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Based on weighted criteria below
Low Pricing icon

Low Pricing (weighted 11%)

Constant Contact

Constant Contact offers 2 list based pricing plans:

E-mail Plan:

$15/month
for 0-500 subscribers,

$35/month
for 501-2,500 subscribers,

$55/month
for 2,501-5,000 subscribers,

$85/month
for 5,001-10,000 subscribers,

Custom quotation for more than 10,000 subscribers.

Email Plus Plan (includes more advanced features like surveys, registration forms, coupons, and more):

$45/month
for 0-500 subscribers,

$60/month
for 501-2,500 subscribers,

$80/month
for 2,501-5,000 subscribers,

$110/month
5,001-10,000 subscribers.

Custom quotation for more than 10,000 subscribers.

Constant Contact has no setup fees, 60 day free trial (for 100 contacts), 10% discount if you prepay for 6 months in advance, or 15% off for a year in advance. They also offer double the incentive to prepay for nonprofits, with a 20% discount for 6 months and a 30% discount for annual payments.

They will also never bill you for unsubscribers, unlike AWeber.

AWeber

$19/month
for 0-500 subscribers

$29/month
for 501-2,500 subscribers,

$49/month
for 2501-5,000 subscribers

$69/month
for 5,001-10,000 subscribers,

$149/month
for 10,001-25,000 subscribers,

For more than 25,000 subscribers AWeber offer an enterprise package.

All of these pricing plans include unlimited emails and unlimited image hosting. They also have a 30 day free trial so you can check it out to see if it meets your needs.

It seems that AWeber also charges for unsubscribers when they calculate your monthly number of subscribers. This seems completely counter-intuitive, but it is their policy. If you don't want to get charged for unsubscribers, they say you should delete your unsubscriber list.

That can mess up all kinds of data that you may need to streamline your email marketing campaign. This is a pretty shady policy that is buried deep in AWeber's help section, so many people don't realize until they've already signed up.

Be careful when getting close to those subscriber limits. If you exceed the limit on subscribers, AWeber will go ahead and bill you for the next plan up.

Design icon

Design (weighted 11%)

Constant Contact

Constant Contact's design looks a bit dated. The email templates are kind of boring.

You still get access to more than 400 built-in templates and with the use of the drag and drop editor you can customize the templates to put your own personal spin on them.

A HTML editor is also available if you are planning to code a custom email.

If you want to ensure that your email will render well on mobile devices you’ll have to look for mobile-friendly templates. The downside is that you don’t have a mobile preview, so you have to be careful when you design your template.

Sadly, Constant Contact does not offer preview for mobile devices or different kinds of email clients. This is a big deal, and using Constant Contact will have you wasting a lot of time in testing.

AWeber

There are more than 700 templates in AWeber. The editor is much more flexible than Campaign Monitor.

If you don't want to use their templates there are a couple different options to choose from. You can create your own custom HTML template, which will obviously require some HTML skills.

You can also contact the AWeber team to modify an existing template or create an entirely new one. They charge $29 for editing an existing template and $299 for creating an entirely new one. The new one may be a bit pricey, but editing an existing one is a pretty good deal.

AWeber doesn't let you preview emails in different email clients either. This is a bit of a letdown.

Frontend Features icon

Frontend Features (weighted 11%)

Constant Contact

Constant Contact gives you access to the basics, like subscriber profiles, list growth tools and list segmentation, social media support, multiple user accounts and signup forms.

Other features like split A/B testing and trigger-based messaging aren't in Constant Contact. If you want to use either of those you'll need third party integrations. This is a bit of a shame. A/B testing can be really useful in making a successful email marketing campaign, and it is disappointing that it's not included in Constant Contact.

Constant Contact also only lets you create one sign-up form per account. That is a little absurd. Any email marketing campaign has to target different kinds of users, and they won't all respond to the same form.

They've got Android and iOS apps as well. Those are pretty impressive. They allow you to create new emails, send emails, and track your data from your phone. This strikes me as pretty slick for a program that doesn't have mobile preview.

AWeber

AWeber has a pretty sophisticated autoresponder system. They allow you to send a number of follow up emails to your customers automatically.

There is also a very nice landing page creator in AWeber. This lets your customers fall on an attractive page that can easily convert them into subscribers.

The AWeber form templates are easy to navigate and you customers should have no trouble with the form's flow. There is no danger of frustrating a potential subscriber.

AWeber has a mobile stats app, for iOS and Android, that will help you view important stats for your list, broadcasts, and subscribers while on the move. They app only measures your stats though, so it is useful as a monitoring tool, but you won't be able to react to that information until you're back at a computer.

Backend Features icon

Backend Features (weighted 11%)

Constant Contact

Constant Contact looks dated, and it won't please any web developers, but it gets the job done.

The user interface is pretty intuitive.

There's five huge buttons on the left side of the screen:

  • Home - This is where you go when sending your first email. Once you get started these options will be replaced by a dashboard with your recent campaign activity, list growth, and other recent events.
  • Campaigns - You'll find all the necessary tools for customizing email templates and managing a campaign here.
  • Contacts - This lets you manage your subscriber lists and your lone sign-up form.
  • Reporting - This has real-time reporting on all your campaigns.
  • Library - Here you can manage you stored files and access the image library, where you can find a huge collection of stock photos, both free and paid.

AWeber

AWeber's interface is very clean and modern. It's easy to navigate and it is pleasing to the eye.

At the top of Page, the current list you are viewing is displayed. You can toggle to other lists by tapping on the list name. Next you fill find links: Manage Lists, My Apps (where you can add your favorite integrations), and Help and My Account (where you can mange your account information).

Let's check out the main menu:

  • Home - which gives you access to the dashboard where Subscriber Stats, Scheduled and Recently Sent Broadcasts, and List Stats will be displayed
  • Messages - This gives you all the tools necessary for creating your newsletters, follow up, or broadcast messages.
  • Subscribers - manage, add new subscribers, and view you import history here.
  • Sign Up Forms - This is where you can edit all of your sign up forms that convert visitors into subscribers.
  • Reports - Here is where AWeber deals with all of its analytics.
  • List Options - This lets you access your basic list settings, personalize your list by adding and removing custom fields, and setup automation rules like subscribe or unsubscribe users when they subscribe or unsubscribe to another list.

AWeber's backend is very nice to use. They make it easy and simple to set up all the common tasks associated with email marketing.

Reports & Statistics icon

Reports & Statistics (weighted 11%)

Constant Contact

Constant Contact sticks to the basics when it comes to reports. You'll be able to track opens, clicks, spam reports, unsubscribes, bounces, and contact growth by source.

You can't do A/B split testing, or location tracking in the app itself. You'll have to use their Google Analytics integration if you want that kind of data.

You can view both total opens and unique opens, and you can also view a list of individual subscribers who opened your email or clicked on a link.

You can also see contact growth by source, which is handy if you want to see where your new subscribers are coming from.

One nifty feature is their industry average comparison. You can select an industry and compare your statistics against the industry average.

AWeber

You can track your sales through AWeber to see what email has been the most successful. The same basic analytics and reporting options (clicks, opens, unsubscribes, revenue) are available.

You can see exactly where they’ve clicked so you can build a picture of what content your customers like. It’s also really easy to see who has unsubscribed, and you can use this information to monitor what emails are causing unsubscribes.

AWeber gives you access to standard and more advanced analytics. They give you a wealth of data on clicks, opens, unsubscribes, revenue over time, subscriber growth, stats by location, area code, and market area.

These stats can be great for streamlining your email marketing campaign. AWeber goes above and beyond in reporting. They've got a lot more data than Constant Contact.

Flexibility icon

Flexibility (weighted 11%)

Constant Contact

Constant Contact’s import tool makes it very easy to gather your subscribers into a single list without needing to reconfirm their subscription.

You can upload spreadsheets and TXT files, or you can import contacts from mail or CMS services service like Salesforce. For creating small lists, you have the option of manually adding contacts.

Constant Contact has a 60 day free trial, but they make it pretty hard to cancel your subscription. They make you have to call a billing specialist to cancel your subscription.

 

AWeber

With AWeber you have only two importing options: a manual text-based upload and a spreadsheet upload from XLS, XLSX, TSV, CSV and TXT files. Unlike MailChimp, AWeber doesn’t have third-party integration for importing contacts.

If you are planning to import contacts from other web services you have to export the contacts from the services first and use the spreadsheet upload feature. This is something that will make moving from any other email marketing system to AWeber something of a chore.

You may cancel your account at any time and the backup data feature allows you to export your list of subscribers as you leave. AWeber is much more polite when you decide to stop using their services.

Automation icon

Automation (weighted 11%)

Constant Contact

Constant Contact's autoresponder feature lets you set up an email series for similar customers and send targeted messages.

You can also send automated emails to customers that make a purchase or sign up for your mailing lists.

Strangely, you have to wait a day after adding your contacts to your autoresponder list before sending out any autoresponse emails. This might get old pretty quickly.

You can't use the autoresponder emails as regular emails. That is kind of a bummer.

AWeber

Autoresponder emails are very easy to setup and each subscriber is tagged with a message number which indicates which followup emails they have received.

AWeber dosen't make you wait a day to send emails after adding someone to an autoresponder list, but they do have some weird stuff of their own.

To prevent a subscriber from receiving a specific followup email, you must set the subscriber’s message number to be higher than the email sequence number. This is a little byzantine.

Extensibility icon

Extensibility (weighted 11%)

Constant Contact

Constant Contact offers over 200 apps and integrations.

They also let you develop your own apps, if you are so inclined.

Some of the most popular integrations are Google Analytics, WordPress, PayPal and social media-specific apps, including the Constant Contact Facebook app.

AWeber

AWeber has more than 120 integrations with other apps. Just a few less than Constant Contact.

You can connect your AWeber account to social media, landing pages, shopping carts and many more integrations like WordPress, RavenTools, PayPal, Shopify and many more. They have most of the major apps you are likely to use.

The AWeber team does allow you to create your own integrations, if you have the coding chops.

Support icon

Support (weighted 11%)

Constant Contact

Constant Contact's best feature is their support. They've won three Stevie awards over the years for its customer service.

They offer phone, chat, and email support and they have a dedicated Twitter account for customer service @CTCTHelp.

Phone support is available for different time zones:

USA & Canada: Monday - Thursday 7am - 11pm EST, Friday 7am - 9pm EST, and Saturday - Sunday 10am-8pm EST;

UK: Monday - Friday 9am - 4am GMT,
Saturday - Sunday 3pm - 1am GMT;

International: Monday - Thursday7am - 11pm ET, Friday7am - 9pm ET, Saturday - Sunday10am - 8pm ET

Online Chat is available Monday-Friday, 7am-9pm EST.

Constant Contact offers a variety of live and recorded webinars, blog posts covering tips and industry news, and a massive knowledge base with frequently asked questions arranged by different topics.

They also offer in-person classes and seminars for an additional fee ($199+).

Their customer support is really responsive and helpful. It is maybe a bit better than AWeber's, but not by much.

AWeber

AWeber has live phone support.

They also offer live chat and email support.
Live customer support is available 8AM-8PM EasternTime Mon-Fri and 9AM-5PM ET Sat-Sun (the hours for Awber's phone support are the same as their live chat).

There is a huge knowledgebase available including FAQ’s, video tutorials and live free webinars.

They also respond to user comments and questions on Social Media, especially on Facebook and Twitter.

A searchable collection of hundreds of articles on AWeber's features is at your disposal to help you get started.  They have excellent walkthroughs, troubleshooting, and explanations of their software.