Email Marketing Software

Comparisons for Australian Small Businesses, Bloggers and Influencers

Its important when finding the right software or platform to deliver your Email Marketing that you understand your strategy and what types of emails you intend to send to your audience or customers.

We’ve briefly described the key players we think would suit your style of business and we have also asked some of our Digital Mums what they use – with some interesting results!

You’ll also find a price comparison table at the bottom of this blog.

It’s important to note that it’s not hard to switch platforms, so don’t be scared to start with a free option until you build those numbers – unless you plan on doing complicated funnels in which case we suggest picking the best platform from the beginning (no one wants to set up funnels twice!).

So let’s get started…first up..




Mailchimp was one of the first email marketing platforms which became popular with bloggers/small business owners due to being free, easy to use and allowing non-designers to create great looking emails.


  • Forever free up to 2,000 users
  • Easy to Use
  • Lots of Template Design Options + drag and drop style designs
  • WooCommerce compatible


  • Forever free has limitations on features (eg not all templates and features are available)
  • You need to regularly clean your database as unsubscribed and duplicate emails are counted towards your total subscribers
  • Funnels are complicated to create and features are limited even in paid versions
  • Not directly compatible with Shopify (but a plugin can be installed as a workaround)

Recommended for those who are just starting out and don’t plan to create any complicated funnels.

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I’ve used a number of different email marketing systems over my 22+ year career and I’m so happy to have discovered Active Campaign. It’s user friendly, intuitive and has lots of great integrations. The contact management is brilliant because a person exists only once in the database but can be subscribed to many different lists. Seeing the data history against the single contact record helps me identify who my top subscribers are. But where it stands out most to me is the automation capability. I love the visual map that I use to build my automation sequences, create a really personalised and relevant experience for each one of my subscribers.
Jessica Osborn

Jessica Osborn, Marketing & Business Coach



Mailerlite is still very new, and when you compare costs they are the cheapest of the options listed in this blog. We also love that they are developing new features at a quicker rate than its main competitor Mailchimp.


  • Forever free up to 2,000 users
  • All features available on the forever free plan
  • Easy to Use
  • WooCommerce and Shopify Compatible
  • Drag and Drop Design Templates


  • Not as many template designs as Mailchimp
  • Limitations for complicated funnels


Recommended for those who are just starting out and need a simple, easy to use platform to manage a list.

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As a service based business, my personal preference is Active Campaign. It’s a powerful responsive platform for anyone looking to automate the heck out their marketing strategy – and why wouldn’t you? It makes me feel like I’m creating conversations with my subscribers rather than just talking at them regardless of how interested they actually are. Yes, there are some functions Active Campaign doesn’t offer, like a landing page builder, but to be honest, I’d rather use an ESP that does 90% of the things I want it to do extremely well, than something that delivers all the bells and whistles in a basic or limited way.

Tamsin Starke

The Email Marketing Mum

Active Campaign


If you are planning funnels and segmenting your audience into their interests, then Active Campaign is a fantastic option. This is especially helpful for those giving away a freebie and then further funnelling customers into a sale as it allows you to monitor customers easily along every step of your funnel.


  • Great for funnels
  • Great for segmenting and managing lists
  • High deliverability rate
  • Drag and Drop Template Designs
  • Plan costs are customisable depending on the features you want



  • Not as many template designs
  • Form builder and landing page designs are not pretty (can be customised with code or using a 3rd party)
  • Costs quickly increase, so be sure to clean your list regularly
  • More features which can over complicate if you have no need for automations or funnels (but great if you plan to grow)


Recommended for those who need customer management and plan on segmenting lists so that people receive content at the right time for them – for example a Welcoming sequence after receiving a freebie – wait until they have read and then send the 2nd email.

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My favourite email platform right now is ActiveCampaign for a number of reasons but the primary one is that is SO MUCH MORE than just an email marketing provider. I use it to automate lots of things from e-commerce customer experience and sales, through to administration automation, and of course delivery of launch communications, email courses, customer onboarding, and general newsletters. I’ve tried a lot of platforms in the work that I do, and ActiveCampaign is one of the more powerful and user-friendly ones (in my opinion). 

I’ll also share the cons for anyone considering this platform but still on the fence. 

Pros to this platform

1. Forms and emails are drag and drop builders and auto optimised for mobile which saves a lot of time and fiddling.
2. ActiveCampaign offer pre-made automation templates to get you started. I’ve found these exceptionally helpful in automating list clean-up, sales processes (even on the Lite plan), and general admin. 
3. Super easy to see at a glance what people have signed up for, so that you can start conversations with leads knowing exactly what they’ve been looking at. Extra handy to see this when you activate the Gmail extension so you can see a contact profile on leads and customers who contact you via email. 
4. On the Plus plan it does allow for some very cool automation and integrations to save you a bunch of time. For example the integration with Facebook Ads Audiences, e-Commerce abandon cart automations, e-commerce customer relationship management, and the Conversations messenger app for your website. 
5. Integrates with loads of other apps via Zapier or Integromat to automate and connect data between business operations. For example, using the CRM/Deals side of ActiveCampaign, if you close a deal you can send a Zap to automatically setup an Asana board for that client, and then even setup the first onboarding tasks.  
6. You can use this platform to auto-engage with potential clients through the website tracking feature. For example, if a contact visits a particular sales page on your website multiple times, but doesn’t convert, you can have a email sent to them to have a call with you, or with FAQs, or to remind them the cart is closing soon.
7. You can use the Deals/CRM pipelines to visually map how people are moving through your sales funnels or processes, and focus efforts on converting leads who are stuck at certain points in that journey. 
Cons to this platform
1. I have found that some basic CSS coding is required for the opt-in forms to make them look prettier. 
2. Cost jumps quickly when based on number of contacts so it’s important to clean your list regularly. Use the pre-made List Clean-up automations to build out your own automated processes for this so that you aren’t paying for dead leads or spam email accounts on your list. 
3.Does require planning in terms of naming structures for it to be effective and easy to navigate as you grow your business in this software. This means setting categories for email campaigns, similar categories for automations, and clear naming convention for tags. Ie. all freebies start with “free-“, for example “free-emailmarketing-ebook”. Setting this up from the start helps with reporting and excluding certain contacts from automations or campaigns without scrolling through all the tags to remember what you called your thing. 
4. Can’t build multiple sequences within a campaign sequence like you can in Infusionsoft. 
Robyn Kyberd

Optimise and Grow Online

Convert Kit


This is the last of the Email Marketing Platforms we will compare and is most similar to Active Campaign that we have looked at so far. There are less funnelling options, but the biggest difference is the lack of drop and drag feature with good reason. They promote better results as less imagery and structure = higher deliverability.


  • Highest deliverability rate
  • Create forms and landing pages to embed into your website
  • Compatible with most e-commerce and third party platforms


  • No Drop and Drag Template designs
  • Funnels can be done, but complicated to setup


Recommended for those who want results with their email marketing and intend to send text based emails.

Get Started Here:

Costs Compared


Please note that all prices listed here are in $US – I was going to convert but the Aussie Dollar keeps changing and I would be here every month updating – the rounded numbers also make it much clearer.

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Need Additional Help With Your Email Marketing?

These Digital Mums can help with setting up and managing your Email Marketing Strategy.

Empress of Order

Western Australia

Empress of Order helps women with business overload bring order to their lives, with processes and systems that leave them feeling supported and calm, with space to create.

Mel Vinen | Virtual Assistant


Stop spending precious time trying to muddle your way through your email marketing systems and get back to your life. Let me untangle your email marketing lists and set your automations so you can get back to m...

CloudXS Digital

Australia Online Only

CloudXS Digital is a boutique online course agency. We are Thinkific Expert Agency Partners who work with coaches, consultants and thoughtleaders who are ready to grow their impact online with beautiful, conver...

Cue the Confetti


Hey! I’m Kylie. I help wedding professionals scale their business through admin support, email marketing and systems set up.

I'm here to support your business... so you can get back to doing what you love,...

Creative Desk

Australia Online Only

Creative Desk is your virtual marketing assistant, we assist small businesses with affordable and professional marketing communications. Whether you need full support on daily basis or have a one off project, w...

Email Parade


I'm Tamsin. Founder of boutique marketing agency, Email Parade. I work with retail brands and marketing teams to unlock predictable revenue, consistent growth & customer loyalty with email & SMS marketing.

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