Headline article image The ultimate guide to the best email marketing platforms

The ultimate guide to the best email marketing platforms

Unsure which email marketing platform is best? We’ve got you covered.

Email platforms have come a long way in the past few decades.

Consider the last time you signed up for a brand’s newsletter - you were probably sent a beautiful, personalized welcome email, right?

Maybe you clicked on a product in the email but forgot to finish the purchase. Maybe you subsequently received a friendly email reminding you that you’d left something in your cart. Perhaps you bought it - only to receive another email the following week featuring a great deal on a similar product.

You’re left thinking, “How do they do ALL that?! 

Easy – with an email marketing platform. But not just any email marketing platform will do, and you will want to do your research to find the best email marketing platform for your business.

The best email marketing platforms – or email service platforms (ESPs) – are designed to deliver the very best results from your email marketing campaigns while simultaneously making it as easy as possible. The features, functions and possibilities are endless – the trick is choosing the right one for you.

Key considerations when deciding the best email marketing platform for you:

  • Cost

    Be realistic about what you can afford – or want to spend. There are several great free plans available for you to test the waters and see what works best.

  • Ease of Use

    Do you have an email marketing team or are you just starting out? Pick a tool that aligns with the current skills and capabilities of your team because there’s no point in paying for fancy features if you can’t use them yet.

  • List management/size

    On some platforms, you pay more for the size of your contacts list. Do you plan to build your email list? Understand your list management requirements before you pick a platform.  

  • Templates

    Do you have a designer on staff? If not, the best email marketing platform for you will be one that has great pre-designed templates with easy-to-use design tools.

  • Integrations

    Does it integrate with your store platform or existing business and marketing tools? Clever integrations can not only save you time and make your team’s life easier, but also deliver advanced insights to develop more effective strategies.

  • Recommended use

    What are you trying to achieve? Compare your goals, marketing channels, and the size and purpose of your business to the functionalities and purpose of the platform. 

Now that you know what to look for, we’ve rounded up nine popular platforms to help pick the best email marketing platform for you.

Campaign Monitor

Cost: Approximately US$9 per month (basic), US$29 per month (unlimited), US$149 per month (premier). 

Campaign Monitor doesn’t offer a free plan; however you can pay annually rather than monthly, or pay per campaign.

Top feature Easy drag-and-drop design tools. 

Best email marketing platform for Teams wanting to create personalized emails with pre-designed responsive templates.  

What it is Campaign Monitor is one of the best email marketing platforms out there as an easy-to-use email service provider with all the standard features – template creation, list management, segmentation, analytics, A/B testing – with a focus on personalization.

Best features The platform is designed for teams collaborating on email campaigns, with tagging and role-assignment functions, and the ability to integrate with 250+ third-party applications (including team collaboration tools such as Microsoft Teams).

It offers 80 pre-designed layouts and templates, with easy drag-and-drop design tools. The templates are all responsive and optimized for mobile, and they also offer a preview option for 20+ different inbox views.  

A key function for Campaign Monitor is personalization and meeting customers at a specific point in the journey. The visual marketing automation tool is great for mapping flows, identifying customer segments, and building targeted and automated email workflows.

“What I like most about Campaign Monitor is that we can send really targeted emails to our customers,” said Brendan Downs, global webmaster at Rip Curl. “Girl-specific content, or guy-specific content – or we can even get more macro, [and drill] down to language and location.”

Using their analytics and data, you can heavily segment and create a range of personalized content based on available information – such as age, location, purchase history, point of purchase, etc. There’s also an extensive library of resources available.   


Cost Free up to 500 emails per month, approximately US$16 per month (standard), US$59 per month (pro).

Omnisend’s plans are restricted by the number of contacts you have; however they all include international SMS, with the “pro” plan allowing unlimited emails and up to 3,540 international SMS to up to 500 contacts.

Top feature Automations and segmentations across channels.

Best email marketing platform for Omni-channel workflows that integrate email, SMS, push notifications, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and more.

What it is Omnisend is an all-in-one marketing automation platform designed for e-commerce businesses. Focused on helping you reach customers throughout their journey, using different channels, it enables you to integrate email, SMS, push notifications, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and more into your workflows. 

Best features As one of the best email marketing platforms for segmentation, Omnisend allows segmented targeting across all your integrated channels. For example, some customers may not respond regularly to email communication, but they may to SMS. Omnisend allows you to create customized communication workflows to personalize the experience and communicate with your customers in a way that works for them.

As well as offering customizable pre-designed email templates with e-commerce features such as the ability to include dynamic discount codes, the platform also offers pop-up and lead generation form templates. The automations library includes pre-built consumer journey workflows, with welcome, abandoned cart and transaction templates – enabling users to get started quickly. 

As Omnisend is heavily focused on e-commerce, their reports and analytics track sales to identify which campaigns convert so that you can build winning success strategies. 


Cost Free up to 300 emails per day, US$25 per month for up to 10,000 emails (lite), US$65 per month for up to 20,000 emails (premium).

For anything beyond that, they offer an “Enterprise” plan with additional features on a quote basis.

Top feature Automation capabilities and built-in CRM 

Best email marketing platform for Small- to medium-sized businesses needing a quick and easy marketing solution. 

What it is Sendinblue is an easy and intuitive all-in-one marketing and communication platform that includes email, SMS, Facebook, chat and CRM functionality. It focuses on helping you meet customers where they are, across platforms, with the goal of operating on “autopilot” with clever and extensive automation.

Best features Sendinblue is one of the best email marketing platforms for it's skill in making automation “beginner-friendly” with pre-designed workflows, pre-made automation templates, and 60+ email templates.

Similarly, the platform simplifies lead generation with their lead forms tools that you can use to segment leads into lists and create targeted workflows for – and Facebook retargeting features.

Sendinblue also has a built-in CRM and a shared inbox to keep track of customer email history, which enables smart segmentation and automation functions, including using AI algorithms to select the best delivery time for bulk emails and A/B testing. 

The drag-and-drop email editor function, along with a range of tools for creating emails, is easy to use; however it’s worth noting that the emails on the free plan will have Sendinblue branding.


Cost Free up to 100 contacts, paid plans start at US$15 per month and increase based on contact list size.

Top feature Conversion tools – pop-ups, flyouts, coupons, spin-to-win wheels.

Best email marketing platform for Small e-commerce businesses focused on lead generation.

What it is Privy is an SMS and email marketing platform that’s one of the best email marketing platforms for e-commerce store platforms, as it focuses on converting and growing sales through your email marketing. 

Best features It is designed for generating online store leads and conversions with a range of targeting functions, unique features to run cross-sell emails and extensive automation capabilities. 

Automation options are designed specifically for e-commerce store needs – including automated newsletters, reminders, abandoned cart flows, purchase follow-ups and customer reactivation emails, as well as campaigns based on exit intent, cart value and behavior.

With Privy you can create a range of intent-driven pop-ups and banners, including spin-to-win wheels. They offer unlimited segmentation and run automated A/B testing to find which messages convert, for both email and SMS. 


Cost Free up to 2,000 contacts; paid plans from US$9.99 per month based on your contact list size.

Top feature 300+ third-party integrations.

Best email marketing platform for Beginners that need a good “freemium” plan.

What it is Mailchimp is one of the most well-known email marketing platforms, with all the features you need: templates, segmentation, automation, personalization, A/B testing, lead-generation forms and CRM integration. It’s easy to learn and even easier to get started with the extensive free plan.

Mailchimp also offers functions that enable you to build websites and landing pages, buy domains, create ads and post on social media, but email marketing is their bread and butter.

Best features Mailchimp has more than 100 flexible email templates available that you can customize in their easy drag-and-drop email builder. They also have custom landing page creation tools.

One of the benefits of Mailchimp is that you leverage their extensive learning. The company collects data from customers worldwide to provide predictive and actionable insights that you can use to design personalized customer journeys. And it offers smart audience management tools that allow you to set segmentation and autoresponder parameters with ready-made segments, as well as set up delivery times based on the user's time zone.

Mailchimp accommodates businesses of all sizes, from start-up to enterprise, and has over 300 third-party application integrations – including WordPress, Magento, Shopify and other e-commerce stores – enabling you to integrate tools to suit your business needs.

Keep in mind that the free plan does restrict what features are available to you, such as advanced segmentation and send-time optimization. 


Cost Free up to 250 contacts; paid plans start at US$20 per month based on the size of your contact list.

Top feature Ability to send personalized product recommendations and dynamic content. 

Best email marketing platform for E-commerce businesses.

What it is Klaviyo is an SMS and email marketing service designed specifically for e-commerce businesses. It has specifically designed functions and features to help e-commerce stores generate sales alongside all the standard email marketing tools – segmentation, automation, A/B testing, sign-up forms, analytics, etc. 

Best features Klaviyo has 120+ third-party integrations, including ShipStation and popular e-commerce store platforms. In particular, it integrates with social media platforms to support paid social media campaigns, which allows you to sync data to build “lookalike audiences” for Facebook and Instagram for lead generation. It also offers dynamic lead generation forms that you can A/B test to optimize and improve conversions.

Klaviyo has pre-designed forms, and over 50 email and automation templates, as well as “saved templates” that give you pre-built layouts with your company’s logo included. Alternatively, you can create your own emails using their drag-and-drop design tool or plain-text editor. 

The platform also gives you the ability to send personalized product recommendations and dynamic content based on a consumer’s preferences and interactions. 

Reports and analytics are focused on business growth, sales, generating leads and converting. Klaviyo offers the same features for both free and paid plans, the only difference being the customer support that comes with a paid plan.


Cost 14-day free trial, plans start at approximately US$19 per month and increase based on the size of your contact list.

Top feature Advanced e-commerce CRM. 

Best email marketing platform for More advanced e-commerce marketers wanting to further their automation and segmentation strategy.

What it it Drip is an advanced SMS and email marketing platform designed for small-to-medium e-commerce businesses, integrating seamlessly with e-commerce platforms like Shopify and Magento. Its e-commerce CRM allows for advanced personalization and segmentation, as well as offering revenue attribution and sales funnel tools. 

Best features The Drip e-commerce CRM enables you to learn more about your customers and build deeper – and more profitable – relationships through more segmented and personalized workflows and campaigns. It has a focus on customer acquisition, with customizable lead generation forms, and an understanding of purchase behavior so you can nurture customers.

Drip offers intuitive and advanced automation tools, with clever segmenting, split testing and list grouping abilities. You can segment based on a wide range of criteria – clicks, purchase history, engagements, relevant promotions, first-time users, returning visitors, abandoned cart – and A/B test to find what works best.

The platform has a visual workflow builder to help you create customized journeys and find purchase points, with a library of existing workflows and proven strategies you can try for yourself.

After connecting your e-commerce platform, you can also activate revenue attribution to see which campaigns are actually converting to dollars and driving sales. Drip also integrates with a range of other third-parties, including Facebook.


Cost Free up to 1,000 subscribers and 12,000 emails per month, paid plans start at US$10 per month and increase based on the size of your contact list.

Top feature Award-winning 24/7 support. 

Best email marketing platform for E-commerce businesses new to email marketing with a small budget.

What it is MailerLite is a user-friendly email marketing platform focused on helping small-to-medium businesses grow with all the functionality needed for successful email marketing, including advanced automation and segmentation, promotional pop-ups and the ability to build landing pages.

Best features MailerLite has a clean, easy-to-use interface and award-winning 24/7 support.

It integrates with dozens of marketing tools and e-commerce platforms, enabling automatic customer segmentation based on the e-commerce platform data – such as first-time customers, high-spending customers, etc. It offers the ability to track revenue and evaluate how emails impact sales, as well as monetizing newsletters and selling digital products. 

The platform offers advanced tools to generate leads, attract visitors and turn them into subscribers using landing pages, pop-ups and embedded forms. You can also personalize campaigns using its advanced targeting features.

And you can also choose between a drag-and-drop template editor, rich-text editor or custom HTML editor, and test campaigns in multiple ways to find what works. (MailerLite also has a template gallery on its website, so you can get a feel for the themes before signing up. 


Cost Free up to 1,000 subscribers, approximately US$9 per month (creator), US$29 per month (creator pro).

Top feature Incentive emails for content upgrades.

Best email marketing platform for Creators and e-commerce businesses wanting to drive engagement.

What it is  ConvertKit is an email marketing platform particularly aimed at creators – artists, musicians, authors, podcasters, coaches, entrepreneurs – and e-commerce businesses.

Best features It is feature-rich with landing page and opt-in form functions, email workflows, automation, personalization, tagging and segmentation, as well as intuitive design capabilities.

The focus is on automating your sales funnel by sending subscribers engaging content. In particular, the “incentive email” feature enables you to offer content upgrades and special incentives. There are also special features for selling digital products – such as podcasts and videos – and a paid newsletter and subscription functionality, with a referral template. 

CovertKit makes automation and segmentation easy with a visual automation builder that you can use to create advanced email rules, triggers and automated email funnels that convert visitors to purchasers. You can also create custom emails for individual subscribers, with funnel-driving landing pages.

The platform also integrates with dozens of third-party applications, including e-commerce store and social media platforms, marketing tools, and payment methods.

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Written by
Lizzie Mulherin
Lizzie Mulherin is a content marketer and copywriter.
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