May 28, 2019

Should I move out of Mailchimp after the recent changes?

mike1975

Hey folks!

I am looking for advice on whether I should move out of Mailchimp after the recent changes... Any email marketers here? What are your thoughts on the recent changes? Are you guys also starting to look out for an alternative?

#ask-ih

  1. 8

    We run a competitor to Mailchimp (EmailOctopus) and have had people moving over to us in droves, so it's certainly disruptive. I guess there's more money to be made in CRM but if I put my bias to one side for a second, I think it's a genuine shame that they're losing the razor-sharp focus on email marketing that they built their reputation on. I always admired them for that.

    If anyone else is weighing up a move, our COO @td_evans put together a good summary of the changes: https://medium.com/@td_evans/the-details-behind-mailchimps-2019-pricing-change-3c1cd02bc270

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      +1 for EmailOctopus. We moved from MC to EO and haven't looked back.

    2. 3

      Thanks for this post. I was planning on using MailChimps automation flow and after reading your post and comparing the price i see that I need to make the switch. Checking out EmailOct now. Thanks.

      1. 2

        Hey Adam, appreciate you checking us out. Give me a shout if you've got any questions.

  2. 6

    A long time ago I made the decision not to use Mailchimp. Instead, I figured since I'll mostly be E-mailing my users anyway, I'd build some logic for sending E-mail into my app, and use Sendgrid for the actual sending of E-mails and stats reporting.

    I'm fairly happy with the result, it gives me more freedom to explore things like bayesian bandit testing of multiple E-mail versions while sending out.

    The disadvantage is that there is no "external web interface", so I need to prepare mailings myself and starting them isn't obvious. I can't outsource this work right now.

    As a side note, I find the idea of charging for unubscribed users rather amusing :-)

    1. 4

      Yes, it absolutely is amusing. We were in a lot of bog while we were thinking of pricing as well and when we talked to our customers, no one seemed to like the idea of either charging for users who'd never be contacted again (like unsubscribes, bounced emails etc) or for more volume (which should not be a problem while sending to your subscribers). This might be a good business move for them but it squishes the expectations of many of their client base.
      I'm a founder at SendX(https://www.sendx.io), which has come upon in earlier comments here.

    2. 1

      It is not amusing... It is just that Mailchimp is no longer an email marketing company! So, they are no longer serious about the use cases that are important for email marketers.

  3. 5

    I'm facing this scenario as well. Instead of being alarmist and reactionary, I'm evaluating my needs and coming up with a plan of attack more to reduce costs than to completely abandon Mailchimp.

    Here's where I'm at. I currently have 3 audiences, my product newsletter (~3k), my personal blog list (~300), my wife's blog list (just started)

    I'm currently paying for Mailchimp because I have over 2k people. Price is around ~40$ USD per month, give or take. It's not breaking the bank, but considering I went from paying nothing to paying that much did have a small bit of sticker shock.

    I did browse some other providers, and actually found that for my personal set of circumstances, Mailchimp was actually still cheaper.

    With that, to move off Mailchimp means I have to make coding changes to my application as well as set up 2 RSS feed newsletters. It's not a ton of work, but it's all work that takes me away from making my product better or focusing on blog content.

    From where I'm sitting, if I did want to take my ball and go home, I'd obviously need to find a provider that does RSS feeds to emails for my blogs, but those 2 lists collectively don't exceed Mailchimp's free limits.

    That means the obvious block of work would be to move my product's list, and do the code updates to talk to the new provider. Trivial work at best, but still takes take. I'm not entirely sure that it's worth it for me to do so right now just to save ~$50.

    I am planning on scrubbing my larger list to ensure that I don't have any unsubscribed contacts that I'm still paying for but aren't active on the list, as well as doing some more advanced list cleaning efforts. These things also take time, but not nearly as much, and would require zero coding.

    Removing unsubscribes may sound like sketchy territory, but the list in question is only related to brand new users, and not opt-ins via a popup. The chance of somebody being readded to the list programatically post-unsubscribe is zero. So this is a calculated risk.

    In the grand scheme of things, if the price gets out of control to where I'm feeling like I'm "paying too much" or "more than I'm comfortable with" I'll probably start by moving my welcome emails off to Sparkpost (I still have a grandfathered account with 100k free sends per month) and then most my larger audience off to Mailerlite if price is my sole issue.

    With all that said, Mailchimp does a helluva job getting my emails into the inbox. The bulk of my career has been spent working with or on email, so I understand the value here. Considering I've been using Mailchimp for the better part of 5-10 years and only within the last few months started to pay them, I feel like I owe them something.

    The contrary point is, I'm not an e-Commerce website, and it seems like the entire industry is leaning into offering tools to help e-Commerce businesses. I get it, those are people that have money, but it's just not my particular use case. Given a long enough timeline I'll more than likely switch just because I don't want to be paying for a ton of tools that I will never use.

    1. 2

      Not currently using MailChimp, but was planning too. Since the change, Mailerlite is the one that's standing out the most, but based on feedback here I'm going to look more closely at EmailOctopus.

    2. 1

      I share feelings similar to your Josh. My company's Bybrand email system is all over Mailchimp - It was the right choice in the past. I even wrote about it when we switched from Mailjet to Mailchimp.
      https://www.bybrand.io/blog/en/weve-improved-email-notifications/
      The new values are not affecting me yet, and Mailchimp has a robust API, If compared to Mailerlite, their API is very weak.

      I did the calculations, and if I use all the resources, I should pay between $ 70 a month.

      I’ve had bad experiences with similar software, basing only on the low price. Don't just go for the price only.

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        Yeah, hard to go for price only. Honestly, I'm actually really apprehensive about relying on a service AND it being free. Free can go away or at the very least become more restrictive over time. It's great to save a few bucks, but not at the detriment to being able to have a reliable service.

        Feel like a lot of the "migrate from Mailchimp" efforts are solely geared towards offering a lower price and not actually providing better tools.

        Running into a lot of price battles running my own service as well. Market's seeing more [brand] imitators that aren't providing additional value, just simply undercutting my own pricing offering.

        I love Sparkpost a ton, but they did something similar when Mailchimp redid pricing on their Mandrill offering. Since then Sparkpost has also eliminated their own free aas well.

    3. 1

      WoW! Thanks for sharing the details in such a great length, Josh. Appreciate it.

      I don't think this will work out for me though. I have 5+ lists and Mailchimp would to be too costly for this. I don't want to stick around as grandfathered user simply because email is really important for my business and I no longer trust Mailchimp as a custodian to the most important stack of my business.

      I am strongly thinking about going ahead with sendx.io . They are currently running a free migration service for all the Mailchimp users that got affected by this change.

      Everything looks pretty good till now (I am in free trail). Will share my feedback in few days.

      1. 1

        Yeah I get that, the prices spike quick from what I've noticed (I'm moving up a tier every month it feels like). Curious to hear about your experiences with sendx!!

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          Hey @joshtronic! It been going good. I have moved the paid plan. Here are more details - https://www.indiehackers.com/post/67279d2f7c?commentId=-Lg7wPuBVHKIXtbuM2EM

  4. 3

    I left them ages ago. They're milking the suckers who stay.

  5. 1

    Anyone looked at https://sendy.co/ ? It’s self hosted (LAMP) for admin/reports/subscribe forms etc but sends via Amazon SES like Email Octopus does. Should be significantly cheaper than most for my use case of a lot of subscribers but infrequent sends (quarterly)

  6. 1

    It is concerning, but at least for now, as far as I understand existing customers are not affected so much. Unsubscribed emails will not be included when calculating pricing.

  7. 1

    Hey Folks!

    The author of the post here.

    I have decided to move out of Mailchimp.

    I have been trying sendx.io after it got recommended by several folks here. Super impressed till now. Here is what I liked:

    • Excellent email deliverability (my last two campaigns got better email delivery than MailChimp).
    • Free migration service. I started the trial day before yesterday and my entire account was set up by them on the very same day.
    • Cost - Sendx turns out to be cheaper than Mailchimp
    • I found a feature to feature parity when compared with Mailchimp (for my use case at least)
    • Chat support (very responsive)

    Will keep you guys posted as I learn more.

    1. 1

      Cool - glad you found something that matches your needs! What's your business do/called (sorry didn't see it on your profile)? Is email a big part of it?

      Happy to give you some pointers if you need.

      1. 1

        Hey @td_evans! Good for now but I will reach out if I need help. Do you run an email marketing agency ?

        1. 1

          No, I run an email marketing platform - but always happy to lend a hand to those that need.

          What does you product/service do again?

  8. 0

    Try: https://www.newsletter2go.com Super cool service.

  9. 5

    This comment was deleted 8 months ago.

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      Aw man that sucks. I saw their email but didn't know about all the pricing tier changes. MC was my goto for new projects. Very curious to see what alternatives people recommend.

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        1. 2

          Thanks Matthew!

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        I can completely understand man! Here is a list of the top Mailchimp alternatives out there - https://www.sendx.io/blog/using-mailchimp-alternatives/

      3. 0

        I am trying out sendx.io now. Everything looks good so far + they are running a free migration service for all users that got affected by this Mailchimp change.