SendinBlue vs Mailchimp: Email Marketing in 2020

Wish you had an easier way to get the most out of your email marketing?

Don't we all?

These days, email marketing might not seem like the most modern or exciting way to connect with your customers – but it's still one of the most valuable. Email delivers an ROI of around 4400% – that's $44 for every $1 spent.

To take advantage of the incredible opportunities that email marketing has to offer, vendors have invested a significant amount of time and money into creating email marketing systems that allow businesses to send incredible content to their customers according to crucial triggers and schedules.

Mailchimp and SendinBlue are just two of the most popular email marketing options on the market.

Each of these options come with their own variety of fantastic solutions to offer, including state-of-the-art sales funnels, templates, and email builders.

Our SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp review is here to help you figure out which software is right for you.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: Pricing

Perhaps the most important thing you'll need to consider if you're a small business looking for marketing help is how much your email tool is going to cost.

After all, you've got to divide the cash you have for marketing between a multitude of different places, including social media, your own website, and even direct mail.

Whether you’re sending transactional emails, investing in SMS marketing, or anything else, you need to ensure that you’ve got the right budget in place to pay for your eCommerce campaigns.

The good news is that both Mailchimp and SendinBlue come with free tiers available. In other words, you can start your email marketing campaign without sending a penny:

Unfortunately, the free packages from both SendinBlue and Mailchimp have their limitations. You're not going to get anywhere near as many features as you'd have if you upgraded to the paid services.

The good news for budget-conscious companies is that even the paid options from SendinBlue are relatively cheap.

sendinblue pricing

Pricing starts at $25 per month for the “Lite” option and goes all the way up to a custom quote for Enterprise brands.

The “Premium” package for $66 per month is probably the best value, as it comes with access to things like Facebook ads, landing pages, chat functionality, marketing automation, and multi-user access. You can also adjust your pricing based on how many emails you think you're going to send each month.

Crucially, you'll need at least the “Essential” package if you want to remove the SendinBlue logo from your email content.

On the other hand, Mailchimp used to be a lot more affordable before the company made some basic changes to its pricing structure. Although there's still a free option, Mailchimp isn't quite as cheap as it used to be.

mailchimp pricing

Saying that it's still cheaper than SendinBlue to get started. The Essentials package begins at $9.99 per month, and the impressive “Standard” package for $14.99 per month comes with access to things like automation, retargeting ads, advanced insights for your audience and more.

Obviously, if you want the best selection of features, then you'll need to upgrade to “Premium,” which is a lot more expensive. However, this package does come with access to multivariate testing – which is a must-have for some brands.

🏅 Verdict: Both companies offer a helpful “free” version for beginners. Mailchimp's paid packages are more affordable, to begin with but get a lot more expensive when you reach the “Premium” tier.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: Email Templates and Editing

One of the best things about having an email marketing automation tool in your kit is that it frees you from the stress of having to hire a graphic designer and developer to make attractive and professional-looking emails for you.

SendinBlue comes with access to over 200 responsive email templates. While they're not all as stunning as they could be, the chances are that you'll find at least a handful of options that appeal to you.

sendinblue email templates

If you don't love the email you end up with first-time around; you can edit your content's appearance using the drag-and-drop email builder. The only issue here is that SendinBlue‘s email builder is a little outdated and basic compared to some of the other contenders on the market. There's not a lot you can do when it comes to changing things like fonts and backgrounds.

On the plus side, you can check how your email will look on mobile before you use it, so you're less likely to rub mobile users the wrong way.

Mailchimp also has an incredible range of options to offer when it comes to email templates. There are even more templates than SendinBlue – though not all of them are particularly attractive.

mailchimp email templates

The good news is that one of the things that makes Mailchimp so great is how easy it is to adapt your email to suit your brand and style. If you want to upgrade your emails, all you need to do is tap into the drag-and-drop builder, which comes with a lot more options than you'd get on SendinBlue.

As you play with your email content in the builder, you'll find the option to add images, adjust your text, implement CTA buttons, and more. You can even add links to your social media pages or include a video if you want to.

Even if you don't have a lot of experience using email editors, you shouldn't have a hard time with Mailchimp. Everything fits together automatically, which means that you don't need to worry about aligning different elements to make them look cohesive and professional.

🏅Verdict: While both pieces of software come with a range of templates to choose from, and an immersive drag-and-drop builder, Mailchimp is still the top choice. Mailchimp has more templates to begin with, and a far more comprehensive editing tool too. You’ll need to think about the number of emails that you need to send and how many extra features you need when you’re choosing between SendinBlue vs Mailchimp.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: Autoresponders and Automation

Once you know how to create some attractive emails for your brand on Mailchimp or SendinBlue, you'll be able to start developing the automated sequences that send those messages to your contacts. The good news is that each piece of software comes with the opportunity to automate your emails relatively easily.

SendinBlue is all about simplicity when it comes to building autoresponders. That means that you're not going to get the most advanced experience in the world. However, if you're a beginner, you may appreciate the fact that SendinBlue comes with so many pre-built workflows to get you started:

You'll be able to build your email campaigns based on the goals that you want to achieve. For instance, if you're going to respond to a customer after a product purchase, click on the “Product Purchase” option.

There's also the option to add a tracking script, so you can send emails to customers based on when they visit specific pages on your website, or when they click on essential buttons:

It's all very straightforward and easy-to-use, which is great if you've never used an email autoresponders software before.

Mailchimp also comes with a range of options to start building your autoresponders based on pre-built templates. However, there aren't quite as many options here as you'd get with SendinBlue.

Unlike SendinBlue, the experience isn't quite as smooth and seamless when you're building autoresponders with Mailchimp. You're limited in the kinds of triggers that you can use to set up automated messages, and your editing options for funnels are pretty restrictive too.

Importantly, one main issue with Mailchimp's autoresponder functionality is that it's only available once you move into some of the higher pricing packages. This means that you won't get access to this functionality if you're on the free or low-tier package.

Another thing to keep in mind when you’re making your choice, is that both Mailchimp and SendinBlue email marketing software come with pricing plans that include plugins for SMS campaigns and other tools. You may want to consider how easy it is to use automated campaigns that move between different channels, including social media, sms and email when you’re trying to reach your audience.

🏅Verdict: SendinBlue might not be the most immersive automated campaign builder in the world, but it's a lot better than Mailchimp. We'd pick SendinBlue for designing trigger-based autoresponders and tracking your emails.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: Segmentation

Whether you’re sending transactional emails, or you’re working on the email marketing solution for your blog or membership site, it’s important to remember that segmentation is the key to success. Ensuring that you send the right messages to the right customers can increase your chances of conversions and reduce your bounce rate too!

Personalized emails have the potential to improve your click-through rates by as much as 14%.

Aside from helping with segmentation, SendinBlue ensures that you’re always going to be compliant with your email messages too. You’ll have to confirm that you’re complaint with CAN-SPAM regulations before you open your account – like so:

Additionally, SendinBlue makes it easy to keep track of your email marketing contacts with bulk-updates via CSV files. Unfortunately, you might have some issues mapping information to each contact, as adding attributes needs to be done on a one-by-one basis. This is a huge pain if you have a large number of contacts.

Once you do finally get all your contacts loaded up to your account, however, you can segment your digital marketing strategy by things like residence, location, and even employment. SendinBlue even offers something that you don’t usually get with Mailchimp and Mailchimp alternatives. You’ll be able to access some basic CRM functionality – but we’ll come back to that later.

Alternatively, Mailchimp also provides a simple and effective process for segmenting your email list and improving your email marketing solution.

Just like with SendinBlue, you’ll be able to load details for customers using CSV files, and you can define each of your clients using segments. Groups are also available to define customers according to previous actions that they’ve taken with your organization.

With Mailchimp, you can also develop your segments with conditional information too. For instance, you’ll be able to create campaigns that reach people depending on triggers that they trip when searching through your site. Unfortunately, the advanced segmentation for your contact lists and follow-up for your campaigns is restricted to the higher-tier pricing packages.

Mailchimp also doesn’t allow for targeting people from multiple groups at once. That’s because Mailchimp’s lists, unlike the solutions on other email marketing platforms, are mutually exclusive. You can’t include contacts on different lists in the same campaigns, which makes the whole experience less user friendly.

When it comes to managing your email list and segmentation, the email marketing service is a lot simpler with SendinBlue.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: Registration Forms

When it comes to choosing the right email marketing solution, you don’t just need unlimited contacts and a dedicated IP. You’re also going to need a way for people on your WooCommerce, Shopify, or Magneto ecommerce website to opt-in to your email list. Signup forms, or registration forms can help with this. Although these forms are relatively common among email marketing services, that doesn’t make them any less valuable.

Mailchimp can make it a little more difficult to create your signup forms, because there’s no information on where you need to go to start creating your forms on the main navigation page. You’ll have to visit the Create button on the page, along with your emails and social posts instead.

Once you’ve found the solution for Mailchimp’s registration form, you can create a pop-up, embedded form, landing page, and other options. The fiddly process makes the whole experience a bit annoying for people who just want to get started fast.

Alternatively, the process with SendinBlue is a lot simpler.

You can allow your subscribers to select the lists that they want to opt into, which is excellent for ensuring that you’re getting the right content to the right customers. Additionally, the editor that comes with SendinBlue to help you build your forms is great fun to use too.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: CRM

Although Mailchimp claims that you can use its software as CRM solution for your digital marketing and sales strategy, the features available aren’t nearly rich enough for most companies. You can’t create tasks or assign contacts to particular agents in your team.

One benefit of Mailchimp is the social profiles feature, which allows you to create more targeted campaigns based on social media information, but that’s all you get. What’s more, this capability also costs extra money on top of your standard Mailchimp pricing.

MailChimp is pretty good at giving you ecommerce data, however, if you have your email account connected to your online store. There are also integrations available with Salesforce and other solutions.

Alternatively, SendinBlue stands out by offering a unique CRM solution within the email marketing software that you get. The CRM makes it easier to manage your contacts and lists. You’ll also be able to see additional information about your contacts based on the web pages that they have visited and so on. Unfortunately, even SendinBlue’s solution isn’t as comprehensive as some of the other legitimate CMS solutions available today.

 SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: Design and Spam Testing

When you’re building your email marketing or SMS marketing campaigns, it’s important to ensure that you’re not sending out a number of emails that your audience isn’t going to respond well to. Aside from testing in desktop and mobile options, Sendinblue and Mailchimp come with a range of spam and design testing features.

Mailchimp offers more email clients that you can test on than SendinBlue, but the experience isn’t free to use. You’ll only get 25 preview tokens that you can use every month with the Mailchimp monthly plans. This means that you’ll have to purchase additional tokens if you run out to ensure that you’re not losing your open rates.

Alternatively, SendinBlue doesn’t charge for the extra testing features. Unfortunately, there’s no spam testing available from either provider. The good news is that both SendinBlue and Mailchimp do offer additional reporting and analytics features to help you learn a little more about how your campaigns are performing online.

For instance, you can keep track of geolocation information, links clicked, bounces, clicks, unsubscribes, opens, and more. One downside is that Sendinblue is missing automation reports. You’ll also be able to track the conversions on your pages through Google analytics that integrates with both services.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: Integrations

Both SendinBlue and Mailchimp know that today’s customers want an email marketing system that works well with the other tools that they use. Fortunately, Mailchimp integrates with hundreds of tools, making it easier to connect with every tool that you might want – except for Shopify. On the other hand, SendinBlue doesn’t have quite as many integrations available, although you can get around that with the Zapier library.

When you’re choosing the best email software for your marketing campaign, you’ll need to go beyond figuring out how much HTML and CSS you need to know with each software solution, and think about the extra tools that you use each day. If you’re using WooCommerce, Google analytics, and Salesforce to improve your chances of sales, it makes sense to have an email system that works with those applications.

It’s also a good idea to ensure that your email marketing tools can integrate with your chosen CMS systems, from WordPress to Magento. If you’re using a landing page builder, rather than a full website, ensure that you can collect emails directly through your landing pages.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: Analytics and A/B Testing

To get the most out of any email marketing campaign, you need to be willing to constantly test and optimize your messaging strategy.

In today's highly competitive marketplace, it's not enough to just design a bunch of autoresponders and hope for the best. You'll need to track how every headline, subject line, and call to action button performs in your messaging strategy.

The good news is that tools like SendinBlue and Mailchimp help with this testing process, using A/B testing and analytics.

With SendinBlue, you can test your emails and autoresponders in a range of different ways, looking at everything from your email content to the time that you send your messages. Some of the higher-priced tiers for SendinBlue also offer machine learning functionality that allows you to automatically find the best time to send a message for each of the subscribers on your list.

Not only is A/B testing with SendinBlue great, but you also get a range of email reporting tools built into the software too, to help you access some more in-depth insights into how your campaigns are working to help you reach your goals.

On the “My Campaigns” tab, you'll be able to see a performance report for each of your campaigns, which includes details on things like clicks, opens, unsubscribes, and deliverability rates.

From an A/B testing perspective, Mailchimp also offers a variety of ways to test your campaigns. Within the cheaper pricing packages, you'll only have access to a handful of split-testing options. However, in the premium plan, you'll get access to up to 8 split testing variants at a time.

Just as your split tests on Mailchimp will show you which of your campaigns are performing the best, your analytics and reporting feature will help you to decide where you should be focusing most of your efforts.

Mailchimp gives you access to all of your marketing data in the same place. This includes information on growth, engagement, and revenue from your social ads, emails, and automation. You'll also be able to monitor your ROI performance with detailed revenue reports that provide insight into a complete path-to-purchase.

Mailchimp also features its own mobile app, so you can track the performance of each campaign in real-time, even when you're on the move.

🏅Verdict: Mailchimp is a little more advanced than SendinBlue when it comes to A/B testing and analytics – although you do need to pay for higher-tier packages to tap into the best features. Additionally, Mailchimp doesn't have the machine learning capabilities that SendinBlue can offer.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: User Experience

Even the best email marketing tools aren't much good if you hate spending any time using them.

Developers are beginning to focus more on usability when creating their email marketing tools. For instance, how easy is it for you to navigate the UI when you log into your email marketing account, and how intuitive does the email builder feel?

The good news is that the SendinBlue experience is very clean and straightforward. Although the initial homepage is quite packed with information, it doesn't seem particularly cluttered and overwhelming. There's plenty of white space to stop you from getting confused.

SendinBlue is excellent for beginners who don't want too much complexity when they start using their email software for the first time. From the homepage dashboard, you can find out what's going on with your contacts, how your emails are performing and more.

Another great thing about SendinBlue is how easy it is to add contacts to your list. Once you've confirmed that you're compliant with the CAN-SPAM act, all you need to do is upload a bulk CSV file to start building your contact strategy.

Once you have all your contacts loaded into your profile, you'll be able to segment them and send personalized messages to different groups.

Mailchimp also offers an awe-inspiring and straightforward email marketing experience. From the moment you log into your homepage, you'll find everything you need laid out in front of you, from the option to create a new template to essential contact management.

Just like with SendinBlue, it's also straightforward to manage your list from Mailchimp. Once again, you can implement contacts into your account using a bulk CSV file. Once you have everyone in your list on your profile, you'll also be able to separate your customers with segments, which helps you to send more personalized campaigns.

Mailchimp also offers the opportunity to develop your segments using conditional relationships. This means that you can contact each customer based on unique factors, like whether they've responded to your campaigns in the past or clicked on individual buttons.

Whether you’re collecting customers through landing pages, or building your website’s traffic, being able to track your results from each personalization or marketing effort is essential.

🏅Verdict: While both Mailchimp and SendinBlue are straightforward to use, SendinBlue might be slightly more intuitive for you if you're a beginner in the email marketing space. It just feels very seamless and straightforward. You don't need to struggle to find any of the details that you need.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: Customer Support

Even if you choose the best email marketing tool on the market, there's always a chance you're going to need some extra help from time to time. That's why it's so important to ensure that your email provider can offer some great support.

No SendinBlue review or Mailchimp comparison would be complete without an insight into the kind of support you get from your email client. Even if you’re only using a free plan, you should be able to get access to things like phone support and email guidance. However, not every software solution delivers when it comes to customer support.

Since SendinBlue and Mailchimp are so easy to use, you should be able to get by without any support most of the time. However, if you do need guidance for any reason, you can start by looking for it on the SendinBlue help center.

Here, you'll find everything you need to answer your own questions and overcome common challenges with the SendinBlue software. From here, you can also access customer support in the form of instant chat and email if you upgrade to an Enterprise-level package.

sendinblue help center

Mailchimp also reserves most of its support options for the people who are willing to pay extra for it. You'll need to upgrade to the Premium tier if you want to be treated like a VIP from the Mailchimp team. If you don't have that kind of cash, you'll be left to fend for yourself by checking out Mailchimp's tutorials and guides.

mailchimp help center

There's also an option to get in touch with a letter if you're stuck.

🏅Verdict: Neither Mailchimp nor SendinBlue are winning any awards with their customer service. Unless you're willing to pay more, your options will be quite limited.

SendinBlue vs. Mailchimp: Finishing Thoughts

So which email marketing tool should you choose?

SendinBlue or Mailchimp?

Both options have their strengths and weaknesses to consider. While Mailchimp is a very comprehensive email marketing tool, it's limited when it comes to things like a simple user interface and immersive A/B testing at lower tiers. On the other hand, SendinBlue is a very simple tool for beginners, but it doesn't have the same great automation options that you would get with Mailchimp.

Choose SendinBlue if you're looking for a generous free plan, excellent reporting, and ease of use. On the other hand, opt for Mailchimp if you're looking for advanced A/B testing at higher levels, excellent integrations, and a range of automation options.

There's no one-size-fits-all solution for the ultimate email marketing tool, but with free trials available for both Mailchimp and SendinBlue, you can always test out your options before you commit to anything.

Additionally, remember that it’s important to ensure that your email marketing tool works well with the software that you’re already using.

An email marketing service that integrates with tools like Drupal, Mandrill, ActiveCampaign, and Salesforce will give business owners more of a complete view of their marketing campaigns. The more you can see how your digital strategy is working, the easier it is to optimize your website and landing pages for success.

Featured image credits: Shutterstock

Bogdan Rancea

Bogdan is a founding member of Inspired Mag, having accumulated almost 6 years of experience over this period. In his spare time he likes to study classical music and explore visual arts. He’s quite obsessed with fixies as well. He owns 5 already.