane is an email and SMS marketing software built specifically for eCommerce vendors.
Founded in 2013, Sendlane comes packed with features. From basic email Automations like welcome emails to advanced features like Multivariable Segmentation and Experiments - Multivariable Testing, Sendlane is suitable for marketing newbies and seasoned veterans. It even has 50+ Pre-Built Funnels to target browse abandonment and post-purchase nurturing that can be used straight out of the box.
Sendlane also owns and operates its own deliverability infrastructure. Our tool doesn't rely on third parties for data and analytics about your customers like some of the other tools on the list. With Sendlane's multi-store capabilities, vendors with more than one store can get clear, easy to access data without digging around in other interfaces.
Pair this with our SMS capabilities, and Sendlane gives eCommerce providers a truly integrated email and SMS software under one roof.
Finally, Sendlane’s dashboard makes tracking campaigns and KPIs simple. It splits campaigns based on activity, revenue and even platforms so you can see what’s working and what’s not.
A number of new features are currently being developed by Sendlane, such as back-in-stock notifications, virtual contact cards, and text-to-join options.
Pros and cons
✔️ You have access to every feature Sendlane offers regardless of your plan (SMS can be added on as subscription to any plan)
✔️ Customer support available 24/7/365 - even on holidays - in 30 seconds or less
✔️ 50+ Pre-built email and SMS funnels & email templates to customize
✔️ Upfront data analytics
❌ No freemium option
❌ SMS marketing only available for US and Canadian numbers (for now!)
Sendlane’s pricing tiers are transparent and simple. After finishing the 14-day free trial, you’ll be moved onto a paid plan depending on your needs. Inside your Sendlane account, you can select your email & SMS plan depending on your needs!
Want to try Sendlane? Sign up here.
💻 eCommerce integrations: Shopify, BigCommerce, Adobe Commerce, Big Cartel,
💰 Pricing: Forever free plan. Essentials plan starts at $9.99/month.
What is Mailchimp?
Mailchimp deserves a spot on our list because it helped pave the way for a lot of email marketing tools we use today.
Founded in 2001, Mailchimp was one of the first tools to offer marketers drag-and-drop designs and templates instead of learning complex code. While designs are basic (and a little restrictive), they're also optimized to work on all devices, from mobiles to desktops. This makes Mailchimp an easy choice to launch a campaign quickly without having to be an expert in optimization or content block placement.
Mailchimp’s simplicity comes with drawbacks. Designs are restrictive and customizing elements like text and images to match your branding can be difficult because Mailchimp limits them to ensure deliverability.
Mailchimp: The pros and cons
✔️ The free plan is generous (2000 subscribers). It’s enough to start nurturing an email list without paying for another tool
✔️ The simple drag-and-drop builder is a good way to learn the basics of email design
✔️ Emails can be sent to subscribers based on their local timezones to optimize open and read rates
❌ Mailchimp gets uber pricey if you have a large subscriber list
❌ Basic and restrictive. The designs aren’t great for eye-catching eCommerce campaigns.
Mailchimp's forever free plan allows a maximum of 2,000 to a list and 12,000 email sends a month. However, this plan is restrictive, and you don't have access to features like timezone optimization or A/B testing.
The upgrade to a paid plan starts at $11/month for a list of 500 subscribers and increases as your list grows. The catch is to access the best features, like audience segmentation and multivariate testing, you need to pay for the premium plan, which starts at a whopping $299/month.
💻 eCommerce integrations: Shopify, Magento, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, Gumroad, Podia, Grazecart, SendOwl.
💰 Pricing: Plans start at $39/month.
What is Drip?
Drip is a unique email marketing software as it is purely aimed at teams who want to launch drip campaigns.
Drip campaigns are email sequences that "drip" messages to your customers over several days or weeks. If a subscriber signs up to your list, the drip sequence may start with a welcome email and three days later, follow up with another talking about your brand.
Now, a lot of the tools on our list offer drip sequences. So, what sets Drip apart? 🤔
The advanced customizations in Drip's sequences are what draw marketers in. Firstly, the tool has integrated forms you can add to landing and sales pages to collect information from subscribers and encourage sign-ups. Once subscribers are in your funnel, Drip's sequences can send them messages based on their behavior, previous purchases and average order value.
If a user shows interest in a product, Drip’s social media integrations can also display marketing campaigns across Facebook and Instagram feeds for maximum impact.
Now to the downsides. For all its features, Drip is missing a few essentials that come with basically every other email marketing software on the market. There’s no landing page builder to help you funnel new subscribers from marketing campaigns, and there aren’t many prebuilt design templates to choose from.
Drip: The pros and cons
✔️ Prebuilt drip campaigns focused on building relationships using welcome emails, post-purchase and even happy birthday sequences
✔️ Segmentation tools allow markets to build hyper-targeted campaigns
✔️ Campaigns can be customized using triggers, decisions and time delays
❌ No drag-and-drop functionality for designing templates
❌ Support is very limited and not available on nights or weekends
Drip has a 14-day free trial and doesn’t limit its features, so you can really take it for a test drive and figure out if it's the right fit.
After the free trial, pricing starts at $39/month for 2,500 subscribers. Weirdly, lists with over 30,000 subscribers also have limits placed on how many emails they can send a month:
Some quick math tells us a brand with 30,001 subscribers only gets around 13 emails a month to their list. While that may be enough, it’s a bit restrictive if you’re paying $500+ for the tool.
💻 eCommerce integrations: Shopify, CartBounty, eBay, Gumroad, Magento, BigCommerce.
💰 Pricing: Paid plans start at $29/month.
What is ActiveCampaign?
ActiveCampaign is more like a two-in-one as you get email marketing and CRM tools.
The platform has a ton of useful features that are based around saving time and improving productivity. First, there’s the email scheduling tool that uses machine learning to send out messages at optimal times. Then there’s the automation features, which allow you to plug in a bunch of different channels to follow up with customers and send out marketing campaigns automatically.
ActiveCampaign's lead scoring tool is also worth mentioning. It measures how engaged subscribers are with specific emails and product links. You can accurately segment subscribers and send targeted messages to your VIPs on the back of this information.
ActiveCampaign: The pros and cons
✔️ SMS, CRM and email marketing tools under one room
✔️ Accurate email scheduling and campaign sends thanks to machine learning
✔️ Advanced reporting for specific eCommerce platforms that tracks customer behavior like purchases, engagement and site visits
❌ ActiveCampaign isn’t exclusively an eCommerce email marketing tool and is used in other industries like healthcare and real estate, so some of the features aren’t relevant or useful
❌ It’s one of the more complex software on our list. Although ActiveCampaign has a learning resources on its website, it’s still a steep learning curve
ActiveCampaign has a 14-day free trial where you can test the software out. After that, paid plans start at $9/month for 500 subscribers.
However, ActiveCampaign's cheapest plan (Lite) isn't suitable for eCommerce vendors as it lacks store integrations and abandoned cart automations. To access these features, you'll need the Plus Plan, which is much more expensive at $49/month for 500 subscribers.
💻 eCmmerce integrations: Magento, Shopify, BigCommerce, Justuno, Facebook.
💰 Pricing: Paid plans start at $20/month.
What is Klaviyo?
Klaviyo is one of the new kids on the (email marketing software) block. Founded less than a decade ago, Klaviyo pitches itself as an eCommerce email marketing tool that gets messages into customers' heads.
Its headlining features—data analysis and advanced segmentation—are definitely worth mentioning. Klaviyo positions itself as a more advanced, in-depth tool, so it can create individual coupons, price drop alerts, browse abandonment flows and cart reminders based on product updates in a store and send them automatically.
Like the other tools on our list, Klaviyo comes with downsides.
Because of the advanced analytics and data involved with getting the most out of the platform, it comes with quite the learning curve. Not to mention, Klaviyo’s data can be skewed, making it hard for vendors to find the data they need to make accurate decisions. Finally, it's also more expensive than other options, putting it out of reach for some small eCommerce vendors.
Klaviyo: The pros and cons
✔️ Plenty of prebuilt email templates and automated sequences included to create campaigns quickly
✔️ UTM tracking of marketing campaigns and automated sequences
✔️ Sign-up forms integrate with gifts and offers to boost subscriptions
❌ Klaviyo's interface can be clunky, especially when building flows
❌ It’s expensive (keep reading in the pricing breakdown to see why)
Klaviyo does have a free plan, but only for <250 subscribers. For lists beyond that, paid plans start at $20/month for email and $35/month if you want to add on SMS marketing. When your list grows, Klaviyo starts to get expensive. Brands with lists of 100,000ish contacts are looking at a monthly bill of nearly $1500.
6. Constant Contact
💻 eCommerce integrations: eCommerce integrations: Shopify, Etsy, Ebay, Stripe, WooCommerce, Facebook Ads
💰 Pricing: Plans start at $15/month.
What is Constant Contact?
For eCommerce vendors looking for an email marketing tool which focuses on inmates and templates, Constant Contact may be a good fit.
The software offers all the stuff we expect in an email marketing tool: drag-and-drop templates, campaign tracking and A/B testing. Brands can also sell digital products and schedule social media posts from inside Constant Contact without paying for separate tools.
Oh, and another nice feature is the platform's SEO tool, which can optimize sales and product pages with title tags, keyword rankings and site audits. It saves you from paying for another tool if you only need SEO basics like this.
However, Constant Contact comes with drawbacks. Templates are difficult to customize, and the automated sequences and workflows are surprisingly lacking. Abandoned cart campaigns can only be created for Shopify and WooCommerce, and there’s no option to create win-back campaigns or use multivariate segmentation.
Constant Contact: The pros and cons
✔️ 60-day free trial
✔️ Great email deliverability rate and minimal spam
✔️ Lots of niche features like digital product sales and basic SEO
❌ (Very) limited email automation options compared to other tools on the list
❌ Some templates aren’t mobile responsive
Constant Contact pricing
After the 2-month trial of Constant Contact ends, users are moved to its paid plans which start at $9.99/month for 500 subscribers. However, this basic plan isn't great for eCommerce stores as it doesn't sync products from Shopify or Etsy stores and only includes basic automated welcome emails. You'll need the Plus plan to get these extras, which starts at $45/month for just 500 subscribers.
💻 eCommerce integrations: eCommerce integrations: WooCommerce, Shopify, BigCommerce, Easyship,
💰 Pricing: Plans start at $16/month.
What is Omnisend?
The final email marketing tool on our list is Omnisend—an all-in-one software boasting automation, push notifications and popup forms.
Marketers can send automated, segmented email campaigns, use prebuilt transactional email sequences to drive sales and even follow up with customers using SMS.
It has a huge library of ready-made templates to choose from so marketers can build a great-looking campaign right out of the box. And it's easy to customize them with brand colors, product links and dynamic discount codes.
Now, here comes the downsides.
Omnisend’s email automations don’t trigger if a customer signs up during a purchase—only through a form. Some customers say this adds friction to their email marketing efforts. Others say the tool’s forms and automations are clunky and hard to work with.
Omnisend: Pros and cons
✔️ The free plan includes 15,000 emails a month
✔️ “Product picker” feature automatically populates information into email campaigns
✔️ No learning curve and easy to use
❌ No phone support
❌ Oddly, Omnisend doesn't carry data across social media campaigns—you must input it manually each time.
Omnisend’s free plan allows up to 250 contacts and 500 sends a month. After that, the standard plan will cost you $20/month and include 12,000 email sends.
The best way to start with eCommerce email marketing
There is no right or wrong choice when it comes to email marketing software.
Do your research and pick a tool that suits your budget and will be a strong partner in helping your site reach its goals. If you’re just starting out, a simple tool like Mailchimp or Constant Contact may be a good choice to help you learn the basics of email marketing.
For brands that need a serious eCommerce marketing partner, a more advanced tool like Sendlane will allow you to tap into your customer's needs. But advanced doesn’t have to mean complicated - Sendlane’s simplified UI enables marketers to leverage features like Multivariable Segmentation, SMS, and multi-channel Automation with ease.
Want to try Sendlane? Click here to get our 14-day free trial.