If your company is looking for an email marketing tool, then you have likely heard of SendGrid and Mailchimp.
As two of the most popular and effective email marketing software solutions on the market, SendGrid (sometimes referred to as Twilio SendGrid) and Mailchimp often compete head-to-head to win the business of companies like yours.
While both tools offer top-of-field feature sets that can improve your marketing emails dramatically, identifying which is right for you can take time and effort.
We are here to help. In this article, we will examine SendGrid and Mailchimp, compare their features and pricing, and detail the other considerations that can help you make the right choice for your business.
What is SendGrid?
SendGrid is an email marketing tool with a keen focus on email deliverability.
For more than 10 years, SendGrid has been setting the standard for email marketing campaign success with open and click rates that are second to none.
In 2018, Twilio acquired SendGrid to create Twilio SendGrid, and the partnership has resulted in new features that support text messaging as well as voice and video calling.
What is Mailchimp?
Mailchimp is a robust email marketing platform that helps companies manage and assess their email marketing campaigns.
Over the past 20 years, Mailchimp has evolved from a passion project by its founders — Ben Chestnut and Dan Kurzius — into the world’s most-used email marketing solution.
In recent years Mailchimp has been expanding its toolset to include advanced automation features, analytics and reporting features, and social media support.
SendGrid vs. Mailchimp: Feature Comparison
SendGrid and Mailchimp take very different approaches to the development of their tools and features.
SendGrid is a specialist with tools that improve email deliverability, analysis, and legal compliance.
Mailchimp offers a little bit of everything, developing tools that support a wide array of digital marketing activities.
While this can make a side-by-side comparison hard to evaluate, digging into a few key features can help you uncover the differentiators that may make the difference for your business.
Automation tools can help you improve your email cadences through timely and targeted messaging.
- SendGrid- SendGrid’s email automations can be triggered whenever a contact is added to a list or a segment. This allows you to create nurture cadences that support leads throughout your sales funnel.
- Mailchimp- Mailchimp’s advanced email automation features allow you to map out the entire customer journey, using triggers that can be set by stage, response, or logic (if/else statements) to create a workflow based on proven methods and best practices.
Additionally, Mailchimp’s automation tools extend beyond email to support your social media (Instagram and Facebook) campaigns and ads.
Winner — Mailchimp comes out on top in the battle of automation features. Their flexible and dynamic trigger set supports a greater variety of workflows and cadences.
Email marketing success is achieved through constant refinement. Analytics and reporting tools are essential for identifying what is working and what isn’t so that you can make strategic pivots based on data and insight.
- SendGrid- With SendGrid, you can track open, click, and unsubscribe rates by campaign, region, or custom category.
What’s more, SendGrid tracks your IP reputation score, providing insights that can help you increase deliverability and improve your sender reputation.
- Mailchimp- Mailchimp tracks your open rates, click rates, and unsubscribe rates so you can see how well your campaigns are performing.
Plus, with higher tier plans, you can track revenue accrued through purchases associated with your campaigns, allowing you to measure the ROI of these campaigns more accurately.
Winner — SendGrid takes this one. Even in their lowest tier plans, you gain access to the most comprehensive reporting tools available for email campaign tracking.
No matter how good a software tool is, it can’t do everything on its own. Integration is an essential component of any tool in your tech stack.
- SendGrid- SendGrid’s list of native integrations covers the spectrum of software tools you will need to interact with for your email marketing campaigns.
Plus, through Zapier, you can connect SendGrid with thousands of the world’s most popular business apps.
- Mailchimp- Mailchimp offers hundreds of native integrations with software applications for e-commerce, POS (point of sale), social media, work management, and more.
You can also access Mailchimp’s API to build your own integrations for software tools that they don’t support natively.
Winner — Mailchimp wins by a hair. The sheer volume of Mailchimp’s native integrations, coupled with their API, gives them the edge in the integration department.
The true measure of email marketing success is deliverability. Email marketing is a numbers game in which every shot counts and even a fraction of a percentage can make a difference.
- SendGrid- One of SendGrid’s primary value propositions is their exceptionally high email deliverability rates. With results consistently above 90%, it is not uncommon for SendGrid users to achieve scores of 97% and above.
SendGrid also employs the industry’s largest team of email deliverability experts, who can provide guidance and support for increasing engagement.
- Mailchimp- Mailchimp’s email deliverability rates tend to rank around the industry average (about 85%) year over year, with high marks in the low 90% range and lows just above 80%.
Winner — SendGrid likely beats every competitor on the market in this category, which is a key factor in their rapid growth and success.
When evaluating the cost of any software tool, you have to look beyond the price tag. ROI comes down to getting the most out of the features available, so payment structures that are scaleable and flexible are a must.
- SendGrid- SendGrid pricing offers two types of purchase plans, each with variable tiers. For this comparison, we will look at their Marketing Campaign Plans, as these services are the most similar to what Mailchimp offers.
SendGrid’s Marketing Campaign Plans are similar to Mailchimp’s (and most other email marketing solutions on the market) in that they are based on the number of contacts stored and emails sent monthly. Where they excel is flexibility.
With SendGrid, you can tailor the price more finitely than with most other providers plans, making smaller adjustments to the number of contacts needed or emails sent. This improves scalability, as adding a few more contacts to your list won’t push you into a higher tier.
- Mailchimp- Mailchimp’s payment structure is based on a calculation of contacts stored and emails sent monthly.
Its primary toolset — including templates, basic reporting features, forms, and landing pages — are all available in the lowest tiers, with its most advanced optimization and segmentation features reserved for Premium members.
Winner — Both of these toolsets are value-added thanks to the ROI they will produce. That said, SendGrid allows you to scale more efficiently, giving them an edge in this category overall.
SendGrid vs. Mailchimp: Which is right for your business?
The fact of the matter is you can’t go wrong with either of these email marketing tools. Both offer top-of-field features at a competitive price. So how do you decide which is right for you?
SendGrid is right for...
With SendGrid, you get a complete email marketing service that is focused on improving the results of your email marketing campaigns. Companies that are struggling with email deliverability and campaign success will benefit tremendously from the tools and expertise SendGrid offers.
Further considerations include:
- Data and analytics- With SendGrid, you can dive deep into the numbers when analyzing your email marketing campaigns. The insights you gain can help you avoid the spam folder, decrease unsubscribe rates, and improve your IP reputation.
- Deliverability experts- SendGrid’s team of deliverability experts can teach you how to optimize any email marketing campaign. The lessons you learn can be carried forward, providing value beyond their toolset.
Mailchimp is right for...
With Mailchimp you get a full suite of marketing automation tools that do a little bit of everything. This makes Mailchimp the ideal choice for companies looking for a comprehensive marketing solution.
Further considerations include:
- Ease of Use- Mailchimp is one of the easiest tools on the market to use. Their interface is simple and intuitive and their knowledge base is comprehensive and accessible.
- Landing page builder- Mailchimp has a robust landing page builder that can help you drive sales through direct and targeted calls to action.
For additional resources that can help you find an email marketing tool that is right for you, check out:
Whether it’s SendGrid or Mailchimp, FreeAgent has you covered
FreeAgent CRM integrates with the industry’s top tools to offer a complete work management solution for your business. That means whichever email marketing software solution is right for you, FreeAgent has you covered. Plus, FreeAgent is:
- Easy to use- FreeAgent’s modern user interface is quick to learn and easy to use, encouraging teams to work within the platform, driving up adoption and aligning your work processes.
- User-configurable- With FreeAgent, the power is in your hands. You can customize and personalize FreeAgent to fit the specific needs of your business and teams without external support.
- Flexible and adaptable- FreeAgent’s robust toolset and extensive integration library supports teams and businesses of all types and structures. Whatever challenge you face, FreeAgent can help.
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