ActiveCampaign vs Drip: an Objective 2021 Review

If you’re on the hunt for the perfect email marketing and CRM tool, you’re in luck. In this article, we are going to be comparing two of the major players in the email marketing game: ActiveCampaign vs Drip.

Email marketing is without a doubt one of the best ways to market your business. Aside from being one of the most practical and time-efficient ways of advertising, email marketing also provides a huge ROI of $42 for every dollar spent.

Nice, right?

With the number of email users worldwide expected to surpass 4.5 billion by 2025, email marketing is going nowhere. In fact, it’s the second most effective marketing channel when it comes to driving conversions, tying with phone communication, and sitting just a fraction behind in-person events.

So if you’re not already using email marketing as part of your marketing strategy, now’s the time to get started.

Both Drip and ActiveCampaign are leaders when it comes to email marketing. Both tools provide everything you need to run effective and profitable email marketing campaigns, but they do have some differences, which mean one might suit you better than the other.

In this review, we are going to compare ActiveCampaign vs Drip head to head. We will be looking at the features they offer, as well as their pros and cons, and the pricing. This will give you all the information you need to decide which one of these email marketing tools is right for your business.

Editor’s note: I’m going to use some affiliate links when possible to try to earn some revenue from my content. These don’t change the opinions espoused in the content nor the style in which they are written. If I think a product sucks, I’m not going to say otherwise. This is just a bonus and a way to fund the whole operation. Anyway, enjoy the article!

The Main Differences Between ActiveCampaign and Drip

In a rush? These are the main differences between ActiveCampaign and Drip:

  • ActiveCampaign is suitable for most types of businesses, including B2B, B2C, and eCommerce. Drip, on the other hand, is designed specifically for eCommerce businesses.
  • ActiveCampaign has a site messaging feature, which Drip does not offer.
  • Drip is purely an email marketing and marketing automation platform for eCommerce businesses, whereas ActiveCampaign also has CRM features that would be suitable for a wide range of businesses.
  • ActiveCampaign enables you to build landing pages for your campaigns. If you want to build landing pages for Drip, you will need to use a third-party integration.

How to Choose the Best Email Marketing Software for Your Business

When it comes to choosing email marketing software, there’s a lot of choices available. Before making a decision, it’s important to make sure the software you are going to use covers all your needs.

Here are some things to look out for when choosing email marketing software for your business:

  • Ease of use – Is the platform user-friendly?
  • Integrations – Does it integrate well with the tools you are already using for your business?
  • Mobile-Friendly Templates – Over 80% of all emails are now read on a mobile device
  • Marketing automation – Marketing automation can help you to grow your business on autopilot
  • Scalability – Does the platform have the capacity to scale as your business grows?
  • A/B Testing – Running A/B tests is vital if you want to optimize your conversion rate
  • Segmentation and personalization – Segmentation and personalization can help you send more targeted email campaigns and increase your open rates
  • Customer reviews – What do other customers say about these tools? Any red flags?
  • Pricing – Do they offer good value for money?

All of these points are important, but some may matter more to you than others, depending on what type of business you run. Keep these in mind when making your final decision.

ActiveCampaign vs Drip – Which is Better?

In this comparison of ActiveCampaign and Drip, we are going to be taking an in-depth look at what each of these tools offers. We will look at each area side by side so you can see how they measure up against one another.

ActiveCampaign Overview

ActiveCampaign is an all-in-one email marketing platform, CRM, and marketing automation tool that will help you to automate your marketing and provide a great experience for your customers.

The company was founded in 2003, so they’ve been around a while now. After receiving $20 million in funding in 2016, ActiveCampaign re-launched as a 100% SaaS platform. Fast-forward to today, and the platform now powers over 2.5 billion automations each week and supports over 100k customers.

It’s suitable for businesses of all shapes and sizes, including eCommerce, B2B, and B2C businesses. With a huge range of features available to help you engage, nurture, convert, and grow, ActiveCampaign gives you everything you need to market and grow your business.

ActiveCampaign’s Key Features:

The main features that ActiveCampaign offers are:

  • Personalized email marketing
  • Marketing automation
  • CRM
  • Lead scoring
  • SMS marketing
  • Website messaging
  • Advanced reporting
  • Site tracking
  • Integrated forms
  • Migration services
  • Training and support
  • Gmail Extension
  • CRM app

Now that we’ve seen an overview of ActiveCampain, let’s take a look at their competitor: Drip.

Drip Overview

Drip is an email service and marketing automation designed specifically for eCommerce businesses. Drip is changing eCommerce by providing small businesses with the tools they need to build lasting, profitable relationships with their customers, on autopilot.

The software gathers customer data that enables businesses to provide a personalized experience at scale. It makes it easy for absolutely anyone to run seamless eCommerce marketing campaigns, without the need to hire an expert. Although it is not strictly a CRM, it is commonly referred to as an eCommerce CRM (or ECRM).

With a huge range of pre-made email and SMS automation workflows to choose from, this innovative email marketing solution helps you to easily create impactful campaigns that are designed to convert.

Drip’s Key Features:

The main features that Drip offers are:

  • Personalized email marketing
  • Email marketing automation
  • SMS automation
  • Advanced reporting
  • Segmentation and personalization
  • Integrated forms
  • Dynamic content
  • Recommended products
  • Abandoned cart URLs
  • A/B testing

As you can see, Drip is heavily geared towards eCommerce businesses, providing all of the solutions you need to maximize customer engagement and ROI for your online store. It’s a great option if you are looking to upgrade your email marketing software, or looking for an alternative to Mailchimp or another basic email marketing tool.

Now that we’ve looked at an overview of both ActiveCampaign and Drip, let’s compare some of the key features.

ActiveCampaign vs Drip: Email Marketing and Marketing Automation

In this section, we are going to compare ActiveCampaign and Drip’s email marketing and marketing automation features. We will be looking at how easy it is to build an email marketing campaign from the ground up, and what’s on offer in regards to automation features. Let’s take a look at ActiveCampaign first.

ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign makes it easy to build great-looking email campaigns for your business in just a few clicks. There are over 125 professionally designed templates to choose from, so you can simply add in your own content and images, and you are ready to go.

All of their templates are mobile-friendly, so your campaigns will look amazing no matter what type of device they are viewed on.

ActiveCampain offers a range of marketing automation features to save you hours of time every day. These features enable you to automate your sales processes, follow up with clients, send welcome emails when someone signs up to your list, and even find your most engaged contacts, all on autopilot.

This frees up your sales team to focus on more profitable tasks like closing deals, allowing your business to scale and grow. They also have abandoned cart email sequences for eCommerce businesses, to make sure that your conversion rate is as high as possible.

When it comes to building customized automation and email sequences for your business, ActivaCampaign makes this super easy. A drag and drop automation builder lets you set up automated workflows in just a few clicks.

You can also choose from a range of pre-built automation templates to suit your industry. There are hundreds of templates to choose from, and they are all optimized for mobile.

Site tracking features enable you to create triggers so you can follow up with your customers once they have visited a certain page on your site. This means you can check in with your visitors at exactly the right time when they are at their most engaged, and ready to buy.

Drip

Drip’s marketing automation features enable you to send emails and texts to your customers at exactly the right time.

You can create beautiful, personalized emails from scratch using Drip’s template builder. The email builder allows you to drag and drop the elements you want to create your own template, which you can then save for future campaigns. Alternatively, they have a range of templates such as newsletters and birthday emails which you can choose from and edit in the email editor as you need to.

Creating automated email sequences is easy too, and you can choose from a range of pre-built workflows designed specifically for eCommerce businesses. The featured templates include:

  • Welcome series
  • Birthday and anniversary
  • Browse abandonment
  • Deactivate a person who unsubscribes from all emails
  • Magento/Shopify welcome and drive first time purchase
  • Abandoned cart and win-back emails
  • Lead magnet delivery

Alternatively, you can build a drip campaign or workflow from scratch to meet your specific business needs.

ActiveCampaign vs Drip: Forms and Landing Pages

ActiveCampaign has a wide range of forms and landing page templates that you can choose from.

You can build four different types of sign up forms, including:

  • Inline forms
  • Floating box
  • Modal pop-up
  • Floating bar

If you run in-person events as part of your business, you can create iPad sign-up forms so your customers can leave their details with you, even if you don’t have an internet connection.

They also have a huge range of landing page templates, which you can customize too if you need to.

ActiveCampaign’s forms and landing pages are very easy to use. You can create branded pop-ups, forms, and landing pages, without ever having to use a single line of code.

Drip on the other hand doesn’t include landing pages, so you would need to use an alternative landing page builder like Leadpages for this. Instead, Drip offers a range of easy-to-use forms which you can embed on your website or social media platforms to collect capture leads, and grow your email list.

The types of forms you can build using Drip include:

  • Pop-up form
  • Exit intent form
  • Side tab form
  • Embedded HTML form

The form builder is very user-friendly, meaning absolutely anyone can create a professional-looking signup form for their business, even with no previous experience.

You can pick and choose fields to add to your form, as well as creating your own custom fields. You can also decide whether you want the fields to be mandatory or not. All of the colors and branding can be changed to match your website, and you can even include an image or logo in the form too.

ActiveCampaign is the winner in this round. It simply has more to offer. ActiveCampaign allows you to create beautiful landing pages for your business, as well as offering a wide range of sign-up forms to collect data from your customers.

ActiveCampaign vs Drip: Ease of Use and Navigation

When it comes to ease of use and navigation, ActiveCampaign and Drip are a world apart.

Drip’s interface is very clean and intuitive to navigate, making it a joy to use, even for beginners. Everything about it is easy to use. It definitely helps that the background color of Drip’s user interface is bright white, making it look clean and uncluttered.

ActiveCampaign, on the other hand, uses blue, grey, and white, which makes it a little dull to look at. Couple that with the fact that there’s a lot going on, ActiveCampaign can feel very overwhelming at first glance.

Its sidebar is annoying to use as well, with icons instead of words for the menu. This makes it a chore to find what you are looking for since you have to hover over each icon to see its function.

Although both ActiveCampaign and Drip offer many of the same features when it comes to building emails, forms, and automation, Drip is much much more user-friendly, making it the winner when it comes to ease of use.

ActiveCampaign vs Drip: Integrations

Both ActiveCampaign and Drip integrate well with the major players in eCommerce, such as Shopify. WooCommerce, and Magento.

ActiveCampaign integrates easily with over 850+ apps, so you can easily connect it to the tools you are already using for your business. Its most popular integrations include Shopify, WordPress, PayPal, Facebook, Zapier, ClickFunnels, and other popular sales funnel software. You can also use its API to integrate with custom tools and apps.

Drip has hundreds of integrations to choose from too, so no matter what tools you use, you should be able to connect them with Drip. It integrates with the most popular eCommerce platforms, including Shopify, Magento, BigCommerce, and WooCommerce, but you can also connect your membership, payment processing, scheduling, video, and webinar software. If you have a custom eCommerce store you can still integrate with drip using their world-class API.

When it comes to integrations, both of these tools are equal. No matter what software you are already using for your business, you can connect it to your Drip or ActiveCampaign account.

ActiveCampaign vs Drip: Support

If you’re having any issues with your ActiveCampaign account, you can get in touch with one of the support team by clicking on the ‘get help’ button on the bottom right of your screen. This will enable you to type in your problem and will provide you with a range of solutions that may help you. Alternatively, you can click ‘contact us’ to start a chat and get your problem resolved as soon as possible.

ActiveCampaign also has a community and forum where you can ask questions and get help from other members. There is also a ‘University’ where you can find video tutorials and guides for everything you need to know about using ActiveCampaign.

Drip also offers customer support via chat, and email ticketing if chat is unavailable. Alternatively, you can type your query into the search bar, and you will be offered a range of documents and tutorials from their knowledge base to help solve your problem.

Overall, when it comes to customer support, ActiveCampaign wins this round. They offer a wider range of support options, as well as learning features, enabling you to get the best out of the software.

Reporting and Analytics

Reporting and analytics features are vital if you want to understand your customers.

ActiveCampaign has advanced analytics to help you see what’s working and what isn’t when it comes to your marketing campaigns. It provides you with all the information you need, including open rates, clicks, user unsubscribes, bounce rate, and forwards. You also get read reports, as well as user geolocation, and social mentions, and social media shares.

ActiveCampaign will analyze your campaigns to tell you exactly how profitable they are. Once you have this information you can start A/B split testing to optimize your conversion rate.

Drip has some great reporting features too, including revenue attribution which will tell you which emails and SMS messages are driving the most conversions. Drip’s analytics dashboard is easy to use, giving you all the data you need to understand what’s working and what isn’t, so you can A/B test and tweak your campaigns as you need to.

Customer Reviews

Both Drip and ActiveCampaign are doing very well when it comes to customer reviews.

ActiveCampaign receives 4.6 out of five stars on G2, out of 7,362 reviews at the time of writing. In fact, almost all of their reviews are 4 or 5 stars, showing that users are loving ActiveCampaign.

People are saying great things about ActiveCampaign on Twitter too, with users like @redefinedcreative switching over from Mailchimp as their business grows.

Drip isn’t doing too bad either, with a very respectable rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars on G2. This comes from a total of 422 reviews, which is a lot lower than ActiveCampaign’s number of reviews, but understandable due to the fact that it’s a smaller, newer company.

When it comes to customer reviews, ActiveCampaign is the winner, but only just. Both companies have done an excellent job at keeping their customers happy, which is great news if you’re thinking about using one of these tools.

Drip vs ActiveCampaign: The Pros and Cons

As with all software tools, Drip and ActiveCampaign each have their own pros and cons. Take a look to see which of these are most important to you.

The Pros and Cons of ActiveCampaign

Pros:

  • Robust Inbuilt CRM
  • Landing page builder
  • Lead scoring features
  • Powerful automation features
  • Good at tracking customer behavior across multiple channels
  • Visual automation builder
  • Drag-and-drop email template builder
  • Great customer support

Cons:

  • Landing pages are not included with the Lite plan
  • CRM is not included with the Lite plan
  • SMS sending is not included in the Lite plan
  • Complicated to use at first

The Pros and Cons of Drip

Pros:

  • Easy and intuitive to use
  • Designed specifically for eCommerce businesses
  • Clean interface that’s easy to navigate
  • Great customer service
  • Affordable plans
  • Drag-and-drop email builder
  • Easy to build automation workflows
  • User tagging makes it easy to send segmented campaigns

Cons:

  • No CRM
  • No landing page builder

Drip vs ActiveCampaign: Pricing

Now it’s time to take a look at the pricing, to see which of these tools offers better value for money. To make it fair we are going to be comparing the price for each platform using 500 contacts as an example. Let’s take a look at ActiveCampaign first…

ActiveCampaign Pricing

ActiveCampaign has four plans available, depending on your needs: Lite, Plus, Professional, and Enterprise.

The Lite plan starts at $9/month for up to 500 subscribers. It includes sending newsletters, email marketing, marketing automation, autoresponders, in-depth reporting, geo-tracking, unlimited sending, subscription forms, site and event tracking, live chat, and email-based support, managed email delivery, and data migration service. You can give access to up to 3 users on this plan.

The Plus plan starts at $49/month for up to 500 subscribers. This plan includes everything from the Lite plan, as well as landing pages, automation map, CRM, and sales automation. It also includes contact and lead scoring, conditional content, custom user permissions, subscribe by SMS, SMS sending, Facebook custom audience integration, custom branded forms, one-to-one training, free email design service, and access for up to 25 users.

The Professional plan starts at $129/month for up to 500 subscribers. This plan includes everything from the Lite and Plus plans. It also includes split automation, site messages, predictive sending, and access for up to 50 users.

Last but not least is the Enterprise plan. This plan starts at $229/month for up to 500 contacts. It includes everything from the other three plans, as well as social data, HIPAA compliance, customized mail server domain, custom SMS number, and phone support.

Drip Pricing

Drip’s pricing plan is refreshingly simple. There is just one plan, and it includes all of Drips features regardless of the size of your contact list. The pricing varies according to the number of contacts you want to have, but it starts at just $19 for up to 500 contacts.

If you want to add SMS, you can do this separately. SMS starts at $15 for 1000 sends, so you just pay for what you need each month.

The features included with Drip’s plan include: Unlimited account users, unlimited email sends, SMS and MMS, email builder, abandoned cart URLs, Facebook custom audiences, behavior tracking, A/B split testing, visual workflow builder, tagging and tracking based on customer behavior, and engagement tracking.

Overall, it’s easy to see that Drip offers better value for money than ActiveCampaign. Although ActiveCampaign may seem cheaper at first glance, its Lite plan doesn’t offer a lot of the important features you would expect from a marketing automation tool.

The main thing that sets ActiveCampaign apart from Drip is its CRM, landing page, and lead scoring capabilities, which are not included in the Lite Plan. If you are an eCommerce business owner, the choice is a no-brainer. It’s got to be Drip.

ActiveCampaign vs Drip: The Verdict

So, who’s the winner out of ActiveCampaign and Drip?

It’s a tricky one actually, as both tools have different features, so it really depends on the type of business you are running.

If you are an eCommerce business owner, then the best option for you is Drip. Drip includes all of the features you need to create an amazing experience for your customers while increasing sales and conversions. It’s user-friendly too. Even if you’re a complete beginner, you will have no trouble managing your campaigns with Drip.

ActiveCampaign is a great tool too but it’s better suited to B2B and B2C businesses, and bloggers. Its CRM features are fantastic, and the automation features can help you grow your business on autopilot, ensuring nothing is forgotten and all customers are provided with an experience that’s memorable for the right reasons.

If you are an eCommerce business owner, and you want to find out more about what Drip has to offer, head over to their website to take advantage of their free 14-day trial. No credit card required.

And if you think that ActiveCampaign might be the right choice for your business, you can head to their website and try it out for free too.

Emily Brookes

Comments are closed.