ConvertKit Email Marketing Tool
(The Definitive Review & Tutorial 2019)

Everything you need to know about ConvertKit
and whether it's the Best Email Marketing Tool for you!

SproutSocial 12

In this Review, you’ll learn everything there is to know about ConvertKit Email Marketing Tool. The EntrepreneursGateway.com Team have carried out a vigorous test in this Definitive Review.

How does ConvertKit Compare against the Competition and Ratings and what is it we liked or disliked?

Does ConvertKit get the EntrepreneursGateway.com’s seal of approval as being one of the best Email Marketing Tool’s on the planet?

Is it easy to use and does it come with lots of features?

Let’s find out…

 An EntrepreneursGateway.com Review you can Trust!

Effectiveness

Not really for the advanced marketers because of its limitations, but great for the basics.

Cost

Not the most cheapest out there, but then it’s not the most expensive.

Usability

WIth ConvertKit, it simply doesn’t get any more simple!!

Support

Fantastic support, really felt loved!

We Like

  • A wide range of support available
  • Subscriber system is tag-based
  • Ability to create effective emails with merge tags
  • Has a very simple and capable visual automations builder
  • Alternative “rules” builder for primary automations
  • Ability to be able to create various different form types
  • Landing page builder
  • Bite-size reporting for subscriber acquisition

We Don't Like

  • Reporting data can be a little limited
  • A/B testing is very limited
  • Lacks customization options for their email and form templates
ConvertKit 1

Introduction

ConvertKit is fairly new to the software market and is a blogger and designer-focused email marketing tool that was built by Nathan Barry.

This tool gained popularity by achieving backing from some quite prominent people such as Pat Flynn, with an impressive and memorable tagline of the power of Infusionsoft but easier than MailChimp.

#1. System & Segmentation

In this section, you’ll discover which method ConvertKit uses with list segmentation to ensure that you offer the right products to the people that are interested in them. 

ConvertKit 2

This email marketing tool is based around the ideas of tags, which is of course, the most efficient way that you can manage both your subscribers and in running your automations.

ConvertKit allows you to apply your tags based on your subscriber’s behavior.

If your contact was to click on a specific link within your email, you are able to then specifically target them later on.

ConvertKit 3

By using merge tags, you have the ability to create and send dynamic emails, which means it’s possible to send an email which displays according to any tag that’s applied to each of your subscribers.

ConvertKit 4

ConverKit has now released ‘ConvertKit WordPress Plugin’, making it possible to track your visitors when they are on your website, and then assign tags appropriately.

ConvertKit 5

Before the plugin was introduced, this was a huge issue for me, and I found it practically impossible to be able to add behavioral tags to determine how users interacted with my website.

Verdict: Happy so far with ConvertKit’s tag-based system.

#2. Automation

Automation is the main reason why people use email marketing right?…..Can ConvertKit automate your marketing to save you time and increase your profits?

Let’s find out…

ConvertKit’s marketing automations manager is very simple to use. Having introduced their visual workflow builder, it’s very much the same as Drip and ActiveCampaign.

And guess what, this is what I think really sets this apart from its competitors; their rules builder! #2. 

ConvertKit 6

I think this was a huge step and what really put Convertkit on the map, this simple trigger then action combination is super easy to use.

Each automation rule is shown like this.

ConvertKit 7

Visual Automation Builder.

ConvertKit 8

This is as sleek as you could possibly hope for, and so much better than any other platform.

ConvertKit 9

In short, I can honestly say this was a real pleasure to use, displaying all of your workflows within the context of what your outcomes are in achieving in your business.

ConvertKit 10
Fantastic!!!…….

Wait it gets better!

The thing that’s so great about the new builder, is all things will happen inline, meaning precisely within the workflow.  From adding both forms and emails.

ConvertKit 11

This really does take ActiveCampaign and Drip down a peg or two.

Verdict: ConvertKit is not all about building laborious and difficult automation, it’s the speed and effortlessness that makes this so appealing to start with.

#3. A/B Testing

So how does ConvertKit manage it’s split testing capabilities?  How can it improve your goals and conversion rates?

We put it to the test…..

ConvertKit 12

If you are someone who sends out emails, then you will know that something as simple as just a few different words within your subject line can have such a significant result on the success of an email.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the case for Convertkit. It only gives you the option to test your different subject lines.  To really get the benefit, it needs to test for email content, delivery time and automations.  This I feel lets it down a little.

Verdict: If you are wanting best results from split testing, then ConvertKit will let you down I am afraid.

#4. Form Building

Almost every email marketing tools have their own form builder.  But…..are ConvertKit’s form building capabilities enough to help you to build your forms seamlessly to ensure your leads are captured through whichever method you use?

This is what we found….

ConvertKit 13

Without a form, you can’t collect emails, so this is why email marketing tools allow you to be able to build them.

I was impressed with this feature of ConvertKit. As you can see, it’s pretty easy to create them. The only thing that let it down was the design of them. Their customization options weren’t mind-blowing.

ConvertKit 14

You will also need to understand CSS if you want to change anything other than the color.

But….

It’s not all bad…..

You also have the ability to build landing pages, however, with the same limitations.

ConvertKit 15

Verdict: Boring ConvertKit.

#5. Email Templates

We all know that having a selection of email templates not only saves you time, but is also a way to keep the consistency of your brand. It’s also vital that they are responsive, so that it doesn’t matter what device your customers are viewing them on, your email won’t disappoint.

So how does ConvertKit compare when it comes to their choice, design, customization and responsiveness of their email templates?

ConvertKit 16

Not really sure where I should begin with this one!!!

This is really all you get with ConvertKit in terms of their email templates.

If you can code, then at least it has the options to hard-code your own templates!

ConvertKit 17

They do provide variables though, which you can be inserted into your email templates, making them more dynamic.

ConvertKit 18

Verdict: You will find it hard to design and customize your emails if you don’t know how to code.

You will have to choose between going with ConvertKit’s more straightforward email templates, or fancier ones that don’t convert!

#6. Integrations

It’s vital that your email marketing software can integrate with the most popular software tools out there….

Here’s what we found…

ConvertKit 19

ConvertKit is still a newbie in this market, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. It is supported by Zapier, which will open doors to hundreds of other integrations.

ConvertKit 20

By concentrating on integration, it does help bloggers to focus on what their blog is built for, and what their readers genuinely want.

Under Automation, you can find Integrations. This is where you are able to connect your list with numerous services such as Leadpages, WordPress, Shopify, Webinar Ninja and other services.

This will help to easily merge your lists into one, creating the opportunity to be able to reach out to your subscribers from other services connecting to your business or blog.

Verdict: As ConvertKit is new, it has limited integrations, however the most common ones are available.

#7. Tracking and Reporting

No email marketing tool is complete without being able to track and report.

How does ConvertKit rate at being able to review its data analytics so that it helps you to improve the overall effectiveness of your email marketing and also improve your profits?…..

ConvertKit 21

This isn’t something ConvertKit is really known for, but I think it stayed true to being simple to use.

You can see your subscriber acquisition for the past 30 days, with the ability to filter it around specific periods of time. That’s about all though.

It’s great how it can break down varied forms or entry locations, this not only will show in the major bar chart, it will also show in an individual area woohoo!!

ConvertKit 22

And there are reports possible for sequences, or autoresponders. But it’s not amazing.

ConvertKit 23

Verdict: For those marketers who really want to delve deep, then this isn’t the right choice of email marketing tools for you.

Support & Documentation

Not long after signing up to ConvertKit, you receive an email, and you even get a welcome video pretty impressive ha!

I know this doesn’t constitute support; however, it shows me that they are serious about their product, and value you as a customer, which I like.

ConvertKit 24

Convertkit claims that they will respond to an email on an average of 1hr 15 minutes, which is fast.

The live chat which was recently introduced is something I think most people look for when wanting support, and these options are straightforward to navigate, helping you to get the information you need as quickly as possible.

ConvertKit 29

ConvertKit offers a broad Knowledge Base, and you can access articles to walk you through everything from getting started to API. They are categorized with a search feature making it easy to find what you are looking for.

There is also the option of community-based support which allows you to join a community Facebook page or slack channel.

ConvertKit 25

Some workshops are available and taught by ConvertKit experts, that run throughout the year, focusing on various topics to help you achieve what you want and answer your questions.

Verdict: They obviously take their support seriously. Well done ConvertKit.

Pricing

ConvertKit 26
You get all of their features with almost any of their plans.  The only exception is their platform migration feature. It’s a little higher than its competitors though! All you need to consider is how many contacts you have. <ul “class-ali-bulets-green”>
  • Up to 1,000 contacts – $29 per month
  • 1,001 – 3,000 contacts – $49 per month
  • 3,001 – 5,000 contacts – $79 per month
If you have a bigger list, then simply calculate the monthly fee! It’s also a shame that they don’t offer you a free trial, but you do get a 30 day money back guarantee, so if it’s not right for you, you will get a refund!

Testing Deliverability

We wanted to truly test the deliverability with each of the email marketing tools within this review. This can be quite difficult to test, and we then decided upon two different methods:
  1. Run an identical campaign to measure the open rates across all email marketing tools
  2. For a more analytical, instant result, test with GlockApps
This process is covered in more detail – check out my roundup review on email marketing tools, so go check it out… (link to round up post) The Results: With our testing, the open rate for ConvertKit came in at a respectable 39% . That’s the highest open rate of them all!! So with GlockApps, see the screenshot below to see how it performed:
ConvertKit 27

To get a better understanding of these results, the attached table has been put together and here is what this looks like for all the email marketing tools we are covering: 

Software Open Rate Inbox Tabs Spam Missing
34.6%
65.7%
23.9%
9%
1.5%
30.10%
--
--
--
--
34.4%
89.6%
6%
1.5%
3%
39%
85.1%
1.5%
13.4%
0%
36.1%
91%
1.5%
7.5%
0%
34.77%
71.6%
4.5%
17.9%
4.5%
35.7%
84.8%
7.6%
6.1%
1.5%

Please note that unfortunately, AWeber wouldn’t let me test with GlockApps. Extremely frustrating! 

Is ConvertKit The Right Email Marketing Tool for You?

So, ConvertKit may not be the right tool for everyone, so let’s get to the bottom of precisely who this tool is suitable for.

Budget Bloggers

If you wanted email marketing on a tight budget, then ConvertKit isn’t that friendly.  In fact, it’s a little higher priced than that of its competitors.

Let’s see the numbers, based on the lowest plan for others out there in the marketplace.

Software Free Plan 1,000 subs 10,000 subs 25,000 subs 50,000 subs 100,000 subs
No
$29 p/m
$139 p/m
$225 p/m
$299 p/m
$459 p/m
No
$29 p/m
$69 p/m
$149 p/m
$392 p/m
$792 p/m
No
$45 p/m
$95 p/m
$295 p/m
$335 p/m
$595 p/m
No
$29 p/m
$119 p/m
$199 p/m
$379 p/m
$679 p/m
Yes
$49 p/m
$149 p/m
$254 p/m
$429 p/m
$779 p/m
No
$15 p/m
$65 p/m
$145 p/m
$250 p/m
$450 p/m
Yes
$15 p/m
$75 p/m
$150 p/m
$240 p/m
$475 p/m

So, if you were starting with a budget in mind, then you may be better off with Mailchimp or Drip, as they both offer great, generous free plans.

Beginner Bloggers

Well, it claims it is…..

Well it is a great platform for bloggers because of it’s simplicity and it saves a lot of time.  With it’s simple to use editor and automation rules, it’s a great tool!

So, to be honest, I would say yes!!!

Advanced Marketers

I mentioned earlier that ConvertKit claims that they are as easy to use as MailChimp and yet has the power of Infusionsoft!

Only half of the truth!

ConvertKit does lack in areas where you would miss if you were an advanced marketer.

I mentioned the A/B testing, the templates and advanced triggers and actions for automation.

ConvertKit simply doesn’t offer this.

If this is important to you, then why not read our review on Drip or ActiveCampaign .

Conclusion

It’s great that I got the chance to review ConvertKit.

Basically, if you are just starting out, then I think it’s perfect for you, but with too many restrictions, I feel that it wouldn’t be my number one choice.  Hopefully I have helped you understand what its capabilities and flaws are so that you make the right choice!

Disclaimer

(The EntrepreneursGateway.com team are committed to produce independent, thoroughly researched and comprehensive guides and reviews for the best products and services that will help you in your business and your life. If you like what we do, you can support us through our chosen links, which earns us a small amount of commission which helps us fund our research and maintenance of the blog to better help you. Learn more about our Review Process.)

Now, over to you...

Now I’d love to hear from you:

Are you going to purchase ConvertKit or are you already using it?

Perhaps you started reading this review with the intention to buy, and maybe now you’re not so sure!

Feel free to leave a comment below and we’ll see if I can help…. or check out the other reviews like MailChimp or AWeber.

Still not sure, got a question, I’ll be personally replying to comments and questions that come in.

If you like this article don’t forget to subscribe and let us help you grow your business.

Entrepreneursgateway.com Character

Leave a comment

WEEKLY GEMS

Sign up for weekly tips on how to improve your business