How do MailChimp and ActiveCampaign compare

We have been testing and comparing website construction kits for over five years, enabling our visitors to set up websites and online shops professionally and still cheaply.

But what about newsletter tools - are there any useful newsletter programs that you can use in the do-it-yourself process?

E-mail marketing is a very important means of getting in regular contact with prospects, visitors and thus potential customers. Therefore, in this blog article, we illuminate the topic of newsletter software in great detail in order to make it easier for you to decide on a newsletter tool.

There's more to it than just social media

Nowadays, anyone who hears about online marketing usually thinks directly of social media such as Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. And of course these platforms are a great way to build an online identity for your brand and make your products or services better known.

Still, it's not necessarily the best way to get people to buy. A clear boom in email marketing can also be seen in comparison to print advertising, i.e. direct mail, as this Google Trends Graph shows:

(Source: Google Trends)

Email Marketing? Isn't that totally out of date?

Maybe email marketing doesn't sound as sexy and hip as social media. Even so, there are a few good reasons for this:

  • Longevity: Social media platforms can change and become irrelevant to you or your target group. Do you remember MySpace? And are Google+ or Twitter still as important as they were a few years ago? Email is and will remain the best way to connect - and stay in touch.
  • Information control: On Facebook you have no way of getting full access to your customers' data and information. Also, Mark Zuckerberg's company is constantly developing new ways to make you pay for advertising.
  • Flexibility: Once you have your list of e-mail addresses, you can easily fall back on different providers of newsletter tools.
  • Easy to use: you can easily integrate newsletter registration forms into most website builders and content management systems. Some even offer special apps for this.

As you can see: The subject of newsletters and email marketing is worth more than a second look. The providers we're taking a look at today are all intended for self-users and are really easy to use - many of them even free of charge or at least with free trial periods.

Before we introduce you to the individual newsletter tools, here is a quick little cheat sheet with important newsletter functions:

Autoresponder: A set series of emails that you automatically receive, e.g. after entering into a registration form. For example, this could be tips on the product or an introduction to a specific topic. E-mail automation goes one step further, where complete dispatch processes can be planned.

Template: A template for a newsletter with images and text formatting that is sent in HTML format.

Responsive newsletter: Just like a website, the e-mail adapts to the size of the device (smartphone, tablet, desktop) and optimizes the display.

Bounces: If an email address no longer exists, this generates a return. These so-called bounces are automatically set to inactive by the newsletter software.

Prepaid vs. subscription tariff: Prepaid works in a similar way to mobile phone tariffs, you load a certain number of e-mails into your account and can then send them. With subscription tariffs, on the other hand, you pay per recipient and often receive unlimited e-mails. This is especially worthwhile if you write to the same recipient several times a month.


So, now we can start with our large comparison of the various newsletter tools!

Email Marketing Software: These Are The Best Suppliers

Sendinblue (formerly Newsletter2Go) - automation and, and, and ...

General description: Launched in 2012, SendInBlue has in the past mainly focused on transactional emails (registration confirmations, invoices, etc.). In the meantime, the French are now also sending their own newsletter editor into the race, which is supposed to make the software attractive for “normal” senders as well. A noble goal, but more than 30 million daily e-mails and SMS sent to 140 countries speak for themselves. German is also available among the six languages ​​in which the website can be viewed.

Look at the prices:

The prices are based on the emails sent per month.

Up to 9,000 e-mails: free of charge (limited functions with 300 e-mails daily limit)

Up to 10,000 emails: 19 € per month

Up to 20,000,000 emails: 29 € per month

Up to 40,000 emails: € 39 per month

Video test report (English):

What we like: Simple, reliable, inexpensive with a free tariff. Good reporting and list maintenance. The automation features are pretty strong too, and you can even create landing pages. German support with hosting in Germany.

What should be improved: A provider logo is built into the cheapest lite tariff. To remove this, there is an extra € 9 / month. In the free version, the number of emails sent per day is limited to 300.

Recommended for: Especially for everyone who doesn't just want extensive functions. If you have a lot of contacts that you write to irregularly, you benefit from billing per e-mail - you can load unlimited contacts into the CRM.

Try Sendinblue for free

Detailed test report (EmailToolTester)


CleverReach - the top dog in Germany

General description: With more than 190,000 customers worldwide, CleverReach is the leading provider in the German DIY newsletter tools segment. 250 recipients and 1,000 e-mails per month are free of charge, there is no setup fee or contractual obligation. In addition, CleverReach offers e-mail automation functions that go far beyond autoresponders; real professional functions that are not common for newsletter software in this price range.

Look at the prices:

Up to 1,000 e-mails / month: € 25.95 (€ 20 * in the subscription package as a flat rate)

Up to 5,000 e-mails / month: € 64.95 (€ 55 * in the subscription package as a flat rate)

Up to 10,000 e-mails / month: one-time € 109, (€ 100 * in the subscription package as a flat rate)

* Prices without premium support option

Video test report:

What we like: Comfortable editor for creating newsletters and for registration forms, solid template system, autoresponder, free tariff for up to 250 recipients.

What should be improved: There is e-mail automation, but this is currently still quite limited - especially when compared to the US competition. In addition, for the Premium support proud 22.95 € / month is charged.

Recommended for: Everyone who wants to use the latest features, finds German support important, but would also like to pay a little more for it.

Try CleverReach for free

Detailed test report (EmailToolTester)


GetResponse: We can do everything - except standard German

General description: GetResponse advertises with clear figures: 350,000 customers in 182 countries who write to over 1 billion contacts a month. Two functions in particular stand out here that no other newsletter software has in its program: a landing page editor and a function for creating webinars. In addition, GetResponse also offers excellent functions for e-mail automation, which for example also includes a tagging function. The free access to over 1,000 iStock images is practical.

Look at the prices:

Up to 1,000 recipients: € 12 per month

Up to 5,000 recipients: € 35 per month

Up to 10,000 recipients: € 50 per month

(Prices refer to the “E-Mail” tariff - different tariff levels are available)

Video test report:

What we like: Easy creation of landing pages, great automation mechanisms, responsive design and a webinar function for the Pro tariff (up to 5,000 mails).

What should be improved: In some cases, the bad or faulty German translation makes it a bit difficult to use, and the German support is not particularly fast.

Recommended for: Everyone who is looking for a versatile newsletter tool that offers the latest functions and ideally not bothered to switch the software to English.

Try GetResponse for free (10% discount for life via this link!)

Detailed test report (EmailToolTester)


Rapidmail - Simplicity is a virtue

General description: An inexpensive and easy-to-use tool for small mail order companies who don't want to be distracted by too many options. Select, edit, send, this is how Rapidmail advertises on its homepage, and this is exactly how the newsletter tool works. Some templates, which mainly cover seasonal purposes, are available and also responsive. In some areas, such as segmentation, the newsletter tool is a bit cumbersome, but at the same time there are some restrictions that you have to live with. However, the low price makes up for it.

Look at the prices:

Up to 1,000 emails: € 10

Up to 5,000 emails: € 25

Up to 10,000 emails: € 50

No monthly basic fee, billing according to mailing.

Video test report:

What we like: Clear interface, fast editor, quick familiarization. A / B tests are available. The e-mail support is fast and competent. A simple tool with comparatively low prices and server location in Germany.

What should be improved: Unfortunately, there is no autoresponder. For small senders, the minimum amount of € 10 also applies if the 2,000 emails contained therein are not reached.

Recommended for: Everyone who wants an inexpensive, easy-to-use newsletter tool with no frills.

Try Rapidmail for free

Detailed test report (EmailToolTester)


Active Campaign - The e-mail automation professionals

General description:ActiveCampaign describes itself as an “all-in-one marketing platform” and above all wants to ensure that fewer e-mails are sent with significantly better results. The focus here is clearly on email automation. None of the tools we tested can hold a candle to the Chicago company in this area. In this way, even the surfing behavior of your website visitors can be included in the automation. Anyone who would like to control their sales via the newsletter tool will be happy about the integrated CRM system.

Look at the prices:

Up to 1,000 emails / month: $ 17 monthly

Up to 5,000 emails / month: $ 69 monthly

Up to 10,000 emails / month: $ 111 monthly

Prices with annual billing

Video test report (English):

What we like: User-friendly design, combined with modern and responsive templates and fantastic marketing automation at fair prices. Support is available via email and live chat.

What should be improved: Unfortunately no German support. In addition, the newsletter editor unfortunately does not have a preview mode, which makes testing a little more time-consuming.

Recommended for: Everyone who needs professional functions and for whom email marketing is a central sales channel. Of course, English shouldn't be a hurdle.

Try ActiveCampaign for free

Detailed test report (EmailToolTester)


Mailchimp - the top dog in the USA

General description: With a monkey representing the brand, one of the world's leading email marketing tools is revealed. What immediately catches the eye: Up to 2,000 subscribers can receive a total of 10,000 e-mails per month - free of charge. Small catch: the so-called Forever Free tariff automatically puts a small advertising banner in the footer. Those who are bothered by this can opt for subscription or prepaid tariffs, which also offer extended functions such as autoresponder campaigns.

Look at the prices:

Up to 2,000 recipients: free of charge (max. 10,000 e-mails and advertising banners)

Up to 5,000 recipients: $ 50 per month

Up to 10,000 recipients: $ 75 per month

Prepaid tariffs are also available

Video test report (English)

What we like:
Always new functions, high social media functionality, high customization options for templates and even forms.

What should be improved: The interface is only available in English - anyone who is not used to the technical terminology could find it difficult here. If you exceed the free tariff, the costs go up steeply. Since you pay in USD, you are unfortunately always dependent on the current exchange rates. Mailchimp will also look in vain for the Certified Senders Alliance (CSA) certification that is common in Germany: deliverability can suffer as a result. Another drawback: as with all US tools, the recipient data is stored in the USA, which is not optimal for data protection reasons.

Recommended for: Anyone looking for a solid free plan and an easy-to-use tool that is also happy to be available in English only.

Try Mailchimp for free

Detailed test report (EmailToolTester)


Klick-Tipp - the specialist for "tagging"

General description: Klick-Tipp is primarily aimed at online marketers who earn their money on the Internet. Be it with online shops or information products. Accordingly, the self-marketing is sometimes very peppered with superlatives. If that doesn't bother you, you will find a surprisingly solid tool in Klick-Tipp, which has some strengths, especially when it comes to automation.

The so-called tagging is the core function. This can be understood as a label that can be dynamically assigned to recipients. And even automated - for example, you can automatically assign a day to a website visitor when surfing a certain page and carry out further automation based on this information.

Look at the prices:

Standard: up to 10,000 recipients: € 27

Premium: Up to 10,000 recipients: € 25

Deluxe: Up to 10,000 recipients: 50 €

Enterprise: Up to 1,000,000 recipients

The packages contain different features such as split testing and an API interface.

In addition, the tariffs are billed monthly and can also be canceled at the end of each month.

Video test report:

What we like: the automation functions are very powerful - the Marketing Cockpit can be used to set up very sophisticated campaigns.

What should be improved: unfortunately there is no template editor. The newsletters are always text-based unless you can create your own HTML code. A free test would also be desirable - currently there is only a money-back guarantee. The menus are sometimes a bit overloaded and should be streamlined.

Recommended for: People who earn their money on the Internet and are looking for clever automation functions.

Try the click tip

Detailed test report (EmailToolTester)


MailerLite - design that inspires

General description: Quite new to the world of email marketing, employees with an average age of 25, based in Vilnius, Lithuania - MailerLite stands out from the rest of the competition. This modern, clean, and simple approach works. In addition, MailerLite is really international and offers its user interface in 7 languages ​​(but no German), support in almost as many. But despite all its simplicity, this newsletter tool offers many options, a simple and fast editor and an inexpensive "Free Forever" plan. To be too good to be true? Not really.

Look at the prices:

Up to 1,000 recipients, unlimited emails: free of charge

Up to 5,000 recipients, unlimited emails: € 26 per month

Up to 10,000 recipients, unlimited emails: € 44 per month

30% savings when paying annually.

Video test report (English):

What we like: Easy to use, logical structure, clean interface and fast editor. Beautiful and flexible templates with the most important functions.

What should be improved: a German user interface and maybe a few better statistics features.

Recommended for: Anyone who is a small company looking for inexpensive newsletter software that still includes all the important features. Unfortunately, you have to be able to do without a German interface.

Try MailerLite for free

Detailed test report (EmailToolTester)


Mailify: can also be used without the cloud

General description: While this provider is already one of the big ones in France, Mailify is hardly known in this country. As with Sendinblue, you pay per email sent. The basic tariffs Essential, Premium and Exclusive set very high at 69 € when you compare the prices with the competition.

There is a big difference between Mailify and the rest of the providers: You can also use Mailify without uploading the recipient data to the cloud. If you switch off the cloud function, the shipping data will remain on your local computer. Practical if, for example, your company policy prohibits the storage of data in the cloud.

Look at the prices:

The prices are based on the emails sent per month.

Up to 5,000 emails: € 69 per month

Up to 10,000 emails: € 99 per month

Up to 25,000 emails: € 139 per month

Video test report

What we like: the large selection of well-designed, responsive templates. Data can also be saved locally. The support reacts very quickly.

What should be improved: functionally absent and things like advanced automations. Segmentation is not quite as intuitive here as with the competition. In addition, the prices are very high.

Try Mailify for 30 days for free


Clever Elements - Interesting for resellers and agencies

General description: E-mail marketing for the best, 13 years of experience, on a par with the leading e-mail marketing platforms for worldwide professional use - these are just some of the keywords that Clever Elements uses to advertise on its homepage. Well-known customers impress immediately, a chat window pops up after a few seconds and offers help in direct dialogue. All in all a professional impression - does Clever Elements keep what it promises as a provider of newsletter software?

Look at the prices:

Up to 1,000 recipients, unlimited emails: € 10 per month

Up to 5,000 recipients, unlimited emails: € 35 per month

Up to 10,000 recipients, unlimited emails: € 50 per month

Prepaid tariffs are also available


CleverElements templates
CleverElements Editor
CleverElements dashboard


What we like: Sensibly structured and easy to understand thanks to the modular system, therefore easy to use. Server location Germany. Offers a white label program.

What should be improved: The rather stripped-down and not really innovative functions fit neither with the grand entrance nor with the price segment. The editor looks a bit old and there is no autoresponder.

Recommended for: mainly white label partners who depend on good support.

Detailed test report (EmailToolTester)


Further providers of newsletter tools:

We would like to briefly introduce the following five providers of newsletter tools at this point: Mailjet, ConvertKit, Drip, Aweber and Constant Contact.

Mailjet - French transactional emails, the second.

General: Mailjet also presents itself as an all-in-one email service provider and is not unlike the aforementioned Sendinblue. Not only is the company headquartered in France, but also originally transactional e-mail was the focus. A regular template editor was recently added.

Prices: Is the price system particularly sophisticated or rather confusing? In general, the prices are based on the amount of emails sent per month. For every package - from bronze to crystal in standard mode to silver, gold, platinum and diamond in expert mode - there is always the option of adding special premium functions. Choosing the right one from these offers can be a challenge. The premium trial subscription for 6,000 e-mails per month, with 200 e-mails per day, is free for 30 days. As a special feature, Mailjet supports all non-profit organizations with a discount of 20%.

The premium functions that can be booked include segmentation, A / X testing (up to 10 combinations), campaign comparison and email automation.

Try Mailjet for free


ConvertKit - Made for bloggers with a budget

General: E-mail marketing for professional bloggers, this is how the company presents itself on its English-language website. On the pricing page, you can use a nice regulator to set how many subscribers you have and immediately see the (rather hefty) monthly fee. At this point, however, you don't even know what ConvertKit offers in detail. The promise is 'unlimited everything', from forms to landing pages to automation, but what exactly is behind it ... maybe the demo video will help. However, you have to request this and provide your name, email address, the number of subscribers and your website.

Prices: 1000 subscribers (with apparently unlimited emails) are available for $ 29 per month, 5,000 subscribers for $ 79 per month, 10,000 for $ 119 per month. Payment is made immediately after opening the account, there is a 30-day right of return.

Try ConvertKit for free

Detailed test report (EmailToolTester)


Drip - Lightweight Marketing Automation

General: Professional marketing automation for beginners - fully networked from the Facebook group to webinars to the free video course, the user can get to know and apply all the details here (provided he is able to speak English). This is about more than simple newsletters; the entire email marketing package is put together here, from lead automation to nurturing emails to targeted emails. All functions are already included in the free starter version. Incidentally, Drip is part of the LeadPages landing page tool, which one or the other might know.

Prices: 100 subscribers to unlimited emails per month are free if you register with Drip. 2,500 subscribers cost $ 41 a month, 5,000 subscribers cost $ 83 a month, and both plans come with a free trial period. If you have more than 5,000 subscribers, you have to write or call the sales department. The following promise is interesting: “Drip will help you to expand your recipient list and increase conversions. If not, you will get your last monthly amount back. "

Try Drip for free


AWeber - the newsletter saurus

General: Also an American company that has been on the market for a long time. Professional newsletters with successful e-mail marketing tools can - according to the provider - be created with Aweber, and very easily with the drag-and-drop editor. Unfortunately, our own experience shows that the newsletter editor is getting on in years. Fortunately, the basic functions are all there, but from our point of view there is no compelling reason to pay the relatively high price.

Prices: The promise is less than a couple of café lattes a month. Specifically, that means $ 19 for 500 subscribers (unlimited emails), $ 49 for up to 5,000 subscribers or $ 69 for 10,000 subscribers. All features are always included, so the pricing scheme is very clear and easy to understand. However, you have to do without a lot of coffee.

Try AWeber for free


Constant Contact - Another e-mail veteran

General: Professional emails that bring customers into your store with a newsletter tool that is as powerful as it is simple, that's the Constant Contact promise. Unfortunately, we had to struggle with the poor support in practice, which not only seemed slow but also sometimes incompetent.

Constant Contact is even more expensive than AWeber with roughly comparably weak features.

Prices: The free trial version for 60 days immediately catches the eye. Full access to all e-mail marketing tools, expert help and online resources let you test Constant Contact extensively. If you're satisfied, it's $ 20 for 500 subscribers (unlimited emails), $ 60 for 5,000 subscribers, and $ 90 for 10,000 subscribers, each with prepayment discounts (10% for six months, 15% for 12 months). There are special prices for nonprofits, franchises and subcontractors.

Try Constant Contact for free



In summary, we noticed that the price differences between the individual newsletter tools are considerable, but do not always reflect the quality. Sendinblue offers a good balance between price and performance. If you want to save money and don't mind an English-language newsletter software, you should take a look at Mailerlite.

CleverReach costs a little more, but is the only German provider to already offer email automation with a workflow view.

If you expand your search internationally, you can hardly get past ActiveCampaign. No other newsletter software masters e-mail automation better - it's a shame that there is no support in German.



01.03.2021 - Updated KlickTipp test report
05/17/2020 - Newsletter2Go is now part of Sendinblue.
05/22/2019 - Change at Mailchimp: only 10,000 free e-mails (instead of 12,000) in the free tariff.
04/18/2019 - ActiveCampaign now also offers a German user interface.
07.03.2019 - Price increase at Mailify.
04/01/2019 - Mailerlite price increase taken into account.
December 17, 2018 - New video for GetResponse.
09/10/2018 - Smaller updates at SendInBlue.
08/29/2018 - Some price updates
08/24/2018 - Updates to Mailify
07/18/2017 - Click tip added to the list of providers.