My Email Marketing Services Series continues with a comparison between two veterans: AWeber (founded 1998) and GetResponse (founded 1999).
If you’re an internet marketer, I guess you know how restrictive the majority of the email marketing services are.
From no content from work at home & make money online niches to no affiliate marketing, or MailChimp‘s funny “While affiliate marketing is fine under certain conditions, we do not allow affiliate marketers.”
AWeber and GetResponse are different. Both are internet marketing friendly.
I don’t know your budget or your needs. So I can’t tell you which service is the best for you.
What this review can do for you is to compare all important aspects an email marketer should evaluate before deciding what service to buy.
1. Free Trial
|Credit card required||yes1||no|
|Access to all features||yes|
|Trial duration||30 days|
1Note: AWeber doesn’t offer the option of a simple trial. It requires your credit card and the smallest package you may choose is “First month free, then only $19 monthly!” Once the trial period ends, you’ll pay $19/month automatically unless you cancel your account.
2.1. Monthly Recurring Prices
|No. of Subscribers||Monthly Price||Monthly Price|
2.2. Discounts for Advance Payments
|Yearly||15% off||18% off|
|24 Months||15% off||30% off|
2.3. Discounts for Registered Non-Profit Organizations & Students
|Non-Profit Organizations||3 months free followed by a 25% discount from there forward||50% off|
Note – AWeber’s ordering process is confusing:
First of all, there’s no “Order” or “Buy Now” button. You’ll have to click “Free Trial” or “Start Your 30-day Free Trial Today.” While the next page is order.html and the button from that page is “Complete My Order,” the rest of the content refers to the free trial.
Even more confusing is the fact that if you have more than 500 subscribers (so you have to pay at least $29/month), you’re forced to choose a package that’s not appropriate for you – such as “First month free, then $19 monthly!”
3. Additional Costs Not Included in the Prices
3.1 Costs Incurred Due to Unsubscribed But Not Deleted Email Addresses
|[…] unsubscribed addresses count toward your total number of subscribers […]||We charge for active subscribers only. Unlike some of our competitors, we never charge for unsubscribes, deleted email addresses or bounces.|
|Source: How Do I Delete My Unsubscribes?||Source: How does new GetResponse pricing work?|
AWeber is one of the few email marketing companies who charge for unsubscribed addresses.
What is super surprising though is that such an important piece of information is buried in a help article not related to pricing or billing (“How Do I Delete My Unsubscribes?”)
As expected, AWeber’s customers usually find out about this additional cost when they are charged more than expected, or when they read a third party article revealing AWeber’s practice.
3.2 Costs Incurred Due to Duplicate Email Addresses
|If a subscriber is on more than one list inside your account and receiving multiple campaigns, they will be counted as two subscribers.||Each GetResponse campaign1 is treated independently. This means that if an email address is assigned to multiple campaigns, it counts as multiple contacts.|
|Source: Email correspondence with Kelly Highsmith, AWeber Customer Support||Source: GetResponse FAQ,
How does new GetResponse pricing work?
1Note: GetResponse’s term “campaign” doesn’t refer to any campaign :) I got the following confirmation from Shelley Jeżewska, Customer Success Team.
I apologise for the confusion with the terminology. I know that many other email marketing platforms use the word ‘lists’ instead of campaigns and I believe we were planning on changing this when we update our interface.
Example of segmentation that won’t increase the costs: sub-list “Men” and sub-list “Women”
Example of segmentation that may increase the costs: sub-list “Newsletter Subscribers” and sub-list “My Affiliates”
Related Blog Post: The Unexpected Side Effect of Your Email List Segmentation
4. Prohibited Content
|Pornography and sex-related merchandising||Make-money-fast schemes, chain letters, pyramid schemes, payday loans, gambling, sexually oriented content, escort services, medical services, marketing: weapons, alcohol, or smoking-related products.|
|Source: AWeber Service Agreement||Source: GetResponse Terms of Service|
5. Prohibited Actions
|Importing or in any way using purchased leads.||Sending messages to any purchased or rented email lists, or any third party lists.|
|Source: AWeber Service Agreement||Source: GetResponse Terms of Service|
6. Customer Support
|Phone Support||Mon-Fri 8AM-8PM ET, and Sat-Sun 9AM-5PM ET||Mon-Fri 9AM-5PM EST|
|Live Chat||Mon-Fri 8AM-8PM ET, and Sat-Sun 9AM-5PM ET||24/7|
|Source: AWeber Contact Page||Source: GetResponse Support|
6.2 Practice: Testing the Response Speed of the Email Support
Excerpt from my article How Fast is the Email Support in the Email Marketing Industry? (User-Oriented Support Section)
Explanation: The questions Q1 and Q7 were asked only to GetResponse, the questions Q2, 3 and 4 were asked to both companies, and the question Q5 was asked only to AWeber. The points were awarded according to this score system:
|Response Time||1 hr
7. Tech Stuff
7.1 Email Deliverability
Some AWeber users aren’t happy with AWeber’s deliverability and move to GetResponse. Some GetResponse users aren’t happy with GetResponse’s deliverability and move to AWeber.
If you see their forum posts, everyone seems happy after their move from one service to the other. But if you analyze the whole picture, you feel that something doesn’t make sense.
Well, the fact is that no email marketing service can guarantee you the deliverability of your emails blindly, irrespective of your content and practices. For example…
Both AWeber and GetResponse work hard on maintaining a good email deliverability. But the deliverability of YOUR emails sent via their servers depends also on YOU.
Changing the email marketing service when the metrics go down is only a temporary solution. If you’re into a sensitive niche and you notice some issues with your deliverability, don’t move from AWeber to GetResponse or vice-versa. Improve your list building and email marketing practices. Otherwise, if you make the same mistakes, the spam filters will eventually match the old you and the new you.
|Importing subscribers without asking them to re-confirm their subscription||yes|
|Single/Double Opt-in Options||yes|
|HTML Email Templates||700+|
|Free Stock Image Gallery||6,000+||1,000+|
|Email Client Testing||no||yes|
|Deliver emails according to recipient’s time zone||yes|
|RSS to Email||yes|
|Android/iOS Mobile Apps||yes|
|Autoresponder||Time Based||Time Based
|Landing Page Creator||no||yes3|
|QR Code Generator||no||yes|
1Note: GetResponse’s action-based autoresponders may be triggered by: opens and clicks, changes in contact preferences, completed transactions, important dates, contact sign-up, or another autoresponder.
2Note: The Webinars feature is included only in GetResponse’s packages Pro, Max, and Enterprise. Running webinars from your email marketing account is quite a unique feature. I don’t know any other email marketing competitor who includes this feature.
3Note: GetResponse’s landing page creator includes over 100 responsive landing page templates for:
opt-in pages, sales pages, promo pages, download pages, video landing pages, thank you pages, webinar pages, about me pages
On the left side you can see an example of an opt-in page template.
No HTML knowledge required. A/B testing available. Integration with popular analytics and remarketing services including Google Analytics.
The landing page you create can be hosted on your own domain name, on GetResponse’s site, or on your Facebook fan page.
7.3 Email Marketing Training
Both AWeber and GetResponse provide comprehensive Knowledge Base articles related to using their service, and also maintain very useful blogs that are updated frequently.
In addition, GetResponse offers a free email marketing course – titled List Building Program – that covers “everything you need to know to grow your list by up to 10,000 subscribers in as little as 90 days.”
GetResponse List Building Program is free for all GetResponse customers. Even if you don’t have a paid account, you’re still eligible for this program during your 30-day free trial.
Each participant who completes the program receives a GetResponse University Certificate of Performance.
8. Affiliate Programs
|Payment Method||checks only1||checks, PayPal, ACH, Eurotransfer|
|Payment Threshold||$30 for U.S. based affiliates, $50 for all others||$50|
|Source: AWeber Affiliate Agreement||Source: GetResponse Affiliate Program Terms|
1Note to AWeber management: Hellooo! Checks only? Breaking news: The 20th century ended. Long time ago :P We’re in 2016!
9. Pricing Secrets >> Raving Fans >> Biased Reviews
Back in the good ol’ days, both AWeber and GetResponse made similar smart marketing moves ….
Confession of a veteran AWeber user:
Confession of a veteran GetResponse user:
The result of these strategies? Many internet marketing veterans (influencers) became raving fans ready to swear that AWeber (or GetResponse, as appropriate) is the best email marketing service ever.
That’s almost right. AWeber/GetResponse is the best email marketing service. For their veteran users ;-)
I’m not one of these veteran users. And neither are you. So let’s forget the biased reviews posted here and there …
10. Time to Decide. AWeber or GetResponse?
It’s easy to make a choice. The comparison tells it as it is …
If you’re not a veteran AWeber user who pays a fixed price no matter the size of your list, then you have absolutely no significant reason to prefer AWeber.
GetResponse in one single sentence: way much better autoresponders, cheaper prices. Ditto!
To Your Email Marketing Success!
P.S. Do you use or have ever used any of these two email marketing companies? If you stopped using anyone of them, what were your reasons? What didn’t you like? Share your experience with us.