If you had to recommend one marketing automation tool for small business, here it is
I refuse to ever tell a client there's a single software in any category that they should use without proper investigation further, but I have yet to run into a time where ActiveCampaign wasn't a massive improvement to upgrade to from other tools of similar price but lesser capabilities, like MailChimp and ConstantContact.
AC has been my own email marketing and marketing automation system for approximately five years now and I don't see myself moving away from it at any point. It's important for me to be aware of the tools on the market, and there are other great ones, but none that have been a worthwhile transition off AC for.
You have a massive amount of features available to you to handle basic email marketing, advanced marketing automation, behavioral automations, tagging and audience segmentation, and so on. That's just the basic package, too. More advanced packages introduce a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) aspect that is particularly helpful for sales teams, Lead scoring to help prioritize accounts for your sales teams to be more efficient, and dynamic content (among many other features).
There is little to see on the Cons. If I had to select something, I suppose the limit of three users on the Lite plan can be frustrating. However, it's typically safe enough for a small business, easy to share logins if needed, and the price and added features of upgrading to the Plus plan is quite affordable as well.
Best of its kind but getting complacent on the basics
I was a huge advocate for AC early on. Now, I temper that because of my frustrations. If they listen to their users more and get down to fixing the basics that are way outdated, they can soon get back to a full 5* experience. But for now, I would say try it out carefully. If you don't need the capabilities that distinguish it from the likes of MailChimp, it probably is not worth the annoying hassles.
This is high-end marketing automation at mid-market pricing. If you want to automate marketing to a high-degree and with great sophistication, AC allows you to do nearly anything - yet at a price point similar to email marketing tools with little or no automation. That's why I chose Active Campaign and why I stick with it.
For all of its technical sophistication, there are a few weak points around basics. Its email creation interface feels dated and the handling of image assets is clunky and horrid. Creating restore points and undo is flaky and unreliable. And what makes all this so bad is that users have logged these points for several years as top requests and AC has not addressed them. Instead they add fancy functionality. The basics of everyday use matter and the experience spoils the software for me.
Continual support each step forward
Even the times of technical challenges I have had were supported from the onboarding specialist and I have maintained what has been taught in each catch up. The technical complications are broken down and made simpler through amazing support. This has included a variety of either in person online, video training, correspondence through email and Q & A pages. I am so happy with what I have set up, it is much more than is needed for where my business is at, however many foundations are created to support my business growth.
The support is awesome and unbelievable. I save about 10 hours a week with everything set up as what is needed to be done once set up continues to meet the outcomes I created. There are so many options and ways to use active campaign. I use campaigns, automations, contact lists, email sign ups and as my business expands active campaign has so much support which I will continue to use. I am now free myself to do so much more than I could of imagined 6 months ago.
It is complicated for a non technical minded person.
A Must Have in Sales and Marketing
Keeping our team all on the same page. Being able to automate several tasks and be more efficient.
Ease to use and automations. How you can keep track of all the touches you've had with your contact all in one place. And the fact that I can send all my contacts a bulk or text without having to use another software.
More straight integrations with other software's instead of having to use Zapier
Very happy with ActiveCampaign!
My business is still small but growing and I know that there is a lot more to tap into for what ActiveCampaign can do but I have been very happy with it so far. When I was deciding who to go with, I researched many of the options that were popular and this one just seemed like the best one. Now a couple years later, I'm seeing more and more people praising it and what it can do. That's got me thinking I made the right choice. I mean, I figured at the time that it was the right choice but I'm seeing that validated by other's comments, too.
I like how powerful this software is and for a great price! When I started with it, I had quite a bit of a learning curve to learn it but had excellent help from support staff. It integrated well with my other online sites. Now I'm all set up and it runs like a charm. I look forward to using more of its capability as my business grows.
I have found it a little complicated for setting up with new lead magnets but I have attributed that to its ability to do so much so that you have to navigate around to set up what you need. And, I am still learning it. But what's great is that you can duplicate an automation. So once you have created what you want, you don't have to necessarily go back to square one. That I like very much!
The right combination of power, flexibility, and price
I migrated to Active Campaign after being certified on a top-rated automation platform, and from a direct competitor that did not have an easy-to-use and elegant email editor.
The two features that make ActiveCampaign powerful for me are the ease and elegance of creating email templates and campaigns, and the robust automation features. I've been able to accomplish everything I need.
The email build is superb.
I've been able to integrate Active Campaign via Zapier to every other platform we use.
The recent activity panel could be more compact and robust. The overall dashboard could be more informative for at-a-glance assessment of activity. I do wish it included landing page features.
I do wish the saved elements could be edited in the email builder and that there was more of a true "style" system with reusable and editable master elements.
The automations work like a charm
We are using Mailblue, which is a certified partner of ActiveCampaign and makes their software available in my native language and with Dutch support. This makes it quite easy to get support when you need it. We were looking for a tool with e-mail, automation and lead scoring features. As we didn't have any in-house knowledge about these (especially the tools), I've done some research. ActiveCampaign came out as the tool with the best functionalities for the best price (through Mailblue). This made me decide to start a demo, and eventually get the software. So far, it does exactly what I need and at this time it doesn't cost me a lot of time to figure out how to use it. The only thing is we currently don't really use the lead scoring mechanism as it needs a lot of tweaking (on our side). But as all other features are working really well for me, we're still happy users of the software.
The flexibility of the tool is something I really like. It's quite easy to use your own email templates, which are (as long as you keep it simple) completely adjustable as well as responsive. Besides that, the automation part is working like a charm. By using your own tags and fields you can practically do anything you want.
I am still trying to figure out how to set up a link with our current CRM. As ActiveCampaign has their own CRM built in, this is not one of the key futures. For our business however, we only use ActiveCampaign for the e-mail marketing and automations (so only the marketing department is using this tool). The entire company is built on the use of our CRM, so we'd like to see all of the ActiveCampaign data on there for a complete report.
This blew my mind
Fantastic!! And extraordinary follow up by their team! Tons of free personal 1:1 help, which I never expected.
Switched to ActiveCampaign from Pipedrive via ConvertKit and Keap - this is something else. I am so impressed. Very easy to use and well laid out, it is easy to create some of the most robust automated customer follow ups I have seen. AC blows the other softwares out of the water. It works, it is easy to understand and it is the most powerful peace of software I have seen in years. I am so pleased my grin goes all the way around my head.
Customer service gave 8-10 min waiting time on their chat support these days, and that is just not good enough.
Active Campaign has been a Game Changer for Our Business
It's been a wonderful experience all in all using AC for our businesses
Incredibly powerful marketing automation. We've been able to set and forget so much in terms of marketing emails thanks to this powerful system so we can focus more on our customers.
Lacks a useful mobile app for Android. The email editor is rather clunky and can be frustrating at times, especially with regard to the "undo" function. The image selector/inserter is also terrible.
Best tool I have purchased to manage my customer/client relations and workflow
All I can say is I wish I had known about ActiveCampaign at the beginning of the year because I could have saved a lot of money experimenting with other products that had less capability and functionality than ActiveCampaign.
ActiveCampaign ease if use is one of the best and the customer service is awesome. I have gotten nothing but great support and assistance in creating automatons that have help me immensely in setting up my new workflows. There is not a day that goes by that I a am not using ActiveCampaign to create more effective and efficient ways to communicate with my customers.
Although the software in a bit expensive, compared to some others the features outweigh the cost it would require to have several tools do the tasks of ActiveCampaign.
Way better than InfusionSoft
As the sole owner of a growing small business, I finally decided I needed "help" in the way of marketing automation. So that is why I turned to ActiveCampaign. It has been less than 6 months since I have signed up and so far it is going good and is helpful. The transition over from Constant Contact was a struggle for me since I don't like change. However I knew this change was a good one.
It is easy to maneuver through the dashboard and create campaigns. It is affordable and for a small business (only me) with over 6,000 customers the price point is WAY better than InfusionSoft.
It took a long time for onboarding. I wish they were able to complete it within one single week vs over the span of a month.
The best CRM I have worked with
Very smooth. It is all very logical, and I had no problem implementing everything I needed.
The delivery rate is impressive. I always had problem with another providers, but with ActiveCampaign none of my subscribers complain about not receiving emails.
The other thing that I LOVE is the power of the automation system. With this CRM I have finally do what I needed to do.
The price. It is a VERY good CRM in my opinion, but it is expensive. I feel that I don't need every feature, but I'm still paying for them (I'm a very small business). I pay it happily, but it still hurts :)
Customer service has always been helpful.
This is one of the easiest to use marketing and CRM software I have used! I switched several years back from another provider and wish I would have done it sooner!
The only thing I would like to see more of are the templates. There are some but building up the automation templates would be great.
I’ve used the free version of Mailchimp, and as my email list grew to a point where I would have to start paying for an account, I started looking around. After doing lots of research settled on ActiveCampaign, and while I’m only just learning how to use all the features available, I’m so pleased with it!
I’m no technical wizard, but it’s clear how much more usable the platform is - I’ve got lots more to learn but for a relatively small monthly payment, I can now start creating way more targeted campaigns and building better relationships with the people on my list.
Nothing yet! I need to learn how to use the more advanced functions, but I’m more than happy right now!!
Great for automations
Great cusomer service. Great for automations.
This a tool to help you convert more leads. The flexibility and power of automations is worth the money.
I just wish the forms were more up to date. Thinhs like a popup, floating bar lacks some behaviour control. But it allows you to customize it all with CSS.
Great ESP for Mid-Large Size Organizations
My favorite part about ActiveCampaign is the automation features. Using this Automations, you can set up complex marketing email campaigns. I use this to develop a welcome series and a reactivation series for people on our list who stop engaging.
The part that I did not like is very simple. There is no "Undo" button in the email editor interface. Control + Z doesn't work either. You would think for a basic email design interface an undo option would be standard.
Get Great Bang For Your Buck
1. Integrates with almost every major platform on the planet either directly or through Zapier.
2. Set up is pretty straightforward.
3. Great product if you are looking for a central automation hub with email marketing
4. Customer Support is pretty good.
5. Pricing is very reasonable for what you get.
6. Less challenging to learn that many competitors
7. Great online learning resources
--Text Messaging Setup isn't exactly easy to figure out if you are new.
--Learning automation with AC as a whole isn't for the faint of heart for newbies
--Sometimes support can be a bit slow to respond and it depends on who you get. Some of the support team aren't well trained
--Paying a pro to help you can be expensive.
Good tool to have
Even though I signed up in June/July, I've only just started collecting contacts from my landing page. I have not taken any training videos due to lack of time but as I learn how to manipulate AC more I may find more things I can do. I still have to fully explore it.
I can create different buckets for various campaigns.
I have to choose the entire audience list in a bucket for a particular retargeting campaign instead of selecting only the ones that I want to target from the given list.
No complaints here
It's very easy to use and integrated well into my Wordress website. The interface is simple and effective. The support is great as well - very helpful plus they often run free or very low-priced webinars with lots of valuable content.
I would like to be able to easily see my non-engaged contacts so I can remove them so it doesn't count towards my subscriber numbers - this can be done with some settings however seems complex and I haven't gotten around to trying to work it out yet.
Good for basic functionality and segmentation
The editor on email templates is very easy to use.
The reporting functionality is seriously lacking. There seem to be several little idiosyncrasies with email design. Fonts/styles won't save, old versions of emails go out, etc. I'm sure this is human error, but it happens more often with ActiveCampaign than with previous providers, which makes me think there are some weird saving issues with the templates sometimes.
Love this service
Powerful Automation only Lacking Landing Pages
I'm pleased with the capabilities of the platform and the flexibility to build many different automations.
I'm still learning the ropes about email marketing but switching from Mailchimp has not been a regret.
What I like about it is the automation features. With so many options there is a lot of customization available in their starter plan.
The different ways to tag and segment the audience is helpful.
The email format can be as simple or robust as one desires.
It lags a little and the rich text formatting toolbar is a little annoying because it resets the font randomly. There's also no way to setup a default font, I have to manually change it every time.
The lack of simple landing pages. It's a feature that other competitors have started implementing. I'm not asking for a robust landing page builder but it would be useful to have the option. That said, I'm guessing since the target audience is a power email marketer, there's an assumption that they already have a landing page builder or website.
The lag to load pages in the platforms is definitely a little disappointing to me. It seems to take a while to change between dashboards (contacts, campaigns, automations, etc).
Best E-Mail Automation Software at an affordable price
Customer service is very good and fast. Software simply works as described and for such a vital part of your business like e-mail automation it is great to have a stable software.
The feature set AC comes with is excellent considering its low price point. You have everything you look for in an e-mail automation software and with the recent design overhaul it is a pleasure to use. Very easy to customise the e-mail layouts and building automations is very fast after you got to know how it works.
The many features you have within the software kind of make it a steep learning curve. Other than that there is nothing I could complain about.
Amazing for everythine email marketing related
The software is great and allows me to keep everything organized. The integrations for some of the contracts and invoicing can be a pain but for the intended use of email marketing and keeping track of all your lists and Data it is awesome. I know they're working on building out the CRM side more so I'm sure it's just a matter of time before a lot of the features that I am looking forward to are in the platform
Easy to use
Thorough with deep integrations with our payment processor
Tracks emails and loggs them internally
Task system is great
Notes is very easy to use
Mobile app is great
Employee management of access is easy
The notes function can be inproved and easier to read
Doesn't allow you to upload docs/contracts that are signed to company profiles - no automatic integrations for that either obviously
A good option for marketing automation, with a nice CRM
ActiveCampaign is a solid platform. The CRM has nice communication options and the tagging system for contacts and in-the-moment segmentation are nice touches. The automation builder is a little clunky and, while it has lots of options, has fewer than some other platforms. The Salesforce sync is clunky to set up, but the customer service and support are incredible. We’re probably able to do more with ActiveCampaign than some competitors, just because ActiveCampaign really takes the time to support their users.
ActiveCampaign offers a lot at a reasonable price point.
The tagging system is a great innovation in contact-sorting.
The built-in CRM and Salesforce integration make it easy to communicate with contacts and keep track of those relationships.
The email studio is refreshingly usable.
Active campaign’s support and customer service are truly second-to-none.
The Salesforce sync, while convenient, is bulky and requires finesse to use.
The automation options are a little limited compared to some competitors.