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Introduction

Convertkit is an Email Service Provider (ESP) that enables online creators to interact with their respective clients effectively and efficiently. The marketing software was started by Nathan Barry and David Wheeler in 2013. They have their headquarters in 750 W Bannock St #761 Boise (HQ), ID, United States.

Convertkit mostly prides itself on being one of the best platforms for email marketing service in the industry. It especially brags about how they are number one for professional bloggers. This might be the case since Nathan Barry himself was a professional blogger before he created the ESP to target online creators who are building an audience.

Convertkit Features

Convertkit features are embedded in the five tabs appearing on their website. These features include:

  • Subscribers
  • Automation
  • Landing pages and Forms
  • Sequences
  • Broadcasts

Subscribers

The subscribers feature shared among all ESPs as it is the tool that enables you to track the number of people subscribing to your services effectively. These email marketing software use the subscribers’ list to charge their clients. Charges are typically billed depending on the number of subscribers on the channel. You can access the dashboard using this URL: https://app.convertkit.com/

convertkit subscribers
Convertkit Subscribers Dashboard

Nonetheless, it is worth mentioning that Convertkit is a unique software in the email service provision industry. This is because the ESP charges its clients based on a centralized system of customer subscriptions. Therein, Convertkit does not double count customers who have subscribed via more than one sign-ups or through different sales funnel.

Still, I would say that Convertkit has some pretty cool tools on its subscribers feature that makes it worth using:

  • A graphic display of the subscriber overview data
  • Segment creation tool
  • Tag creation tool
  • Customer account profiles

Overview data

The subscriber overview in Convertkit gives you an overall evaluation of the integration of your customers via their emails. Convertkit essentially enables you to have a reasonably accurate number of the total subscribers, the change of subscriber numbers over the selected number of times. This data is presented via visual formats like bar graphs, making interpretation reasonably easy.

Convertkit also offers additional options within this section, such as the number of emails sent, the click rate as well as their open rate. These analytics are critical when analyzing how to increase your subscriber list.

Tags

Convertkit’s subscribers’ feature enables you to create and view your segments and tags. The segments and tags are lucrative and efficient ways of keeping your subscribers list organized.

Convertkit’s tag feature enables you to tag specific individuals based on specific user preferences. For instance, you can tag people who clicked on a particular link, people who signed up at particular times, people who interact based on specific holiday themes, among others.

To create a tag, you only need to click on the ‘create tag’ hyperlink on the website. This hyperlink will redirect you to a tag form where you enter details of the tag name, target subscribers, and the criteria for selection. Its that simple, and you have yourself a new tag profile.

Segments

The segments feature of Convertkit is like ‘tags’ father. I say this because much like tags target specific subscriber traits, segments encompass a compilation of different tags. I consider this to be more like a subscriber behavior. Segments are geared towards capturing subscribers whose tags (attributes) result in a themed subject.

To create a segment, you’ll need to click on the ‘create segment’ hyperlink in the subscribers’ tab on the website. The hyperlink redirects you to a segment form in which you will be prompted to key in information regarding the segment name, selection of subscribers via in-built filters.

Subscriber profile

Finally, the subscribers feature in Convertkit enables you to access subscribers’ profile information through the sign-up form. The sign-up form is the only essential information that you would have on any subscriber.

Most Convertkit users depend on this information to be able to render a quick assessment of specific subscribers. I would, therefore, advise you to prompt meaningful and essential client information at the sign-up (not too much information that will push away the subscribers).

Automation

The automation feature is the most marketable feature that any email marketing software has to offers. The convenience of the automation service sets apart various ESPs. For Convertkit, it has a simple automation process that consists of the trigger and action.

Convertkit automation

The trigger represents the event that prompts the automation service to perform a specific response (action). Convertkit enables their respective users to be able to set up its automation process in simple steps.

In essence, the triggers are created through a ‘joins a form,’ ‘is added to a tag,’ ‘custom field’ or ‘purchase’ tab, which prompts you to fill the form. Once the completion of the form is complete, you can customize the automation service to effectively affect the email sequencing.

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You can also configure the automation service to respond to a variety of other options, such as adding and removing tags, among others. But I would advice by-passing the more complex process of self automation and instead, using the automation templates available in the software.

Convertkit has six in-built automation templates that pretty much cover most of your automation requirements. They include:

  • Product newsletter template
  • Host a webinar template
  • Follow up with customers who don’t purchase
  • Product pitch template
  • Product launch template
  • Personalized content based on survey results

This automation templates are easily applicable and be edited to suit your product/service specifications. This will make your sorting and grading easier as you will be able to communicate the required information without having to repeat the process over and over.

Landing Pages and Form Sign-ups

Convertkit offers a free landing page and forms a sign-up creation service free of charge. Foremost, this is an exciting feature of Convertkit, considering that many ESPs charge for this service depending on the frequency and stretch of application.

Convertkit meticulously displays the landing page and form sign-up feature in a graphical manner that enables you to keep track of the subscribers that have signed up. Further, it shows the timeline in which the sign-ups have been done. Also, the feature tab creates a list of the landing pages and forms you’ve created.

In this section, I will describe the ‘landing page and form sign-up’ feature separately so that you can easily understand the application and importance of each.

Forms

Early on, under the ‘Subscribers’ feature, I mentioned the importance of knowing what sign-up information to request from subscribers to have relevant subscriber data. Forms are literal forms where the subscriber inputs their email and related details to engage in the prompting service that you’ve offered.

Forms appear like dialog boxes within the information shared in selected websites or product/service promotion features. The form can either appear ‘inline’ within the text, as a sticky bar, as a slide in or in modal view. In essence, forms primarily appear within other context contents.

Even so, the importance of forms cannot be underestimated as it is the entry point of any subscriber who ought to subscribe to your Convertkit account. In most cases, these forms are carefully crafted such that for you to access a specified product/service, you first have to complete the form.

The dialogue box typically asks for the email and a prompt to continue accessing the product/service. Afterward, the subscriber is then required to fill in the details with the questions you’ve prompted the subscriber to answer. It’s that simple.

Landing pages

Landing pages are no different than forms for their functionality. Landing pages will also require you to fill in the sign-up details to get the online user into your subscriber list. The only difference between the landing pages and forms is that landing pages have a specified page that is dedicated solely for this purpose (signing up.)

convertkit landing pages

Convertkit offers both the landing pages and the forms as options as to which you could prompt the online user to subscribe to your account. Even so, forms are embedded within the landing pages as well. Thus, while creating forms is compulsory, creating landing pages is optional.

Users create landing pages mostly because they have an already set up landing page or because it is the most plausible way of relating the subscriber to the services offered. Convertkit even has eighteen built-in landing page templates that are flexible and customizable to your specifications.

Broadcasts and Sequences

Broadcasts and sequences are the only tools in Convertkit that allow you to send emails to subscribers. These tools are classified as different features despite serving the same essential functions. Even so, sending emails to subscribers is the primary purpose of Convertkit, thus carrying an array of tools to facilitate this precedence.

Broadcasts

‘Broadcasts’ is the only functional feature in Convertkit that allows you to send a one-time email to your entire subscribers’ list or specific segments. Sending an email using the broadcast feature involves a simple process of selecting the recipient of the mail, the subject of the mail and the email context.

I know that you would agree that it’s pretty simple, right? Sending an email to a select group of subscribers or your entire list is based on the information you want to relay.

For instance, if you were to share a recent blog post, you would probably send it to your entire list of subscribers. However, if you were to share the launch of a new philosophy class, you would probably send it to the segment of your subscribers who are interested in philosophy.

Nevertheless, Broadcasts can be customized to suit user preferences. You can personalize your broadcasts by selecting the ‘personalize’ option that immediately appears on the screen when sending out a broadcast. There is an endless string of simple codes that can be used to customize broadcasts into user-specific requirements before sending them out to the respective subscribers.

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Sequences

Sequences are slightly different from broadcasts in that; sequences can be used to send out an array of emails within regulated periods. The sequences feature in Convertkit allows the user to create a series of emails that are to be sent to the subscribers based on the selected criterion.

For example, you could choose to send out an email to a subscriber that prompts them to check out a specific product link. The follow-up sequence of emails is based on the action taken by the subscriber after the initial prompt. If the subscriber does not open the email, you could schedule a follow-up email inquiring on the same, after a specified timeframe that you have chosen.

The follow-up emails could also be sent out immediately a subscriber checks out the link, prompting their thoughts on the product link provided. Similarly, follow up emails could be structured to suit the different choices that the subscriber would make.

The string of emails planned in a specific sequence is what collectively constitutes the sequencing feature. Furthermore, just as broadcasts can be customized to suit user preference, series can also be customized such that its presentation is fast and seamless.

A/B test feature

As a bonus feature, Convertkit has an A/B test feature that optimizes subscriber preferences to create the best outcome for your broadcasting or sequencing services. The A/B test feature tests the applicability and responsiveness of subscribers based on the subject lines.

The feature sends the prompted emails with both subject lines to 30% of your subscriber list. Therefore, this means that 15% of your subscribers’ list will receive emails with one subject line, while another 15% receives emails with the other subject line. Based on the subject line that is most opened by the subscribers, Convertkit automatically sends the email with that subject line to 70% of the remaining subscriber’s list.

CSS in Converkit

Even so, the emailing service provided by Convertkit does not use CSS. Therefore, this means that the emails are sent in plain text. This might seem like a queer choice, but Convertkit argues that it is unnecessary. I agree with this precedent in that CSS would create a heavy load. Subsequently, the ESP would have slower loading times, discouraging the users.

While I agree that CSS is an optional tool when it comes to sending emails, email templates are critical when engaging in products and services that have lots of images and graphics. Plain texts seem way too formal for marketing services that are to be provided by the ESP.

Convertkit Pricing

Now that you have a deeper understanding of Converkit and its features, it is paramount that I discuss the pricing details that are associated with using the email marketing software. This will enable you to evaluate its worthiness based on your service provision requirements vis a vis your budgeting plans.

Convertkit’s pricing strategy is used by almost all other ESPs in the industry. It maintains a directly proportional relationship between the charges and the subscribers (the price typically rises as the number of subscribers rise). However, the actual pricing figures are relatively low when compared to its competitors

With Convertkit, you can choose your payment plan to be either monthly or yearly as both payment plans are acceptable. The payment plan selected is dependent entirely on your preference. Nonetheless, I have to mention that the annual payment plan is relatively cheaper as compared to the monthly payment plan, as I will explain later.

Convertkit Monthly Pricing

Convertkit Monthly PricingSubscribers
$290 – 500
$29501 – 1000
$491001 – 2500
$792501 – 5000
$1195001 – 10000
$14910000+

Better yet, Convertkit has a 30 – day guaranteed money back for those clients who do not like the app after their first trial or maybe failed to see the need to continue their services.

Discounts

Convertkit has one guaranteed discount offer, and which relates to the payment plan selected. While paying for monthly packages is relatively affordable and achievable, paying for the annual package guarantees you a two-month free service provision.

Other discounts are related to the various coupons that are offered by the ESP during specific times. These coupons, as well as the advertised discounts, are only applicable to the company as they regard it as a marketing tool that will help them access more clients.

Free Convertkit

Ever since the commencement of Convertkit in 2013, it has had only one free product. This service has been made possible by providing a 14 – day free trial version that lets you handle up to 500 subscribers in your account.

Nevertheless, Convertkit recently introduced a free service provision option. This free service enables you to access and use all of Convertkit’s features but within 500 subscribers and below. Any more subscribers would prompt you to upgrade to the paid version of the software.

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The free service is mutually beneficial. The client gets to enjoy all the perks of the email marketing software while being a great marketing tool that allows more users to use Convertkit.

Pros and Cons

Pros

Convertkit now has a limitless free plan that enables users to have access to its service features for free

Convertkit uses a tag-based system that allows the user to capitalize on specific subjects that would create more engagement with the subscribers

Convertkit allows for additional content to be added through the use of tags

The ESP is highly flexible such that it will enable the site upgrades that do not interfere with the performance of the email marketing software

Convertkit also has a simple automation editor with inbuilt templates that simplify the process for the user.

Another great advantage of Convertkit is that it does not charge extra cash for double entries as double entries are recorded as one entry.

The software has the best lead – magnet as it allows the double opt-in options among its clients.

Convertkit has an excellent customer support service that runs 34/7 for 365days a year, and that can be accessed live, on emails, or through social media.

Furthermore, Convertkit’s data analytics is evidence of a well – structured reporting tool.

Cons

Unlike ActiveCampaign or Drip, Convertkit is unable to customize advanced levels of automation

Despite have fresh landing page templates, and straightforward form sign-up protocols, the email marketing software is limited in the customization of these feature tools

The split testing functions such as the A/B test feature is limited to subject lines only

It has a plain representation of emails sent to respective subscribers as it does not use CSS

Customer Support

Convertkit has a robust customer support service that is available 24/7. You can be able to use the highly effective customer service that is available for live chats as well as rapid email responses.

Furthermore, Convertkit’s customer support system supplements the services they offer with relevant documentation and video tutorials that guide you into achieving your email marketing needs within site.

You will also find that most of the questions that you have to ask have already been answered through the Q&A automation process that predicts various user problems. Despite this fact, you will get to directly communicate with customer support agents if you need specific help performing specific functions.

Convertkit Alternatives

When considering the alternatives to Convertkit, I can think no better than 3 email marketing software that have proven themselves worthy competitors in the industry.

Convertkit vs MailChimp

Convertkit Vs Aweber

Convertkit Vs ActiveCampaign

Covertkit vs Mailchimp

It is fascinating that despite the various disadvantages that Convertkit poses, it still has a high competition from MailChimp. Even so, the game is unprecedented as Mailchimp has only two valuable advantages of over Convertkit:

It is cheaper than Convertkit

It has well-designed email templates as compared to Convertkit’s plain texted email service

Concerning automation and flexibility of segments, Convertkit positively takes the win as it outshines MailChimp in the performance of these functions despite their cheaper offers.

Convertkit vs. Aweber

Again, Convertkit is a bit pricier when comparing the pricing packages available for the two email marketing software. At this point, I would say cheap is expensive because Converkit outshines Aweber in most functional tools provided by the ESPs.

I reckon that the only feature that Aweber can boast about is its affiliate programs, which are pretty easy to access. This is also mostly because Convertkit has a pretty demanding affiliate approval process and standards, thus limiting the number of affiliate programs that it could be associated with.

Convertkit vs. ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign is arguably Convertkit’s biggest competitor. Not only is it cheaper in its pricing plan, but it also offers a broader array of software features that Converkit does not even incorporate. Even so, despite the relatively lower start-up prices with ActiveCampaign, the costs skyrocket as you involve more subscribers into the platform.

In a sense, Active Campaign has more robust split testing features as well as automation capabilities that allow it to perform many functions than Convertkit. Nonetheless, the availability of these tools comes at the cost of a sophisticated interface that is complicated to operate.

In a nutshell, if you are interested in an email marketing software that will be able to handle your essential daily email functions, Convertkit is the tool for you. However, if you are interested in delivering high – end automated emails, ActiveCampaign’s power tools provide that solution for you.