MailerLite Review – Why I Switched From MailChimp to MailerLite

So I have been a huge fan of MailChimp over the years. If I remember correctly I have used them since around 2007. It’s one tool that I haven’t changed in almost a decade! However, when a newer and better tool comes along that helps me save money and become a better marketer, I am all for it! For those of you who haven’t heard about it, I want to introduce you to MailerLite. This is the hot new email marketing software you should definitely check out. I just finished migrating all my sites from MailChimp over to MailerLite and couldn’t be happier. Check out details in my MailerLite review below.

MailerLite Review

First off you are probably wondering what prompted me to switch. I use RSS to email right now to send out my campaigns. Since I don’t have a lot of time, this feature simply sends out my newsletter automatically each week with my new blog posts that I publish. This allows me to focus on my writing more. A friend of mine, Thomas Bass, mentioned to me a couple weeks ago about this new email marketing software called MailerLite. To be honest, I was tired of paying $50 a month just to have MailChimp kick off this automation.

After diving into MailerLite’s features and pricing I almost thought it was too good to be true. Why? Because the price for MailerLite was $40 cheaper per month than MailChimp, at only $10 a month! I was very excited and yet still a little reluctant because I was expecting to find a catch or deal breaking feature missing. But after doing a full migration, I can tell you that never happened. All of my websites are now powered by MailerLite.

MailerLite Pricing

I don’t usually start with pricing, but this is where MailerLite is dominating. As you can see below, for up to 5,000 subscribers I am only paying $10 a month. Crazy awesome! And that includes unlimited sends.

Monthly plans MailerLite MailChimp
Up to 1,000 subscribers FREE – unlimited emails FREE – 12,000 emails limit
Up to 5,000 subscribers $10 – unlimited emails $50
Up to 10,000 subscribers $20 – unlimited emails $75
Up to 25,000 subscribers $50 – unlimited emails $150
Up to 50,000 subscribers $100 – unlimited emails $240

MailerLite Features

Here are the primary features included with MailerLite.

  • Drag-and-drop editor
  • Mobile friendly/responsive emails
  • RSS campaigns (this is the feature I use)
  • Ability to disable the double opt-in (required feature for me, I see much better signups without confirmation email)
  • Subscribe & Unsubscribe notifications
  • Subscribe management
  • Click map
  • Emoji support
  • Segmentation
  • Tracking and campaign reports
  • A/B Split testing
  • Webforms
  • Autoresponders
  • File manager
  • API

Also, a few additional features which MailChimp doesn’t have is they have an “Auto Resend” feature. They also include 24/7 support by email & chat for paying customers. MailChimp’s chat support is only till 6PM ET, or rather 3PM for me (AZ time).

Migrating from MailChimp to MailerLite

Below I am going to walk you through what all I did in my MailChimp to MailerLite migration. If you want to switch, hopefully this will make it a little easier.

Step 1

The first thing you will want to do is authenticate your domain. This is not required but will improve deliverability of your emails. I highly recommend doing this.

This is more advanced setting, but this way there won’t be any extra details added to the sender field and it should help to improve your email deliverability even more. In order to use this method, you should have access to the DNS records for your domain. First, add the domain below and you will get records that have to be added to your DNS.

To do this, click into “Authentication” under settings on your account.

add domain authentication mailerlite

When you click on “Add a new domain” you will see some DNS records that you need to add, specifically TXT records. I am using DNS Made Easy so here is a screenshot from my dashboard. If you are using NameCheap or GoDaddy it will be very similiar. Again, use the values that MailerLite gives you, not the ones below.

email marketing txt records dns

Step 2

Once your domain is authenticated the next thing you will want to do is setup a new subscriber list and export your contacts from MailChimp. MailerLite calls them Groups. Which makes way more sense! This is how providers like SendGrid also separate lists, they are groups with segmentation, rather than completely separate. In MailChimp, click into your list and click on the “Export List” option. This will then email you a link to download a CSV file with all of your contacts.

export mailchimp subscribers

Step 3

Then you will want to do an import on your new MailerLite list. Select your CSV MailChimp export file and then when importing, I selected the following columns: Email, Name, and Last Name.

import email match columns

Step 4

The next step is to create a campaign. In my example I am using the RSS campaign feature. I input my WordPress RSS feed address and then click on “Insert personalization” to insert something more dynamic into the subject line. I choose the {$last_post_title} because I like for it to grab the latest blog post title and that be the subject of the email campaign.

mailerlite review rss campaign

Step 5

I then choose the delivery time I want for the email to go out automatically. I like Thursday’s at 8am.

rss delivery settings

Step 6

Then you have to choose an email template. They have a few generated or you can make your own. I am a big fan of the middle one “Top Stories” and that is what I am using for all of my websites.

email template

Here is an example of my newsletter. You can also see a preview of it here. Note: To get images to show up in your feed you need to enable featured images in your WordPress RSS feed. And then in MailerLite choose the “full content” option. Also recommend setting your RSS feed in WordPress to “summary” under Settings > Reading and then also using manual excerpts in each post itself.

example newsletter

Step 7

On the next page you simply choose your “Subscribers List” and or group that you created earlier and then confirm it for delivery. If you want to use Google Analytics link tracking, which I recommend, you can also enable that before hitting Send. Note: It won’t send the RSS campaign right away, it is simply scheduled for your next delivery date.

send email campaign

And that is about it for setting up your list and campaign. But now you will want to integrate MailerLite into your WordPress site. See below.

Integrate MailerLite Into WordPress

MailerLite has a lot of easy to use integrations for WordPress in which you can setup signup forms, popups, etc. I use the WP Subscribe Pro plugin from MyThemeShop on my websites and they added the integration with MailerLite after only 2 days of requesting it. This means I can continue to use my same signups widgets and popups.

To switch over the WP Subscribe Pro plugin simply go into the plugin settings and flip it over to MailerLite. You can grab your API key and List ID by going to the Developer API page under integrations on MailerLite’s website. Note: each of your groups/lists have a unique list ID, so make sure to grab the correct one. After switching over you might want to test with an email just to make sure your lists are syncing, but I tested and never had an issue on all of my websites.

wp subscribe pro mailerlite

MailerLite also has integrations with SumoMe, OptinMonster, Ninja Popups, Zapier, and more. And you can always create your own signup forms within their webform builder. See example of the webform builder below in screenshot.

webform mailerlite

Here are a couple other features I really enjoy having. The ability to customize the unsubscribe form page. You can guarantee I am going to be picking out an awesome meme to put on that page.

mailerlite unsubscribe form

I also love seeing the unsubscribe stats!

mailerlite unsubscribe stats

And that is about it. There are a lot of other great features, but those are the main ones I am using. Another cool thing is MailerLite is adding features like crazy! Here is just a short timeline of new features that they have recently added.

  • February 2, 2016 – Added RSS to email feature
  • February 26, 2016 – Added Subscribe and unsubscribe notifications
  • April 29, 2016 – Added MailerLite and Zapier integration
  • May 18, 2016 – Added unsubscribe survey
  • May 18, 2016 – Added iPhone app
  • June 9, 2016 – Added user permissions
  • June 17, 2016 – Added popup subscribe forms
  • June 23, 2016 – Added landing pages
  • September 13, 2016 – Added Double optin for API and integrations
  • November 10, 2016 – Added Monthly account activity
  • December 18, 2016 – Added Refer a Friend Program
  • January 11, 2017 – Added New Automation

Talk about keeping busy. But it is great to see a company really love their product and push out updates fast.

MailerLite Summary

As you can see MailerLite is packed full of some awesome features and I still can’t believe I am saving $40 a month by migrating away from MailChimp. My migrations went super smooth and I switched over all my sites in less than an hour. If you are looking for a new email marketing software that is cheap and delivers on functionality, I highly recommend you check out MailerLite.

Visit MailerLite

If this MailerLite review was helpful, please let me know below.

MailerLite Email Marketing
  • Speed
  • Customer Support
  • Features
  • Price

Summary

If you are looking for ways to save on your email marketing software and still have all the features you need, definitely check out MailerLite. I am saving $40 a month by migrating from MailChimp to MailerLite.

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37 Comments

  1. Dale Reardon June 27, 2016
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